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Bushmaster 450 Thumper
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 Posted: Sun Dec 30th, 2007 11:17 PM
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Force_Recon_Marine
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Has anyone had any experience with this round? I saw an ad about it and I would like to find out more.



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 Posted: Sun Dec 30th, 2007 11:46 PM
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VA Bigbore
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Force_Recon_Marine wrote: Has anyone had any experience with this round? I saw an ad about it and I would like to find out more.

Can't say that I have heard or seen anything on this round since its original marketing sales brief.  During that time they were still a year away from regular production, guess they had to get their literature out before the 458 Socom hit the market in mass publicity.

If you want some info on a real thumper, check out the .50 Beowulf.  The .50 Beowulf platform was built off of readily available reloading components and can be reloaded to match factory specs.  The 450 Bushmaster (Thumper) will be factory loaded with double-based powders and the end user will most likely be unable to match factory ballistics because of the small propellent chamber of the cartridge.  The .458 Socom has better ballistics and from what I understand is a better round than the 450 Bushmaster anyway.

But, if you want a round that will really get the guy's attention beside you check out the .50 Beowulf.  I have a page on my website solely devoted to this cartridge and the Alexander Arms upper.  I also have links to other sites and the manufacturer as well that you can visit and read up on.  There is just something cool about a .50 cal on an AR-15 platform!!:thumbs:  Here's the link to my page:

http://www.brleather.net/.50_Beowulf.html



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 Posted: Mon Dec 31st, 2007 02:56 AM
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Force_Recon_Marine
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Well I already shoot a .50 BMG. I just want something for a brush gun that will perform. I have looked at the Beowulf but I am not that impressed with the ballistics. I like the idea of a .45 caliber in an AR rifle. The ballistics are pretty impressive if they are correct. Here is a link.

https://www.hornady.com/story.php?s=543



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 Posted: Mon Dec 31st, 2007 04:47 AM
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VA Bigbore
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Force_Recon_Marine wrote: Well I already shoot a .50 BMG. I just want something for a brush gun that will perform. I have looked at the Beowulf but I am not that impressed with the ballistics. I like the idea of a .45 caliber in an AR rifle. The ballistics are pretty impressive if they are correct. Here is a link.

https://www.hornady.com/story.php?s=543


Ballistically, there is not much difference between the three calibers listed.  Especially if you compare the same bullet weights.  I won't say that one is better than the other, especially since once you get up to a 300+ grain bullets, it is a lot of energy no matter if it is a 45 cal or a 50 cal.

My main point was that with the 450 Bushmaster, the only way you will get the ballistics that they post is with their double-based powder factory loadings.  You will never reach those ballistics by reloading.  Hornady, which provides the factory loads for the 450 has no plans on releasing the bullets that are loaded in the cartridge (which are the same ones loaded in the 460 S&W), so you are again held to factory loads.  I have heard that ammo for the 450 will run for around $35-$40 for box/20, maybe more.  I still have not even seen the first upper or box of ammo for this cartridge and they started toting its availability last February.

Beowulf and Socom ammo is still cheaper, there is a lot of reloading data already developed for each, uppers are currently available, and all the components are available for each.  If the 450 Bushmaster is what you want, I hope you the best.  I just question the rounds longevity based on what is already out there and in use.  In my experience, factory ballistic information is usually far reaching and higher than real world tests.  According to the link you provided, you will need special magazines for this round.  Both the Beowulf and Socom will use standard Mil Spec magazines.  This is also another consideration.

Whatever you choose will take anything you will run into in North America.  I chose a Beowulf and love it.  Have considered the Socom, but it was not factory available when I got my upper.  Rock River ARms is now stocking 458 Socom uppers for around $660 and Alexander Arms is selling .50 Beowulf uppers for around the same.



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AR-15's..............They ain't just for prairie Dog's anymore!


 Posted: Mon Dec 31st, 2007 02:44 PM
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Well I looked around on the net last night for rifles and uppers in both. I only found one 50 that had a barrel longer than 16" and the guy wanted over $1100 for just the upper. I am just kicking tires right now anyway. I just bought a house so it will be a few months before I buy anything.



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 Posted: Mon Dec 31st, 2007 05:12 PM
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Not to long ago I was having the same debate with myself, 50 Beowulf, 458, 450.  I did a bunch of research on all three and ended out buying none because I built another .223 instead. 

http://www.teppojutsu.com/458.htm  is one place to look if you are interested in the 458 socom.  They will build them to the specs that you want.  Rock River arms also sells a complete 458 socom upper but I have heard the wait to get one can be up to a year.  That may have improved by now but six months ago that is what I was told by a couple of guys who had ordered them.  http://www.rockriverarms.com/item-detail.cfm?ID=SOC0370X&storeid=1&image=u458a407.gif&CFID=5675598&CFTOKEN=86734126

http://www.50beowulf.com/store/index.htm  The 50 beowulf may not be the best ballistically of the three but I think it is the easiest to get into and reload for.  There is a ton of reloading info out there for this round, and reloading componants are pretty easy to get.  Of the three the 50 would be the most user freindly to get into in my opinion.  Maybe not the best but the easiest, and it still has a lot about it that is desirable.

The 450 bushmaster sounds really good on paper.  But VA Bigbore is right on a lot of stuff he is saying.  Hornady uses a mix of propellants that we as average consumers can not match.  The 375Ruger is the same way.  Almost impossible to get factory ballistics as a reloader.  The bullets that are offered in the 450 are not going to be available to the public.  Another reason that it will be tough to match factory ballistics. 

The conclusion I came to was that if I was willing to wait the 458 socom upper through RRA was the one I would buy.  If I wasn't willing to wait the 50 beowulf was a close second and would fit my needs.  But everyone has to come to there own conclusions just trying to help.



 Posted: Mon Dec 31st, 2007 11:52 PM
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VA Bigbore
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NUshooter wrote: http://www.50beowulf.com/store/index.htm 

NUshooter,

The link you gave is a good one.  This is Lars's site and it is a good one.  Lars was very good at helping me get what I wanted and worked with me to get me my upper ahead of schedule.  He is also endorsed by Alexander Arms as a reputable dealer and an all-around good-guy, (They told me so).  Just understand that he does this part-time and he may take a couple days to get back to you. 

If you want to learn all you could ever learn about the .50 Beowulf, then check out his forum and you will find a wealth of knowledge about anything for this caliber.

http://www.50beowulf.com/bboard/index.php

And if you have any interest at all in the 6.5 Grendel, here is a link to that forum:

http://www.65grendel.com/forum/

I also have a link to the 6.8 SPC forum.  But, beware, they are a bit touchy about people talking about any other cartridge, especially if you compare other rounds to the 6.8:

http://www.68forums.com/

I have been unable to find a forum solely committed to either the .458 Socom or the 450 Bushmaster.  I am sure they are out there, but I haven't found them yet.



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 Posted: Tue Jan 1st, 2008 01:55 PM
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Force_Recon_Marine
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Well from what you guys are saying and from what I have read it looks like the .50 will be the most user friendly and easiest to load for. If I were to get one I would want the longer barrel. Any ideas on a good source for this? Everything I have seen has been 16" barrels. There is a 24" on gunbroker but he wants $1170 plus shipping for just the upper.



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 Posted: Tue Jan 1st, 2008 03:39 PM
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To my knowledge nobody makes Beowulf barrels longer than 18" anymore.  Alexander Arms doesn't even sell uppers longer than 16" to my knowledge.  Extensive testing has shown that the minimal amount of fps lost with the slightly shorter barrel does not hurt accuracy........in fact may help it because the shorter barrel is actually stiffer and doesn't "vibrate" as much as the shorter barrels.  100yd accuracy is outstanding in factory tests, being within 1 moa, and I have achieved a 4-shot group of 0.88" with mine.  That is impressive considering we are talking a 0.5" bullet!!!  IMHO, the "overwatch" or 24" barrels were over rated and overpriced anyway.  All it did was gain another 150 fps and added more recoil.  It did extend the muzzle blast a little bit farther forward, but it isn't that bad to begin with.  I would suggest you "DO NOT" get the muzzle brake if you order a new upper.  You can always add it if you decide you want to, but it will make the blast considerably louder.  I prefer mine without the brake.

Availability..........First I would contact Lars at http://www.Beowulf.com and ask him about availability.  If he is backordered, try either http://www.Midwayusa.com or http://www.cabelas.com.  All of these are good sources, but Lars will give you a touch of personal assistance and be happy to assist with any questions.  Tell him I sent you.  Probably won't get you any better price, but he will know you were referred from a previous customer.

I suggest you try a regular A2 buttstock at first if you are purchasing a lower with the upper, and add a slip on buttpad.  I started out with the ACE skeleton stock and reverted to the A2 stock.  Recoil was not unmanageable with the ACE, but I was able to control it much better and shrink my groups.  I also added weight to my A2 stock by adding .50 muzzleloader balls to the void in the stock.  If you intend to reload I suggest you go ahead and take the plunge and get at least 200 cases.  They are not too hard to find right now, but they have increased in price by about $10/100 from when I bought mine a year ago.

Attachment: Beowulf_Large.jpg (Downloaded 161 times)

Last edited on Tue Jan 1st, 2008 04:00 PM by VA Bigbore



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 Posted: Tue Jan 1st, 2008 04:52 PM
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I didnt want the muzzle brake anyway. I just like the longer barrel. There is a used upper on GB for $500. It would be a good buy. I am just kicking tires right now. It will probably be spring before I buy one.



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 Posted: Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 01:13 AM
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wheezengeezer
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what do you mean by the double base powder or the blend that hornaday uses?



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 01:33 AM
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wheezengeezer wrote: what do you mean by the double base powder or the blend that hornaday uses?

Hornady is using a two-powder blend in all their new cartridges.  This is how the are getting the velocities that they say they are.  One faster and one slower burning to increase continued velocity down the barrel.  Reloaders can't, or better shouldn't, try mixing powders because they don't have the necessary test equipment to account for the pressures and burning rate properly.  Most all factory ammo is loaded with powders that are unavailable to the handloader anyway, this is just another problem with the new rounds coming out as of late.  Yes  you can reload the casing, but you will never "safely" match what the factory is producing.



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 01:38 AM
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wheezengeezer
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what is a double base powder?



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 05:43 PM
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Force_Recon_Marine
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A double base powder is two different powders in the same casing. One could be an extruded powder like Retumbo and the other could be a ball powder. It is just two different powders in the load.



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 09:33 PM
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Force_Recon_Marine wrote: A double base powder is two different powders in the same casing. One could be an extruded powder like Retumbo and the other could be a ball powder. It is just two different powders in the load.
I thought that is what a I said??  :confused:

 

Oh .......... never mind me.......... apparently my post didn't submit last night.  Oh well, we were thinking along the same lines.:lol:

Last edited on Fri Jan 4th, 2008 09:36 PM by VA Bigbore



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 10:44 PM
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It is. I was just saying it a different way. I cant remember for sure but I think some of the AA powders are double base. I think that AA2460 is double base. :confused:



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 Posted: Fri Jan 4th, 2008 11:46 PM
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It may be. I honestly don't know. I have used very little AA powder. I mostly stick to either Hodgdon or IMR powders. I have had very good results with them and never really found the need to look much further. It also helps to keep the powder cabinet in order. :thumbs:



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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2008 12:48 AM
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VA Bigbore wrote: wheezengeezer wrote: what do you mean by the double base powder or the blend that hornaday uses?

Hornady is using a two-powder blend in all their new cartridges.  This is how the are getting the velocities that they say they are.  One faster and one slower burning to increase continued velocity down the barrel.  Reloaders can't, or better shouldn't, try mixing powders because they don't have the necessary test equipment to account for the pressures and burning rate properly.  Most all factory ammo is loaded with powders that are unavailable to the handloader anyway, this is just another problem with the new rounds coming out as of late.  Yes  you can reload the casing, but you will never "safely" match what the factory is producing.

where did you come up with that information?



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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2008 12:53 AM
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wheezengeezer
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Force_Recon_Marine wrote: A double base powder is two different powders in the same casing. One could be an extruded powder like Retumbo and the other could be a ball powder. It is just two different powders in the load.
a single base powder is made from nitrocellulose only.a double base powder is made from nitrocellulose with nitroglycerin added.a duplex load uses 2 different powders,usually a small amount of smokeless topped by a large charge of black. this is from memory,when i get done cuttin up a deer tonight i will look up sources to quote.



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 Posted: Sat Jan 5th, 2008 01:16 AM
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wheezengeezer,

I found the single base and double base powder definitions in the
Speer, Hornady and Sierra manuals. I haven't heard of duplex powder.
Always something new.

GVB



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