577 Nitro Express 3"

Papabear55

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Hey there, I'm in the process of getting my ruger no1 in 458 lott rebarrelled to 577 ne 3". I was curious if anyone had any opinions on bullet choice or reloading data? My current plan is to use the 750gr woodleigh softs at 2050fps but I'm always open to other suggestions if anyone has any. Intended game currently is just moose and brown bear but i plan on going for water buffalo and cape buffalo sometime in the future.
 

Russ-F

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Hello,

I used to own a .577” double rifle (the less popular 2-3/4" version). You’ll obviously have far greater flexibility in loads used than I did as with a single barrelled gun you don’t have concerns of regulating two barrels to shoot together. I would still recommend Graeme Wrights book ‘Shooting the British Double Rifle’ though as he’s got some loads listed which duplicate ‘factory’ ballistics & perhaps more importantly there’s advice on loading a large case with modern powders which are far denser than Cordite. The use of the foam filler wads as sold by Kynamco is recommended.


I used to use my own (double rifle barrel friendly) swaged copper jacketed bullets for range use but without a doubt in your Ruger any of the Woodleighs will do a superb job. You could use the 650 grain Woodleighs if you wanted something lighter for moose & bear.


It’s years since I sold my Ruger No.1 in 7x57 so I’m having difficulty recalling the dimensions of the action but a .577 must be a ‘tight fit’ in there!


Regards

Russ
 

IvW

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Rather chamber to 500 NE 3" or 31/4", 577 NE is just too much and is gonna be uncontrollable in a Ruger nr.1.

You will also have better performance from the 500 NE.
 

Papabear55

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I
Rather chamber to 500 NE 3" or 31/4", 577 NE is just too much and is gonna be uncontrollable in a Ruger nr.1.

You will also have better performance from the 500 NE.
Is this due to the recoil?
 

IvW

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I

Is this due to the recoil?

Recoil is just one of the factors. In a falling block you will need to make up some weight to keep the recoil manageable which will end up in a rifle being muzzle heavy and not balanced.

Ruger Nr 1's are known for having more perceived felt recoil than other rifles.

577 NE is best suited to a double rifle.

500 NE outperforms the 577 NE in the field and is much more manageable than the 577 NE.

Do yourself a favour and go and shoot a 577 NE with full power loads before you build one and then decide.

The recoil is brutal and will be more so in a single barrel Ruger nr 1. A 750 grain bullet in a too light rifle, apart from the brutal recoil, will also want to"twist" out of your hands when fired. Forget about any back up shots as you will have your hands full just hanging on to the rifle.
 

Papabear55

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Recoil is just one of the factors. In a falling block you will need to make up some weight to keep the recoil manageable which will end up in a rifle being muzzle heavy and not balanced.

Ruger Nr 1's are known for having more perceived felt recoil than other rifles.

577 NE is best suited to a double rifle.

500 NE outperforms the 577 NE in the field and is much more manageable than the 577 NE.

Do yourself a favour and go and shoot a 577 NE with full power loads before you build one and then decide.

The recoil is brutal and will be more so in a single barrel Ruger nr 1. A 750 grain bullet in a too light rifle, apart from the brutal recoil, will also want to"twist" out of your hands when fired. Forget about any back up shots as you will have your hands full just hanging on to the rifle.
It seems i may have to go the 500 NE route then unfortunately. It'll quite some time before i can afford a double rifle unfortunately
 

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It seems i may have to go the 500 NE route then unfortunately. It'll quite some time before i can afford a double rifle unfortunately

If I had one built on a falling block action I would build the 500 NE 3 1/4", it operates at lower pressure than the 3 " and you could up the velocity if desired.
 

Papabear55

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If I had one built on a falling block action I would build the 500 NE 3 1/4", it operates at lower pressure than the 3 " and you could up the velocity if desired.
The dies and brass would be harder to obtain though, i would think anyhow. Havent had a chance to look yet
 

Brian

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I have killed 4 cape buffalo with my single shot break open .577NE with a 26.5 " barrel. Weight is 12 lbs with no scope.
My favourite loads which I used this year in Africa on two cape buffalo are, 700 gr. Peregrine Bush Master bullet over 114 grains of N550 for 1700 fps. I have a video clip. the old buffalo tried to take a step and fell on it's chin. Shoulder shattered. recovered bullet on far side under the skin.
Also, 600 gr Raptor Cutting Edge Bullet over 120 grains of N550 for 1900 fps. Old Buffalo reacted like it was electrocuted.
Use filler was for above loads.
Recoil is not nearly as bad as the ladies above suggest. ( Some of the above posts are just incorrect. I'm a 73 year old with bad posture and weak arms. If I can learn to have fun with a .577NE any one can.) Learn how to shoot it. Hold firmly, pull into shoulder, relax and let it roll your shoulder back. Don't fight it. ( It only hurts on the range. In the field it is very manageable. I have done 28 round in 2 hours at the range. That was hard.)
High velocity is not needed on the 577. But for fun, next trip to Africa I will increase both the above loads about 100 fps.

The 577NE in a Ruger #1 is a very good idea. ( would leave the barrel bull or blank. Rifle is supposed to weight at least 12 lbs. Can epoxy 1/2 lb.lead shot into a cavity in the fore end to get more weight. Holds the muzzle down in recoil.)

Trust me. The .577NE is very satisfying to shoot.
For moose and bear 650 grains is max weight needed. 600 grains is great. You can stay below 2000fps. It will roll that size of animal over.
For Water Buff and Cape buff 600 grain bullet is fine but a 700 gr. solid is sure satisfying. ( wide flat meplat of 67 % gets the best penetration which you want on Buffalo. See Cutting Edge Bullets. Best advice with a big bore is use the highest quality bullets that you can get. I use solids for the first shot or CEB Raptors if I am not shooting through bush. Some like softs for the first shot.

My first year with it in Africa I cast hard bullets. 22 bhn. , 700 grains, 1650 fps. They worked like an expensive solid. The PH called the rifle "Mike Tyson". ) If someone has not killed dangerous game with a 577NE I would not listen to a word they say about it. Build that rifle!
 

tarbe

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Brian - I really enjoyed reading your hunt report!


Tim
 

tarbe

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Brian

Sorry if I missed it...what was the BHN of the boolits you used on your buffalo?

Did you mix up your own alloy, or did you buy from Roto Metals or some such?
 

Brian

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Howdy, I mixed it up myself. After heat treating ( Kitchen oven to cold water.) it tested with the cheap, aggravating Lee tester at 22 BHN.
I knew nothing about casting bullets and went through a near vertical learning curve in 2017. I got all my help off of the site Cast Boollits. There some real good guys on that site and a couple off jerks. One great guy taught me how to mix up a hard, non brittle alloy. I bet the thread is still on there.

I'm told that the trick with making a very hard bullet is to put enough copper and tin in it to make it non brittle. As I remember. I kind of forget this stuff because I made an a life time supply in 2017 and the never casted again. ( I'm so old I can hide my own Easter eggs) You have to melt tin and copper sulphate together in a separate batch, if I remember correctly. Hopefully the thread is on CastBoollits.
They are sure hard strong bullets. Very little deformation on 3 cape buffalo. All one shot each.

However, I don't think that they have to be that hard, even for buffalo. BHN of 18 might be plenty.

Have you committed to .557 NE.? I love mine, but I killed three cape buffalo this Sept. with a 50-110 Winchester in a switch barrel for my single shot. It is a custom chambered 50-110. It is a true .500 cal like the .500 S&W. I killed the buffalos using 410 grain Cutting Edge Bullet Raptors at 1940 fps. It took one bullet each in the chest and all three buffalo went no more than 10 yards. I think that in a Ruger #1 you could easily add 250 fps. My single shot will not take much pressure. I also had CEB Solid 450 grain bullets for the follow up shot but each buffalo fell over before I could use them.

I may do a Ruger #1 in this cartridge. It is a real hammer with good bullets. The PH said that the 50-110 with the above load killed quicker than his 458 Lott.

Here is my recipe for my cast buffalo bullet. ( remember the Tin and Copper sulphate are melted together in a separate pot and then poured into the lead melt. As I remember copper sulphate is the same as root killer. It' too complicated for me to recall. Sorry. Better check on Castboollits site.)

-10 lbs of lyman # 2
- 6 lbs of pure lead.
- 1 oz. tin + Copper Sulphate.
- 3 lbs Hard lead shot ( for the antioney.)

I think that there are easier ways of getting a "hard enough" cast bullet. The guys on Cast Bolts will know. Brian
 

Brian

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tarbe, Oops. I just realized that I mixes you up with Pappabear55. Some of my last post will not be relevant to you. Sorry. I better find my glasses. Brian
 

Papabear55

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tarbe, Oops. I just realized that I mixes you up with Pappabear55. Some of my last post will not be relevant to you. Sorry. I better find my glasses. Brian
I havent committed to the 577 yet due to a lack of finances, cheapest conversion i found was $2k. May end up getting a 585 hubel expreas instead for a bit cheaper
 

Brian

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Papabear55,
There are a couple of posts on the 585HE from a bright guy on the Accurate Reloading forum, in the Big Bore section. The post there from "grampahubel" is from Ed Hubel, as you may know. Have you had chance to talk to him about the cartridge? It sounds like a great choice. I have read that Ed had/has brass for it. Ed did the gunsmithing on my H&R Handi Rifle ,577 NE. ( "24 gauge from Hell") He is great old guy. ( he might be younger than me, come to think of it. chuckle.) He is a real innovator.
 

Brian

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Papabear55,
PS. "Lack of funds.." I hear you. When I was your age I couldn't even afford to pay attention!
 

ChrisG

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I havent committed to the 577 yet due to a lack of finances, cheapest conversion i found was $2k. May end up getting a 585 hubel expreas instead for a bit cheaper
If finances are an issue for you, I would shy away from any of the big NE cartridges. 20 pieces of brass with good bullets (like woodleighs) will likely be close to 10% of the total conversion cost. If it were me, I would want to have at least 60-80 pieces of brass and enough bullets for all of them. Plus dies are like $250 new for these calibers. Anything over 50 cal gets really expensive really fast.
 

rookhawk

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The idea of a .577NE in a Ruger #1 is sheer madness, as some of the above have already stated.

I ran the math, in a Ruger #1 a .577NE is roughly going to produce 150-180lbs of felt recoil. Its 120lbs of felt recoil or more in a 13-14lb double rifle. Totally unmanagable. The gun wasn't engineered to withstand those forces. The throughbolted stock will be the first to fail. Selling it will be near impossible thereafter as its so misplaced.

A 450/400, .416 Rigby, or a .470NE would probably be the practical/functional/utility limitation of a Ruger #1 in my opinion. A .577NE isn't really good for too many applications. The primary application is for elephant where it would give an actual difference in performance over a .470 or .500 which are both sufficient in their own right. But then, if you're going elephant hunting you're probably not going to use a single shot anyway. So ignoring that use case, we're talking about Buffalo/Hippo and smaller. For hippo, small bores with brain shots are plenty sufficient. So that leaves buffalo. The accuracy improvements and flatter shooting make the 450/400, .404J, and the .416 the quintessential calibers for that duty. In that case, you can spend $1500 on a brand new or lightly used Ruger #1 in any of those three calibers. (the 404J would be a custom actually).
 

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