Cogswell & Harrison .450 NE owners?

Discussion in 'Double Rifles' started by Certus, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    Calling any Coggie owners here who may have a .450 3 1/4” Nitro.

    Need to know: is your gun the 440gr or the 480gr proofing? If 440gr, any chance of sharing your load data?

    I’ve been using a load the original owner gave me - 89gr AR2213SC, 1gr Dacron and 440gr bullet. Chrono’d at 2100fps. (*disclaimer, what works for me may not work for you.*) but I’ve heard troubling stories about Dacron so an somewhat concerned by its use.

    Also what’s the go with Trailboss? I’ve heard mixed opinions - some say it’s fine others say steer clear? I’ve tried it with 350gr cast bullets and it seems fine.. but I’d like more experienced advice.

    Cheers,
    Troy.
     
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  2. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    No one?
     
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  3. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Certus, sorry I can’t help you with your 450, but I have had a bit of experience with Trailboss in other cartridges up to 375 H&H and Dacron in ultra light loads years ago.

    Trailboss works well for light low recoiling loads in my 375. As you probably already know, it is a high bulk powder which takes up lots of space, so no Dacron is needed as a filler in my experience. I got it from Hodgdon Powders Webster.

    Years ago I used Dacron as a filler for light loads of Unique powder in rifle cartridges which I found in a 1950s American Rifleman magazine. Example: 16 gr of unique behind a 110 FMJ carbine bullet in a 30-06. It was a pain in the behind stuffing the Dacron to take up the space and press the powder against the primer! Eventually I quit after a newer article came out (I believe it was in Shooting Times Mag) using the Dacron and it seemed to not make any difference in the ignition of the unique pistol powder. I never had a “hang” fire, but again it was a pistol powder.
     
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  4. degoins

    degoins New Member

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    I don't own a Coggie, but I do own 2 .450 doubles, a nitro and a black. I love Trailboss for single barrel rifles, but I've had no luck using it in the doubles. Velocities are too low to regulate. IMR4198 and Dacron have been working for me with both doubles using bullets in the 300 to 350 grain weights.
     
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  5. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Ken Owen in Moscow, TN is who you need to speak with. He might even take a job finding the regulating load for you...if it can’t be found, he is one of maybe 3 people on the continent that could re-regulate the barrels properly.

    be nice to him...he is retired, which means he only takes jobs he wants to for very polite people!
     

  6. HWL

    HWL AH Fanatic

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    I am using Trail Boss, 350 gr Woodleigh soft point round nose and 350 gr Speer soft point flat nose.

    My load is substitude for a nitro for black powder load.... good for planes game, not a charge stopper.


    HWL
     

  7. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Some loads:

    450 3-1/4" Nitro Express
    *Source: G. Wright Shooting the British Double Rifle

    Woodleigh 480gr RN SN - All with Fed 215 primers - All with Bell cases - All with 26" barrels

    H4350 92gr - 2125fps
    H4831sc 98gr - 2000fps
    H4831sc 101gr - 2050fps
    H4831sc 102gr - 2085fps
    R19 97gr - 2015fps
    R19 99gr - 2075fps
    R19 100gr - 2120fps
    IMR4831 95gr - 2125fps
     

  8. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    Thanks rookhawk and others.

    Rook - my rifles a Certus like you once had. 440gr is the load it has on the barrel. Do you think the Woodleigh 480gr’s at 2000fps would be safe to shoot from it?
     

  9. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Ummm...warning will robinson!

    Most CERTUS rifles were 450-400 3" Nitro Express. Some were 450/400 3-1/4" rifles. You'd need to check the chamber to comfirm. That is NOT the same as a 450 Nitro Express 3-1/4". !!!

    If you do the loads posted above for the 450NE in a certus...you'll die or worse!
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019 at 3:24 PM

  10. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    The regulating load for a 450/400 3 inch with AR2213SC per G. Wright is:

    400gr woodleigh bullet
    80gr of powder
    Fed 215 primer
    Bell Brass
    1965fps out of a 24" barrel (a certus with a 25-27" barrel may have more FPS)

    The regulating load for a 450 Nitro Express 3-1/4" with AR2213SC per G. Wright is:

    480gr woodleigh bullet
    95gr powder
    cci 250 primer
    1900fps out of a 26" barrel

    You're shooting a 440gr bullet and 89gr of powder?!?! What caliber is your CERTUS?! Are you 100% sure?
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019 at 3:26 PM

  11. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Hmm. Just found this quote on the web, maybe you have a a 450 3-1/4"? Didn't know any were made as such:

    Cogswell & Harrison made the Certus in a wide range of calibers from the diminutive “Rook” calibers for small game up to the 450/400 3¼” Nitro Express and the 450 Nitro Express. Surviving Certus big game rifles are mostly chambered for the 450/400 3¼” but any Certus rifle is going to be a rare bird. Not a great many were made and consequently not many survive to the present day.
     

  12. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    I’ve been shooting my rifle for 4 years, but with 440gr bullets. It IS a .450. These rifles are my passion. I’ve catalogued about 20 so far, and have a 50/50 rate of .400 and .450 bore rifles. Trust me, it’s a .450. Yours was a .400, this one is a .450. Red Leg on here has a .450 as well.

    Edit to add: I wish I had of bought your .400 :( Let me know if you see it for sale again.

    Edit to add again: going to use a 350gr Woodleigh at 2000fps using a NFB load - pressure should be minimal and the 440gr are a bit much for pigs and foxes lol.

    [​IMG]
     

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    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019 at 4:13 PM

  13. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Hi Certus,

    I just dug all over looking for a load. Taylor doesn't have a 440gr, nor does Wright, nor does A-Square.

    So there is no default load for the Certus in 450express.

    So I dug around and found the original ICI 500 Nitro-For-Black load from 1926. 440gr bullet, 28" barrel, 1900fps with a 55gr load of cordite. I'm going to infer that 65gr cordite with same 440gr bullet in your 450 Express Certus is going to be faster than the load I just mentioned, but I don't know what the change in bullet diameter does to that assumption. So you're probably right that a load needs to be 2050fps, maybe 2100fps to regulate properly with the increased cordite specified.

    You'd have to do some really careful load development to get it perfect, but at least its not a double so not as critical for regulating one barrel as for two. You could also ask Cogswell if they have the load...i'm 100% sure they had a "certus" load and in fact I'm certain I've seen brass that was headstamped "certus" for the gun. (on a spanish language cartridge collector site). If you can get Cogswell to give you load details not of max, but of what was "ideal" you might be able to get a modern copy made. I know Ken Owen has used IMR3031 powder at a particular ratio to duplicate Cordite in some calibers.

    If the crux of your issue at present is solely the Dacron stuffing is bothering you, there is another easy fix. (most of these big NE loads require dacron stuffing because we can't get the Federal 216m primer the factory uses for ignition, thus we use 215m and dacron to do it) Have you tried the Kynoch foam "wads" that are fully approved for this function? Bottom of page: http://www.traderkeith.com/products.html

    Another option, how about the Nitro-For-Black loads that used 365gr bullets? Problem is...ALL of them require dacron filler, wool plugs, or cork wads which was the problem you wanted to cure!
     
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  14. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Interesting rifles. I'll cheerfully confess that I do not shoot mine.
     

  15. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    Heya Rook,

    Wow, excellent answer! Thanks for taking the time to reply with such detail. The factory ammo you talk of, in the catalogue there are 2 loads they sold for these rifles. In the .450 it was the 65 cordite 440 bullet for the heavy load, but they say this second load is also fine - 52gr cordite 365 bullet at 2000fps. Since I can’t get this weight I think I’ll just go with 350’s, close enough..? I appreciate the time you’ve taken in this thread.

    Red Leg - let me know when your ready to move yours on, I’ll gladly give it love, care and use :D These rifles are my passion and if someone offered me one of these or a double I’d choose the Certus. (And think I’m an idiot because I could sell the double to buy many Certus lol)
     
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  16. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    I can’t edit the above post - if Dacron is fine I’ll happily keep using it. I’ve just heard stories of chamber ringing and am sort of scared of it.

    I’m currently trying to source the Kynoch foam fillers.
     

  17. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    The 350gr bullets, woodleigh roundnose softnose part# 30A is the bullet you want. Opens at 1800-2000fps velocities. It was originally made for the 450 Black Powder Express. It sounds perfect for your certus if you can build a nice 2100fps-2150fps load, whatever it takes to regulate with your iron sights.
     

  18. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    The ring bulging has a lot of different theories from a.) Doesn't exist, b.) it was erosion and corrosion, c.) it was a load without dacron causing a concussive effect, d.) it was a load of too little powder by volume causing the damage.

    Gramm Wright in his book Shooting the British Double Rifle is a big believer in dacron stuffing, foam wads, and cork overcards. He also believes in ringing of the chamber/bulging as a real phenomenon. He doesn't believe its because of the stuffing or the loads I posted in this thread from his book. His recipes are also valid/duplicated in the Woodleigh reloading guide, the authoritative data for double rifle cartridges at this point.
     
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  19. Certus

    Certus AH Senior Member

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    Again, incredible responses.

    You’re mitigating my worries and I like that, ha! I have Graham’s book and have read it but I think I need to re-read it.

    What’s your thoughts on ringing?

    Hey @Red Leg can you get a picture of your rifles sling swivels/mounts? My rifle has a replacement rear one which looks terrible. It also has a replacement buttstock which I suspect is from a shotgun (it has ducks on it) which I want to replace with a red Silvers pad.
    Oh, and a close up of your front sight?

    Work mine needs done:

    1. New Buttpad
    2. Rear sling mount replacement
    3. Replacement 300m sight leaf - mines missing.
     

  20. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Yep, you need a silvers pad...easy one to solve.

    Rear sling mount, you need to custom make the stud sadly...trust me, they aren't for sale anywhere. Here's a link, examine the B&W picture halfway down: https://revivaler.com/cogswell-harrison-certus-big-game-rifle/ Originally, they weren't designed to work with sling swivels at all, they were used with slings that were canvas web with rawhide strop tails on them. You'd wet the rawhide and tie it on and when dry...it was really on there. Benefit was absolute silence. Detriment was slow installation and removal. Better picture of both pieces of what you need: http://www.hallowellco.com/sling_eye.htm

    Replacement sight blade is going to be tricky work, specifically getting the texture, wear, lines, and engraving all matchy-matchy. You'll spend a shocking fortune on this one. I'd be prone to put a filler plate in its vacant spot since a 300 yard sight is vestigial anyway.
     

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