Any One Using a 1911 Converted to a 400 Corbon?

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by HK_User, Oct 12, 2012.

  1. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    If so what is your experience?
  2. Hazmat54

    Hazmat54 Monkey+++

    Is it a .45 necked down to .40?
  3. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    Yes it is a necked down 45ACP case, a barrel change is most often all you need. Not a true wildcat but a fun round to have around.
  4. gunbunny

    gunbunny Never Trust A Bunny

    I always wanted to try it, but never got around to it. It would be another caliber to keep after, the same reason I got rid of all my .357 Sig dies and such. .357 Sig is a snappy round, exceeding the speed of 9mm and having a sharper recoil than .40 S&W. That being said, I really wonder how much the .400 CorBon is like it's baby brother.
  5. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    I'll let you know shortly how it it goes.

    Just recently rediscovered a new Briely Stainless Steel Barrel I had misplaced some years back. It is an EDM cut unit and no longer made.

    If I like the 400 in a 1911 I have then I'll bore out a Ruger 10mm cylinder I have so I can use the 400 Corbon in a 10mm Blackhawk.

    According to Guns & Ammo magazine,
    Performance is on a par with the 10 mm, yet pressures are much milder. Factory ammo is loaded to +P .45 levels, but the lighter bullet weights make recoil comparable to .45 hardball loads. Felt recoil is a little sharper but still very controllable.[5]
    Because of its high velocity for a handgun round, the .400 Corbon offers a flat trajectory, which in turn allows for a greater effective range. Ed Sanow also felt recoil was equivalent to 230 gr (15 g) hardball in .45 ACP.[6] In addition, the bottleneck case can function better than a straight case with a wider variety of bullet shapes and sizes and allows the use of fully supported barrels.[3]
    Ballistics fall somewhere between the .40 S&W and the 10 mm Auto.[7] Unlike the 10 mm which operates at a SAAMI maximum of 37,500 psi, the .400 Corbon operates at 29,000 psi (although one source states that the pressure is 26,500 psi),[8][9] much closer to the SAAMI maximum pressures for .45 ACP (21,000 psi), and .45 ACP +P (23,000 psi).[10] Thus the .400 Corbon does not batter[citation needed] converted model 1911 handguns nearly as harshly as the 10 mm Auto, yet performs comparably with up to 180 gr (12 g). bullet weights in handloads.
    The .400 Corbon is a versatile cartridge useful for target shooting, practical shooting competition, self-defense, and handgun hunting of small and medium game. The loads with the lighter bullets are appropriate for small game. Handloaders have worked up safe loads using 180 gr (12 g) bullets at 1,250 ft/s (380 m/s) making it an adequate round for hunting some medium game at close distances.[11]
    For practical shooting competitors, the .400 Corbon makes IPSC Major Power Factor of 175 and surpasses the IDPA Enhanced Service Pistol's Power Floor of 125,000 in most loads using a 5" barrel.[9][12][13] The .400 Corbon also surpasses the Steel Challenge Shooting Association's stop plate's Power Factor floor of 120 and qualifies for metallic silhouette Big Bore Competition under IHMSA rules.[14][15]
    According to Ed Sanow, the 135 gr (8.7 g). JHP penetrated 9 inches (230 mm) of ordnance gelatin and "equals the predicted stopping power of the 10mm 135-grain (8.7 g) JHP loads,"[6] and that the 165 gr (10.7 g). JHP "penetrates an ideal 12.3 inches (310 mm) of gelatin" and "should be a 92-percent stopper, per the Fuller Index."[8]
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    Ammunition and handloading

    Factory made ammunition is available from Cor-Bon in a variety of bullet weights and types: 115 gr (7.5 g) Glaser Safety Slugs; 155 gr (10.0 g) DPX; 135 gr (8.7 g) Pow'RBall; 130, 150, and 165 gr (10.7 g) tradition JHPs; and 165 gr (10.7 g) Performance Match;[16] and is sold by major mail order retailers.[17][18]
    Many shooters, however, handload their own ammunition to save money. Fired .45 ACP cases can be resized and trimmed to handload .400 Corbon cartridges.[19] New brass cases are manufactured by Starline Brass and are readily available directly from them and major mail order retailers such as MidwayUSA.[20][21] According to Starline Brass, "The primer pocket was changed from large pistol primer to small pistol/rifle primer in 12/00. Test results concluded no adverse effect from switching to small primer pocket. Cor-Bon is now recommending Win. small pistol works best and if using small rifle Remington 7½ works the best."[22]
    Lee Precision, Inc. offers a .400 Corbon 3-Die set.[23] Redding Reloading, according to their catalog, offers custom made 3-die sets for the .400 Corbon.[24] Lubricating of the bottleneck case can be avoided when starting with .400 Corbon cases by using a carbide .45 ACP sizing die before using the .400 Corbon sizing die. Using a 5-stage progressive reloading press makes this less of a chore.
    Setback of the bullet in the case—which can cause excessive pressure—can be avoided by using a tight roll crimp and, if necessary, Corbin's Hand Cannelure Tool for jacketed bullets.[25] Since the cartridge headspaces on the shoulder rather than the case mouth, a tight crimp will not cause headspace problems.[4]
    Information on handloads for the .400 Corbon can be found online, in fact the standard .45 has two SAAMI standards: 21000 psi for standard loads, and 25000 psi for .45+ loads. The top full-power factory 400 Corbon loads just slightly exceed the .45+ standard. It should be noted that most of the starting 400 Corbon loads with a 5" barrel still make the IPSC Major Power Factor, even without stressing the caliber's upper limits.[26][27]
    Corbon said that they gave the 400 Corbon to the market and have no patents on this cartridge whatsoever. Eventually, someone with several thousand dollars may even have SAAMI set a standard for it
  6. Hazmat54

    Hazmat54 Monkey+++

    A 10mm Ruger Blackhawk? Where did you find that?
  7. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    It was a production run of 5000, called the Buckeye and is a convertible model.

    "Unlike most other manufacturers, Ruger's 10mm is not a semiautomatic pistol. The Ruger Blackhawk "Buckeye" Convertible is a single-action revolver. Like all Ruger Blackhawks, this 10mm Auto version is strong and ultra-reliable. As this particular Blackhawk is a "Convertible" model it comes with a second cylinder in a different caliber. Both the 10mm Auto and the .38-40 Winchester use .400" caliber projectiles and so either caliber can be fired down the Blackhawk's barrel by simply switching cylinders. "

    I've enjoyed shooting it and I may turn it into a 10mm Mag as well as the 400 CorBon.

    No need to buy a new gun just add another cylinder.
    Silversnake likes this.
  8. gunbunny

    gunbunny Never Trust A Bunny

    [touchdown] [winkthumb] [touchdown]
  9. Hazmat54

    Hazmat54 Monkey+++

    Damn! I want me one of those 10mm/38-40 Blackhawks. Still got my first centerfire revolver, .41 mag Ruger Blackhawk. Learned to reload with that gun. If you could pound it into the cylinder, it shot good. I was lucky also in the limited production run game. I got a Marlin octagonal barrel Cowboy Carbine in .41 mag.
  10. HK_User

    HK_User A Productive Monkey is a Happy Monkey

    As an extra I bought the package from "Buckeye" that included the flap holster by Bianchi and with the Buckeye trademark stamped on the flap of the holster.

    I usually use an open top holster so there is no wear on the Buckeye holster.

    As to first Rugers, mine was a 45 Convertible. very little blue remains on that Ruger as I carried it for years while working or chasing cattle. The holster I bought for that gun was a high ride Bianchi, it now is a well worn dark brown.
  11. Don

    Don Monkey

    re .400 Cor-bon

    a great way to get 10 mm performance, without the high pressures of a 10 mm

    I picked up an Ed brown mfg'd .400 Cor-bon bbl. for my 1911 at a local gun show, for very very few $.... about $25, I believe .... bbl., link and bushing

    fortunately, it dropped in, with no fitting required. ..... and which rescued a 1911 that had a trashy bbl. and I was debating on whether to have it rebarrelled at considerable cost, as I did not feel competent to 'fit' a new bbl. ..... it also proved the gun was ok, and just the bbl. was a p.o.s.

    you can buy brass cases from StarLine Brass ... or make them using .45 a.c.p. brass, and a resizing die ... '+P' cases are recommended, however, I used my stock of Federal .45 a.c.p. brass, and had no issues.

    reloading is a little more of a chore, since the cases must be lubed, due to being bottle necked rather than straight walled....I lubed one at a time, and resized in the .400 CB sizing die. load data is available from a few sources.... including Cor-Bon {,maybe not c-b any longer}

    after resizing, I ran the cases through my progressive press.....

    reloading data from >>>

    400 Corbon Load Data - Handloads.Com

    my only load so far was a 165 gr. SWC hard cast bullet from Oregon Trail Bullets, and 10.5 gr. of VihtaVuori 'N105' powder {burn rate about like Blue Dot}

    it was /is a little too strong for just plinking, or casual target shooting ... and I intend to reduce it to 10.0 gr. N105

    400 Corbon, all bullet weights

    Bullet Powder Weight Powder Velocity OAL Primer Source

    135gr JHP9.7 grVV N3401,400 fps WLP guestWorks great with a compensated 1911

    135gr JHP12.5 grHS61,350 fps WLP guestMore data for this caliber is available at

    135gr JHP9.0 grUniversal Clays1,400 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 8.1 gr

    135gr JHP8.5 grUnique1,330 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 7.7 gr

    155gr JHP8.8 grPowerPistolUnknown1.260" CCI LP guestGood for nice fast manstoppers. A bit warmer than what Cor-Bon has been testing.

    155gr JHP10.3 grAA #51,250 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 9.3 gr

    This data can also be used with 150 gr bullets.

    155gr JHP8.3 grUnique1,300 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 7.5 gr

    This data can also be used with 150 gr bullets.

    155gr JHP14.0 grAA #71,300 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 12.6 gr

    155gr JHP12.0 grVV N1051,250 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 10.8 gr

    This data can also be used with 150 gr bullets.

    165gr FMJ10.2 grBlueDotUnknown1.250" CCI LPM guestGood, fast, and fairly stout. Must use magnum primers for best results.

    165gr JHP10.0 grAA #51,200 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 9.0 gr

    165gr JHP7.6 grUnique1,200 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 6.8 gr

    165gr JHP12.3 grAA #71,250 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 11.1 gr

    165gr JHP11.2 grVV N1051,250 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 10.1 gr ..... only load I used......very strong.......start at 10.0 or 10.1 gr. !!!

    180gr LFP7.0 grUnique1,100 fps WSP CorbonSuggested starting load: 6.3 gr

    180gr JHP7.6 grHercules Herco1,025 fps1.20" SP guestRem #1 1/2 primer.
  12. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Note: Loads recommended are not sanctioned by SurvivalMonkey or the owners or staff, and no responsibility for use or misuse will attach to the site or any of its members. As always, due diligence is required before reloading.
  13. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    Never take ANYTHING you read on the Internet at FACE Value, especially if there are Technical Specs involved, that oif exceeded, may cause Harm, or Death. This includes ReLoading Data, as well as other stuff.... .... YMMV.....
  14. Don

    Don Monkey

    I posted those loads ... and everyone is correct....

    get load data from manuals, and NOT an unknown guy on the internet ! {including me }

    the data displayed is an indication ONLY of the abilities of the .400 Cor-Bon cartridge

    and out of all of them, I only ever used one, as indicated, and that start load was surprisingly strong

    therefore, the other loads are suspect, in my opinion ....I placed those in my post, as I have a digital copy

    and no scanner and printer to make printed data from Load Manuals into digital data {see note below re Sierra Manual #5}

    Among other sources, Sierra Bullets offers free reloading advice, via telephone, and into the evening hours

    I do not have their contact data, however it may be easily found.....

    Also, some of the older reloading manuals have .400 Cor-Bon data......

    such as Sierra's Reloading Data Manual -- Version 'V' { the 5 th } .....which I am fortunate to have on hand

    ... with .400 Cor-Bon load data for Sierra's .40 caliber jacketed bullets from 135 gr. to 180 gr. ......

    use caution when substituting a different brand of Jkt'ed bullet .... start low, and work up ....

    {I use hard cast lead alloy, as jkt'ed bullets are too expensive for me....and I still got a big surprise at the power level of a 'start load' !}

    BTPost and ghrit like this.
  15. Legion489

    Legion489 Rev. 2:19 Banned

    The .400 Corbon is not a great cartridge for the 1911, neither is the .40 SW/10mm Auto. I have the .38-45 conversion and everyone seems to hates it, but go from .356" to .401" and everyone LOVES it. Never understood why. The .400 works best with light (125-165 gr) bullets due to short neck and need to limit pressures. The upper end .400 loads will stress the 1911 as badly as the 10 mm will and has a vicious kick. It will wear you and the gun out in short order and is just another semi-custom/wildcat cartridge (Starline makes all the brass and Cor-Bon loads it). While the barrels are fairly cheap, the dies are not. If you want to shoot lower end .400 ammo, which work fairly well actually, it is just another .40 S&W loaded down to lower .40 pressures and velocities, so why bother? Yes, it can be made from .45 ACP cases, but it a pain (so is .38-45). If you do, use new cases as the used cases crack after one or two loadings and all that work is wasted. Have fun.
  16. Mortblanc

    Mortblanc Monkey

    My experiences were exactly the same. I did the .40 Corbon back in '99 and the recoil and work involved accomplished less than the expected return.
  17. Don

    Don Monkey

    those things ARE true...a bit of a pain to reload....

    my biggest benefit was in 'rescuing' a perfect good electroless Ni. Colt Gov't model {series 70}, which had a totally p.o.s. Colt bbl. ... which threw 'patterns' like a shot gun, and not groups

    although I was kind of experimenting, the almost new .400 Cor-Bon bbl. {by Ed Brown} dropped in perfectly, and suddenly I had a pistol which put them all in one hole, from a sand bag rest. {7 yds.}

    I have other 1911's which get tons more use, but at least now I know a good bbl. in .45 a.c.p. will make that Colt right -- {can't say 'again', as it never was 'right'}


    I did not find making .440 CB ammo so onerous...... I use die sizing wax on my fingers to pickup and place the once fired Federal cases in the press.... and quickly sized/reformed the brass.....

    after that they could go to the 5 station progressive press for completion {prime,. powder, seat, crimp}

    re loads and beating up my gun -- the one load I used was a supposed 'beginning load' .... 10.5 gr. of VihtaVuori N105, under a 165 gr. bullet ...

    it felt like a 10 mm round { I also have a 1911 Delta Elite in 10 mm}

    future loads backed off from that 0.5 grains, to 10.0 gr. N105....still strong, but at the level of a .40 S&W...which I also fire in my Delta Elite with a 40 S&W bbl,

    since 10 mm brass is hard to come by and/or expensive........40 S&W brass is everywhere, and cheap if one buys 'once fired' in quantity, which are often police range pickups
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