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Thread: Magnum Research BFR 50AE???

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Magnum Research BFR 50AE???

    I just got my mail, inside was the 2010-1 sales flyer from CDNN.

    Magnum Research BFR chambered in 50AE (50 Action Express)... stainless, 6.5 or 7.5" barrel, 599.99; I just called, 624 shipped to my FFL.

    Ive been wanting a big more sixgun for a while now.. I looked at the Freedom Arms 500 Wyoming but it was a little too rich for my blood... I like the 500 Special (JRH?) but its not chambered... however for a nominal fee (300-something...) Magnum Research will whip you up a spare cylinder for your BFR chambered to such.

    I dont know about that 50AE being rimless.. headspacing on the mouth!? Taper crimp only? How much trouble would that be? Anyone have one? or a BFR in general who can comment on the quality???

  2. #2
    Boolit Master Doc_Stihl's Avatar
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    Make sure the 50AE has the performance you want. Not much published load data that I've seen on it. (Hogdgon - Accurate online has some)

    $624 for the gun and another $300-something for a cylinder and for about the around the same money you could be in a BFR in .500 SW.
    It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.

    Theodore Roosevelt

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy cptinjeff's Avatar
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    Do you think could fit the 500 linebuagh in the short cylander? I think that would be a perfect combo?

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    Boolit Buddy
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    Hey Doc...

    I see you have a photo posted in the little personal informational sidebar of a BFR... What caliber do you have? ...experiences?

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    Linebaugh wont work...

    A 500 Linebaugh and the 50AE/500JRH/500SW wont interchange due to a difference in the bullet diameters... apparently, the 500 Linebaugh uses .512"(?) diameter bullets whereas the others utilize .500-.501"(~) bullets. Strange, I know.

  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy cptinjeff's Avatar
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    I know its a 512. I just meant that would be my choice for a "big 50" if they could get it into thier shorter cylander version.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    ahhh... I gotcha. I agree, the linebaugh cartridge is a good'un. To be honest, I think any of the foregoing mentioned... 500JRH, 500SW, 500 Linebaugh, would make a big hole, and actually have quite a bit of versatility... I dont care much for the 50AE as it headspaces on the mouth, and with bullets over 300 grains exiting at over 1,000 fps, a good crimp is almost a must. The 500 Wyoming Exp. with its belted case intrigues me, even if I could afford it, I think Id rather just stick with the old tried and true RIM.

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    Boolit Mold WARDOG's Avatar
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by j23 View Post
    Ive been wanting a big more sixgun for a while now.. I looked at the Freedom Arms 500 Wyoming but it was a little too rich for my blood... I like the 500 Special (JRH?) but its not chambered... however for a nominal fee (300-something...) Magnum Research will whip you up a spare cylinder for your BFR chambered to such.
    ... or a BFR in general who can comment on the quality???
    I can comment on the .500 JRH, 50 AE cartridge, the BFR, and the FA 83.
    First off the .500 JRH is a sweet cartridge few have discovered. It is not overkill for a .50 cal.
    In my humble opinion the .500 S&W cartridge and the S&W 'X' frame is the overkill standard. Firing a 350 grain at 1970 fps is basically .45-70 rifle territory. For those of us that have a .45-70 rifle shooting a comparable load knows your shoulder can only handle so much in one day. That also explains why so many Big Bore shooters think shooting the .500 S&W is not all that fun, and is quite a handfull.
    The .500 JRH is currently available from Buffalo Bore Ammo in in two flavors:
    440gr. LFNGC @ listed 950 fps (Actually chrono'ed at 1040 in 7.5" bbl, 3000 elev.)
    425gr. LFNGC @ listed 1350 fps (Actually chrono'ed at 1440 fps in 7.5" bbl)
    Both bullets, LFNGC are from Cast Performance Bullets.

    The 425 cartridge is an ass-kicking palm stinger. When you touch off one of those you know you better hold the gun tighter on the next shot. Think Casull territory but with a heavier bullet.
    The 440 cartridge is a dream to shoot. Slightly more recoil than a full power .44 mag, but with less whip and more of a push.
    I have shot the .500 JRH out of several different guns, both originally manufactured for that cartridge (My BFR) and custom conversions, Freedom arms Mod 83's, Ruger Blackhawk, Super Blackhawk, and Super Redhawks.
    While many shooters believe the .500 JRH is just a shortened .500 S&W, in a sense it is, but the JRH was configured before S&W began developing their 500 S&W special.
    The .500 JRH case is 1.4" with a COAL around 1.8", compare that to the .500 Wyoming Express at 1.37 & COAL around 1.765. They are both pushing basically the same bullet type and weight at similar velocities.
    I really don't understand why Freedom Arms would go through R&D to develop a belted cartridge almost identical in oerformace to the .500 JRH which has been around for 8 years. I suppose gun manufacturers like to see their own headstamp on their ammo. The Ruger .480 was a good cartridge too but it is gone now too. The mistake there was Ruger tried to squeeze 6 chambers in that cylinder making the cylinder walls awfully thin. I made 5-shot .500 JRH conversion cylinders for several .480 Ruger owners and I can say, no matter what Ruger claimed, those cylinder walls were scary thin! Sorry, I got off track...
    Regarding the BFR and the FA83 I would say they are comparable comparing each 'basic' and 'premier' guns. If anything the FA 'premier' seems to be a bit more refined than the high end BFR's. I do not think it is worth the extra $500 though.
    I think the BFR is built a little heavier than the FA, but with standard cylinder length cartridges available to shoot out of either one, you would have to make a mistake handloading a cartridge to blow up either one.
    The .50 AE (Now offered publicly in the BFR) is hard to compare to the .500 JRH because commercial ammo is not loaded past 350 gr. I once had a Desert Eagle in .50 AE. It was a hoot to shoot, but you might as well walk around with a lead pipe it was so heavy. Since the BFR and Desert Eagle are both made by Magnum Research, perhaps that is why the new offering in .50 AE in the BFR.
    Additionally, the BFR, and the FA 83 have an advantage over the S&W 'X' frame in size and weight. With the portly S&W weighing in at around 5 pounds loaded, and the BFR at 4 pounds loaded, that extra pound makes alot of difference at the end of a hunting day.
    If you want a hunting revolver in a .50 caliber, skip the .50 AE and order a BFR in 500 JRH. If you are a handloader, as I suspect everybody on this site is, the JRH cases can be reloaded with .500 S&W RCBS dies, you can load heavier bullets for a wider range of purposes, and several powders work well. Commercial ammo for the .500 JRH is offered through Buffalo Bore and soon through Hornady. (Oops, I hope that is not a secret!)
    One last comment on the .500 Linebaugh. It is actually a .510 diameter bullet. If you live in a state where handguns over .500 are, or will soon be, illegal, it is just a matter of time until DOJ does the math and makes that cartridge unavailable in that state.
    I hope this helped.

    WARDOG

  9. #9
    Boolit Master tek4260's Avatar
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    I have a BFR in 475L. It seems to be quality but it is very "bulky" compared to my Rugers. But it is the cheapest way to get into big bores that I have found.

    As far as the 50AE, I had one in a DE and was not impressed. Loaded with 325's it is running almost the exact same speed as my 45 Colt loaded with 325's. Any advantage from the larger diameter bullet of the 50AE is lost to me by the bulk of the handgun that launches it.

    There is also a discussion on the CDNN special 50AE's over at sixguns.com.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    WARDOG, excellent first post! Welcome to the site.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    I have one, but not shot it a whole lot. 44mag in a S&W is a pussycat for me, but the 50ae in the BFR is plenty of stomp. I think you will enjoy it.

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    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks Wardog...

    I appreciate the lengthy and informative post! Honestly, after doing the research, the only reason I was considering the 50AE in the BFR was to move to TO the 500 JRH.. Magnum Research lists the 50AE as just over $1k.. standard price, CDNN is listing it for $599! The 500 JRH from Magnum Research's custom shop STARTS at around $1500.00!! So for $599 for the gun, and around $400 for the caliber conversion (extra cylinder...) Ill be just under $1k.. saving me some change for basically the same gun. The only think I may change about the BFR itself is lobbing off the barrel from 6.5" to 5.5", or even 4-5/8" inches for easier carry. Im 5-9", about 175 lbs.. carrying a 6.5" sixgun may be a little awkward for me? Anyone have any experiences with the barrel length issue?

    Speaking of cylinder conversions...

    Wardog wrote, " I made 5-shot .500 JRH conversion cylinders for several .480 Ruger owners " ...so I am assuming you are a 'smith. Do you still do sixgun work? If so, maybe I could contact you regarding some that I have?

  13. #13
    Boolit Mold WARDOG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j23 View Post
    I appreciate the lengthy and informative post! Honestly, after doing the research, the only reason I was considering the 50AE in the BFR was to move to TO the 500 JRH.. Magnum Research lists the 50AE as just over $1k.. standard price, CDNN is listing it for $599! The 500 JRH from Magnum Research's custom shop STARTS at around $1500.00!!
    ... Im 5-9", about 175 lbs.. carrying a 6.5" sixgun may be a little awkward for me? Anyone have any experiences with the barrel length issue?
    Speaking of cylinder conversions... I am assuming you are a 'smith. Do you still do sixgun work? If so, maybe I could contact you regarding some that I have?
    That CDNN price for the BFR at $599 is either awsome or a misprint. That would be hard to pass up!
    The BFR revolver you would be getting from MR would not be a standard revolver. For that money, chambered in the .500 JRH, you would be getting a nicely tuned, fine fit & finished BFR, the quality of which would be better than the standard model. There won't be a need for a trigger job, better sights, etc.
    I am your size and the 7.5" BFR works fine for me, but my hands may be a little larger than for my size.
    As far as a gunsmith, I don't call myself one. I make gun parts, over 3 dozen cylinder conversions, single and double action, with and withour extracter stars (difficult) mostly out of EDT150 and now almost all out of 17-4 PH Stainless which is very tough, and we can now blacken the SS to match bluing. I also make cut rifled barrels from scratch and rebores from shot out barrels. I am not a gunsmith for the fact that I do not do the final fitting, filing etc. The guys in the shop, Jack Huntington's shop that it, does the assembly. JRH Advanced Gunsmithing.
    If you are interested in six-gun work, call Jack Huntington, JRH Advanced Gunsmithing at (530) 268-6877 and tell him what you want. The shop is busy right now so there may be a wait.
    I can send or post some pics of work we do if you would like.

    WARDOG RENO

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    Wardog...500 JRH Brass?

    Wardog, I am getting everything in line regarding that BFR... I am buying it, and shipping it directly off to Magnum Research (whom I already called...) and having them make(?)/fit a 500 JRH cylinder to it.

    I attempted to locate dies and brass to have here for when the conversion arrives... to no avail.. I heard Corbon and Buffalo bore load for the 500 JRH, but neither lists it on their websites?

    I attempted to jump on JRH gunsmith website, and it is down?? Not sure what is going on there?

    I am not sure about cutting down 500 S&W brass to 500 JRH, as some forum posters are indicating that the 500 JRH has a different RIM?? I was under the impression that the 500 JRH was simply the 500 S&W, just cut down?

    any insight..?

  15. #15
    Boolit Mold WARDOG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j23 View Post
    I attempted to locate dies and brass to have here for when the conversion arrives... to no avail.. I heard Corbon and Buffalo bore load for the 500 JRH, but neither lists it on their websites?
    Corbon and Buffalo Bore both sell loaded .500 JRH. I don't know why it is not listed on their website. I am looking at boxes of Buffalo Bore on my desk as I write this. Call Buffalo and ask them for it. Jack Huntington also has cases of it at his shop. I'm sure he would be happy to take your order. (530) 268-6877 PST.
    Both Hornady and Grizzly Ammunition are also working on loads for commercial sale.
    As far as dies, I use RCBS .500 S&W dies.
    Starline supplies brass for the Buffalo Bore ammo, and Jack may have that also. I have a bunch but it is for load development.

    Quote Originally Posted by j23 View Post
    I attempted to jump on JRH gunsmith website, and it is down?? Not sure what is going on there?
    The JRH webiste is down, I don't know why. Try it again tomorrow.

    Quote Originally Posted by j23 View Post
    I am not sure about cutting down 500 S&W brass to 500 JRH, as some forum posters are indicating that the 500 JRH has a different RIM?? I was under the impression that the 500 JRH was simply the 500 S&W, just cut down?
    I don't think you need to resort to cutting down S&W brass. The rim size is diffferent with the S&W (S&W .556 dia. / JRH .545 dia.). There is plenty of brass around and I can make sure you get some.
    There are many bullets to choose from and if you are a big game hunter,
    Kelye Schlepp, from Belt Mountain Enterprises, is producing new “PUNCH PRESS BULLETS”, named that because they punch right thru big game. They are a machine turned brass alloy and lead filled. They are lsightly lighter than hardcast but very accurate due to their balance.

    If you don't get any results getting ammo or brass contact me and I will take care of it.
    ONE LAST THING: Jim Tertine (sp?) from the BFR side of Magnum Research told me that the .500 JRH is his favorite caliber and he hunts everything including porcupines (!) with his .500 JRH revolver. That being said, he may be just a bit biased to that caliber. As I understand it the .500 JRH chamberings may be a regular on the BFR menu by the end of the year, which will also make the cartridge more popular and therefore picked up by more ammunition manufacturers / suppliers.

    WARDOG
    Last edited by WARDOG; 03-15-2010 at 11:22 PM. Reason: 'Cause I'm a tard on the phone #

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    Lots of good replies here. I just wanted to add that I have actually owned a Freedom Arms 555 in .50 AE. I never could get it to stop pulling the bullets with cast loads, and I eventually sold it to a collector because of that problem.

    I do feel the .50 AE is a good cartridge.

    Wardog is right about the difference in quality from MRI's shop. My first .475 BFR had a problem where the cylinder would unlock and rotate every once in a while under recoil (similar to what the .500 S&W does with the heavy 440 gr. loads). They called me at first and said there wasn't a problem. I told them shoot it some more. They called me back and said, "yep, you were right, we'll take care of it."

    They ended up sending me a brand new gun, and boy was it slick!
    Last edited by frankenfab; 03-16-2010 at 03:15 PM. Reason: more info

  17. #17
    Boolit Mold WARDOG's Avatar
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    I checked for ammo today at JRH's shop. Plenty of ammo in stock (Buffalo Bore) and thousands of virgin brass. Jack will ship. I can't give you prices because I get it at cost.
    The reason the .500 JRH is not on Buffalo's website is because the shop was just selling it. That will change soon, with Magnum Reasearch selling it from their site, and when other loaded rounds are approved by Jack it will be on other ammo websites.
    We don't want to put out an inaccurate cartridge and get a bad name for accuracy, regardless of who is loading it, or who is manufacturing the gun.

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