First Look: Federal Ammunition HammerDown .45 Colt

posted on June 11, 2024
45 Colt Hammerdown

Federal Ammunition’s HammerDown is currently the industry’s only ammunition product line specifically designed for optimal cycling and overall performance in the lever-action rifle platform. Now including seven total cartridge options, the company has debuted a 250-grain .45 Colt cartridge.

“We are thrilled to add the .45 Colt, designed for lever-action rifles, to our HammerDown lineup. This is another popular straight-wall cartridge that hunters and shooters are actively seeking out,” said Federal Ammunition handgun product manager Chris Laack. “One of the enhanced design features found in all HammerDown ammo is that we chamfered the front face of the case rim on all the nickel-plated cases. This removes any sharp edges to increase the reliability of feeding. All the benefits HammerDown delivers will greatly enhance your shooting experience.”

45 Colt HammerDown Bullet

The velocities of HammerDown are customized to produce superior ballistics and terminal performance through lever-action barrel lengths. The construction of the molecularly bonded soft-point bullets has also been adjusted to optimize accuracy and expansion at those velocities. The geometry of each round’s case, bullet and cartridge ensures flawless cycling through tubular magazine and typical lever-action feeding systems.

The inclusion of .45 Colt is a natural line extension for Federal HammerDown. One of the famous 19th-century cartridges that has made the jump from black to smokeless powder, .45 Colt (also known as .45 Long Colt) was initially developed in 1872 for use in the Colt Single Action Army. Despite going on to serve as a military cartridge from 1873 to 1892, and the widespread adoption that came along with this, the lever-action Winchester 1873 was never chambered for the round, in part due to the cartridge's thin, folded-head rim. As the casing was designed primarily for use with an ejector rod, this rim style proved incredibly unsuited for use with an extractor. There was also significant back blast in its black-powder format, due to its straight-wall design and large powder charge. All this meant that there were not lever-action offerings for the rifle widely available until the latter half of the 20th century, after the cartridge adopted a new, solid-head design with a deeper groove at the rim. As such, it is high time this underrated hunting cartridge be fully optimized for the platform. 

HammerDown is now offered in .45-70 Government, 444 Marlin, .30-30 Winchester, .357 Magnum, .327 Federal, .44 Remington Magnum and .45 Colt. Learn more about it and all other products from Federal at federalpremium.comMSRP: $39.99


Melvin Forbes Obit
Melvin Forbes Obit

Melvin Forbes, Designer of the Famous Model 20 Mountain Rifle, Dies at 77

The world of mountain hunters lost a true pioneer on June 5, 2024.

Hunter Detained Overseas for 11 Weeks Returns Home

A hunter detained in the Turks and Caicos over ammunition forgotten in his bag was given a fine and a suspended sentence earlier today, allowing him to finally leave the country.

Head to Head: .243 Winchester vs. 6.5 Creedmoor

The .243 Winchester and 6.5 Creedmoor short-action cartridges are both very efficient and manageable, but which is the better choice for a hunter? We take a closer look at the pros and cons of each.

Davidson's Adds Kimber Manufacturing

Davidson’s firearms, ammunition, optics and accessories wholesalers has announced the addition of Kimber Manufacturing to its firearms product line category.

An Offseason Plan to Improve Your Wingshooting Skills

Were you dissatisfied with your shotgunning skills last hunting season? If you answered, “yes,” now is the time to devise a strategy to up your game.

SCOTUS Annuls ATF Rule on Bump Stocks

Last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) unlawfully exceeded its authority by classifying bump stocks as machineguns.


Get the best of American Hunter delivered to your inbox.