I have been reading the many posts on this forum about the .44 mag and .45 Colt as well as the S&W N Frame and the Ruger Redhawk. I like both guns even though I have yet to get my Redhawk revolver and I like both calibers. Back in 1973 I bought my first Ruger Blackhawk .44 Mag. with a 7.5 " barrel, maybe it was a Super Blackhawk. To big a gun for me to carry around so I bought a 6" S&W later that year. Sold it and got a 4" S&W. Over the years I went through several more S&W N Frames with 2.5, 4, and 5" barrels and one more 4.5 barreled Blackhawk. One of the Ruger's had a problem with the cylinder turning and one of the Smith's had a out of spec. cylinder, both were fixed and sold. The 5" 629 Classic was the easiest for me to shoot, it was still to heavy and I wanted some thing lighter. A long time ago I ordered a bunch of 250 grain LBT's from Veral Smith when he was doing business out of Washington state, that and 2400 powder saw much use in all the guns. When I first started hand loading the .44 mag. I always ended up with what the book said was a max load, I was a beginner. During those years I also went to 300 grain LBT's because they were there and by golly I needed to "man up".
Several years ago I had the local gun smith pull the 5" lugged barrel from the 629 Classic and fit a slim 4" Mountain Gun barrel on it. I also settled on the 280 grain LBT's because I thought the heck with the "man up" thing. I still have a couple of box's of 300 grain LBT's, don't know when I will ever use them. Any way, for me, I have what I consider a good packing, powerful combo that I can shoot reasonably well. Yup, I know there are more powerful .44 mag. loads available, have fun with them.
I have never been able to shake the urge for a 5 shot .45 Colt Ruger Redhawk with a 4" barrel put together by Hamilton Bowen or Gary Reader, got to have one and then I can "man up" again. I do think the .45 Colt has the potential to be more powerful then my .44 Mag. and it has history and the "cool factor" going for it. Both S&W and Ruger have had quality control issues and could have done a better job at controlling chamber, throat, barrel dimensions, barrel cylinder gap and neither one of them were smart/wise enough to get it perfect. That is why the true custom hand gun smith is in business. Both Ruger and S&W make a good hand gun, just not a perfect hand gun and they never will. For now they are the best thing going for the masses and we can argue the Ruger, S&W .44 mag. and .45 Colt thing till the cows come home. A brown bear won't know the difference, he will just be pissed off if we shoot him with our big bore hand gun and make all of us wish we had our big rifle in our hands!