The .460 Weatherby Magnum

By Chuck Hawks

The .460 Weatherby Magnum is based on the huge .378 Weatherby belted case necked up to accept .458" bullets. The .378 Wby. is itself based on a belted version of the .416 Rigby case. Jack O'Connor first showed Roy Weatherby a .416 Rigby case that he had reloaded for his .416 Rigby rifle. (O'Connor brought a .416 Rigby rifle, developed loads for it and wrote articles extolling its virtue, thus introducing the caliber to most American hunters for the first time.)

The .460 Weatherby uses the same bullets as the popular .458 Winchester Magnum. It was introduced in 1958, no doubt in response to the unexpected popularity of Winchester's .458 and the laws of certain African countries, which demanded bullets of no less than .40 caliber for use on elephant and rhino.

Weatherby offers factory loads with a 450 grain Barnes-X bullet at 2,700 fps and 7,248 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy. Also 500 grain soft point and FMJ bullets, both at 2,600 fps and 7,504 ft. lbs. of ME. The only other company to load .460 ammo is A-Square, who offers a trio (they call it a Triad) of 500 grain bullets at 2,580 fps with 7,389 ft. lbs. of ME.

According to the Hornady Handbook, Third Edition handloaders can push a 350 grain bullet to 2,950 fps with 115.5 grains of H380 powder or 123.2 grains of Winchester 760 powder. A 500 grain bullet can be driven to 2,600 fps with 120.8 grains of IMR 4350 or 124.6 grains of Norma 204 powders. All of these loads use Weatherby brass and hot Federal 215 primers.

Note: A complete article about the .460 Weatherby Magnum can be found on the Rifle Cartridge Page.

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Copyright 2004, 2016 by Chuck Hawks. All rights reserved.