.404 Jeffery
The .404 Jeffery is a large caliber
In guns including firearms, caliber or calibre is the approximate internal diameter of the barrel in relation to the diameter of the projectile used in it....

, rimless cartridge designed for large, dangerous game, such as the big five
Big Five game
The phrase Big Five game was coined by white hunters and refers to the five most difficult animals in Africa to hunt on foot. The term is still used in most tourist and wildlife guides that discuss African wildlife safaris. The collection consists of the lion, African elephant, cape buffalo,...

 (elephant, rhino, cape buffalo, lion and leopard) of Africa. Other names for this cartridge include .404 Jeffery Rimless, .404 Rimless Nitro Express, and 10.75 × 73 mm. It was created by Jeffery of England based on their desire to duplicate performance of the .450/400 (3¼") cartridge. There are two basically similar sets of dimensions for this case, depending on the manufacturer.. The .404 Jeffery as originally loaded fired a .423" diameter bullet of either 300 gr with a muzzle velocity of 2600 ft/s (792.5 m/s) and muzzle energy of 4500 ft.lbf or 400 gr with a muzzle velocity of 2125 ft/s (647.7 m/s) and 4020 ft.lbf of energy. It is very effective on large game and is favored by many hunters of dangerous game. Performance and recoil are similar to other African dangerous game cartridges.The .404 Jeffery was popular with hunters and game wardens in Africa because it gave good performance with a manageable level of recoil. By way of comparison, the .416 Rigby
.416 Rigby
The .416 Rigby or 10.6x74mm was designed in 1911 by John Rigby & Company of London, England as a dangerous game cartridge and is the first one to use a bullet with a diameter of .416"...

 and .416 Remington Magnum both fire a 400 grain .416 " bullet at 2400 feet per second (731.5 m/s) with a muzzle energy of approximately 5000 ft.lbf, which handily exceeds the ballistic performance of the .404 Jeffery but at the price of greater recoil and in the case of the .416 Rigby, rifles that are significantly more expensive.


Originally the .404 Jeffery was very popular with hunters in Africa and saw significant use in both British and German colonies. As the British Empire began to shrink, many of the popular British big-bore cartridges also dwindled in popularity, and the .404 Jeffery was one of them. By the 1960s it had all but disappeared from common firearm usage.. This condition was mostly the result of the closing of the British Ammunition giant Kynoch, which was the primary manufacturer of the .404 Jeffery and many other British cartridges. The introduction of the .458 Winchester Magnum
.458 Winchester Magnum
The .458 Winchester Magnum is a belted, straight-taper cased, dangerous game rifle cartridge. It was introduced commercially in 1956 by Winchester and first chambered in the Winchester Model 70 African rifle. It was designed to compete against the .450 Nitro Express and the .470 Nitro Express...

 in 1956 in the Winchester Model 70
Winchester Model 70
The Winchester Model 70 is a bolt action sporting rifle. It has an iconic place in American sporting culture and has been held in high regard by shooters since it was introduced in 1936, earning the moniker "The Rifleman's Rifle". The action has some design similarities to Mauser designs and it is...

 bolt action rifle provided an affordable alternative to the big Nitro Express rifles and cartridges and helped to hasten the demise of the .404 Jeffery. Winchester also started a marketing campaign at about this time called "Winchester in Africa" with much success. Renewed interest in heavy game rifles and political stability in Africa has led to a resurgence in African hunting and the rifles suited for it. Kynoch Ammunition has reopened as Kynamco Limited Kynoch Ammunition. Hornady and Norma of Sweden are also offering .404 Jeffery ammunition.

Commercial and wildcat children

In recent times, the .404 case has seen a resurgence in use by wildcatters
Wildcat cartridge
A wildcat cartridge, or wildcat, is a custom cartridge for which ammunition and firearms are not mass produced. These cartridges are often created in order to optimize a certain performance characteristic of an existing commercial cartridge.Developing and using wildcat cartridges does not...

. This case has no belt, unlike many other magnum
Magnum may refer to several things:* Moses Magnum, a Marvel Comics villain*Magnum, P.I., a television series** Thomas Magnum, the lead character...

 cartridges, which can be desirable for handloading
Handloading or reloading is the process of loading firearm cartridges or shotgun shells by assembling the individual components , rather than purchasing completely assembled, factory-loaded cartridges...

 because of possible problems with case head separation with repeated reloading of belted magnum cartridges. The rimless design also contributes to smooth feeding from the box magazine of bolt action rifles.

Some common commercial children of the .404 Jeffery case are the Remington Ultra Magnum (RUM) cartridge family, as well as the Winchester Short Magnum
Winchester Short Magnum
Winchester Short Magnum, or WSM, refers to a family of rebated rim bottlenecked centerfire short magnum cartridges developed in the early 2000s by the U.S. Repeating Arms Company, the maker of Winchester rifles and one of the oldest firearms manufacturers in the United States...

 (WSM) cartridge family, which in turned spawned the Remington Short Action Ultra Magnum (RSAUM) cartridges and the Winchester Super Short Magnum
Winchester Super Short Magnum
Winchester Super Short Magnum, or WSSM is a line of rebated rim bottlenecked centerfire short magnum cartridges introduced by the U.S. Repeating Arms Company...

 (WSSM) families. Both the Winchester
Winchester Repeating Arms Company
The Winchester Repeating Arms Company was a prominent American maker of repeating firearms, located in New Haven, Connecticut. The Winchester brand is today used under license by two subsidiaries of the Herstal Group, Fabrique Nationale of Belgium and the Browning Arms Company of Morgan, Utah.-...

 and Remington cartridges have also spawned many current wildcats.

The .375 Dakota
.375 Dakota
The .375 Dakota is dangerous game cartridge and was designed by Don Allen, the founder of Dakota Arms of Sturgis, South Dakota. Since the .375 Dakota is a proprietary cartridge, no other manufacturers have produced rifles or ammunition for the .375 Dakota cartridge...

 by Dakota Arms and the .400 Tembo by Velocity USA, are cartridges based on a .404 Jeffery case.

See also

  • .400 Jeffery Nitro Express
    .400 Jeffery Nitro Express
    The .400 Jeffery Nitro Express or .450/400 3 inch Nitro Express is a .411 caliber rimmed, bottlenecked cartridge designed by Jeffery in 1902.-General Information:The .400 Jeffery Nitro Express is based on the .450/400 3¼ inch case...

  • Nitro Express
    Nitro Express
    The Nitro Express series of cartridges are used in large-bore hunting rifles, also known as elephant guns or express rifles. They are named after the propellant they use, cordite, which is composed of nitrocellulose and nitroglycerine...

  • List of rifle cartridges
  • 10 mm caliber
    10 mm caliber
    This article lists firearm cartridges which have a bullet in the caliber range.*Length refers to the cartridge case length.*OAL refers to the overall length of the cartridge.All measurements are in mm .-Pistol cartridges:...

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.