.280 Ross
.280 Ross cartridge (right) next to the 303 British.
Type Rifle
Place of origin Canada
Service history
In service Canada
Production history
Designer F.W. Jones
Designed 1906
Manufacturer Ross Rifle Company
Variants 280 Flanged (280 Lancaster)
Case type Semi-rimmed, bottleneck
Bullet diameter .287 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Neck diameter .317 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Shoulder diameter .404 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Base diameter .534 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Rim diameter .556 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Case length 2.59 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Overall length 3.50 in (Bad rounding hereScript error mm)
Case capacity 76 gr H2O (4.94 cm³)
Primer type Berdan #59
Maximum pressure 47,200 psi (Bad rounding hereScript error MPa)
Ballistic performance
Bullet weight/type Velocity Energy
140 gr (Bad rounding hereScript error g) SP2,900 ft/s (Bad rounding hereScript error m/s)2,620 ft·lbf (Bad rounding hereScript error J)
150 gr (Bad rounding hereScript error g) SP2,800 ft/s (Bad rounding hereScript error m/s)2,610 ft·lbf (Bad rounding hereScript error J)
160 gr (Bad rounding hereScript error g) SP2,700 ft/s (Bad rounding hereScript error m/s)2,600 ft·lbf (Bad rounding hereScript error J)
180 gr (Bad rounding hereScript error g) SP2,550 ft/s (Bad rounding hereScript error m/s)2,600 ft·lbf (Bad rounding hereScript error J)
Source(s): "Cartridges of the World" [1]

The .280 Ross, also known as the .280 Nitro, .280 Rimless Nitro Express Ross (CIP) and .280 Rimless cartridge, is an approximately 7mm bullet diameter rifle round developed in Canada by F.W. Jones as a consultant to Sir Charles Ross, 9th Baronet, and his Ross Rifle Company of Quebec, Canada for use as a Canadian military cartridge as a replacement for the .303 British, and in a civilianised and sporterised version of his controversial Mark II and Mk III Ross rifle, and first commercially produced by Eley Brothers of London, England, in late 1907.[1]

History Edit

The .280 Ross was the first practical cartridge to reach the edge of 3,000 ft/s (910 m/s). Sir Charles Ross did many attempts while in the process of creating the "perfect cartridge", one of them leading to the creation of the .28-1906 in November 1906.

Ross also tried to convince the British War Department to adopt the .280 Ross (and his rifle) as the new service cartridge, but World War I came along and dashed his hopes.

The .280 also paved the way for Sir Charles' newly designed bullets such "Full Metal Patch" and "Metal Covered Hollow Point". The Ross Mk III rifle was especially developed to handle the .280. The .280 (and the Ross Rifle) won the famous Bisley international matches in 1908, 1912 and 1913 (King's Prize) plus many other prizes in different competitions on both sides of the Atlantic.

Performance Edit

Firing a 140-grain (Bad rounding hereScript error g) bullet at a muzzle velocity of 2,900 ft/s (Bad rounding hereScript error m/s), the new cartridge qualified for the contemporary designation "magnum". It was used as a military sniper's cartridge,[2] in addition to achieving some celebrity as an African plains game cartridge in the years immediately following the First World War. However the large capacity case was capable of moving the bullets available at that time faster than would be desirable for reliable expansion, causing them to fragment rather than penetrate properly.[3]

Ballistically, the .280 Ross cartridge's performance was broadly comparable to that of the more modern .280 Remington / 7mm Express Remington and 7×64mm. It also works well on most North American game when used with an appropriate bullet.[1]

As a commercially manufactured item this cartridge has been obsolete for some years, because of the inappropriate bullets often used in it originally, as well as problems associated with the Ross rifle that it was normally chambered in.[3][4] Handloaders continue to load successfully for it, by removing the belt from 7mm Remington Magnum or .300 Holland & Holland before resizing or by using swaged and necked-down .300 Remington Ultra Magnum cases and bullets more suitable for its high velocity. The German round .280 Halger Magnum is based on the .280 Ross case.[1] Load references can be found in the September/October 1973 issue of the Handloader Magazine.[5]

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Script error
  2. "Out of Nowhere: A History of the Military Sniper", book by Martin Pegler, Osprey Publishing, 2004, ISBN 1-84176-854-5p. 135
  3. 3.0 3.1 "The .280 Ross (.280 Rimless)" by Chuck Hawks
  4. "The .280 Ross Rifle, A Fast Shady Lady" by Erin Body at Chuck Hawks web site
  5. The Hanloader Magazine, page 29, Issue No. 45, September/October, Vol 8, No 5, 1973. Publisher Dave Wolfe, Box 3030, Prescott,Arizona 86301,USA
  • Phillips, Roger F., Francois J. Dupuis and John A. Chadwick, The Ross Rifle Story (ISBN 0-9732416-0-8)
  • Phillips, Roger F., Knap, Jerome J., Sir Charles Ross And His Rifle (ISBN 0-919316-11-5)

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