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.44 special load data recommendations needed please

This is a discussion on .44 special load data recommendations needed please within the Reloading forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; Hi. I was wondering if anyone has a good recipe for loading for a.44 special. I've been loading for my .44 magnum for a few ...


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Old May 14th, 2017, 04:05 AM   #1
 
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.44 special load data recommendations needed please

Hi. I was wondering if anyone has a good recipe for loading for a.44 special. I've been loading for my .44 magnum for a few years. Basically what I've been loading for is a Browning Model 92 rifle. I actually load light for it. Recently I picked up a Ruger Redhawk Hunter. I found that my rifle loads are a little too light for it. Anyhow, that is neither here nor there. At the gun shop I frequent, someone suggested loading .44 specials for plinking. Of course it got me thinking. So hence the question. I do have some special brass and the dies capable to load them, I just can't find a recipe that suits me. What I have on hand is Hornady XTP 180gr heads and Hogdon H110 powder. Has anyone loaded the special with that combo? Next question, is that powder too hot for the special? For what it's worth, I do use that powder for .38 special as well as .357 and .44 magnum. Thanks in advance for the help.

Cheers!
Mike



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Old May 14th, 2017, 05:22 AM   #2
 
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H110 is a magnum powder and should not be down loaded more than 3%.

A popular load is the skeeter load of 7.5 grains of Unique and a 240 or 250 grain lead bullet.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 05:26 AM   #3
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I have gotten excellent accuracy with the skeeter load. In my 4" Redhawk it is soft shooting.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 06:14 AM   #4
 
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The Hornady 8th Edition Reloading manual , Speer #14 nor the Seirra 5th Edition have any loads with that bullet and H110. Not one , Nada , zip , zero !
None of the above manuals plus the Lyman 4th Edition manual show any loads what so ever with H110 in 44 Special.....can you get another type powder ?

Hornady shows data with that bullet with the following powders:
Amer Select , Bullseye, Win 231 , Clays Universal, Unique , VIHT N-340, Power Pistol , VIHT N-350 , SR 4756 , Win Action Pistol , A No. 5 and HS-6.

Hard to beat Unique in the 44 Special .
Gary

Last edited by gwpercle; May 14th, 2017 at 06:17 AM.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 06:43 AM   #5
 
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my blackhawk loves 8.0 grains of unique and a 240 grain swc. It really loves it with 8 grains and a 3300 grain swc but recoil is noticeable in lighter guns.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 07:12 AM   #6
 
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I've loaded hundreds of the Hornady 200 gr XTP in the .44 Spl. My go to plinking load is the XTP 200 grainer and 6.5 grains of Unique. 7 grains is nice also but naturally a tad warmer. Shot out of a dedicated .44 Special gun with .44 Special brass. A joy to shoot with enough juice to let you know you are shooting something. 7.5 Unique is the listed max for the 200 grain XTP per the Lyman 49th @ 11,300 C.U.P. The Hornady #8 lists max for the 200 at 7.0 Unique. The Hornady #8 data for the 180 versus the 200 grain XTP has readings about .5 grain higher. Taking that half grain variance into consideration... my 6.5 grain load with the 200 would equate to 7.0 grain for your 180. The listed velocity at 7.0 Unique was 850 fps area for the 180. Just for reference Hornady #8 lists the max for the 180 XTP at 7.5 Unique @900 fps.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 07:25 AM   #7
 
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I used Trailboss under a 200 gr lead fp cast from ww when i had a charter arms bulldog. It was a nice, easy shooting, accurate load.
Don't remember the grain weight, I'll look it up when I get home.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 08:07 AM   #8
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I've been reloading the .44 Magnum for quite a while and I've found I can load 44 Special data in Magnum brass to get lighter loads. H110 is a magnum powder and shouldn't be used in the 44 Special. One of my favorite loads is with Blue Dot and I also like Unique (or Universal)...
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Old May 14th, 2017, 09:09 AM   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldHippie1968 View Post
Hi. I was wondering if anyone has a good recipe for loading for a.44 special. I've been loading for my .44 magnum for a few years. Basically what I've been loading for is a Browning Model 92 rifle. I actually load light for it. Recently I picked up a Ruger Redhawk Hunter. I found that my rifle loads are a little too light for it. Anyhow, that is neither here nor there. At the gun shop I frequent, someone suggested loading .44 specials for plinking. Of course it got me thinking. So hence the question. I do have some special brass and the dies capable to load them, I just can't find a recipe that suits me. What I have on hand is Hornady XTP 180gr heads and Hogdon H110 powder. Has anyone loaded the special with that combo? Next question, is that powder too hot for the special? For what it's worth, I do use that powder for .38 special as well as .357 and .44 magnum. Thanks in advance for the help.

Cheers!
Mike
You cannot find load data, because you are trying to use the wrong powder. Some loading manuals indicate which powders gave the best test results, so let that be your guide as to what powder to shop for. I looked around and it seems like you will have to go by Hornady's data (buy the manual). They say that Unique, 231, and A2400 gave their best results. They also say that your 185 grain XTP gave their best results among their bullets.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 10:09 AM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwinters View Post
my blackhawk loves 8.0 grains of unique and a 240 grain swc. It really loves it with 8 grains and a 3300 grain swc but recoil is noticeable in lighter guns.
Hopefully there's an extra zero in that bullet weight.

If not, it might explain the "noticeable recoil".


Here's another vote for the "Skeeter" load of 7.5 Unique and a 240 gr swc. John Taffin also has mentioned that combo as one his guns like. Velocity runs about 950 +/- in most guns. When I shot 44 Specials (before I settled up on 45 Colt as my big bore caliber), I loaded lots of the 7.5 Unique / 240 SWC load. Everything I shot it in, loved it.

Last edited by NewportNewsMike; May 14th, 2017 at 10:15 AM.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 10:42 AM   #11
 
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grain

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewportNewsMike View Post
Hopefully there's an extra zero in that bullet weight.

If not, it might explain the "noticeable recoil".


Here's another vote for the "Skeeter" load of 7.5 Unique and a 240 gr swc. John Taffin also has mentioned that combo as one his guns like. Velocity runs about 950 +/- in most guns. When I shot 44 Specials (before I settled up on 45 Colt as my big bore caliber), I loaded lots of the 7.5 Unique / 240 SWC load. Everything I shot it in, loved it.
300 is correct.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 12:11 PM   #12
 
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Quote:
Here's another vote for the "Skeeter" load of 7.5 Unique and a 240 gr swc.
My vote as well. Works for me (and lots of other folks) and is my current goto load with .44 Special. If you are looking for a lighter load, then 6.0g works fine too.

H110/W296 is just the wrong powder for .44 Special. Unique, Universal, 20/28, HS-6, Green Dot, W-231, True Blue are all much better suited for the job.

Last edited by rclark; May 14th, 2017 at 12:16 PM.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 01:22 PM   #13
 
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My current pick for the .44 Special is 8.0 grs. HS-6 with a 240 gr. cast SWC. Muzzle velocity is around 915 f.p.s. and accuracy is very good.

Also use 5.5 grs. HP-38 (or Winchester 231) with the same bullet. Super accurate.

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Old May 14th, 2017, 01:32 PM   #14
 
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I'll also recommend the "Skeeter Load" = 7.5 grs of Unique behind a 240-250 grain LSWC seating to the crimp groove in a 44 Special casing. That load is hard to beat. It may be a little over SAAMI max but in a modern revolver it's fine. The SAAMI specs for 44 Special are held notoriously low.

One drawback is the fact that Unique is a flake type powder and doesn't always meter well.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 05:13 PM   #15
 
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Might want to reset the discussion to recognize that the OP's bullets are 185 gr XTP. It is not another Skeeter Skelton lead bullet thread. I didn't find any source except Hornady for load data in that weight of jacketed bullet.
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