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new to the 44 mag

This is a discussion on new to the 44 mag within the Reloading forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; Hey all, I reload for all my other handguns, and need some info on the 44 mag, like most common bullet weights, most commonly used ...


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Old January 25th, 2014, 09:47 AM   #1
 
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new to the 44 mag

Hey all,
I reload for all my other handguns, and need some info on the 44 mag, like most common bullet weights, most commonly used powders and maybe some favorite recipes. Also is the 44 special sort of like the 38 special is to the 357 mag, shorter case, easier on the hand and a bit cheaper to shoot ? I do have the latest Hornady manual to cross check, but just wanted some real life info from you all.
Any info is greatly appreciated.




Last edited by rschlos; January 25th, 2014 at 09:54 AM.
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Old January 25th, 2014, 12:52 PM   #2
 
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There is also the Hornady data page online, it has a ton of 44 maggie loads.

I load for mine with a 310gr wide flat point gas check bullet over 16.0gr H2400 in Starline brass sparked by WLP primers. It's a great hunting bullet. If you want heavier bullets in .44 Magnum, you pretty much will have to hand load those since the factory loadings stop about 240gr.

Powders for full house loads would be H110/WW296, 2400 for slightly less than full power loads since it is not a good idea to download H110/WW296 for this purpose. Those two are about the best for heavier bullets and the top end of the pressure curve. Good deer and black bear loads.

In the past I used Hornady XTP bullets but noticed a lot of them separating the jackets and lots of lead/jacket fragments ruining meat. The best factory load was the Winchester 250gr Partition Gold jhp but they quit making those so now I only use cast bullets for hunting and the Lee C430-310-RF mold casts excellent bullets for deer, bear, hog. These perform much better than jhp IMO.

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Old January 25th, 2014, 01:26 PM   #3
 
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I load 240grn Keith style bullets over 18.5grn of 2400 for my lightweight S&W 329PD.

I find it to be about all I want in that 27oz revolver.
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Old January 25th, 2014, 02:33 PM   #4
 
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240g SWC or 250g Keith bullets are you might say the 'standard' bullet. Some load heavier and some will load down to 180g bullets.... Some will load jacketed. I've just stuck with 240g SWC myself. Need to go up in weight, I grab a .45 Colt revolver.

Now, I like moderate loads as I have no need for the heavy stuff. So my goto Mag load is 10.0g of Unique under 240g SWC for around 1100fps. Do everything I might need. If you want to duplicate the Skeeter load of the .44 Spec, load 8.5g Unique/Universal under 240g bullet for around 1000fps. Of course if that is to hot, then load down accordingly to what works for you. One thing about reloading is you go from mild to wild as needed. For real mild loads grab some Trail Boss powder.

That said, I don't load .44Spec cases in my .44 Mag revolvers. As I said, above load mild to wild in the .44Mag case and you are good to go. I reserver the .44Spec cartridges for .44 Special revolvers... Justs like I don't shoot .38s in my .357s. I can load down a .357 to .38 velocities if desired.

I did work up loads using 2400, and settled on 19.0g under 240g SWC. If I remember that is about 1200fps load. Don't load that very often.

Hope that helps.

Last edited by rclark; January 25th, 2014 at 02:37 PM.
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Old January 25th, 2014, 04:29 PM   #5
 
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Quote:
240g SWC or 250g Keith bullets are you might say the 'standard' bullet. Some load heavier and some will load down to 180g bullets.... Some will load jacketed. I've just stuck with 240g SWC myself. Need to go up in weight, I grab a .45 Colt revolver.

Now, I like moderate loads as I have no need for the heavy stuff. So my goto Mag load is 10.0g of Unique under 240g SWC for around 1100fps. Do everything I might need. If you want to duplicate the Skeeter load of the .44 Spec, load 8.5g Unique/Universal under 240g bullet for around 1000fps. Of course if that is to hot, then load down accordingly to what works for you. One thing about reloading is you go from mild to wild as needed. For real mild loads grab some Trail Boss powder.

That said, I don't load .44Spec cases in my .44 Mag revolvers. As I said, above load mild to wild in the .44Mag case and you are good to go. I reserver the .44Spec cartridges for .44 Special revolvers... Justs like I don't shoot .38s in my .357s. I can load down a .357 to .38 velocities if desired.

I did work up loads using 2400, and settled on 19.0g under 240g SWC. If I remember that is about 1200fps load. Don't load that very often.
Without typing pages and pages of info the above covers just about what you need to know. I use the 19grain load with a Lyman 244 gas check bullet at about 255 grains and it shoots half inch off a sand bag at 30 yards Form a SRH 7.5" with a Ultra dot. I also like Unique 8.5 and 9.3 in my pistol is very accurate, also longshot for my casual shooting, 10 grains.
Tite group at 6 grains makes a nice target load with a 240 grain SWC lead bullet
But the case volume is very little and the little Doe-nuts ( trail boss ) will fill the case better, less chance for a double charge.
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Old January 25th, 2014, 10:57 PM   #6
 
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A 240 grain cast bullet over 9.5 grains of Unique in magnum brass won't let you down, it won't beat you or your guns up, and won't leave you wanting more.
It will shoot end to end on a deer, will let you shoot a whole lot on one pound of powder, will overflow the case on an accidental double charge, and will bring you great joy in the form of little 1000 FPS pieces of lead.
The safe range for Unique in .44 mag is huge, with loads for a 240 grain bullet from 6 grains up to as high as 12, which gives you a good margin for error as well, which is always nice to have. I don't mess with much else in the .44, because that is all I really need my gun to do, and I trust the load will do the jobs I ask of it.
I do load a nice .44 Special load with the same bullet over 6 grains of Bullseye, which is a mild load that is darn near identical to your typical .45 ACP hardball load, except with a nice meplate and sharp edges.

Good luck!
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Old January 26th, 2014, 03:35 AM   #7
 
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Thanks all, this was exactly what i was looking for.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 09:02 AM   #8
 
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I load just two varieties, 14.0 grains BlueDot with a 240gr XTP for hunting. It gets about 1250 fps, enough for me.
Also 7.0 gr RedDot with a 200 grain cast bullet, for plinking and letting newbies shoot. Pipsqueek, 200 gr at 1000 fps.
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