need advice on a 44 Mag load.

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by hoser1, Jun 7, 2006.

  1. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    Hey Guys,
    I have 500 200 grain flat-point round-nose bullets I got off fleabay and 4 lbs of Unique, some Winchester WLP primers and some Federal No 150 Lg pistol primers and a couple of Super Blackhawks (44 mag). What powder charge would you recommend? These loads will be for punching paper. I have store boughts for everything else.
    Also have a S&W 44 special, advice on powder charges for that too?
    The Unique is the only powder I have at the moment. 'ceptin that can of fffg ;)
    The One book/One Caliber manual says 11.0 (starting) to 13.2 (max).
    I was just wondering what you guys thought would be a good load with the components I have.
    Thanks
  2. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    If you stay between 7 to 10 gr of Unique without a magnum primer you should be fine for either caliber. These are light bullets for a 44 Special or Mag.
  3. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    I'll back up those loads as they are the same as I use in my four 44's. Maybe you should check your books and maybe find out that they are well within the limits of Unique, a 200 gr and a WLP primer. I would also like you to tell me which "silly stuff" you are referring to or is that not possible. Please list the posts here and we can discuss this.

    I think it is you who cannot back up his posts.
  4. Kentuckian

    Kentuckian New Member

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    You might want to check out Alliant's website.
  5. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    Here's a little story about guessing at loads:

    Several years back an older fellow was shoting a few tables from me at the range mid-week. He had a new brass framed Winchester Mode1866 clone. Brand new gun which he shot with a reloaded cartridge in 44/40. Bullseye! But when he opened the chamber all that came out was the case head, no case. The case was stuck in the chamber. To make a long story short the old guy thought that 44 was 44 so he loaded the 44/40 with his favorite high power 44 mag load. A gunsmith had to remove the case and the gun's frame got bent (brass, remember) and it would not feed ammo anymore. He took the repeating lever action that won the West and turned it into a single shot! If he had read the engraving on the side of that barrel and looked up the loads for 44/40 he would still be shooting it as a repeater (not actually because it was so long ago that he'd be near 100 years old).

    Get a manual! Read it! Follow it to the letter! Then you and your gun will be safe. Taking loads off the internet can be dangerous without verifying those loads in a manual!

    LDBennett
  6. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    Dang I back tracked to check something and lost all my reply.
    Here goes again.
    Thanks for all the advice guys, I have a One book/ One caliber for the 44 mag and an old Speer number nine and if I have any more they are buried. the only other manuals I have a t the moment are for shotshells.
    I had a Dillon progressive back in the eighties and loaded mostly .357 mag and 45 acp but sold it back then during a divorce and am just now getting back into it. Man, I loaded a ton of 45 acp through that thing! I miss it too.
    I am well aware of the importance of checking with the manuals and not overloading a case. I pity the old dude who ruined his repeater. That was a shame. At least it didn't warp HIS frame. Inplanotx, thanks for the pet loads, that was what I was looking for. Also, Popgunner, one of the only loads in the One book for a 200 gr. cast bullet was for linotype. I know my bullets aren't linotype and I know what you mean about the big difference.
    Kentuckian, I should have thought about Alliance's website, thanks. I will check it out.
    Like I said, thanks for the advice. Rest assured that I won't blow myself up nor harm my pistols.
    I have about 500 bullets and at least that many cases and plenty of primers so the next question will probably be about how to unlead my barrels. ha.
    I've always shot jacketed bullets so that probably isn't a joke!
    Thanks again.
  7. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    Well, pop, my loads start with many manuals, to be specific, Lyman's 48th, Sierra, Lee, Hormady, Nosler, Barnes, Hodgdon and many more which are in my library. However, I use them as a starting point ONLY! I usually start with the starting load and work up a pistol load .1 grain of powder at a time until I reach a point where the pistol I am using hits max accuracy. How do I determine max accuracy? With a Ransom rest and windage base. I also use a chronograph so that I know if and when there are either changes in my pressures or no change. If no change then I stop because this is an indication I use to indicate max pressure. It also depends on whether or not I am looking for a plinking/practice load or if I am after a target or hunting load. I have been handloading for many years and have loaded many hundreds of thousands of rounds and I have only had one squib round. A shotshell without powder. I have never had a pistol or rifle squib round or any type of accident.

    If you look at the data you just presented, what type of pistol was used to develope that data? The Lyman manual lists the pistol type used and they also list separate data for Thomson Contenders and Rugers.

    I happen to have a Model 29 and 25 that I load differently for, than my Rugers. The data I gave is for my Smiths, NOT my Rugers since he clearly stated he was using a S&W 44. If someone is handloading he KNOWS that any load stated should be dropped by at least 10% (although many books say 5%) by my safety standards and then worked up from there.

    I would also invite you to join www.handloader.com, which I belong to where there are more than 300,000 listed loads to peruse. You can even input your own pet loads if you'd like. However, this costs $29.95 a year which is less than the cost of a reloading manual.

    Hoser1 - If you keep a plain based lead bullet below 900 fps, you should not have any barrel leading to worry about unless your pistol has a very rough bore or if your forcing cones are oversized. You can check you forcing cone dimensions and buy bullets sized to those specifically. Leading occurs if the base of the bullet doesn't obturate the cone on its transition into the barrel. This causes the bullet base to melt which will coat the barrel. Get yourself a Lewis lead remover and you won't have a problem.

    Happy shooting.
  8. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    I had to look up the definition of "obturate" :) (Means block the path of) or in a gun barrel to block the escape of the gasses.
    I will get a lewis lead remover just mainly cause I love tools and can't resist a new gadget even though I will try me best to keep from leading my bore in the first place.
    I don't have (or know anybody that does have) a chronograph so keeping the bullet below 900fps will be to follow recipies designed for that purpose.
    I loaded s few 44 mag rounds with from 7 to 10 grains of unique and will test them this next weekend.
    Gott go
    daughter is hungry for fish and is tapping her feets.
    later
  9. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    BTW,
    These test loads are for my Super Blackhawks (7 1/2 and 10" bbls) 44 Mag. NOT for my Smith 44 special.
    Later
  10. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    it seems there isn't a recipe for 200gr soft swaged lead bullets using unique?
    Or maybe not any for the 200 gr soft lead bullets at all.
    Popgunner, you checked several different manuals. I will either buy a lyman's 48th today at books-a-million or if they don't have it, I will order one. I will get whatever I can find at the bookstore though.
    I really don't want to lead up my bbls. I suppose you see the lead in the bbls?
    Like I said, I've always used jacketed bullets. The only lead I've ever messed with was casting balls for muzzle loading pistols.
    Inplanotx, I guess I need to know the size of my forcing cones also, if I'm going to be shooting lead bullets? and buy bullets accordingly?
    I'll damn sure buy heavier ones next time. ha. I may not load these at all. and just keep them until a good use presents itself.
    I think my mistake was buying 44 caliber bullets that are too light. right?
    I'll see what kind of manuals are available and see if I can get any other info that what you guys have looked up. I really thank you all for the trouble you've went to for me.
  11. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    Anybody want some of these bullets to check hardness?
  12. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    I don't know what brand they are, just some I bought from a guy on Ebay.
    I can send you some if you want to see them.
  13. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    They are fairly shiny and I can't scratch it with my fingernail.
  14. old fart

    old fart New Member

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    loading cast bullets for the .44 cal. handguns fan be very rewarding. It places minimum wear on the gun and maximum utility. Bullets from 165 gr. to over 325 gr. are useable. A 200 gr. with a light load of Unique or Bullseye willbe fun to shoot and a little adjusting should provide interesting accuracy.
    my 29-2 will shoot > 1.5 " @ 50yds. If you get a copy of Lyman's Cast Bullet Handbook. you should be in business.:)
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2006
  15. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    oldfart:

    What is not "fun and rewarding" is digging the lead out of the barrel. I quit shooting exposed lead bullets, cast or swaged, to avoid hours of cleaning. The cure is the "restrike" bullet from Rainier. They are cast bullet (relatively low cost) that are flash plated with copper. This keeps the lead from stripping off the bullet as it travels down the barrel and prevents leading of the barrel. For me the time saved cleaning my guns, that I used to shoot cast bullet in, has been significant. It is fun to shoot but not so much fun to labor over the cleaning afterwards. Those Lyman loads can be used for the Rainier bullets too. As for casting my own bullets: been there, done that....No thanks.

    LDBennett
  16. hoser1

    hoser1 New Member

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    Thanks, guys.I appreciate all the advice. I still haven't loaded any since those first test ones.
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