44 Magnums

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Ruzai, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Ruzai

    Ruzai New Member

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    I've finally gotten a hold of a quality made 44 magnum. I dont buy a gun I dont intend on using, so that being said I would like to know about downlaoding 44 magnums for it. These loads will be for a 4" Smith and Wesson 629-1. I know a steady diet of full-house magnum rounds will make it drop out of time quicker tha most in some cases, so I figured I'd look for some low end magnum loads and shoot factory only periodically just for fun.
    I'm eyeballing some 300 grain semi-jacketed flat nosed bullets to use for moderate to factory spec loadings but I havent settled on anything yet.

    So I was wondering if you guys would share some 44 magnum loadings that are good for 629 S&W?
     
  2. alderoth

    alderoth New Member

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    I am not a reloaded by any means but one of my good friends does it. There is a book out there called" lymans reloading handbook number 49". Im sure they have a number 50 out already lol but anyway inside this book they show you different types of loads for ALL sorts of ammunition even the. 44 magnum. They show you different powders that can be used as well as different bullet grains, also it highlights which powder works better out of all of the options. Like I said I don't know much about reloading but you might be able to find this book already on the internet for free or find it used through the android book store or amazons website. Sorry I couldn't be much help
     

  3. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    I would not use 300 gr bullets in the Smith. Stick to 240 gr or lighter. If you want to launch the heavies, get a Ruger. A 240 gr SWC at 1000 fps is very tame.
     
  4. alderoth

    alderoth New Member

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    My girlfriends father let me work on his river super black hawk. That is the only knowledge I have of the. 44 magnum lol. Sad I know lol. Anyone have any opinions on a. 454 casul?
     
  5. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    Use load data for 44 special. You can fire 44 special out of a 44 magnum same way you can 38 special out of a 357 magnum.

    One caveat if your using 44 magnum cases and 44 spl data use 44 magnum oal same is true of downloading 357mag.
     
  6. anm2_man

    anm2_man Member

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    +1 on this post. 240 for stopping power and 180 for plinking. That's what I do. .300's will sooner than later break the gun.
     
  7. spittinfire

    spittinfire New Member Supporter

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    i agree with this 100%.
     
  8. Ruzai

    Ruzai New Member

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    I was kind of wondering if that would work. I handload for my 45acp and did load for the two 357 mags for my parents revolvers. The 357s seemed a bit easier to do for some reason. I think its because there are no recoil springs to take into account.
    I'm used to playing around in the normal handload parameters instead of having to really down play the power factor in any of my ammo until now.

    One thing I'm not certain about is the primers. What are the pros and cons of using 'magnum' primers vs typical primers?

    Appreciate the feedback guys, I still have to find a place to shoot but I want to get my reloading stuff together and make some sample loads for when I do. I moved to the greater Denver area just recently, and the prices are god awful for the nearby ranges. I miss my $5 a session pice already :p
     
  9. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

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    I use magnum primers for everything. 44 Special loads in 44 mag cases work great. I load 240 grain lead over 5.0 grains of titegroup. Very nice target load. No where near magnum power.
     
  10. Txhillbilly

    Txhillbilly Active Member

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    I use Titegroup for my target/plinking loads,and H110 for my full power stuff.
    Like others have said,stick with 240gr or less for lighter recoil.

    I use 300/325gr hard cast for my hunting stuff,and they'll let you know it's a magnum your shooting.
     
  11. Ruzai

    Ruzai New Member

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    I like me some Beefalo Bore and wouldnt mind making some hardcast hunting loads eventually. But I might have to save that for if I ever get a Ruger Redhawk or Marlin in 44 magnum.
     
  12. Buckeyeborn

    Buckeyeborn New Member

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    Make your life easier and shoot 44 special out if mag loads when
    Hunting
     
  13. Lindenwood

    Lindenwood New Member

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    I have "roughly" three loads that I use for target shooting.

    One is a 200gr cast RNFP over about 13-13.2gr of Unique**, to duplicate my carry loads of 200gr@~1500fps. I set the OAL a bit long at about 1.605 to 1.609, for a little wiggle room with the pressure.

    The second most common is the same bullet, loaded backwards and seated almost fully into the case, with ~3.8gr of Unique. I seat the bullet like this both to take up as much case volume as possible (was getting inconsistent velocities otherwise), and because the "wadcutter" profile makes nice holes in the paper. Also, the wadcutted profile would make them a bit more terminally effective should they ever need to be used for defensive purposes. They should clock around 700fps out of my 8" barrel, and are obviously quite light. At the right angle, you can see them heading out! The main thing I don't like about these is they shoot like 8-12" low at 25 yards, heh. But, new shooters really like them, and I still shoot them just to kindof verify my technique and stuff at closer ranges (2-10 yards), while reducing powder use, leading, and general wear on the gun.

    Finally, I've more recently begun loading about 7.7gr of Unique under the same 200gr bullet, seated forward but down to about 1.55" OAL. I seat them a little deeper than normal just to get a bit more out of the powder, as the goal is to get a little flatter trajectory for <25yd plinking, but without getting too hot.

    As you can see, I really like Unique powder. Other than being dirty, it really does everything I need to do. I eventually want to try loading up some H110 and pushing a 200gr bullet out at like 1800+fps, but currently I get bad-enough leading shooting these bullets at 1500fps (I think largely due to too-tight throats), and I don't want to do it bad enough to drop the money for jacketed bullets.

    *edit*

    Note, the listed max for my first load is technically 13gr of Unique. I'd loaded and shoot a good 1000 rounds of these, thinking I'd been loading about 12.8gr of powder. Only recently did I get a nicer scale and discover I was actually loading about 13.2gr of Unique. I had already been loading them long and been using a light crimp anyways.

    Oh, speaking of crimp. My crimp is very light (you can't see it by looking at it). However, the gun with these loads is still more accurate than I am, and I can still hit the 8" gong at 150 yards about 4 out of 6 shots :) .
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011
  14. fmj

    fmj New Member

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    Stupid question here...pretty new to the reloading game so i ask many questions and double/triple check loads...ANYWHO, i just received my Lee carbide .44 dies in the mail (I'm an ebay junkie) they are labeled ".44 Special Dies"...is it ok to load .44 mag with these? I personally say yes...but again i feel the need to double/triple check everything.
     
  15. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    44mag the case is a little thicker with external dimension the same except for length. My rcbs dies are marke 44spcl/mag.

    Run one case through the sizer and measure. examine the mouth and look to see if it is crushed around the rim. If not your good to go.

    My bet is lee use the same dies for both
     
  16. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    i have the same dies, in the instructions, it says to back off the seating die about 1 and 3/4 turns for the 44 magnum case.

    my favorite load for my taurus 44 tracker: 44sp w/ 180gr hornady xtp w/ 8.5gr of power pistol powder and 44mag w/ 210gr sierra hp w/ 15gr of power pistol powder. both loads using magnum primers.
     
  17. Ruzai

    Ruzai New Member

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    Looks like I'm gonna be loading heavier jacketed bullets more than I originally thought. I just bought a Mark VII Desert Eagle in 44 magnum. So far all I've heard is to load the hotter stuff to cycle the action properly. Handloading for an auto-loader in 44 magnum...going to be interesting..
     
  18. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    Bullets larger than 240grn dont work well in the de cuz they dont fit in the magazine. You have to seat them too deep causing unsafe pressure for the cases
     
  19. Ruzai

    Ruzai New Member

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    Hornady's 300 grain XTP fits in them without dragging on the mag wall. That and I saw a 270 grain listed for recommended ammo on the MRI website. But we'll see what does and doesn't work in this old hand cannon. I think I need a tune up kit because my extractor is acting weird. I cycle the action dummies through it and on the last round it will only pull it halfway to 3/4ths way out of the chamber before letting go. Does it in all 5 mags and even without one in the gun.
    I'mma call MRI tomorrow at lunch and get a couple questions answered that I couldn't get answered from digging around for them.
     
  20. onenut58

    onenut58 New Member

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    Your 629 is not going to go out of time shooting 44 magnum loads.Back a few years ago silouette shooting was very popular.The long ranges made people build up very hot loads above recomended pressures and shoot the hell out of them.Ruger and dan wesson built heavier stronger guns that would with stand the severe pounding and over presure loads. The smith and wessons cylinder stop would some times let loose. This would cause the cylinder to slip backwards one notch.You would pull the trigger and be on the spent cartidge you just shot.
    Although agravating it was not dangerous and was address a few years later with deeper longer slots in the cylinder and beefed up internals that would not move.
    You can fire thousands of full house 44 mag loads through your 629 and it wont take your gun out of time. It is very rare for a smith and wesson to go out of time.There never was a timming problem just the lock slipping loose for one notch.
    I am a member of the smith and wesson forums and we occasionaly get some one who has bought into this myth usualy started by some one with a ruger.
    You can go to smith and wesson forums where they will explain to you the same thing I just did. You will get manny model 29 and 629 owners who have fired thousands of rounds through there guns with no problems posting.You exceed recomended pressures on any gun including a ruger its not wise.
    You stay with in the recomended pressure ranges of your gun and unless your rich and got a lot fo time to waste ammo your gun will out last you and more than likely a few gernerations after you.