Light Loads with IMR 4227 in 44 Mag


November 21, 2006, 02:40 PM
Ok, Iím getting ready to try 240gr plated bullets in my 629. Most of the searching I have done here said not to push plated bullets over 1200 fps. The lightest load I show in my Sierra book is 22gr of 4227. And that is listed at 1200 fps. The book warns not to go below minimum loads. The IMR website only lists 22gr of powder and says that is 1310 fps. And adds that is a compressed load. Obviously I need to research a new powder for this combo, but until I run out of 4227, can I back the load down to say 20.5gr? Or will I get into trouble? Thanks for any replies.

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November 21, 2006, 02:58 PM
4227 is just a bit on the slow side for the .44 Magnum with most bullet weights even at max load levels. Dropping the charge as you suggest will likely result in poorer burning, more-erratic velocities, and larger amounts of unburned powder left behind in the gun. I'd say that it will probably "work", meaning the bullets will get out of the barrel, but it won't work very well.

I'd save the 4227 for later full-power loads, and invest in a pound of something a bit faster-burning for lighter loads. Herco is a little-known but very fine powder for such loads as you seem to want, among dozens of other candidates for the job.

Trouble?? No, just inefficiency and poorer ballistic results than I'd accept.

November 21, 2006, 03:56 PM
I was afraid of that when I saw IMR listed it as a compressed load. I was going to go to another powder when I used this batch up. I was looking at the new (To me) Ramshot True Blue powder as it has listings for both my 357 and 44 mag. 11.9gr is listed as 1188 fps as its lowest load. Iíll contact them and see if I can get away with say, about 11.5gr. Looks like the last pound or so goes in the 357. I shoot jacketed hollow points in it. If they ever get off backorder from Midway.

Mr. Tettnanger
November 21, 2006, 07:01 PM
I have 4227 and am not real fond of it. I have used it 38 special with mediocre results. I have experienced incomplete burning of all the powder. I also use a S&W 629. My "pet" load for hunting is a Hornady XTP 240 grain on top of 23.5 grains H110 and magnum primers. I LIKE H110 ALOT!!!! Great accuracy, great burn and velocities and great flames out the barrel!!!

As always: Please check your reloading manuals for safe loads. I do not suggest anybody load the above round unless they are familiar with the loading process and take the responsibility for there own loads. In other safe, don't follow my advice, and don't sue me if your mileage is different;)

Mr. Tettnanger

November 21, 2006, 08:04 PM
Actually, the 4227 is over 12 years old. I got out of shooting then because my dad died. I remember buying it to replace the 2400 powder. People back then they said it burned much cleaner, which it does. And it meters great through my powder measure. I do notice unburned powder in these reduced loads. I didnít realize that the plated bullets need a slower speed when I bought them. Should have studied a little harder before I bought them. I thought they would be a great alternative to the cast bullets I had left over. I always load cast bullets light. I just saw a lot of posts to not push these bullets over 1200 fps. The minimum I show for H110 is still 1200 fps. I need to find a powder that will let me load slower than that.

Ol` Joe
November 21, 2006, 08:53 PM
I burn Unique in mine with 250 gr cast lead. Unique does well in the 38/357 for midrange loads also. The newer lots are supposed to be cleaner burning then the old but I`m still useing up some of the older stuff and can`t confirm it. Cleaner or not, it isn`t the dirtiest stuff I`ve burnt and works very well.

November 22, 2006, 02:10 PM
LIB! I found an old book I completely forgot about. Bought it back in the mid 80s. A Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook. Now the confusion. Lyman lists a max of 24gr of 4227 for a velocity of 1196 fps in one of their 240 grain cast bullets. My Sierra book lists a max of 23.3gr for a velocity of 1300 fps in a 240gr jacketed hollow point. Are lead bullets that much slower out the barrel than jacketed? They even have a listing for Unique that is not mentioned in the Sierra book for the 240gr bullet. 9.8gr as a starting point at 912 fps to 13.0gr at 1147 fps. I'm trying to figure out why the Lyman book uses more powder but has less velocity for lead bullets than the Sierra book does for the jacketed. Any ideas? Which book should I go by? Plated manufacturers seem to want you to use cast load data.

Harve Curry
November 23, 2006, 03:44 PM
Never use 4227 for reduced loads. You can get into trouble before you know it.
I second Unique :) for light to mid range loads in the 44 magnum.

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