Any 44 suggestions?


PDA






Tinks 69
September 9, 2007, 07:23 PM
I currently own a 44 blackhawk. My father had the barrel shortened years ago because it was front heavy. The accuracy is not what it should be. Time to trade up. I am going to buy a new 44 before deer season this year. Id like to hear your opinion of your 44, good or bad, to help me decide on which one to buy. Your preferred load in that gun would be great too. Thanks for the help. Scott

If you enjoyed reading about "Any 44 suggestions?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Cosmoline
September 9, 2007, 07:28 PM
There's nothing wrong with a Blackhawk. Is it a three screw? I'd suggest just getting it recrowned and/or tightened up. You can spend more for a Model 29 or a Redhawk, but the double action feature isn't really needed for hunting. For hunting the Hornady XTP or a soft Keith over a healthy dose of 2400 are good.

PotatoJudge
September 9, 2007, 07:47 PM
An unaltered Blackhawk would be good. I prefer the Bisley setup. http://www.gunblast.com/Ruger_Bisley_Hunter.htm
Or a Redhawk, Super Redhawk, S&W 29 or equivalent, Dan Wesson 744, or Colt Anaconda. All excellent guns.

Do you have any interest in putting a scope on it? Price range?

Tinks 69
September 9, 2007, 08:00 PM
Thanks guys. No scope or red dot. Id rather keep open sights for the time being. I dont want to go over $600. Have you come across any sites that have benched all the guns and can give you comparisons?

wcwhitey
September 9, 2007, 08:02 PM
I agree with Cosmoline, the Blackhawk is a great gun. I had mine taken down to 5" from it's original 7 1/2" for the same reason. Gun shoots better than ever, no other changes. A good crown will do wonders for accuracy providing the rest of the gun is in good order. Bill

Tinks 69
September 9, 2007, 08:12 PM
Last time we were out I shot my friends 44 and mine. His was some off brand that I hadnt heard of. It shot rings around my blackhawk. Maybe its just too old.

Cosmoline
September 9, 2007, 09:22 PM
No such thing as "too old" for a Blackhawk. The very oldest Blackhawk .44's are some of the most accurate and sought after .44's around. It's very hard to "trade up" from an old Blackhawk. Unless it's to an even older Blackhawk.

Have you come across any sites that have benched all the guns and can give you comparisons?

A well tuned Blackhawk is as accurate as any .44 will ever be. The only one that would best it, esp. a flattop or three screw, would be a Colt Anaconda. But even then it would be a close call. If yours is shooting poorly, I'd strongly suggest you track down the reason before giving up on the revolver.

You could send it to Ruger or go to a local smith if you can't find the problem. Ruger does a great job for a very reasonable price. The only problem is they are bound by settlement agreements to install a transfer safety bar on any older three screw they get, which is why I was asking. If it is, a local smith should be able to track down your problem. It may be as simple as a worn out base pin.

alucard0822
September 9, 2007, 09:36 PM
I agree with the above posts, with $600, a taurus m44 or possibly a black/red hawk would be all that is in that price range. The blackhawks are probably the best SA hunting revolver made, and most are quite accurate. Have a smith check it out, and save the rest of your loot for some 300gr XTPs and H110 for some thumping lods

300gr XTP, 19gr H110, win LPM primer, and hold on.

Saint Dennis
September 9, 2007, 09:57 PM
Listen to the Senior Members. Take that $600 and spend it on your blackhawk at someplace like Alpha Percision or another custom shop. You will end up with a slicked up, accurate jewel. Taylor throating is a poor man's line bore job. Mix in an action / trigger job and a target crown and your "too old" blackhalk will shoot circles around a factory origional gun. I did a Bisley Vaquero and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

PotatoJudge
September 9, 2007, 11:50 PM
I am going to buy a new 44 before deer season this year.

Spending the cash to trick out the gun is a fine idea, but few decent smiths have a two month turn around time.

If the OP decides custom work is his thing (and if I had $0 in a Blackhawk I might go the tuned route too), buying a used 44 mag now and selling it at the end of the season should cost/net no more than $50 depending on the buy/sell prices (private party). He then still has the cash and now has the time to send his Ruger off to a reputable smith that he's had time to research. Likewise, buy a temp gun for the season and send the Blackhawk back to Ruger for a rebarrel in the length of your choice. Their prices and turnaround are very good, I hear.

john1911
September 10, 2007, 12:02 AM
I'm gonna try a 4" Redhawk for deer hunting this fall. It's shooting pretty good out to about 50 yards. Should do the trick.

I also use a 4 5/8" Blackhawk in .41 mag. I'm probably more accurate with that than the Redhawk.

D&T
September 10, 2007, 12:45 AM
A Ruger Super Blackhawk in 44 magnum with a 10 1/2" Silhouette barrel makes a superb deer hunting handgun. the trigger has been reworked down to a clean and crisp trigger pull of 30 ounces. The barrel was recrowned and lead lapped and the barrel to cylinder gap was closed to .002. The factory wood grips have since been replaced with a Pachmayr Presentation rubber grip....

This is a favorite load and it has done well in many different 44 magnum revolvers.

CASE: Starline Nickel plated 44 Magnum

PRIMER: CCI-350 mag. pistol

POWDER: Winchester 296 / 24.0 gr.

BULLET: Remington 140 gr. JHP

VELOCITY: 1,762 fps.

ACCURACY: Fired from a bench at 50 yards, 6-shots inside a 2" circle is a common occurance. Keeping 6-shots inside a 6" circle at 100 yards is also easy to do when fired from a rest. I know that the gun can do better but this is the best my ol' eyes can do....

http://i193.photobucket.com/albums/z132/HonkerHunter_photos/150L.jpg

S&Wfan
September 10, 2007, 01:04 AM
Hi,

I hate scopes on handguns too . . . although please read my comments near the end for the ultimate deep woods rig, IMHO.

I once owned a nice old 3-screw Super Blackhawk in .44mag and hunted with it a few years. It is/was a great shooting revolver, but I never felt comfortable carrying it with the hammer down over an empty chamber . . . always fearing I'd lowered the hammer on a live round.

Those 3-screws didn't have a firing pin block in 'em like the one ones do, so this was a real problem . . . especially on the occasions when I cocked in preparation for taking a good shot but not having the deer walk into an open area after all. In those cases I was always less than confident I'd rotated the cylinder correctly.

Then I traded it for my current .44mag . . . a Model 29-5. The first full run of S&W M 29s with the beefier construction elements.

I've never looked back and don't regret selling that fine SB at all. Today it gives another pleasure, and I hope he's as thrilled with it as I've been for many, many years now with my 29-5.

I've lost count of the deer that have fallen to this combination pictured, especially with this particular bullet and loading by Federal.

Thus, I recommend a S&W Model 629 (stainless), or any S&W Model 29-5 or later blued revolver. They have superb triggers (which is so important). Also, a barrel of either 5, 6 or 6 1/2" would be just fine indeed.

http://216.77.188.54/coDataImages/p/Groups/246/246167/folders/193542/1994490IMG1599b.JPG

Mine groups under 2" supported each time I test it from 50 yards.

Standing and totally unsupported, I recently shot this 5-shot group at 50 yards. You can't ask for better accuracy than my Smith's trigger allows me to get!

Here's that target, a simple 5" black square. The two high shots were called flyers too, btw.

http://216.77.188.54/coDataImages/p/Groups/246/246167/folders/183771/22132755shotgroup081807b.jpg

I'd seriously consider a red dot sight, or better yet, a HOLOSIGHT. Twice I've dropped three deer . . . including the third broadside in a clearcut RUNNING broadside at a paced out 65 yards. It disappeared (dropped in its tracks) before the barrel came down! The holosight allows one to keep their eyes open and carefully thread the needle in the deep Georgia woods I primarily hunt in . . . such as when I dropped this piebald buck in very thick cover . . . with a shot through the heart.

For me, it is my ultimate rig and I desire absolutely nothing else.

BTW, I now almost always only handgun hunt for whitetail. That's the confidence I have in my 1990 Model 29, the 300 grain thumper load and the first-generation Holosight.

D&T
September 10, 2007, 01:19 AM
That's good shooting and a good looking rig you got there...

I've given serious thought to the Bushnell Holosight but just had'nt got that far yet...

I will eventually cut the barrel back to 8 inches and add a muzzle brake and set the gun up for "sling carry" and I guess that since I'm not finished rebuilding this gun, i'll probably wait till I have it completed before scoping it....

critter
September 10, 2007, 07:10 AM
I have owned and shot several .44 mag's. The only one I currently own (as it is all I need) is a Ruger Blackhawk Hunter stainless model with a Bisley grip and 7.5" barrel. It is THE MOST accurate .44 I have fired. I have a 4X scope mounted and took a whitetail buck last year at 65 yards with it. I hit the deer EXACTLY at point of aim and it did the required number on him.

My load was a 240 gr Rem JHP over a stiff load of H110. I put 12 rounds of that load in a group of under 3" at 50 yards from a wrist-rested bench. Good enough for government work! The gun also LOVES heavy 300 gr WFN lead bullets. Haven't taken any game with them-YET!

Good luck with your decision.

Tinks 69
September 10, 2007, 08:49 AM
Thanks for the help guys, I had no Idea I had such a gem. I am going to hang on to it through deer season and then send it to get modified after. Ill have to check out the holosight too.

Stainz
September 10, 2007, 09:05 AM
I really like my 6" partially lugged 629, bought new just over two years ago. I bought it for my .44 Russians, Specials, and wimpy Magnums. I also have it should I ever decide to hunt with a handgun. To aid the big boomers, it, and my even newer 4" 629, both have the Hogue .500 Magnum backstrap-enclosing monogrips. They tame the hot UMC 180gr SJHP, leaving only a muzzle jump to contend with. Some lighter Wolff Springs, and those grips, and a bit of dry-fire breakin, and you have a great DA trigger revolver to hunt with. DA has it's advantages - even in hunting!

Remember, S&W pioneered the .44 Magnum - current 29's & 629's will enjoy a long life with commercial SAAMI spec'd .44 Magnum ammo.

Stainz

ravencon
September 10, 2007, 10:59 AM
Thus, I recommend a S&W Model 629 (stainless), or any S&W Model 29-5 or later blued revolver. They have superb triggers (which is so important). Also, a barrel of either 5, 6 or 6 1/2" would be just fine indeed.

You can't assume that any given new S&W will have a decent trigger, much less a superb trigger. Try before you buy or at least be prepared to send it in for an action job.

Neophyte1
September 10, 2007, 12:18 PM
Tinks69: good deal. Keep the Ruger:)

ArchAngelCD
September 11, 2007, 07:23 PM
I have to agree with the others who have told you to have the work done to your current revolver. With a budget of $600 you can have the whole gun rebuilt and still have money left over for plenty of ammo.

Send it back to Ruger for a tune-up. If it need a new barrel Ruger has barrels for their current 44. Super Blackhawk in lengths of 4 5/8" 5 1/2" 7 1/2" and 10 1/2". The barrel for their .44 Blackhawk Flattop is 6 1/2". I'm sure there's something in that group you will like. IMO it would be better to spend the money on your Dad's revolver than buy a cheaper new revolver. You have a quality gun that can be put back into top condition. (and you get to keep and use your Dad's gun)

Majic
September 12, 2007, 04:37 PM
Not to step on any toes, but how much experience do you have with shooting big bore magnums? Some people think they can just step right up to the big magnums, but you will be surprised at how easy you can develop a flinch and not know it. Have someone else you know to be a good shooter shoot the revolver and see what groups they get. Did your father complain of poor accuracy after he had the work done to the revolver? It may be a bad crown, but if Dad was happy after the conversion (assuming Dad is a decent shot) then unless the revolver was dropped on it's muzzle it should still be sound. Something else to explore is different ammo. Not all guns like all ammo.

big44
September 12, 2007, 06:04 PM
I just got one one of the Ruger Alaskans in 44 Magnum. Probably not good for hunting, but it is real nice otherwise. For hunting the S&W 629 is good, I hear a lot of good things on the Taurus Raging Bull, and the Rugers are hard to beat. Usually for hunting at least a 6" barrel is good as it gives you a better sight radious.

ArchAngelCD
September 12, 2007, 07:02 PM
Majic,
You made good points and I agree, that's why I told him he should send his Blackhawk back to Ruger for a checkup.

wcwhitey
September 12, 2007, 08:08 PM
Before I had my barrel shortened by a reputable smith I called Ruger to price a barrel swap, from 7 1/2 to 4 5/8. They were only getting $150 for the whole job, this included a polishing so the stainless would match. That was a good price, I also wanted a different front sight, so I went local. Something to consider. I found them very pleasant to talk to and willing to help. Bill

StrikeEagle
September 13, 2007, 02:17 AM
Maybe I missed it, but I didn't see any mention of just how short the barrel is now. I'm kind of wondering if it was turned into a 'Sheriff's Model' or 'Shopkeeper's Model' with a really REALLY short barrel.

If so, that kind of thing is not good for the practical accuracy ("shootability") of the revolver. If this is the case, a new barrel would be in order, IMO... 5" or 5.5" might be right.

Bear41mag
September 13, 2007, 03:26 PM
My personal favorite in a 44 mag for heavy hunting loads is the Redhawk 5.5 inch barrel. Nothing wrong with the blackhawk, have a few but I really like my Redhawk. Why do I use a .44 mag, cause I have'nt been able to get my hands on a 5.5 inch Redhawk in 45 colt yet.

If you enjoyed reading about "Any 44 suggestions?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!