44 Mag Load with Clays


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Bull_frog
September 9, 2009, 07:52 PM
Another lost sole here looking for some reload advice. I reload my 45 ACP and have used Clays with much success. What is a good load for 44 Mag with Clays? Planning on using some Berry's 240 gr. HP bullets. Looking for good all around performance, mainly bought the gun for whitetail hunting. I plan on picking up a reloading manual at the gun shop tomorrow but I know some of you guys will have some good loads from experience. Thanks!!!

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Walkalong
September 9, 2009, 09:12 PM
Clays for hunting loads in .44 Mag with a Berrys 240 Gr HP? Not a good choice of powder or bullet. Get a good jacketed or cast bullet and use a slow powder for hunting power type loads.

Or do you mean to shoot the Berrys for fun with a light plinking load?

Unique, Universal Clays, or N340 for medium power loads with the Berrys.

Red Dot, AA #2, 700X, for real light loads. Clays may work for that as well. Haven't tried it in light loads in .44 mag.

ArchAngelCD
September 10, 2009, 02:17 AM
I totally agree Clays is a poor choice for a hunting load in the .44 Magnum. It is a much too fast a powder to safely generate any kind of hunting velocity in that caliber. A "Magnum" powder like W296/H110, AA#9, 2400, Lil'Gun, IMR4227 or Enforcer would make much better choices in powder selection.

Like said above buy a jacketed bullet or a very hard cast bullet for hunting deer. I like to use a wide flat point cast bullet like those made by Cast Performance (http://www.castperformance.com/Categories.bok?category=Cast+Performance). Those are the same bullets used in Grizzly Cartridges ammo. If you would prefer a jacketed bullet Hornagy bullets (https://www.hornady.com/shop/?ps_session=f5990445aaf2b872bf8a3adc5acd0118&page=shop%2Fbrowse&category_id=f62052cbc8419dfb03539f2b88a36abb) will do a good job and without costing you too much either. If you would rather use a premium bullet I would suggest Barnes Pistol Bullets (http://www.barnesbullets.com/products/pistol/). They cost more but they work and they are also lead free for those States where lead bullets are no longer legal to hunt with.

loadedround
September 10, 2009, 01:12 PM
I agree with the other two posters. Clays is much too fast for the 44 mag. My current Speer #14 Manual shows no loads for the 44 mag, either cast or jacketed.

Ben Shepherd
September 10, 2009, 03:00 PM
For a plinker load- 7.5 grains of universal clays under that berrys 240 with a light crimp would be an excellent choice.

For hunting, as the others have noted, you've got the wrong slug and the wrong powder, unless you're just gunning for varmints.

Bull_frog
September 10, 2009, 08:11 PM
Hey thanks for the advice, I didn't make it to the gun shop today anyway. I am a little unclear why the Berry's copper plated HP are not a good choice though. I found them in the Cabela's catalog, seemed like a decent bullet. I reload with cast in my 45 which work well, I will check if the local shop has any for 44.

ArchAngelCD
September 11, 2009, 03:23 AM
Hey thanks for the advice, I didn't make it to the gun shop today anyway. I am a little unclear why the Berry's copper plated HP are not a good choice though. I found them in the Cabela's catalog, seemed like a decent bullet. I reload with cast in my 45 which work well, I will check if the local shop has any for 44.
Plated bullets are not jacketed bullets. For the most part lead bullets are electroplated with copper to make a plated bullet. I think they were originally created to protect the user from exposed lead, not to replace jacketed bullets. They are much softer than jacketed bullets that's why most plated bullet companies recommend the use of lead bullet load data with their bullets. Also, most plated bullets won't perform well under the pressure and velocity stresses placed on them when used in a Magnum hunting application. If I got anything wrong I'm sure someone will correct me but I think I got the general idea across correctly.

Walkalong
September 11, 2009, 10:24 AM
ArchAngelCD is right. The plated bullets are quite soft and not really suited to, nor designed for, hunting applications.

Hard cast lead bullets work great because they will hold together and get the penetration you need.

Ben Shepherd
September 11, 2009, 10:31 AM
You will find that those Berrys plated bullets are too soft for reliable penetration. Anything but a perfect shot through the ribcage is a very risky proposition.

Also, as noted above, they are too soft to be driven at the higher velocities most hunting rounds acquire, this limits you in both the range(low-velocity = poor trajectory) and penetration deptartments.

I've also found that that hollow point cavity is more for looks than anything. They don't expand worth beans.

flipajig
September 11, 2009, 11:39 AM
For my hunting needs i use
Aliant 2400 with hard cast or nosler JHP in 240 grn pills..in my 44 mags..

rcmodel
September 11, 2009, 12:35 PM
I've also found that that hollow point cavity is more for looks than anything. They don't expand worth beans. That right there is why you have the wrong bullet for deer hunting.

Not saying a .44 cal hole through a deer won't kill it.
Just don't expect reliable expansion at all with a Berry PHP.

rc

sniper1259
September 11, 2009, 05:54 PM
hey BullFrog, dont give up yet!! try this site http://data.hodgdon.com

as Clays is a Hodgdon powder, get on the net (dont tell me you cant) and check the site they have. they have 4 loads with bullets from 165g to 240g

just make sure that you use a ROLL CRIMP on this round and make it a heavy crimp, this is a requirement of the .44 mag round and is standard as the recoil is heavy and you have to keep the bullets in place once seated. repeat use a ROLL CRIMP NOT A TAPER

and mark the site as a favorite for Dupont IMR and Winchester powders as well

rcmodel
September 11, 2009, 05:58 PM
just make sure that you use a ROLL CRIMP on this round and make it a heavy crimp,Not on Berry Plated bullets the OP is using you don't!

I'm not even real sure the .44 bullets even have a crimp cannulure?

rc

Walkalong
September 11, 2009, 07:51 PM
No they don't and were not meant to be shot at over 1200 FPS using H-110 or W-296 which needs a strong crimp.

AA #9 will push that Berrys as fast as it can take without needing a super strong crimp. A good medium or so taper crimp will do the trick.

Even better is a nice charge of Unique or Universal Clays with a medium taper crimp for nice plinking/target loads. (As has been posted)

We should not still be talking about Berrys, H-110, and heavy roll crimps in the same sentence. :scrutiny:

just make sure that you use a ROLL CRIMP on this round and make it a heavy crimp, this is a requirement of the .44 mag round and is standard as the recoil is heavy and you have to keep the bullets in place once seated. repeat use a ROLL CRIMP NOT A TAPER
Heavy recoil with Clays in .44 Mag????

And besides a heavy crimp is not a requirement of the .44 Mag, but of certain powders in the .44 mag. ;)

Bull_frog
September 11, 2009, 08:02 PM
Ok had to make a trip to two different gun shops to get everything, haven't reloaded for a while didn't realize primers were gold! For power Winchester 296, Bullets Speer Gold Dot 240 GR GDHP. Using 23 grains of powder for the charge. You guys were talking about heavy and light crimp what is good for this combo.

ArchAngelCD
September 12, 2009, 01:15 AM
W296/H110 are hard powders to ignite so those powders require a Magnum primer and a good heavy crimp. You will get very good results if you do that. Also, those Speer Gold Dot bullets are really for self defense, not hunting but they are tough enough to get the job done because they are a premium bullet. It's my opinion you would have been better off using a Hornady XTP bullet because they won't expand as fast as the Gold Dot bullet will allowing for penetration but like I said, the Gold Dots are a quality product so you should be OK. With the scarcity of components we use what we can find these days.

Hodgdon recommends a charge of between 23.0gr and 24.0gr W296 with a 240gr Nosler JHP bullet. I think you will be right on track with the charge you are going to try.

Good luck with the hunt, keep us updated...

Ben Shepherd
September 12, 2009, 12:01 PM
With those 240 Gold Dots and 296, you'll want a good solid crimp. Seat them until you can barely see the crimp cannelure, then put enough crimp on them that it bites almost to the bottom of the cannelure. Does that make sense?

Just don't overdo it to the point the brass below the crimp starts bulging and you lose neck tension.

As far as the gold dot slugs go? They're tough enough. I've purposely driven them hard enough in rifles to literally have the nose section fold right back against the slug body trying to make them fail. Occasionally they shed a petal or 2, but I've NEVER had one "come apart". Drive 'em fast enough, and they just act like a Nosler partition is all.

Although, at least in my 44's, I will give the accuracy edge to the XTPs, no question there.

Bull_frog
September 14, 2009, 08:21 PM
I loaded up a few and shot them over the weekend. Tried a few different powder levels with the 296, the 22.5 seemed to hold a tighter group than ones loaded at 24. I was shooting offhand so I plan to reload some more and go to the range and shoot off a rest. As far as bullets I wanted to get some XTP but my local shop was out so I got the Speer, it says right on the box "Ideal Hunting Bullet", you have to believe the box!

Walkalong
September 14, 2009, 08:31 PM
you have to believe the box!That's right, advertisers never lie...er I mean...stretch the truth. :)

Speer makes good bullets though. XTP's have a great rep though. I have some Speer 270 Gr Gold Dots loaded up over W-296, and they are quite destructive. Mushroom up pretty well, hang together great, and really penetrate. (Way more than needed for small deer) I am quite sure the XTP does great as well.

Ben Shepherd
September 15, 2009, 12:12 AM
I have some Speer 270 Gr Gold Dots loaded up over W-296

Yep. One of my best loads is 296 under a Speer 270 GDSP. Cases are so clean inside that they almost look new. Serious. And as far as accuracy goes, off bags with open sights, I can hold an inch all day long.

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