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.44 Magnum load data

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by jrop11, Jul 21, 2009.

  1. jrop11

    jrop11 Active Member

    I am reloading .44 Mag with a 240 grain JHP and 10.3 grains of Unique and find it to be a little weak. My manual says this is close to Maximum load and don't want to push it. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has a recipe with a bit more punch.
  2. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Well-Known Member

    Yeah. But you're going to need a different powder like AA9, 2400, 296, N110, etc.
  3. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    If you want full power, you need to use a powder better suited to .44 Magnum power levels.

    Unique is great for high mid-range loads, but it falls a couple three hundred FPS short of what you can get with 2400, H110, WW296 and other Magnum powders.

    And you can't tell what you are getting by how it feels.
    Both blast & recoil will be less because it is a faster burning powder then what you normally find in .44 Magnum loads.

    Now, with all that said, Lyman #49 shows 12.0 grains Unique & the Speer 240 grain as a Max load giving 1,084 FPS at 38,700 CUP.

    The same bullet with a Max load of 24.0 grains WW296 gives 1,292 FPS at only 38,500!

  4. 243winxb

    243winxb Well-Known Member

    WW296 for top velocity. Mag. primer. Dont reduce maximum powder charge more than 5% for a starting load.
  5. Leanwolf

    Leanwolf Well-Known Member

    Try ol' Elmer's standard load: 22 grains of 2400 and a 240 grains bullet.

    You won't find that one "weak." :)

  6. jrop11

    jrop11 Active Member

    LOL I'm not trying to blow my hand off :) Just get a little bit of the old "What the heck is he shooting!?"
  7. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Well-Known Member

    NOTE: That load is right at or over any current published maximums, so approach with care.

    I will also note that in my 9.5" SRH, that particular load has proven safe, very accurate, and happens to clock right at 1550 fps with no leading using lazer-cast slugs.

    Jrop11- What firearm are you using?
  8. Remo-99

    Remo-99 Well-Known Member

    Powders like 2400, 296, etc. will give the 44mag the sting it is meant to have, producing magnum velocities within it's pressure limits. Were as the faster burning powders like Unique are good for taming 44mags back down to 44spl levels, when called for.
  9. Ol` Joe

    Ol` Joe Well-Known Member

    You want H110/W296. This powder will give all the FPS the 44 is capable of and offers great muzzle blast to boot!
    I use it in mine and the 1st time my dad saw me shooting it (about 35 yrs ago) he claimed I was scorching the grass 20 yd down range. :D :D
  10. flipajig

    flipajig Well-Known Member

    LOL at scorcheing the grass.. The two pdrs that im using in my SBH are W231 and 2400
    the 2400 load is running at 1250 rpms and my 231 is just over 800 with cast bullets and im happy. both are accurat and a pleasure to shoot..
  11. jrop11

    jrop11 Active Member

    Hey Ben it's a Taurus 4 1/2" with a ported barrel. It's actually a great gun to shoot although the ribbed stock gribs are starting to break off. I know a lot of people have bad impression of Taurus, but this is my 3rd taurus and I think they are fine.
  12. myg30

    myg30 Well-Known Member

    2400 or H-110? Try them both.. you'll like em.

    Be safe, Mike
  13. jem375

    jem375 Well-Known Member

    I use Unique only for target loads...........7.5-8 grs is about the 44 special load and is a good target load....
    WW296 and H110 along with 2400 for the heavy loads....
  14. MovedWest

    MovedWest Well-Known Member

    Seriously if you want the :what: effect you should roll up with 2400. The cylinder and muzzle flashes will light up the range. If you want attention this is your powder.

    I was firing 21.0gr of 2400 behind my 240gr bullets at the range today. Not only did I draw a small crowd and a few questions, but I spurred conversation amongst a good share of the folks that I overheard talking about what the heck I was shooting. Many Dirty Harry references were made.

    Let's face reality though. The 2400 Elmer Keith used is different than what we're loading these days. With the current make-up of 2400 I think 22.0gr under a 240gr bullet is a bit too much, but 20-21gr is wickedly appealing and very accurate. ;)

  15. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Well-Known Member

    You are correct. Currently most manuals list somewhere between 20 and 21 grains of 2400 behind a 240 grain slug as a maximum charge in 44 magnum. Folks going past that do so at their own risk.

    The 22 grain charge mentioned by leanwolf and noted by me as a "good load" is just that, a good load in my gun,(which happens to be a big heavy framed gun) that was worked up to very carefully and slowly.

    It is most assuredly a maximum effort load, and should be approached with caution and the use of a chronograph.
  16. Martyk

    Martyk Well-Known Member

    Unique is a relatively slow burning pistol powder, so it will feel softer. Moving to something a little faster like some of the suggestions above will produce more of the SNAP you're looking for. I use H110 and that's got a pretty impressive muzzle blast.
  17. kelbro

    kelbro Well-Known Member

    I don't think that I would load 21-22gr of 2400 in a Taurus. Not knocking the Taurus but I think that would qualify as a 'Ruger only' load.
  18. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Well-Known Member

    Martyk, actually you've got it backwards. Unique is one of the faster powders, h110, 296, 2400, etc., are relatively slow as far as powders used in handgun calibers go.

    Slower powders give higher velocities because they hold a higher pressure for a longer period of time on the back of the bullet than a faster powder. And in some cases are actually easier on the gun because the peak pressure builds slower.

    Think of it as a hard heavy push vs. a hammer blow. The end result may be similar, but the methods used to get there aren't.

    EDIT: I see kelbro and I typed at the same time. I agree with him completely. You may find that heavy 22 grain load safe in your gun, but I would not recommend anything even approaching a steady diet of them in it.

    ADKWOODSMAN Well-Known Member

    Have a friend who tried the 12 gr. of Unique load and had to pound the cases out of a 629.
  20. fatelk

    fatelk Well-Known Member

    IIRC, the old Keith load was 22gr. 2400 with a 250gr bullet.

    What the others are saying is absolutely correct. I don't use 22 grains; 21 is max in my model 29. A friend has an old Dan Wesson, and 22 grains is fine in his gun. He would still load them with 21 though; less wear and tear on the gun, and safer if they accidently got used in a different revolver.

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