1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Loads for IMR 4198 and Marlin 444...

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by gmbailey21, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. gmbailey21

    gmbailey21 Member

    First, let me start out by stating that I do have a couple of loading manuals (including Lee), but I'm not finding a lot of data out there for IMR 4198, though in the product description it outright states that it is perfect for the .444 Marlin. Even IMR/Hodgon's site is focused on H4198 and ignores IMR altogether.

    So, I wanted to see if anyone has a load in their manual for IMR 4198 and the Hornady 300 Gr XTP round. I'm looking at using 40 gr as of now, which looks safe based on a few posts about people using up to 46 gr for the same thing (which seems really hot).

    If you can post what manual you are posting from, that'd be great also, as I'm looking for another to grab, but not sure which is the better investment (Lyman, Speer, Barnes, etc). I'm loading for .444, .30-30 currently, likely to get into the 38 Special +p, 45 ACP, Marlin 338 Express and 7mm-08 in the coming year(s) as well. I seem to mostly use IMR, Hodgon, and Ramshot powders thus far.

    On a related note, I've read a few places where folks are using Unique as well for the .444, though I have yet to find anywhere posting loading data for it (beyond those posts from the indiv using it). Is that safe, does anyone have a source for reliable load data for doing that? Seems would be much cheaper to load with Unique if it works well and is safe (think it was around 12.9 grain for a 240 grn bullet) in terms of a bottle of powder going at least 3 x further.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Landric

    Landric Well-Known Member

    I use the 300 grain XTP in .444, but I use H4198 and H322. With 40 grains of H4198, I get right at 2000 fps from a 22" barrel, with 48 grains of H322 and a 330 grain WFNGC, I get just under 2100 fps from the same gun.

    I know that isn't what you are looking for, but I thought I'd share.
  3. Kernel

    Kernel Well-Known Member

    Typically, Unique is used for reduced velocity loads. For practice & plinking with lead bullets. 1600 fps on down to "cat sneeze" velocities. It's great for that. For full performance loads stick with a proper rifle powder.
  4. RidgwayCO

    RidgwayCO Well-Known Member

    CAUTION!! The Hornady 6th Edition manual lists IMR 4198 with their 300gr HP/XTP bullet in the .444 Marlin. Starting load is 30.4gr with 39.7gr as a MAXIMUM (COL = 2.535"). The two top-performing powders are listed as VV N130 and H335.

    Personally, when working up loads I try to get data first from the bullet manufacturer, then the powder manufacturer, then other sources. The internet may not be my last source for loading data, but it's close.
  5. Kernel

    Kernel Well-Known Member

    Interesting. VV N130 and H335 are much slower and a long ways from 4198, on a powder speed chart. N130, I could see, but H335 seems like it would be way to slow for best performance in the .444 Marlin.
  6. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    I would think IMR3031 would be a better choice in the .444 Marlin than IWM4198 but that's only a guess on my part.
  7. gmbailey21

    gmbailey21 Member

    Thanks for sharing!

    It sounds like I'm at about the right spot. I did want to use H322 or H4198, but powder is scarce in my neck of the woods, and they were not available. If I took a 3 hour drive to the middle of nowhere, I know a place that likely would have them, but I've already done that twice last month and it gets pretty old pretty quick.

    Next best that they had at the local shops (checked 4) was IMR4198, which showed that it was good for this caliber, but data was not available for the larger bullet in my manuals or the Hodgdon site. I've got H335, but was avoiding that as it looked like a proper load would likely be compressed. I may play with that a little bit later to compare the two and see what performs better.

    Others have commented on RL7, but I've avoided it as I've heard that it can be temperature sensitive.

    Between the Hornady and Lyman manuals, which is a better buy in terms of most load data?

    Thanks again for the replies!
  8. gmbailey21

    gmbailey21 Member

    Chatted with a tech at Hornady, and he said the 39.7 max load had a pressure of 42,000, and the cartridge can safely go to 44,000, so he said 40 was fine, but was def about max for my Handi-Rifle.

    H335 goes from 35.6-51.3 gr, though I can't imagine cramming anywhere near 51.3 gr in the case
  9. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    Temperature sensitive powders don't usually show adverse effects from the cold until the temperatures are well below zero degrees so if you aren't going to be shooting in very cold weather I wouldn't worry too much about that.
  10. gmbailey21

    gmbailey21 Member


    Just to update, I ended up reloading all shells to 39.5 gr IMR 4198 as my scale ended up being off, so that 40 gr load actually ended up being 40.2, which was too far out of my comfort zone. As per Hornady's suggestion, I loaded to the second cannulure since that is where they got their data from.

    Just didn't want to leave a post hanging with posted load data that wasn't used.

    I don't know where the person got the 39-43 load data, but heck, that's way out above pressure max for the second cannulure. (Note: not attacking the poster, just questioning the data that was posted on that pay site) Maybe those loads are for the first cannulure? Would it be safe to start at the low end (39) with the first cannulure and work up using a Chrony and stop when you hit 2050 fps as long as you don't see pressure signs? Are there any other pressure signs than the common primer/brass stuff to watch for on a breach load gun?


Share This Page