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.44 Magnum Hunting Loads

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Grubby, Jan 9, 2012.

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  1. Grubby

    Grubby Member

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    Hello,
    I feel like I am opening a potential can of worms here, but does anyone have and loads for hunting with a .44 Mag? Weight on the bullet does not matter, and we have no lead restraint laws here in Nebraska.
     
  2. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    Open a can of worms?
    There are many people who hunt with all kinds of handguns, including 44 Mag!
     
  3. birddog

    birddog Member

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    I use Magtech 240 gr SJSP pushed by 10.9 grains of Unique. It's a moderate load in my Taurus M44 (6 inch barrell) and has killed several deer cleanly from 5 yards to 75 yards, including my biggest mature 8 pointer ever.

    I also shoot 300gr cast Meister bullets over 8.3 grains of Unique in my Super Redhawk. Haven't shot at anything yet, other than targets, but I plan on bear hunting with it in the near future.

    Both rounds are accurate out to farther than I can accurately shoot under hunting conditions. The Magtech rounds have been lethal on deer even at extended handgun ranges, and are not hot at all. Much easier on the hand than factory Winchester White Box. They are PLENTY without being too much.

    The Meister loads are stout (because of the heavy bullets) but not at all unmanageable and I can shoot fifty of them at the range with no issues.

    Here's a thread about my first buck from 8 years ago! Lots of fun and more deer since then. Handgun hunting is addictive

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=114110

    As always, research your loads and don't go with what some guy on the internet says, but these are well within established guidelines.

    I truly enjoy my 44's much more with my moderate loads than with the factory loads that all seem to be hotter.
     
  4. skidder

    skidder Member

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    I do, and my favorite is Hornady 300 gr XTP with Accurate #9 powder. Tried and true on Whitetail.
     
  5. jimniowa

    jimniowa Member

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    I go along with the JSP over JHP in a 240g in a .44mag, IMO its a better overall bullet for hunting, a great bullet for thick skined hogs.
    Jim
     
  6. gunnie61

    gunnie61 Member

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    i use hornady 240gr xtp, 20.2gr 2400 powder cci 300 lpp with a col 1.6 crono @ 1325 fps average works well in my redhawk
     
  7. Nomad

    Nomad Member

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    There are a ton of good hunting loads out there for the 44 Mag. I'm sure a search here on this site would yeild volumes. My favorite is a 240-250 SWC hard cast bullet and 19.5 gr of 2400. It's not real hot but it works time and again.
     
  8. MovedWest

    MovedWest Member

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    +1
    Different from my hunting rounds by only .3 grains, otherwise my exact load. As always though, work up a load that's accurate in YOUR weapon.

    -MW
     
  9. critter

    critter Member

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    I shoot a Ruger Blackhawk Hunter with a Bisley grip. It shoots the following load VERY accurately. (It sports a 4X scope due to aged eyes!)

    I load 240 JHP (Rem) over a generous amount of H110-but under max.

    I have taken several whitetails and a few hogs with the load. It WORKS.
     
  10. jgiehl

    jgiehl Member

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    I like the 240 grain Speer hollow points, Hornady's same weight also work great.
    Cast performance bullets are outstanding in my book.
    I use the 300 grain CP bullets over 20 grains of h-110 with a CCI mag primer, but that's my bear load.
    A 255 Keith would probably work well too.
    As you can tell, a lot of them would probably do the trick.
     
  11. StrawHat

    StrawHat Member

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    When I carried and used a 44 MAgnum, I was loading the old Keith bullet (Lyman 429421) overa Kieth load of 2400 powder. It was and is a stout load. I finally settled on 21 grains with the Keith bullet. Same performance but less recoil.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
  12. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Firstly, you don't need a 300gr bullet for whitetail. A good cast 240-250gr SWC will fully penetrate from any angle. Which will do the job just fine at 900fps and above. If you wanna shoot a little flatter, the 240gr Gold Dot is a fine jacketed bullet and loves stout doses of 2400 and H110 for 1200-1400fps. I refuse to use any of the outdated, generic jacketed bullets such as those loaded in standard Remington and Winchester loads.
     
  13. Grubby

    Grubby Member

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    Thanks guys, I know for the loads I am just gonna work some up with Reloader #9, Hodgdon 110, Vhita Vuori N110, and some Accurate 2400. The bullets that I was thinking about using is either a Hornady 240 XTP, Hornady 225 FTX, Nosler 240 JSP or JHP, Sierra 240 JHC, or a Speer 240 DCHP. Is there anyone of those bullets that would throw up caution flags or are the all good for hunting?
     
  14. Steve in PA

    Steve in PA Member

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    My standard load is a 240gr XTP over 24.0gr of H110. I also load 300gr XTP's over 20.0gr of H110. Standard loads for my Ruger Super Redhawk.
     
  15. GTS Dean

    GTS Dean Member

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    23.6 gr of 2400 pushing a 200 gr Hornady XTP hollowpoint.
     
  16. 98Redline

    98Redline Member

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    I don't have any first hand experience however on a number of other hunting and reloading sites there seems to be more than a couple of people that have had issues with the 240gr XTP. Most of the issues deal with too rapid expansion and not enough penetration or the bullet comping completely apart. This seems to be opposite of the issues Hornady had with the XTP in years past which was inadequate expansion.

    For deer sized game, just about anything in the 240gr range will work and have more than enough salt to punch through a whitetail. Of what you mentioned, I would pick the JSP.

    All of that said, and this is not a question of killing ability, but overall accuracy and consistency, I have found that the heavy for caliber bullets (300 -330gr) shoot much more accurately from my .44s.

    My personal favorite is a 320gr WFNGC cast bullet over 21.5g H-110 and a Federal 150 LPP. Waaaaaaaaay more energy than I need for whitetail and pretty stout in the recoil department but these things shoot like a laser out of all of my guns so they are my go to hunting load.
     
  17. skidder

    skidder Member

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    unless, your gun is more accurate with a 300 gr.
     
  18. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    I've heard enough horror stories not to trust the XTP, in any weight. Which is why I give the nod to Speer for jacketed bullets due to their bonded core construction.


    I've got eight .44Mag's, four of which are Rugers, plus several .44Spl's and .44Colt's and have never had an issue finding an accurate load with standard weight bullets. Cast or jacketed. Nor have I ever heard of a .44Mag that only shoots well with 300's.
     
  19. skidder

    skidder Member

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    CraigC-- My Redhawk is more accurate with 300 gr. Sorry if that offends you. I never said he had to use 300 gr. bullets. I was just posting my favorite load, but his gun will let him know. Don't be such a grouchy pants.;)
     
  20. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Not being grouchy at all, thank you very much. Just sharing information. Why would I be offended by something so silly??? :rolleyes:
     
  21. skidder

    skidder Member

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    CraigC-- Ya... Sorry about that, I shouldn't have said that ;).

    I do use 240s for plinking, but when I start loading them hotter I loose a little accuracy. I'm sure there are some 240s out there that will group fine in my Redhawk, but I kinda stopped testing when I found a hunting load that grouped well for me (didn't want to spend anymore money finding out).
     
  22. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    No big deal. :)
     
  23. Steve in PA

    Steve in PA Member

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    I've been using the XTP's for a lot of years and every deer hit with them has gone down.

    The 240's are my standard deer load and I normally carry the 300's when bear hunting, however on my last two range trips before the season the 300's were shooting like crazy, so I just hunted with them for bothh deer and bear.
     
  24. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    The most effective would be 225 gr. XTP with H110 or 296 for maximum full house performance. There is not any other powder that produces higher magnum performance that H110 or 296. Choose the bullet weight you prefer, but a 225 gr. and even lighter bullet with those two powder's will deliver maximum velocity, while maintaining safe operating pressures. Other powders will tend to produce excessive pressures when trying to obtain the velocities these two powders are designed for.
    It is also necessary to use magnum primer's when using these powder's.
     
  25. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

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    I decided long ago that the nuclear nahd loads my dad and his buddies cooked up for the 44 Super Blackhawk Hunter were too much for my taste. AND they didn't feed at all in my 1894 Marlin rifle.

    My fave load for both 7.5 inch revolver AND 20 inch rifle is a 300 gr Prvi Partizan jacketed soft point.
     
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