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Old July 13, 2005, 07:00 PM   #1
Buzzard
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New to Reloading, .44 mag

Hi all, I am glad to have found this forum.
Now I have a Lee 3 hole turret press and my dies then I went to a local shop that was going out of business, I got a LB of hp-38 real cheap, last bottle and they wanted to get rid of the powder.....
anyone use this for a .44 mag.
I will be shooting these out of a Ruger SBH with 7 1/2 " barrel that is
magna-ported.
any help would be welcome, oh yeah, I also have to reload for a .38 and a .45 ACP, and a 9mm
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Old July 14, 2005, 12:39 AM   #2
Smokey Joe
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Welcome!

Buzzard--First of all, welcome to The Magnificent Obsession! I mean reloading.

You got a lot of neat stuff. There is a welter of stuff out there. So before you try buying anything, before you can start cranking out those lovely rounds, you need to STUDY UP. Yeah, I know. BO-ring!

But we are dealing with some nasty hot gases here, and some fiendish pressures, as you know from shooting previously, and the thing you never want to do is end up proving that the lab geeks who wrote the loading manuals were right after all. Doing that generally ruins your Old Betsy for starters, if not you too.

THE BEST primer, IMHO, for newbies--and old hands too--is
The ABC's of Reloading which is newly out in a 7th edition. Get it from your local gun shop, a gun show, on the I'net, or from the publisher, www.krause.com It will explain what to do, what not to do, and what stuff you actually need in addition to yr Lee. (Yeah, there are some real handy items that the manufacturer doesn't include!) Finding a friend who reloads is a great help--reloaders are almost always pleased to indoctrinate beginners, and forums like this are an excellent place to get questions answered.

But there is nothing so comforting as having directions right there in front of you in black and white when you're trying to get started. Having digested the ABC's, you also want a loading manual. This is a book of recipies for various loads. Most of the bigger manuals contain a how-to, but they're nowhere near as thorough as the ABC's. The best of the major manuals is, IMHO, Lyman's 48th edition. www.lymanproducts.com There are also a series of loadbooks of recipies just for one cartridge, The Complete Reloading Manual for (fill in cartridge) put out by www.loadbooks.com. These are ONLY recipies, no how-to at all.

Lee equipment comes with good directions, but they are specific to that piece of equipment. I would still reccommend reading up in The ABC's before sizing my first piece of brass, were I you.

Anyhow, once again, welcome. When you get it all sorted out it's an essentially simple operation we do. It's the sorting out that gets tough. May you enjoy reloading for many years.
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Last edited by Smokey Joe; July 14, 2005 at 11:49 AM. Reason: clear up bad wording
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Old July 14, 2005, 11:00 AM   #3
tjhands
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For .44 Magnum I use H-110 and 2400.

For .38 and .45ACP (and light .44 rounds), I use W-231.

Pretty common powders.
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Old July 14, 2005, 04:53 PM   #4
Buzzard
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right now all I have is a lb of HP-38, I got it for less than 1/2 shelf price, it was last bottle and they are selling out. so I bought it, does anyone use this powder and any favorite loads, I have a .44mag, 9mm,.38,and .45 acp to reload, the guy at the shop said it would be a good all round powder....or was he just going for a sale ??????
thanks
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Old July 14, 2005, 05:24 PM   #5
mec
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HP 38 is closely identified with WW 231
My old Hogdon's Manual has some loads listed for HP38-.44 Magnum:
250 Lead SWC 5.4 grains 766 fps Pressure 11,400
Maximum 6.4 grains 889 fps 16,900 cup.


240 Jacketed 5.4 grains 845 fps Pressure 15,200 and Maximum
7.4 grains 1032 fps 23,400 copper units pressure.

These are very decent target level loads but you will need slower burning powder for the higher velocities.
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Old July 14, 2005, 08:03 PM   #6
Leftoverdj
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Yeah, Mec has it right. HP 38 is close enough to WW 231 not to make no nevermind. It's way fast for full house .44 Mag loads, but should make some very pleasant .44 Special level plinking loads. Try about 6.0 grains behind a 240 grain cast or swaged SWC.

Speaking of neverminds, pay no nevermind to those who claim you have to do enough research for a doctorial dissertation before you load the first shell. Stay well within book and you'll soon pick up what you need to know.
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Old July 14, 2005, 09:22 PM   #7
Smokey Joe
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Research

Leftoverdj--Like you, I guess, I found out/discovered/figured a lot on my own when I started reloading. I started with a Lee Loader and no help at all. I wasted literally years making little or no progress in making better ammo and in understanding what I was doing.

If a book like The ABC's of Reloading had been available when I started it would have saved me a lot of time, trouble, and uncertainty. If I'd then gone to a loading manual like Lyman's I'd have gained a lot more in understanding.

Had to do it all by myself, re-invent the wheel. Nowadays, that isn't necessary, and a lot of frustration can be saved. Of course, if you LIKE having to re-invent the wheel, go ahead, it's your life. Most people prefer to have their wheels ready-made.

BTW, a doctorate requires the reading of a few more books than 2, believe me. You also have to write one yourself. What I'm suggesting isn't all that much effort.
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Old July 14, 2005, 10:30 PM   #8
Leftoverdj
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Smokey, I get newbies started; I don't throw up roadblocks.

Anyone can learn to load perfectly serviceable ammo in half an hour. If they want to go past that, they can spend a lifetime at it. I'm up around 45 years and still learning, but I did not need all that to get started.

Fellow has a press, dies, and a can of HP-38, I tell him what will work. I don't tell him that he don't know enough to get started. Six grains behind a .430 240 grain cast will shoot better than most of us can. He won't get in any trouble with that, and he can move on when he is ready.

I have nothing against books. If it's in print and about shooting and reloading, I've probably read it. (Read some remarkable foolishness, too. Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook is full of foolishment.) Seen some published loads I would only shoot with someone else's gun and a fifty yard string. Seen some solid facts. You can't do better than Ken Water's "Pet Loads".

But a newbie don't need to know most of that. He can get what he needs to know right now off a Lee instruction sheet in under ten minutes if he is a slow reader. My favorite example is the High Master class PPC shooter who bought a Dillon 550 set up. All he knows or needs to know is to fill the tubes with Federal primers, the powder hopper with Bullseye, and to set a 148 grain HBWC on the case when it comes around.
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Old July 14, 2005, 10:30 PM   #9
Buzzard
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I looked at Hogdon's web page and am gonna use 11.0gr of HP-38 with 240 gr SWC........
is that too much or will it be ok since it was on the reloading page.
Thanks
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Old July 15, 2005, 12:24 AM   #10
Leftoverdj
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Buzzard, 11 grains of HP-38 behind a 240 SWC scares me pretty good. I found a couple of places that list that as a top load, but that ain't no place to start.
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Old July 15, 2005, 07:49 AM   #11
Buzzard
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I am listening, I decided to go with 6gr of HP-38 and a 240 gr SWC cast.
I hope to get out tomorrow and shoot some of these, right now it is gonna be 109 for a high today....here in Kingman AZ.
thanks for the help, I am also gonna get me some H-110
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