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Old February 9, 2014, 10:00 PM   #26
Sarge
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Beautiful '66, Doc!
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Old February 10, 2014, 05:58 PM   #27
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44-40 can be fussy. I know some folks have had bad luck with Remington 44-40. I believe they said the rims were too thick and the extractor did not always grab them, at least that's what I seem to recall. That's why I have always used either Winchester or Starline, never had any problems with either.

Are you going to shoot Black Powder out of it? That's all I shoot in my 44-40 rifles.
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Old February 10, 2014, 09:40 PM   #28
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Do yourself a favor and buy a Redding Profile Crimp die. Nice final crimp. I use mixed brass and have never had a problem but I use 200 grain soft lead bullets that are BP lubed and sized to .427 so they will chamber in my Colts. A 2.2cc dipper of Goex or other BP, seat and crimp a bullet and let 'er rip! This load works well in my Colts and my Uberti '73. Also does just fine in my two original 73's. I have been a cowboy action shooter for 18 years and started with .45's loaded with BP. I switched to .44-40 about 7 years ago and curse myself regularly for not starting out with that caliber.
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Old February 11, 2014, 05:31 PM   #29
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Nice, always admired these rifles.
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Old February 11, 2014, 06:00 PM   #30
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Royal

Good info. And I just happen to have a 2.2 scoop.
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Old February 11, 2014, 07:46 PM   #31
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Doc, slug the bore and see what size you really need. I'm bettin it will be .429
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Old February 11, 2014, 11:59 PM   #32
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That sure is attractive.
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Old February 12, 2014, 12:21 AM   #33
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Howdy again

Most current 44-40 rifles from Uberti are running .429, but my '73, which was made in the 1980s is .427. At present I own five rifles chambered for 44-40, some are .427, some are .429. I have compromised on .428 as my bullet diameter. I use the Big Lube Mav-Dutchman bullet sized to .428 and lubed with SPG in all my 44-40 rifles now. Yes, 2.2CC of FFg is what I use. It compresses about 1/16" to 1/8" when the bullet is seated.
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Old February 12, 2014, 12:42 AM   #34
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My Uberti revolvers were also sized at .429 and had very poorly made forcing cones. Terrible leading issues since I was shooting .427 bullets.

I re-barreled with proper 44-40 barrels and haven't looked back.

My '66 rifle doesn't have the same problem though.
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Old February 12, 2014, 04:23 AM   #35
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I have two differen Lee molds...

To use for this rifle.

The original is a 240 gr RNFP. The one I just purchased and haven't used yet is a 200 gr RNFP.

I got the second mold on the recommendation of one of our members who cautioned against heavy bullets in that rifle.

It sat well with me since I like a little speed.

I only have a sizer die (Lyman 450 press) for .44 Magnum and I can't recall the actual dimension it sizes to. I think it is .429. I also recall that most of my Lee molds produce a bullet which is slightly larger than the advertised diameter.

I have been traveling a lot and working a lot of hours for the University. I have even turned on my melting pot in about six weeks.

I gotta get my priorities straight.
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Last edited by Doc Hoy; February 12, 2014 at 04:55 AM.
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Old February 12, 2014, 02:06 PM   #36
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My Colts would not chamber .429's and the barrels slugged out at .427. My late 80's Uberti and my two original '73's are all .427. A soft lead bullet of .427 or .428 will obdurate into the bore even if the bore is .429-.430.
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Old February 12, 2014, 03:40 PM   #37
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Just got a copy of....

....SPG Lubricants BP Reloading Primer.

I am much disappointed to see that the .44-40 is absent from the list of cartridges discussed in the book.

Still I am pretty happy wif it.

Haven't slugged the bore yet.

I bought some Cowboy loads at the last gunshow and the slugs measure .426. Surprisingly smallish.
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Old February 13, 2014, 01:27 AM   #38
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Sweet rifle, doc, I love my 66 in .38scpl. Are you going to let the brass age or keep it polished.
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Old February 13, 2014, 05:32 AM   #39
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I have been polishing on it.

A discussion came up some time ago about the relative qualities of Neverdull in comparison with Brasso.

For this application, Neverdull works better for me.

I have the 66 as well as a Henry Big Boy in .45LC shining like a ruby in a goats A __ __.
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Old February 13, 2014, 01:26 PM   #40
Driftwood Johnson
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Quote:
....SPG Lubricants BP Reloading Primer.

I am much disappointed to see that the .44-40 is absent from the list of cartridges discussed in the book.

Still I am pretty happy wif it.

Haven't slugged the bore yet.

I bought some Cowboy loads at the last gunshow and the slugs measure .426. Surprisingly smallish.
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Howdy Again

I'm going to suggest you try the Big Lube Mav-Dutchman 200 grain bullet in your 44-40 loads if you are going to be shooting Black Powder. My experience with other bullets, even the ones that stated they were for Black Powder, is that they did not carry enough lube to keep the bore lubed its entire length. Most 'BP' bullets are fine in revolvers, however most run out of lube about 6" before the muzzle, causing the fouling in the last 6" of the barrel to turn hard and crusty. This in turn ruins accuracy. Easy enough to fix by swabbing the bore a couple of times with your favorite water based BP solvent, but if you don't want to be swabbing the bore to maintain accuracy, the Big Lube family of bullets are the ticket. They carry a ton of BP lube. You want to see a nice Lube Star at the muzzle, indicating that the bullet still had some lube in it when it left the muzzle.

No sweat about 44-40 not being on the SPG website. Just use whatever bullet carries the most SPG you can get into the lube groove and use enough FFg (or FFFg) so that when you seat the bullet the powder is compressed by 1/16" to 1/8". That's all there is to it. No need for card wads or anything else, just compress the powder with the bullet. My standard BP 44-40 load is the aforementioned Mav-Dutchman bullet sized to .428 and lubed with SPG, seated over 2.2CC of FFg. I usually use Schuetzen, but any FFg will do. Don't use a heaping dipper full, scrape the dipper level at the top.

Regarding polishing the frame, if I owned a brass framed rifle, which I don't, I would not bother polishing it. BP fouling will bring a very pleasing patina to the brass in a short time.
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Old February 13, 2014, 01:58 PM   #41
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DJ

What lube sizer press do you use?

I have a Lyman 450. I like it but I do not recall a sizing die for .428.
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Old February 13, 2014, 04:24 PM   #42
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I used to use the RCBS, which is very similar to the Lyman, uses the same dies.

A few years ago I splurged on a Star. They will make up any dies you want. It is expensive, but when you are sizing 1000 slugs at a time it really kicks butt, can do them in a couple of hours. The best I used to be able to do with my RCBS was about 400 per night.

http://www.magmaengineering.com/comp...ners/click/14/

With the Star there is no top die, each bullet poops the one before it out the bottom. You just put in one, pull the handle, put in another one, pull the handle, etc. The other thing about the Star is it can fill the huge Big Lube lube groove in one shot. I used to have to run every bullet through the RCBS twice to squeeze out enough lube.
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Old February 14, 2014, 06:25 AM   #43
Doc Hoy
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As is frequently the case....

I was wrong.

You can get .428 sizer dies for the 450.

Looks like about thirty bucks.
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Old February 14, 2014, 11:04 AM   #44
Driftwood Johnson
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Slug your barrel first before you decide what size to size your bullets. I get good performance out of my .428 bullets in my .427 and .429 bores because my bullets are dead soft, pure lead. They bump up in the bore to fill the .429 rifling. I was using .427 bullets for all my rifles until I bought my Henry, which has the .429 groove diameter. That's why I compromised on .428.

With most modern Uberti 44-40 rifles you are going to find the groove diameter is .429. Standard lead bullet logic says to use a bullet .001 over groove diameter, or .430. However......................Uberti chambers can be tight. If using a .430 bullet in a tight chamber you might find that the bullet expands the case mouth enough that the rounds are stubborn to chamber. For example, my old Uberti 1873 with its .427 groove diameter will shoot .427, .428, and .429 bullets just fine. However rounds loaded with .429 bullets can be a bit ornery to chamber because of the tight chamber. That is why I always used to go with Winchester 44-40 brass; it has the thinnest brass at the neck of any other brand, right about .007. Starline is pretty thin too. If one uses a brand of brass that is a tad thicker at the mouth, just a thou or so, with a 'large diameter bullet' like .429 or .430, that can result in a round that is stubborn to chamber. The thinnest brass is the most forgiving if you need to use 'large diameter bullets'.

Slug your bore, then make an informed decision about what diameter to size your bullets. If they are cheap enough, it might not hurt to buy a couple of different diameter sizing dies.
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