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Old December 30, 2005, 03:03 PM   #1
azredhawk44
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Really, Really Light .44Magnum Loads

I have been looking thru my loading manuals looking for super-light .44magnum loads.

I want my girlfriend to not be afraid of shooting this gun, or afraid of the numbers at the beginning of any particular bullet. I figure if she shot a pussycat .44 load, she wouldn't be so afraid of .45acp and other calibers starting with that dreaded "4".

Also, I don't really want to use .44special brass if I can avoid it. My magnum dies won't crimp it, nor will they bell the mouth without removing the primer pin and adding an extra stage.

I saw a load in my Lee manual (don't have the exact specs in front of me) but if IIRC, it said in a 240gr LSWC, I could run 4.7gr of Titegroup at about 800fps.

I consider titegroup to be very similar to unique. Unique's top-load for .44mag was comparable to Titegroup, but their bottom-end for .44mag was considerably higher.

Was this titegroup info a typo? Anyone have any other low-speed and inexpensive "pop-gun" .44magnum loads that are published that they can share?

I'd like to find something around 800-900fps for a 200gr bullet if at all possible. Don't have any 200gr Lead right now, but I will buy some to experiment with if anyone has a good recipe.

Also, who can recommend a good supplier of 250gr+ hard-cast bullets in the AZ area? The heaviest that Dillon has is 240gr. There's a guy in east mesa that does moly-coated bullets, but I don't like what those do to my dies. I'd like to get a stock of 300gr hard-cast flat faced lead. I'll settle for something around 275gr, but 300gr is ideal. I don't want to pay shipping, so local AZ vendors only, please.
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Old December 30, 2005, 06:45 PM   #2
Leftoverdj
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The really fast powders can be downloaded as far as you like with lead bullets. Five grains of Bullseye, 700X, AA-2, Red Dot, Green Dot, Trap 100, 231, HP-38, etc. will do what you want done with 200 grain bullets. Titegroup is not a powder I use, but it's in that range and should work fine.
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Old December 30, 2005, 07:42 PM   #3
Buzzard
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HP-38 powder - 5.5 gr. -- 240 gr lswc------800fps
This is a cowboy load and my wife likes it just fine, shge is 5 ft2 and 120, small framed and not an avid shooter......yet
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Old December 31, 2005, 05:07 AM   #4
Lloyd Smale
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try 3 grains of trail boss and a 200 cast bullet
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Old December 31, 2005, 08:45 AM   #5
sundog
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Another vote for 200 gr cast and GD or 231. Works for my grand kids just fine. sundog
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Old December 31, 2005, 09:40 AM   #6
MADISON
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Really lite .44 Magnum loads

Really lite .44 Magnum loads?
I use 5.0 grains of UNIQUE with any 240 grain bullet.
17.5 grains of 2400 with a 240 grain bullet.
If you are not satisfied with that, go to the bottom end of the .44 Special loading manual.
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Old December 31, 2005, 10:14 AM   #7
Quantrill
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5.5gr of 700X under 200 to 240gr cast bullet. You can go even lighter with the powder or bullet if you want. Quantrill
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Old December 31, 2005, 10:36 AM   #8
Cloudpeak
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I just got done doing some light load development for my 6 1/2" Ruger 44 Blackhawk. 14 grains of 2400 and a 250 Keith bullet was a very gentle shooter and accurate in my gun.

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Old December 31, 2005, 11:05 AM   #9
Edward429451
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I've went all the way down to 10.0g 2400 with a 180g cast wc. It recoils like a 22 at most and is accurate enough for general plinking and familierization.
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Old December 31, 2005, 09:10 PM   #10
Jim Watson
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Some old guy name of Elmer Keith liked 5 grains of Bullseye for light .44 Magnum target loads. Like Leftoverdj says, that load of about any fast burning pistol or 12 ga shotgun powder will work ok. One of our guys tried to load way down with 2400 and did not have as good results as Cloudpeak and Edward say.
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Old December 31, 2005, 11:04 PM   #11
maxwayne
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7.0 of Unique and a cast swc is pretty light.
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Old January 1, 2006, 08:06 AM   #12
WESHOOT2
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Use 'Cowboy' load data; safety first
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Old January 1, 2006, 11:04 AM   #13
Leftoverdj
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We, why would you think that any of the previously suggested loads are unsafe, or that data listed as "Cowboy Loads" is automatically safe?

I've seen some very bad data published. Crosschecking a half dozen manuals can be plumb educational.
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Old January 1, 2006, 01:05 PM   #14
WESHOOT2
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putz again

I made no mention of any post in this thread.

Any modern manual lists Cowboy data, and any manual used should be cross-checked, and any manual-maker has it in their best interest to offer safe, effective data.

Putz.
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Old January 1, 2006, 02:54 PM   #15
Tom Matiska
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Code:
......why would you think that any of the previously suggested loads are unsafe......
If I can make a necessary point without too much heat (hate to break my no flame resolution on 1 Jan, but....).

Because not one single load listed specifies primer. My manuals vary in their use of large pistol, magnum pistol, or large rifle primers,

My only squib experience with a light 44 Spec load happened on a cold December day here in PA with load that had never given me problems when I lived down south. More primer and crimp may have made it a better cold weather load.

Using a min load with less primer on a cold day (or max with more primer on a hot day) can be plumb educational too, ... but it can hurt more.
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Old January 2, 2006, 03:31 PM   #16
azredhawk44
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Thanks, guys.

I'm using Winchester large pistol primers. I've experimented with federal and cci primers, but don't really care for them. I've had seating problems with the cci's, and I don't like how the federals are packaged.

No problems with ignition on hot days (AZ), but no experience yet with cold weather ignition. These loads aren't really intended for reliability or self defense, just plinking. Of course, I don't want a squib anyways.

Where can I get some good .44mag "cowboy" data? Also, I have heard that using .44special load data for .44mag cases creates a lot of problems since the case volume is different. The powder level will sit below the primer hole and the spark will set it all off rather than a progressive burn. This can create an overpressure situation by using too little powder.

So, this 5.0gr Bullseye is under which bullet - 200gr or 240gr?
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Old January 2, 2006, 03:53 PM   #17
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http://www.hodgdon.com/data/cowboy/index.php

Hodgdon has some good cowboy loads
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Old January 2, 2006, 06:54 PM   #18
azredhawk44
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Okay, I need some enlightenment:

Buzzard posted a link to the cowboy loads for hodgdon powders.

One load there is: 200gr LRNFP w/ 4.5 - 5.4 gr of Titegroup.

In my Lee manual or my Hodgdon manual (both printed manuals on my reloading bench), 200gr LRNFP on Titegroup gets 5.0 - 6.6 gr.

So why is it safe to drop to 4.5 grains if I wear chaps and a 10-gallon hat, but otherwise is not safe to ever drop below minimum charge?
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