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Old May 21, 2019, 07:26 AM   #1
John0011
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how does IMR 4227 and Alliant 2400 meter

Going to starting to reload 44 magnum in a month or so.

I did a little searching on the forum, and came up with IMR 4227 and Alliant 2400 as a decent powder choice.

I own a progressive press, so I was wondering how these two meter.

I also have CFE, Autocomp, and Longshot, they all meter quite well.
I looked up recipes on hodgdons website and those three that I have showed up.
Anny thoughts on CFE, Autocomp, and Longshot for a 44 magnum?
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Old May 21, 2019, 07:52 AM   #2
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The best metering and most common powders for maximum loads in the 44 Magnum are spherical propellants. H110 and 296 (actually both St. Marks WC296 in the Hodgdon and Winchester brands, respectively) and more recently Alliant's Power-pro 300MP, Ramshot Enforcer, and Accurate's 11FS.

2400 is a flake powder. 4227 is an extruded powder. Neither will meter as well as the spherical powders and neither will be dead accurate in your progressive. You might have to try both to see which one did better.

None of the above powders will do well for reduced loads. Powders capable of achieving maximum velocities don't usually burn cleanly at lower pressures and temperatures. Indeed, the minimum loads for H110/296 famously cannot be reduced below book by more than about 3% without risking squibbing out and leaving a bullet stuck in the barrel than can cause a burst gun if the next round is fired into it.
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Old May 21, 2019, 08:20 AM   #3
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I think 2400 will measure well enough and is fairly flexible.

As U says, you must be honest with yourself; do you mean to load MAGNUMS that would make Elmer proud, or do you want something more comfortable?

If the latter, look at powders recommended for .45 Colt. CFE-P or Universal will work.
A STARTING load for CFE-P will get you 1100 fps in .44 Magnum. Universal STARTS at 850 fps. (240 gr cast.)
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Old May 21, 2019, 08:44 AM   #4
buck460XVR
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Originally Posted by Unclenick View Post
Indeed, the minimum loads for H110/296 famously cannot be reduced below book by more than about 3% without risking squibbing out and leaving a bullet stuck in the barrel than can cause a burst gun if the next round is fired into it.
Yet Hodgdon themselves, the distributor for H110/W296 publish starting loads that are more than 10% below their max.

IMHO, 2400 and 4227 both meter quite well.
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Old May 21, 2019, 09:04 AM   #5
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IMHO, 2400 and 4227 both meter quite well.
I agree, and regularly use IMR4227 in my .41 Magnum carbine loads. Dropping 20grn per charge there is very little statistical variation between measured and dropped charges. Although both are considered magnum-level powders, I look at those 2 as '90% magnum loads'... they will give you velocities noooooot quite the level of H110/W296, but they also deliver that without the blast and flash of those, and allow some amount of flexibility with charge weight, H110/W296 do not.

I have also used IMR4227 in some .45 Colt pistol loads... they did not do well, way too much unburnt powder/crud in the barrel. I'll stick with Unique there...
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Old May 21, 2019, 09:06 AM   #6
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Yet Hodgdon themselves, the distributor for H110/W296 publish starting loads that are more than 10% below their max.
You're close, with a 240 grain bullet it's a little less than 10% in reference to WW296/H110. It's 23.0min/24.0max. Still,not a lot of wiggle room. Anyway, why not use the most accurate load that's at mag levels or close to it? Why the hang-up on something less than the most accurate? Try all of them and see what's the best in your gun. FWIW, I've owned numerous 44mags over the years and I've never seen anything shoot better than 296/110. Second place for me has been 2400...which is pretty flexible.
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Old May 21, 2019, 09:11 AM   #7
John0011
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Quote:
As U says, you must be honest with yourself; do you mean to load MAGNUMS that would make Elmer proud, or do you want something more comfortable?
I defiantly will be loading something that won't make me want to stop shooting after 20 rounds. A comfortable put some holes in paper round.

Also, I was at the range a few years ago. I had my 40 s&w going pop, pop, pop.
And then all of a sudden there was a KABOOM, and the right side of the range lit up.

And I will defiantly have to load some of those. So I suppose mild to wild.

Quote:
Indeed, the minimum loads for H110/296 famously cannot be reduced below book by more than about 3% without risking squibbing out and leaving a bullet stuck in the barrel than can cause a burst gun if the next round is fired into it.
Thanks for the heads up.

I looked up H110/296 on hodgdons website with a few different bullet weights
, and threw in CFE, Autocomp, and Longshot since they show up as an option.

H110/296 is the fps winner in every bullet weight, and if it meters well. Sounds like a good place to start.

Would loading with CFE, Autocomp, and Longshot that I have a bunch of, be a bad idea?
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Old May 21, 2019, 12:42 PM   #8
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IMR4227 just doesn't seem to perform well for me for all the same reasons already mentioned, and then there is something about the smell of burnt 4227. Can not put my finger on it, but the smell is somewhat less than pleasant to me. Not a reason for not using it, but...
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Old May 21, 2019, 01:46 PM   #9
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Would loading with CFE, Autocomp, and Longshot that I have a bunch of, be a bad idea?
Never tested Autocomp with the .44 Mag, but CFE Pistol and Longshot work well in .44 Mag. Good for nice 'almost' a magnum loads (around 1100fps) . I shy away from true Magnum loads as they really are no 'fun' to shoot. When I do load up a few the nod goes to 2400. {edited } Forgot to add both CFE Pistol and Longshot meter well.
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Old May 21, 2019, 04:38 PM   #10
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Uncle Nick Covered it, but . . .

. . . I'll add on my experience a little.

2400 meters quite well enough for any of my applications. It's also a bit forgiving if you wish make somewhat reduced loads ("forgiving" relative to its contemporaries - W296, 4227, etc - it's still a magnum propellant). It also doesn't need a magnum primer. If you're going for max velocity, it may come up a little short, however.

W296 meters superbly and performs equally well. True, it shouldn't be used in reduced loadings; but why would you? It's made for wide open throttle applications and is a top performer. That's what it does. And it smells good burning - just an added plus.

Starting a couple years ago, I switched from W296 to 2400. I'm getting a little older. Arthritis and tendonitis have set in. Recoil isn't quite my thing these days. So I moved to 2400 because it behaves more consistently when you de-tune your ammo down a bit. W296 simply doesn't do that.

But . . . I recently discovered that my 2400 ammo isn't quite as accurate going through my Marlin 1894. So last week MidwayUSA had free hazmat and I picked up a # of W296 (along with other hazmat stuff). I attempted to phase it out of my inventory, and now it's back
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Old May 21, 2019, 05:43 PM   #11
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Mostly I load my .44 mags using 4227, but I load slightly compressed loads, so near max velocity for 4227 anyway.

It metered pretty consistently through my Lee PPM for years; maybe 3,000 rds. Variance was always between 0.1 and 0.2 grains. Close enough for my purposes.

Now I'm on a RCBS powder measure, with about the same results.

You can't really load 4227 light though; it won't burn completely that way. And I use a medium crimp.

Funny thing about 4227, it doesn't kick that violently IMO. It seems to be more of a big push. Which is why I like using it. YMMV of course.
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Old May 21, 2019, 07:48 PM   #12
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Yeah, 4227 likes pressure and a magnum primer. Works ok. However the ES just wouldn't come down in my tests. From 17.0g to 23.0g under 240g SWC it varied between 147fps to 63fps.
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Old May 21, 2019, 08:21 PM   #13
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I occasionally shoot a 44 Redhawk. It's my bear protection piece when at my cabin. A constance carry the 44 is. Since I prefer home cast G/c 240 gr linotype for those big Black brusers. I always have had good luck shooting 4227. Pin point accuracy shot after shot when required I've come to count on.
Alliant 2400 on the other hand? I never cared to use dirty pistol powders but it ain't bad shoot'in in my 32 special with cast G/c or paper patched lead near a 6-7 BHN.

At one time I loaded my 44's on a Lee progressive 1000 when I had color in my hair. In its powder measure 296 was typical. Although for many years since way back when. Today my cartridges are all balance beam single stage produced. "Kind'a like the hands on approach when it comes to a >single 44 shot made up close & in my personal space."
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Old May 21, 2019, 09:07 PM   #14
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Today my cartridges are all balance beam single stage produced.
Mine have always been on a single stage and balance beam. I just don't go through enough ammo to justify it. Of course I don't shoot semi-auto type pistols/rifles so I don't 'buzz' right through it.

Speaking of 4227, I do like it for a given load in .45 Colt. John Taffin liked it and I found it worked good for me too. I stopped using it though as I went though 3 times the powder when compared with say Green Dot, and 4227 is more expensive to boot.
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Old May 22, 2019, 12:20 AM   #15
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IMR4227 just doesn't seem to perform well for me for all the same reasons already mentioned, and then there is something about the smell of burnt 4227. Can not put my finger on it, but the smell is somewhat less than pleasant to me. Not a reason for not using it, but...
My first experience with IMR4227 was in my .41 pistols... and I thought the same thing... ewww! But once I switched it to my rifle... where the burn is more complete... I didn't have that problem.

Quote:
Funny thing about 4227, it doesn't kick that violently IMO. It seems to be more of a big push. Which is why I like using it.
I think the same thing, even in the Marlin. Granted, the recoil impulse of W296/H110 isn't terrible in the rifle, but it is noticeably sharper.
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Old May 22, 2019, 06:09 AM   #16
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Have used 2400, H110/W296, Enforcer, IMR4227, and CFE Pistol. All have metered very well for me, as opposed to some of the larger flake shotgun/pistol powders.

For max velocity at top accuracy in the 44 Mag H110/W296 is probably the best choice if you don't mind the muzzle blast. As stated, 2400 seems to reduce better than most of the other "magnum" powders. CFE works fine in the 44 Mag if you are looking for less velocity.
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Old May 22, 2019, 02:54 PM   #17
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My preference in the .357 and .44 magnums is 2400. I've tried W296 and don't care for the more piercing muzzle blast and apparently heavier recoil. A load I like in my .44 Spl. is Skeeter Skelton's pet load of 7.5 gr. of Unique and a 240 gr. Elmer Kieth style bullet. My cast bullets come out closer to 250 gr. but that's OK with me. I'm thinking I can come close to that load in the magnum with somewhere around 9.5 to 10.0 gr. of Unique. That'll be a lot easier on my 80 year old wrists. Problem is supposedly Unique doesn't work all that well in a progressive although when I was loading 9MM on a Dillon 500B, it threw 5.0 gr. of Unique without any problem.

Elmer Keith's pet load of 22.0 gr. 2400 and his bullet was quite hard on my S&W 629 .44 Mag. It's gone back for repair twice so I've cut the load back to 20.0 gr. and only shoot it sparingly. I have some of the older Lyman manuals and there is a one page article in one of them by Elmer Keith and he admits to using 5.0 gr. of Bullseye and his bullet for most of his practice. He stated that at 25 yards it hit to the same point of impact as his full power load. Seriously it does come close in my 629 but my bullet is as mentioned a tad heavier.

I tried 4227 years ago, in the mid to late 1970's as I recall. Frankly, I don't remember how it worked for me in a Ruger Blackhawk, that's Blackhawk and not the Super Blackhawk. Any full power load in that gun was stout as it's rather on the light side. It as well as my 629 enjoy semi-retirement these days with a Super Redhawk and Super Blackhawk taking up the strain.
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Old May 22, 2019, 03:58 PM   #18
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I've tried a bunch of different powders in 44 mag, from 750 fps target loads up to 1500 fps hunting loads. After much testing, I've settled on 3 loads that work
with great accuracy and effectiveness. All loads are below book maximum and safe in my revolvers, but may not be in yours. Start low and work up.

Target/Plinking . . . 240 gr plated or coated flat nose, 6.0 gr of 700X or Red Dot, CCI300 primer @ 850 fps.

Home Defense/Field Use . . . 180 gr XTP, 13.8 gr of LongShot, WLP primer @ 1400 fps.

Hunting . . . 300 gr WFN-GC, 17.5 gr of 4100, WLP primer @ 1225 fps.

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Old May 22, 2019, 05:10 PM   #19
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2400 meters very well. I've not gotten around to trying 4227 but I bought a couple cans for my K-Hornet and .17 Hornet...

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Old May 22, 2019, 06:48 PM   #20
buck460XVR
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Originally Posted by NoSecondBest View Post
You're close, with a 240 grain bullet it's a little less than 10% in reference to WW296/H110. It's 23.0min/24.0max. Still,not a lot of wiggle room. Anyway, why not use the most accurate load that's at mag levels or close to it? Why the hang-up on something less than the most accurate? Try all of them and see what's the best in your gun. FWIW, I've owned numerous 44mags over the years and I've never seen anything shoot better than 296/110. Second place for me has been 2400...which is pretty flexible.
With the two other cartridges I use H110/W296 for, it's over 10%. Still, even the .44 mag loads are a far cry from the 3% reduction, and that was my point.

As for the accuracy thing. Most of us that handload, load for accuracy first. That does not always mean highest velocity. Having pinpoint accuracy as opposed to just fair accuracy that's running 50 FPS faster, to me is what I'm after. It's obvious that many folks prefer the extra 50 FPS.

From my experience IMR4227 does not work well in .357 because of the small case capacity. It does moderately well in .44 with it's larger case capacity. It does not give me highest velocity, but in some firearms it gives me superior accuracy......like in my 77/44 carbine and my P.C. 629 Magnum hunter. IME, IMR4227 likes a full case of powder, that is nearly to slightly compressed. It like a heavy crimp, heavy bullets and long pipes. It is my go to powder for 300gr hunting loads in my P.C .460 Compensated Hunter revolver.

The OP is looking for something he can comfortably shoot all day with. Depending on his platform, that may or may not be obtainable with H110/W296. It can be done with IMR4227. It might be dirty, but it won't stick a bullet.
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Old May 23, 2019, 08:01 AM   #21
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The OP is looking for something he can comfortably shoot all day with. Depending on his platform, that may or may not be obtainable with H110/W296. It can be done with IMR4227.
That being the case, the OP might look at Unique, etc, in lieu of the slow-burners. Wanting Magnum-level loads that can be shot all day is an oxymoron. I'm not familiar with the other 3 powders he mentioned, so I can't comment on those.
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Old May 23, 2019, 08:09 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Charlie_98 View Post
That being the case, the OP might look at Unique, etc, in lieu of the slow-burners. Wanting Magnum-level loads that can be shot all day is an oxymoron. I'm not familiar with the other 3 powders he mentioned, so I can't comment on those.
While I agree that neither 2400 or IMR4227 are the best powders for reduced recoil magnum loads(loads do not have to be at max velocities to be considered "magnum", in fact, all they have to be is above standard .44 special velocities.), they will work. Unique would be my choice too, but the OP may have qualms about it's metering properties.
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Old May 24, 2019, 01:33 AM   #23
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Well, 2400 is good for what it's good for, and the spherical propellant that matches it is AA-9, which I like better. The load data and the results are nearly the same for both powders, but AA-9 meters like water and it has less tendency to make a fireball upon firing. I'm a 45 Colt guy, myself, but I do take it into the +P realm at times where it is in magnum territory. I like IMR-4227 and AA-9 for this purpose. W-296 will work OK, but only for maximum Ruger-Only loads as it needs higher pressures to work well. For that reason, I don't really like it and I feel that it is better suited to the higher pressure of the 44 magnum. Still, if you want to throttle your 44 back a little, reducing the heaviest recoil, while delivering some pretty high performance, then AA-9 is worth a try. If I want to get 1,200 fps out of 255 grain bullets, AA-9 is just about ideal.
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Old May 24, 2019, 07:26 AM   #24
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That being the case, the OP might look at Unique, etc, in lieu of the slow-burners. Wanting Magnum-level loads that can be shot all day is an oxymoron.
Gotta agree with Paul's recommendation...Unique is a great powder for mid-level loads in any .44, be it Magnum or Special. I load all of my handgun ammunition on a Dillon 550B, using the Dillon powder measure and find that Unique varies +- 0.1 grain for the most part.

At the load levels I use in my .44's, (7.5 gr to 9.5 grain with 240 gr LSWC's) that's more than acceptable as I'm getting sub-2" grouping with good bullets at 25 yds from a rest. Skelton's famous load (7.5 gr of Unique behind a good 240 gr LSWC in .44 Special brass), is my go-to for all normal carry and practice, about 950 fps depending on barrel length with moderate recoil. The same results can be had in Magnum brass with a bit over 8.5 grains of Unique.

For better metering than Unique, try Winchester 231, a vary versatile powder for light to moderate loads. It meters 100% better than Unique and with charges that are roughly a grain lighter than Unique, produces similar velocities and equal accuracy, magnum or special, it matters not.

While 2400 and 296 meter well, they're magnum level powders in my use, and reserved for that application. As such, I rarely load with them, preferring a lighter, read: slower, milder combination. I use 296 for deer hunting loads in my Marlin 336 Texan in .44 Magnum.

Hope this all helps...but I'd add, that with any good 240 gr. LSWC or jacketed bullet, a .44 Magnum is easy to work with. Accuracy is easy to find, assuming the barrel isn't completely ruined. For lead alloy bullets try 0.430" or larger for best accuracy. Commercially cast bullets have hard lube and this may not prevent leading at slower velocities...a sometimes quick cure is to re-lube using Lee's swirl lubing technique with Lee Liquid Alox diluted 30% with paint thinner.

YMMv Rod
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Old May 24, 2019, 11:14 AM   #25
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Good advice from Rodfac. I burn more up Unique than any other pistol powder. If I really want more velocity than it can deliver, I will have to burn twice as much AA-9, or even more of the slower burning powders to do so. I could live with Unique as my only pistol powder and be just fine.
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