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Old August 9, 2013, 08:50 AM   #1
Doc Hoy
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Experience with .44 Magnum, .44 Special in BP Cartridge

Guys,

I have not slugged the bore yet, but I am assuming it will be fairly standard when I do.

Standard sizing die for this revolver is .429.

Is there anyone out there who had to go to a larger sizing die for BPCR to keep the leading under control?
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Old August 9, 2013, 07:52 PM   #2
Hawg
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I used .430-432 cast bullets with no problems. Don't try that with a 44-40 tho.
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Old August 9, 2013, 07:58 PM   #3
Doc Hoy
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Thanks, Hawg

I took the plunge and bought a .429 sizer.

I'll see how it works and then if that don't work, I'll move to a .431.
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Old August 9, 2013, 09:04 PM   #4
Hawg
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Cast bullets should be .001-.002 over bore size. I should have mentioned that earlier.
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Old August 10, 2013, 12:45 AM   #5
Bezoar
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you want a lead bullet to be over bore size, but you can only make it as big as your chamber will allow.

You wont be getting magnum performance.
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Old August 10, 2013, 01:04 AM   #6
radom
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Its BP the sharp shock of the detonation will pound the slug up to bore size. Most any original loads used slugs that where under bore dia and pretty much just at grove diameter.
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Old August 19, 2013, 11:47 PM   #7
Malamute
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Uh, don't you mean that the other way around? Bore diameter is the size inside the tops of the lands, the smallest possible part, what the barrel was bored before it was rifled. Groove diameter is the largest part.
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Old August 20, 2013, 12:50 AM   #8
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Your problem is more than likely NOT the size/diameter of the bullet--but the alloy from which it is made.

Consider this....

You are probably experiencing a LOT of leading in .44 Special, even with smokeless powder--if you are using a hard cast bullet. Ditto with .44 Magnum with BP loads.

.44 Special smokeless pressures hover right around the 9000-10,000 psi level. You'll find the same with BP loads, which burn at a much softer rate than smokeless.

In the Magnum round, you have the same with BP cartridges. Smokeless loads, however, start around 15K psi and can go as high as 40K. This is more than enough to make the hard cast slug obturate to seal the bore. If you are using the hard cast bullets at low pressures, the bullet will not obturate--instead, you will have hot gas cutting around the sides of the cartridge. This will actually help to plate lead into the walls of the grooves and lands.

The solution is simple, especially if you cast your own. Use dead soft lead to cast your bullets for those black powder loads. For loads pushed at higher pressures--but still the lead bulleted loads--I would use nothing harder than wheelweights.
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