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Old August 5, 2013, 09:49 AM   #1
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I have a new practice load for my 44

I guess I'm still seeking some advise but, I am looking for a lower end load to keep myself in practice. I hunt with a Sierra 210 JHC over 26 grs of W296. These are not fun to practice with and I don't like top strap errosion. I loaded the same bullet over 15.5 grs of AA no.5. These rounds seemed to do what I wanted. They shot nice groups at 50 yards and the numbers were very nice through the chrono using a 10 shot sample.


If anyone has some loads on the milder side that I could try give I would appreciate the info. I am pretty set on the bullet and not really interested in loads using a 240 gr bullet. I do have a couple of boxes of Hornady 200 gr HP XTP's and would take some help with those.

Thanks in advance.
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Old August 5, 2013, 10:57 AM   #2
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12 grains of Power Pistol with that bullet should get you about 1200 fps I would think. I don't shoot many 200 grain bullets in my .44s so I don't have any real data.

How much lower were you wanting to go?
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Old August 5, 2013, 10:59 AM   #3
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For practice, load your bullet weight to about 1000 fps with a position insensitive powder like Tightgroup. Around 6.5 grains with a 7½" barrel. That'll be good for practice and won't punish you or the gun. For practice I would also move to cast bullets. Lee makes a 214 grain SWC mold that should produce close enough weight for you if you cast. At the low pressure and velocity of that load you won't need gas checks.
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Old August 5, 2013, 11:23 AM   #4
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My light load for 180 & 200 gr bullets in the 44 was about 10.4 gr Unique, but now I'm out of Unique.
15.5 gr of #5 sounds like a lot. Is that load from a Sierra manual?
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Old August 5, 2013, 12:41 PM   #5
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15.5 grs of AA 5 is a published load. I think Sierra manual is correct and is near max. I guess I'm not real familiar with the faster burning powders and not having a full case freaks me out.

I thank you all for the input and was wondering if using 6.5 grs, 10.0 grs, or 12.0 grs of powder would require a filler as well? I assume Tightgroup being position insensitive means I do not.

I like the sound of 1200 fps and to answer Unclenick, I do not cast my own. I am not adverse to buying some bulk cast bullets and giving that a try.
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Old August 6, 2013, 04:19 AM   #6
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I've loaded plenty of rounds for my 44 in weights ranging from the 180's up thru the 300's. In most cases they were for hunting so were pretty much on the top end of the spectrum using 296.

My favorite loads with jacketed bullets have, for the last 10 or so years, been using the Remington 240gr SJHP on top of 23.5grs of 296. I understand your thought process on not really wanting the heavier bullet, but what I have found is in most cases the sharp felt recoil is reduced when using them to more of a push. When compared to the 180gr loads I shot for the first 5-8 years I was loading, they are almost in the target load range to me. Don't get me wrong you definitely know they go off, but it is not near the concussion or stinging palm felt like when using the lighter stuff.

Recently my friend and I have headed down the cast bullet road. In such we have been playing with several powders I haven't used much in this caliber. We have both found that the Accurate powders 5,7, & 9 are great when used with cast allowing a much wider spread of loads. Not to say that plenty of others out there aren't equally as good, just that we still are loading hunting rounds and with the cast bullets you have to be a bit more on top of things to keep from leading up your barrel. With the Accurate powders this is pretty easily accomplished.

I also suggest you look into some cast for your project. In fact you might even find you like them more. One word on them though, don't get caught up in the "hard cast" thing. In most cases you do not need anything harder than around 14 BHN ranges to load up into the magnum velocities. Pick out a nice medium weight SWC or RFN type bullet with a decent BHN and go have fun. You can use the faster powders for more sedate loads and still use the Accurate powder on them as well to work up into hunting load ranges.
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Old August 7, 2013, 11:51 PM   #7
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You could use Trail Boss; it would fill the case and give you a nice light target load.
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