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Old December 2, 1999, 04:46 PM   #1
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I just bought a Marlin 1894s in .44 magnum with the "Ballard" rifling that is supposed to be better for lead bullets than Micro-groove rifling. I'd like to work up a good lead bullet load for practice and small game; not necessarily a light load, more like a medium powered round that is accurate and feeds reliably. I would like to use the Keith style 250g. cast bullets, but am concerned that the sharp shoulder will hang up or get deformed on the edge of the loading gate.

Any suggestions on bullets, powders, crimping, cartridge length?

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Old December 5, 1999, 05:18 PM   #2
Paul B.
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Location: Tucson, AZ
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AEM. When I had a Marlin in .44 Mag. I used the Keith style bullet. They did hang up at times, and at other times they would run through fine. Go figure. Try to find a bullet without the Keith shoulder, such as those made by LBT. Unfortunately, LBT may no longer be, thanks in part to the I.R.S.!
Lee may have a bullet suitable for your rifle. I would look at bullets designed for cowboy shooting, that is a round nosed bullet with a flat point. I now have a Winchester Mod. 94 in .45LC that absolutely will not feed Keith type bullets. BUMMER! I've been using 230 gr. RN bullets desighned for the .45ACP. This rifle sure outshot my Marlin. Can't blame it on the Micro-Groove barrel though as it shot lead better than the jacketed. Again, go figure. (I think I had a lemon.)
Anyway, I hope this was of some help.
Paul B.
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Old December 9, 1999, 04:02 PM   #3
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lyman's 429266 is a 'cowboy' bullet introduced a couple of years ago that works well. it is 240 gr round flat nose. see a picture at under lead bullets or casting or something. in the mag case i crimp mine on the ogive instead of crimp groove. feeds well in model 92. sundog

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Old December 9, 1999, 04:16 PM   #4
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Thanks for your help. I took it out last weekend and fired it for the first time, using 240g Winchester factory jhp loads. What a blast! It was great fun to shoot and sure tore up some water filled jugs at 50-60 yards.

I'm looking forward to shooting some more affordable plinking loads, plus playing around with CCI shotshell loads. I don't imagine the shotshells will cycle through the action very well, but I plan to carry a few and load them one at a time through the ejection port in case I need to shred something at close range.

Now I want a .357!
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Old December 9, 1999, 04:42 PM   #5
Robert the41MagFan
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Oregon Trail cast bullets offer RNFP in sizes ranging from 200 grains to 300 grains. I exclusively use these cast bullets. They are very hard (24 BHN) and do not lead the barrel much.

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