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Thread: Could use some help on .44 Special mild loads.

  1. #1

    Could use some help on .44 Special mild loads.

    I have a model 29 that I enjoy shooting very much, but after a few rounds of 240grs at 1100-1200 I have to set it down for awhile. I picked up a couple of hundred .44 Special brass in the hopes of coming up with a reduce load that will allow me to shoot this revolver more. To reduce the recoil I have settled on Oregon Trails 200gr cast bullet. Looking on the net I've only seen three powders that guys have recommended Red Dot, Titegroup and Power Pistol. You guys that shoot the .44 Special, what combination do you use? I was hoping to find a load that's accurate in the 700 to maybe 850 f.p.s. range. Any and all suggestions or advise is welcomed. Thank you. BCM

  2. #2
    Trailboss would be a great powder to use:

    Form Hodgdon's webpage:

    Case: Starline
    Twist: 1:20"
    Primer: Winchester LP, Large Pistol
    Barrel Length: 8"
    Trim Length: 1.155"

    BULLET WEIGHT
    200 GR. CAST LRNFP
    MANUFACTURER

    Trail BossBULLET DIAM.
    .430"C.O.L.
    1.450"
    STARTING LOADS
    GRS. VEL.(FT/S) PRESS.
    4.3 757 8,700 CUP
    MAXIMUM LOADS
    GRS. VEL.(FT/S) PRESS.
    6.3 885 13,200 CUP

  3. #3
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    In the desert, looking for water.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Boxcarman View Post
    I have a model 29 that I enjoy shooting very much, but after a few rounds of 240grs at 1100-1200 I have to set it down for awhile. I picked up a couple of hundred .44 Special brass in the hopes of coming up with a reduce load that will allow me to shoot this revolver more. To reduce the recoil I have settled on Oregon Trails 200gr cast bullet. Looking on the net I've only seen three powders that guys have recommended Red Dot, Titegroup and Power Pistol. You guys that shoot the .44 Special, what combination do you use? I was hoping to find a load that's accurate in the 700 to maybe 850 f.p.s. range. Any and all suggestions or advise is welcomed. Thank you. BCM
    Not what you were asking and likely not what you need, however: When I was shooting SASS (cowboy action) I used a pair of Blackhawks and a model 94, I loaded 240 gr bullets over 6.0 grains of Trail Boss in a regular 44 magnum case. This was very easy to shoot and more than adequate for the distances involved. Not recommended for anything but targets / gaming but they worked fine for that.

  5. #5
    Snapshot, cowboy loads would be fine. If I want to take it hunting then the 240XTP's go along. Thanks to all who replied you have given me some ideas.

  6. #6
    Hillbilly Elitist Malamute's Avatar
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    Oct 2013
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    Northern Rockies
    Not too long after I got my 4" 29 and got over the youthful enthusiasm for the full power loads, I started loading 44 spls for small game, and medium loads for most general shooting. the 44 spl load was 6 1/2 grs Unique with the Lyman 429421, then later with commercially cast 240 gr swc bullets, the medium load was 9 grs Unique with the same bullets. Its a bit more steam than the 44 spls, but quite a lot less kick and muzzle blast than the full power magnums. Only a smaller fraction of the overall loads Ive shot in 44 mags has been full power, most have been the medium load, then 44 spl somewhere between the two others for quantities.

    The medium loads are still pretty easy to shoot at 300 yards. Noticeably less sight than 44 spl level loads.

    Shoot a bunch of mild 44 spl loads and youll fall in love with your gun all over again, they are much more fun to shoot than magnums.
    Pro Biscuit

  7. #7
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    WV USA
    Unique

    Like Malamute says, it works from very mild to fairly stout in the .44. I used to take 429421 bullets loaded over 6.5gr of Unique to pistol permit classes and let students shoot them in my 629 Mountain Gun. I didn’t realize that a fellow deputies wife was in class till he came up to me a week or so later and said “You let my wife shoot a .44 MAGNUM? Now she wants one.”

  8. #8
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    When I had a 4" 629, I used about 6gr Trailboss with a 250gr SWC as my "lite" load. It was "shoot all day" light and accurate too. Unique would work as well.

    Chris

  9. #9
    Hillbilly Elitist Malamute's Avatar
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    Oct 2013
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    Northern Rockies
    FWIW, I procured a Lyman 429215 GC mould, Im reducing bullet weight for some of my stuff to keep the guns active but be easier on older sore hands. Its supposed to make 215 gr bullets, but many people have stated online they tend to run slightly heavier. Fine for what Im doing. It also reduces the depletion rate of my casting lead supply.

    Ive shot a fair number of 200 gr RNFP bullets, they are probably intended for cowboy action lever gun loads, they look somewhat like older 44-40 200 gr flat point bullets. Ive mostly shot them with the same 9 gr Unique load in mag cases as a mild 44 carbine load. Its a little muzzle blasty in pistols compared to 44 spl loads, Ive loaded some 44 spls with that bullet but not shot any in a long time and cant offer any thoughts on them in that regard.

    Lighter bullets and lighter loads help make the large caliber guns more friendly to geezerly hands and bodies as well as less expensive to shoot. The discussions of Old Man Guns often trend towards 32s and light 38 loads, but larger calibers can still be shooter friendly with the right loads, and Lost River has shown in his 44 Russian loads. Ive also found single action revolvers more hand friendly compared to DA revolvers of the same chambering. I think before I went to 32s or light loads in 38 DAs for carry guns Id more likely go 45 Colt, 44 spl, or 357 in a single action and live with the understanding that reloads were less practical.
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  10. #10
    You might need a shorter front sight for special loads.
    Likes pretty much everything in every caliber.

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