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Old 01-14-2013, 12:48   #51
countrygun
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H110 / 296 has a really narrow window it operates well in... that being full power magnum loads. I've heard it described here as a "dragster" powder - throttle is open or it's closed, nothing in between. Normally, start data for H110 is about 1 grain off from max. Not much room to work IMHO. I tend to give up 50-100 or so fps off the top end in magnums using 2400, but I get a lot more flexibility.

Anyway, back to .44 special - you'll have a hard time finding something that performs as well as Unique, particularly with cast loads.
I feel the same about H110/296. To me it is about as close to a "controlled explosion" as you can get. I refer to it as a "one trick pony" it does one thing-operate at maximum. I keep a container around just to see if it gives better accuracy in a heavy hunting load in a given gun/bullet combination, than my more "progressive powders".
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Old 01-14-2013, 15:44   #52
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Zombie Steve & Countrygun,

Thanks!!
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Old 01-14-2013, 22:44   #53
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Just a casual reader of this thread but if you had to pick between the .44 Special and .357 Magnum which one would it be for overall range and effectiveness when considering multiple scenarios?
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Old 01-14-2013, 23:14   #54
Tiro Fijo
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Just a casual reader of this thread but if you had to pick between the .44 Special and .357 Magnum which one would it be for overall range and effectiveness when considering multiple scenarios?

Loaded question. It depends on whether one is a reloader. Both are highly reloadable in a cornucopia of power factors. The .44 Special really comes into its own in a Ruger SA, IMO. The N frames are just too big for anything less than a full house magnum, IMO.

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Old 01-14-2013, 23:30   #55
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Loaded question. It depends on whether one is a reloader. Both are highly reloadable in a cornucopia of power factors. The .44 Special really comes into its own in a Ruger SA, IMO. The N frames are just too big for anything less than a full house magnum, IMO.
Sorry for the confusion but my question doesn't pertain to reloading but only to overall range and effectiveness in multiple scenarios.

Pick which caliber you'd want to have as the sole choice.
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Old 01-15-2013, 00:22   #56
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Sorry for the confusion but my question doesn't pertain to reloading but only to overall range and effectiveness in multiple scenarios.

Pick which caliber you'd want to have as the sole choice.

It's an apples to airplanes comparison. The .44 Special is loaded weak intentionally by factories as there are many old handguns extant.

What scenario? Shooting bad guys? Hunting buffalo? Your question is too broad. However, if you don't reload you'll go broke shooting factory .44 Special. I have both calibers and reload.
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Old 01-15-2013, 12:18   #57
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It's an apples to airplanes comparison. The .44 Special is loaded weak intentionally by factories as there are many old handguns extant.

What scenario? Shooting bad guys? Hunting buffalo? Your question is too broad. However, if you don't reload you'll go broke shooting factory .44 Special. I have both calibers and reload.
Of course it's a broad question, and I made that clear at the outset. If you could only have a .357 Magnum or a .44 Special revolver which one would you choose?
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Old 01-15-2013, 12:22   #58
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The selection of available ammo would make my choice 357. I even know the pistol if I just had one

Caliber Corner

Luckily I did not have to choose just one.

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Old 01-15-2013, 12:24   #59
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However, if you don't reload you'll go broke shooting factory .44 Special. I have both calibers and reload.
You are not kidding!

I have been gifted by a generous soul with all the .357/.38 stuff I will need, so I'll start with that. However, .44spl/mag are not far behind. Powder seems to be the hardest thing to find right now. I was lucky enough to find the 1lb. of Accurate No 9. hmmmm.... anything like Magic Hat's No. 9? This one shall NOT mix the two, of course.
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Old 01-15-2013, 12:30   #60
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I would go with the .44 special all day long. even in an "N" frame. My general .44 mag handload is much closer to what Elmer Keith wanted that the marketing coup Remington and S&W delivered.

In reality, a 240-250 gn .44 (.429) bullet @ 1,200 fps will accomplish as much as a 158 gn or 125 gn .357 diameter bullet pushed to it's max. I find no need to push a magnum to knockdown anything I can hit with a handgun. If I needed "more"in handgun that my 1,200 fps I'd put a heavier bullet in
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Old 01-15-2013, 13:01   #61
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To give it some perspective, Elmer Keith left off with the .44 special at 20 grains of 2400 with his 250 grain lswc. Lyman 49 lists 3 different lead bullets from 240 - 245 grains, with a max of 13.2 grains to stay under 14,000 CUP.

I currently load 20 grains of 2400 and a 245 grain lswc in .44 magnum.

So if you ask which would I rather have - .44 special or .357 mag and reloading doesn't come into play, I'd pick the .357 mag (as Tiro said, they are kept at low levels for older guns with weaker frames). If I can reload, .44 special.
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Old 01-15-2013, 15:15   #62
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Very true. I used to shoot my 44mags a lot, like 100rds of full power ammo a week. Enough to mess up the forcing cone in my first RSBH ashooting jacketed. Now I shoot maybe 50rds a month, mostly midrange stuff, all lead. I enjoy the M29 in any flavor but really like the 4" guns. If I could only have one handgun, it would be a 4" M29. Mild to wild, mice to moose, concealable & with good 250grLSWCHP @ 925fps, a definitive man stopper.
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Fred, Where did you get your bullets?
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Old 01-15-2013, 19:35   #63
Tiro Fijo
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To give it some perspective, Elmer Keith left off with the .44 special at 20 grains of 2400 with his 250 grain lswc...

18.5 gr. in ballon head cases, 17.5 in modern cases were his loads in .44 Special.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:40   #64
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Fred, Where did you get your bullets?
Nice expansion in your pic.
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