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Discussion in 'Caliber Corner' started by dp2002813, Jan 8, 2013.
What reloading machine do you have? I have a Dillion 550B.
I have in my collection a brace of S&W mod. 24s with 3 in barrels, one mod. 24 in a four in barrel. My main hunting load(for hogs) is a 250 gr hardcast over 8.5 gr of unique with a large non- magnum pistol primer...great penetration!
Indeed - the .44 Special doesn't have to expand - it is already at .43 caliber.
If you're loading your own, this is definitely the way to go.
A section of the market that I think a lot of ammo manufacturers miss is the low to mid-range .44 mag, roughly what fred is describing here. My fun load isn't a hp, but a normal cast 240 grain semi-wadcutter going about 950 fps from a 4" barrel. Roughly on par with a standard pressure .45 Colt. Fun to shoot, and I'm really not worried about the horsepower if it came down to it.
Although Elmer Keith showed us just how crazy you can get with a .44 special, he also broke a bunch of guns.
Easy to load the magnums down, and the upper end is there if you want it (I get the same cast boolit over 1,250 fps without trying too hard by using slower burning powders).
Yeah Elmer Keith!
Yeah Uncle Elmer!!!
A legend for sure!
XL 650. IF, I get the dies, I will get an entire tool head (that would be #6 ).
I actually just got back from the range. Needed to sight in the model 29. Did the sight in with factory .44 magnums. I have only one box of .44 special (marked $14.99, so I wonder how long that's been lying around). I decided to try 12 rounds of the special, it felt like it didn't even go off after the magnums!
Even with the light load, I didn't find the gun as nice shooting as my 586.
Dillon 650 - that is a serious machine.
Got it in 1996.
If I only owned one gun & it was a 44mag, I would reload for it. Cost of 44mag ammo is outragious & you are pretty much stuck w/ full power ammo. Not needed for punching paper & hard on guns. You also don't need an expensive progressive to effectively feed a 44mag. Loading 100rds a week is easily/cheaply done on a ss press or turret. Few will shoot more than 100rds a week in 44mag, even reduced loads. With lead bullets, you are shooting 44mags for about $6/box of 50. There is nothing a jacketed bullet brings to the party w/ the 44mag, lead bullets rule in big bores.
"If I only had one gun..." I am coming around to that idea. I am very nostalgic for .357, but the .44spl/mag is just so much fun and versatile! The only difficulty I have is concealing a N frame. Winter ok, but summer?
But, can you really reload in an apartment? I have all the equipment, except the dyes, cases and powder. Is it wise to reload in an apartment setting? Anyone?
Since I already own an XL650, I can't see using a single stage press at this point (even though I have one).
I did. I lived in an apartment for 3 years. I had an old coffee table in the back of the living room, that was pretty robust. During everyday life, the coffee table was covered with a nice table cloth. When I needed to reload, the cover came off and a RCBS Rock Chucker attached to it with some bolts and wing nuts (the press and supplies were stored on the shelves under the table). It's doable if you're creative.
I have reloaded in every apt I lived in. You don't need much room. I set up in a 24x36 coat closet in college. Built a bench & shelves in it & put a lock on the door. You can do quite well w/ a folding workmate & clamp the press to it. Powder & primers are safer than cleaning fluids.
I load on a 550 & 650, but still use my ss press a lot. If I want to put together 50rds of 44mag, I don't tear down my 550 for that, just use the ss press. My point was if it was the only gun I had, it would be worth buiying a ss kit to reload for it. Factory 44mags are quite expensive. Most 44mag shooters don't shoot them more than 100rds a week. You do NOT need a progressive for that volume.
tagged for info, considering as next purchase
My first press was the Rockchucker! owned a couple proggressives since then, but they are a pain in the but! efficient yes, but I don't shoot any one caliber enough. Now I only have the Rockchucker. Started in a 1 bed Apt. I modified the Coffe table in the living room then too, reinforced underneath with a 2x4, Slid my supplies under the couch. Simply tossed a table cloth over when press removed. Wife not too thrilled, until I got her a Kitten! The ROCKCHUCKER is one hell of a press! Get your system/procedure going, and its plenty fast enough. I know of no other press as strong, reliable, easy to use, and capable of producing the finest, most accurate ammunition. I don't have that wife anymore, but i still have that RCBS press, and the Cat!
For almost 50 years I have been shooting the big bores.... Although the 44mag in a 3"/4" is the best choice, The 44special works fine if you reload. I kill elk with the 4 5/8" Ruger Vaquero in 44special. I can load a 300gr bullet in the 44sp, and have all the penetration I need. I EDC "when in a town" a 45acp M1911. The 44sp will out do it properly loaded.
I have shot tens of thosands of rounds and that is a real low figure through 44mag/special and 45LC/ 357mag, for half a century.
I am NOT one bit concerned about the effectiveness of the 44sp. Factory loads stink. Hand loads are where you will get the horse power you need/want.
We do a very great deal of real loooooong range shooting on the ranch here, out to 600 yds. The 44special holds its own with about anything else, "again," prpoperly loaded.
If I can take elk with it, I can sure put a man down with it !
Got no jumping off place here, and don't post much on GT any more, but this caught my eye. I just say from almost 50 years "experience", the 44special is a really great round capable of taking men and very large game "loaded properly."
Don't be afraid of it !
Good shooting and stay safe.
Had to make this real quick.
If you're going to get into 44spcl., the CCI Blazer Aluminum 200 gr. GD's are the best deal going in commercial ammo. You need to reload much more so than with, say 10mm.
696's cost an easy grand. 396's cost an easy grand. I had a CA Bulldog and if I had kept shooting it, it would have exploded. I guess not a shoot a lot type of thing anyway. I like to shoot and carry my guns. If you want to buy a box of ammo, see where the sights need to be aligned at a few distances, the Bulldog will be the easiest to carry.
Hey CM, good to see you around Bub! Take care - GB