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Old 01-28-2011, 10:48 PM
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Default Which is better for .44 mag? 2400 or H110

Any thoughts on which powder is better (pros / cons / preferences / experiences) of 2400 or H110 for .44 Mag ?

I load 180, 200 and 240 grain bullets in .44 Mag for my SW 629 with 6" barrel. I just started loading H110, after being very comfortable with Unique.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:08 PM
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I've mostly used W296 in 44.

But 2400 is my next choice.

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Old 01-28-2011, 11:08 PM
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I do not think one is "better" than the other. I have both but prefer 2400 due to the fact that it can be downloaded more than H110 and it does not require a magnum primer.
There is not much range in load variation with H110 but for those loads that absolutely have to get there quickly, it is a great powder.
Occam's Razor
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:16 PM
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Neither is "better", they have different uses. H110 is for full house loads and maximum velocity. 2400 is for mid to upper range loads and gives top accuracy in my guns.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by OCD1 View Post
I do not think one is "better" than the other. I have both but prefer 2400 due to the fact that it can be downloaded more than H110 and it does not require a magnum primer.
There is not much range in load variation with H110 but for those loads that absolutely have to get there quickly, it is a great powder.
That is it, exactly.

H110/296 needs to be loaded at or very near the top or strange things some time happen. 2400's worst problem if downloaded a little too much is some unburned powder left in the barrel and maybe some sooty cases to boot. In top loads, both are actually fine and benefit from a longer barrel.

I am just using up the last of the small amount of H110 I have had for a while and plan on sticking with 2400 from now on; I like to simplify the powder situation as much as possible.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:37 PM
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I like them both, and wouldn't want to be without either. You asked though, specifically about which is best in .44 magnum.

I own quite a few ,44 magnums and have owned a boatload more. I also own a darn good chronograph that I have had since about 1988, and I had a cheaper one before that. In my experience with all of the .44's that I have owned and chronoe'd, 2400 has always given higher velocity with recommended top end loads than H-110/296 with bullets that weight up to 240 grains. With 300 grainer's and up, H-110/296 provides the highest velocities.

At first that was a hard pill for me to swallow, since I had burned up hundreds of pounds of H-110/296 to get what the books were all saying was the top velocity obtainable, before finally trying 2400 in the late '80s.

I like the fact that 2400 doesn't require a magnum primer to burn completely ( Alliant doesn't recomend them for it either), and I haven't experienced any noticable variation in load uniformity/SD's or anything else with standard primers, though I know some have found magnum primers work best for them. I won't argue with their results, since all guns are different. It takes a couple less grains of 2400 to do the same thing as H-110, but it'd take quite a few rounds downrange to see the savings.

Either powder drops easily, and accurately from my old Pacific powder measure.

There's a touch of nostalgia, and a connection to history when using 2400 in a .44 magnum that appeals to me too.

In the end, you can't go wrong with either in the .357, .41, .44, .45 Colt, and a few others too like the .45 AR, and .38/44 HV rounds.
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:44 PM
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H110 is formulated for maximum loads. You will not find much of a 'range' of loads for a given bullet weight for H110.

2400 gives you more 'latitude' for loads that are almost as powerful as you can get with H110, but also say 75% of a max load as well.

I use Unique for 99% of my reloading, including 44 magnum.

I don't hunt, so i don't 'need' maximum loads.

I load a few 'hotter' loads mainly for fun.Like a box of 50 would last more than a year for me.

For this I like to use Blue Dot: it uses less powder than 2400, and burns cleaner, too.

I have always noticed that loads with 2400 leave a LOT of unburned granules when you eject the empties. Once enough got behind the ejector on my 629 that it wouldn't seat properly. And this was after only a few cylinders of loads...maybe 18 rounds.

With Blue Dot, you can approach 'maximum' loads, but it burns a bit too fast for really 'heavy' loads.

If you need and want the most from a 44 magnum load, then H110 is what you want to use...and with relatively heavy bullets, too.

You get more energy at the muzzle, and downrange from 240gr to 300gr. bullets.

I use 250 grain hard cast Keith type lead semiwadcutters.

My usual 'target' load is only 7.0gr Unique. That's a very light, but very accurate load for me, at moderate distances, and very easy on my 44 revolvers. Leading is absent to minimal.
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:58 AM
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I wouldn't have anything to add, except that I've read a couple times this week about 2400 leaving unburnt powder grains behind. It makes me wonder whether this is due to shooting heavy powder charges behind a 240-250gr bullet, as opposed to loading 2400 behind a 300-310gr bullet as I have done for over a decade, now. I run my 300+ grainers at 1265-1279 fps in both the 44 magnum and 45 long colt (I just love putting the "long" in there) and have never seen unburnt powder grains anywhere, or ever had a hint of a problem. I've ripped the center out of so many targets with this stuff I don't even bother to save them, anymore.

I have some H110 but don't bother to use it, as the 2400 works flawlessly.

As for H110 v. 2400, what they all said.

BTW, the 45 loads anymore are through a 7 1/2" Redhawk- I can't get a Smith 25 to stay healthy against the beating.

Last edited by 1x2; 01-29-2011 at 02:05 AM.
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Old 01-29-2011, 04:56 AM
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In my opinion, along with that and $5 you can get a nice cup of coffee from Starbucks, H110/W296 performs better in my guns. That being said, I am shooting only jacketed bullets from carbines with it. A Hornady 240gr XTP with a maximum load of H110/W296 from those 20" barrels is giving me around 1850fps. 2400, not so much, 1600fps ish.

Saying all of that, here is something else, I just bought another can of 2400!

Both have their purposes. Some claim the ball powder causes more top strap erosion than a flake powder. I'm not sure that 2400 is a "flamey" as H110/W296, you know, fireballish or whatever.

I use H110/W296 in the 45Colt too and have had great results with those "Ruger Only" loads, from a Puma carbine as well.

I am one of those that uses magnum primers with 2400. My chronograph tells me it gives better consistency from my guns. In magnum primers, I am saying either Winchester Large Pistol designed for standard and magnum loads or Wolfe Large Pistol Magnum primers. Both give the same performance, exactly. Federal and Wolfe standard primers give the same numerical results too. FWIW

The "coolness" factor of 2400 is there too. I mean, you will be loading with the "Greats" at that point! Elmer, Skelton, Sharpe and on and on you could go. Of course, like Bullseye and Unique, there wasn't much other choices back then!
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Old 01-29-2011, 12:40 PM
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Both H110 and 2400 will yield full power .44 Magnum loads and top velocities. If both propellants are loaded to maximum listed charge weights, H110 will run off and hide from 2400 and will do it with less APPARENT pressures in my 8 3/8-inch Model 29. Even with a slight reduction off of the maximum published loads H110 will still yield higher velocities than 2400 can achieve and do it with great accuracy.

Years ago I worked a long time on the .44 Magnum using several different propellants in load data published in the 1978 edition of the Sierra Manual. The maximum loads, as published in that guide, were worked up in the Model 29 using both the Sierra 240 grain bullet and their 180 grain bullet.

240 Grain Sierra Jacketed Hollow Point

Max*/H110: MV 1542 ME 1267 ES 25
Max/W296: MV 1510 ME 1215 ES 49
Max/Bluedot: MV 1461 ME 1135 ES 28
Max/AL8: MV 1430 ME 1090 ES 30
Max/2400: MV 1419 ME 1075 ES 71
Max/Unique MV 1246 ME 841 ES 32
Max/IMR4227 MV 1238 ME 817 ES 18

My personal favorite load turned out to be:
Max less 1.7grains/H110: MV 1478 ME 1168 ES 38

180 grain Sierra Jacketed Hollow Point

Max/H110: MV 1814 ME 1316 ES 62
Max less 2.3 grains/H110 MV 1757 ME 1049 ES 40
Max/W296 MV 1766 ME 1247 ES 49
Max/BlueDot MV 1762 ME 1241 ES 33
Max/AL8 MV 1694 ME 1147 ES 54
Max/2400 MV 1620 ME 1049 ES 81
Max/Unique MV 1548 ME 946 ES 37

All loads fired over a Oehler Model 12 chronograph from a Smith & Wesson Model 29 with 8 3/8-inch barrel.

*Max means the maximum listed load as published in the 1978 edition of the Sierra Loading Manual.

All loads used Remington cases and Remington 2 1/2 primers.

The later Sierra manuals maximum loads will show to be less than some of the ones published in their 1978 manual.

Work 'em up at your own discretion.
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:16 PM
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I certainly cant say which is BETTER than the other(s)...but Im going with 2400 to do my loads in .44Mag. One of the main reasons and I lean this way with all of Allient ( now) powders is the gap between starting loads and MAX loads. This kind of alludes to a different thread that gives RCBS powder measures holy heck. (RCBS Uniflow)

Example. For a 240 gr lead slug in 44...the max load ( from data sources ) is 20.6 gr which would give me 1510 FPS. STARTING charge is 18.5 gr. Thats a LOT of leeway to get just what feels good to me...and would allow the slug I was using to perform properly. Lots of powders dont have that much.
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Old 01-29-2011, 04:01 PM
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I prefer 2400 also. However I got rid of my slight unburnt powder problems by applying a slightly tighter crimp. 2400 needs a good heavy crimp to burn thoroughly and cleanly. IMO. And 2400 down loads very nice for me in my 329PD. Tom.
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:06 PM
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2400 and a hard cast keith now your shooting lol
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Old 01-29-2011, 07:52 PM
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With jacketed bullets in my .44mags, I've never been able to obtain the velocities with 2400 that I do with H110/W296, nor are the 2400 loads as accurate as the H110/W296 loads. Actually in .44mag, I prefer IMR4227 over 2400. This is my experience with my guns.
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:32 AM
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I've used both. H-110 gives a little higher velocity, but I find myself using 2400 most with cast bullets. Here are some things I found from a practical standpoint:
- H-110 leaks in my Lee Pro Auto Disk powder measure. Not enough to create errors in charge weight, but enough to make a mess. 2400 does not leak.
- H-110 seems cleaner burning, whereas even at max load with 2400 I get some crusty black flakes.
- H-110 needs a magnum primer for best consistency and complete burn. 2400 does not.
- H-110 works best for full-tilt loads, whereas you can download 2400 if you want (although I don't, I have other powders for downloaded .44)

I get great accuracy from 20.6 grains of 2400 and a 240 or 250 grain cast lead SWC. This 5-shot group was shot at 25 yards, and the top hole is the first shot, the remaining four are below after I adjusted the elevation on the scope to get in the bull.
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Old 01-31-2011, 01:07 PM
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I prefer 296/110. 2400 was never clean burning enough.
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Old 01-31-2011, 04:19 PM
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2400 has always worked for me
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Old 02-03-2011, 12:29 PM
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All I ever use in my .44's are H110 for max and Universal Clays for midrange. Used about evrything else out there the last 35 yrs and these 2 perform the best for me.
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Old 02-04-2011, 10:26 AM
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don't know about H110,but 2400 always seemed to have unburnt powder in 44Mag & 357Mag,didn't matter if it was medium or maximum charges. Have since converted over to SR4756 and everythings been clean. I use SR4756 for 9mm,38Sp,357Mag,40S&W,10mm,44Mag. Light plinking/target loads in 38Sp I use SR7625.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:32 AM
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The one and only .44 Magnum load I use is Elmer Keith's old load of 22.0 grs. of 2400 with a 250ish gr. hard cast SWC. I never loaded this cartridge until recently and don't have any molds for any bullets so I bought a box of open Laser Cast 240 gr. SWC from the Bargain Cave at Cabela's. I decided that since this load was good enough for Elmer, it should should be good enough for me and my 629-2 Mountain Lion. Well, accuracy is outstanding. Despite the severe recoil in the light gun, I can hit better with this gun and load under field conditions than with any of my other revolvers, as far as heavy hunting loads are concerned. And I am not getting any of the unburned powder that others seem to have.

I have done a lot of handloading of heavy .45 Colt and my experience has taught me that 2400 is the better powder for bullets that weigh less than about 300 grs. I always saved 296 or H110 for the very heavy bullets at high velocity, and I see no reason to change this policy when loading .44 Magnum.

Dave Sinko
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:24 AM
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I like W296. I shoot 23.5 grains under a 240gr.XTP out of my Ruger Super Redhawk with 9 1/2 barrel for whitetails here in Missouri. I do not use a magnum primer just WLP primers and have never had a problem even in cold weather. Excellent accuracy and the big bucks don't go far when I put it in the boiler room.
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Old 02-06-2011, 11:47 AM
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I started off using the 296 powder and switched to the 2400 powder because i use less powder in my magnum loads. One pound of powder goes farther. I use 2400 for my jacketed magnum loads and unique powder for my leadcast loads.

The winchester WLP primers can be used in the magnum and standard loads. I do believe there a tad hotter over standard primers. I don't use these primers when an empty case/light powder charge is used. I just use caution. Bill
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Old 02-08-2011, 12:50 PM
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2400 is available to me locally and there is tons of data available.

Availability was a big factor when I started out. I'm comfortable loading with it now & see no reason to change.
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