Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > >


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 04-06-2013, 06:35 PM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default Best powder for short barrel 44 Special

I just acquired a 396 Mountain Lite and with the current ammo situation, I will have to roll my own. I have a supply of Hornady 180 gr XTPs and powers that should be suitable. In the 3" barrel it seems that the faster powders would be best. The powders that I have available in that range are Bullseye, RedDot (Promo), American Select, and Universal. I'm not trying to set speed records, after all this thing is LIGHT, just looking for a load that would be close to a factory 180 gr SD load. Anyone out there have suggestions for such a load?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 04-06-2013, 06:58 PM
ronnie gore ronnie gore is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: newnan,ga
Posts: 979
Likes: 13
Liked 471 Times in 173 Posts
Default 44

i also have one of these guns, i cast a 215 grain flat nose, and a 200 grain semi wadcutter, i use w-231, and unique, use the books for the amount of powder.
as the gun says on the barrel 200 grain bullets only because of the light weight of the gun could pull the bullets of heavy load and heavy bullets.
but i just had to find out myself, so i loaded my 250 grain semiwadcutter
with a heavy crimp and had no issues with bullet pull.
i also use accurate number 2. i like the lead bullets since you most likely won't get enough speed to open up a hollow point anyway.
Attached Thumbnails
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special-100_5436-jpg   Best powder for short barrel 44 Special-100_5437-jpg   Best powder for short barrel 44 Special-100_5439-jpg  

Last edited by ronnie gore; 04-06-2013 at 07:48 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #3  
Old 04-06-2013, 06:59 PM
JC676 JC676 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Carlsbad, NM
Posts: 3
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Default

I recently acquired a little Taurus 2" in .44 Special. I ran 10 rounds of the CCI/Blazer 200 gr GDHP over my chronograph and the load average 776 fps. My first attempt to duplicate this load consisted of a 200 gr LRNFP over 7.1 gr of Accurate #5 which didn't come close, averaging just 643 fps. The 7.1 gr load of Accurate #5 was almost max so I didn't try anything further with it. During an email exchange with Accurate's ballistician, I was given Accurate's new load data that is due to be released very soon. It has a max load of #5 with the 200 gr lead bullet of 8.3 grs which is supposed to deliver 875-950 fps depending on barrel length. I imagine I should be able to get the 776 fps velocity of the Gold Dot Hollow Point somewhere in that range.

I know you don't list any Accurate powders, and all powders are tough to find right now, but if you ever get the chance I recommend giving them a try. Especially #5. It goes through my RCBS Uni-Flow powder measure like water and burns extremely clean. I'm in the process of working up a Skeeter Load with #5 (240 gr SWC at 950-1000 fps) for use in my Ruger Blackhawk and Smith 24-3. That Smith just happens to be my favorite handgun of all time. When powder becomes more readily available again I think I will replace all my current powder choices (HP38, Unique, 2400 and Bullseye) with Accurate #2, #5, #7 and #9.

Regards,
Jon
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 04-06-2013, 08:03 PM
Rule3's Avatar
Rule3 Rule3 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Florida, NRA CERT RSO
Posts: 19,396
Likes: 8,299
Liked 10,970 Times in 5,093 Posts
Default

No, slower powders will develop more velocity out of shorter barrels.

You did not mention if you have any medium or slow powders.

Unique is the the powder used in the Skeeter loads.

Plus I hate all you guys with those light weight 44 Specials.
__________________
"Turn the Page"
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 04-06-2013, 09:23 PM
BLUEDOT37's Avatar
BLUEDOT37 BLUEDOT37 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: N.E. OKLA.
Posts: 4,109
Likes: 3,260
Liked 4,252 Times in 1,803 Posts
Default

I've loaded some 44 Spcl. using Unique & Power Pistol for moderate speed rounds. Original/factory 44 Spcl. are pretty weak some I'd think you'd want to improve on that to get the most from your 180 JHPs? Never tried the powders you mentioned for it though.

FYI: Handloader #236, Handloading the 44 Spcl. - Brian Pierce had some good data in it.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #6  
Old 04-07-2013, 05:55 AM
Ivan the Butcher Ivan the Butcher is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Harlem, Ohio
Posts: 5,980
Likes: 5,397
Liked 6,764 Times in 2,775 Posts
Default

I've always used factory Silver-Tips in my older Tarus. They use a verity of ww231. I used ww231. In my 1873 carbine loads, sorry I can't help more than that
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 04-07-2013, 06:40 AM
Nframecollector Nframecollector is offline
Banned
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: South Texas
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 641
Liked 458 Times in 269 Posts
Default

I have a 44 mag. snubbie that I shoot 44 spl in. I use the 250 Keith bullet over 6 grs. of Bullseye.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 04-07-2013, 07:43 AM
zeke zeke is online now
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: NW Wi
Posts: 795
Likes: 359
Liked 415 Times in 228 Posts
Default

Win brass, Fed 150 primer, firm LFC, 3 in 696,

200 gn gold dot
8.8 grains V V - N350 = 885 fps, very good accuracy
9.0 gns V V - N350 = 926 fps, very good to ex accuracy
7.5 grains Unique = 868 fps very good accuracy

185 Hdy xtp (Rem 180 sjhp is good also)
9.0 grains unique = 1020 fps very good to ex accuracy, 8.5 grains milder practice load
9.6 grains N350 = 986 fps, decent accuracy

200 grain lead rnfp to replicate poi of 200 grain gold dot loads
6.4 grains hp 38 = 821 fps, very good accuracy
7.0 grains unique = 805 fps, good potential
5.4 grains Red Dot = 830 fps, decent
6.2 grains Green Dot = 870 fps, good potential

Older factory rounds
Blazer aluminum case factory load = 890 fps
Win silvertip factory load = 730 fps, lousy accuracy
hdy 180 xtp = couldn't find the vhrono results, but remember they were pretty light

Last edited by zeke; 04-07-2013 at 07:47 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 04-07-2013, 12:03 PM
Tex1001's Avatar
Tex1001 Tex1001 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: North Texas
Posts: 571
Likes: 714
Liked 841 Times in 253 Posts
Default

Rule 3:
I have 3 44 spls. 2 charters (3" & 4") and a 3" Rossi 431. I have Pachmyer/Uncle Mikes grips on all and they still hurt my hands, even shooting 200gr. LRNFPs. My S&W 1917 4" with Crimson Trace stocks isn't nearly as painful/whippy to shoot. I don't think that you are missing much not having a short 44.
_______________________
Boxers or briefs? At my age, Depends.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 04-07-2013, 09:45 PM
Nemo288's Avatar
Nemo288 Nemo288 is online now
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Badgerland
Posts: 1,965
Likes: 305
Liked 997 Times in 538 Posts
Default

6-7 grains of Universal (a good substitute for Unique) and bullets
from the 200 gr Gold Dot HP to a 240 cast Keith work well in my Bulldog and 624's.
Hornady lists 6-8 gr Universal for both their jacketed and lead
180 gr. bullets. Start with 6 and work up in .5 gr increments.
I have a Crimson Trace grip on the Bulldog and it seems to tame
the recoil and is more accurate & faster than the fixed sights it comes with.
I also shoot a lot of 44 Magnum so that probably helps me control the light Special.

---
Nemo
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 04-07-2013, 10:07 PM
M29since14 M29since14 is offline
SWCA Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 8,481
Likes: 3,468
Liked 4,441 Times in 2,263 Posts
Default

That 396 is a neat little gun. Somehow I missed that one. Thanks for the pictures that followed the OP. Anyway, normally I would say Unique without hesitation for .44 Special in any barrel length but if you are limited to 200-grs in that particular gun, then 231/HP-38 might be a slightly better choice.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 04-08-2013, 12:01 AM
NE450No2 NE450No2 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,095
Likes: 7
Liked 458 Times in 272 Posts
Default

I would recommend Unique.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #13  
Old 04-08-2013, 09:09 AM
moxie moxie is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,517
Likes: 292
Liked 635 Times in 344 Posts
Default

I use Unique.

Note that as far as I know there are no factory 180 gr. SD loads. The most common, and probably the best, SD load for the .44 Spl. is the Speer or Blazer 200 gr. Gold Dot Hollow Point. Next would be the Winchester 200 gr. Silvertip.

Also note that those particular bullets are probably not going to expand at the velocities you'll be able to get out of your gun. The bullet is meant for .44 Mag. speeds. You're better off with a 200 or 240 cast bullet in .430 dia.
__________________
USAF, 69-92
Vietnam, 72-73

Last edited by moxie; 04-08-2013 at 09:12 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 04-08-2013, 10:18 AM
Rule3's Avatar
Rule3 Rule3 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Florida, NRA CERT RSO
Posts: 19,396
Likes: 8,299
Liked 10,970 Times in 5,093 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tex1001 View Post
Rule 3:
I have 3 44 spls. 2 charters (3" & 4") and a 3" Rossi 431. I have Pachmyer/Uncle Mikes grips on all and they still hurt my hands, even shooting 200gr. LRNFPs. My S&W 1917 4" with Crimson Trace stocks isn't nearly as painful/whippy to shoot. I don't think that you are missing much not having a short 44.
_______________________
Boxers or briefs? At my age, Depends.
Can't be as bad as a 357 Mag out of a alloy J frame.

I have a stainless 640, 357 mag and it is brutal.
__________________
"Turn the Page"
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 04-08-2013, 11:59 AM
gboling's Avatar
gboling gboling is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: So.Cal.
Posts: 613
Likes: 204
Liked 186 Times in 111 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smith657 View Post
I just acquired a 396 Mountain Lite and with the current ammo situation, I will have to roll my own. I have a supply of Hornady 180 gr XTPs and powers that should be suitable. In the 3" barrel it seems that the faster powders would be best. The powders that I have available in that range are Bullseye, RedDot (Promo), American Select, and Universal. I'm not trying to set speed records, after all this thing is LIGHT, just looking for a load that would be close to a factory 180 gr SD load. Anyone out there have suggestions for such a load?
Hornady advertises their 180gr XTP 44 spec. ammo to develop 1000fps at the muzzle. I chronographed that ammo from my 3” ported 629 and got 795fps at 15’ from the muzzle.

Using Hornady load data I loaded the 180gr XTP on 10.4gr of AA #5. Hornady’s data indicated that they obtained 1000fps at the muzzle from this load in a 3’ Charter Arms .44 Spec. I chronographed that load from my 3” ported 629 and got 926fps at 15’ from the muzzle.

Hornady data for their 180gr HP XTP lists 5.4gr BE for 750fps, 5.6gr BE for 800fps, 6.1gr BE for 850fps and a max load of 6.5gr BE for 900fps.

I would recommend getting a copy of Hornady’s Handbook of Cartridge Reloading as too many reloading manuals is never enough. This, of course, follows my theory that too many handguns is never enough etc. etc.

Happy reloading
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #16  
Old 04-08-2013, 12:42 PM
novalty's Avatar
novalty novalty is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Southern Maine
Posts: 13,613
Likes: 486
Liked 1,845 Times in 975 Posts
Default

Right now the best powder you can fire out of a 44 Special is the one you can actually get your hands on--without refinancing your home.
Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Like Post:
  #17  
Old 04-09-2013, 07:55 AM
Mule88's Avatar
Mule88 Mule88 is offline
SWCA Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Vandalia, Ohio
Posts: 1,726
Likes: 226
Liked 209 Times in 123 Posts
Default

I use Universal clays and get excellent results, I use to use Unique for years but found this to be a better powder overall.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #18  
Old 04-09-2013, 11:23 AM
David Sinko David Sinko is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,042
Likes: 0
Liked 286 Times in 180 Posts
Default

Some of the loads I see here aren't even the equal of the .40 S&W with 180 gr. bullets!

Most .44 Special factory loads are downright feeble and any modern revolver (even a Taurus) should be able to do better. Most of us who handload can do MUCH better and still sleep well at night. A simple Special load that I use is 7.0 grs. of 231 with a 240 gr. SWC, for 950 FPS in my Mountain Gun. And it's still a serious load in my 629 snub as well.

Dave Sinko
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 04-09-2013, 11:52 AM
Rule3's Avatar
Rule3 Rule3 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Florida, NRA CERT RSO
Posts: 19,396
Likes: 8,299
Liked 10,970 Times in 5,093 Posts
Default

http://www.sixguns.com/tests/tt44spec.htm
__________________
"Turn the Page"
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Like Post:
  #20  
Old 04-10-2013, 07:23 AM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default

Wow, thanks for all the input!. Another question popped up while I was reading all of the responses and that is "bullet diameter". Hornady bullets are .430 while everyone else's jacketed bullets are .429. The .430 will not push through the cylinder throats. Should I use .429 bullets and not even try the Hornadys since I still have 2 full boxes that I can easily sell?
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 04-10-2013, 08:45 AM
M29since14 M29since14 is offline
SWCA Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 8,481
Likes: 3,468
Liked 4,441 Times in 2,263 Posts
Default

The Hornady bullets should be fine. The size of the front end of your chambers is probably more critical than the exit bores.

If you want to use the Hornadys, just use the normal precautions you would always use in working up a new load in any cartridge and gun that is new to you - viz., select a starting load from appropriate published data and work up incrementally. It would seem highly unlikely the Hornadys at .430" would cause any trouble.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 04-10-2013, 12:24 PM
BigBill's Avatar
BigBill BigBill is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: north america
Posts: 11,184
Likes: 1,434
Liked 9,884 Times in 4,123 Posts
Default

I use unique powder in all my leadcast loads and 2400 powder in all my jacketed loads. This way I get more reloads out of a pound of gun powder its like getting better milage or more shots from one pound of gun powder.
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 04-10-2013, 12:58 PM
Snapping Twig's Avatar
Snapping Twig Snapping Twig is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2007
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Posts: 3,285
Likes: 393
Liked 3,141 Times in 1,073 Posts
Default

It's true that long or short barrels, slower powders give highest velocities.

The trick, the thing I believe you're asking is, how can I make an efficient load for a lightweight, short barrel revolver.

Powder burn efficiency is increased when near to maximum loads are used. IOW, loading anything light decreases efficiency leading to unburned powder, soot, etc.

A full burn eliminates most issues.

Recognising Newton's Law of equal and opposite reactions, the faster the bullet moves, the greater the recoil.

So for your purposes, a bullet in the 800 to 900fps area is optimum.

It IS a big bullet after all.

Using a faster burning powder at an efficient loading, say W231/HP38 for example, would be ideal for your purposes.

I like a 250g SWC over 6.5g W231, but you could work up to that. I figure it to be @ 850fps from a 4" 624.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 04-13-2013, 10:41 PM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default

Snapping Twig, you probably said it best. The 800-900 fps range without a lot of unburned powder and muzzle flash is what I'm after. I just got a Hornady #9 manual today and found that the first load listed for the 180 XTP was American Select, 4.8gr/750fps to a max of 6.4gr/900fps. Their test firearm is a 3" Charter Arms revolver so my 396 should be very similar. My Hornady pistol measure throws 5.1gr with the #15 bushing and 6.0gr with the #16 so I loaded a few of each for starters. Weather permitting, I'll let you know how these work out. Thanks again for all the input.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 04-21-2013, 03:13 PM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default

I finally got a chance to shoot the 396 Mountain Lite with the 180 grain XTPs pushed by American Select. The 5.1 gr load was comfortable while 6.0 grains felt stout but very shootable for a dozen rounds or so. Accuracy seemed good, no signs of crimp failure, no signs of unburned powder, and according to the Hornady data which was also shot with a 3" revolver the velocity should be a strong 850fps. So to keep it simple, 180gr XTP over 6.0gr of American Select thrown with the #16 bushing in my Hornady pistol measure. Thanks again to everyone for their insight.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 04-21-2013, 09:13 PM
fredj338's Avatar
fredj338 fredj338 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Kalif. usa
Posts: 5,142
Likes: 1,344
Liked 2,466 Times in 1,571 Posts
Default

There are no unsuitable powders for a 3" mag. It just depends on what you are trying to achieve. You will ALWAYS get the max vel from the slowest powders, BUT, you will pay for that with a larger flash & blast. For plinkers, anything from BE thru HS6 will work fine. TOugh to beat Unique or WSF as an all around choice for a 44mag snub.
__________________
NRA Cert. Inst. IDPA CSO
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 04-21-2013, 10:53 PM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default

The 396 Mountain Lite is an 18 ounce L-frame 5 shot 44 Special, not a 44 Magnum. I'm not interested in more velocity because it would become difficult to shoot proficiently.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 04-22-2013, 04:45 AM
fredj338's Avatar
fredj338 fredj338 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Kalif. usa
Posts: 5,142
Likes: 1,344
Liked 2,466 Times in 1,571 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smith657 View Post
The 396 Mountain Lite is an 18 ounce L-frame 5 shot 44 Special, not a 44 Magnum. I'm not interested in more velocity because it would become difficult to shoot proficiently.
Then as noted, anything form BE to HS6 will work fine.
__________________
NRA Cert. Inst. IDPA CSO
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 04-22-2013, 04:30 PM
Nframecollector Nframecollector is offline
Banned
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: South Texas
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 641
Liked 458 Times in 269 Posts
Default

Why is the barrel marked max. bullet 200 gr?
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 04-23-2013, 12:49 AM
ddixie884 ddixie884 is online now
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Avery,Tx
Posts: 1,235
Likes: 788
Liked 430 Times in 254 Posts
Default

It is supposed that heavier projectiles will jump crimp in your very light revolver. I think it is recommended only jacketed bullets, as well........
__________________
dd884
JMHO-YMMV
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 04-23-2013, 11:54 AM
Treeman Treeman is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Colorado
Posts: 389
Likes: 5
Liked 53 Times in 39 Posts
Default

Lots of good choices. More than one person has concluded that 231 is "the powder" for .44 spl. Personally I have always been pleased with Red Dot for loads in my Charter and .44spl plinkers in my .44 mags.
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 05-03-2013, 07:43 AM
Smith657 Smith657 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 56
Likes: 4
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Default

Nframecollector, mine doesn't have the bullet weight statement on the barrel. From the pictures that I've seen, only the pre-lock 396 has it but not he 396-1. The manual addresses the issue in general about all the reduced weight revolvers by advising that you should check your ammo before placing the gun in service by firing a cylinder full minus the last round and check it to make sure the crimp has held. If it didn't, change to a different load.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 05-28-2018, 01:46 PM
AirAssault411 AirAssault411 is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 2
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 2 Posts
Default Charter Arms Bulldog Actual sourced information

There seems to be a lot of opinion and disinformation regarding the Charter Arms Bulldog, it also appears that a great deal of that information is from heresay or inuendo by people that may have never owned a Bulldog or had a 1970’s model way back when. The following information is from ACTUAL reliable sources, the real experts on the topic.
I spoke with Charter’s Engineer;
The Charter Arms engineering department has stated “the most recently re-designed Bulldog is much tougher than previous models” and “with the new machining processes we have now, the tolerances are much tighter than the original design allowed for” also stated “we took one (a 44 Bulldog) right off the line as a test gun for the lab and basically tried to break it, it’s been holding up very well”.
I have had numerous conversations via email with Tim Sundles, owner of Buffalo Bore Ammunition and Wayne Brown also from Buffalo Bore. Tim Sundles has stated the following regarding the use of their .44 Special “heavy” ammunition in a Charter Arms Bulldog: “There are so many older and low quality Bulldogs floating around out there that were made over 30-40 years ago, that we blanket state not to use the ammo in Bulldogs, but honestly, the modern Bulldog is well built and capable of shooting any of our 44 SPL loads safely.” Buffalo Bore uses non-canister propellants to achieve the velocity and performance they Are known for. With regard to being over-pressure Tim has stated the following: “All of our 44 spl loads are operating around 15,000 to 16,000 CUP, MAP.” Wayne Brown Of B.B. has stated the following “Felt Recoil is very subjective, With that said, the 255 grain will deliver about 14% more recoil (versus the 190 B.B’s in was using) will you feel that? … Probably but that is a hard one for us to call”. In summary; a Bulldog will digest anything Buffalo Bore has to offer in the .44 Special caliber but you are going to feel it, how much recoil an individual is willing to tolerate is entirely subjective and a personal choice for the shooter.
On the subject of handloads; Brian Pearce had written an article for Handloader Magazine, #236, August-September 2005. In that artical he breaks down the handloads by category: (categories 1,2 and 3) with category 1 being strictly a SAAMI specification load (15500 psi or less) category 2 being 22,000 psi or less and category 3 being 25,000 psi or less. He categorizes which revolvers can handle what pressure and offers the following information: “The second category (22,000 psi) includes the Colt Single Action Army, New Frontier SAA, Charter Arms Bull Dog and United States Firearms SAA-pattern revolvers that are U.S. manufactured.” He expands on this by stating, “The Charter Arms Bulldog has proven strong enough to handle these loads, but to prevent premature loosening, they should be used somewhat sparingly. There are 3 detailed loading charts for each category which you can use to get you where you want to be load-wise. Obviously anything that will handle category 3 will handle anything less and a 44 magnum of any make will handle any .44 Special load.
Hopefully this information will assist Bulldog owners to get want theyre looking for from their firearm. This response was for information purposes only and not an advisement to overload your Bulldog and hurt your hand. Be safe, be smart, shoot only what is comfortable for YOU. Don’t go crazy with the powder just because....
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #34  
Old 05-31-2018, 01:45 PM
Bill Lear Bill Lear is offline
Member
Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special Best powder for short barrel 44 Special  
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 70
Likes: 24
Liked 45 Times in 22 Posts
Default

A few years back I built the following loads for my Charter Arms Bulldog:

4.5 grains of 700-X under a Matt's 250 grain cast hollowpoint (designed to expand at slow speeds). This recorded 693 fps average for 267 fpe.

A more potent load was 9.5 grains of Blue Dot under the same Matt's 250 grain cast HP for an average of 799 fps for 354 fpe (.45 Auto power). And yes, those BD loads are "hot" but would be my carry choice for SD or animal carry.

I know what the Charter is "rated" to handle, and for general range plinking I'd stay with a much lighter slug in the 160-180 grain range pushed around 700 fps.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 06-01-2018, 01:25 AM
Forrest r Forrest r is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,064
Likes: 19
Liked 921 Times in 412 Posts
Default

Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Speer 38 special 135 gr Short Barrel +P flintsghost Ammo 34 03-15-2016 02:31 PM
Best Powder for Short Barrel .44mag nipperdog Reloading 29 06-08-2015 07:31 AM
135 Grain Short Barrel Speer Gold Dot 38 Special S&W2244 Ammo 2 10-22-2014 11:04 PM
Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel .38 Special 135gr. 50rds For $27.95 Nick B Ammo 4 04-27-2012 07:03 AM
Speer short barrel 38 special + p ? yugolovr Ammo 4 09-15-2009 06:21 PM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
smith-wessonforum.com tested by Norton Internet Security smith-wessonforum.com tested by McAfee Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:57 PM.


Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO v2.0.42 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
© S-W Forum, LLC 2000-2018
Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)