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Old 04-16-2017, 10:06 PM
Elksticker Elksticker is offline
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Default Inconsistant Velocity with lite 44 loads

I have been looking to come up with a light load to shoot in my 629 MG. After reading through past threads I loaded some 240 gr. RN cast bullets with 7, 7.5, and 8 grains of HP 38. I noticed some pretty good variations in velocity, and remembered something I saw in a thread and alternated shooting after tipping the muzzle down then muzzle up. The differences were around 80, 50, and 40 fps. They were fun to shoot but I'm wondering is there a powder that would be more consistent in small quantities in that big a case? Or is that even enough to worry about? My field testing is on hold for a few weeks due to shoulder surgery, so any help for this bored guy would be appreciated.
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Old 04-16-2017, 10:20 PM
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1) is this repeated consistent variation noted with use of a chrony?
2) with different loads of .5 grains I would expect some variations;
3) are these variation reproducible at will?

Personally I don't believe that small change has all that big an effect on typical range target distances.
Also in the past, it seemed I had more variation with the lighter charges as well.

One of the most consistent recipes I've found, was with Trail Boss, which also gives a more gentle 'poooosh' for recoil.

IIRC, those charges are pretty low in the ballistic chart. It's been a while since I've ran that recipe combination so can't compare with my own results.

It may do your recovery better by going to smaller calibers for the duration. I've had to recover from dislocated shoulder enough to recognize just how pleasant taking a 'stick with 22s-for-a-while vacation' can be.
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Old 04-16-2017, 10:42 PM
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Titegroup should give a smaller deviation than HP38, and Trail Boss (being bulky) certainly will.
But as m657 notes, you probably won't see all that much difference on target paper at usual pistol target distances, like 25 yds.
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Old 04-16-2017, 11:08 PM
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Thanks for the replies. Yes those are with a chrony, ten round strings. The roughly 80, 50 and forty fps differences were with 7.0, 7.5 and 8.0gr respectively. Averages were 909, 954 and 1004 fps
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Old 04-16-2017, 11:21 PM
Drm50 Drm50 is offline
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I've been shooting 240SWC cast/ 8.0 Unique for years. Very good
target load at 25yds. If outside of your casings are dirty you
will have to crank up powder charge. My buddy has a Taurus that
won't do squat with my loads. Based on individual gun you have
to have enough charge to seal case to chambers or you will get
ragged groups. I put onion skin disc over powder.
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Old 04-16-2017, 11:49 PM
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Default I second....

I second target powders with light loads. Though I'm surprised that wonderful HP-38 powder doesn't quite to the job here, some Titegroup or Bullseye will surely even things out some. Just be extra careful of double charging..... bad juju.
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:02 AM
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I have used 6 to 6.5 grains of Red Dot under a 240 gr cast bullet in my 44 mags for years. I have not checked the shot to shot variation with this load, but it has been uniformly accurate in most any .44 I have used it in. About 875 to 950 fps. depending on the load and gun.

Larry
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Old 04-17-2017, 06:11 AM
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Those variations are pretty much what I would expect from light loadings, especially if you didn't do any out-of-the-ordinary prep work (sorting bullets, verifying each individual charge, sorting brass, etc).

They will also not make any great difference in accuracy, certainly at 25 yards, perhaps even at 50. A long time ago, when chronos first came out, Bullseye shooters realized that the light, super-accurate target loads they were using in .45 ACP, .32 LC, and .38 Spl didn't really produce consistent velocities--despite the fact that they printed excellent groups at 50 yards.
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Old 04-17-2017, 06:34 AM
Forrest r Forrest r is offline
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I have yet to see anything outperform clays for light 44mag loads. 6.0gr to 7.0gr of clays, depending on the bullet (180gr to 240gr) will have low sd's/excellent accuracy.

The 44mag case is a different animal than a lot of other calibers. Case volume is everything & a powder that works extremely well in a 38spl or 9mm case may struggle in the 44mag/light load.

As others have recommended, high energy powders do better in light loads.

Well there's the 2 things to look for case capacity and high energy. Some common powers that have already been mentioned in this thread. Using hp-38 as the standard for case volume, the different powders and their case volume compared to hp-38:

hp-38 ='s 100%
titegroup ='s 90%
bullseye ='s 112%
american select ='s 138%
clays ='s 150%
trailboss ='s 225%

Of the powders listed above titegroup, bullseye & clays are high energy powders.
Of the high energy powders clays takes up the most case volume.

HP-38 is a good powder but it's a little too slow burning for me ( a couple powders faster than unique). It's not a high energy powder nor is it a high volume powder. Not knocking hp-38 I just tend to use these powders for light/target/plinking loads.
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Old 04-17-2017, 07:16 AM
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That muzzle up, muzzle down post may have been one of my posts. In my case it was a warning concerning IMR SR7625, a wonderful powder in semi auto calibers but VERY position sensitive in a revolver case. In my case I was posting about my results loading 38 special with SR7625 and there was a 300 foot per second variation due to the pre-shot muzzle position. BTW, I now load 38 special with Vihtavouri 3N37 and it's proven to be an excellent choice, no position sensitivity problems and it's an excellent shooting powder for 38 special and 147 grain 9mm loads.

Concerning your variation of up to 80 fps, my only concern with that level of variation would be it's effect on accuracy. One suggestion would be to try a heavier charge weight because Pressure can effect the efficiency of the burn with certain powders. Quite simply if the charge is too light you see a larger variation in velocity, something you did not note in your post but you may find this held true in your tests. If so you already have a solution. BTW, I do NOT view a variation of only 25 fps as significant, however I am not capable of what I've seen some really good bullseye shooters do at 50 yards I'm just happy to just hit the target at that distance.
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:26 PM
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A little filler over the powder before seating the bullet can sometimes make it more consistent. With a Light load the small amount of powder can move around inside the case and the position can be a contributor to this inconsistency. By pushing it back against the primer with a filler all loads will have the same powder position.
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:40 PM
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H what do you suggest for a filler and how do you add it?
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:43 PM
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If you want to spring for it, Vih't Tin Cup has worked well me in 44 spl loads. I use it to push a 250 RNFP cast bullet. Bulk powder fills the case. On a sunny day, I swear you can almost see it going down range.
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:49 PM
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Dang, I love this place. It sounds like for my purposes a bit of variation doesn't matter all that much, and now there are several powders on my radar I hadn't considered before. That 7.5 hp38 load felt pretty good and I may come back to it, but not before I try a few others. Thanks for your input.
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:56 PM
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I use cotton filler for large, or long cases. With titegroup my deviation is usually less than 25 fps. You only need enough cotton to keep the powder close to the primer.
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Old 04-17-2017, 01:15 PM
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Trail Boss is bulky and developed just for light loads in large cases. It fills most of the case .
Red Dot is supposed to be not position sensitive. My answer is to tilt the gun up before each shot placing the powder to the rear each time.
I don't care for case fillers , such as tufts of Dacron fiber , on top of the powder charge...so I just tilt up .
Gary
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Old 04-17-2017, 01:19 PM
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I have had the same experience sub 8 grains with 231/hp38. 8.5 seemed to produce more consistancy.

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Old 04-17-2017, 01:36 PM
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You could be experiencing an inconsistent burn. Maybe experiment for better consistency by enlarging the flash holes to .094" and using mag primers.
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Old 04-17-2017, 01:39 PM
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I only load 44spl,no mags, and 4.5gr of Trail Boss under a 240gr hard cast .430" bullet in Starline cases with a S&B LP primer at OAL of 1.460" works well for me in 3" and 4" guns.I apply a heavy crimp.

I get a right around 725fps out of a new 2007 4" Model 21-4

Very pleasant range round you can shoot all day.
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Old 04-17-2017, 02:33 PM
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A faster powder should give you less shot to shot variation but reality, unless you & your gun are capable of sub 2" groups at 25yds offhand, you aren't going to notice accuracy issues.
I used to shoot RedDot in the 45colt for light loads. it fills the case better than TightGroup but is position sensitive where TG is not supposed to be. Yes you can use Dacron over powder wad but a PITA IME.
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Old 04-17-2017, 05:08 PM
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The heavier the charge the more consistent of a burn of the powder you have. Makes perfect sense when you think about it.
It's funny how some perceive a problem when there really isn't one.
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Old 04-17-2017, 09:41 PM
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Lots of good info here. Another of the not position sensitive powders is AA-2 along with the already mentioned Titegroup. Thanks Forrest r for the case density info for the different powders. I have 8# of Clays and 8# of American select for when I get back to the trap range. I'll give them a try in light .44 mags.
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Old 04-17-2017, 10:11 PM
Elksticker Elksticker is offline
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I agree, lots of good stuff here. Was nice to find out those deviations aren't likely to affect the shooting I do much. Just loaded a pile with Elmer's "gallery load", 5 gr of Bullseye, albeit with a different, lighter bullet. Amazing what a guy can do one handed. Have some Titegroup, going to load some of that next. Not sure of a starting point, will 6 gr give me 8-900 fps? Going to have to talk my wife into taking me to town to look for other powders, she hates going there more than I do.
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Old 04-18-2017, 02:27 AM
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If you said what kind of primers you were using I missed it. My guess is that you are using standard large pistol. Try a magnum primer. That might fix all your problems with inconsistent burn and velocity.

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