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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 03-23-2020, 06:00 PM
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Default Cartridge Smoke & the .44 Special -

I typically shoot varying kinds of .44 special ammo in my 3" 629-6 - the cheap stuff as well as the more expensive. However, I've gotten to the point where shooting at an indoor range isn't pleasant because the ammo smokes so damn much that there's almost a cloud after every shot.

Do others here have that experience with .44 special cartridges?

Thanks-

Rich
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Old 03-23-2020, 06:06 PM
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I shot a box of Remington wheel gun 44 Special at the range 2 weeks ago, no such problem
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Old 03-23-2020, 06:08 PM
Protocall_Design Protocall_Design is offline
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If you are shooting lubed lead bullets, a lot of the smoke is the lube burning off. Also, sounds like that range doesn't have good enough ventilation.
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Old 03-23-2020, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Protocall_Design View Post
If you are shooting lubed lead bullets, a lot of the smoke is the lube burning off. Also, sounds like that range doesn't have good enough ventilation.
Bingo! I think that's the issue!

Thank you!
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Old 03-23-2020, 06:36 PM
Dave Lively Dave Lively is offline
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Cheap is relative when it comes to 44 ammo.

I quit reloading and buy factory now. About the least expensive 44 ammo I can find for my S&W 69 is cowboy loads from Georgia Arms which is a about $.55 around after shipping and taxes. This is really smoky stuff and sounds about like what you are describing. As someone else mentioned, all ammo with cast bullets is smoky.

As an alternative I tried a couple of boxes of Magtech low recoil 240 grain FMJ which is about $.60 a round after shipping and taxes from sgammo. Very clean and just as pleasant to shoot as the cowboy loads. Well worth the extra 10%. I ordered several boxes right before CV19 really started to ramp up and am glad I did. All ammo is going to be scarce for a while.

If you have to do whatever it takes to cut costs there is always reloading. I used to enjoy it but it got to be such a tedious chore I decided I would rather shoot half as much than deal with it.
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Old 03-23-2020, 07:07 PM
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I reload for my revolvers and only use plated bullets so I'm not getting excessive smoke.

I've loaded lead bullets but won't do it anymore because it is just plain too messy.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:05 PM
wrangler5 wrangler5 is offline
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I don't shoot 44s, but do reload for 32, 38 and 357, and find that the polymer coated lead bullets that are readily available from lots of sources today, are very clean-shooting. They're also very clean to handle, and are only slightly more expensive than lead.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:17 PM
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Yep- I shoot a lot of the polymer coated ones too. I really like them.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:26 PM
Mike, SC Hunter Mike, SC Hunter is offline
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I shoot my cast, lubed .44 special bullets pushed by Unique powder. I shoot outside. A little lube smoke but that's OK........I have never fired a round on an indoor range. Hope I never have too. My .44 spl. loads cost about a nickle a piece.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:32 PM
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The difference between lubed and poly coated bullets is like night and day. I don't even buy lubed bullets any more and since I started using the poly bullets there's no real advantage to plated bullets anymore either. At least none I ever found.
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Old 03-23-2020, 09:55 PM
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I had a cop friend who liked to shoot his T/C Patriot 45 cal muzzleloading pistol on the dept. range. A few shots would fill the place with smoke!
You could try a couple rounds of 44 special with the original black powder charge. After that, most other stuff won't seem so bad!

Jim
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Old 03-23-2020, 11:53 PM
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Sometimes smoke is caused by powder that is not completely ignited. The solution to that is typically to switch to a faster burning powder.

Lubricated lead alloy bullets make more smoke than jacketed ones. But that's OK, because lead .44 spl loads are $35 / box of 50. My handloads are about $8.
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Old 03-24-2020, 10:16 AM
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I usually shoot at an outdoor range but during a recent stint of rotten weather I went to an indoor range. Shooting my homecast LSWC rounds I had a lubricant cloud formed in just a few rounds. For my own benefit and out of consideration of other shooters on the line I set them aside and finished my range time with the jacketed rounds I had with me.
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Old 03-24-2020, 10:34 AM
Protocall_Design Protocall_Design is offline
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For those who cast and lube their own, White Label brand carnauba wax lube is one of the best out there. It is economical, does a good job of lubing, and is low smoke.
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Old 03-24-2020, 12:22 PM
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If you reload ...coated or plated bullets will help as will lead free primers !

I read a test done in one of the magazines and the lead free primers were considerably 'cleaner" shooting than the standard primers...
Which surprised the heck out of me !
Might be something to try if your reloads are too smokey .
Gary
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Old 03-25-2020, 08:17 PM
Jimmys&w Jimmys&w is offline
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I shot Cowboy Action Grizzly 44 Special 240 Grain and boy and howdy were they smoky. Sweet shooting but smoky.
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Old 03-25-2020, 09:14 PM
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If you buy rather than reload, I recommend:

44 Special 200gr FMJ - Precision ONe Ammunition

I've shot a bunch of it with no issues. Save your brass and sell it here!
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