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Long Range 44 Mag

 
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  #1  
Old 07-05-2014, 11:33 AM
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Long Range 44 Mag

For those days when you get tired of carrying that 12 lb 338 Edge around, here is a novel idea. Leave it in the truck and grab the 44. Not a long range gun you say? (Well OK, it isn't but you can make it better with the following trick.)

A while back I was checking out the bullet aisle as the local Cabela's. I noticed some Hornady FTX 265 grain bullets for the 444 Marlin sitting on the shelf. I said to myself at the time, too bad I can't load those in my Super Redhawk. Those would be an upgrade to ballistic coefficient and would be about as good as you could get out of a pistol. Hornady has some pointy 225 grain FTX 44 cal bullets that look similar but the BC is only 0.150 compared to 0.225 for the 265 grain FTX. After standing there a while longer looking at the box of bullets, I thought to myself why can't I load those bullets? So I gave them a try. They work. See attached photo.

I did run into a problem along the way. The seating dies are setup for a bullet with some kind of flat nose or at least a very rounded one - but NOT a very pointed one. I eventually figured out a way to load them without mashing up the bullet. I used a screw-on wire connector which I set over the bullet and it provides a flat surface to the bullet seating die.

These bullets are featured in Hornady's LEVERevolution 444 Marlin ammo but they work great in my 44. This is without cutting down the case or deep seating them. I did try them in my buddies S&W 626 and they are too long for that gun as the bullet tips stick out of the cylinder just enough to keep it from rotating so for that pistol a little case trimming is in order.

I loaded these with 21.8 grains of W296 which gave 1,397 fps and 1,148 ft lbs of muzzle energy. As I said, the BC of this bullet is 0.225 which sucks compared to rifle bulets but that is better than all other 44 cal bullets of equal or less weight.
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Long Range 44 Mag-265-ftx.jpg  
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  #2  
Old 07-05-2014, 04:32 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

Looks good, may give them a try. Hornady shows 2 Cannelures for that bullet, I don't see 2 in your pic. If the 265 has 2 cannelures are chambers long enough to take advantage of the rear one?

I like the 300 XTP, BC .245 & you can seat them on the rear cannelure and get more powder space. By doing so you can get more powder space and puch them over 1300+ FPS as well.
Layne Simpson had a article on this years ago, here is a comment;
Layne Simpson's Shooter's Handbook: 600 Questions Answered - Layne Simpson - Google Books
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Old 07-05-2014, 05:35 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

Nomosendero

You are right, the latest Hornady handbook shows 2 cannelures not one on the 265 grain FTX. It has been a while since I bought these bullets so they must have made a tweak. They appear to have added the rear cannelure which I couldn't use in my cylinder.

The 300 XTP is the one bullet I've seen with a better BC at 0.245. What load are you using with that bullet and what pistol are you shooting? Any game taken with it? How did it perform?
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Old 07-05-2014, 07:49 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

Corbin makes a cannelure tool to put one where you want. I looked to see if they still carried them, and the thing is $159, shocker, I can't remember what mine cost 30 years ago, but it wasn't painful.
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Old 07-05-2014, 11:52 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

25 gr.296
Just getting back in the Redhawk business, my previous Redhawk was a 5.5, I shot cast in it. So with the Super Redhawk and 300 XTP, I will have to wait till fall to see results.
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Old 07-06-2014, 08:34 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

Elmer Keiths 600 yard shot

He was using a rather light for caliber remmy bullet but 2 for 4 @ 600 with blades aint bad. Putting down a wounded critter at that.
I usually shoot cast pills in my 44, and prefer a good swc or rfn with a wider metplat even at longer range. I'm still divided on the best weight to shoot, as my pops has 240 and 260 grain moulds and I have a pair of 200 grain moulds.
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  #7  
Old 07-07-2014, 02:05 PM
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Re: Long Range 44 Mag

25 gr of 296 with a 300 gr bullet in 44 mag is way HOT. I use 20 gr of 296 or H110 with 300 s. I didn't think the case would hold that much and still seat a bullet.
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