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razorseal

Powder (smokeless and BP)

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Hey guys, 

 

So I'm going to a gun show tomorrow and will be buying some gun powder. 

 

Can you give me some suggestions for both BP and smokeless powder? 

 

Not everything will be in stock at the gunshow, so I'll buy what I find. It's cheaper this way because I don't have to pay the hazardous item shipping fee... 

 

It'll be for 44-40.  (can you give me some ideas for how much powder to load too?) 

 

I'll see if I can find some .428 ammo bullets and dies too (less I order online the better) 

 

And also will be looking for a 44-40 saa as well. So far locally all I found was 45 colt. I want matching ammo guns. 

 

Thanks guys! 

 

 

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I shoot 44-40 BP. I use what ever is cheapest in SASS shooting. I have used both 2F and 3F and found either to shoot well. I've used Goex, no-name and Graf&Sons. Using the 44-40, the chambers are always clean! Seach 44-40 black powder to find good loads, basically its a 44 caliber (.428 in our case) with 40 grains, which wont fit in the newer cases but I come close. The powder has to be compressed, i go about 1/4' compression. BULLETS, they Have to have black powder lube, SPG or make your own from beeswax and crisco, lots of data on this too on the net. Brass, I use Star Line, good stuff just be careful with the case mouth. Primers, large rifle, federals are all i use for BP, they can take a lighter hit from the hammer. I use WInchester for smokeless stuff, it helps to easily tell the BP form Smokeless stuff once its loaded.

I have both a lee press and a Dillon square deal B, I can crank out 100 rounds in 30 minutes on the dillon, I use the lee for other calibers or to try new stuff on my 44-40's. Good Luck with the hunt.

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You are getting way ahead of yourself.  Buy a reloading manual and read it carefully before buying supplies.  You will find acceptable smokeless powders for 44-40s with safe, tested charges for the bullets weights you intend to shoot.  I recommend learning to reload smokeless before trying BP.  Just buy 1-lb containers of powder before your buy 8-lb jugs so you don't get stuck with an inventory of powder you don't like.   Be advised that bullets lubed for smokeless powder often perform poorly using real black powder.  However they work well with some of the black powder subs.  Taking an experienced reloading mentor with you is a good idea.

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There's no one answer to any of your questions. It appears you're new to this game? If so, welcome!

 

Could you tell us more about your reloading and shooting background?

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OP, I strongly urge you to find a mentor and buy some reloading manuals. 

Unique and WW231 work well in 44WCF.

Use real BP and not the wannabe stuff.

OLG 

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Razor:

 

Suggestion:  Get yourself a copy of the Lyman Reloading Manual (or the Hornady), and a couple of reloading handbooks.  Read them thoroughly before you spend time or money on equipment or supplies.  If available, take an NRA reloading course for beginners; my gun club offered such a course for less than $30, and it was money very well spent.  

 

There are a lot of folks on this Wire that reload black powder, black powder substitutes, and smokeless powder; they will be generous with their time and advice; but before you start asking questions, get the books, read them, and grab a class if you can.  It will help immensely if you have a working knowledge of the reloading vocabulary and equipment first.

 

Welcome to the smoke and bang!

 

LL

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Man, do I sound that much of a rookie? I've only been reloading for 12 years! 

 

I have everything guys. I've been loading single stage Lee for some time now. I have taught others to load even. I only load for my precision rifle, 30.06. There is no crimping my rounds. But other than that should be somewhat similar. I asked what powder because every powder (at least in world of precision shooting) behaves diff... I use h4350, but others use r19 or r22 or such... So I was asking one that works well for you guys. I use 50 grains on my 30.06... I heard 7grain is good for these rounds. Those were my questions. 

 

I've looked for guides on loading smokeless for 44-40 but haven't seen much. (step by step) 

 

Thanks 

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https://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/pistol

 

Choose 44-40 and 200gr bullet:

 

I really like Clay's for Cowboy loads if I'm shooting smokeless. IMR SR4756 is my favorite for 44-40,  but it's been discontinued.

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I've priced powder at gun shows and find no bargins.  But I don't buy small quantities.  We use to buy Unique in 15lb keg!  Now I buy 8lb. 

 

Occasionally,  some of the outfits drop the hasmat fee on larger orders. Maybe shop around. 

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Unique works very well for 44-40, it’s what I use in my non SASS loads.

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I just checked Grafs & Sons and they have free hasmat on $200 order or more.

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1 hour ago, Tyrel Cody said:

https://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/pistol

 

Choose 44-40 and 200gr bullet:

 

I really like Clay's for Cowboy loads if I'm shooting smokeless. IMR SR4756 is my favorite for 44-40,  but it's been discontinued.

 

To add, HP38 and WW231 are the same powder.

Try 5.7-5.8gn under a 180-200gn lead bullet.

With BP, fill the case till the bullet compresses the powder 1/16-3/32 of an inch.

Do NOT use smokeless lubed bullets w/BP.

OLG 

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Just now, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

 

To add, HP38 and WW231 are the same powder.

Try 5.7-5.8gn under a 180-200gn lead bullet.

With BP, fill the case till the bullet compresses the powder 1/16-3/32 of an inch.

Do NOT use smokeless lubed bullets w/BP.

OLG 

 

Well, to correct OLG :P

 

You can use smokeless lubed bullets, but it is a good idea to use a lubed wad under them, or a filler and lube.

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1 minute ago, Tyrel Cody said:

 

Well, to correct OLG :P

 

You can use smokeless lubed bullets, but it is a good idea to use a lubed wad under them, or a filler and lube.

 

The one time I tried that. I had fouling like I have never seen. OMG:o

My Universal bullet lube these days is DGL.

OLG 

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A couple things to keep in mind when loading 44/40. With smokeless power you want a good firm crimp to make sure the lead don't collapse into the case. That's a rifle problem not revolver. What revolver are you going to use? If it's a Ruger you'll want to run .430 lead not .428. rugers had 44 mag size bores on their 44/40s. Even with other makes you'll either want to try a couple different sizes or slug the barrels before buying a bulk amount of lead. My rifle has a 429 bore my rugers have 430. I had a Pietra that was 427. Just something to think about. As for loading real black powder everyone has offered good advice the only thing I can add is use a good quality lube. I run light loads. Regular lead with smokeless lube but I run a dry wad with a healthy sized BP lube cookie over it then seat the bullet. Hope some of this is helpful and best of luck

 

T.F. Jack

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Goex 2F, use BP mineral based lube on bullets, 3F will be a little cleaner and a bit less smoke, but... recoil will be a tad sharper.  For smokeless,  HP38 (W231) with petroleum based lubes.  Either propellant can use 180 to 200 grain bullets... Buy yourself the Lyman 4th Ed. Cast Bullet Manual.  

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3 minutes ago, Turkey Flats Jack said:

A couple things to keep in mind when loading 44/40. With smokeless power you want a good firm crimp to make sure the lead don't collapse into the case. That's a rifle problem not revolver. What revolver are you going to use? If it's a Ruger you'll want to run .430 lead not .428. rugers had 44 mag size bores on their 44/40s. Even with other makes you'll either want to try a couple different sizes or slug the barrels before buying a bulk amount of lead. My rifle has a 429 bore my rugers have 430. I had a Pietra that was 427. Just something to think about. As for loading real black powder everyone has offered good advice the only thing I can add is use a good quality lube. I run light loads. Regular lead with smokeless lube but I run a dry wad with a healthy sized BP lube cookie over it then seat the bullet. Hope some of this is helpful and best of luck

 

T.F. Jack

 

Is all black powder similar? Like... Black powder is... Black powder. Lol... 

 

I saw unique get mentioned few times. I'll look at that. 

 

It's going to be a saa clone (so like an uberti or something) for the revolver. 

 

We used to have gander mountain that sold gun powder. It was regular prices and not hazmat fee (I buy 1b at a time).

 

Gun shows do have it. They're few little more than online but still no hazmat fee and no shopping few, so you save a few bucks. 

 

 

I'll be heading there to the gun show tomorrow, so I'll be posting and asking for opinions! 

 

 

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So why lube with BP? (and smokeless?) what's the purpose? 

 

And no crimp on BP because the bullet sits on the powder, so it won't get pushed by chambering and stacking in a lever? 

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7 minutes ago, Griff said:

Goex 2F, use BP mineral based lube on bullets, 3F will be a little cleaner and a bit less smoke, but... recoil will be a tad sharper.  For smokeless,  HP38 (W231) with petroleum based lubes.  Either propellant can use 180 to 200 grain bullets... Buy yourself the Lyman 4th Ed. Cast Bullet Manual.  

 

Just looking at it on Amazon. It's more about casting your own lead bullets... Something I'm not really planning on doing. 

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6 minutes ago, razorseal said:

 

Just looking at it on Amazon. It's more about casting your own lead bullets... Something I'm not really planning on doing. 

No it isn’t. That’s just a fraction of the info in there. 

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2 minutes ago, razorseal said:

Just looking at it on Amazon. It's more about casting your own lead bullets... Something I'm not really planning on doing. 

Nope.  Yes, they have a lot of detail on bullets cast from their molds... but a lead projectile of 200 grains from their mold is pretty much like any other 200 lead projectile.  I have manuals from bullet makers I have no bullet from.  And, FWIW, planning on, and end up doing are sometimes very different things.  I don't cast all my own bullets, but there are several that I can get from NO other source.  And for BP, you want to carry a LOT of lube, (in rifles), 

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Lube helps to keep the fouling soft with BP. I still crimp with BP because you have to get rid of the bell in the top of the case that is made so the bullet will start. Plus unless you have a fair amount of compression of the BP you can still get some movement of the bullet into the case. If you use some of the better BPs you will find the fouling will stay softer because they are made from a better grade of charcoal which will have more creosote in it.

kR

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You can load every caliber used in SASS with Unique, including shotgun.

Unique is my go to power for SASS.

Try 6.0-6.2gn w/180-200gn lead bullets.

OLG 

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9 minutes ago, razorseal said:

So why lube with BP? (and smokeless?) what's the purpose? 

 

 

Just something to consider...

If you use a BP substitute like APP, you don't have to buy two different kinds of bullets or lubed wads or anything else.  Just use the same bullets you use for smokeless.  One less thing to think about, keeping it simple.  Also, it's easier to find than Black Powder, especially in locales where storage restrictions imposed on dealers are especially cumbersome.   That's why no one in my city carries BP.

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13 minutes ago, razorseal said:

 

Is all black powder similar? Like... Black powder is... Black powder. Lol... 

Not all black powder is created equally. Very similar but not the same. I make my own and I'm getting within 10fps of goex cartridge so I'm content. But some burn cleaner some give better velocities. Stick with goex, Swiss, or any of the big brands and you won't notice much of a difference. Now if you find some off brand like dragon or elephant it'll work but not nearly as good of quality as others. Gaffs is also a good inexpensive powder but stay with 2 or 3 f as the reenactment powders tend to be lesser quality.

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Quote

Can you give me some suggestions for both BP and smokeless powder? 

Black Powder - Get any black powder you so choose to get. Better only get 1 or 2 of anything to see if you even like it.
Smokeless Powder - Unique, TrailBoss, Bullseye, Titegroup...whatever you can find in the handloading manuals

 

 

Quote

Not everything will be in stock at the gunshow, so I'll buy what I find. It's cheaper this way because I don't have to pay the hazardous item shipping fee..

I doubt it but you can figure that out when you get there.....specially after paying the admission fee!

 

Quote

It'll be for 44-40.  (can you give me some ideas for how much powder to load too?) 

Go easy at first, you may hate it

 

 

Quote

I'll see if I can find some .428 ammo bullets and dies too (less I order online the better) 

Good luck with that!

 

Quote

 I want matching ammo guns. 

Good luck with that in 44-40

 

Quote

Thanks guys! 

You are welcome!!

 

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31 minutes ago, razorseal said:

So why lube with BP? (and smokeless?) what's the purpose? 

 

And no crimp on BP because the bullet sits on the powder, so it won't get pushed by chambering and stacking in a lever? 

 

Lube keeps the fowling soft in the barrel so you can hit even a large steel target 5 feet in front of you. 

 

Always crimp. The Crimp holds the bullet inside long enough for good powder burn with smokeless as well as keeping it in, keeps it from dislodging in revolvers from the recoil. 

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48 minutes ago, razorseal said:

 

Is all black powder similar?

 

 

YES, better question is....Is all Black Powder alike? The answer is no!

FFFFFg - I forget, maybe it doesn't even exist
FFFFg is used in the flash pan of muskets.

FFFg is typically used in small calibers and mid range rifle calibers like the 44-40

FFg is typically used in rifle calibers in both rifle and revolver as well as the 45 Colt

Fg is typically used in cannons

Quality is key but a waist of money for CAS. I used to get "Skirmish" powder which is what I call floor sweepings. Skirmish is used by re-enactors and I am pretty sure I posted this somewhere already. It is the cheapest BP out there and it goes ding ding every time.  https://powderinc.com/black-powder.

 

Keep a milk jug with water in it. After you shoot your stage, dump the empties in the jug of water. Clean when you get home.


 

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25 minutes ago, Savvy Jack said:

Black Powder - Get any black powder you so choose to get. Better only get 1 or 2 of anything to see if you even like it.
Smokeless Powder - Unique, TrailBoss, Bullseye, Titegroup...whatever you can find in the handloading manuals

 

 

I doubt it but you can figure that out when you get there.....specially after paying the admission fee!

 

Go easy at first, you may hate it

 

 

Good luck with that!

 

Good luck with that in 44-40

 

You are welcome!!

 

 

Why good luck finding 44-40 at gunshow? That rare? I mean plenty online... Lol

 

Not paying admission fee tomorrow but it's OK if I do, I still get to look around and enjoy eye shopping lol

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17 minutes ago, razorseal said:

 

Why good luck finding 44-40 at gunshow? That rare? I mean plenty online... Lol

 

Not paying admission fee tomorrow but it's OK if I do, I still get to look around and enjoy eye shopping lol

IF, you find any 44WCF(not common at gun shows).

Lets hear what the price was.

OLG 

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2 minutes ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

IF, you find any 44WCF(not common at gun shows).

Lets hear what the price was.

OLG 

 

Let's see! Never know.. Found a 44wcf uberti rifle for 800 at a big "ripoff" gun shop by my house so we'll see! 

 

If not, I found a cimarron for 430 on gunbroker... I'll just order that

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9 hours ago, razorseal said:

 

Why good luck finding 44-40 at gunshow? That rare? I mean plenty online... Lol

 

Not paying admission fee tomorrow but it's OK if I do, I still get to look around and enjoy eye shopping lol

 

Razorseal,

 

You come on here asking these folks for advice, then when they give it to you, you question their experiences or basically mock their replies with a tad bit of doubtful sarcasm. If you doubt them, it is better to just keep it to yourself.

 

I have seen very little 44-40 handloading components at gunshows in the past 20 years, doesn't mean they don't have them....just means good luck. What I have seen is at a premium price. I have never ever purchased anything 44-40 from a gun show, and black powder bullets are non existent for me......that is what I have experienced down in the south east. May be different in your location.

If you want black powder bullets, that is bullets with black powder lube, I suggest purchasing from folks on this forum that cast them like Slim at http://www.whyteleatherworks.com/  There is a Big Button on his page that says BIG LUBES. The 44-40 "Toggle" looks to be the 43-215C and then there is the "traditional" Lyman 427098. For cas, you can't beat the 44 Mav.

For Smokeless bullets, try Desperado Cowboy Bullets and get some "Magma" design bullets. http://cowboybullets.com/44-cal-200-grain_p_21.html

 

These folks on here are trying to help save you a lot of trouble.

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