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#6850123 - 09/07/12 Loading the .44-40...
derby_dude Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 11/22/06
Posts: 34261
Loc: Montana, Lewis and Clark Count...
Anybody loading the 44-40? I read that it can be a hard round to load for because there are so many bore sizes out there. It is suggested to get a bore cast to get the right bore size for the bullet. Any other problems?

I posted this on the Handguns forum but realized I probably should have posted this here as I'm thinking of purchasing a Uberti 1860 Henry for fun shooting. Nothing magnum out of it. Looking at the 44-40 out of a 24" barrel. I figure the 44-40 should be as close to the original .44 Rim-fire as I'm likely to get.

I came across this article I thought I'd post this for whatever it's worth.

http://www.leverguns.com/articles/4440.htm


Edited by derby_dude (09/07/12)
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#6850166 - 09/07/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: derby_dude]
shrapnel Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 06/05/07
Posts: 12995
Loc: Bozeman, MT
Don't worry about your bore size, the cast bullets you can buy at the local gun store will work fine for you. Although I don't own any Uberti's, they are well made guns and shoot shoot great. I use Trail Boss powder for my 44-40 and it works great. I don't remember the weight, but Trail Boss data is easy to get and won't hurt you or the gun...
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If you want to fit in with a new crowd, ask them if they know shrapnel. There is no friggin' way they won't know who that man is. He is the Chuck Norris of Montana and you will have a nice icebreaker to discuss.
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#6850362 - 09/07/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: shrapnel]
derby_dude Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 11/22/06
Posts: 34261
Loc: Montana, Lewis and Clark Count...
Thanks. I was planning on using one of the Montana cast bullet makers which usually cast a bullet to your specs well at least within reason.

I found the load for Trail Boss under the pistol data in my new Hodgdon reloading mag. That load should work real well in a 1860 Henry.

My Honda Accord lease is up this year and I plan on leasing a new Honda CR-V. Seems like that should call for a new rifle.

I also noticed that all dies for the 44-40 are steel so lubing looks to be necessary. Not a problem but something to keep in mine.
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Don't vote knothead, it only encourages them. Anonymous

"Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups." Anonymous

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#6874233 - 09/15/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: derby_dude]
Dan_Chamberlain Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 09/30/06
Posts: 5815
Loc: Illinois, by Missouri
I shoot an "Iron Framed" Uberti, which is really steel, but I digress. My loads run 1300fps in the long barreled Henry and feel like .22lr when shooting. My 50 yard accuracy is about 3" due to the cruddy sight picture, but that's certainly adequate for this kind of rifle. The barrel heats up, so having a shooting glove for the support hand helps a lot.

The .44-40 has a bit of a learning curve with reloading. You will probably ruin a few cases to start, but It's a great round to shoot and enjoy. Go slowly and enjoy the reloading session and you'll get the hang of it.

I"ve loaded a bunch of them in 777 and Pyrodex too.

Dan
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#6874878 - 09/15/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Dan_Chamberlain]
derby_dude Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 11/22/06
Posts: 34261
Loc: Montana, Lewis and Clark Count...
Holy moly, 1300 FPS, nothing wrong with that as long as it's safe.

I'm now looking at a Cimarron Uberti, steel frame. Most like brass alloy and if one is going to engrave it I guess that's the way to go. There were only 400 iron frame Henry's made before Henry went to the brass alloy for better aesthetics. Probably because brass engraved better than iron and rust prevention.

Have you tried the tang sights on the Uberti? I'm thinking tang sights on mine. Tired old eyes and all. Tang sights should improve the group size.

Thanks.
_________________________
Don't vote knothead, it only encourages them. Anonymous

"Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups." Anonymous

"Self-reliance, free thinking, and wealth is anathema to both the power of the State and the Church." Derby Dude



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#6875178 - 09/15/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Dan_Chamberlain]
Border Doc Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 12/23/05
Posts: 750
Loc: Desertside, New Mexico Territo...
Originally Posted By: Dan_Chamberlain

The .44-40 has a bit of a learning curve with reloading. You will probably ruin a few cases to start, but It's a great round to shoot and enjoy. Go slowly and enjoy the reloading session and you'll get the hang of it.
Dan


Ain't that the gospel truth!

And, yes, a quality tang sight is very much worthwhile.
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#6877064 - 09/16/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Border Doc]
Dan_Chamberlain Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 09/30/06
Posts: 5815
Loc: Illinois, by Missouri
I'm thinking 1300 is safe. Think about it. 1100 was safe in originals. I know that's an over simplification, but when my loads chrono 1297 I round up. Still they are just about as sedate in the heavy Henry as can be. No signs of sticky extraction. No leaking around the chamber. Your own findings may vary.

Dan
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"It's a source of great pride, that when I google my name, I find book titles and not mug shots." Daniel C. Chamberlain

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#7024400 - 10/31/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Dan_Chamberlain]
the_shootist Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 05/21/03
Posts: 19006
Loc: NW Ontario, Canada
I think if you look at a good drawing of the cartridge, you will see a bitt of a shoulder on the case, hence the steel dies and no carbide. My guess, anyway.
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#7024407 - 10/31/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: the_shootist]
CrowRifle Online   content
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 05/28/04
Posts: 7705
Loc: The Piedmont of NC
When I played with loading the 44.40 for a friend, we had trouble with cases stretching and only getting about 3 reloads from them. But in a rifle it should make a nice little deer thumper. As Skeeter tells it, the old 44.40 shoots hard.
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#7062470 - 11/10/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: CrowRifle]
saddlesore Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 11619
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
If you are not real worried about accuracy,the local gun store bullets will work, but if you want to get serious, push a lead ball that is slightly oversized (Maybe like a 45 cal round bal) and measure it. 44-40 can run .425-.429, and sometimes bigger.
Then order some cast bullets from Dardas( Essexvile, MI) that are .002 bigger in diameter than what you measured.

Dardas will size to your specs.

www.dardascastbullets.com He ships the USPS Flat Rate box and shipping for 1000 will run about $11.00

My 38-40 measures .401 and the std 40 cal. bullets would not hold even a 6" group. The.403 bullets I ordered now do about 3" groups.


Edited by saddlesore (11/10/12)
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#7147025 - 12/05/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: saddlesore]
Timberlake Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/04/05
Posts: 1555
Loc: NE Iowa
Same topic.....loading the 44-40

I'm having trouble with crimping the bullet on the case. Having too many back into the case which leads to some trying moments.

I'm using the Lyman'098 205 gr bullet which doesn't actually have a crimping groove. Near as I can tell, I have to create one on the first driving band. Sometimes it works, sometimes not so good.

Rifle is a M92 Win and the loads are moderate, such as 9 grn Unique and 17 gr 4227. Cases are Starline. Lead is 20:1. OAL is 1.60

Yes, I'm new at loading pistol type ammo. Thanks
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#7147597 - 12/05/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: saddlesore]
Mesa Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 11/17/10
Posts: 1663
Loc: OC, CA
Latest "Rifle" magazine has an article on the .44-40 and some suggested loads.
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#7147997 - 12/05/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Mesa]
Timberlake Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/04/05
Posts: 1555
Loc: NE Iowa
Rats! I no longer have a subscription. Thanks
_________________________
The things that come to those that wait may be the things left by those who got there first.

Unk

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#7178089 - 12/13/12 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Timberlake]
saddlesore Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 11619
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Timberlake.I had the same problem crimping a 38-40. Necked down44-40. The Lee FC would not do it on jacketed bullts,but works on cast with cannelure.There are two cannelure making tools on the market ,but don't get the $60 one.
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If God wanted you to walk and carry things on your back, He would not have invented stirrups and pack saddles

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#7359656 - 01/25/13 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: saddlesore]
Fairshake Offline
Member

Registered: 02/02/09
Posts: 47
I know this is an older posting but maybe the OP will check back in.
I've loaded the 44WCF for many years and fired thousands of rounds in SASS matches. Not the Mousefart loads you hear about but full house loads that match the original factory of 1873 and after. If you use smokeless powder then the 427098 Lyman bullet sized at .429 in a 20-1 alloy will give MOA accuracy with 8 grains of Unique. If the cases are cleaned and you lube the cases they will give you many reloads, much more than the 3 that was posted.
I have found that the false information on the 44WCF is passed around by persons who have never even fired or owned the rifle.
To the OP's posting on the 44 rim fire and the comparison with the 44WCF, there is none. The 44WCF out performs it hands down and anything hit with the 44WCF will not know the differrence between it and the 45 Colt.
If you order your bullets from one of the large vendors you will receive bullets that are too hard for the caliber and it will not obiturate in the barrel. You should use a bullet that has a 10 BHN for best results.
The Uberti rifles will be the correct size of .427 if a later model. I have had several that had this size barrel. I cast my own bullets and size them on my Star at .429
I have cases that have over 10 loadings on them and the primer pockets are still tight. I only shoot the real black powder.
Marlin and others have decided on their own to make the 44WCF with barrels as large as 430 so that they will shoot the same bullet as the 44mag. A bullet weight of about 215 is max for the caliber with 205 being the original loading. This is lead and not the jacketed 217 bullets of 20th century loadings that I'm speaking of.
I went to Accurate moulds and had the owner Tom make me a copy of the original bullet but with wider and deeper lube grooves so that it will hold more lube for BP shooting.
A friend of mine by the name of John Kort had some bullets designed with him also. In fact John has worked with Tom on many different calibers.
Take your time and sort out the truth from the bull and you will find the 44WCF just as fun to shoot today as it was in 1873.
The original rifles were actually made with bores of .425 size. I have one of the original Lyman loading tools and the bullet cavity drops bullets that are .425 in size. Take Care David AKA Fairshake
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Shooter ot the Holy Black,Warthog,Bold,Deadwood Marshal,Border Vigilante,So that his place will never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat

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#8177125 - 10/21/13 Re: Loading the .44-40... [Re: Fairshake]
derby_dude Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 11/22/06
Posts: 34261
Loc: Montana, Lewis and Clark Count...
I have checked back in and thanks. I've decided to stay with my first love the Model 1911.

You all feel free to use this thread for whatever use it provides.


Edited by derby_dude (10/21/13)
_________________________
Don't vote knothead, it only encourages them. Anonymous

"Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups." Anonymous

"Self-reliance, free thinking, and wealth is anathema to both the power of the State and the Church." Derby Dude



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