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 Competition Shooting and Reloading
 44/40 reloading for a pistol
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Advanced Member

5944 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2017 :  12:53:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Looking at getting a 44/40 revolver from the auction side, but in another forum someone mentioned that hand loading for the 44/40 "has a reputation for needing caution". If I do decide to purchase this gun, it will be my first 44/40, so I have no experience with loading for it. Is it something that I need to worry about?? Thanks in advance.

Advanced Member

5557 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2017 :  03:11:59 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I loaded for one maybe 40 years ago. Proper cast bullet diameter can be an issue for good accuracy. The requirements for the barrel can be larger than the chamber can accommodate so accuracy would suffer.

Pays to watch the pressure levels in old guns. Old brass such as balloon head cases and even the more modern ones (though still old) shot with mercuric primers should be avoided. I suggest starting with new brass. Starline has 250 cases for like $80.

I tend to like full power loads in stuff and would do actual black powder, Unique at lower levels is acceptable, smells better and is easier cleaning.
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Cancer Fighter

7699 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2017 :  03:29:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Should help get you started


What other dungeon is so dark as ones own heart, what jailer so inexorable as ones own mind.

Nothing gold can stay. Nature's first green is gold. Her hardest hue to hold. Her early leafs flower. But only so an hour. Than leaf subsides to leaf. So eden sank to grief. So dawn goes down today. Nothing gold can stay. (Robert Frost)
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New Member

74 Posts

Posted - 10/16/2017 :  7:39:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
if your gun is new and you want to shoot smokeless we load a lot with a 200 gr lead and a cowboy load found in some guides red dot I think list a load for modern guns
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Advanced Member

3670 Posts

Posted - 11/10/2017 :  11:26:35 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ref: "needing caution".
Years ago I loaded for a 44/40 (Colt Bisley) and a 38/40 (Ruger S.A.)
The brass I had for both (don't recall for sure but I know some was Starline and maybe some WW and RP) was very thin in the forward section and easily damaged during both sizing and seating operations.
Other than that, and the already mentioned question of proper bullet diameter, reloading presented no special problems.
Measure your cylinder throats, size bullets accordingly (if necessary) and ENJOY!!!

NRA Life Member
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