Author Topic: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads  (Read 1590 times)

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Offline JoseBob

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Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« on: October 24, 2010, 07:51:24 am »
Has any one loaded the .444 with black powder? 

I filled the case of one and it held 65 gr of Goex 3f. I reduced this to 60 gr and thumb seated a 240 lead SWC on top.  I took it out back and it fired with some authority as judged by the recoil. All I had was large pistol primers, but it was enough to set off the BP.  I did hit the backstop, but impact was higher than regular factory loads. 

I immediately cleaned the handi and after removing the BP residue, I continued to get streaks on the cleaning patches.  I am thinking that that one shot left a lot of lead in the bore.  I have since obtained some 240 Jacketed bullets and iffin I try this again, will use them. 

I have a red dot sight on the rifle now, but plan on scoping it ASAP. Its an older green laminate stock H & R Ultra-Handi.  I shoot muzzleloaders a lot and have BP, but not smokeless powder.  I would like to make this work as the cost of factory .444's is through the roof.  Last box I bought was $18.00 and now they are double that. 

Draw a fine bead on em Son!  Bobby
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Offline gcrank1

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2010, 05:10:03 pm »
A softer BP lube might help but my guess is your lead bullet is not quite a large enough dia, to keep the gas all behind it, or too hard to bump up to help seal them off, or a combination to the two.
Fit one of your bullets into the fully fire-formed case necks. If it falls in the bullet is too small a dia. for the throat. Gas gets by and down the rifling grooves and acts like a cutting torch melting lead off the bullet and onto the barrel.
It hit higher because the velo is slower and thus the recoil impulse/barrel time of the bullet lifts the muzzle more before the bullet gets out.
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Offline Spanky

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2010, 05:40:45 pm »
Try some .430 or .431 bullets lubed for black powder.
Make sure you clean the barrel really well after the black powder too... I take the barrel off and put it in the tub with hot water and Dawn dish detergent... I scrub the barrel until the water runs clean through it and then dry it inside and out.



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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2010, 06:46:42 pm »
.432" cast shoot great in my .444 Handi, just wee bit faster than BP tho!  ;D

Tim

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Offline JoseBob

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2010, 07:17:15 am »
These were .430 SWC's. I have a bunch from a long time ago and thought they might work good.  I am sure that my barrel has the 1 in 38 in twist.  I have some .433 round balls I may try for a reduced load.  I did find a box of .444 for $23.95 yesterday in a little out of the way country store.  Sure beats $35 + at the Super Sports Stores.  I am just looking for a cheaper way to shoot it.  Still planning on putting a scope on it instead the Red Dot.  Thanks for the replies. 

Draw a fine bead on em Son!  Bobby
Draw a fine bead on em Son!

Offline Graycg

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2010, 11:14:42 am »
I have used American Pioneer black powder substitute, 60 grains on top of a 310 grain lyman cast bullet with a milk jug wad between the bullet and powder, using LBT Blue and it shoots pretty good, velocity is low, but bullets shoot well.  I've been playing the same game with the 357 max also... 
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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2010, 03:12:56 pm »
Junior's article on loading BP cartridges for the 45/70 would probably provide good insight on loading for the 444 Marlin.  When (if) I can remember what thread the link to this fine article is in I will post it.  I think it is in the H&R Muzzleloader section but not for sure.

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2010, 03:32:41 pm »
"Always do right, this will gratify some and astonish the rest" -  Mark Twain

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2010, 04:35:03 pm »
Thanks Tim, I bet you never lose your truck keys. ;D

BB
Why be difficult, when with a little extra effort you can be impossible?

Wife's Handis;  300 BLKOUT

MINE:  270W, 308x444, 44 Bodeen Belted Magnum PI (Profino Improved), 444M shorty, 444M, 45 ACP shorty,  45 Cal Smokeless MZ, 50cal 26" SS Sidekick, 50 cal 24" Huntsman, 50 cal 26" Huntsman, 50-70 Govt Shikari, Tracker II 20 ga shorty, 12ga Tracker II shorty WITHOUT scope, 10 ga  Pardner Smoothbore slug gun, 10ga Pardner Turkey & 24ga Profino Custom rifled slug gun.

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2010, 05:09:21 pm »
Not yet.......knock wood!!  :D

Tim
"Always do right, this will gratify some and astonish the rest" -  Mark Twain

Offline Catshooter45

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Re: Black Powder .444 Marlin Loads
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2010, 05:20:07 pm »
Can't imagine why the Holy Black wouldn't work just fine once you get the right size bullet.  Drive one of those round balls through the bore and measure it.  The go at least .001 bigger.

You can also use a pistol powder, I do in my .45-70.  I use fifteen grains of Universal Clays under a 365 grain cast bullet.  Shoots very well and for practice or fun you could go a lot lighter.  The round ball over a light charge of Bullseye should work.

Good luck.


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