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  #1  
Old 11-07-2006, 06:24 PM
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H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum


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I just bought an H & R Handi Rifle in .44 Rem Mag to use during the Mississippi primitive weapon deer season. It has already been discussed here on the forum, but in the state of Mississippi a front stuffer is not the only rifle that may be used during muzzle loading season. See regulations below.

I am trying to find .429"-.430" pointed bullets (plastic or otherwise) with a high ballistic coefficient to handload in the 44 mag case. The Hornady XTP 44 Magnum pistol bullets are good bullets but their blunt nose looses velocity very quickly.

I have been looking at .50 caliber sabot bullets. They use 40, 44 and 45 caliber bullets in the sabot but most do not indicate the actual diameter of the bullet, which must be .429"-.430" for use in a 44 Mag case. Overall length of the loaded round in not critical since it is used in a single shot rifle.

I am interested in the TC Shockwave plastic pointed 250-260 grain bullet but TC does not publish the actual bullet diameter.

If anyone is loading PLASTIC TIPPED saboted bullets in their 50 caliber muzzle loader, please advise as to:

BRAND, WEIGHT and BULLET DIAMETER.

Thanks.
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H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum-mississippi-primitive-weapons-001-20%25.jpg   H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum-.429-sabot-barnes.jpg   H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum-.429-ballistic-tip-cabelas.jpg  
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Old 11-08-2006, 04:13 AM
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I have never seen any balistic tip .429 dia bullets before. You may need to find a a trajacated cone type. But at ranges your going to be shooting your H&R Handi Rifle, are you sure it matters.

What kind of max range are you expecting to shoot at game with that anyways?
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  #3  
Old 11-08-2006, 08:32 AM
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I would suggest you slug the bore before you try anything to see what the bore spec it. Most current production 44mag Handis are overbore, that and the slow 1:38" twist rate make them a problem to shoot accurately. A long spitzer bullet is going to compound that problem. There's encouraging news tho, I member at GBO just bought an accessory barrel that slugged at .430, so there's hope for improvement!

http://www.graybeardoutdoors.com/smf...#msg1098270636
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Old 11-08-2006, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrongtarget
I would suggest you slug the bore before you try anything to see what the bore spec it. Most current production 44mag Handis are overbore, that and the slow 1:38" twist rate make them a problem to shoot accurately. A long spitzer bullet is going to compound that problem. There's encouraging news tho, I member at GBO just bought an accessory barrel that slugged at .430, so there's hope for improvement!

http://www.graybeardoutdoors.com/smf...#msg1098270636
.

Wrongtarget,

Thanks for the link to graybeardoutdoors.com . After reading it, I think I'll just make a lamp out of my new .44 Mag Handi Rifle.
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Old 11-08-2006, 07:49 PM
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No need to do that, with the right cast bullet, they're good shooters, and reamed to 445Supermag they're fantastic from all reports. Marshall's 250gr .432" bullet seems to be the go to cast bullet for either and the 265gr GD and 300gr XTP work well in the 445SM with max charges, what's not to like about em, just takes a little homework to make it work for something besides a lamp!! Just thought you'd like to know up front how to deal with it and make a shooter out of it. If you need more info, let me know, I'll dig some links out that will give you a leg up on it.
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Old 11-08-2006, 10:25 PM
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When I bought the .44 Mag Handi several days ago, it was the only .38+ caliber I could find in three Mississippi counties. All of the dealers were out of 45-70's, 38-55's and 500 S&W's.

Since I have not fired it yet, I have several choices:

1. Return it for a refund.
2. Return it for store credit and order a 45-70.
3. Send it to H&R and have a 45-70, 450 Marlin and/or 500 S&W barrel(s) fit to the frame. The cost per barrel is only $85 + shipping.
4. Rechamber it to 445 Super Mag, as you suggested.
5. Least expensive but last choice--try to make it shoot.

I have two boxes of Marshall's 280 grain .432" WFN-GC bullets that I bought to load in a Marlin 1894SS. Maybe I'll load-up 100 of them and take both 44's to the range and see what happens.

Do you have any suggested loads? I have H110, AA#9, 2400 and Blue Dot powders.
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Old 11-09-2006, 09:20 AM
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Actually the cost of the barrels is a bit more when you add the $15 fitting per barrel to the equation, $10 return shipping per order, not barrel, so if you want multiple barrels, now would be the time to do it.

And ask em to do a trigger job on it if you so desire, they'll reduce it to about 3-3┬Żlbs if it's not already under 5lbs or so, I sent 2 in that had under 5lb triggers already at about 4lbs, they never touched either one of em.

Just be glad you didn't find a .38-55, they're another kettle of worms with their oversize bores and undersize necks, same issue as marlin .38-55s from what I've read. I have one, but I had it changed to a .405 Winchester before I even shot it!

The .45-70, .450M and .500S&W are all good shooters, have never read of a problem with any of em, I have 2 .45-70 Handis and 2 .45-70 BCs, one of which is a .45-120 now, they all shoot exceptionally well with pretty much any load, cast or jacketed, it's really too bad the .44mag has such a bad rep, it's really a cool caliber, but I won't buy one unless I can get one of the older cut rifled barrels or H&R gets their head on straight and makes em right to begin with!

Here's a thread on powder recommendations, some of which were probably mentioned in the other link.

http://www.graybeardoutdoors.com/smf...html#msg421648
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  #8  
Old 11-09-2006, 12:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NITRO
I have two boxes of Marshall's 280 grain .432" WFN-GC bullets that I bought to load in a Marlin 1894SS. Maybe I'll load-up 100 of them and take both 44's to the range and see what happens.

Do you have any suggested loads? I have H110, AA#9, 2400 and Blue Dot powders.
Here's a combination that should reduce your load development time to zilch. Typically this load clocks over the chronograph into the single digits in ES and SD. The load is primer specific, not due to pressure, but for ballistic uniformity. If it doesn't perform properly for you, it's probably because you substitued some other primer than the Winchester Large Pistol as specified.

BTB .432"-280g WFNGC/22.0g H110/WLPP/Starline Brass

This load, when loaded with the .432" diameter bullets you have on hand, should make that little Handi-Rifle the shootin'est single-shot you've ever handled!

Let us know how they perform for you!

Have a great weekend, and God bless,
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  #9  
Old 11-11-2006, 07:52 PM
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Marshall,

I have all of your recommended components on my reloading bench. I'll load-um up shortly and get to the range in a few days.
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Old 11-15-2006, 06:21 PM
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High or Extra-High Rings

I have been told that since the scope mount fastens to the barrel, either high or extra-high rings are required on the Handi Rifle, depending on ring brand. Seems like eyepiece and objective bell clearence are both issues.

Anyone have any recommendations? I am going to mount a 2-7x32 scope and don't want to order the wrong size.

Thanks.
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Old 11-18-2006, 05:29 AM
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I would imagine in the near future that Hornadys leverevolution bullets will be available as components. The 444 marlin bullet sould fit youir application perfect.
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  #12  
Old 11-18-2006, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NITRO
I have been told that since the scope mount fastens to the barrel, either high or extra-high rings are required on the Handi Rifle, depending on ring brand. Seems like eyepiece and objective bell clearence are both issues.

Anyone have any recommendations? I am going to mount a 2-7x32 scope and don't want to order the wrong size.

Thanks.
The interference point will be the hammer and power ring or ocular bell, even 50mm objectives aren't a problem. I use medium Burris Signature Zee rings almost exclusively, sometime highs are required, but their highs are equal to most mediums at .420" tall, medium Sig Zees are .270 tall. There are a couple alternatives too, see my low profile modifications link in the FAQ and Help sticky at GBO.

Tim

http://www.graybeardoutdoors.com/smf...c,86991.0.html

50mm WTC18 mounted in med rings, hammer ext required!
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Old 11-18-2006, 04:18 PM
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I found some extra high Weaver rings. They cost about what the leupold high rings cost. The cost was under $20.00. Either one should work. If you go to a gun store, they may let you mount the scope there. Or, they may want to do it for a price. It should still be under $20.00. Your best bet would be high or extra high. Mount it and try the hammer.
Good luck
Tom
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Old 11-19-2006, 06:32 AM
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Does anyone remember the .44 Mag. Max. (Mad Max) we discussed (cussed?) years ago? Regards, James
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Old 11-19-2006, 08:41 AM
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James, how does the 44 Mag Max differ from the .445 Supermag?

Thx,

Tim



445 Supermag
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Old 11-19-2006, 10:55 AM
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The .44 Mag Max was designed for conversions on .30-30 Marlins actions and later found it was excellent in rechambered NEF's that were in .44 Mag.
The .44 MM has more case capacity and uses a slower burn powder (RE7, IMR 4227, IMR 4198).
I had the reamer cut and have rechambered quite a few local NEF's.
I first planed it on the .444 Marlin hulls, but later switched to the .356 Winchester with the .30-30 rim for various actions.
The .356 hull fireforms excellent and due to the free bore of the .44MM, hull triming is easy and needs no inside neck turning (as does the .444 case)
The entire .44 MM project, along with the .375 Beartooth and .416 Beartooh, generated quite a bit of talk.....but it all turned out to be just that......talk!
The last I heard, Steve Adams at Lake City, Florida, had a supply of new original Marlin .44 Mag barrels set up for the Marlin 336. There was one prototype 336 fully converted (he has it).
Regards, James
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Old 11-19-2006, 12:48 PM
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Very interesting, thanks for sharing!

Tim
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Old 11-21-2006, 12:38 PM
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[QUOTE=Wrongtarget]The interference point will be the hammer and power ring or ocular bell, even 50mm objectives aren't a problem. I use medium Burris Signature Zee rings almost exclusively, sometime highs are required, but their highs are equal to most mediums at .420" tall, medium Sig Zees are .270 tall. There are a couple alternatives too, see my low profile modifications link in the FAQ and Help sticky at GBO.


Tim,

Thanks for the info. After trying several different scopes, and brands/size of rings that I had on-hand, I settled on a Leupold Vari-X II 3-9x40 in Weaver Quad Lock rings, aka Simmons 4x4 rings.

The hammer and extension fit neatly into a recess in the scope between the power adjustment and focus lock rings.
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H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum-handi-rifle-003-24%25.jpg   H&R Handi Rifle in .44 Magnum-handi-rifle-001-26%25.jpg  
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Last edited by NITRO; 11-24-2006 at 08:24 PM. Reason: Deleted a photo.
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Old 11-21-2006, 12:55 PM
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Has anyone rechambered the Handy to .444 Marlin? The new pointed Hornady LeverEvolution bullet is not yet available in component form and not likely to be until demand drops off.

Meanwhile, instead of rechambering to 44 Max Mag or 445 Super Mag, just go all the way up to the .444. A big plus is the availability of factory ammo. A big minus is the recoil.

But, will the handy accurately shoot the new .444 ammo? I slugged the bore and the grooves are .432" and the lands are .424".
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Last edited by NITRO; 11-24-2006 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 11-21-2006, 02:40 PM
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You're welcome, that's the nice thing about the 4" of eye relief on the Leupys, you can mount it just as you have and not have to go higher if the scope was mounted a little further back.

Just wait until next year, the .444 Marlin Handi will be available, hopefully with a 1:20 twist and proper bore size and Ballard riflling, it should be a real shooter in comparison to the 44Mag Handi with the 1:38 twist micro-groove, maxi bore barrels!! I don't know what the original .444 Marlin Handis had for barrels, they're pretty scarce.

Tim

http://www.internetguncatalog.com/de...?ItemNum=41769

Last edited by Wrongtarget; 11-21-2006 at 02:44 PM. Reason: add Sports South link
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