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First off thank you I am new here.
Now to the topic. I have 2 rifles chambered in this round. A cVA single shot and a 444 marlin lever gun. I am looking for opinions on the best all around load for these guns. From what I read the pistol bullets for the 44mag do not fair well with the velocity is round produces. I have reloaded but never cast any bullets. If you were building a round for whitetail deer and maybe bear. What would it be and why. I dont see moose and elk in the near future but might happen so not apposed to what you would do for those either.
 

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Deer are easily dispatched, despite any wild stories an uncle once told us.馃槈
Honestly black bear aren't difficult to anchor either.

Hazarding a guess, something in the 240-270gr range would be a good "do-all" bullet. I'm not a fan of Hornady's practices, but there's no denying their bullets are solid performers.

Cheers
 
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Welcome aboard! I have a bit of experience using the .444 in the various Marlin platforms. I've owned 3 Marlin .444s, one .444S and two .444Ps. I collected nice bucks with all 3 before settling on one, one of the .444Ps

With my remaining .444, I've also taken a black bear and hog. Everything I've harvested with a .444 has been taken with factory Hornady ammo, either the 265gr JFN or 265gr LE (tipped bullet).

I can't say that I've noticed a bit of difference between the two similar bullets and either one sighted in properly will give you a MPBR of 200+ yards.

I've also shot a similar Speer bullet of 270gr and I'd figure it's performance to be every bit as good (gold dot or deep curl).

I've not ever tried cast in any of my guns, nor the popular 300gr jacketed some like. The Hornady rounds are pretty reasonably priced and I see no need to look any further as they also shot very well in all 3 of my .444s. Of course, I'm also using mine for nothing larger/tougher than wild boar and black bear unlike others.

I also own and use the 45-70 (Marlin & Henry rifles) and the .450 BLR. However, I seemed to have used the .444s a good bit more often than the others the last decade or so.

There's a VERY good bullet comparison test over at the Marlin Owners forum that you might enjoy reviewing. It helped me see through some of the choices as, perhaps, not as good as others and actually is the reason I never really tried 300gr jacketed bullets. For typical big game hunting, the 265 seem plenty tough enough and also offer decent trajectories. The factory claimed velocities are both right around 2400 FPS for both the tipped and FN bullets.

Good luck!
 

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As a bullet caster I only use cast bullets in cartridges like the 444. I concur with the 265 gr bullet. This has become my favorite bullet for my 44 mag rifle. I believe you will find the 265 will retain much greater velocity over even 100 yds than a 240 gr. THe 265 will also give much greater penetration from an angled shot. With the velocities these type of rounds produce , a heavy bullet works better.
 

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Here' the link to the MO bullet comparison test:

 

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To the OP regarding your 444 Marlin庐 lever gun and LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition; how it will perform I can tell you this...
鈥 The LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition was specifically designed for shooting in the newer, faster 1:20" twist, Ballard rifles manufactured 1998>.
鈥 Marlin庐 444 rifles manufactured fro 1964-1997 have the much slower 1:38" Microgroove庐 twist. Most of these rifles DO NOT shoot the LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition well at all. A few will but most won't. I have two MG庐 444's and neither one will shoot the LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition. The problem is the bullet is too long to stabilize in the slower twist barrels.

Do you know what year your 444 Marlin庐 lever gun was made?
 
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My 1980 .444S shot the 265gr FTX LE ammo lights out. Sub MOA....
 
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Discussion Starter #11
To the OP regarding your 444 Marlin庐 lever gun and LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition; how it will perform I can tell you this...
鈥 The LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition was specifically designed for shooting in the newer, faster 1:20" twist, Ballard rifles manufactured 1998>.
鈥 Marlin庐 444 rifles manufactured fro 1964-1997 have the much slower 1:38" Microgroove庐 twist. Most of these rifles DO NOT shoot the LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition well at all. A few will but most won't. I have two MG庐 444's and neither one will shoot the LEVERevolution鈩 ammunition. The problem is the bullet is too long to stabilize in the slower twist barrels.

Do you know what year your 444 Marlin庐 lever gun was made?

It is brand new in the box.
 

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Welcome to the site , there is alot of information on here. Just keep asking someone will be able to help .
 

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I also have a new Marlin 444 (1-20 twist). I have had reasonable luck with the now obsolete Hornady 265 gr Interlock in the 444 and the Remington 240 gr factory load. I would imagine that the Hornady FTX would perform similarly to the Interlock. I think it would be the simplest and most effective place to start.
 

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just a few.........tc encore with a 23" MGM barrel in 444 marlin

265gr hornady fn with 41.0gr of h4198

200gr hornady xtp with 16.5gr of trail boss

275gr ranch dog with 41.0gr of rel7

275gr ranch dog with 40.0gr of h4198

280gr lfn gc with 41.5gr of rel7

280gr lfn gc with 42.0gr of h4198

280gr wfn gc with 38.5gr of rel 7

250gr mihek hp with 11.5gr of unique

220gr wc with 13.0gr of unique



265 - 280 gr goes around 2000fps


my favorite for deer/black bear
300gr fn gc (saeco) (12 bhn)
24.0gr of 2400
1.1gr +/- tuft of dacron
1624fps avg
 
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I see someone here continuing the myth about 1-38" twists not stabilizing 300 gr bullets. That's hogwash. My vote would be Hornady's 300 gr XTP. They shoot great in my Winchester 94. Every load manual has tried them and reported fine accuracy with the heavies too.
 

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I have a 76' vintage 444S,... and, as with most, I started with factory ammo, Hornady and Remington. All shot well from my micro groove (1 in 38" twist) rifle. That was a few decades ago. When I started reloading, and then casting, I went to a 300 grain cast lead boolit, at 4 thousandths over bore. Very accurate, very nice groups, and with the added boolit weight I can slow them down a bit and still retain adequate penetration, without the recoil.

Kudos, Baddag457,... sometimes the facts need to be repeated.
 
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I have a 76' vintage 444S,... and, as with most, I started with factory ammo, Hornady and Remington. All shot well from my micro groove (1 in 38" twist) rifle. That was a few decades ago. When I started reloading, and then casting, I went to a 300 grain cast lead boolit, at 4 thousandths over bore. Very accurate, very nice groups, and with the added boolit weight I can slow them down a bit and still retain adequate penetration, without the recoil.

Kudos, Baddag457,... sometimes the facts need to be repeated.
The difference is the faster velocities and added barrel length putting more RPM's into the spin. (y)
 

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Actually, I cut my barrel down to 16.25 inches around a decade ago.
Boolit performance has never been disappointing.
I ride horses in the mountains, and easy access to a scabbard held lever action is better with the shorter barrel.
 
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