Please Sign In

Please enter a valid username and password
  • Log in with Facebook
» Not a member? Take a moment to register
» Forgot Username or Password

Why Register?
Signing up could earn you gear (click here to learn how)! It also keeps offensive content off our site.

Hunting With Handguns: Taming the .44 Magnum

Recent Comments

Categories

Recent Posts

Archives

Syndicate

Google Reader or Homepage
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My AOL

The Gun Nuts
in your Inbox

Enter your email address to get our new post everyday.

August 15, 2011

Hunting With Handguns: Taming the .44 Magnum

By Phil Bourjaily

by Phil Bourjaily

After I eased into handgunnning and handgun hunting with a .357 magnum last year, I decided to move up to a .44 magnum this year – specifically the S&W 629 Stealth Hunter pictured here.

First trip to the range, I started out shooting .44 specials to get a feel for the gun. The .44 special in a heavy revolver like this one has no recoil whatsoever and is a lot of fun to shoot. However, I am hunting with .44 magnum ammo, so I loaded the gun with a full-power magnum cartridge, pulled the trigger, and immediately realized why it is you so often see nearly new .44 magnums for sale.

People think they will be fun to shoot, then they find out the .44 kicks. The kick isn’t horrendous, but it gave me a good enough whack on the heel of my hand that my groups grew bigger, not smaller, the longer my practice sessions lasted.

My first thought was just to go back to the .357. It has a lot less recoil and is effective at the close ranges I will shoot, but I rejected that as being too wimpy a solution, even for me.

Instead I changed out the hard rubber Hogue grip that came with the gun for a much softer Pachmayr Decelerator grip(38.98, lymanproducts.com), which takes just a few minutes to install with a screwdriver. And, I dug around in my boxes of stuff in the basement until I came up with a pair of nearly forgotten Past shooting gloves (34.99, battenfeldtechnologies.com) with a thick pad in the palm of the shooting hand. Honestly, I don’t even know why I had them but I’m glad I did, because they don’t make the left –handed ones any more.

The combination of the gloves and the new grip resulted in a major reduction in felt recoil. The .44 is still loud, it bucks, but it doesn’t hurt anymore. In the absence of pain my groups shrank right away. And, as I get more accustomed to shooting the 629, I can now manage it almost as well without the gloves. Currently my maximum off-hand range is about 25 yards (the distance at which I can hit a pie-plate consistently) but it’s only August and I’ve got plenty more time to practice before December.

If you are among those who finds that .44 you bought to be a handful, take heart. With enough padding you can calm it down and make it do your bidding.

Comments (57)

Top Rated
All Comments
from -Bob wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, a good set of grips makes all the difference. I regularly hunt with a .44 Mag. Dan Wesson. My Dad carries a .357 Ruger Blackhawk as his sidearm, which is positively rude to shoot when compared to my .44 Mag.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Oryx wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Odd bit of advice here, but since you instruct trapshooters and the like, it may help you.

My first "other than a .22" handgun was, of course, a 44 mag Super Blackhawk. Shortly I developed a flinch which was made worse by the long trigger pull.

What helped me was to imagine the shot coming from myself (my forehead to be exact)just skimming over the rear and front sights and then targetward. I don't know if I was disconnecting the trigger pull and the recoil, or taking the pistol out of the picture completely in this bit of mental charade, but it seemed to work for me.

Best of luck.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Sir Phil

250 Grain Cast .429 (Elmer Keith)

21.0 grains of 2400

I've tried hotter loads and heavier bullets, but after 35 years later I keep coming back to this load. I've found cast to be more accurate and I use straight wheel weights making it cheep to shoot. Wheel weights are free, just add powder, primer and a dab of lube, good to go!

73's!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Food for though :)

THINK OUT OF THE BOX!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

OOPS!

NICE PIECE OF EQUIPMENT PHIL!

44 Ruger Blackhawk has become an extra appendage, commonly known as my "POWER AXE"!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Harold wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, this is why I shoot a 41 magnum! It has somewhat less recoil than a 44mag of the same weight and you sacrifice only a miniscule amount of "thump" downrange. I really do think that the 41 is an excellent alternative to the 44. I also believe in soft grips for reasons that you found out!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from -Bob wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

We’ve always gotten good results with 24.0 grains of H110 behind a 240 gr. Sierra hollowpoint. The extra added bonus was that I could use the same round in my Marlin 1894S as with the handgun…a two-fer!

Has anyone yet tried the Hornady LEVERevolution rounds in .44 Mag? They look interesting. -Bob

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Oryx wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I wonder if those tips would make the bullet too long for a cylinder Bob.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, I doubt you would like either of my .44's. The old 3 screw Super Blackhawk has the orignal plow handle grips, very light trigger with action job, and barrel cut to 4 5/8". The 6 1/2 inch pinned and recessed M-29 has the Smith magnum grips but is not much kinder than the old Ruger. Regardless both will rock and roll shooting a max load of 2400 or 296 and a 265 gr. hard cast bullet (gives me a much improved meplat over the 240 gr. Keith). Both are accurate for long range but yet manageable for quick up close shots. I can't think of many situations where they are not adequate from bear defense to hunting. Perhaps the decades of shooting this pair has simply dulled my nervous system to the point of where their recoil and blast does not bother me.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

My Super Blackhawk got a pair of Pachmyer presentation grips shortly after I got it, as did my Single Six and Blackhawk, the latter two not because of recoil but so everything would feel the same. I currently shoot a Speer 300 gr. PSP in a warm load of either H110 or 296, can't remember without looking it up, but either way you know when it goes off, but then I'm looking for penetration and wallop at close range if necessary. Welcome to the family, hang in there!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago
from 99explorer wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I have an old S&W Model 29 with the original Goncalo Alves target grips on it that was a beast to shoot when I first got it.
I learned to adjust my grip and wore a pair of golf gloves at the range, but the most I could handle was two cylinders in one session.
With practice, I can now shoot it without flinching, and with heavy winter gloves, I don't even think about the recoil.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from vtbluegrass wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

The blast is the best part. I used the lighter Sierra 210gr hollow points and just about topped the cases off with H110 when I had my last 44, they were warm loads to say the least. I am between 44mags because I really didn't care for the scope mounting options on the Blackhawk I had. That S&W Stealth looks like a mighty pretty next choice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I've watched a many gloves like the one above ripped apart by 454's, I'll stick to my load. Warm enough for for range and big critters without worrying about keeping the frame screws tight, wearing & stripping the holes out over time!

Another Mag I would trade both my 44's for is the LAR Grizzly 45 Win Mag in good condition with muzzle break and the mags.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LAR_Grizzly_Win_Mag

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Oryx

I've been eying that bullet for some time now and thinking on loading it, you maybe right OAL just might be a problem???

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 1uglymutha wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

i have used both the 265 grain and the 225 grain hornady ftx bullets in two different rugers. as with any other reloading go with the manual, start low and work up. i've had fantastic results on paper with the 265 gr bullet even though hornady does not recommend them. they say this bullet should only be used in the .444. but,of course, i had to experiment. i used the hodgdon load data for 270 grain jacketed bullets, started low and worked up. my best accuracy (one holers) came at slightly under max. the .44 mag can be a very accurate cartridge when you find the right load. the recoil isn't so bad either after your hand goes numb. concentration in the face of heavy recoil is the key to accuracy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

1uglymutha

My pet load for my 444 Marlin is 265's and I've tried them in my 44 and it didn't like them, back to 250's!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

like harold said, try a .41. you paid $35 for half a glove?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

99explorer-Thats a nice gun you have. I'd still rather have a .44 lever phil.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

The recoil in a .44mag is just not pleasent to shoot for me. I have a WIN-94(Black Shadow)in .44mag. To me this cartridge makes more sense in a carbine. Easier to manage recoil, and shoot with more accuracy in that little 94 then a big handgun to me!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil,
I went to the S&W website and all they list is a 7 1/2" barreled 629. Your photo looks more like a 6" barrel. Also the site stated $1329 MSRP. I'm hoping much, much lower no way the gun's worth that much unless S&W thinks O'bama is after them. More info please.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I like the nice touch of the Aimpoint T-1 Micro. Very compact red dot sight, will do everything the Comp M2/3/4 do at a much smaller size. No, I don't own Aimpoint stock, they're a European company :)

I remember a gunwriter's rule with powerful handguns. At .44 Magnum or hot .45 Colt level power, the plow-handle single action grip is better because there is no hump to snag the web of your hand in, and the gun recoils freely, the muzzle goes smoothly up.

At .475 Linebaugh level and higher, that plow-handle grip which had allowed your gun to recoil smoothly upward could now potentially drive the front sight straight into your forehead.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil,

Sounds like you're on the right track. Stick with it. The more you shoot that .44 the more it will love you.
You probably should limit your expectations up front.

I began handgun hunting for deer last year. I started shooting a scoped Ruger SBH with Bisley grip in .44 mag. I think the Bisley is easier on the hand. I shot a nice buck out at 75 yards from a treestand using the front rail as a rest. He went 40 yards and plopped.

I found my gun liked 22.5 gr of H110 with a Hornady 240 grain XTP, and I shot that load all summer until I felt confident out to 100 yards. However, I decided 75 would be my max shooting distance.

Don't compromise on your expectations for distance prior to the time you're ready to hunt. By then you'll know what your skill level is and can set a limit.

Just keep shooting and good luck.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

i shot my .44 mag first time about 3 weeks ago?? full loads, had no issue with recoil...never had any issue with recoil from any gun. just hang on tight and squeeze the trigger, my bullet holes were touching at 25 and within a half inch at 50.

suck it up phil!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Sorry, that third line of my previous comment should have read "You probably should NOT limit your expectations up front."

(I hate it when that happens!)

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MReeder wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I've never been much of a handgun shooter, although I own a Dan Wesson .357 I've had for about 25 years and a 1911 Colt .45 ACP I talked my dad into buying for me with my Christmas money ($50 new)when I was 12 and had just discovered Jeff Cooper. Both are reasonably pleasant to shoot but I've never had reason to go bigger, since I don't hunt with a handgun.
I think what your story illustrates goes beyond handguns, though. What matters is felt, or perceived recoil, not actual recoil. A good recoil pad, properly made grips or stock, correct gun weight for the caliber, etc. make all the difference. So can good hearing protection. The other thing it illustrates is that despite the protestations of the hairy-chested set, no one shoots well when pulling the trigger results in immediate and noticable pain. You may think you're not flinching but groups don't lie. If you are indeed shooting any firearm that hurts to shoot but think you are not at least occasionally flinching, have someone else load the gun for you while you're not looking and hand it to you to shoot, mixing in the odd empty chamber. You will quite likely feel a little sheepish at least some of the time.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drew McClure wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

My arrow groups are tighter than my pistol groups, who knew that growing up watching "Dirty Harry" and "Jaws" would be so bad for the Great White and so good for the magnum revolver.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Hey Clay, I'm sure you're like the rest of us, with a lot going on, but I asked you to elaborate on your opinion regarding thumbhole stocks on a previous thread and you haven't uttered a peep. Did you lose your train of thought or did I not ask nicely enough? haha. As to the .454, a buddy of mine has one in an 8 3/8" Taurus Raging Bull which I have played with a bit. I was pleasantly surprised as to recoil. If some poor soul was to have one he was afraid of and didn't want my first born in exchange, I'd be very interested in helping him with that problem if I had the cash at hand.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ferber wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Personally, I've always felt rifles are the best choice (for hunting) in cartriges above .44 Mag. ballistics. Guns of that caliber and smaller are easier to carry and shoot accurately. For me the .454, for example, ain't fun to shoot and I just don't like the big weight, big bang, big kick.

I like the .44 Mag and use it sometimes hunting with both factory ammo and similar Keith bullet handloads mentioned by Clay Cooper, with success. I don't shoot it as well off-hand as I can with the .357 (Python) or my favorite--the .45 ACP. When I took the all-reserve national service pistol championship in the late 1960s I won that NMC event with a score in the low 290s. That hardball gun, like the other navy team match-conditioned pistols, grouped under 3 inches from the bench at 50 yards. I can't hold nearly that well anymore but the point I'm making centers around extreme accuracy in a handgun and the the experience needed to shoot accurately.

My Smith 629 shoots tight groups at 25 yards from the bench...but nothing like the magical groups reported by scratchgolfer72. I, like most serious shooters, can get half-inch groups at 50 yards...but using a rifle, of course. My Model 41 Smith match .22 will come close to half-inch groups but at 25 yards, not 50. Somebody tell me that a .44 Mag--or any handgun--will shoot half-inch groups at 50 yards!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from TED FORD wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Hell Phil,you've got the glove on the wrong hand.I think that was a problem for Michael Jackson too.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I'm sure the guys at the Hornady lab are scrambling with their micrometers now that they've read this thread...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from nelsol wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Done the .357, .41, and the .44 mag., and the .44 is just too much for me to shoot accurately after the first shot. So, I went to the 10mm Glock and Kimber. Spent $$ on the Glock converting to the Lone Wolf long slide with Burris Fast-fire II (and by the way Phil, this is your fault due to the last piece on the S&W .357 with Fast-Fire). Double Tap Ammo makes great hunting loads for the 10mm with a choice of 180 JHP, 200 HCFP, and 230 HCFP. Muzzle velocities range from around 1300 to 1420 fps. The Glock 20 and the Kimber Eclipse don't punish the shooter as much as the .44, but retain enough downrange energy to do the job. Plus, you have the quick follow-up shot capability without the double action trigger pull.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntenthusiest wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

You might also consider looking up Magnaport.com. They did a four port job on my S&W 629 Classic with the 8" barrel in 44Mag. The prices are reasonable and it helped tame the recoil. Plus, it increases resale value.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

nelsol, how did those Lone Wolf parts work out for you? I find their products innovative and probably improved over the Glock originals but have never used them.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from nelsol wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Ishawooa, the Lone Wolf parts have been nothing less than great. The LW 10mm barrel is a drop in on the original Glock 20 slide. Accuracy is better than the factory Glock barrel particularly when using the 200gr HCFP. I went a step further and spent the $$ for the LW 10mm long slide, and had the Burris FastFire II installed in the "Race" configuration (go to the Lone Wolf web site)which mounts the FastFire down low on the frame. Opted for the 20 pound recoil spring for the long slide since I chose the heavy loads for hunting. The heavy loads have cycled flawlessly through the LW long slide.
--Talk about having options.....I can carry the Glock 20 in its standard configuration with stock slide, night sites, and barrel, opt to drop in the 6" barrel, or go with the LW long slide with 6" barrel. Changing from from one slide to the other takes about 10-15 seconds. Hope this helps. I've been a 1911 guy since the late 70's, still am, but this Glock option has been great.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dasmith wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

My first .44 magnum was a S&W 29 with a 3 inch barrel. I put pachmyer gripper grips on it and had to settle on the .44 magnum 210gr Winchester Silver Tips as the full house 240 gr SWC turned my hand bright red after 3 shots and that was no fun. Did take a deer with it at about 30 yards. You can also use motorcycle gloves as they have padded palms.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chuck32571 wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

If your not hunting dangerous game why don't you just lessen the charge and use a lighter bullet.
I shoot Silhouette with a .44 Mag TC Contender and a load of 11 grains of Blue Dot with a 220 grain lead bullet that will knock down an 80 pound ram at 200 meters every time it's hit. There is a little recoil (Mainly because IHMSA rules do not allow your arms to touch your body for support.) but not enough to make you think twice before the next shot.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Tame... I didn't think it would need it but it did. The taming took: 1 bullseye trigger kit, 1 trip to Mt. Clemens, Mi. to see Larry Kelly's people at Mag-Na-Port( 2 port), anybody's 240gr JSP, JHP, Silhouette/FMJ and 22.9 gr.WIN296 my S & W 29 10 5/8". Over my chronograph right @ 1210fps(hdy240sil), no screamer but 4 shots under an inch @ 50 yds and the 5th opened it up to 1.5 inch(open sight). 265 gr. hdy grouped poorly, 200gr. Speer 22.9 gr. WIN296(my lumberjack or snag relief load)grouped well. The real suprise came from Win. 250 gr. BLACK TALONS as I almost broke the bank buying up the lot here in Hou.TX. grouped so well @100yds(it did recoil a bit more, not much). Good luck & follow the rules working up handloads !

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from saigonjohn wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I half severed my right thumb years ago and shooting my Dan Wesson 44 Mag was downright painful until I changed to a soft grip as well. I can hit a Clorox jug at 100 yards with all six shots, given a fencepost rest. 44 Specials for practice and carry, 44 Mags for hunting. In all honestly, the 44 Special HP loads kill very effectively at short range.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

You know, I'm glad to read this, Phil. In this age of .454 Casulls, .475 Linebaughs, and the big Smith & Wesson rounds, it is easy to forget that the .44 Magnum is still a very powerful cartridge from a handgun. The loudest gun I ever shot was a .50 AE and the hardest kicking was the .454, but the only one that actually hurt my hand was a 629 Smith in .44 Mag. If that makes no sense, all I can say is that grips and guns are all built differently, and so are shooters' hands.

You could try a .41 Magnum. It shoots flatter than a .44 and while I've never seen anything shot with one, as its ballistics exceed .44-40 from a rifle it should be enough to lower the boom on any deer or black bear with 3/4 the kick of a .44. Something to think about.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Biggest improvement I can think of to the M29 was when they quit boring at .410 and stamped the frame MOD 57.
I went to an 8 3/8 M57 in the late 70's. Haven't looked back since! Shoots VERY well. Recoil VERY manageable! Sports Pachmayr grips.
It is a shame the .41 Rem Mag was never given the recognition it so richly deserves.
Magnificant cartridge!

Bubba

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hansaskatoon wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I eased into the 44 Magnum with a Desert Eagle that, because of its weight and unique engineering, takes up some of that recoil. Plus, I believe that everyone should have at least one or two absurd guns (the Israelis used them predominantly to stop cars and trucks at check stations) in their collection...

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Todd Boudreau wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I have shot both a 150 lbs buck and a 385 lbs (dressed) black bear (not with dogs) with my iron sight Ruger Blackhawk single action .44. Both w/ 240 grain factory magnum loads. Both animals were within 30 yards. I enjoyed both hunts so much that I have put away my rifle during gun season and only use revolvers now. I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND PEOPLE TRY HAND GUNNING. It is pretty intense. You need to focus tremendously. I found it very gratifying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from gladysman wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Hi i had the same Problem,With my Handguns i have 2 Freedom Arms SIXGUNS,A 44mag and a 454 Casull,The 44 was not to bad,BUT NOT GOOD EITHER, But My 454 Casull was a Hand Beater,I Dreaded Shooting It,I Ride a Harley,And i Remembered that i had bought a pair of(HARLEY DAVIDSON MENS TORQUE FINGERLESS GEL GLOVES)THEY HAVE GEL IN THE PALM,AND MADE OF GOOD LEATHER,SO I PUT THEM ON AND THE 44mag WAS FUN to Shoot,I SHOT TO BOXS OF AMMO AND WAS EASY ON THE HANDS,AND THE 454 CASULL,WHICH BEFORE,1 ROUND WAS ALL I COULD STAND,BUT WITH THE GEL PALM GLOVES,I CAN SHOOT A BOX OF AMMO,AND HAVE FUN,BELIEVE ME THESE GLOVES ARE WELL WORTH THE MONEY,THEY ARE A LITTLE HIGH,I PAID $50 AT THE HARLEY SHOP,BUT EBAY HAS THEM FOR $30 TO $40,I BOUGHT A EXTRA PAIR ON EBAY AS A SPAIR,BELIEVE ME YOU WONT REGRET BUYING THESE GLOVES,THEY ARE THE BEST SHOOTING GLOVES I HAVE USED,GIVE THEM A TRY YOU WONT BE SORRY.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jhjimbo wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

i got my model 29 'classic hunter' in 1988. hunting deer in south east ohio with 240gr hard lead FP. they don't go far. i like Blue Dot but have tried them all. it took a long time with reduced hand loads to shoot 5" or less at 100yds open sights, off hand. the classic has the adjustable front sight and i think it's great. set it for the distance of expected shot (four settings 25,50,75,100) and no hold over. i will take a 100yd shot with confidence. the grips are the soft hogue and help absorb the recoil. for me the mod 29 .44 does it just right. hardly use my .357 blackhawk anymore.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I think the .41 failed commercially because it was touted as a viable law enforcement cartridge as well as a hunting one. like the .243, it was supposed to be a dual-purpose round, the answer to every question.

In the former, it was found to be too much gun. When you really think about it, the .41 had the wrong people endorsing it. Bill Jordan was a giant of a man (taller than Michael Jordan by 2 inches) and his big hands could wrap around and tame any gun. And of course, Elmer Keith was impervious to recoil. Once the .41 got in the hands of lawmen of ordinary size and constitution, it proved to be too much to handle. Make no mistake about it, the .41 is more powerful than either the 10mm Auto or the .40 S&W, and it doesn't come in recoil-soaking polymer-framed Glocks.

As a hunting round, it is OK, but most people who already have a .44 weren't buying it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from RES1956 wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

For hunting, I had an Uncle Mike's sling swivel stud installed on the bottom of the grip, in which i put a sling to form a loop. The loop wraps around the back of your neck and is adjusted to be tight when arms are extended holding the revolver. This is like shooting from a bench. It is amazing how steady you can hold the gun and since I had a Leupold 2-8 EER pistol scope on the Redhawk, it was necessary.
It is no problem to holster the gun with the sling wrapped around your neck when hunting.
If you don't want to drill and tap the bottom of the grip, take a soft 1" belt and put it around the back of your neck and the front of the grips and see how steady the sight picture is when the arms are extended and the sling is tight. It will really tighten up your groups.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Zermoid wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Is there any Hogue grip that wouldn't make a better trashcan liner than gun grip?
I bought a Used Ruger Redhawk a while back, came with a Mag-Na-Ported barrel and a Houge grip.

First problem was the Hogue grip did not cover the backstrap of the grip, second problem was it tended to open up in the rear, thus not only doing exactly diddly to reduce felt recoil but also pinching your hand in the process. I tried wrapping it with electrical tape, this eliminated the pinching but you still are fully aware that there is a 3/8 inch wide piece of steel being hammered into your hand with every shot.

I'm gonna be getting a Pachmeyer grip for it, but I can't chose whether I want a Presentation grip or the Decelerator version. Had a Presentation grip on my Dan Wesson and it was great for felt recoil reduction.

Thoughts?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Zermoid wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, BTW the decelerator grips are about $10 cheaper at http://www.grafs.com, actually almost anything is cheaper there than other places, it's almost like buying wholesale!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

O Garcia - I don't consider the .41 Rem Mag as a "failure", I see it more as "less successful". S&W actually still builds the M57, so there has to be SOME interest in the cartridge.
The BIGGEST problem I see, is the fact that it's a proprietary cartridge with no "milder" cartridge like the .44 Spl to practice with.
About all one can do is reload and load down for a "milder", "cheaper" practice round. If you're NOT a reloader, you MUST shoot "mag" rounds.
There IS a .41 Long Colt cartridge, but CANNOT be interchanged with the .41 Rem Mag. The case diameter's are VERY different.
The other BIG difference is "Dirty Harry"! You're pretty close on. People deciding to step up from the .357 Mag, weren't going halfway to the .41, it was .44 Rem Mag or "BUST!". I can remember seeing quite a few M29's still in the wooden case with a box of 50 cartridges missing 6 rounds! One cylinder was all it took to convince them the 4" and 6" bbls were NOT for the faint of heart! LOL!!
My 8 3/8" M57 is about a 1977-8 model. I bought it used. The presentation case fell apart from opening and closing and I finally tossed it. I still have the screw driver, brush and cleaning rod.
With a rest, I can keep all 6 rounds in a 8" paper plate at 75 yards. I'm too shaky to feel comfortable shooting beyond that! Each year, the "57" makes several trips to the woods. Some day, everything will fall in place.

Until then, "Viva la .41 Rem Mag!"

Bubba

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Storm Hall wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I will stick with my .44-40 thanks

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Bubba,
ironically, I read recently that the cartridge as envisioned by Jordan, Keith and Skeeter Skelton was to have had a performance comparable to today's .40 S&W. Something along the tune of 800 fps.

The factories overdid it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, Garcia, If I could have stoped her my wife would have bought me a M 57 as 185-220 gr. bullets would be fine with me. Winchester 10mm Norma Auto 175 gr. ST 1290fps, .41 RemMag 175 gr. ST 1250, even the .38-40 Win. 180gr. JSP 1160fps is really not to far off the 1200FPS mark. Winchester loads the 10mm faster...why ? Maybe the aluminum jacket couldn't take the speed ? Who knows, My G20 gets my nod for lt.wght. magnum controlable power, not that it takes more to get the job done but 15rds in the mag is pretty nice storage. The .41 RemMag is a classic.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, Garcia, If I could have stoped her my wife would have bought me a M 57 as 185-220 gr. bullets would be fine with me. Winchester 10mm Norma Auto 175 gr. ST 1290fps, .41 RemMag 175 gr. ST 1250, even the .38-40 Win. 180gr. JSP 1160fps is really not to far off the 1200FPS mark. Winchester loads the 10mm faster...why ? Maybe the aluminum jacket couldn't take the speed ? Who knows, My G20 gets my nod for lt.wght. magnum controlable power, not that it takes more to get the job done but 15rds in the mag is pretty nice storage. The .41 RemMag is a classic.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 33 weeks ago

I have the S&W Alaska Backpacker -- the super lightweight .44 Mag. I didn't even attempt to fire it until I replaced the grips with the larger, softer ones from the Model 500 and purchased a pair of shooting gloves. I was able to fire 17 rounds before crying "Uncle!". By then my hand was complaining and my new gloves were split. I carry it as a backup in a thigh holster. I figure the only time I'll use it is in an extremely dangerous situation when the last thing on my mind will be recoil.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 2 years 33 weeks ago

Might try a single action like the Blackhawk/Super Blackhawk ... or a Freedom Arms, especially with a Bisley type grip. Controllable but much more pleasant to shoot. I started with a Ruger Super Redhawk in .454 Cas and then went to a Freedom Arms 83. Huge difference. Happily sold the Ruger.

I recently picked up a S&W 629 Performance Center with a 2-5/8" barrel with two finger wood grip. It's meant for protection in the wild so went with a double action. If I wanted a pure hunting revolver I would go with a single action. It is accurate enough for hunting - working up WFN hardcast lead loads - it's going to take some time because of the recoil. I never had that problem with the much more powerful Freedom Arms. Just before I had to sell it I shot off 200 rounds in one day.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Lloyd wrote 1 year 44 weeks ago

I've just encountered this ( June 2012), but had seen a segment on the Gun Nuts TV program on Phil using a .357 magnum on his first handgun deer. My thought immediately was that beginning deer hunting with such a small gun ( compared to .. you name .44 magnum on up) was a timid way to start. I am now waiting for a handgun permit thinking much of how I want to begin. My thinking now, after the TV show and this article is that I too will ease into what I use. Thank you for the good advice given gently.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from ishawooa wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, I doubt you would like either of my .44's. The old 3 screw Super Blackhawk has the orignal plow handle grips, very light trigger with action job, and barrel cut to 4 5/8". The 6 1/2 inch pinned and recessed M-29 has the Smith magnum grips but is not much kinder than the old Ruger. Regardless both will rock and roll shooting a max load of 2400 or 296 and a 265 gr. hard cast bullet (gives me a much improved meplat over the 240 gr. Keith). Both are accurate for long range but yet manageable for quick up close shots. I can't think of many situations where they are not adequate from bear defense to hunting. Perhaps the decades of shooting this pair has simply dulled my nervous system to the point of where their recoil and blast does not bother me.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Harold wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, this is why I shoot a 41 magnum! It has somewhat less recoil than a 44mag of the same weight and you sacrifice only a miniscule amount of "thump" downrange. I really do think that the 41 is an excellent alternative to the 44. I also believe in soft grips for reasons that you found out!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I'm sure the guys at the Hornady lab are scrambling with their micrometers now that they've read this thread...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from vtbluegrass wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

The blast is the best part. I used the lighter Sierra 210gr hollow points and just about topped the cases off with H110 when I had my last 44, they were warm loads to say the least. I am between 44mags because I really didn't care for the scope mounting options on the Blackhawk I had. That S&W Stealth looks like a mighty pretty next choice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from -Bob wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil, a good set of grips makes all the difference. I regularly hunt with a .44 Mag. Dan Wesson. My Dad carries a .357 Ruger Blackhawk as his sidearm, which is positively rude to shoot when compared to my .44 Mag.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from -Bob wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

We’ve always gotten good results with 24.0 grains of H110 behind a 240 gr. Sierra hollowpoint. The extra added bonus was that I could use the same round in my Marlin 1894S as with the handgun…a two-fer!

Has anyone yet tried the Hornady LEVERevolution rounds in .44 Mag? They look interesting. -Bob

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

The recoil in a .44mag is just not pleasent to shoot for me. I have a WIN-94(Black Shadow)in .44mag. To me this cartridge makes more sense in a carbine. Easier to manage recoil, and shoot with more accuracy in that little 94 then a big handgun to me!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

My Super Blackhawk got a pair of Pachmyer presentation grips shortly after I got it, as did my Single Six and Blackhawk, the latter two not because of recoil but so everything would feel the same. I currently shoot a Speer 300 gr. PSP in a warm load of either H110 or 296, can't remember without looking it up, but either way you know when it goes off, but then I'm looking for penetration and wallop at close range if necessary. Welcome to the family, hang in there!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago
from 99explorer wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I have an old S&W Model 29 with the original Goncalo Alves target grips on it that was a beast to shoot when I first got it.
I learned to adjust my grip and wore a pair of golf gloves at the range, but the most I could handle was two cylinders in one session.
With practice, I can now shoot it without flinching, and with heavy winter gloves, I don't even think about the recoil.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Sir Phil

250 Grain Cast .429 (Elmer Keith)

21.0 grains of 2400

I've tried hotter loads and heavier bullets, but after 35 years later I keep coming back to this load. I've found cast to be more accurate and I use straight wheel weights making it cheep to shoot. Wheel weights are free, just add powder, primer and a dab of lube, good to go!

73's!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Food for though :)

THINK OUT OF THE BOX!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

OOPS!

NICE PIECE OF EQUIPMENT PHIL!

44 Ruger Blackhawk has become an extra appendage, commonly known as my "POWER AXE"!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

i shot my .44 mag first time about 3 weeks ago?? full loads, had no issue with recoil...never had any issue with recoil from any gun. just hang on tight and squeeze the trigger, my bullet holes were touching at 25 and within a half inch at 50.

suck it up phil!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MReeder wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I've never been much of a handgun shooter, although I own a Dan Wesson .357 I've had for about 25 years and a 1911 Colt .45 ACP I talked my dad into buying for me with my Christmas money ($50 new)when I was 12 and had just discovered Jeff Cooper. Both are reasonably pleasant to shoot but I've never had reason to go bigger, since I don't hunt with a handgun.
I think what your story illustrates goes beyond handguns, though. What matters is felt, or perceived recoil, not actual recoil. A good recoil pad, properly made grips or stock, correct gun weight for the caliber, etc. make all the difference. So can good hearing protection. The other thing it illustrates is that despite the protestations of the hairy-chested set, no one shoots well when pulling the trigger results in immediate and noticable pain. You may think you're not flinching but groups don't lie. If you are indeed shooting any firearm that hurts to shoot but think you are not at least occasionally flinching, have someone else load the gun for you while you're not looking and hand it to you to shoot, mixing in the odd empty chamber. You will quite likely feel a little sheepish at least some of the time.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Oryx wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Odd bit of advice here, but since you instruct trapshooters and the like, it may help you.

My first "other than a .22" handgun was, of course, a 44 mag Super Blackhawk. Shortly I developed a flinch which was made worse by the long trigger pull.

What helped me was to imagine the shot coming from myself (my forehead to be exact)just skimming over the rear and front sights and then targetward. I don't know if I was disconnecting the trigger pull and the recoil, or taking the pistol out of the picture completely in this bit of mental charade, but it seemed to work for me.

Best of luck.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 2 years 33 weeks ago

Might try a single action like the Blackhawk/Super Blackhawk ... or a Freedom Arms, especially with a Bisley type grip. Controllable but much more pleasant to shoot. I started with a Ruger Super Redhawk in .454 Cas and then went to a Freedom Arms 83. Huge difference. Happily sold the Ruger.

I recently picked up a S&W 629 Performance Center with a 2-5/8" barrel with two finger wood grip. It's meant for protection in the wild so went with a double action. If I wanted a pure hunting revolver I would go with a single action. It is accurate enough for hunting - working up WFN hardcast lead loads - it's going to take some time because of the recoil. I never had that problem with the much more powerful Freedom Arms. Just before I had to sell it I shot off 200 rounds in one day.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil,
I went to the S&W website and all they list is a 7 1/2" barreled 629. Your photo looks more like a 6" barrel. Also the site stated $1329 MSRP. I'm hoping much, much lower no way the gun's worth that much unless S&W thinks O'bama is after them. More info please.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

nelsol, how did those Lone Wolf parts work out for you? I find their products innovative and probably improved over the Glock originals but have never used them.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

like harold said, try a .41. you paid $35 for half a glove?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 33 weeks ago

I have the S&W Alaska Backpacker -- the super lightweight .44 Mag. I didn't even attempt to fire it until I replaced the grips with the larger, softer ones from the Model 500 and purchased a pair of shooting gloves. I was able to fire 17 rounds before crying "Uncle!". By then my hand was complaining and my new gloves were split. I carry it as a backup in a thigh holster. I figure the only time I'll use it is in an extremely dangerous situation when the last thing on my mind will be recoil.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

You know, I'm glad to read this, Phil. In this age of .454 Casulls, .475 Linebaughs, and the big Smith & Wesson rounds, it is easy to forget that the .44 Magnum is still a very powerful cartridge from a handgun. The loudest gun I ever shot was a .50 AE and the hardest kicking was the .454, but the only one that actually hurt my hand was a 629 Smith in .44 Mag. If that makes no sense, all I can say is that grips and guns are all built differently, and so are shooters' hands.

You could try a .41 Magnum. It shoots flatter than a .44 and while I've never seen anything shot with one, as its ballistics exceed .44-40 from a rifle it should be enough to lower the boom on any deer or black bear with 3/4 the kick of a .44. Something to think about.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Zermoid wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Is there any Hogue grip that wouldn't make a better trashcan liner than gun grip?
I bought a Used Ruger Redhawk a while back, came with a Mag-Na-Ported barrel and a Houge grip.

First problem was the Hogue grip did not cover the backstrap of the grip, second problem was it tended to open up in the rear, thus not only doing exactly diddly to reduce felt recoil but also pinching your hand in the process. I tried wrapping it with electrical tape, this eliminated the pinching but you still are fully aware that there is a 3/8 inch wide piece of steel being hammered into your hand with every shot.

I'm gonna be getting a Pachmeyer grip for it, but I can't chose whether I want a Presentation grip or the Decelerator version. Had a Presentation grip on my Dan Wesson and it was great for felt recoil reduction.

Thoughts?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Zermoid wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, BTW the decelerator grips are about $10 cheaper at http://www.grafs.com, actually almost anything is cheaper there than other places, it's almost like buying wholesale!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 007 wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Hey Clay, I'm sure you're like the rest of us, with a lot going on, but I asked you to elaborate on your opinion regarding thumbhole stocks on a previous thread and you haven't uttered a peep. Did you lose your train of thought or did I not ask nicely enough? haha. As to the .454, a buddy of mine has one in an 8 3/8" Taurus Raging Bull which I have played with a bit. I was pleasantly surprised as to recoil. If some poor soul was to have one he was afraid of and didn't want my first born in exchange, I'd be very interested in helping him with that problem if I had the cash at hand.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ferber wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Personally, I've always felt rifles are the best choice (for hunting) in cartriges above .44 Mag. ballistics. Guns of that caliber and smaller are easier to carry and shoot accurately. For me the .454, for example, ain't fun to shoot and I just don't like the big weight, big bang, big kick.

I like the .44 Mag and use it sometimes hunting with both factory ammo and similar Keith bullet handloads mentioned by Clay Cooper, with success. I don't shoot it as well off-hand as I can with the .357 (Python) or my favorite--the .45 ACP. When I took the all-reserve national service pistol championship in the late 1960s I won that NMC event with a score in the low 290s. That hardball gun, like the other navy team match-conditioned pistols, grouped under 3 inches from the bench at 50 yards. I can't hold nearly that well anymore but the point I'm making centers around extreme accuracy in a handgun and the the experience needed to shoot accurately.

My Smith 629 shoots tight groups at 25 yards from the bench...but nothing like the magical groups reported by scratchgolfer72. I, like most serious shooters, can get half-inch groups at 50 yards...but using a rifle, of course. My Model 41 Smith match .22 will come close to half-inch groups but at 25 yards, not 50. Somebody tell me that a .44 Mag--or any handgun--will shoot half-inch groups at 50 yards!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from nelsol wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Done the .357, .41, and the .44 mag., and the .44 is just too much for me to shoot accurately after the first shot. So, I went to the 10mm Glock and Kimber. Spent $$ on the Glock converting to the Lone Wolf long slide with Burris Fast-fire II (and by the way Phil, this is your fault due to the last piece on the S&W .357 with Fast-Fire). Double Tap Ammo makes great hunting loads for the 10mm with a choice of 180 JHP, 200 HCFP, and 230 HCFP. Muzzle velocities range from around 1300 to 1420 fps. The Glock 20 and the Kimber Eclipse don't punish the shooter as much as the .44, but retain enough downrange energy to do the job. Plus, you have the quick follow-up shot capability without the double action trigger pull.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from nelsol wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Ishawooa, the Lone Wolf parts have been nothing less than great. The LW 10mm barrel is a drop in on the original Glock 20 slide. Accuracy is better than the factory Glock barrel particularly when using the 200gr HCFP. I went a step further and spent the $$ for the LW 10mm long slide, and had the Burris FastFire II installed in the "Race" configuration (go to the Lone Wolf web site)which mounts the FastFire down low on the frame. Opted for the 20 pound recoil spring for the long slide since I chose the heavy loads for hunting. The heavy loads have cycled flawlessly through the LW long slide.
--Talk about having options.....I can carry the Glock 20 in its standard configuration with stock slide, night sites, and barrel, opt to drop in the 6" barrel, or go with the LW long slide with 6" barrel. Changing from from one slide to the other takes about 10-15 seconds. Hope this helps. I've been a 1911 guy since the late 70's, still am, but this Glock option has been great.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntenthusiest wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

You might also consider looking up Magnaport.com. They did a four port job on my S&W 629 Classic with the 8" barrel in 44Mag. The prices are reasonable and it helped tame the recoil. Plus, it increases resale value.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from saigonjohn wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I half severed my right thumb years ago and shooting my Dan Wesson 44 Mag was downright painful until I changed to a soft grip as well. I can hit a Clorox jug at 100 yards with all six shots, given a fencepost rest. 44 Specials for practice and carry, 44 Mags for hunting. In all honestly, the 44 Special HP loads kill very effectively at short range.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Biggest improvement I can think of to the M29 was when they quit boring at .410 and stamped the frame MOD 57.
I went to an 8 3/8 M57 in the late 70's. Haven't looked back since! Shoots VERY well. Recoil VERY manageable! Sports Pachmayr grips.
It is a shame the .41 Rem Mag was never given the recognition it so richly deserves.
Magnificant cartridge!

Bubba

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

O Garcia - I don't consider the .41 Rem Mag as a "failure", I see it more as "less successful". S&W actually still builds the M57, so there has to be SOME interest in the cartridge.
The BIGGEST problem I see, is the fact that it's a proprietary cartridge with no "milder" cartridge like the .44 Spl to practice with.
About all one can do is reload and load down for a "milder", "cheaper" practice round. If you're NOT a reloader, you MUST shoot "mag" rounds.
There IS a .41 Long Colt cartridge, but CANNOT be interchanged with the .41 Rem Mag. The case diameter's are VERY different.
The other BIG difference is "Dirty Harry"! You're pretty close on. People deciding to step up from the .357 Mag, weren't going halfway to the .41, it was .44 Rem Mag or "BUST!". I can remember seeing quite a few M29's still in the wooden case with a box of 50 cartridges missing 6 rounds! One cylinder was all it took to convince them the 4" and 6" bbls were NOT for the faint of heart! LOL!!
My 8 3/8" M57 is about a 1977-8 model. I bought it used. The presentation case fell apart from opening and closing and I finally tossed it. I still have the screw driver, brush and cleaning rod.
With a rest, I can keep all 6 rounds in a 8" paper plate at 75 yards. I'm too shaky to feel comfortable shooting beyond that! Each year, the "57" makes several trips to the woods. Some day, everything will fall in place.

Until then, "Viva la .41 Rem Mag!"

Bubba

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I like the nice touch of the Aimpoint T-1 Micro. Very compact red dot sight, will do everything the Comp M2/3/4 do at a much smaller size. No, I don't own Aimpoint stock, they're a European company :)

I remember a gunwriter's rule with powerful handguns. At .44 Magnum or hot .45 Colt level power, the plow-handle single action grip is better because there is no hump to snag the web of your hand in, and the gun recoils freely, the muzzle goes smoothly up.

At .475 Linebaugh level and higher, that plow-handle grip which had allowed your gun to recoil smoothly upward could now potentially drive the front sight straight into your forehead.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I think the .41 failed commercially because it was touted as a viable law enforcement cartridge as well as a hunting one. like the .243, it was supposed to be a dual-purpose round, the answer to every question.

In the former, it was found to be too much gun. When you really think about it, the .41 had the wrong people endorsing it. Bill Jordan was a giant of a man (taller than Michael Jordan by 2 inches) and his big hands could wrap around and tame any gun. And of course, Elmer Keith was impervious to recoil. Once the .41 got in the hands of lawmen of ordinary size and constitution, it proved to be too much to handle. Make no mistake about it, the .41 is more powerful than either the 10mm Auto or the .40 S&W, and it doesn't come in recoil-soaking polymer-framed Glocks.

As a hunting round, it is OK, but most people who already have a .44 weren't buying it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Bubba,
ironically, I read recently that the cartridge as envisioned by Jordan, Keith and Skeeter Skelton was to have had a performance comparable to today's .40 S&W. Something along the tune of 800 fps.

The factories overdid it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Storm Hall wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I will stick with my .44-40 thanks

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drew McClure wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

My arrow groups are tighter than my pistol groups, who knew that growing up watching "Dirty Harry" and "Jaws" would be so bad for the Great White and so good for the magnum revolver.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 1uglymutha wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

i have used both the 265 grain and the 225 grain hornady ftx bullets in two different rugers. as with any other reloading go with the manual, start low and work up. i've had fantastic results on paper with the 265 gr bullet even though hornady does not recommend them. they say this bullet should only be used in the .444. but,of course, i had to experiment. i used the hodgdon load data for 270 grain jacketed bullets, started low and worked up. my best accuracy (one holers) came at slightly under max. the .44 mag can be a very accurate cartridge when you find the right load. the recoil isn't so bad either after your hand goes numb. concentration in the face of heavy recoil is the key to accuracy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Tame... I didn't think it would need it but it did. The taming took: 1 bullseye trigger kit, 1 trip to Mt. Clemens, Mi. to see Larry Kelly's people at Mag-Na-Port( 2 port), anybody's 240gr JSP, JHP, Silhouette/FMJ and 22.9 gr.WIN296 my S & W 29 10 5/8". Over my chronograph right @ 1210fps(hdy240sil), no screamer but 4 shots under an inch @ 50 yds and the 5th opened it up to 1.5 inch(open sight). 265 gr. hdy grouped poorly, 200gr. Speer 22.9 gr. WIN296(my lumberjack or snag relief load)grouped well. The real suprise came from Win. 250 gr. BLACK TALONS as I almost broke the bank buying up the lot here in Hou.TX. grouped so well @100yds(it did recoil a bit more, not much). Good luck & follow the rules working up handloads !

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, Garcia, If I could have stoped her my wife would have bought me a M 57 as 185-220 gr. bullets would be fine with me. Winchester 10mm Norma Auto 175 gr. ST 1290fps, .41 RemMag 175 gr. ST 1250, even the .38-40 Win. 180gr. JSP 1160fps is really not to far off the 1200FPS mark. Winchester loads the 10mm faster...why ? Maybe the aluminum jacket couldn't take the speed ? Who knows, My G20 gets my nod for lt.wght. magnum controlable power, not that it takes more to get the job done but 15rds in the mag is pretty nice storage. The .41 RemMag is a classic.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtownley wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Oh, Garcia, If I could have stoped her my wife would have bought me a M 57 as 185-220 gr. bullets would be fine with me. Winchester 10mm Norma Auto 175 gr. ST 1290fps, .41 RemMag 175 gr. ST 1250, even the .38-40 Win. 180gr. JSP 1160fps is really not to far off the 1200FPS mark. Winchester loads the 10mm faster...why ? Maybe the aluminum jacket couldn't take the speed ? Who knows, My G20 gets my nod for lt.wght. magnum controlable power, not that it takes more to get the job done but 15rds in the mag is pretty nice storage. The .41 RemMag is a classic.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dasmith wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

My first .44 magnum was a S&W 29 with a 3 inch barrel. I put pachmyer gripper grips on it and had to settle on the .44 magnum 210gr Winchester Silver Tips as the full house 240 gr SWC turned my hand bright red after 3 shots and that was no fun. Did take a deer with it at about 30 yards. You can also use motorcycle gloves as they have padded palms.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I've watched a many gloves like the one above ripped apart by 454's, I'll stick to my load. Warm enough for for range and big critters without worrying about keeping the frame screws tight, wearing & stripping the holes out over time!

Another Mag I would trade both my 44's for is the LAR Grizzly 45 Win Mag in good condition with muzzle break and the mags.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LAR_Grizzly_Win_Mag

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Oryx

I've been eying that bullet for some time now and thinking on loading it, you maybe right OAL just might be a problem???

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

1uglymutha

My pet load for my 444 Marlin is 265's and I've tried them in my 44 and it didn't like them, back to 250's!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from TED FORD wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Hell Phil,you've got the glove on the wrong hand.I think that was a problem for Michael Jackson too.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

99explorer-Thats a nice gun you have. I'd still rather have a .44 lever phil.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from gladysman wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

Hi i had the same Problem,With my Handguns i have 2 Freedom Arms SIXGUNS,A 44mag and a 454 Casull,The 44 was not to bad,BUT NOT GOOD EITHER, But My 454 Casull was a Hand Beater,I Dreaded Shooting It,I Ride a Harley,And i Remembered that i had bought a pair of(HARLEY DAVIDSON MENS TORQUE FINGERLESS GEL GLOVES)THEY HAVE GEL IN THE PALM,AND MADE OF GOOD LEATHER,SO I PUT THEM ON AND THE 44mag WAS FUN to Shoot,I SHOT TO BOXS OF AMMO AND WAS EASY ON THE HANDS,AND THE 454 CASULL,WHICH BEFORE,1 ROUND WAS ALL I COULD STAND,BUT WITH THE GEL PALM GLOVES,I CAN SHOOT A BOX OF AMMO,AND HAVE FUN,BELIEVE ME THESE GLOVES ARE WELL WORTH THE MONEY,THEY ARE A LITTLE HIGH,I PAID $50 AT THE HARLEY SHOP,BUT EBAY HAS THEM FOR $30 TO $40,I BOUGHT A EXTRA PAIR ON EBAY AS A SPAIR,BELIEVE ME YOU WONT REGRET BUYING THESE GLOVES,THEY ARE THE BEST SHOOTING GLOVES I HAVE USED,GIVE THEM A TRY YOU WONT BE SORRY.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from RES1956 wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

For hunting, I had an Uncle Mike's sling swivel stud installed on the bottom of the grip, in which i put a sling to form a loop. The loop wraps around the back of your neck and is adjusted to be tight when arms are extended holding the revolver. This is like shooting from a bench. It is amazing how steady you can hold the gun and since I had a Leupold 2-8 EER pistol scope on the Redhawk, it was necessary.
It is no problem to holster the gun with the sling wrapped around your neck when hunting.
If you don't want to drill and tap the bottom of the grip, take a soft 1" belt and put it around the back of your neck and the front of the grips and see how steady the sight picture is when the arms are extended and the sling is tight. It will really tighten up your groups.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jhjimbo wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

i got my model 29 'classic hunter' in 1988. hunting deer in south east ohio with 240gr hard lead FP. they don't go far. i like Blue Dot but have tried them all. it took a long time with reduced hand loads to shoot 5" or less at 100yds open sights, off hand. the classic has the adjustable front sight and i think it's great. set it for the distance of expected shot (four settings 25,50,75,100) and no hold over. i will take a 100yd shot with confidence. the grips are the soft hogue and help absorb the recoil. for me the mod 29 .44 does it just right. hardly use my .357 blackhawk anymore.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Phil,

Sounds like you're on the right track. Stick with it. The more you shoot that .44 the more it will love you.
You probably should limit your expectations up front.

I began handgun hunting for deer last year. I started shooting a scoped Ruger SBH with Bisley grip in .44 mag. I think the Bisley is easier on the hand. I shot a nice buck out at 75 yards from a treestand using the front rail as a rest. He went 40 yards and plopped.

I found my gun liked 22.5 gr of H110 with a Hornady 240 grain XTP, and I shot that load all summer until I felt confident out to 100 yards. However, I decided 75 would be my max shooting distance.

Don't compromise on your expectations for distance prior to the time you're ready to hunt. By then you'll know what your skill level is and can set a limit.

Just keep shooting and good luck.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

Sorry, that third line of my previous comment should have read "You probably should NOT limit your expectations up front."

(I hate it when that happens!)

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Oryx wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I wonder if those tips would make the bullet too long for a cylinder Bob.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hansaskatoon wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I eased into the 44 Magnum with a Desert Eagle that, because of its weight and unique engineering, takes up some of that recoil. Plus, I believe that everyone should have at least one or two absurd guns (the Israelis used them predominantly to stop cars and trucks at check stations) in their collection...

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chuck32571 wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

If your not hunting dangerous game why don't you just lessen the charge and use a lighter bullet.
I shoot Silhouette with a .44 Mag TC Contender and a load of 11 grains of Blue Dot with a 220 grain lead bullet that will knock down an 80 pound ram at 200 meters every time it's hit. There is a little recoil (Mainly because IHMSA rules do not allow your arms to touch your body for support.) but not enough to make you think twice before the next shot.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Todd Boudreau wrote 2 years 34 weeks ago

I have shot both a 150 lbs buck and a 385 lbs (dressed) black bear (not with dogs) with my iron sight Ruger Blackhawk single action .44. Both w/ 240 grain factory magnum loads. Both animals were within 30 yards. I enjoyed both hunts so much that I have put away my rifle during gun season and only use revolvers now. I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND PEOPLE TRY HAND GUNNING. It is pretty intense. You need to focus tremendously. I found it very gratifying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Lloyd wrote 1 year 44 weeks ago

I've just encountered this ( June 2012), but had seen a segment on the Gun Nuts TV program on Phil using a .357 magnum on his first handgun deer. My thought immediately was that beginning deer hunting with such a small gun ( compared to .. you name .44 magnum on up) was a timid way to start. I am now waiting for a handgun permit thinking much of how I want to begin. My thinking now, after the TV show and this article is that I too will ease into what I use. Thank you for the good advice given gently.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

bmxbiz-fs