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44 MAG Favorite loads?

8578 Views 66 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Black Prince
No 44 Mag threads going. Heres one. Who loads for the 44? What is the load? My favorite load is with a 300 gr cast lead bullet.

FC Brass
Federal LP Primers.
18.0 gr 2400 Powder
Lyman mould 429265(?) GC 300 gr
1.700 OAL
Heavy Crimp
Gravity Ejection of cases!

10 rnd avg. 1401 fps / 1308 fpe
Avg Deviation 14 fps (extreme 54 fps)
7-1/2" BBL (SBH)

This is 6 rounds of it at 50 yds. Sandbagged at the bench just to see what it was capable of, and sighting in purposes. I was trying for target zero, so POA was 6 O'Clock and when it came back like this I said good enough and didnt fiddle with it! I probably dont need 1400 fps so I may just trim this load back to 1250 or so

For reference purposes only! It may work for me but you and your gun may be in trouble if you try this load without working it up slowly like you should. Safety first!

Aint 44's Grand?! :cannon:


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Well Ed, I'm new to the forum but I've been loading the 44 since 1970. Early on, I found out that Elmer Keith knew what he was saying about the 40 & 4, so I followed his advice. I've shot everything you can shoot in a 44 and I've shot about every thing out there that is chambered for it.

I use and have used since 1970, a S & W Model 29 6 1/2 barrel 44 but I also owned a 8 3/8 inch Mod. 29 for several years too. I shoot Keith's 250 grain cast bullet and 22 grains of 2400 powder although, since Alliant took over Hercules powder, I've had to cut it back to 21.3 grains because the newer Alliant powder burns slightly fasted that the oloder Hercules 2400.

I've shot whitetail and mule deer with it and got one shot kills. I've killed two turkeys and same result.

I once shot 25 grains of WW 296 behind the Keith 250 grain bullet and it was the absolute most accurate load I've ever used but after about 200 rounds, it had started to flame cut the top strap so I went back to my 2400 loads.

There is no telling how many ten's of thousands of rounds I've shot out of that Smith. One summer, the city dug up about two miles of old lead pipe. I was on the Sherrif's Department then and the city cops and the SO got all of that pipe to cast bullets.

I had exactly one ton of pure lead pipe and another 500 pounds of tin and antimony in the form of linotype in my garage. I cast all of it and shot it in about four months. Every tire shop in four counties knew me because I'd make the rounds every month and get all their old wheel weights to make bullets.

I shot the heavier bullets for the 44 in my Contender until I sold it. Sold the 300 grain mould too. Keith's 250 grain bullet cast hard of linotype and 22 grains of 2400 will kill anything I need to kill. The load is about all I shoot now having discovered there are few, if any, loads better for the 44 mag.
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70,000 rounds you say? Well, it might have taken me six months to shoot it all up unless I was practicing for something special. But I averaged shooting 10,000 rounds a month back then. But understand, all of it was not 44's. I shot 2700 bullseye matches in three states and in those matches you have to shoot 22, any centerfire (and I used a Model 52 S & W Master for that leg of the match) and of course, 45 Auto. I dang near wore out a Dillion progressive press loading 45 ACP's. I'd start loading on Wednesday night out of a 5 gallon bucket of cast bullets and when I got set up, I took out primers 1000 at one time. Usually by Friday night, I'd have enough ammo to last me over the weekend.

I also shot the 45 auto "combat " matches that were all the rage back then and had a complete range set up behind my house in an old dirt pit that was on some of the land I owned at the time. Great place for a range. Had 20 foot tall clay banks on three sides of it! On weekends when I didn't go to a match somewhere, there would be about 20 local shooters show up at my range and we'd blast away all day. That range grew into what is now the NRA Certified Pine Belt Rifle and Pistol Club Range and I was the first president of it.

Dang, those were the good old days! I had several 3/8 inch and 1/2 inch steel plates of various diameters hanging at various distances from 50 to 300 yards and we'd shoot them so much, they'd get concave and then I'd turn them around and shoot them until they'd get concave on that side. Back then, I was 10 feet tall and bullet proof. Now a days, I just a wore out old fart but I have some dang good memories and even a couple of trophies or six.

Today, I shoot 5200 grain balls out of a 150 caliber cannon. Now that is a hoot! Dang near as much fun as shooting a 44. And just a little "Did you know." Hanging over the firing line at the old range behind my house was a sign that said " If you ain't a shooter, you ain't schmitt. And if you ain't a 44 shooter, jiss doan tell anybody unless you wanna fat lip! " Heck, I didn't know anybody that didn't have at least one 44 and at that time, I had three! Course I also had three 45 auto's and two Ron Power custom combat revolvers and . . .well, I was into it let's say.

I had a shooting/loading buddy that owned a welding shop. We used to take all of the wheel weights and whatever else we could scrounge up or collected that week and put them in a big steel pan and turn a rosebud on them. Man you could melt down a 5 gallon bucket of wheel weights and pour them up in one pound ingots in about 15 minutes. Then we'd get three 20 pound bottom pour pots going ( I still have one of them) so we could keep at least one melting all the time. Our only trouble was keeping our moulds cool enough so we wouldn't cast frosted bullets. Dang, I can still smell that place. It smelled like a shooters place because we had an indoor range in there and we used a bullet catcher we welded up in the shop that worked great. All the city cops used to come by at lunch or at shift change and shoot with us. man. Those were the days..
Sorry to bore you with alla that but when I get to thinking about 44's and casting and such, well . . . I guess I get carried away. All of those boys have gone on now and more's the pity because there wasn't a finer bunch anywhere.
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Well now Ed, I'm talking all of this happened 30 years ago in south Mississippi in the little town of Laurel. Although I can shoot out back now, I don't do it much because I can't see the sights on my handguns anymore. My right eye is about gone and of course, it's my dominant eye. But I can still manage to hit an X every now and then shooting with that dang left eye.

Back in the days when I was doing all of that shooting, I had what was called a 10 ring wobble. That means that I did not woble out of the 10 ring and almost anytime the sear broke, it was gonna be a 10. And in those days, I could SEE the dang X at 25 yards and I always shot at it.

But that was about all I did besides work. If you get into anything enough and have any ability at all, you can get good at it. But to tell you the truth son, it can also become work too because once you get to that level, everybody EXPECTS you to shoot a possible every time and if you don't, they say you are loosing it. And everybody is gunning for you and there is no place to go but down. It takes a hell of a lot of mental discipline to keep it all in proper perspective and not let it stop being fun because the instant it does, you loose a damn fine hobby. It's OK to be competetive but winning every time should not become the objective. Having fun is what you want to do and it has been a fun hobby for me since 1958 when I first started reloading on a second hand Texan single stage press and Herter's dies and accessories. Man. I thought I was in high cotton and by golly, I was.

Right now, I have no less than 20 two pound coffee cans full of cast, sized and lubed bullets of various kinds under my loading bench and probably 300 pounds of linotype and wheel weights cast up in one pound ingots out in the garage and two five gallon buckets of raw wheel weights. I can't go into a dirt pit without looking for brass. Once the reloading bug bites you, you are bit for life. But it's a good hobby and you learn a lot about physics, chemistry, statistics, and how to do research when you are trying to work up various loads.

I recently got a ported, Taurus 2 inch barrel, stainless revolver chambered for the 45 Colt cartridge. I quit carrying my old 45 auto simply because it is too big and heavy and I'm old and skinny and had to fill my off side pocket with rocks so I could walk straight while carrying that big old auto. And even then, I was always afraid it was gonna pull my pants down right in front of everybody. And because of that, I started leaving it in the truck instead of taking it with me and that is a recipe for trouble. It doesn't matter what you have in the truck when you need it in the Quick Stop because it's the gun you have with you at the time that you are going to have to depend on to save your life or the life of someone else. So I got the little Taurus. It's no problem to carry and it's powerful enoug to adjust the attitude of any jerk that needs an attitude adjustment but now, I have to get that done with five shots instead of eight. ( All of my 45 auto magazines were ther eight shot types. Ain't no since in giving up another round if you can get it.)

I had worked with the 45 Colt cartridge about 20 years ago but I didn't remember any of the loading data and it was for an old Colt sixgun anyway. So I got down five or six different loading manuals and read everything each had to say about it. I had to go the the old Lyman manuals to find any really good information about loading cast bullets. But I have the research materials and it's no big deal because that's they way I learn about things I don't know. It's still a fun and interesting hobby even after all of these years. I hope it is for you too.
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I have a buddy whose wife carry's one of those old Bulldogs. It's chambered for the 44 Special and it's been a good little cary gun for her for over 25 years now.

The little Taurus I have is strong and holding up very well so far. (I've had it three years now.) I've shot 185 grain hollow points designed for the 45 ACP but I don't like light bullets. They shot very well however. Factory loads for the 45 Colt are on the mild side because of all the old revolvers around chambered for it so I do not carry a factory round. In fact, I haven't bought a factory bullet in about 20 years or maybe even more.

I also shot a bullet (45-201-SCW) cast from an RCBS mould. It was designed by Elmet Keith for the 45 ACP and I like it a little better than the Lyman 200 grain SWC bullet. Interestingly enough, John Browning originally designed his big automatic to shoot a 200 grain bullet and the Army changed it to 230 grains in the trials to select a new government pistol. But since the Taurus is ported and the RCBS bullet is plain base, after about 20 rounds, the front sight is coated with lead so that isn't going to work as a general shooting bullet but it might work as a self-defence load. I think I can get the velocity up on it to about 1000 FPS and still stay safe.

My "Carry" load is Lyman bullet number 452490. It is a gas check bullet and weighs 255 grains when cast from 90% lead, 5%, tin and 5% antimony. It functions great with no lead coming out of the ports because of the gas check and the hard cast bullet.

I loaded that bullet with 8 grains of Bullseye and shot about 25 of them. My chronograph said they were averaging 1050 FPS out of the 2 inch barrel!!! I didn't believe it although it was bucking and roaring like a 44 mag. I got home and checked my manual and I was supposed to load 8 grains of Unique!! The max load of bullseye was 6.2 grains. Why it didn't buldge a cylinder, I don't know but it's a tribute to the little revolvers strength that it didn't. There is no tribute to my stupidity.

So now I carry it loaded with 8 grains of Unique with the 255 grain SWC gas check bullet but I haven't shot it across the chronograph yet. I'm guesing it's gonna go about 800 to 850 out of the 2 inch barrel. At 255 grains and that speed, it'll adjust a bad attitude. I like it and sure don't feel underarmed while it is stuck in my belt.

But I confess that when I know that I am going to stay out late at night, John Browning's big automatic goes in my belt along with two full spare magazines and a big ole folding knife, and the little Taurus takes a night off. As Bill Jordan so eloquently said." If there is any advantage to be had in a gunfight, TAKE IT!"

I think ole Bill was right but the Black Prince rule is, "Never go to a gunfight with any pistol whose cartridge size does not start with at least a 4." But if I could shoot as well as Bill did, hell, I would carry a little .357 Magnum too. Naaaaaw. I'd still carry a 40 & 4 or 40 & 5. I don't see any percentage in cutting the bad guy any slack because as Bill said, "There is no secone place winner in a gunfight." And by the way, I knew Bill Jordan personally and well and when he knew he was going to stay out late at night, he also stuck John Browning's big automatic in the small of his back cocked and locked like it is supposed to be carried, so that ought to tell you something coming from the father of the Model 19 S & W 357 magnum.

I remember one new gung-ho law dog who was just out of the law enforcement academy that was attending a shooting match for the first time back when Bill was the NRA field rep, and he took Jordan to task about "SAFETY." He told Bill it was "DANGEROUS" to carry a 45 auto cocked and locked. Jordan looked at him with those steeley gray eyes of his that looked right through you and said real slow, " Damn right it is and I intend for it to be. It ain't worth a damn if it ain't dangeruous."

And I reckon so pilgrim.
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Sorry. I have no experience with either of the Rugers you mentioned. They are what I'd call a "NEW" gun and they were not around when I did most of my shooting. I did have a 44 mag Ruger auto carbine once but gave it to my nephew. He still has it and loves it. I never had any trouble shooting anything reloaded out of it and neither has he.

John Browning designed his auto to be carried cocked and locked. The designs until the series 80 came out had a "Theoretical" flaw in that they MIGHT fire if droped on the barrel. I once saw a test conducted to try to make one do that when the Jones County Sheriff's Department was going to switch over from the Mod. 19 S & W service revolver to automatics. The Glock people said the Browning design was "dangerous" and set up the test to prove it to the high sheriff. The Glock boys droped a Colt 45 auto cocked and locked for an hour and it never did fire. They broke the front sight off. They broke the hammer in half. They beat the crap out of the end of the barrel but it never fired!!

The result of all of that business was the sheriff put out a memo that said if you could qualify at the range with any pistol or revolver firing a bullet of at least 35 caliber, weighing at least 158 grains at a velocity of at least 850 PFS, you could carry it on duty as long as it was in a "law enforcement regulation" holster. A lot of guys started carrying 41 and 44 mag revolvers and 40 and 45 autos of various makes. We had a deputy named Larry Davis. He carried a 4 inch S & W 44 mag on duty and we all called him Dirty Larry. He loved it .

However, I had a Highway Patrol investigator friend that carried a little combat commander in the small of his back. He carried it with a round in the chamber but with the hammer down or as Jeff Cooper calls it, condition two. I have never done it and for this reason: my buddy was wearing a light vest over his pistol. He raised his arms to do something on a top shelf and the vest snaged on the commander hammer (we guess) and pulled it back just far enough so that when it slipped off and let go, the hammer fired the round in the chamber. It ruined a good paid of dress pants and shot a hole in his wallet. It cleared out the whole damn office and got him put on suspension for a week. He threw that Commander in his glove compartment and it stayed there for two years despite me offering him a good price for it.

He bought a Glock 40 caliber and carries it to this day.
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I shot a little of everything in that little Ruger carbine. My nephew shoots some kind of 240 jacketed bullets in it but I don't know what. I never had any feeding or ejection problems with that carbine and I never noticed any problems with any of the reloads I used in it, plain based cast, GC or jacketed. It shot them all with no problems.
Yep. I've used 10 grains of Unique, a standard pistol primer, and a wheel weight cast 250 grain Keith bullet for my "plinking" load for 30 years. It has always been accurate. If you are experiencing leading with that load, go to a harder bullet because you shouldn't be leading. If you can't buy hard cast bullets, buy a mould and cast your own. It ain't difficult or Blackwater couldn't do it.
Wal, ma question is this here: If a hen and a half laid an egg and a half in a day and a half, how many eggs would six hens lay in seven days?:rolleyes:

If ya saw a pack of dogs crossing the bayou chasing a wild hogeux across a sand bar 300 yards distant onto your property where you have signs clearly posted that says it is private property, How quick can you sit down with your back against a Magnolia tree and kill the lead dog with your S & W 44 pistolgun?

How dead will a 250 grain cast Keith bullet loaded with 22 grains of 2400 kill said dog?:rolleyes:

1) 42 eggs
2) about 30 seconds because I missed the first shot but kicked enough sand on him to knock him down. The second shot took him through both shoulders.
3) Graveyard dead!:p
You ain't listining son. I shot the dam dogeux; not the hogeux. The load was 22 grains of 2400, CCI # 300,and Keith's 250 grain SWC that is your namesake. The revolver was a S & W Model 29-2 6 1/2 inch barrel and I still have it and will have it until I die. I only have iron sights on my handguns except for the one Contender chambered for the 357 Herrett and it was scoped when I bought it and I've left it that way. The distance was every bit of 275 to 300 yards across part of Buffalo bayou and most of the big sand bar. I saw where the first round hit about six feet this side of him (short) and just held up a little more front sight on the next one and that was it. One dead dogeux. Graveyard dead.

But in those days, I could hit a gallon jug at 100 yards off hand five times out of six and here's news: I was not the best shot in the group of men I shot with by any means. Of course, the ISU 22 rapid fire champion at the time was one of the shooters and the tri-state 2700 bullseye champion was also in the group.

When you shoot with shooters like those ( and in those days I could see the damn sights) you learn to shoot or you buy a lot of root beer floats for the others because that was our standing bet. The people who owned the Upton's Dairy Bar LOVED to see us come in every Saturday afternoon because SOMEBODY in the group was the low man for the day and he had to buy all the others root beer floats. And the Upton people always ragged and harrassed the low man. It was motivation to not be the low man next week you betcha.

But, many people did not believe what Elmer Keith said about being able to shoot his 44 mag either. You'll usually find those doubting it to be people with no real long-term shooting experience or with any long range shooting exposure. We all shot from 25 to 400 yards EVERY Saturday unless we went to a pistol match somewhere and we did it ALL DAY long for a period of 15 years. We did it on my range, on the Pine Belt Rifle and Pistol Club Range and in every empty dirt pit along the county roads in five counties. We didn't shoot rifles. We shot 357, 44 and 45 ACP and Colt pistols and revolvers.

One of my neighbors was a dentist. He asked me one day if he could zero in his Browning auto 7 mm mag rifle on the range. I said sure. When I went down there, he had shot holes in my steel plates with that damn 7 mm mag and I raised hell with him for doing it. He looked at me and said, "well, what are they up there for if you aren't going to shoot them?" I said, we shoot them with pistols and lead bullets that won't put holes in them you idiot. He said, you can't hit that with any damn pistol.

Well, hee, heee. I just looked at him and said, You wanna bet a root beer float at Upton's Dairy bar son? An with that I pulled my Mod. 29 outta my belt and banged every one of the gongs from 50 to 400 yards without a miss. He couldn't believe it. He told everybody in the county about it and I started getting phone calls from all over the place from people who wanted to learn to shoot. But that was good because it was the begining of the Pine Belt Rifle and Pistol Club.

But you have to understand that the gong targets were progressively larger the further the distance. The one at 400 yards was 40 inches around for example but the one at 50 yards was only 10 inches and it was made out of heavier (thicker) steel plate to take the pounding of heavy caliber six guns at close range.

But I'm not kidding you one bit about any of that. Actually, I was just what we'd call and "average" shooter back then in that part of the country. But this was in the Free State of Jones in Mississippi and I didn't know anybody that didn't have at least one 44 magnum and most of us had two or more. Damn!! Those were some good days son. You had better enjoy them while you can. One day you'll wake up like me with a "film" over your eye and it'll look like you are looking through frosted glass and that'll be the end of it all. But I'm not bullschmitting you one dang bit when I say we had a sho-nuff bunch of GOOD shooters down there at that time in the history of the world and I can't tell you how much I miss it.

Elmer Keith was exactly correct and I've seen some of his shooting duplicated and have done it myself on occasion. But few people have EK's shooting experience or mine either. No brag. Just fact son. When you shoot as much as EK did and as I did, you get damn good at it. Either that or you are one dumb sumbritch.

Most people just are not up to much full house 44 mag shooiting any. The 6 1/2 inch MOd. 29 I have had been fired exactly six times when I bought it. It still had the one box of cartridges that came with it and there were 14 rounds left in it. I bought it from a friend that owned a gun shop. He sold it to the man Saturday morning and the man brought it back and traded it in on a 357 magnum Mod. 19 at noon. He called me and told me he had it and I bought it right then and there sight unseen and I've been happy since then. My buddy with the gun shop is dead now as are most all of those shooters I shot with back then. They were one hellva bunch of dirt road sports . . . yep, by God, we were.

I'm jiss an old half blind fart now son. Don't ever get old Edward. It's no fun.
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You make a lot of sense BW. My father retired out of the Marine Corps as a handgun instructor at the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolious, Maryland. When I was 12 years old, I started shooting a High Standard Field King 22 pistol under his instruction. He said Marines started training with that same pistol because it had the same grip angle as the 45 Colt auto they would later learn to shoot just as I later learned to shoot it. By the time I went into the service, I shot expert with rifle and pistol on the first day I was on the range.

When I got out of college and went to work, I was a special deputy sheriff. I was also in one of the most lawless counties in the south and one that had a lot of damn good shooters in it. In a matter of two years, I was a lieutenant in charge of the pistol team.

At this time, the National USA Combat Pistol Championship was held at the Mississippi Highway Patrol Pistol Range near Jackson, Mississippi. The range I shot on in the little town of Laurel was fully the equivelent of the Highway Patrol Range only it was newer and everything worked. Most of the time I shot at Jackson, something broke down in the middle of the darn match.

And, in those days, Bill Jordan was the South-Eastern NRA Field Rep. and he came to all of our matches. I got to know him very well and he usually stayed at my house over night or he at least always had dinner there.

When you shoot with and talk to and learn from those kinds of people, you learn to shoot just like you breathe. It becomes just that natural. We have all heard the advice about, sight picture, trigger control, stance, breathing, and mental conditioning. But I can tell you, just like my dad and Bill Jordan told me, that the only things you really have to do is Tiger the sights and make the sear break when you are sure the sights are alighned.

In other words, all that other stuff does not matter if the sights are not alighned and if you can't control the trigger. Now there are those who will tell you that you squeeze the trigger slowly and that a "surprise" break is what you want. BULL!! If you don't know or if you can't control the trigger break, you can't shoot a pistol. Maybe you can manage to get hits with a rifle but not a handgun. It takes MUCH MORE mental and physical control and skill to shoot a handgun well and if it isn't automatic, if you can't do it out of muscle memory, if it isn't just like breathing, you are not a trained handgun shooter.

That is what I mean when I say I shot a lot. Geeze. I shot so much it is about all I did do but I made EVERY SHOT count. I never shot a round that I didn't call first and I KNEW where my sight was when the sear broke and if it wasn't where I wanted it to be, I did a mental check and made myself "TIGHTEN UP" so the next round did and if you don't do that, you will NEVER be a good handgun shooter. When I started the shot, NOTHING ELSE EVER ENTERED MY MIND. I shut out EVERYTHING except my attention on the sight picture and making the sear break when I wanted it to. And anybody that says you can't do that is an inexperenced shooter and does not know any better simply because he has not been able to do it.

But then, you don't get to that level of shooting by going out in the dirt pit and just shooting cans with your buddy either. Every good handgun shooter I ever knew all had formal training usually by military trained people or law enforcement shooters who are usually X military shooters anyway.

It's true when we say " No good thing comes without effort." It is for damn sure you don't become a good handgun shooter without it and without burning a lot of powder while under the trained eye of a good coach. Once you learn what it takes to shoot, then it's up to you to do it but that early training is absolutely critical if you ever want to be anything except an also ran.

At least, that is my opinion anyway and I don't give a fig who agrees with it or not. I can't see worth a hoot anymore but I sure as hell would not want me shooting at me within 50 yards because if I do, I am gonna have a bullet hole in me every damn time I shoot and I still have absolute confidence in that.

I can't see those damn little "X"'s on the target anymore but if I can see it, I can still hit it.
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It all comes down to the Zen of pistol shooting Edward and here it is: SEE THE SHOT PERFECT. GUIDE THE BULLET TO THE TARGET WITH YOUR MIND.

Now I know you think that is, as you put it, "twlight zone" stuff, but it is true and you can learn to do it. If you don't see it perfect, I can tell you for sure, it will not be.

OK. I'll get off my soap box now. Sorry if I run on. I don't mean to sound like a know it all. Lord knows that isn't true.
I always made those kind of shots single action with the Mod. 29. And whenever I could, I always sat down and braced my back against something and held my revolver across my knees. I can get as steady like that as I can on sand bags. But I can't do any fine shooting with my 29 using fast double action. I can do right well using slow double action but what's the use? I cock my hammer with my left thumb and never move my grip hand or trigger finger.

But not being able to shoot a Mod 29 well using fast double action is not all due to the recoil factor. Frankly, most of it is in the trigger design. My Mod. 29 has the target hammer and trigger. In my opinion, they are an abomination and I should have had Smith change them out years ago. The target trigger is so wide, I can't shoot it double action very well at all. It actually cuts my skinny little trigger finger when I try to shoot it fast double action.

Interestingly enough, Elmer Keith said the same thing about target triggers. The trigger on my little 6 inch barrel Mod. 19 357 magnum is the standard, groved Smith trigger and I can make that sucker sound like an auto and hit with it. I'm sure sight picture recovery time is more with the 44 though, but most of the difference is due to that dang target trigger.

But 25 years ago I spent one rainy Sunday polishing it to perfection and I have not wanted to change it because I don't think I'll ever have another trigger in that Relover that is as fine as that one is right now. I can THINK the word fire and it will. That is of course, part mental conditioning, but when you get to the point where your sear breaks when you think fire, you have arrived where all good pistol shooters must get to in order to be able to shoot well.

As far as what you eat and drink, people will think I'm absolutely nuts but all of the more serious people I shot with all had a diet and exercise plan. All of us were runners and I ran 5 miles every day and seven miles on weekends. Most of us took 1000 mg of Niacin daily to keep our veins flushed out. Niacin is a basil dialator and it will cause you to "flush" when you take that much. Your head will get hot and you'll sweat but it'll flush your system and open up your veins.

DO NOT do this. If you are going to try it, start with 500 MGs and even then, I'll bet your face gets red and the top of your head gets hot. It's a rush and it's not comfortable. But it goes away in about 10 or 15 minutes. You can take more as your body becomes aclimated to it but none of us ever got to where 1000 mgs wouldn't cause us to flush.

I had a piece of broom handle about two feet long. I had a piece of nylon cord like you use to set trot lines with about 4 feet long attached to the broom handle. It had a small fishing weight on the other end and it does not have to be heavy. I'd start with the weight on the floor and I'd wind up that cord on the broom handle while holding it at arms length using both hands to wind it up. Then I'd unwind it and do that until I couldn't do it any more.

A good handgun shooter needs strong forearms. Try that little exercise and see what it does to your forearms. And of course, the last thing I did EVERY night was dry fire 10 rounds at a little target I had stuck on the other side of my bed room wall and I called a 10 on every shot or I dry fired until I did. That probably did more good than anything else to keep my shooting sharp.

So yeah, I ate salads, drank filtered water and gatoraide, took Niacin, meditated, exercised and ate, slept and breathed target shooting. Sure did. But like I said, Oree Parker was the International Shooting Union (ISU) world champion in 22 rapid fire and I shot with him every Saturday. Jim Meyers was the tri-state 2700 bullseye champion three years running and I shot with him every Saturday. We cast bullets and reloaded together and we practiced together. We coached each other and supported each other through the little slumps we all go through.

To tell you the truth Edward, when we shot, we only used a target center because it only has the first five scoring rings on it. If any shooter shot any bullet out of the black (out of the 9 ring) an audible gasp could be heard in the crowd. That was because you can see it really well because it's in the white and shows up like a sore thumb. And because everyone KNEW that shooter could not possibly win the match. The shooting was so close that if anyone ever blew a round out of the black into the 8 ring, he was toast.

I once shot a 98 with 6 X's and took third place because I was out X'ed. If you didn't shoot at least 99 with 8 X's, you would not place in the top two because that is the level of shooting that was being done.

Of course, we were in the master class and not everyone shot at that level but once you get there, you can say that you know how to shoot a handgun and be standing on very firm ground when you say it. We all could have applied for and got the Life Master Classification but none of us did because we knew we would loose the ability to compete at that level as we got older. Jim Meyers still competes in 2700 matches and he's 70 years old and he still shoots in the high expert class. He still exercises and takes Niacin. He still eats slads and lifts weights. He is still a bad MF on the firing line you betcha but he has spent a lifetime doing it and he can still see. For sure, it's darn difficult to shoot what you can't see as I know all too well.

Pistol shooting is like anything else in life that requires skill, discipline and effort. Most people want to be able to do it but they are not willing to make the commitment it takes to accomplish it. But no good thing comes without effort and that is a fact. Well, unless your name is Rockyfeller or Kennedy and even then, I'll bet none of those rich basnerds can shoot a pistol as good as I can now, even having a bad right eye.:confused:
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We shot the Outdoor National Match course in 2700 aggregrate. You shot 900 possible points with the .22, 900 with a center fire, and 900 with the 45 auto for a total of a possible 2700 points or 270 shots. Everything was shot with one hand in the classic NRA stance.

2lb trigger minimum

2.5 lb trigger minimum (except .45 auto is 3.5)
.32 cal (.312) minimum, etc.

.45 ACP auto or Revolver
Auto must have a minimum 3.5 lb trigger
Revolver may have a 2.5 lb minimum trigger

Service Pistol:
.45 ACP Colt 1911 or clone
No external modifications allowed except:
- Stippled frontstrap
- Stippled triggerguard
- Adjustable rear sight
- Undercut square front sight
Guide rods and front slide serations ARE external
modifications, and NOT allowed.
Minimum trigger pull is 4 lbs.
Ammo must be FACTORY 230 Gr. FMJ Ball or brown box hard ball

50 ft. Slow (on B-2), Timed, Rapid (on B-3 Target)
or 25 yd. Slow (on B-16), Timed, and Rapid (on B-8)
or 50 yd. Slow (on B-6), 25 yd. Timed and Rapid (on B-8)

Slowfire Match:
1 stage, 20 shots
2 strings of 10 shots each in 10 minutes.
National Records are kept

National Match Course (50&25 yd),
NRA Short Course (25 yd),
3 stages 30 shots
Slowfire Stage
1 string of 10 shots in 10 minutes
Timed Fire Stage
2 strings of 5 shots each in 20 seconds
Rapid Fire Stage
2 strings of 5 shots each in 10 seconds
National Records are kept

Timed Fire Match:
1 stage 20 shots
4 strings of 5 shots each in 20 seconds
National Records are kept

Rapid Fire Match:
1 stage 20 shots
4 strings of 5 shots each in 10 seconds
National Records are kept

"900" Aggregate Match:
Aggregate of
1 Slowfire Match (200)
1 NMC (300)
1 Timed Fire Match (200)
1 Rapid Fire Match (200)
National Records are kept
Usual course of 50 foot Indoor Tournaments

"1800" Aggregate Match:
Aggregate of
1 900 Aggregate with .22 (900)
1 900 Aggregate with Centerfire (900)
NO National Records
Usual course of 25 yard Indoor Tournaments

"2700" Aggregate Match:
Aggregate of
1 900 Aggregate with .22 (900)
1 900 Aggregate with Centerfire (900)
1 900 Aggregate with .45 (900)
National Records are kept
Usual course of Outdoor Tournaments, State , Regional,
and the National Matches.

As a comparison, I shot in the low 2600's in the 2700 Bullseye matches with an occasional jump up to 2650 but I could never do it consistently enough to earn the high master classification. Myers and Parker, my shooting buddy's, were both high master shooters and always shot in the mid 2600's.

We also shot Siluetas Metalicas matches where you shot 10 steel chickens at 50 meters, 10 hogeux at 100, 10 turkeys at 150 and 10 rams at 200. But we didn't do much of that. It'll run you to death going down range and setting those dang targets back upright. Wore out 2 good four wheelers and a motorcycle doing it. Also got started off on the wrong foot with those shooters anyway.

And we shot "45 Combat Matches" that were all the rage back then but after I witnessed two different buckos shoot themselves through the upper thigh trying quick draw with a condition one 45 auto, I quit going because if he'll shoot himself, he'll damn well shoot me too.

I shot Eley 22 match grade stuff in my 22 ( which was a model 41 S & W). I shot 2.7 grains of Bullseye and a Lyman 148 grain wad cutter in a 38 Special case in my center fire (which was a S&W Model 52 Master) and 4 grains of bullseye and a 200 grain Lyman SCW in my 45 auto ( Which was a commercial Series 70 Colt Auto tricked out by Armond Swenson.).

I shot the steel rams with my S & W Mod. 29 44 mag. Loaded with 22 grains of 2400 and Keith's 250 grain SWC.bullet. It'll knock those dang rams on their tea kettle butts at 200 meters son and they don't get up either.

If you shoot tin cans and dirt clods, you get sloppy. To really hone your shooting skill, always shoot paper targets so you can see and measure what you are doing. If you can't measure it, you can't control it simply because you don't know where it is.

I agree it's more fun to shoot tin cans, but you will not become a good target shooter doing it. And once you get good on targets, you will not have any trouble shooting in the field. You hear people say stupid things like, Oh yeah, he's a good target shooter and always out shoots me but I can shoot circles around him out the field. BALONEY!! Any man that can stand there and knock the center X out of a target can shoot the dang eye out of critters in the field. I have never understood why some people think that way but many do. Pay no attention to them because they don't know what they are talking about.

Now the above is in reference to sight shooting. If you are going to point shoot, then shooting dirt clods or tin cans can be very beneficial because it will quickly show you the relationship of how you point your pistol to where the bullet strikes. Many people say you can't be a good shot using point shooting. Somebody should have told Bill Jordan that because he didn't know any better and shot those asprin tablets using point shooting techniques. And of course Col. Rex Applegate, the father of the CIA, proved the usefulness of it many years ago, and he was, and is, exactly correct about it's effectiveness.

I've shot so much, I can use either method about as well inside of about 20 yards. Past that distance, I use the sights whenever I can. You'll find point shooting to have a limit for you as well but it may be longer or shorter, depending on your experience, motivation and ability.

If you want to really "get into" this stuff, go to
and check it out. It'll give you more information than you want to know about it. Have fun.
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Yep BW. It sorta reminds me of flying Piper niner six four two Delta under the Interstate Highway 59 bridge over Leaf River down in the Free State of Jones. It was, as you say, engrossing. But those hippies that were hiding under there smoking dope didn't think so.

You know there are some people who just have no sense of humor?
I doan know cuz I never talked to them much because it never did any good. I always just pointed to where I wanted them to get and if they didn't get, I'd poke'm with a seven battery cattle prod to "encourage" their cooperation. I've never seen one it didn't "encourage." In fact, I've seen times when it caused a religous experience to occur and they'd yell out "Oh lord" as they were converted to the true way and saw the light.

I remember one Saturday afternoon I was floating down that same Leaf river in my canoe fly fishing when I rounded a curve and there were half a dozen or so hippies naked and playing in the river. I knew about half of them. They were all stoned as they were most of the time. So I got in the deep part of the river on the off side and started around them. One big ole boy named John Watts that I'd arrested twice before, dove under water and I knew he was coming toward the canoe. So I picked up my little stainless 4 inch Model 66 Smith and waited for him to "surprise" me. As he surfaced beside me, I stuck the barrel in his mouth and asked him if he knew Jesus.

Like I said, some people just have no sense of humor at all ,but that sumbritch walked on the water that day to get back to the bank. It was the following weekend that I flew under the Interstate bridge. It was the same bunch under the bridge that was naked in the river. Hell, I STILL think it was funny but some people say I have a strange sense of humor.
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Alla that was in a different time and place son and even then, the world was catching up to the Free State of Jones. It's why I left law enforcement. The new sheriff said he don't want anybody hit with a billy club, sprayed with mace or shot and he looked right at me when he said it. So I told him where he could stick it and that if any of his "Subjects" ever crossed me, I'd damm well shoot them and the horse they rode in on. I guess that sorta tore it. He had no sense of humor.

If you were to poke some sorry sumbritch with a cattle prod today, you'd be in jail instead of him. If you flew a plane under a bridge today, the FAA would pull your license and put you in jail. Hell, they would have pulled my license back then if they had known I did it. No sense of humor.

They put Doo Dah's wife in jail for toteing a 44 special Bulldog in the Jackson. Mississippi airport if you can believe that and dang near put my wife in jail for doing the the same thing on a different occasion. Just no sense of humor.

The world has changed and it has not been for the better either. I tell you, when the King died, the whole damm world went to hell in a hand basket far as I'm concerned. But hee, heee, I still have a pistolgun, and if sum sumbritch with no sense of humor want's to share his bad attitude with me, hell, I'll let him have all six hell berry's just to show him I'm a considerate kinda guy.

I still have a sense of humor you know?
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Be thankful for your problems at work Ed. For if it were not for them, someone with less ability than yourself would have your job.
Yeah hell, when I'm on this here Interstate thangie, I'm ten feet tall an bullet proof son. I can leap tall buiildings with a single bound and shoot tha fleas off running hound dogs.

Memory is a wonderful thang ain't it? It's selective. I only remember the matches I won and the bulleyes I hit when I tell it.

But sometims when I get the blues, I remember Rex Wiseman that crashed his little Pitts Special bi-plane doing an inverted climb out from take off, and killed himself graveyard dead. I remember Alton Hessler, whose pilot license was signed by Orville Wright himself, crashing his Beech Barron in the swamp jist short of the runway at Yazoo City and killed himself dead too. And I remember Sid Lewis, and Bill Rubin and Jerry Dise and Paul Thaxton and Ray Lomax and Jerry Landrum and Pat Walters and . . .

Memory can sometimes be a bitch too. They were good men but they all left early. May they rest in peace.
Wal hell BW, since you feel that way about it, jiss brang me onena them pa-con pies all fer myself and we'll call it even.

I brang a jug of Evan and we'll talk about thiss stuff sum more.:D
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