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Thread: do i need a gas check for .44mag

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    do i need a gas check for .44mag

    Hi,
    Iv just cast my 1st boolits and have powder coated them, i have a .44 underlever and plan to load spl and mag for it, do i need a gas check??

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

    Dieselhorses's Avatar
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    Just my opinion, but yes, I would definitely use a gas check even being powder coating in rifle rounds. Alloy, sizing and powder all play a part too.
    Pain is just weakness leaving the body...
    It is better to be hated for who you are, than to be loved for who you are not (ask DJT).

  3. #3
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    303max- welcome to posting on CB. If you decided to start casting to save money, forget it. You won't, you'll just shoot more.

    As diesel said, there are several variables to take into consideration. If you plan on pushing the boolit over 1600 fps yes. I don't in my Winchester. I PC (powder coat) all my boolits but that makes little difference, I just don't need lube.

    To get an accurate answer for your situation, try it both ways on your particular gun and see what it says, likes

    Casting boolits (lead bullets) properly is a science, once you know the basics, not a hard science.
    There is a lot of good information on CB. The Google search (top right of every forum page) is a gateway to all the knowledge on this forum. IF you can’t find your answer there ask the question (Please be as detailed as possible, pictures help http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...g-screen-shots I would be very surprised if there wasn’t someone on this forum that could answer ANY (firearm related) question you might have)
    http://www.lasc.us/Fryxell_Book_Contents.htm
    1. Boolits need to be cast .0005 to .003 (normally .002) over the slugged diameter of your barrel for accuracy and to avoid leading. If the fit is wrong nothing else will work right.
    a. slugging a barrel (it is safer to use a brass rod or a steel rod with a couple of coats of tape to avoid damaging your barrel http://7.62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinSlug.htm
    b. chamber casting https://www.brownells.com/guntech/ce....htm?lid=10614
    or pound casting http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...rifle-chamber)
    2. the right alloy needs to be used for the velocity and purpose of the boolit (don’t fall into the trap of going with too hard an alloy

    Economical way to easily test lead hardness
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...rdness-testing

    Some alloys harden over time
    http://www.lasc.us/Fryxell_Book_Chap...Metallurgy.htm
    different alloy’s different end hardnesses


    Lead alloy calculator
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/atta...4&d=1341560870
    3. velocity the bullet needs to be pushed hard/fast enough to get the proper spin, have the proper velocity to accurately reach the target but not so hard as to be dangerous or strip the lead off in the grooves instead of spinning the boolit..
    The boolit needs to be the right weight for the riffling/twist rate of your barrel
    Powders range from fast to slow, you need to choose the right powder for your barrel length & application.
    Loading manuals list the best powders for certain calibers and boolit weights.
    NEVER use any posted noncommercial load data without first checking commercial load data to see if falls in the safe parameter for your firearm!! There are several firearms out there that can handle much higher pressures than others!!
    Link to free online load data
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...online-sources

  4. #4
    Boolit Mold
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    Thanks for the very thurough reply!!

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
    Dragonheart's Avatar
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    If you bullet has a recess for a check I would use one as it will provide a flat base, which otherwise you will not have. As far as the PC if you have a PC that is of sufficient thickness and it is properly cured then you do not need a check to seal & protect the alloy.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I like to use gas checks where ever possible but some cast combinations just don't work with checks, my brother shoots a 320gr Hi-Tek coated un checked bullet that I make, at near 1900 fps from his 460 SW revolver with no leading and outstanding accuracy. I should point out these are cast from CWW with a little tin added. Regards Stephen

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    If your mold doesn't have a base for a gas check, you can't use them. I would try your loads and see what happens without. You can push WW pretty fast if the bullet fit is good before you'll see any leading. Lube isn't an issue because you powder coated, so that is off the table.

    For example, I push LEE 170 gr FNGC bullets @ 2150 FPS in a 30-06, (Chronographed), with liquid alox with zero leading. That is with WW with a bit of range scrap mixed in. If you were to follow most books, it would say my barrel should look like a clogged lead water pipe.

    Give your bullets a try and see what you can push them to before getting too worried. That's part of the fun.

  8. #8
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    303max,
    welcome to the forum.
    a quick answer to your question, "do i need a gas check for .44mag"
    The answer is: you do not "need" a GC.

    There is a lot of info in the "classics and Stickies" section.
    this one also addresses your question.

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...out-Gas-checks

  9. #9
    Boolit Grand Master

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    I load top end "J" bullet loads under my equal weight cast boolits in my 1894 marlin .44 mag and use all PB boolits with little issue. It used to lead a bit but for two reasons:

    - boolits were undersize (SAAMI rifle spec is 0.431" groove diameter where it is 0.429" groove diameter for handgun)
    - My gun had tight spots in the bore under dovetails and roll stamps

    Fat boolits then lapping the tight spots out improved accuracy and now leading is no longer.

    So, from my perspective... no you do not need gas checks for .44 mag rifle loads if the boolits fit well. However, there is nothing wrong with using gas check boolits if you prefer and they may take care of less than perfect boolit fit.

    YMMV

    Longbow

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
    Tom W.'s Avatar
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    Some of my .44 molds use a gas check, most don't.
    Tom
    μολὼν λαβέ


    Did I ever mention that I hate to trim brass?

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    Depends on how fast you want to push them .in my 357 mag I just use gas checked boolits if I go faster than 1100 fps .boolit fit is the main thing .

  12. #12
    If your alloy hardness is correct, the boolet size matches the cylinder throats AND the revolver has a smooth barrel and no constriction at the frame threads, a gas check is a waste of money.
    I find they are not needed in revolvers and pistols, certainly not under 1000 fps, usually not in magnums up to 1300 fps. A gas check can help if all the factors above are not perfect, which is why some shooters find them helpful.

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Well said. A good quality lube surely helps, as well.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
    Dragonheart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duckdog View Post
    Well said. A good quality lube surely helps, as well.
    I will ditto that and the very best lube is powder coating.

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy

    Prodigal Son's Avatar
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    Lyman #2 alloy no if you stay around 1300-1400 fps! Keith style 255 gr pb kills everything needs killing from my M29 S&W
    Semper Fidelis, to God, Country and Corps!

  16. #16
    Boolit Mold
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    Thanks guys, lots of good info

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    I shoot without gascheck in my 44mag, with full jacket loads, no problem.
    bhn is around 20, sometime's even 16, I won't dare to go lower, bhn 20 works great
    .N110 21,0 grain with a 250gr rcbs boolit, lube is 50/50.

  18. #18
    Boolit Grand Master


    Larry Gibson's Avatar
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    In a revolver no you do not need a GC unless you want to push softer alloys (for expansion) with top end loads. As mentioned a good FB design with a good fit and a good lube is all that is "needed".

    However, the OP ask about the need for the GC in a "44 underlever" not a revolver. Then if top end magnum loads are wanted giving the best accuracy with the rifle then a GC'd cast bullet is going work best.
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  19. #19
    Boolit Master RED BEAR's Avatar
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    i would say try it both ways and if the gas checked bullet doesn't out preform the plain then why waste the money. every gun is different what works in mine may not work in yours. i load for some of my family and some come back and claim this is the most accurate ammo i have ever shot others complain that it is terrible i load for my guns and if it works for you great and if not so be it. just give both a try and see what work s for you

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check