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Thread: S&W Model 69 .44 Mag

  1. #21
    Boolit Master fourarmed's Avatar
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    A neighbor of mine has one, and it is a lot like Rintinglen reports: throats smaller than groove diameter. I assumed it was intentional to hold pressure down with factory ammo.

  2. #22
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by fourarmed View Post
    A neighbor of mine has one, and it is a lot like Rintinglen reports: throats smaller than groove diameter. I assumed it was intentional to hold pressure down with factory ammo.
    How would smaller throats hold down pressure? It seems to me that swaging bullets smaller as they go through the throat would increase pressure, especially jacketed bullets. Hornadys are .430".

  3. #23
    Boolit Master
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    Hardcast-- I'm not familiar with the Lyman mould you referred to, but if you've looked at the MP-432-423, you'll notice that there is a small front driving band in the SWC style and that feature makes it cut nice clean holes in paper targets. The fact that the boolits in round hole version weigh only about 190g means that less alloy is used as well as lighter recoil from such a small revolver.
    It's all chicken, even the beak!

  4. #24
    Boolit Buddy Reverend Recoil's Avatar
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    I am happy with my S&W mod. 69 4 1/4". The chamber throats on mine measured 0.430". This revolver shoots Lee 240 gr. tumble lube and Accurate 43-250V bullets well with no leading. I replaced the factor grips with slightly wider Altamont Falconia grips.
    DRB #2276

  5. #25
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    I am happy with my 4.2".
    [The Montana Gianni] Front sight and squeeze

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    I have 3 of the M69 Smiths. Two of the 2.75 inch and one of the 4.2 inch. The 2.75 inch guns have quickly become my favorite revolvers. Oh well.
    We Know Mass Cannot Be Weighed But It Has Newtonian Weight And That Is Derived From Kilograms And Kilograms Can Be Converted to Pounds. But, Still Mass Cannot Be Weighed. But How is the kilograms obtained? Can Kilograms Be Weighed? Evidentally Yes It Can. But, Still Mass Cannot Be Weighed So Kilograms Must Not Exist. Funny Isn't It.
    One good thing out of this the next time I'm at the doctors and they want to weigh me I'll tell them mass cannot be weighed.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shuz View Post
    Hardcast-- I'm not familiar with the Lyman mould you referred to, but if you've looked at the MP-432-423, you'll notice that there is a small front driving band in the SWC style and that feature makes it cut nice clean holes in paper targets. The fact that the boolits in round hole version weigh only about 190g means that less alloy is used as well as lighter recoil from such a small revolver.
    Shuz, the story goes like this: the 452423 was designed by Elmer Keith for the .45 ACP revolvers. Nominal weight was around 238 grains. A fellow on this forum, Charles Graff, used is successfully in a 1911 and made it famous with his article titled "453423 I lLove You". It is a great article and I have read it several times. The article was available on the "Sixgunner" website the last I knew of. So now, when a mold maker scales down a similar bullet, they call it a 423 boolit. The Lyman 452423 molds were hard to find, so I honchoed the first 452423 group buy, back when we were using Lee 6 cavity molds for group buys. There has been at least one more group buy of this boolit since then, and now we have much better quality molds available. Also, Miha makes a HP version of this mold in 45 and as you said, in 432 also.

  8. #28
    Boolit Buddy
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    The 2 3/4" shown in the picture in my first post is my carry gun -- set up to shoo the 260gr WFNGC/23.0gr H110. I also have a range gun with the Leupold Deltapoint Pro (not quite ready to rely on battery operated optic for use with carry gun). This is mounted on a Raptor Eng https://www.raptor-eng.com/ base which I highly recommend - great product and customer service. The red dot is a god-send for these old eyes.



    Oh, and the 2 3/4" M69 is also my favorite DA revolver.

    FWIW,

    Paul

  9. #29
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    Paul,

    The 260 Gr WFN is a formidable bullet, holy cow, that sounds like a fierce load in a short barrel. It should make a huge fireball ! Have you run it over a chronograph? In my youth I loaded 24-25 grains of H110 behind a 240 JHP for hunting. The only LBT Mold I have is a 280 gr WFNGC I bought for as S&W 629 with .4325" throats. Veral cut the mold to cast around .433 IIRC. All this talk has me thinking not only about a 4" 69, but the short barrel too. Thanks for the info and the pics.

  10. #30
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    Here are some chrono results from the 2 ĺ” M69

    5 Long paces from muzzle
    30 to 70 def f
    Results recorded on different days and months.
    H110 Load used Mag Primers
    New or 1X cases.

    240gr JHP, Federal Factory No. 44A production date May ’81 --------------------------------------------- 1,137 fps
    240gr JFP (Zero) 23.5gr H110, seated and crimped in crimp grove in Mag cases -------------------- 1,126 fps
    260gr WFNGC (Mt Bul Wks) 23.0gr H110, seated and crimped in crimp grove in Mag cases ----- 1,125 fps
    265gr SWCGC (429244) 17.5gr 2400, seated deep, crimped over fr drive band in Mag cases --- 1,100 fps
    265gr SWCGC (429244) 23.5gr H110, seated and crimped in crimp grove in Mag cases ---------- 1,162 fps
    310gr FNGCDC (Lee) 20.0gr H110, seated and crimped in top crimp grove in Mag cases --------- 1,100 fps
    325gr LFNGC (BTB) 22.0gr H110, seated and crimped in crimp grove in Mag cases --------------- 1,104 fps

    H110 Load used Mag Primers
    New or 1X cases.

    Here's picture of my friend shooting my 2 3/4" with 240gr JFP 24.0gr H110 -- video taken w/Iphone then isolated frame by frame. Can't see it in the video (not enough frames/sec?) and I don't notice when actually shooting - never shot at night



    Paul

  11. #31
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    Yes, that is a fireball ! Awesome snub nose revolver. All those cast loads should shoot lengthwise through any typical size wild pig. Thanks for the data..

  12. #32
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    The above chrono results were at 5 long paces from the muzzle with my Competition Eletronics. Subsequently obtained a Labradar and chronoed some Buff Bore, and Underwood 305gr ammo in three guns -- here are the results. Sorry for the serial posting - will be getting out here shortly.

    Buffalo Bore, 305 LBT LFN HC rated 1,325 fps
    Underwood, 305 LFNGC Plated (HiTech?) rated 1,325 fps
    LabRadar muzzle velocity at 33 deg F

    S&W M69 2.75" ===> BB 1,195 fps ===> Under 1,147fps
    S&W M69 4.25" ===> BB 1,276 fps ===> Under 1,248 fps
    Ruger SRH 7.5" ===> BB 1,395 fps ===> Under 1,315 fps

  13. #33
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul105 View Post
    The above chrono results were at 5 long paces from the muzzle with my Competition Eletronics. Subsequently obtained a Labradar and chronoed some Buff Bore, and Underwood 305gr ammo in three guns -- here are the results. Sorry for the serial posting - will be getting out here shortly.

    Buffalo Bore, 305 LBT LFN HC rated 1,325 fps
    Underwood, 305 LFNGC Plated (HiTech?) rated 1,325 fps
    LabRadar muzzle velocity at 33 deg F

    S&W M69 2.75" ===> BB 1,195 fps ===> Under 1,147fps
    S&W M69 4.25" ===> BB 1,276 fps ===> Under 1,248 fps
    Ruger SRH 7.5" ===> BB 1,395 fps ===> Under 1,315 fps
    Thanks for the BB and Underwood data. I fired some heavy Buffalo Bore heavy 45 Colt loads in a friend's 5.5" ruger Bisley several years ago. They were monster loads. I do not believe I would be willing to shoot loads like this in the S&W 69. I glad there are guys like you who are willing to do it.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master
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    Hardcast--Thanks for the info regarding the 423 origin.
    Yesterday I cast a couple of hundred round point 432-423 boolits from my brand new 4C brass MP mold. I was amazed that the delta was only. 9g amongst the 4 cavities!! The average weight was 189.6g. Amazingly this was on only the second session with this new mould. Only prep done was to lube the sliding hp pin shafts and the sprue plate!!
    It's all chicken, even the beak!

  15. #35
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    The M69 was the replacement for the S&W 696 the Ruger GP100/44 was also a replacement for that gun.

    Mine is a 696 no dash as opposed to a 696-1 or -2. -1 had the firing pin in the frame as opposed to on the hammer, and the -2 had the silly Lawyer Lock on the gun like current S&W revolvers all have.

    All the 696's had a Birdshead grip frame which allows use of the X Frame grips,,, which are wonderful.

    My gun was used and not cheap. The barrel was so leaded the guy wouldn't shoot it anymore. He had no clue how to deal with lead boolits and it took me a whole 10 minutes to clean the lead out of that barrel. The gun had 50 rounds of factory .44 Special ammo ran thru it, hence the leading. He gave up on it, his loss, my gain!

    I have a Magma mould for a really neat 190 gr SWC which I thought would be the hot ticket for this gun. They shot 12" high so I loaded a bunch of 429421's with 6.0 gr of W231 which shot right to the sights. So that's what this gun gets. PC'd boolits don't lead anything.

    My gun is a joy to shoot, and I shoot it for IDPA when it is available to me.

    Randy
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  16. #36
    Boolit Master

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    My 4.2 leads a bit, probably due to tight throats, but it is so accurate, I have not messed with it. Bore is smooth as can be.

  17. #37
    Boolit Master
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    My sweetest 44 is my Mountain Gun and it still wears the factory Goodyears. It is my baseline on 44 Mag performance.

    My nephew owns a Model 69 in 4 1/4” persuasion. He acquired it to carry while elk hunting when he was going to school in Montana (MSU).

    I have loaded it for him but I can not report leading or not but he is home now due to the school’s closure and this is his graduation year. He is going to be home now and brought all his guns home and we will get down to brass tax.

    I shot the gun before he did and was using factory and handloads on a limited basis. My overall impression is it needs a different grip than the factory “Goodyear’s”.

    The X Grip seems like a logical choice for the 69 if you are using one for woods carry.

    Liability issues aside if you are carrying a 69 for more urban situations then the factory grip and judicious downloading is called for. The X Grip would not conceal or present very well IMO.

    My Mountain Gun 629-4 4” gets my nod hands down over the Model 69 in the factory grip that my nephew owns. I base that on recoil. Now I own a SRH in .480 Ruger and love it before anyone wants to brand me a pansy! But for what it is, and maybe it is just me, the 69 delivers quite a bit more punishment compared to my MG!

    So I will restate the obvious, if you have a 69 for the woods put the X Grip on it.

    Trigger wise it is an unfair comparison but my MG beats the snot out of my nephew’s 69. Construction material differences aside, my MG has been fired and dry fired a ton since I bought it new back in the fall of ‘98 so the 69 has a decided disadvantage there. Given a fair bit of breakin I do believe the 69 would come around though enough to be adequate. The MIM parts in the 69 being a bit of a wild card.

    When I have more definitive experience with the 69 I will share it.

    Three44s
    Last edited by Three44s; 03-29-2020 at 09:50 AM.
    Quit fretting about climate change. Itís how much stronger gravity is getting every day that is bothering me!

  18. #38
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks to everyone for the info, data, and photos. This all very helpful. I am going send the cylinder from my one remaining Model 29 (a Classic 5") to DougGuy for honing the throats. I just slugged the barrel and it looks like it's .429 at the tightest point. It does have the constriction. So what is the ideal throat size? I want to shoot both cast and jacketed. My Noslers measure .428 diameter, the Hornady XTPs are .430. Of course most commercial cast are .430". I was going with .4305 throats, but I just read an opinion that they should be no larger than bullet diameter, so maybe .430 would be fine. What do you all think?

  19. #39
    Boolit Master
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    I get to shoot a mod.69 quite often a shooting buddy has one it shoots very well with .430 Hi-Tek bullets both 180 and 240 grain at 900 to 1200 FPS.

  20. #40
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hardcast View Post
    Thanks to everyone for the info, data, and photos. This all very helpful. I am going send the cylinder from my one remaining Model 29 (a Classic 5") to DougGuy for honing the throats. I just slugged the barrel and it looks like it's .429 at the tightest point. It does have the constriction. So what is the ideal throat size? I want to shoot both cast and jacketed. My Noslers measure .428 diameter, the Hornady XTPs are .430. Of course most commercial cast are .430". I was going with .4305 throats, but I just read an opinion that they should be no larger than bullet diameter, so maybe .430 would be fine. What do you all think?
    I think you are right over the target but run that by DougGuy, he is in the business.

    Three44s
    Quit fretting about climate change. Itís how much stronger gravity is getting every day that is bothering me!

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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