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Thread: .444 Marlin- Anyone still using one?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master smkummer's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
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    So. Indiana
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    I have several Marlin and Winchester lever guns. I would ask what’s more important to you….hunting or target shooting? The reason I ask is the original buckhorns in my somewhat limited deer hunting experience were perfect for minute of deer and more importantly fast target acquisition and follow up shoots should it be needed. A rear aperture peep takes a slight bit longer to find the target. I can keep my eye on the deer as I raise the buckhorns on it. I shoot rear aperture better on paper though. The only reason I don’t have a 444 Marlin is I have a 1894 44 mag with the ranch dog .432 micro groove gas check mold at about 260 grains and I have the wonderful 1895 sporter 45-70 with pistol grip and 2/3 tube.

  2. #22
    Boolit Master Moleman-'s Avatar
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    Jul 2016
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    SW Michigan next to a corn field
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    Quote Originally Posted by smkummer View Post
    I have several Marlin and Winchester lever guns. I would ask what’s more important to you….hunting or target shooting? The reason I ask is the original buckhorns in my somewhat limited deer hunting experience were perfect for minute of deer and more importantly fast target acquisition and follow up shoots should it be needed. A rear aperture peep takes a slight bit longer to find the target. I can keep my eye on the deer as I raise the buckhorns on it. I shoot rear aperture better on paper though. The only reason I don’t have a 444 Marlin is I have a 1894 44 mag with the ranch dog .432 micro groove gas check mold at about 260 grains and I have the wonderful 1895 sporter 45-70 with pistol grip and 2/3 tube.
    What you're describing seems like you're using too fine of a rear peep. Peep sights are faster in use than buckhorns, but not if you use a small target aperture.

  3. #23
    Boolit Master
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    May 2013
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    Eastern WY
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    I have used a Marlin .444 (1980) to hunt elk. I have worked loads using the Speer UniCor(?) 300 grain and the Hornady 265 FlatNose. Using H322 accuracy was outstanding with either bullet. Recoil is slightly less than my 1895 Marlin .45-70, but the .444 is a heavier rifle. Using various manuals, my velocities pretty much match the books when using the top-end loads. I have loaded light loads using several different .44 molds, with .432 sizing working the best. The Ranch Dog 265 grain 44 mold sized to .432 works very well. I've used 4227, Universal and TiteGroup for light loads. H322 has given better accuracy than Reloder 7 or 4198 for me. I shot a six-point through the shoulders with the Hornady 265 grain, about 65 yards, bullet core made through to far side, found under hide when skinning, bull ran about 50 yards.. Load development done with 4.5-14 Burris, I hunt with a 1.75-6 Leupold VX3.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Quilcene, Washington
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    I have had mine for well over 30 years and have enjoyed it for elk and bear. I no longer hunt elk but dropped a nice little black bear with it last summer. I hunt mostly with 240 gr SWC with gas checks at an mv of about 1600 but have recently begun shooting 200 gr SWC-pb at about 1300 fps and have been pleased with its accuracy at 50 yards.

  5. #25
    Boolit Mold ttd444's Avatar
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    Nov 2021
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    my 444 is a TC Encore with a 23" MGM heavy factory barrel with a Sapphyre laminate stock and a 3-9x Leopold. i shot 240gr Hornady XTP, 265gr Hornady FN, 250gr penta hp, 255gr Keith type SWC, 275gr Ranch Dog, 280gr LFN GC, 280gr WFN GC and 300gr SAECO FN GC. i have Trail Boss, Unique, 2400, H322, H4198 and Reloder 7.

    i killed deer with the 250gr thru 300gr boolits and 1400 - 2300fps.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    Nov 2017
    Location
    brisbane ,qld,australia
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    Ive had the Williams side mount aperature on my Marlin for near on 50 years ......and IMHO ,its a better sight than the Lyman ......made of ally ,and not traditional .......it has stayed put ,the Lyman on the Winchester 94 simply wont stay put ,and moves forward with heavy loads .......simple fact is aluminium has better 'sticktion' on the steel receiver than the Lyman .......and dont say screws arent tight .....any tighter and the reciever threads are going to strip.

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    the last loads was working up for the 444 is with mp 432640 seated deep so it will chamber in 444s and crimped with Lee FCD. I started with 47 grains imr 8208.

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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