another 444 design: 330 grains

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mtngun
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another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby mtngun » Fri Oct 03, 2008 3:35 pm

I often grumble about the dumb designs that come my way, so it's only fair that I also give credit when a customer makes good choices.

Here is what appears to be a bullet for the Marlin 444. It is very similar to the proven Fryxell design except it is heavier -- and heavier is usually better, from the cast bullet's point of view, anyway.
Image

What I like about this:
-- we expect this bullet to feed and chamber in the 444's micro-throat because it has the proven Fryxell nose. (0.425" front band, 0.315" nose length, and 73% meplat).

-- the two large body bands fill out very easily (that said, I personally would opt for numerous smaller bands and live with the fill problems. Do as I say, not as I do :x ).

-- the alloy is wheelweight and the block is aluminum, my favorite combination for heavy big bore bullets.

-- this mold was easy to cast with and produced consistent diameters. See the previous comment on wheelweight and aluminum.

-- note that it was not necessary to add tin or, heaven forbid, linotype. The richer alloys would only serve to cause shrunken spots, stick to the bottom of the sprue plate, and take longer for the sprue to harden. Wheelweight rocks.

Here are the design details, except the block was actually the standard 2-cavity, not the XL as shown on this design page.Image

Image

7.62man
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby 7.62man » Sat Dec 20, 2008 10:35 am

Lol,

I ordered that exact same mould a while back from you. I took glens idea and warpped it to suit my own use. Loaded with a stout charge of H335 it kicks like a mule. I had to have a heavy duty recoil pad installed to help tame the recoil. It feed great and is accurate (at least to 100 yards have not fired it past this yet)

I wanted a heavy bullet for big black bears and moose, I just kept increasing weight until the bullets SD got to .25.

What is the differance between the brass and alumin blocks?

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mtngun
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby mtngun » Sun Dec 21, 2008 7:43 am

Brass runs a little hotter, and has different casting characteristics. It usually works well with wheelweight alloy and bullets in the 180 - 250 grain range.

joecool911
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby joecool911 » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:19 am

mtngun wrote:I often grumble about the dumb designs that come my way, so it's only fair that I also give credit when a customer makes good choices.


So how does a novice make a good choice? I have a new ballard type 444 and am looking for a mold. It apears that you dont make recommendations. Am I better off to order a production mold and forget about a custom?

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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby mtngun » Wed Jan 21, 2009 9:25 am

joecool911 wrote: So how does a novice make a good choice? I have a new ballard type 444 and am looking for a mold. It appears that you dont make recommendations. Am I better off to order a production mold and forget about a custom?


Lever actions are the most difficult type of firearm to design a bullet for. They can be very picky about what they will cycle and chamber.

That is why I have posted a few "proven" (and I use that word loosely) designs for lever actions. They were proven to cycle and chamber. Beyond that, there are few guarantees.

No, I don't make recommendations. For one thing, I don't get paid for the time required to make a careful recommendation. That's a pretty darned good reason. I used to try to help customers design bullets, sometimes donating up to 40 hours a week. Most of the time, the customer would end up ignoring my advice and doing things his way.

When I made free recommendations, people would hold me responsible when it didn't work. "Hey, this sucker won't chamber. I demand a new mold." Lotsa luck making a living by giving away free advice and free molds.

For another thing, to properly design a bullet for a repeating rifle, I would either have to have possession of your firearm, or own such a firearm myself. Even then, it sometimes takes several attempts before a satisfactory design is achieved. Read my ramblings on my 357 Marlin, where I went through several bullet designs before the Marlin was content. Guns seem to have a mind of their own.

Mass produced molds are satisfactory for most people and most guns. For the 444 Marlin, the mass produced offerings are limited. If LBT is still open for business, Veral could probably set you up with a proper mold. I seem to recall that Veral has personal experience with a Marlin 444, so it would be a no-brainer for him. Just be sure to tell him it is for the 444 Marlin. If you just order an ordinary 44 LFN without mentioning it is for a Marlin, he may give you a LFN handgun bullet, which won't cycle or chamber in the Marlin as it comes from the factory.

(The LFN handle is somewhat meaningless. Some of the LFN bullets sold by Beartooth were not made by Veral and are not the same as Veral's LFNs. Furthermore, not all of Veral's LFNs were exactly the same, as he would tweak them to fit particular firearms).

As I have suggested on another thread, the simple solution would be for other 444 owners to post their designs, including a screenshot of the design page. Then the novice would merely have to print out the design page and mail it in. But, I cannot force customers to post their designs.

Someday I hope to have an online database of customer designs that you can choose from. Right now, such a database doesn't exist, and it might take me hours to dig through boxes of old files trying to find a design that someone ordered years ago. I simply can't make molds and play secretary at the same time.

7.62man
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby 7.62man » Thu Jan 29, 2009 5:53 pm

I am glad you posted my mutated Fryxell bullet. It shoots great out of my 444marlin (micro-groove) and hits like Thor's hammer. I found that H335 is the best powder for my rifle and I can run them around 1900-2000fps with out high pressure signs. I know some guys have gone as heavy as 400 grains in there 444 marlins but 330 grains is as big a bullet as I need. (or so I thought!)

This bullet also fires well out of my H&R 444 marlin I am unsure of the type of rifling but I know it is not micro-groove.

7.62man
Last edited by 7.62man on Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby mtngun » Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:46 pm

Thanks much for the update, 7.62man.

GlenF

Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby GlenF » Fri Mar 20, 2009 8:25 am

This design sounds like a real winner to me! And that H335 load sounds like a fine hunting load. Please let us know how it works for you in the field.

7.62man
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby 7.62man » Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:25 pm

Glen,

I still need to mail you those samples of this bullet I told you I would. Will get them sent to you in the next week or so.

As for effectivness on game, every time I carry this load and rifle into the field all I see is grouse. I think the deer/bear/moose hide when this combo goes into the bush. I don't blame them one bit, it thumps me good every time I pull the trigger.

Thinking about pushing it to 350 grains? not sure why just feel the need to tinker :)

456eec
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Re: another 444 design: 330 grains

Postby 456eec » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:02 am

I ordered this mold but with 2 grooves as suggested and have just tried some. I was also trying out a new chronograph so wasnt really concentrating on small groups but got about 2" groups consistantly at 50m with no flyers using a Lyman receiver sight. I used 42 grains of H322 and got spot on 1800fps. I note 7.62s suggestion of using H335 but I doubt it's available in Australia. A lot of the Hodgdon powders are made here and sold under a local brand but thats not one of them. Has anyone any suggestions of whether I should be able to get 2000fps with H322? I've calculated that 1975fps is will give 2900ftlb muzzle energy which is the minimum for competing in class 1 Big Game Rifle events.
I have a MG barrel Marlin.


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