Bought an old .44 Mag. Carbine today...A question or two.

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VonFatman

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 31, 2003
Messages
738
Location
Just a Smidge Outside of Kansas City, MO
I am itching to take it out for a spin but alas I got home too late today!!

According to Ruger, it's a 1970 gun.

My guess is that I did OK on the purchase. My out-the-door was about $460...I have not seen too many this low for a while. I rate the gun at Very Good. It's got a few minor blems, but it's a shooter and that's why I bought it.

I have a couple questions.

1) Can I shoot about any .44 Mag load I find in the normal reloading guides in this gun?

2) Are "Ruger"/Contender loads approved in this gun?

3) Can this gun handle .44 Specials? If so, do they need to be "Keith" type to make the gun function?

4) Anything I should know about the gun?


Thanks. I'll try to get a pic or two tomorrow when I shoot it...right now I'm pinching myself after stumbling into this critter and finally getting one home.

Bob
 

mike7mm08

Buckeye
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
1,709
Location
Milwaukee Wisconsin
No lead bullets as it can cause the gas system to plug up. It is a Rosie O'Donnell to clean lead out of it. Being an older gun that you cannot get parts for I would not pound it with heavy loads. 44 special will probable not cycle the action.
 

dmazur

Bearcat
Joined
Oct 31, 2007
Messages
62
Location
Pacific NW
I have two of these carbines.

It's a gas-operated gun with load requirements that can be a little finicky.

Cartridge overall length shouldn't be longer than 1.610" or you can have trouble with the magazine timing. Most "normal" .44 Magnum reloading data is OK for this carbine, but you can't expect it to function correctly with what are called "mild target loads".

Just because it's a Ruger doesn't mean it's a Super Blackhawk... :) I believe it is probably unsafe to shoot heavy loads like some of the Garretts, even if you could get them to feed. As the gas system isn't adjustable, this may beat the tar out of the receiver and action.

You may be onto something with "hot" .44 Special loads having the power to cycle the action. I haven't tried this, so I just don't know. (I'm not sure why anyone would want to shoot .44 Special out of a .44 Mag, if you had to hotrod them to make it cycle...kind of right back at square one so why bother?)

As far as I know, these carbines like 240gr JSP's or JHP's. Because of slow-burning powders (?), you generally get 1800 fps or so with the carbine length barrel. Works fine on deer to 100 yds.

There are two "dots" on the receiver on later models which are not for scope mounts! There are two tapped holes on the rear of the receiver for the "short" mount and two additional ones on the barrel for the "tall" mount. These are available from Brownells or Midway, mfd by Weaver. They are tall enough to just about make the iron sights useless. If you really want iron sights for an alternative without having to remove the scope mounts, you can put a 0.250" riser block on the front sight and use a NECG aperture sight that quickly attaches to the rear scope mount. (The "dots" on the receiver are an attachment for a bolt lug engagement piece inside the receiver. This part is probably heat-treated, and the rest of the receiver most likely isn't.)

Don't put any kind of lubricant in the magazine tube that will dry out and get gummy. This will slow the timing and result in misfeeds. The magazine tube is not designed to be disassembled and it is a real PITA to clean gummy lubricant out of it. (Don't ask how I know this.)

As another already advised, don't shoot lead bullets in this carbine. The gas port will probably plug up and it isn't easy to clean. Unlike Garands, it is OK to lightly lube the gas piston in this carbine. This is the part that falls on the floor when you disassemble the rifle...

One last thing - you have to have the action locked back to remove the barrel/receiver assembly from the stock. Don't forget to release this before attempting further disassembly.
 

pete44ru

Hunter
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
2,176
Location
Rhode Island
Just a slight adjustment -

[There are two "dots" on the receiver on later models which are not for scope mounts!]

Correct-o-mundo.

[The "dots" on the receiver are an attachment for a bolt lug engagement piece inside the receiver.]

The "dots" are the ends of the two screws that hold an internal action part to the roof of the receiver i do not remove them.
The "part", inside the roof of the receiver, is the cartridge guide.

The bolt locks into cuts in the receiver proper.

The action's recoil lug/block is the patent breech section at the rear of the action, that remains with the stock when the barreled action is removed for cleaning/repair - and is the area that may need attention (like glass bedding) if accuracy is problematic.




[There are two tapped holes on the rear of the receiver for the "short" mount and two additional ones on the barrel for the "tall" mount.]
[They are tall enough to just about make the iron sights useless.]

While the newer scope mount blocks/bases are solid/flat across their tops, there are older bases (different base numbers) which have a deep/wide sighting channel built into them, making use of the issue open sights EZ.

AFAIK, the flat-top rear base is a #25, while the identical base with the sighting channel is a #54; the flat-top barrel/front base is a #47, but I can't recall the number for the other barrel base. (my low front base w/sighting channel is unmarked).



As posted above, due to the tube magazine and the gas port operating system - no pointed boolits except LeverEvolutions, and no lead boolits.

The sights and the gas system/timing are happiest with 240gr JSP's or JHP's loaded to factory specs - why I generally buy/shoot/hunt with whatever factory JSP's are cheapest @ ammo resupply/buy time.

"Contender" level handloads should be safe in the Carbine.

.
 

VonFatman

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 31, 2003
Messages
738
Location
Just a Smidge Outside of Kansas City, MO
All great stuff. Thank you gents!! I will see what I have loaded up with jackets...I may need to get to work reloading!

Soooo....would anyone like to suggest the "optimal" recipe for this gun??? I have many,many jacketed .44 bullets...lots of powder including H-110, 296, 2400 etc.

I really appreciate everyone making time to offer information.

Can't wait to pull the trigger on this new gun!!

UPDATE:

Dug out a couple boxes of reloads...

Here's one I used in the gun this morning...

240gr SJSP MagTech
18gr. 2400
Win Primer
Rem. Brass-new
Firm Crimp
FPS: 1146 (S&W M29-5 w/6" Barrel)
FPS: 1311 (S&W M29-3 w/8 3/8" Barrel)
FPS: 1442 (T/C Contender 10")
Best warm load--both S&Ws on the money--Contender load is perfect

I shot 10 rounds. The first 5 were two slow and three fast. The last round did not feed into the chamber.

The next 5 were shot at paced aimed fire with all rounds feeding and firing.

I assume this is not a "fast" shooter.

I have some plated bullets. Does anyone have experience with these in the carbine?

I have a box of reloads with:

240gr RNFP--Plated
7gr Unique
WLP Mixed Brass
OAL 1.586

I'm going to assume these would be quite lite for the carbine. I did not try them in the gun.

I am thinking of buying a Williams peep-sight for the gun...having the holes pre-drilled is nice.

Thank you.

Bob
 

SteveRuger

Hunter
Joined
Apr 6, 2004
Messages
2,388
Location
Northern, Utah. USA
For you 44 carbine shooters who may have concerns about the Ruger 44 carbines! Grab your Ruger & His Guns Book & read about the early days & what the Old Man did to that gun! Very good reading & Very entertaining! A MUST READ!
 

TDF

Single-Sixer
Joined
Feb 23, 2006
Messages
205
Location
Seward, NE
In one of Hornady's reloading manuals, the fourth edition, their test gun for their 44 mag rifle section was a Ruger carbine. I settled on their 300 gr. XTP over a top load of H110. It just hammers deer.

TDF
 

VonFatman

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 31, 2003
Messages
738
Location
Just a Smidge Outside of Kansas City, MO
OK all you carbine fans...could I twist your arm for a little more help?

How about some suggestions on take-down and cleaning the gun (the idea being to do a great job and NOT have parts left over or missing parts or worst of all parts TWANGING all over the basement).

Thanks!!!

Steve,
That book is on my "want to buy" list!! Thanks for the head's up! I plan to read all about it!!!

TDF,
Thanks for the load suggestion!! I have a 4th and will look it up.

Bob
 

Retsoff

Bearcat
Joined
Dec 5, 2007
Messages
25
Location
Slidell, LA
I have an old Ruger 44 Mag Carbine for which I downloaded an owners manual a long time ago. I think you'll need to know the serial # of your carbine, since my instructions say it's for SN's w/no prefix or beginning with 100-. This was not part of the downloaded manual but a notation I made on the first page of the manual. For the life of me, I can't remember how I figured out which manual I needed. Anyway, I can tell you from past experience that, when you go to replace the magazine tube/spring, take your time and be patient. It took me a few frustrating times before I was able to do this right. Then again, I'm a klutz, so I'm sure you'll do better.
 

mike7mm08

Buckeye
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
1,709
Location
Milwaukee Wisconsin
Retsoff":3f6s6sh4 said:
I have an old Ruger 44 Mag Carbine for which I downloaded an owners manual a long time ago. I think you'll need to know the serial # of your carbine, since my instructions say it's for SN's w/no prefix or beginning with 100-. This was not part of the downloaded manual but a notation I made on the first page of the manual. For the life of me, I can't remember how I figured out which manual I needed. Anyway, I can tell you from past experience that, when you go to replace the magazine tube/spring, take your time and be patient. It took me a few frustrating times before I was able to do this right. Then again, I'm a klutz, so I'm sure you'll do better.

On Ruger's download page it lists the manuals based on serial number prefix.
 

Boxhead

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 28, 2004
Messages
882
Location
Either Texas or Idaho
The 270 Speer Gold Dot has proven to be a fine bullet balancing reliability, accuracy, velocity and penetration. This after a few hogs and deer. They are fairly priced too. My two bits...
 

skipytiger

Bearcat
Joined
Apr 27, 2013
Messages
2
I recently found a great YouTube that shows step by step take-down and reassembly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muV5e-3E4Dg

Mike
 

ElToro

Single-Sixer
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
166
Location
Bay Area California
mine wil not cycle with factory 44 specials or even factory 180 mags. i shoot winchester or federal 240 JSP and it runs great and my scope is also dialed perfectly for that load.
 
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