44-40 Ballistics Testing Flow Chart

  • Last Post 30 May 2020
SavvyJack posted this 23 May 2020

As most of you already know, a while back I made some amateur tests regarding chamber pressures using the Pressuretrace II system. Looking at the results is one thing but looking at the results....and comparing them to original ballistics does nothing but bring up more questions. But the comparisons are  almost mirror reflections.

*Black Powder - Original Velocities 1873-1877, Early Black Powder loads were recorded to be 1,325fps.

Both John Kort and I have replicated these velocities with Black Powder. John achieved great accuracy but all I did was test for Pressures and Velocity. Interestingly enough, many of John's testing of original cartridges resulted in a tad greater velocities than advertised....much the same with my tests.  

40gr Goex FFFg gave me 1,356fps with a 427098 when using original early pre-1880's Unheadstamed cases at an interesting 12,648psi.  

40gr Swiss FFg proved better at 1,373fps with the 427098 using the same cases at 14,285psi.

Both test results recorded velocities very close to original recorded velocities.      


**Black Powder - Original Velocities 1886-1904, Black powder loads of this time frame show a lower velocity of 1,245fps.   My test loads using various manufactured cases from this time period with the above powders recorded from 1,235fps to 1,276fps with pressures in the 12,500psi area, again recording velocities very close to original recordings.      


***Black Powder - Original Velocities Today, Using the above black powder loads in modern cases resulted in mid 1,250fps range with mild chamber pressures of only 8,500psi to 10,000psi. Powder compression is a must with both original and modern brass. H2O measurements of the cases resulted in different overall volumes as expected. Early Semi-balloon head cases yielded more volume than later semi-balloon head cases and of course more than modern cases. Replicated powder compression was between .17" - .21" respectively between the older cases.   Modern black powder loads using modern components more replicate the 1886-1904 black powder loadings with components of that era. However, trying to replicate the powder compression can be problematic. Most people load even less powder, maybe 36gr and no powder compression, which will more than likely result in even less velocity and pressures.   There is a link to the PDF file on the website at the top of the page: https://sites.google.com/view/44winchester/velocities

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SavvyJack posted this 28 May 2020

1950, July 15th - Ballistics of Western-Winchester Cartridges dated July 15th, 1950. K-Codes: K4412C (Winchester), K1372C (Western) RIFLE VELOCITY: 1,320fps, 1,160fps @ 100 yards, 1,050fps @ 200 yards, 990 fps @ 300 yards. Energy: 1,570/1,210/990/880, Mid-Range Trajectory: 2.9"/13.0"/32.5" REVOLVER VELOCITY: 973fps @ 423 ft lbs

Below is a dissected cartridge from a Western box dated 1949. It contained 15.3gr of a ball powder.


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SavvyJack posted this 29 May 2020

This one confuses me a tad but who knows.....

July 21,1958 -  "1954" Winchester Box with  14.7gr "Shaprshooter" type looking powder. It was my understanding that Winchester stopped using Sharpshooter powder just after WWII-ish. I have, a less desirable collector’s condition, “1954” box, W4440 cartridge code and stamp dated NG12. This should date this box to 21 July 1958. However, this box has the "Olin Industries call-out" rather than the "Olin Matheison" call-out of "1954". I would think that the "W4440" cartridge code would put this in the "1954" category as well as the date itself...1958 but...... 

I dissected a cartridge and inside I found 14.7gr of Sharpshooter type powder. A 1950 catalog shows 1,320fps while a 1960 catalog shows a drop to 1,310fps. Sharpe’s 1937 handloading manual shows 14.0gr of Sharpshooter to be 1,260fps (no pressure recorded) and 17.3gr to be 1,505fps @ 14,000cup (replicating the 1903 WHV) and also shows (what is on the Hercules Sharpshooter powder can) 19.6gr, Sharp reported produced 1,680fps @ 20,000cup. To back up a tad, that 17.3gr of SHarpshooting clocking in at 1,505fps does replicate the early WHV velocities as well as the "Low Pressure" of 14,000cup. Later WHV loads were reported to be 1,570fps at a much higher 22,000cup. That cup does not relate to Sharp's data. Sharp's data was recorded by 1937 while the 1,570fps/22,000cup data could be post 1937...another "who knows" question....


It is easy to get confused with all of this information.

Hey, I am still learning!






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SavvyJack posted this 30 May 2020

Out of the four WHV cartridges I dissected, two WRA and two REM, various headstamps etc.

13.9gr Sharpshooter - WRA - 1W Primer

15.2gr Sharpshooter - WRA - 111 Primer

18,8gr Sharpshooter - copper/brass

19.3gr Sharpshooter - copper/brass I have yet to look up the REM primers used.  This just brings up yet more questions.

One early Tin plated 200gr JSP, 1W primed WRA cartridge had 16gr of Dupont No.2 powder. My guess would be from the early 1920's.

The bullet to the left is one John Kort sent for gel testing years ago, the results show devastating results!



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