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Heavy 44-40 (44WCF) Handgun and Rifle Ammo hc

SKU: 44-40-200 HC/20
Qty: - +

Heavy 44-40 (44WCF)
200 gr. Hard Cast @ 1,050fps/ME 490 ft lbs
20 Round Box

Item 44-40-200 HC

Buffalo Bore Full Power Black Powder Equivalent 44-40 (44WCF) Ammunition

For nearly two decades, as of this writing, (12-20-17) our customers have been requesting some full power 44-40 loads. Because of the antiquity of this cartridge (It was first developed as a black powder only cartridge in the mid-1800’s), there are numerous potential issues with making modern full power loads, as I will describe below.

Original 200gr. lead (not hard cast, but lead) bullets achieved around 1,000 fps from 7.5-inch barreled revolvers of the day and 1,300+ fps from rifles. Our new loads do that and a bit more with smokeless powders while staying within the black powder pressures of 13,000 CUP as a maximum average pressure.

Back in the 1800’s, there was no way for the gun/ammo industry to standardize pressures or firearm dimensions, hence my hesitancy to produce modern ammo designed for specific firearm dimensions of today. Allow me to give you an example of just one set of dynamics that are problematic. Early Colt revolvers specified a bore diameter of .427 inch, (44 SPL and 44 Mag. utilize .429 inch bore diameters) but some of those revolvers used a chamber throat of .423-.424 inch. This was done to raise pressures with black powder and get uniform ignition and higher velocity from revolvers (this is not an issue with rifles) by forcing that soft, pure lead bullet of around .427-.428 diameter into the smaller chamber throat and forcing that chamber throat to size down the bullet………...then, when that soft bullet would hit the .427 bore, it was soft enough to “slug up” to .427, seal the bore, shoot accurately and at high velocity.  So, here’s one of the problems in making modern ammo……. if someone is negligent enough to fire modern ammo featuring HARD CAST bullets through an old revolver with such undersized chamber throats……hard cast bullets are much harder than pure lead and if you try to force a very hard bullet through a grossly undersized chamber throat, that hard bullet will not easily size down like pure lead and would, therefore, raise pressures higher than the old iron (not steel, but iron) revolvers can withstand. To avoid this type of issue, please do not shoot this modern 44-40 ammo through any revolver made before 1900. By 1900, the steel used for these revolvers, was actually steel, not iron.

But (there has to be a but) another issue is that there are many old revolvers that are in very poor shooting condition and it is risky to shoot them with any ammo……so, I’m asking each shooter to be responsible and have any questionable revolvers checked by a competent gunsmith (not all gunsmiths are very competent) before firing them with any ammo. In America, folks are quite careless and thoughtless about what they do with firearms (believe me) and then when they make a mistake and hurt themselves or others, they simply sue……. never mind that they neglected to be responsible for their actions in the first place………this is modern America, where nobody accepts responsibility for educating themselves before they start shooting or involving themselves in many activities.

Frankly, I would not fire any ammo from any firearm that was made of steel for black powder use. The 1894 Winchester, chambered in 30-30 was the very first American firearm for civilians with barrel steel designed to contain the higher pressures of smokeless powder. By 1900 most gun makers were getting on board with higher pressure cylinder and barrel steel for smokeless powder. This would be a great place to ask you to read my essay on aging firearms.


If I sound jaundiced at the irresponsible and unaccountable generation of Americans we have raised, I am. Far too many of them are still living in their single mom’s basement while in their 20’s or 30’s and all they have to do is turn 21 and they can buy a handgun and ammo and start blasting away…………when they negligently make a mistake, their mommy tells them it is not their fault, which is what she’s been doing since they were little boys. Then they go searching for an attorney. This generation of “do nothing”, wait for handouts from our government or mommy, irresponsible Americans is deeply disturbing to me. The idea of such folks buying and handling firearms is spooky at best and the idea of them buying my ammo, using it carelessly and then suing me, is always on my mind. I get daily emails from customers who demonstrate they are careless and foolish with firearms and ammo and whatever mistake they happen to make, is not their fault, just ask them! Rant over.

You can see the list of firearms (and their corresponding velocities) I used to develop these modern 44-40 loads. We use real world firearms to generate our advertised velocities. We believe it is an industry-wide duplicitous practice to use laboratory barrels to produce advertised velocities, which real-world firearms will never achieve. 

Accuracy with both new BBA 44-40 loads was good to excellent in all the firearms listed below.

Item # 44-40 200 HC, features a 15 BHN hard cast bullet. (Pure lead is 4-5 BHN) This bullet will not expand when impacting living mammalian tissues at 1,300 fps or less. It will act as a “solid” and therefore penetrate quite deeply (at least three feet+, depending on what bones are struck). The flat nose will do a great deal of terminal damage when compared to a round nose bullet.
The bullet is sized .428 inch and fits wonderfully into .427 through .429 bores.
We are also using a flash suppressed powder to avoid blinding muzzle flash in the event you are forced to drop the hammer in low light when the criminal element and when wild animals are most active.
We do not intend to make a jacketed bullet load in 44-40 as jacketed bullets, in general, are not as slick as hard cast bullets and raise pressures far too much. We would have to load a jacketed bullet about 200-250 fps slower than a hard cast bullet to stay within the SAAMI max. average pressure spec. of 13,000 CUP.
? 1,350 fps -- Winchester model 1892, 20-inch barrel, circa 1916
? 1,353 fps -- Uberti model 1873, 19-inch barrel, circa 1997
? 1,034 fps -- Ruger Vaquero (large frame), 7.5-inch barrel, circa 2003
? 1,036 fps -- Colt New Service, 7.5-inch barrel, circa 1905
?    980 fps -- S&W model 544, 5.5-inch barrel, circa 1980’s
? 1,080 fps -- Custom (Brian Pearce made) SAA replica, 5.5-inch barrel, circa 2017 - Not A Typo
?    949 fps -- Ruger converted 357 Mag. flat top (by Jack Huntington), circa 1959, 4.75-inch barrel

Item # 44-40 185 HP utilizes a much softer (hollow nose) bullet than our 200gr. load. This bullet is designed to expand and is roughly 8-9 BHN in hardness. It will expand on impact at handgun velocities on living flesh and bone and will expand radically on such tissues at rifle velocities. Expect about 18 to 24 inches of penetration in living mammalian tissues, depending on impact velocity and what bones, if any, are struck. Again, we are using a flash suppressed powder. This bullet is sized .428 inch and works great in bores of .427 to .430 inch. This bullet is soft enough to “slug up” under pressure, to fill/seal bores as large as .431 inch.
? 1,471 fps -- Winchester model 1892, 20-inch barrel, circa 1916
? 1,470 fps -- Uberti model 1873, 19-inch barrel, circa 1997
? 1,171 fps -- Ruger Vaquero (large frame), 7.5-inch barrel, circa 2003
? 1,199 fps -- Colt New Service, 7.5-inch barrel, circa 1905---
? 1,073 fps -- S&W Model 544, 5.5-inch barrel, circa 1980’s
?    ??? fps -- Custom (Brian Pearce made) SAA replica, 5.5-inch barrel, circa 2017
? 1,101 fps -- Ruger converted 357 Mag. flat top, (by Jack Huntington) 4.75-inch barrel, circa 1959

I hope you enjoy this powerful and useful 44-40 ammo. I hope that you are responsible and thoughtful about which firearms you choose to fire it in. It will only take one irresponsible user of this ammo, to sue me for their own negligence and I will have to remove it from the market. Good shooting and God bless.


Coming Soon - Item 44-40-200 HC - Exterior Ballistics Charts for several Muzzle Velocities


Field Proven pistol and handgun ammo. Maximum firepower ammo. Best ammunition for pistols and handguns for sale. Buffalo Bore. Strictly big bore. Strictly Business.

You must be 18 or older to order ammunition. Ammunition must ship UPS ground. Due to Department of Transportation regulations, we cannot accept returns on Ammunition. Make sure to use the correct ammunition in your gun. Check local laws before ordering.

Mike Guy on 05/17/2023 07:45am
Shot the first couple of boxes today. The rifle is a new Henry Original Iron Frame. The rounds all feed and eject smoothly. Should have bought more as these are a perfect cartridge for the Henry Original. Made in America or not made at all Thank You Buffalo Bore !
Daniel Rosso on 05/06/2023 05:10pm
Love this stuff. Works great in my 1st generation SAA. Nice to have authentic ammo, especially when ammo and brass for the 44 Winchester is so hard to find.
Caleb Montoya on 03/29/2023 11:19am
I absolutely love this round. I shot it out of my Winchester 92, I love the sound it makes going down range, it's very satisfying to shoot and hear.
Barry Scott on 06/05/2022 10:38am
I used the 200 grain hard cast .44-40 to harvest a mature whitetail last November in my current production Winchester 1892 SRC . One shot in the shoulder at 40 yards was all it took. Accurate and deadly, enough said.
Jack Lucking on 04/01/2022 10:47am
Great Company and Ammo. Shoot the 44-40 in my New Original Henry rifle. Great people at Buffalo Bore Ammo !!!!
Blake Hayes on 03/29/2022 07:22pm
Absolutely great ammo in such a classic cartridge, love the buffalo bore ammo, and the company as well. Super fast and friendly service to shipping. Thank you buffalo bore!!! Looking forward to buying a few more boxes of the 44-40 in a week
Kevin W Ramsey on 02/10/2019 12:12am
I shoot a lot of SASS matches. Since I carry 3 SAA's for matches, I wanted ammo that would work for defensive uses. I bought 3 boxes of the 185 gr hollowpoints.
They're one of the most accurate rounds I have fired.
Dan Beard on 03/09/2018 12:08pm
Shot extremely well out of a Winchester (Miroku) 1866. Love this load!

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