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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action? (Read 693 times)
S99VG
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How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Jun 10th, 2021 at 11:43pm
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And this is just an academic question but I would appreciate some discussion on just how strong the Stevens 44 action is, or isnít.  Some say it will take no more than a 22 rim fire but could the action and the pins it relies on take the force of a low pressure center fire round?  Iím curious what experiences forum members have had with this action and many thanks in advance for your attention to my question.
  
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Cbashooter
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #1 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 12:17am
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I have a 25-20  single shot,38-55 (with lugged hammer) and 25-20 wcf.all shot at the low end of pressure and have stood up fine.i.think 18-20,000 cup is safe long term but I'm no expert.
  
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S99VG
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #2 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 9:23am
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38-55.  Wow, that seems pretty large.  Thanks for the information.
  
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marlinguy
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #3 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 9:31am
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I've owned 44's in .38-55, .32-40, and .44-40, all originals in those calibers. All were tight when I bought them, and like Cbashooter, I shot them loaded to lower pressure loads with no problems.
I'd agree with the lower 20,000 pressure range for most CF loads.
  

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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #4 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 9:53am
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If you are going to build a rifle, I would seek out a 44 1/2 if you want a Stevens. With that said, I have a 44 in .25-20 ss I have no problem with shooting all day.
  
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40_Rod
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #5 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:00am
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It is important to note that a standard 44 and the 44 Schuetzen action are two different actions. Although similar the second has a lug to help with pressures the walls are also thicker than a standard 44 action.

40 Rod
  
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KWK
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #6 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:48am
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40_Rod wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:00am:
... the 44 Schuetzen... has a lug to help with pressure...


I'm not familiar with that version. Could you describe it further? 
  

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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #7 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 12:10pm
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KWK wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:48am:
40_Rod wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:00am:
... the 44 Schuetzen... has a lug to help with pressure...


I'm not familiar with that version. Could you describe it further? 


Notice the lug at bottom of hammer to help lock.up
  
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oneatatime
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #8 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 12:52pm
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Anyone have a spec of the different action thickness?
  
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S99VG
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #9 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 2:58pm
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Cbashooter wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 12:10pm:
KWK wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:48am:
40_Rod wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 10:00am:
... the 44 Schuetzen... has a lug to help with pressure...


I'm not familiar with that version. Could you describe it further? 


Notice the lug at bottom of hammer to help lock.up


Very good to know and thanks
  
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KWK
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #10 - Jun 11th, 2021 at 4:17pm
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Cbashooter wrote on Jun 11th, 2021 at 12:10pm:
Notice the lug at bottom of hammer to help lock up


I see, turn it into something like a rolling block. Thanks.
  

Karl
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #11 - Jun 12th, 2021 at 1:04am
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Iíll play the bad guy and say it can be fine with tailored handloads. I would not shoot anything I didnít load in one.

Chamber pressure and bolt/breech block thrust are two different issues. The potential pressure on the block and pins with a 38-55 at 20,000 psi is very similar to an off the shelf 22 Hornet.

The 22 Hornet experiment in a 44 action only lasted a couple years for good reason.

I do shoot a couple of 44ís, you just have to pay attention. The flip side is with the number of available powders and staying at cast bullet velocities, there is no reason to have to stress the 44 beyond its limits.
  
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waterman
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #12 - Jun 12th, 2021 at 3:45am
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I have one in .28/30.  I shoot 11.4 gr of 4227 and a breech-seated 140 grain Hoch bullet, cast 1:30.  Seems to work just fine. Has for a long time.  I've noticed that some of my original UMC cases have had their primer pockets enlarge to the point of being useless.
  
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #13 - Jun 12th, 2021 at 10:49am
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My thanks to everyone.† This is all good stuff.† Has anyone ever had the pins bend or bust?† And are there any warning signs of an over used action like cracks in the receiver?† I'm relatively new to single shots and my ability to assess the condition of a rifle is pretty much limited to how it looks and how tight the mechanism locks up.† But I would assume that there are also other details to look out for when determining if a rifle has been over stressed.† †
  
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marlinguy
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Re: How Strong/Weak is the Stevens 44 Action?
Reply #14 - Jun 12th, 2021 at 11:37am
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The only thing I've seen with the 44 action is pins wearing enough to result in lever droop. 
As others mentioned, I'd not build up a 44 for most CF cartridges, but wouldn't be against owning and shooting one already built. But a 44 1/2 is a much better choice.

But beyond the heavier hammers used on some CF Stevens 44's, there are also different 44 action shapes. The early actions with the sharp internal 90 degree corners were later changed to a more rounded internal corner to strengthen them. That one little change made the later receivers improved over the earlier receivers.

  

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