A unusual .244 H&H belt?


#1

I noticed the cut band just above the belt when I got this round at the April week end Calgary gun show.

I have not seen this on other examples on the internet.

Head stamp 244 top MAGNUM bottom

Glenn


#2

Is it a reload? They could have lathe turned some part of the rim to regulate the head space into the chamber.


#3

No it is a factory loaded cartridge .
It is the same as this one-credit Ammo One.

Pete de Coux sent me a photo of the same cut on two of the three Kynoch .244 H&H rounds that he has.

I need to do more research on H&H ammunition it seems.
Who actually made this cartridge and where.

Glenn


#4

Glenn, these cases were made by Norma and loaded at Kynoch (ICI Ltd).


#5

Forming the belt on a belted case is one of the most difficult parts of the draw process. You can find many cases (of cheaper quality) where there is a definite radius at the belt/body junction. This could affect headspace if the radius was pronounced enough. One easy way to cure this is turn the clearance groove, possibly at the same time that the extractor groove is cut.

The old Ackley Belted wildcats made from 30-06 brass were often found with different widths of belts because of the difficulty in swaging a uniform belt using hand presses. But, since they were wildcats, it was not a big deal since the chamber could be cut to accomodate any belt width.

Belted cases are 20th Century designs that are obsolete, for the most part. There are very few instances where they serve any purpose and most handloaders choose to ignore them and headspace on the shoulder instead.

JMHO

Ray


#6

Glenn,

I should have checked out the 244 sample in my collection. It is the same that the one in the picture ( my box has the same design too). My sample has that band too.

So it is a factory work just to properly regulate the headspace


#7

Chuck Hawks does quite a good write up

chuckhawks.com/244H-H_Mag.htm

I like Chuck he gives a good account of anything in this area of the cartridge world. The real message in the write up though is that it wasn’t a commercial success. Comparatively few rifles were ever made for it so ammo demand would never have been big. I think that’s what we are really seeing with this ammo, its virtually handmade.

Interest in this calibre is probably greater in cartridge collector circles than it ever was in the shooting world. There is and always has been an element that will buy anything that has the word ‘ultimate’ tagged on to it but in reality it was slaughtered by the other 6mm offerings, probably most noticeably the .243 Win which came out in the same year with ballistics only a tad behind the .244.

As Chuck says nobody makes the ammo anymore. I would have thought Kynamco might have but when I checked I found they don’t. That says it all really, I think Bertram still make cases.

Rifles are rare and when they do turn up they are bought more for their rarity by collectors than to be shot by enthusiasts


#8

I think that powders available when the 244 came out were too fast-burning. British didn’t use Cordite for these cartridges, since the very big case capacity for a 6 mm cartridge.Original ballistics with a 100 grains bullet were just a bit greater than 243 Win or 6 mm Remington ones ( about 500 Ft/sec), that are cartridges using much smaller cases.With modern slow burning powders one could greatly outperform original factory ballistics. Just too overbore for that time


#9

Kynoch apparently imported an American powder especially to load the .244, I don’t know which one, but the huge case capacity must have created headaches even so. Looking back it was doomed to failure. Whatever the powder was it used 74grns apparently. Anyone who has loaded seriously will see the problem straight away. You can’t physically burn all that powder to launch a 100grn 6mm bullet in the time available. You are going to be pushing most of it down the barrel and that leads to erratic performance.

The .243 Win has always had a reputation for being an easy cartridge, not fussy about powders, loads, bullets or rifles. People just loved it as soon as they saw it and it was a runaway success. One of the reasons for that is because it has a nearly perfect case size for the calibre.

The .244 I don’t think ever achieved anything like the potential expected of it. It was a lemon, why they didn’t shorten the case I will never know. I guess they were taken with the symbolic image of a big case with a small bullet sticking out of the top.


#10

The 6mm R, aka .244 Remington, is actually a much better cartridge than the .243 W, aka 6mm Winchester. It has a longer neck, sharper shoulder, and slightly greater capacity, and is a handloader’s dream. It failed because of an error by Remington’s sales and marketing people. They envisioned it as a varmint cartridge so it was loaded with light bullets in a slow twist barrel. Winchester, on the other hand, considered their 6mm as a combination varmint/small game cartridge with heavier bullets in a fast twist barrel. By the time Remington realized their mistake, it was too late.

Both the 243W and the 6mmR started life as wildcats. The 243 Rockchucker always was the better of the two, but Big W opted to go with the 240 Page primarily because they already were heavily invested in tooling to make the 7.62mm and .308W brass. A lucky decision on their part, but mostly an error on the part of Big Green. (Not the first nor the last blunder by Remington, BTW)

Ray


#11

The powder that H&H used to load .244 H&H cartridges was Hodgon H-570 a surplus 20MM cannon powder.

Maximum load for 105 gr Speer bullet was 77 gr in Speer # 5 manual.

"A Holland & Holland rifle with Kynoch factory ammunition produced a muzzle velocity of only 3276 f.p.s. "

1955 - The .244 H&H belted rimless magnum cartridge introduced

Glenn


#12

Stonewall

77 grains of powder being consumed in a 6mm bore would not have been kind to the barrel. But, I suppose a guy rich enough to own an H&H rifle was probably not too concerned about barrel life.

The 243W is also considered by many to be a barrel burner, mostly because of the shoulder angle and short neck. I had only one 243W rifle. My other 6mm competition rifles were all based on the 244R case. The barrels on them would last longer than my interest in them. :-)

Ray


#13

Ray, You and I and a number of others who have spent the last however many years experimenting with loads know that you can’t get 70+ grains of anything to light up properly and blow a 6mm bullet down the barrel with a full, and consistent burn. The suggestion that ballistics claims were overstated does not surprise me at all.

It just defies all the laws of how these things work by about 2X times. There will be incomplete burning and reports of excessive muzzle blast support this with the .244 H&H.

The .243 Win, on the other hand, uses about half this amount (of any number of powders) with beautiful consistency. I love the .243, its almost impossible to find a bad load (although you benchresters can be picky) its near on the perfect calibre for people like me. Its not that hard on barrels either as long as you use it for a hunting rifle but all these loads are too hot for target volumes

I am rare indeed in having fired about 4 or 5 .244 H&Hs in my time I have no memory of how they performed. Sighting them in was just a job to me then, I did ten or twelve rifles a day. I just wish I had kept the boxes and the empty cases. I could retire.


#14

I have a certain fondness for the .244 H&H. When I was a young 'un shooting target rifles in .22", 7.62mm and - right at the start - .303" (that dates me…), a friend’s father had one of the H&H rifles in this calibre. It was the first “exotic” cartridge I ever saw, and got me curious about why it looked so different, what other cartridges there might be out there, and so on. The start of a long, slippery slope to where I am now :-)


#15

[quote]The powder that H&H used to load .244 H&H cartridges was Hodgon H-570 a surplus 20MM cannon powder.
Maximum load for 105 gr Speer bullet was 77 gr in Speer # 5 manual.
"A Holland & Holland rifle with Kynoch factory ammunition produced a muzzle velocity of only 3276 f.p.s. "
1955 - The .244 H&H belted rimless magnum cartridge introduced
Glenn[/quote]
Glenn, are you sure that Kynoch loaded this cartridge with US powder? I believe that maybe you are confusing Hodgdon’s H570 with Thunderbird’s T570, which was indeed taken from pulled cannon cartridges.

An article published in 1956 mentions it was loaded with “progressive powder of unspecified British type” (cylindrical shape). According to H&H’s catalog of 1958 the muzzle velocity in a 24" HYKRO barrel was 3500 fps with a 100 gr copper point bullet, which was the only loading available at that time (bullet weight always remained the same). I don’t know when this cartridge was last loaded but there are packets with date codes up to the early 1970’s.


#16

The production of ammo for this calibre by Kynoch almost certainly followed the pattern for the bigger exotic calibres. A batch now and then which became less frequent as time went on. Finally they made ‘one last big batch’ of everything put it into store and gave up. The case making machinery and the dies were sold to Bartrum and the production area was cleared and used for other work.

For IMI it was a time of massive upheaval and reorganisation. Ammunition was such a small part of the overall picture that it was (I believe) considered not worth the space it took up. They were still making .22 and shotgun ammunition under the Eley name but Kynoch just went under.