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I'm shooting a 1995 Marlin 444 SS. For my first hand load I wanted something with a flat trajectory. I used a 240 gr. FTP bullet and 49 gr. Of H4198. At 50 yrs I'm dead on. At 100 yards two inches high and at 200 yards 9 inches low.
No rainbows for this guy
 

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I have those little hash marks in my scope (range finding) and I sight dead on with the big crosshair at 100 yards and then I hold the second hash mark on the 2 inch spot at 200 yards and it usually hits it or scares it to death. This is with a 265 gr Hornady FP. The 265 gr Hornady was developed for the 444 Marlin and it is a great bullet. There is nothing wrong with shooting 240 gr xtp's in your 444, it also is a good bullet. I especially like the 240 xtp in my 44 mag rifle. I doubt if a deer would ever know the difference between a 240 or a 265 but if I were hunting larger stuff it definately would be the 265. Ken Watters talks about what a good and accurate bullet the 265 jacketed bullet is in his book on Pet Reloads, that book is so heavy the older I get I have to have help lifting it off the end table. LOL
 

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I wouldn't hesitate to use that load but if you want something that shoots flatter you will have to go lighter and faster. Otherwise you will need to dope your shots or go with a BDC type reticle.
 

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Forget the 240 gr--a 265 gr bullet and H4198 are a match made in heaven. An MO member has used that bullet to kill two grizzes up in Canada.
 
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My rifle loves the 265gr Hornady FP also, however, will be shooting factory 240 gr Rem core locks this week at the cabin. Why? Because I have them. I do not think there is a deer around that will know the difference. If bigger game were the hunt the Hornady 265 gr FP is the choice. I will get it sighted in and may use it this fall, as I have 100 rounds of factory to use. I will gain 100 rounds of once fired brass. By the way, I brought 6 Marlin levers up to play with. From .32-20 to .444, what a hoot.
Have a great day.
Jim
 
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