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Old March 18, 1999, 03:19 PM   #3
Walt Welch
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 3, 1998
Location: Alamo, CA
Posts: 424
bookie; your prices sound very good. Buy enough primers and powder so that you can stick with the same lots (once you select a powder and primer that you like).

The American Rifleman did a study on velocity and bbl. lengths some years ago. They concluded that the powders that will produce the highest velocities in longer bbls. produce the highest velocities in shorter bbls. I know that this doesn't seem reasonable, but it was the case.

Further, if you use a faster powder for maximum loads, you are risking a great deal. The pressure obtained tends to be more affected by the typical variables; powder lot, primer brand and lot, brass brand and lot, bullet brand and lot, handgun used, temperature, etc. It is easy to obtain overpressure trying to make maximum loads with fast powders.

I had a near death experience when in my 20's; there was this guy shooting his M 29 .44 Mag, and couldn't hit the target. I tried it out, and got all the shots in the black, but noticed the loads were really hot. He then told me how much Bullseye he was using, and I am sure I blanched. I hurriedly put my stuff away and got out of there.

I use 2400 or H-110 in my 3" SP-101, and have had good results. Likewise in my M 66 6" bbl.

Be extremely wary of using primer condition in an attempt to judge pressures. I was shooting some hot, but not max loads in my .357 (essentially the old Elmer Keith .38 Spl load which was really MUCH too hot). The recoil, and extraction seemed in line with the expected pressure. I looked at the (new) primers, WSPM's, and was horrified to see cratering, flow into the firing pin hole, and flattening. I went back to the identical loads I had loaded and fired, except with my usual Rem 5 1/2 small pistol Mag primers. These primers, as I had noted before, showed absolutely NO signs of over pressure; in fact, they looked like .38 Spl mid range loads! All things considered, I think that the pressure was the same in the two different loads, but the primer cup was softer on the WSPM's. Had I been trying to judge pressure with the Rem's, I would have been badly misled. So, be careful.

Hope this helps, Walt
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