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Old October 21, 2000, 09:43 AM   #1
Hal
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I'm loading my first batch of 9mm's and using Unique as a starting load. 5.8 gr under a 124 gr lead bullet. I've weighed it 4 times, and checked the scale 4 times, and it comes up the same each time. The case seems awfully full, almost to the point of compressing the powder. Is this correct? Should a charge of Unique fill a 9mm Luger case this much?
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Old October 21, 2000, 10:34 AM   #2
Intel6
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most likely yes. Unique is considerd a medium burning pistol powder which means you typically use more of it. It is most commoly used in reload for big cases like the 45 Colt because it takes up more space in those big cases. Typically you use a fast burning pistol powder for the 9mmm which fills up the case allot less.
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Old October 21, 2000, 10:36 AM   #3
Jamie Young
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It should say in your reloading manual that it is a COMPRESSED POWDER CHARGE. Every once in awhile you'll run into it with reloading. According to my Lyman reloading book a 5.3 is a Compressed Powder Charge with Unique. So 5.8 is going to be even more compressed. I've used compressed powder charge with 7.62x39 rounds and Didn't have any problems.
Let me know how you do with that charge? I don't reload 9mm yet but I use Unique for my .45acp. What type of Pistol are you shooting?


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Old October 21, 2000, 04:38 PM   #4
Hal
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Soda Pop.
This is going to be primarily used in a CZ75B, and possibly in a Browning Hi Power. I'll try it first in the CZ75B.
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Old October 21, 2000, 05:14 PM   #5
bergie
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RAE,
Where did you find that load listed? Sounds a little on the warm side (for a starting load) to me. Just did a quick check in a couple of books and couldn't find many loads using Unique and a 124 lead bullet, The Hornady manual maxes it out at 5.0 grains which should be around 1100 fps. The Alliant material that I have gives a max of 6.0 grains of Unique for a 125gr. lead bullet. Either way, 5.8 is up there, for a starting load I would back it off a little.
I use Unique quite a bit for 9mm., in most of my loads, 115 grain bullets mainly, I keep it down around 5.0 anyway. I like to use Unique because it nearly fills the case, making it impossible to accidently double-charge a case. I am sure that 5.8 grains would be "awfully full."
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Old October 21, 2000, 05:25 PM   #6
Nukem
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Unique is a "high density" powder in the 9 which also protects one from a double

I'd also back that load down a touch.

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Old October 21, 2000, 07:07 PM   #7
Hal
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Bergie,(and Nukem)
I'm with you. One of the reasons I like Unique is because of the bulkiness. I'll back the load down a bit to 5 gr and see how that works. FWIW, the info came from both posts here and the Alliant website. The Alliant web site lists a load of 6.0 gr for 1100 fps. I want something around 1000 fps at 30K of pressure, but with a bulky powder like Unique for starters. After some prelim, I plan on switching over to Bullesye or Universal for my final loads.
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Old October 21, 2000, 07:20 PM   #8
Stephen A. Camp
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Hello. The amount of Unique you mention does nearly fill the case. When trying to work with 90 gr bullets a time back, I couldn't get the "allowable" limit into the case without a drop funnel which is normally reserved for rifles. I've tried 6 gr Unique with cast bullets and while OK, accuracy was better with 6.9 gr Blue Dot. A most accurate load for the HP or CZ consists of Hornady 124 gr XTP over 6 gr Unique. LOA ~ 1.11" and average velocity is about 1240 ft/sec. The cast bullet/Blue Dot load averages about 1160 ft/sec from a Browning. Best.
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Old October 21, 2000, 07:27 PM   #9
Stephen A. Camp
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Hello again. Sorry! The cast bullet load I mentioned was for 125 gr. The other posters gave good information. 5 gr Unique with a cast bullet will frequently do what 6 will behind a jacketed one. 6 gr Unique, while not at all dangerous in decent cases in decent guns will likely cause quite a bit of leading. Best.
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Old October 22, 2000, 10:33 AM   #10
Hal
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Opps! Sorry to mislead in the first post. That should have read 125 gr lead instead of 124.
Thanks to everybody for the suggestions and advice.
Anyhow, for a bit of an update. I loaded 6 rounds using 5 gr of Unique under the 125 gr lead bullet. 5 gr left enough room in the case to where a compressed load wasn't a concern. All 6 functioned 100%. I didn't test the load for accuracy yet, just functionality. Recoil was very pleasant out of the CZ. Same old dirty Unique though. Still, dirt and all, Unique is my favorite powder.

[This message has been edited by RAE (edited October 22, 2000).]
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Old October 22, 2000, 06:01 PM   #11
Nukem
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You want to see a dirty 9mm, just shoot some Wolf. I think that stuff is loaded with nitrated horse sh*t
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Old October 31, 2000, 06:20 PM   #12
Yodar
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I switched from Uniqe to Alliant Power Pistol which is 5% slower and MUCH cleaner.

I never need to exceed 5 gr w/ 124 gr cast bullets.

Muzzle flash above 5 gr.is exciting! Cops wouldnt like it

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Old November 1, 2000, 10:18 PM   #13
Powermwt
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RAE, I've been loading 125gr LRN for my Sig 226 for a number of years with 5.4gr of Unique with a vel of 1115. Mild enough and mine has little leading. MWT
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Old November 2, 2000, 01:01 AM   #14
AlbertaCanada
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I load 115JHP Remington bullets on top of 4.1 grains of Green Dot and it cycles 3 Browning Hi-Power (two 1943FN's and a '44 Englis Mk1*) pistols quite nicely. The more powder, the worse the accuracy gets. I suppose it depends what the round is to be used for. Seating depth of the bullet to give a MIN. cartridge overall length is critical though.
The compressed load you mention sounds right.
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Old November 2, 2000, 03:34 PM   #15
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some military cases have less powder capacity
if thats what your using ?
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Old November 2, 2000, 05:49 PM   #16
Hal
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Thanks for the help. I loaded 200 rounds of 125 gr lead over 5 gr of Unique and fired most of it last weekend. It seemed to work Ok, but wasn't real accurate compared to some old PMC 115 gr FMJ I had. No leading, 100% function and shot pretty close to point of aim. All in all it's(the 5gr loading) Ok. Nothing special, just OK. I think I try the next batch with Bullseye or possibly Win 231.

zot,
I was/am using a mixture of brass, but no military as far as I could tell.(Is S&B considered military?)
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Old November 3, 2000, 12:35 AM   #17
alan
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RAE:

I had used 5.2 grains of Unique in both a Browning Hi-Power and a Star Model 30M (the all steel model), with no noticeable problems. Also, I was using a real mess of brass, military,, including some of the WW2 Canadian brass, as well as commercial.

Muzzle velocity, as I recall was generally 1125 to 1150 f/s, bullets were hard cast lead, 125 grain, sized .357" dia. Actually, the 10 twist barrel usually found in 9mm pistols is not that great, accuracy wise, with lead.

If memory serves, some years ago, Smith and Wesson changed their 9mm rifling twist from 10 to 18.75, standard for 38 caliber. Lead bullet accuracy improved greatly, with group size reduced by something like 60% or so, as I recall.

Re compressed charges, I once pulled down some Lake City, 7.62mm Match Ammunition, otherewise known as .308 Win. There was 41.5 grains or so of a stick powder, looked like 4895, but who really knows. When I reseated the original bullets to original overall length, you could both feel and hear the powder "crunching". The ammunition shot quite well, both "before and afterward".

[This message has been edited by alan (edited November 03, 2000).]
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Old November 3, 2000, 01:07 AM   #18
Steve Smith
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RAE, if you're picking up load data from "reliable" sources that aren't load books, you should always decrease the load by 10% no matter what the person tells you about it being "light". After you reduce the load, then you can adjust the load after you determine how much pressure it's developing in your gun. Every gun is different, and what may be "light" in mine may be enough to blow your hand off with your gun. Chrono the loads ifthey feel warm in order to keep an eye on pressure. Speed will rise wtih pressure, and if it's going faster than the source says it should, then you need to start being real careful.
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