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Old February 13, 2012, 12:02 PM   #1
Southern Shooter
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260 Grain .454 Casull...Can't Reach The Velocity

I have been trying to find a general-purpose load using the Lee .452-255-RF. The trick is this load will be fired from a 2.58" barreled Ruger Super Redhawk Alaskan .454 Casull.
LEE 452-255-RF.jpg

I have been running mainly 10 grains of IMR Trail Boss under this bullet. My average velocities are hovering only in the 840's FPS. I have read where using a 270 SAA bullet has reached 1,000 FPS with the same powder from the same gun. What am I doing wrong? http://www.gunblast.com/Ruger-SRHAlaskan454.htm

**Is that enough velocity to be considered a woods-protection round with this design of bullet?

**Any suggestions to get it faster?

**Are there any suggestions on an alternate powder?

**Any steps I need to consider in the construction of this round?

Thanks........
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Last edited by Southern Shooter; February 14, 2012 at 01:00 PM.
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Old February 13, 2012, 02:08 PM   #2
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I shoot a 240 grain .429 bullet in my Ruger Blackhawk at about 970 fps (.44 speical) and about 1300 fps (.44 magnum) and find that either of those loads are plenty for a general purpose woods load. I shoot a lot more of the .44 Special loads than I do the magnum loads.

I would think that your bullet traveling at the mid 800s would be potent medicine for anything we find in these central Louisiana woods. You might load that Casull with 10 grains of Unique and see if that doesn't increase the velocity a little bit.
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Old February 13, 2012, 02:22 PM   #3
Southern Shooter
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10 grains of Unique.........

Hello Paw Paw...I did that just this past Saturday. Well, I actually loaded only 4 rounds as an after thought. It did surprise me, though. The 4 rounds averaged 1,004 FPS.
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Old February 13, 2012, 06:25 PM   #4
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You might also give some 2400 a try. Somewhere around 18-20grs should put you just past the 45 Colt +P loads for Rugers or Contenders, and in the 454 case should work out pretty well. I am shooting the 300gr Lee from my Raging Bull with 20grs and getting right at 1100fps from the 8.375" barrel. I must add it is a peach to shoot as well. Might be a tad more in your shorter barrel, and lighter revolver though.

I'm using the same mold to drop mine at 260grs from my alloy, and using 10gr of Unique in my Ruger 45 Colt. Velocity is right at 1000fps from the 7.5" barrel. Very sweet load for sure.
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Old February 14, 2012, 01:03 PM   #5
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Mike / Tx......

Quote:
I'm using the same mold to drop mine at 260grs from my alloy, and using 10gr of Unique in my Ruger 45 Colt. Velocity is right at 1000fps from the 7.5" barrel. Very sweet load for sure.
Mike,

Are you having any problems with leading? What lube are you using? What do your cylinder throats mic at as compared to bullets you are loading?

Thanks
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Old February 16, 2012, 01:16 AM   #6
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It's going to be very hard to get more than 1,000 fps out of that short barrel without a lot of blast and recoil.

Why not go to a heavier bullet, say 300-325 grains, and keep the velocity down around 900. The heavier bullet, especially with a strong crimp, will help your powder burn better while still being controllable in recoil.
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Old February 16, 2012, 07:33 AM   #7
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black mamba....

I was considering that option...and, still am. That would be a good balance of weight and velocity. However, I have a 360 grain mold that I am getting an average of 940 FPS from the snub-nose with 22.5 grains of W296. So, I am having some problems justifying buying another mold.

45-360C.png
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Old February 16, 2012, 10:40 AM   #8
Mike / Tx
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Quote:
Mike,

Are you having any problems with leading? What lube are you using? What do your cylinder throats mic at as compared to bullets you are loading?
Thanks
Well i will be totally honest, I haven't had any leading as of yet with either the 45 Colt or the 454 except one streak, about an inch long, with the first 5 rounds through the 454.

This said, I took a tip from a fellow on Castboolits, and have swabbed the clean bores with a patch smeared with Alox to sort of prelube them prior to firing any rounds through them. It worked with the 454 so I figure it can't hurt with any of the rest. I have tried a couple of different mixes, one of the better ones was Felix Lube, and using straight Alox, but didn't like the tackyness or the longer dry time. I have since been using the 45/45/10 formula and not had any issues. I lube once before sizing and again after, on both the plain base and the GC'ed versions. Nothing has presented itself with either.

On the throats, again to be honest, I haven't got anything to accurately measure them other than calipers, and I have found they aren't very reliable. I initially was shooting some Cast Performance 265's through the 454 and while GC'ed they did not show any issues even when driven over 30grs of 296. From the 8.375" barrel they rocked along easily at around 1700fps. When I checked their diameter they were sized to .452 so that is where I went with everything else I have run through it.

In similar fashion, I had some Oregon Trail bullets in 200 and 250gr which I loaded up initially in the 45 Colt just to go shoot the thing when I first got it. After close to 100 rounds through it, all that was really noted was a bunch of powder residue and possibly a few pieces of lead on a patch, but the bore came squeaky clean with hardly any work at all.

Since, I have run several hundred of my own boolits in various weights through it with similar results. While some of the softer alloy I tried, did leave a bit more what I call traces, none of them have left what I would call abnormal leading. I shot some from my 41 years ago which I know for a fact was severe, and actually had tinsel looking strings hang out the muzzle after only a couple of shots.
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Old February 26, 2012, 07:10 PM   #9
Southern Shooter
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Ruger SRH Alaskan .454 Casull....Range Report---02-25-2012---BLUE DOT POWDER

Just thought I would pass this on. I was only able to do a small sampling with Blue Dot because I was called into work before I could complete my planned loading session. I will load up some more before too long.

Lee 452-255-RF weighing at 262-264 grains

15.0 grains
FPS:
989
975
1007
1040
------
Ave- 1002 FPS
SD- 28.09

15.5 grains
FPS:
1032
1043
1033
1012
------
Ave- 1030 FPS
SD- 12.99

16.0 grains
FPS:
1128
1105
1085
1060
------
Ave- 1094 FPS
SD- 28.95

16.5 grains
FPS:
1086
1107
1124
1123
------
Ave- 1110 FPS
SD- 17.8

No leading at all. All easy to shoot.

Oddly enough, the tightest grouping was the 16 grain string with a SD of 28.95. I am going to include that load again in the next batch of shooting to see if that can be replicated.

Will be upping the load in the next session. 17 - 18 grains???


Thanks
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Old February 26, 2012, 10:03 PM   #10
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Are you using gas checks?
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Old February 26, 2012, 10:09 PM   #11
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No Checks

This is a plain-base bullet. No checks.
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Old February 26, 2012, 10:14 PM   #12
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Have you thought about using them? I was wondering if you could get away with pushing your bullets faster if you used them, since that is your goal.
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Old February 27, 2012, 07:26 AM   #13
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Gas Check Mold

Actually, I would like to stick with plain-based molds, for now. I am not against the idea of a checked mold...but, I just want to see what I can do with this, first.
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Old February 27, 2012, 12:49 PM   #14
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At those velocities, you are basically using your Alaskan as a .45 Colt. It's kind of a snooze when I fire .45 Colt out of my fulll sized Super Redhawk compared to full house jacketed .454.
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Old February 27, 2012, 12:50 PM   #15
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That 360 grain bullet looks beautiful--any reason why you don't want to use that? Maybe too heavy for what you want?

If it were me, Blue Dot would be one of the last powders I'd use for any kind of normal use load. I've had the unburned flakes find their way under the ejector star and tie up the gun way too often. I've even had it happen in some pretty stout .357 and .44 mag loads with heavy bullets--combinations where you'd think the higher pressure wouldn't leave much in the way of unburned powder flakes.

If you're still looking for powder recommendations, I'd probably try Power Pistol or 2400. Power Pistol wouldn't give you much case fill but I'd still try it and see how it performs.
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Old February 27, 2012, 07:22 PM   #16
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A Beautiful Bullet

AlaskaMike,
Please see http://thefiringline.com/forums/show...88#post4980588 .

I love that bullet. I think in the Deep South there is not much need for it, though. However, if that bullet at roughly 950 FPS, is not considered over-kill here I may start using it more often.
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Old March 6, 2012, 11:02 AM   #17
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Update: More Range Time With Ruger SRH Alaskan .454 Casull and Blue Dot Powder

03-03-2012

I had time to put more rounds down range. Again, it was the Lee 452-255-RF, water quenched, dropping from the mold at 262-264 grains. Lube was a mix of Lee Liquid Alox and Penetrol. No leading was noted. Some of the lube could be seen smeared in the bore but cleaned out very quickly.

16.0 grains
FPS:
1105
1144
1119
1101
1102
------
Ave- 1,114 FPS
SD- 18.2

17.0 grains
FPS:
1140
1186
1174
1136
1162
------
Ave- 1,159 FPS
SD- 21.5

17.5 grains
FPS:
1201
1199
1190
1219
1160
------
Ave- 1,193 FPS
SD- 21.6


Hope this is helpful to someone.

Thanks
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Old March 6, 2012, 06:53 PM   #18
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Quote:
I have been running mainly 10 grains of IMR Trail Boss under this bullet. My average velocities are hovering only in the 840's FPS. I have read where using a 270 SAA bullet has reached 1,000 FPS with the same powder from the same gun. What am I doing wrong?
Odds are you are doing nothing "wrong". Same charge weight under a heavier bullet will produce higher pressure, and higher velocities. If the 270gr seats deeper than the 260 gr pressure will increase also due to decreased case capacity, thus equaling higher velocity. Could be bullet profile or could be your not getting enough pressure to expand the bullet base and seal the bore. How did you come up with the start load? Trailboss can completely fill the case below the bullet and still be safe. As others have said, TB is not know for velocity and in big bores is generally used for bunny fart loads. Even Unique should give you well over 1000fps with that bullet.
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Old March 6, 2012, 07:01 PM   #19
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I learned new terminolgy today. "Bunny Fart".
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Old March 6, 2012, 07:33 PM   #20
Southern Shooter
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Unique and Lee 452-255-RF

Here are some numbers with Unique.

Lee 452-255-RF...264 grains, plain-base, 10.5 grains Unique, LLA mixed with Penetrol.
FPS
977
1000
940
951
965
968
-----
Ave-966.8


Lee 452-255-RF...264 grains, plain-base, 11 grains Unique, LLA mixed with Penetrol.
FPS
1022
1044
1040
1003
1020
992
-----
Ave-1020
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Old March 6, 2012, 08:11 PM   #21
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QuickLoad provides some relative options to consider

Cartridge: .454 Casull Magnum (SAAMI)
Bullet: .452, 255, LEE 452-255-RF
Useable Case: 31.921 grain H2O
Cartridge OAL: 1.680 inch = 42.67 mm
Barrel Length: 2.5 inch

Matching Maximum Pressure: 56,875 psi

Code:
Powder	       Wt(gr)	%fill	V(fps)	%Burn
Norma R123	xxx	102	1204	91
POWER PISTOL	xxx	91	1202	96
Accurate No.9	xxx	91	1194	82
Vihtavuori 3N38	xxx	103	1191	92
Vihtavuori 3N37	xxx	92	1170	100
Vihtavuori N350	xxx	95	1167	100
Alliant HERCO	xxx	105	1164	100
Alliant UNIQUE	xxx	95	1152	100
Vihtavuori N340	xxx	92	1136	100
H-Universal	xxx	89	1115	100
Vihtavuori N330	xxx	87	1110	100
Acc Solo 1250	xxx	95	1108	100
Acc Nitro 100	xxx	93	1087	100
GREEN DOT	xxx	94	1085	100
Vihtavuori N320	xxx	88	1076	100
Acc Solo 1000	xxx	93	1075	100
Alliant RED DOT	xxx	98	1066	100
Hodgdon Clays	xxx	93	1018	100
Power Pistol Looks awfully, awfully good.....


.

Last edited by mehavey; March 6, 2012 at 09:11 PM.
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