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Old November 4, 2012, 11:53 AM   #1
rebs
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load data for 45 acp 185 gr jhp ?

I am trying to decide on a load for my Colt 1911 using 185 gr jacketed hollow points for practice and self defense. Does anyone have a recommendation ?
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Old November 4, 2012, 09:01 PM   #2
BDS-THR
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I use Remington Golden Saber 185 gr JHP bulk bullets and WSF - works well for my Sig 1911 and M&P45 (BTW, I prefer to use factory JHP for SD/HD for various reasons).

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Old November 4, 2012, 11:42 PM   #3
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After much angst, my recommendation on 185's is that life is too short to load bullets that will make your hair hurt, your teeth bleed and your sitten' muscles ache.

185's are what convinced me to stick to 230's.
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Old November 5, 2012, 12:23 AM   #4
BDS-THR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammer Six
185's are what convinced me to stick to 230's.
I like 230 gr FMJ and shoot a bunch of 200 gr SWC for range practice but load Remington GS 185 gr BJHP +P due to the muzzle energy of 534 ft/lbs. I use bulk GS bullets to load comparable POA/POI rounds for range practice/drills.

Winchester 230 gr FMJ
Muzzle Velocity: 835 fps
Muzzle Energy: 356 ft/lbs

Remington UMC 230 gr FMJ
Muzzle velocity: 835 fps
Muzzle energy: 356 ft/lbs

PMC 230 gr FMJ
Muzzle velocity: 830 fps
Muzzle energy: 352 ft/lbs

Remington Golden Saber 185 gr BJHP +P
Muzzle velocity: 1140 fps
Muzzle energy: 534 ft/lbs
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Old November 5, 2012, 06:56 AM   #5
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Thank you for the replies, but what I was looking for was a reference point to start with a hand load for these 185's.
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Old November 5, 2012, 08:27 AM   #6
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I load a fairly soft shooting 185 grain MG JHP bullet with WST powder. It is a very accurate load. I use 5.2 to 5.4 grains of powder depending on OAL. It makes a great range load. Montana Gold bullets really are designed for accuracy rather than defense. I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of even range ammo. WST in this load is also fairly clean burning. If you want to load for self defense you probably would want to use a slower powder like WSF to get more speed with without additional pressure..
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Old November 5, 2012, 08:37 AM   #7
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Rebs, get a reloading manual from the manufacturer of your chosen components. Working backwards in that fashion (from a manual I'd purchased) led me to discover several components that I now use regularly.

Even if I was to decide that I have too much hair, and therefore need to use 185's as an inducement to yank it out by the handful, a manual is where I'd go for reloading data.

The good part about the internet is that everyone can post a pet load to it.

The bad part is that everyone can post a pet load to it.

There's no way I'd take a load off the internet.

I don't pay any attention to foot-pounds or other specious claims of nuclear devastation when choosing bullets.
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Old November 5, 2012, 08:41 AM   #8
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I have a reloading manual that list starting and max loads, just wondering what others maybe using, not that I would just take a load from someone and use it without working up to it. I was given some reloads in 223 ad 45 acp, I pulled them because I wouldn't use someone else's hand loads.
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Old November 5, 2012, 08:46 AM   #9
buck460XVR
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Quote:
I have a reloading manual that list starting and max loads

That's all you need, altho I would recommend maybe at least one more or going to powder company websites for their on line reloading info. There are no "magic" loads found on the internet that aren't already in the manuals.
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Old November 5, 2012, 10:11 AM   #10
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I agree. Only God is perfect. Human beings make mistakes, and reloading manuals are written by human beings. So you need a cross check. A good rule of thumb is to check three sources and use the lowest starting load among the bunch.

The Hodgdon reloading site has a lot of data. Unfortunately they are having some sort of contractual problem with Olin over the Winchester brand in that testing that is supposed to be updated by Olin periodically for liability purposes has not been done, so Hodgdon has started dropping Winchester load data where the last test date isn't current enough. For the Hodgdon and IMR brands they are current, though.

You can also buy and use QuickLOAD as another opinion. Again, like any other load data source, it's not to be trusted by itself unless already verified the behavior of the component combination in your weapon. A chronograph for feedback is a necessity with it, IMHO.

In most instances you can also call the bullet maker and ask for a recommendation.
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Old November 5, 2012, 02:08 PM   #11
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I load and use Hornady 185gr XTP. I push it with a max load of Ramshot Silhouette, per Ramshot's online load data. My Chrono says 1130fps from my 5" barrel and 60fps less from my 4".

I use to burn 10.5gr of AA#5 to do the same thing, but I'm kindof liking Silhouette now.

Both are low-flash powders in my application.
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Old November 6, 2012, 06:47 PM   #12
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This load shot well in my SIG. I have a keg of AA#5 so I had to see how it would do.


SIG SAUER P220

185 Speer Gold Dot 9.5 grs AA#5, Lot DM WLP (brass) Mixed Military
6/19/2011 T = 88 °F

Ave Vel = 980
Std Dev =15
ES = 46.5
High = 1004
Low = 957.5
N = 8
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Old November 9, 2012, 07:28 PM   #13
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5.8gns of W231 loaded to 1.210 oal works for me. I use Zero JHPs and pick up brass. I have gone as low as 5.4 and up to 6.2 gns. Works in my Sig P220 and 1911.
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Old November 9, 2012, 07:34 PM   #14
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i use almost exclusively 185 gr jacketed and have had great luck with 4.1 gr of bullseye. very low recoil but very consistent. some guns will cycle properly with a load of 3.7 gr which will be lower recoil for target shooting but not recommended for much else.
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Old November 9, 2012, 11:18 PM   #15
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For a Nosler 185 jhp I load 6.2gr of W231 for a Colt 70's ser.
For a self defense load I use 230gr ball.
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Old November 10, 2012, 12:26 AM   #16
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I hope you don't have neighbors. I've got a Nosler book, a Hornady book, and a Barnes book. I also checked the powder manufacturer's wewbsites. I believe Barnes and Nosler will also post reloading data on their website. Only book I have I couldn't get online was the Hornady one.

I'll also second the not using handloads for SD. YMMV but I've heard enough people say it's opening a can of worms if you ever, God Forbid, did have to use it.
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Old November 10, 2012, 01:47 AM   #17
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Quote:
I hope you don't have neighbors.
I hope if you shoot something that needs killing you need to have the right tool to get it done.

Last edited by joneb; November 10, 2012 at 08:17 PM.
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Old November 10, 2012, 02:16 AM   #18
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That's what I was thinking. Ball for a house in the middle of nowhere, hollow point for the city with a neighbor two walls away...
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:26 AM   #19
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My records indicate I haven't loaded 185gr JHP since early 2001, but when I did it was Montana Gold Bullets with 5.9-6.0 gr of W231 under them. I loaded a few to 6.7 gr, but must not have liked them since I only did that once.

Looks like I shot the 500 I bought and didn't buy any more.

I believe Winchester data at the time was 5.1 to 6.1 W231 under a 185gr JSWC and 6.2 to 6.8 under a 185gr JHP
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Old November 16, 2012, 06:56 AM   #20
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I am at 5.5 of unique with my 185 JHP bullet, this seems to shoot very well and is accurate on silhouette targets out to 25 yds. How many of you feel that is a good load or do I need to keep working up ?
As for self defense, it is a factory made JHP bullet, hand loaded to less that a factory load. It could not be construed as a monster killing hand load, quite the contrary its a mild hand load, right ?
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Old November 16, 2012, 03:19 PM   #21
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Once you shoot it can you prove it was a light load? Or what exactly was in it? Have you had a lab analyze the dispersal pattern for burned and burning powder out of that load, so they can accurately determine the distance of the shot at what not? I'm not saying don't handload your defensive rounds, I'm saying that just because you tell Officer Smith that it was a light load, doesn't mean he, or anyone else is going to believe you, or that you can scientifically prove it. (or that you necessarily can't either...)
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Old November 18, 2012, 06:14 PM   #22
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5.5 grains is not particularly high for that powder with that bullet weight. The Alliant site has a Speer Gold Dot HP 185 grain bullet seated to 1.2" COL loaded with 8.2 grains of Unique.

Masaad Ayoob describes a case he testified in for which he suggests the light load is what contributed to a murder conviction. It was failure of adequate powder stippling to appear that contributed to the prosecutor and later the jury deciding that what the defense says was a suicide with a very light target load was actually a shot fired from a greater distance, and therefore was a homicide rather than a suicide. That's oversimplifying, but that was the gist of it. On the other side of the argument is that the only way the situation could have been prevented was for the home to have no light target loads in it anywhere, an unlikely situation for a target shooter. All you can advise in that situation is that if you have someone suicidal in your home, lock all the guns up and don't give them the combination to the safe.
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Old November 19, 2012, 07:08 AM   #23
rebs
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After reading all the replies I am leaning toward using a factory load for CC. No point in asking for trouble and raising questions about the type of ammo used. I will use my reloads for the range.
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Old November 19, 2012, 07:26 AM   #24
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Quote:
No point in asking for trouble and raising questions about the type of ammo used.
HOGWASH!!
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Old November 19, 2012, 06:06 PM   #25
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So you are saying he should ask for trouble?

Actually, from a criminal law standpoint this is one of those things that you'd think no sensible prosecutor would care about. If the self-defense is legitimate then it shouldn't matter if you used a battle ax or a punt gun or a kitchen sink. Whatever is at hand should be fair. The problem is more about the prejudices against gun owners in some jurisdictions. If you defended yourself with a handload in Utah, or in most of Texas or Wyoming, it shouldn't be a problem. If you did it in New Jersey, NYC or Boston, though, I'd not be sanguine about the handload issue not being brought up. I'd call your local prosecutor's office and ask how he feels about what ammunition CCW permit holders have in their weapons, and let his feelings be your guide from the standpoint of criminal liability.

Then the other issue is whether or not the criminal or his family will sue you in civil court. There they only have to convince a simple majority of the jury that you had malicious intent.
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