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Old January 21, 2013, 01:04 PM   #1
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Hey all. Just getting started on loading .40S&W for my Beretta 96 and Glock 22 and well as a close friends XD-M.

Looking around for bullets, I can't find much in stock. I use Berry's plated 115gr RN for my 9mm loads. Was thinking of using their 155gr or 165gr plated FN. Anybody have a more economical bullet to use that's plated/jacketed?

For powder I'll be using Power Pistol. Good charge weight to start at for any of the suggested bullets? Right now I don't have a caliber specific load book, only Lyman's 49th to browse, which isn't too expansive with load data.

Primers will be CCI 500 small pistol. COL to try, or replicate a factory cartridge? (Federal white box RT165)

Still don't have dies so I'm not in a huge rush. Just asking around for good load recipes that will cycle all 3 pistols reliably.

Thanks in advance!


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Old January 21, 2013, 01:19 PM   #2
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For bullets try "Precision Delta". I usually get their 180gr fmj's. Their prices are excellent and there's no shipping charges. For powder (accurate and mild recoil), look at W231. Usually a load of 4.5gr gets the job done nicely.
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Old January 21, 2013, 01:21 PM   #3
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In a .40S&W ....I prefer a 180gr ....and Berry's plated bullets are ok ( better than Rainier ballistics - which are thinly electroplated and vary too much in weight) ....but I prefer Montana Gold. Montana Gold has a website and you can buy direct ...but Berry's are a little cheaper. Montana gold is a true jacketed bullet.

I prefer Hodgdon powders...and either Universal or TiteGroup have been good powders for me in .40S&W.
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Old January 21, 2013, 01:49 PM   #4
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I've loaded many thousands of Berry's plated in 180 grains... I did a slew of their flat points and have since changed to their rounded shoulder design. WHY did I change?! I clicked the wrong thing when ordering, and ended up with a different slug...so I simply transitioned to it.

I run these slugs with Power Pistol, though I've experimented with Universal, too.

I also use the CCI-500, small pistol, non-magnum. Sorry, can't offer and advice or experience with slugs lighter than 180gr in .40 S&W.
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Old January 21, 2013, 11:18 PM   #5
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I'ver recently started reloading the this round for my glock 23 and have had smooth sailing with 180gr/CCI small pistal primer/5.8gr Unique/COAL 1.125....good luck and happy shooting!
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Old January 22, 2013, 10:12 PM   #6
xLPlushy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martys View Post
For bullets try "Precision Delta". I usually get their 180gr fmj's. Their prices are excellent and there's no shipping charges. For powder (accurate and mild recoil), look at W231. Usually a load of 4.5gr gets the job done nicely.
Thanks for the heads up on Precision. Their prices are excellent. And considering I'm only loading for economy they're looking like my best candidate for jacketed pistol bullets. They're even cheaper than Berry's! I'm going to switch to them for my 9mm as well.

Locally I can't find ANY powders or primers. So all I have is what's left of my pound of power pistol until this whole Obumma thing blows over. I'd like to get my hands on a 4 pound jug or power pistol and some of that W231. I've heard from a fellow reloader that I work with that its a good consistent powder to use with the snappy .40. Especially since I have one of them Glocks that everybody seems to say explode randomly-(in all honesty the amount of chamber support looks the same as the amount of support that my Beretta 96 has.)

Also one more question-I mistakenly bought a box of CCI 550 small magnum pistol primers-misread the box at cabelas, got home and said oh $&@! Wrong primers. Haha. Is there an unsafe difference between the 500 and magnum 550 primers i.e. can I use them for a 9mm loading with 115gr FMJs and 5.1gr of PP and a COL of 1.152"??

BigJimP- I swear by Hodgdon/IMR powders for all of my rifle loads. I decided to jump outta that comfort zone when I started with pistol cartridges. Went with Alliant power pistol because of the lower required charge weights(middle of the road really-
9mm 115gr hornady xtp-
5.2 gr of PP at about 1050fps vs
7.0gr of AAno7 at about 1000fps
vs 3.9gr of bullseye at about 1000fps
All per my load book from LoadbooksUSA), good reviews on the powder, and the fact that it can be used for every handgun cartridge I will be loading for. I like it so far. I want to try other powders eventually when I get more storage and a bigger and dedicated loading bench set up inside my house instead of it being outside in an uninsulated shed.

Sevens-
I've loaded 250 with Berry's 115gr HBRN for my 9mm. Like the performance. And my original load worked up on Hornady's 115gr FMJ transferred over to the Berry's quite well. Worked from 5.0 to 5.5 gr of PP and it liked the 5.1 load that I have been using for my first 200 loads using the Hornady bullets. Very pleased with them.




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Old April 18, 2013, 11:50 AM   #7
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Sorry to bring up a once thought dead thread, but I have yet to find load data that helps me feel confident in my load work up. I've finally gotten bullets from PD and now I'm anxious to get back to shooting!


I'll be using the following:
Alliant Power Pistol
165gr Precision Delta FMJ FN
Mixed HS brass
CCI 500 Small Pistol primers
COL will be 1.125"-1.135"

Out of my manuals (Barnes' no4, Sierra's 5th, Hornady's 8th, Lyman's 49th, and Alliant's 2012 handbook) I can only find info out of Lyman's 49th and my Alliant manual. Lyman's tells me max is 7.0gr and Alliant says 7.8gr max.
That kind of variation doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy.
I've found some data from handloads.com as well showing 7.2-7.5gr charges.

Can anybody with a Speer or Lee manual help me out if there's data in those manuals??
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Old April 19, 2013, 09:43 AM   #8
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Yes some manuals have very differing charges in them. As a rule of thumb I generally put more trust in manufacturers data, in this case Alliant.

Are you still using Power Pistol? I hope so because it's excellent all the way around, good performance and very consistent. Your 165gr Precision Delta FMJ RN is probably shorter than most 165gr JHP bullets, and Alliant recommends 1.125", so that would be okay to work with.

I've posted this in other threads, but from my 4" Glock 23, 8.0gr (.2gr over book max of 7.8gr) averaged 1,154 fps with a 165gr Speer Gold Dot. I've messed with Power Pistol a lot in the .40 S&W and .45 Super, and it's never let me down. 1,150 fps is right on the money as for what "normal" 165gr .40's run, or I should say claim, most factory 165's actually hover around 1,100 fps.

If I were you, I'd start at around 7.6gr and work up to 8.0gr in .2gr increments keeping a 1.125" OAL. I'll think you'll be satisfied.
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Old April 20, 2013, 05:11 PM   #9
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IMR 700x is easier to find and works well in light loads in my Beretta 96. I shoot 140gr TC in front of 4.8gr IMR 700x FSP 1.109 OL at 750 fps. Nice comfortable load to shoot.

This load works for me. Please work your own loads up from published info and never rely on information posted here.

Like you, I could not find the components I really wanted so used what I could find.
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Old April 21, 2013, 01:45 PM   #10
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

I am still using power pistol. It's all I have and nothing else is available. Like I said, I've been having trouble finding load data for the bullet weight/powder combo I've chosen/have been stuck with.

Power pistol performs wonderfully in my 9mm and the fact that it will work in all my handgun cartridges that I load for is why I chose it. Just need to do more research.
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Old April 21, 2013, 03:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
Alliant Power Pistol
165gr Precision Delta FMJ FN
Mixed HS brass
CCI 500 Small Pistol primers
COL will be 1.125"-1.135"

Out of my manuals (Barnes' no4, Sierra's 5th, Hornady's 8th, Lyman's 49th, and Alliant's 2012 handbook) I can only find info out of Lyman's 49th and my Alliant manual. Lyman's tells me max is 7.0gr and Alliant says 7.8gr max.
That kind of variation doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy.
I've found some data from handloads.com as well showing 7.2-7.5gr charges.

Can anybody with a Speer or Lee manual help me out if there's data in those manuals??
Many times your best answer is simply going to be to take in as many trusted sources and build your own guidelines. Also remember that we don't EVER start with max loads anyway, so the differences you are seeing in the two sources you referenced aren't such a big deal as you'll be starting lower than both anyhow... (right?!)

I really like Alliant powders, but their current load data available on the web is seriously lacking. Compared to the web resource that Hodgdon provides -- well, Alliant sucks. And their current printed guides offer exactly the same info on their (lousy) website. My favorite source for Alliant data is their last printed guide before all the load data was dumbed down in to what they publish now. That would be their 2005 Reloader's Guide. It doesn't have everything, but it offers much more than their current data.

In fact, it doesn't list a 165 gr FMJ bullet in their .40 S&W data.
BUT... they do list a 170 grain XTP. This is good because it's 5 grains heavier in weight -AND- it's a JHP, both of which give you a built-in little safety buffer when what you are actually using is a 165gr FMJ.

For my needs at my bench, published 170gr JHP data from a trusted source is safe data for a 165gr FMJ.
The '05 Guide says 7.3gr of Power Pistol is a max load producing 1,105 FPS and 33,300 PSI with a 170gr XTP in .40 S&W.

If I had YOUR components at MY bench, I'd build 10 rounds at 6.5gr, ten more at 6.8gr and ten more at 7.2gr and I'd be diligent in looking for signs of pressure with these loads.

I would do one thing differently, however--
I wouldn't use mixed head stamp brass. I know many folks do, but I don't care to do that. I may use 12 different head stamps, but they will not be mixed.

It's long been my experience that a slew of mixed head stamps just gives me a slew of different feedback in my press handle, especially when it comes to bullet seating. I want consistency as that breeds accuracy -- and more importantly, it breeds confidence. Confidence that not only have I done my best to produce accurate loads... but confidence that I have consistent case mouth tension and I needn't worry about unintended and unnoticed bullet setback. Especially in a round such as the .40 S&W which is not at all forgiving in this manner.
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Old April 21, 2013, 04:03 PM   #12
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I like 180 grain bullets over 5 grains of Universal.

Works for jacketed or plated bullets. I have used a lot of Berry's plated bullets in the past. For now I cast my own.
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Old April 22, 2013, 12:00 AM   #13
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Quote:
What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?
One that makes the cases land on the ground 5 feet away.

Change the recoil spring or change the powder charge.

If they land closer, you run the risk of a jam.
If they land further, you run the risk of the slide hammering the frame.
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Old April 22, 2013, 09:25 AM   #14
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevens View Post
Many times your best answer is simply going to be to take in as many trusted sources and build your own guidelines. Also remember that we don't EVER start with max loads anyway, so the differences you are seeing in the two sources you referenced aren't such a big deal as you'll be starting lower than both anyhow... (right?!)

I really like Alliant powders, but their current load data available on the web is seriously lacking. Compared to the web resource that Hodgdon provides -- well, Alliant sucks. And their current printed guides offer exactly the same info on their (lousy) website. My favorite source for Alliant data is their last printed guide before all the load data was dumbed down in to what they publish now. That would be their 2005 Reloader's Guide. It doesn't have everything, but it offers much more than their current data.

In fact, it doesn't list a 165 gr FMJ bullet in their .40 S&W data.
BUT... they do list a 170 grain XTP. This is good because it's 5 grains heavier in weight -AND- it's a JHP, both of which give you a built-in little safety buffer when what you are actually using is a 165gr FMJ.

For my needs at my bench, published 170gr JHP data from a trusted source is safe data for a 165gr FMJ.
The '05 Guide says 7.3gr of Power Pistol is a max load producing 1,105 FPS and 33,300 PSI with a 170gr XTP in .40 S&W.

If I had YOUR components at MY bench, I'd build 10 rounds at 6.5gr, ten more at 6.8gr and ten more at 7.2gr and I'd be diligent in looking for signs of pressure with these loads.

I would do one thing differently, however--
I wouldn't use mixed head stamp brass. I know many folks do, but I don't care to do that. I may use 12 different head stamps, but they will not be mixed.

It's long been my experience that a slew of mixed head stamps just gives me a slew of different feedback in my press handle, especially when it comes to bullet seating. I want consistency as that breeds accuracy -- and more importantly, it breeds confidence. Confidence that not only have I done my best to produce accurate loads... but confidence that I have consistent case mouth tension and I needn't worry about unintended and unnoticed bullet setback. Especially in a round such as the .40 S&W which is not at all forgiving in this manner.
I have noticed this with Alliant. I usually like to find 3-4 sources that have the same or relatively close max charge for a given bullet weight/type so I have a real good idea of what's a safe point to work up to.

I'll clarify what I meant by mixed headstamp - using many different headstamps all sorted out to individual "lots" of a single headstamp, Just like you said. I've noticed varying feedback in the press handle while loading 9mm. I only meant that I won't be using a single headstamp for all my loading.

Last edited by xLPlushy; April 22, 2013 at 10:02 AM.
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Old April 23, 2013, 09:33 AM   #15
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Went out to cabelas to pick up a 10mm/.40S&W load book and stumbled upon some WSF and HP-38. Bought a pound of each. I'm hoping I find a load using power pistol and I'm happy with that load, if not I have the others to try now. If I don't use either with the .40 then I have other cartridges to put them to use.

Hopefully I'll get a good look at the load book and get a batch put together tonight so I can do testing over the weekend.
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Old April 24, 2013, 04:03 PM   #16
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Titegroup ! Min load is great. It was the first I tried in my .40 it will be the last. Very clean burning .
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Old May 28, 2013, 08:19 AM   #17
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

TiteGroup! Found it! Made up 5 each at the starting charge for Power Pistol, TiteGroup, WSF, and HP38. Now I gotta get out and test them.
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Old May 28, 2013, 09:06 AM   #18
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I run 6.0 gr Power Pistol with 180 gr FMJTC. It suits me, but its not like I have tested everything. It seemed to me that PP was a good powder to share with 9mm reloading and even usable on .45 ACP if necessary. HP-38 or W231 have never been options for me, because I never found it in bulk quantities/prices...a pound to try that I'd have to mail order with HAZMAT fee, is not an acceptable option, because part of W231's claim to fame is it yielding the most rounds per pound and thus cost per shot. Any surprise why it is popular? Many swear by its performance, but come on, we know the best value sells first.
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Old May 28, 2013, 06:12 PM   #19
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I use same load

6.0 pp and 180 g platted....
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Old May 28, 2013, 06:22 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xLPlushy
I have noticed this with Alliant.
I'm a little late to the party but I thought you might want to know how to find more data from Alliant. For some reason, a lot of their data doesn't show up if you go straight to their Reloader's Guide. Instead, go to their Products link and select the appropriate options until you get to the page for the individual powder. On that page, you will see a link titled "View All {Insert Powder Name}" Recipes. Clicking that link sometimes gives you data that is not listed in the "Guide". At the very least, it's easier to use this method to get data specific to the powder, rather than having to search through the various bullet weights they list to see if any of them list your powder.
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Old May 28, 2013, 06:37 PM   #21
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Brian, I think I've gone that route for PP data from their site, it was a while ago and I can't rightly recall if I went to the online guide or to the product page like you said, but I wrote all the info I could find on a sheet of paper that got misplaced later when I took my boxes of brass out process. I also have their 2012 printed guide in addition to a .40S&W/10mm loadbook from LoadbooksUSA, and a whole bunch of other manuals.

The words of wisdom are always appreciated!
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Old June 3, 2013, 08:08 PM   #22
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Finally settled myself of some starting loads to see which powder I like best.

Gonna make 5 of each to test
HP38-4.7gr
TiteGroup-4.6gr
Win WSF-6.2gr
Power Pistol-6.8gr

CCI 500 SP
Speer cases
1.130" COL
165gr Precision Delta FMJ FN

Will be tested out of my Beretta 96 Centurion before I move onto testing them in my G22. Once I find an economy load I like, I'll chrono them and post up again.

Last edited by xLPlushy; June 4, 2013 at 11:49 AM.
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Old June 4, 2013, 09:20 PM   #23
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Finally! Got 20 of them loaded up. Took them out and shot them tonight. All else aside, judging groups only, I think I like HP38 best. Eliminated power pistol due to flash and higher charge weight. Gonna make some more with HP38, TiteGroup and WSF to try again.

Here's a link to my Dropbox with all the scanned targets as well as a few note sheets. All of the testing was done at 21 feet with my Beretta 96 Centurion.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/84y7p2otyn...2C%2021-48.pdf

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1370398712.603654.jpg
The above photo was taken on a test shot of power pistol.

Last edited by xLPlushy; June 5, 2013 at 07:36 AM.
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Old June 5, 2013, 06:32 AM   #24
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millions served

sized sorted case

CCI500

180g TCJ-FP Rainier

start 5.2g Power Pistol (6.0g)

OAL 1.130" +/-.005"
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Old June 5, 2013, 08:59 PM   #25
xLPlushy
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What's a good load recipe for .40 S&W?

Did a second round trial in the Beretta with all but PowerPistol, and tested my load of HP38 and TiteGroup in my G22 as well. Most functioned the guns ok. Had a few lockback failures. Confirmed that there is much less flash with HP38/TiteGroup than PP.

Here's a link to my Dropbox to view the second trials shot targets and some notes-https://www.dropbox.com/s/af5x1u5bal951vn/.40S%26W%20Second%20Round%20Powder%20trials%2C%20Beretta%2096%2CGlock%2022%20%20-%20Jun%205%2C%202013%2C%2021-39.pdf

What are some factors that would cause horizontal stringing??
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