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Old June 17, 2001, 06:28 PM   #1
Bob C
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Universal Clays

I've been using this powder off and on for a couple of years, but often with cast bullets.

Yesterday I fired 125 or so rounds of .45acp with this with a jacketed bullet in a stainless combat Commander, and the pistol really didn't need much cleaning , other than the barrel. Accuracy was also fine, and the powder meters well for me.

I'm convinced.
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Old June 19, 2001, 04:12 PM   #2
Ala Dan
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Hey Bob,

I just started using Universal Clay's, lauching
cast bullet's in 9m/m, .44 Special, and .45 ACP.
Actually, the .44 Specials are loaded in magnum
case's. I had been using Alliant Unique for years;
but I believe that Hodgdon's Universal Clay's is
the way to go, especially when building mild target loads?

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, Life Member N.R.A.
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Old June 24, 2001, 04:09 PM   #3
solo
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I too have fallen in love with Universal Clays. I used to use AA#5 and thought it was a clean burning powder, but after picking up a pound of Universal Clays my opinion has quickly changed.
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Old June 24, 2001, 08:41 PM   #4
tonyz
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Universal Clays

I will be making Universal Clays my favorite all around powder. Just can't be beat.

Tony
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Old June 25, 2001, 08:05 PM   #5
dick w. holliday
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Hey guys--don't forget the shotgun applications--you can 12-20 and 28 ga with the stuff--Dick
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Old June 25, 2001, 09:11 PM   #6
CD1
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I love it in 12 gauge.
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Old June 26, 2001, 09:02 AM   #7
renaissance7697
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Formulae for Universal CLAYS

What are your "Pet" loads for Universal Clays in 9mm and 45acp
Using 125 L RN (for 9 mm) and 200 LSWC (for 45acp).

(Where did you get them from > ie. what published data did you use as a starting point)

What velocities do you think you are getting?
Have you Chron'd them?

How do you find the "leading" using the "Cast" 9mm versus say FMJ?

I too LOVE Clays ( Both CLAYS CLAYS & Universal CLAYS).

There is however, not much published data using cast lead bullets
The Hodgdon people are not much help
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Old June 26, 2001, 01:49 PM   #8
Johnny Guest
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I Don't Like The Way They Name Those Powders!

It is entirely too easy to become confused between Hodgdon's Clays and Universal Clays. Most loaders seem to call the latter just "H. Universal."

THAT powder, Universal, is almost a weight-for-weight substitution for Alliant Unique, and is reputed to be "A LOT CLEANER." I have mixed feelings about these assertions. First, the "Dirty" aspect of Unique was pretty true back in the days of dead-soft lead bullets, llubricated with the old Lyman Ideal bullet lube, a black, gooey, soft thing that only hardened up somewhere below absolute zero. It would leave a LOT of gunk.

With more modern lubes, the Alox stuff, colored, usually, blue or green, Unique shoots a lot cleaner. The "fouling" experienced in this combinaiton is more of a sooty deposit than narsty fouling. It tends to brush right out, or swabs out pretty well with a dry patch. Even after a couple of hundred .45 ACP lead bullet loads, my usual cleaning routine is one solvent patch and two dry ones. I hit the breech face, feed ramp, and the locking lugs with a nylon brush and call it done.

In actual use, I find that Universal yields slightly less velocity than Unique, all other components being equal. This is not usually a problem for me--they are practice loads only.

As to loads I have used--Universal powder, Winchester primers--

9 mm 124 Rem JHP 4.6 gr. about 1080 fps

.45 ACP 230 LRN 5.8 to 6.0 gr about 840

.45 Colt 255 LSWC 8.0 about 800

The latter two loads are also fine with jacketed bullets.

I've also used a fair amount of Universal in .44 Special cases, using the one-to-one-with-Unique rule of thumb. My loads were way beyond what is currently given as max, so I won't even discuss it here and now. Some other time, when we're dealing with hot loads, and will insert the appropriate bold-print cautionary notes, we can go into those.

Best,
Johnny
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Old June 27, 2001, 12:46 PM   #9
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I was thinking about the Clays family also, there are actually three of them: Universal Clays, International Clays, and Clays.

Has anyone bought the Hogden Manual does it have a good number of loads for their own powder with cast and Jacketed bullets?

I bought the Lyman manual and I was under-whelmed by the number of loads for the .45.
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Old June 27, 2001, 02:04 PM   #10
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Johnny - "I Don't Like The Way They Name Those Powders!"

I couldn't agree with you more. Someone in charge of naming powders at Hodgdon must have had his .... Well you know.

To illustrate how confusing it is, just a few days ago Walt Welch responded to a thread here about a fellow using much too much Clays in a particular load. I responded saying that he was using Universal Clays, not Clays. (Unfortunately both posts were wiped out in the recent database problem.) If someone as knowledgeable as Walt can be confused by the names, think what trouble the novices can get into. Hodgdon should bite the bullet, so to speak, and drop the Clays designation from Universal and International.
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Old June 27, 2001, 03:11 PM   #11
renaissance7697
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Attn: Master Blaster

The Hodgdon load data manual is pitiful
They
1. only ref a very few (mostly hi priced) bullets
2. Only give Maximum Data (No Minimum > so it is impossible to interpolate Velocities at other than Maximum

(The Hodgdon Cowboy Suplement to their Reloader 2000 Load Data pamphlet DOES have some data for hard cast lead > but > only in cowboy calibers)

Hodgdon does make excellent powder
But they act like they don't want anyone to be able to use it.

Most generic manuals are as you noted woefully lacking in Hodgdon data (especially Clays clays>Universal clays>etc.)

I would like to use Clays exclusively
but
I cant get enough of a handle on the formulae to be comfortable

I understand their concern with the Lawyer Stuff but you got to
take a reasonable stand on some things re: CYA vs Telling it like it is.

I have heard it rumored that Clays UNIVERSAL is so close to Unique in characteristics, that Unique recipes can be utilized subsituting Clays UNIVERSAL for Unique, one for one.
If this is close to true > this might be an answer (taking the proper common sense precautions with regard to load data
God knows there is enough data out on Unique.
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Last edited by renaissance7697; June 27, 2001 at 06:31 PM.
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Old June 28, 2001, 10:18 AM   #12
Johnny Guest
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renaissance7697 wrote:

I have heard it rumored that Clays UNIVERSAL is so close to Unique in characteristics, that Unique recipes can be utilized subsituting Clays UNIVERSAL for Unique, one for one.
If this is close to true > this might be an answer (taking the proper common sense precautions with regard to load data
God knows there is enough data out on Unique.


Gee, I just wish it were entirely true.

I know I mentioned the weight-for-weight substitution in my earlier post. It can be a GENERAL guide, in the LOW to MIDDLE loads, but I can't say it is truly safe to do he substitution right across the board. I've just looked through a couple of manuals, and there is enough difference in the top/max loads to cause difficulty. Better to seek out exact data when contemplating the warmer loads. I fully agree, there is not yet enough good data published about U. Clays to make me happy. So the old rule of thumb still applies:

Either use loads published in a reliable source, or start well down and work up slowly.

Best,
Johnny
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