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Old March 22, 2007, 01:13 AM   #1
Mr Beta
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Bullseye Vs. Unique

What's the difference in these two powders?
I've seen both of them used in many instances.
I hear people swear by one or the other but which one has the edge if any?
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Old March 22, 2007, 02:04 AM   #2
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Bulleye is faster burning and often used in small pistol loads, it uses little powder, so it lasts a long time. Unique is also a fast powder but slower than bullseye and used in larger quintiles, but both are on the fast side. If you use 7 grains of Unique, you would use about 3 or 4 grains of Bullseye, on average. They serve different purposes and one should not replace the other with the same charge. You can find the right powder load in any loading manual.
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Old March 22, 2007, 02:06 AM   #3
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Interesting. I use unique now because someone gave me a few #s of it.
I'll give bullseye a shot.
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Old March 22, 2007, 02:11 AM   #4
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Bullseye is great and economical; just make sure you consult a loading manual for your cartridge. I use Bullseye in my light shooting 38 special practice loads.
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Old March 22, 2007, 02:13 AM   #5
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I've heard nothing but good about it and in all my manuals, it uses less.
Thanks.
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Old March 23, 2007, 11:09 AM   #6
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I use Bullseye for .380 and 9mm Makarov loads, does good.
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Old March 23, 2007, 11:48 AM   #7
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As said by others, Bullseye is easier to get an double charge or overload with. Be careful.
Also, Unique is 'dirtier' than Bullseye. --[Tends to leave more crud in your action] And doesn't meter as well because of the flake shape.
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Old March 23, 2007, 02:20 PM   #8
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But isn't Unique a flake powder too?
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Old March 23, 2007, 03:08 PM   #9
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They are both flakes. Not sure what your point is? Dirt is a function of how completely a powder burns and how much graphite and non-flamable additives it has? I shot Bullseye for many years in match shooting. Have tried Unique, but in the low pressure loads found too much unburned material left behind, cluttering the bore. As pressure is increased, it burns more completely. Works fine in some reduced rifle loads, in particular.

Unique was introduced in 1900, and the current form of Bullsye in 1913, (though an older form from the 1890's was made from waste finings from other powders). Modern Bullseye was used by the government for .45 ACP at one time. 5.0 grains still copies the current military SR7970 load for 230 grain ball exactly.

If I were starting over, however, I would probably start with Hodgdon Universal Clays (not to be confused with Hodgdon Clays or Hodgdon International Clays). Universal Clays is inbetween Bullseye and Unique in burning rate. In the above example of 230 grain hardball, 5.0 grains of Bullseye, 5.3 Grains of Universal Clays, and 5.7 grains of Unique all provide the same ballistics. The Universal Clays is by far the cleanest burning of the bunch. It seems to be less fussy about metering consistently in my measures. The only drawback is, having no graphite, you will want either to run powdered graphite through your measure once or rub the plastic parts with with a clothes dryer sheet to keep static under control in dry weather. It is worth it not to have your hands covered with graphite every time you visit the range.
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Old March 23, 2007, 03:46 PM   #10
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So do you use Universal Clays? If so, is it because of the clean burning? Is there any benefit of a slower burning powder?
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Old March 24, 2007, 07:57 PM   #11
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powder

you need fast burning powder in short pistol barrels.I use 700x in mine.unique in my 45 colt.my 45 acp functions perfect with 3.6 of 700x my 38 target load is 2.8 of 700x.
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Old March 24, 2007, 08:16 PM   #12
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Yes, I use Clays for very short barrels (2.5" and less), Universal Clays in 3" to 6" target loads, both because they are clean and seem not to cause powder measures to jam up as often as some of the others do. Unique's large flakes are notorious for being difficult to meter consistently from a powder measure.

The advantage to slower powders is higher potential velocities for maximum pressure loads, but they don't burn very efficiently at lower pressure loads. Universal Clays is not enough slower than Bullseye to matter in this application. It is very close to Winchester 231 in burning rate. 231 is another popular target shooting powder.
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Old March 24, 2007, 10:59 PM   #13
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Bullseye is one of the finest powders ever made for light, target loads. Unique is a good, versatile powder for general purpose loads.

There are better, more modern powders out there now, but Bullseye and Unique work just as well today as they did 75 years ago.
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Old March 24, 2007, 11:32 PM   #14
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So unique and bullseye aside, is there another powder(s) that you'd recommend for around the same price range? And what benefits can I expect from this powder.

The only thing I really use Unique for is the 9mm and the .45acp.
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Old March 24, 2007, 11:46 PM   #15
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Maybe I'm lazy, but my two staple powders are unique and H110. Unique for 9, 38/357, 40, 45 and H110 for 44. They always worked for me so I never saw a need to change.
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Old March 25, 2007, 01:21 AM   #16
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Actually those are my two staple powders as well.
Unique for the 9mm and the .45 and H110 for the 44 and the 50ae.
I do believe that the Unique burns a little dirtier than others that I've used.
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Old March 25, 2007, 05:27 PM   #17
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I load all 9MM and .45 to +P or +P+. I use only HS-6. (Although I have used Power Pistol in the past with good results) If I were loading 9MM and .45 to factory spec, I would use Universal, AAC#5 or Unique.
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