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Old January 26, 2010, 12:19 AM   #1
MikeO89
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800-X for 9mm?

The only powder I have right now is IMR 800-X. I want to reload 9mm for a Ruger SR9. I have Berry's 115 gr plated bullets. The Hodgdon Table lists between 4.5 gr and 5.3 gr of 800-X. What do you guys think the results will be using this powder and what powder would you recommend for what I have?
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Old January 26, 2010, 09:37 AM   #2
Sevens
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I don't have that powder and I've not ever used it. I do know that it's a much loved powder in 10mm circles as it gives terrific power in that round. And the two calibers run a similar pressure so I can imagine it would work well in 9mm.

However, it's not popular. And as far as I know, it doesn't meter well... and as long as that is true, it likely won't EVER be popular in 9mm. When you insist on using a powder/caliber combo that is not popular then you will forever be lonely when it comes to load data. And that's okay as long as you accept it. You end up being the test monkey for most of your loads. Not a big deal as long as you are safe and observant and you know what you are doing.

In looking at Hodgdon's data, the levels you quoted are for a LRN, which is the appropriate data to use for a plated bullet. And the listed pressure on the published load is safely under max for 9mm. And the high load listed shows a velocity under 1,200 fps which Berry's recommends. So I think your data is good to go. If it were me, I'd build 15 rds at 4.7, 15 more at 5.0 and 15 more rounds at 5.3 and pay VERY close attention to how they shot, felt and what the brass looked like and go from there.

However, if you aren't comfortable with that, then simply pony up the $20 or $25 for a pound of powder that is popular and then you will have access to scads of load data and other reloaders' experiences. Seems like a small price to pay, at least to me.

In 9mm, popular powders are W231, Bullseye, Power Pistol, AA#2, AA#5, Universal, Titegroup and maybe a half dozen more.

It's a popular cartridge and quite easy to find powder and load data for. (unless you pick a powder that's not popular!)
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Old January 26, 2010, 11:52 AM   #3
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I've tried 800X in 9X18, 9X19, 40SW, and 45ACP; using a variety of charge weights with a variety of bullets. It works best with heavier bullets at or near max. Light loads were very dirty with lots of unburned powder.

I didn't try it with magnum primers, but think it should do better with the mag primers for starting loads and closer to max loads.
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Old January 26, 2010, 12:10 PM   #4
MikeO89
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I will definitely be experimenting with different powders. I just bought the one when I got some primers. Just took a shot really in the decision.

Quote:
Light loads were very dirty with lots of unburned powder
I have already reloaded and shot about 500 rounds of 44 magnum where I used this powder. I loaded some really light loads and saw what you just stated (quite a bit actually).

I can get away with it on the revolver but I don't want that to happen in the 9mm auto. I can see I'm probably going to learn some things in reloading the hard way. What I mean by that is I just reloaded about 120 rounds of 9mm (that I found at the range) with 4.6 gr 800-X powder, 114 gr Berry's plated bullets. I know I SHOULD have just reloaded a few to see how they shot but reloading is so much fun and patience wasn't my best virtue in this case. If I would have had 500 cases, I would have probably reloaded all of them! Jeez. I hope I'm not stuck with a bunch of funky loads here.

Last edited by MikeO89; January 26, 2010 at 12:26 PM.
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Old January 26, 2010, 12:40 PM   #5
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In the coming years a bullet puller, either kinetic or collet style, will become a dear friend.
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Old January 26, 2010, 01:21 PM   #6
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I have used it in 45 acp and 38 spl. Its dirty and does not flow very well.

AA#2 is my goto for 9mm. Flows like water and it burns good in the small case.

I hate those little bullets Old age has made my hands like two baseball mits. It never helped that I have hands like a brick layer
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Old January 26, 2010, 01:28 PM   #7
MikeO89
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Quote:
In the coming years a bullet puller, either kinetic or collet style, will become a dear friend.
Heh heh. I don't have one yet but know I have to get one. I already have quite a few practice dummy rounds I made when I was trying to get the hang of things. I may now have a lot more if those 120 rounds I just made don't shoot right, like too dirty or not working the slide right causing some jams.

There is also the issue of round length. I have boxes of Remington 114 gr 9mm, and Brown Bear 114 gr 9mm. The Brown Bear rounds are noticeably longer than the Remington rounds but neither are as long as the full scale drawing dimentions of the 9mm round that are on the Lee Die Instructions. When I did the reloads, I split the difference between the two in length.

I will be picking up my SR9 tomorrow. Brand new, never fired (by me). Have a few boxes of factory rounds to shoot and then my reloads. Heh heh, I'm wondering how it's going to turn out!

Last edited by MikeO89; January 26, 2010 at 01:35 PM.
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Old January 26, 2010, 01:45 PM   #8
sourdough44
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I just loaded & tested some 115 grn plated bullets in the 9mm, 92fs. I posted some results on the other "FTE" post. Anyway I used 4.2 grns of H Tightgroup & it cycled great & the speeds are listed on the other post. The Hodgdon site has some info with the lead bullets & that's what I used. I also had some loads with win 231 powder, they were low & didn't cycle great & the fps was slow. I'm sure if I upped the charge that powder would be fine. Win 231 gets good reviews for the 9mm.

I used 1.09 col with the 4.2 tightgroup & 115 grn plated bullets.

Last edited by sourdough44; January 27, 2010 at 10:45 AM.
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Old January 26, 2010, 11:22 PM   #9
MikeO89
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I just got some Titegroup. I think this is going to work out ok. I used a bullet puller and undid some of the rounds I had done with 800-X and then redid them with Titegroup. Now I'll have some comparison rounds to check out.

A side question. What do you guys think of 125 gr lead bullets? A little ma/pop shop offered to sell me the only box they have of 500 of these bullets for $30. I paid about $45 plus shipping for 500 bullets of Berry's plated 114 gr.
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Old January 27, 2010, 02:58 AM   #10
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CAUTION: The following post includes loading data beyond currently published maximums for this cartridge. USE AT YOUR OWN RISK. Neither the writer, The Firing Line, nor the staff of TFL assume any liability for any damage or injury resulting from use of this information.

12 years ago I worked up all the common bullets and powders for 9mm to see how much power is possible for concealed carry.

Only 7.7 gr of IMR800X will fit in a 9mm case, without double compression.
11 gr is possible with double compression.

I have gone all the way with 124 gr and 147 gr with 800X in 9x19mm, and no impressive power was reached.
With double compression it does kick hard, but cannot quite beat Power Pistol, which meters better.

800X sucks in 25 acp, 9x23mm too.

6.5 gr 800X can be double compressed into a 380 case, and it is ok for poor case support situations, like the P3AT, but I still like Power Pistol better.

What does work in 9x19mm is Power Pistol.

800X is a wonder powder in 40sw, 10mm, 32 S&W Long, 44 mag, ect.
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Old January 27, 2010, 11:58 AM   #11
MikeO89
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Quote:
Only 7.7 gr of IMR800X will fit in a 9mm case, without double compression.
The max load on the Hodgdon chart is 5.3 gr of 800-X powder for 115 gr lead bullet. Are you saying you are shooting it with 7.7 gr?

I ask this because I'm new to reloading and it's good to know when they say, "Never Exceed Maximum Load", if it's actually an accurate statement or more like a "Read it but it's not really important" kind of deal. That load you talked about is not just a little bit over max, it's a lot over max. If the chart is that far off, it kind of throws the discipline out the window.

Maybe I missed the point you were making.
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Old January 27, 2010, 07:36 PM   #12
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If you are new to reloading, then YES, it's a real statement and you REALLY need to REALLY follow it. The gentleman who posted before you is a longtime reloader and experimenter. He knows going in that he may sacrifice working firearms to further his pursuit of knowledge. He has seen and done things at his bench & range that I will never see from mine and I've been handloading for more than 20 years.

Until you've gotten some miles under your belt and the experience that goes with it...

Until you've seen and identified pressure signs and know how to spot them from a mile off...

Until you fully understand all the variables at play in this game that can collude at the wrong time to grenade your favorite handgun, you need to stick to published loads and never exceed published max.
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Old January 29, 2010, 03:02 PM   #13
Clark
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CAUTION: The following post includes loading data beyond currently published maximums for this cartridge. USE AT YOUR OWN RISK. Neither the writer, The Firing Line, nor the staff of TFL assume any liability for any damage or injury resulting from use of this information.

When I started reloading ~12 years ago, I blew the extractor, extractor spring, hold open, mag follower, magazine spring, and mag bottom plate out of the 9mm.

The work up got to a guppy belly case bulge and a pierced primer, and I just kept working up higher.

That extractor exits to the right at lethal velocities.

What I had to learn was that when I see a pressure sign on the brass, stop the work up, and only consider loads useful that are a safety margin reduced from the threshold of pressures sign... ala Vernon Speer 1956.
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