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Old April 19, 2010, 05:22 PM   #1
zippy13
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Have I been overcharging?

For years, I've been using a .45-ACP case as a powder dipper for .44 (.45) cal BPCB revolvers. A .45-ACP case is smaller than a LEE 1.9 dipper and delivers about 20 gr of Pyrodex P or about 27 gr of FFFG Black Powder. I always thought these were light/moderate loads in a '58 New Army.

Imagine my surprise when I checked out Pietta's instruction manual: Pietta recommends a FFFG Min-Max load of 12 to 15 gr under a .454 ball. Have I been overcharging all these years, or is Pietta being super conservative?
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Old April 19, 2010, 06:16 PM   #2
ClemBert
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Hodgdon's recommends a load of 35 grains (910 fps) of Pyrodex P for steel .44 caliber 1858's. For Triple Se7en they recommend 20 to 25 grains (536 to 763 fps) which is the rough equivalent of 23 to 29 grains of FFFg BP.

The Pietta lawyers want to make sure you don't sue them thus the mouse fart loads listed by them. Give Cabelas a call and I bet they give you some much larger numbers than Pietta.
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Old April 19, 2010, 06:48 PM   #3
zippy13
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Initially I suspected some error in the conversion from metric grams to US grains, but that's not the case. However, they don't differentiate between brass and steel frames.
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Old April 19, 2010, 11:44 PM   #4
Model-P
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You cannot overcharge a steel framed cap-and-ball revolver with black powder. I saw those numbers on the Pietta brochure and had to wonder why they have no faith in the strength of their own product. I almost returned the doggon thing because they had me worried But, they work fine on 30 grains, no worries now!
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Old April 20, 2010, 11:52 AM   #5
Chris_B
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I use 24 gr Pyrodex in my Pietta "NY Met Police" .36 caliber revolver
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Old April 20, 2010, 12:20 PM   #6
zippy13
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Chris, you're double Pietta's recommended "mouse fart" load of 9-12 gr below a .375 ball. With their loading data so far off the norm, I wonder how much of the other information provided is bogus and there just to placate Pietta's legal staff.

If you're like me, you've noticed newer instruction manuals have a state by state list of mandated safety requirements. Most of them are redundant. Haven't we carried political correctness too far?… In California we're told to keep guns away from children in English and in Spanish!

Last edited by zippy13; April 21, 2010 at 04:49 AM.
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Old April 20, 2010, 04:27 PM   #7
Hawg Haggen
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I use 15 grs. of Pyrodex under a conical in my .36 Remington Police with brass frame. I use 35 grs. of Pyrodex with round balls in all my .44 steel frames.
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Old April 21, 2010, 07:22 AM   #8
madcratebuilder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zippy13
Imagine my surprise when I checked out Pietta's instruction manual: Pietta recommends a FFFG Min-Max load of 12 to 15 gr under a .454 ball. Have I been overcharging all these years, or is Pietta being super conservative?
Pietta is conservative to a fault. 12-15grs in a .44 is a very small mouse phart. That would be a light load for a brass frame revolver in .44.

It would be interesting to know how many times they or their distributors have had legal action against them. I can't blame them for protecting themselves from the U S courts and bottom feeding lawyers. (no offense to any lawyers out there)
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Old April 22, 2010, 12:07 AM   #9
Model-P
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And here's the thing, if the load is so light that the plunger cannot seat the ball against the powder, that is a dangerous event in itself. I wonder if Pietta has had any blown cylinders from their ridiculously low "maximum" powder charge instruction. They really should make that the "minimum" charge if they are concerned about lawsuits!
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Old April 22, 2010, 12:34 AM   #10
andrewstorm
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12 -15 grain?

This obviously is a missprint,my old pietta manual,stated 30gr with ball,and 25gr with conical,unless they have started using chinese steele with very low carbon content,hell even my old cva 36 cal pp max load was 25 grain with brass frame open top,sounds like the load for a bronze derringer 31 cal
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Old April 22, 2010, 03:50 AM   #11
zippy13
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Model-P, you're correct. Pietta warns against not having the ball seated against the powder; however, they make no reference to using a filler with their light loads. Just to be sure, I just re-downloaded their manual. Here's the loading data chart, you can see for yourself…

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Old April 22, 2010, 09:10 AM   #12
ClemBert
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Just for comparison versus Uberti. From the Uberti manual:

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Old April 22, 2010, 09:16 AM   #13
zippy13
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ClemBert, it seems the folks at Uberti are in better touch with reality than their competition.
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Old April 23, 2010, 03:05 PM   #14
zippy13
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Update

My neighbor got a new Pietta replica Remington 1858 this morning. The Pietta instructions call for the mouser fart loads, but the Cabelas manual is in keeping with the real world, and lists 35 grs.
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