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Old March 5, 2011, 04:34 PM   #1
XferMan
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Do I have a safe load?

I am new to loading, did my first 25 reloads today, and it only took me 3 hours:barf:. Anyway, I am using 9mm 115 fmj rn with winchester 231 powder OAL 1.09". When I looked up a recipe in my lyman 49th edition it said to start at 3.5gr, and when I loaded a round it looked awfully low so I went online to search for more recipes. When I did they all said it was low. The recipe I went with is OAL 1.125, 4.5gr win 231. Will I blow myself up when I go to the shooting range? Also, what is a good additional manual to pick-up?



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Old March 5, 2011, 04:46 PM   #2
testuser
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I have Sierra, Speer, Hornady and Lee and generally perfer the Hornady book. According to Hornady 7th edition the maximum charge is 4.5 grains of W231 with a 115 grain bullet. Whenever possible, I like to use data from the powder manufacturers, usually available for free online.

It's not dangerous per se, but it's not the best practice to start with a maximum load, so best to check for signs of excess pressure as you shoot. I load by volume, so I don't load max charges, when doing so it's best to weigh each charge.
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Old March 5, 2011, 04:49 PM   #3
overkill0084
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http://www.hodgdon.com/PDF/Hodgdon%20Basic%20Manual.pdf
See link above.
Looks like your probably ok. I show 5.1 (Speer GDHP) as max according to Hodgden's data. IIRC, I think that 4.5gr. 231 is my friend's pet load for his 9mm w/ 115 gr FMJ.
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Old March 5, 2011, 04:52 PM   #4
Brian Pfleuger
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Starting loads are supposed to be low.... and the look of them is not what makes them "low".

There are powders that you could not cram enough of into a 9mm case to cause an over-pressure problem if you used a wooden dowel and hammer to pack it in and there are powders that may be well over maximum safe pressure and the case will be half full.

Start at your manuals STARTING load and work up from there. Load a mag full at STARTING load, and increase by .1, .2, or .3gr increments, depending on the difference between START and MAXIMUM.

No one can tell you what is safe in your gun. There are too many variables.

Start low and work up.
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Old March 5, 2011, 05:15 PM   #5
Snakedriver
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I've been using 4.6 grains of W231 in my 9mm reloads with 115 gr. bullets for many years. All my 9mm's love them. It's a very accurate full power load.
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Old March 5, 2011, 05:23 PM   #6
jeepster11
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yep

Start at the starting load and work your way up. That's the safest way to do it
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Old March 5, 2011, 05:42 PM   #7
XferMan
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Thanks for the help: One more question

I think I'll buy the Speer manual. The powder seeming low in the case is what made me question the recipe. On another forum some people thought the pistol's action might not work properly with 3.5grains. Could this happen? And what's with the big disparity between manuals?
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Old March 5, 2011, 05:47 PM   #8
Brian Pfleuger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XferMan
The powder seeming low in the case is what made me question the recipe. On another forum some people thought the pistol's action might not work properly with 3.5grains. Could this happen?
Yes, it could happen. It's not really dangerous though unless it causes a "squib", which is when a bullet gets stuck in the barrel. Even a squib is not dangerous unless you do not realize it happens and you shoot another bullet behind it.

This is why load development is generally only a magazine full or so of each charge weight. If a load is so obviously low that if won't even cycle the weapon, you simply go on to the next charge and disassemble any unused rounds.

It's unlikely that a published load would not cycle your weapon.
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Old March 5, 2011, 06:55 PM   #9
XferMan
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Thanks, I'm going to shoot these then stick with the manual.
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