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Old June 23, 2011, 09:59 PM   #1
Frank_CPL_USMC
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Seeking .45 acp advice

Hey everyone,

New to the site and had some questions pertaining to reloading .45 acp. Any recommendations for power? also does .45 acp primarily use large pistol primers? recommended bullet weight for range time, and home protection (i understand that it is common sense to have two different weights) and if im shooting out of a springfield armory 1911 loaded model and a .45 xd compact, is that okay to use lead bullets? any replies would be outstanding.

Thanks in advance.
Semper Fi.
Frank

Last edited by Frank_CPL_USMC; June 23, 2011 at 10:16 PM.
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:17 PM   #2
Miata Mike
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.45acp usually uses large pistol primers, but there are more small pistol primer cases being used.

I mostly load lead 200 grain semi wad cutter bullets with WST powder. I shoot them in several 1911's and a Ruger P245 with very good results and very minimal leading, if any.

I also load 230 grain plated round nose by Berry's using both Bullseye and Unique powder with good results.

For home protection I would use factory self defense loads, but that is a whole different thread about covering ones backside.
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:20 PM   #3
Frank_CPL_USMC
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Thanks for the reply. In reference to the primers can you tell just by looking at the primer if you compare to a known large primer?
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:34 PM   #4
Miata Mike
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I use a cheap Lee primer pocket tool to give each case a quick primer pocket clean after resizing & depriming, and the large primer pocket end will not fit in the small primer pockets. I have for the most part been able to eyeball the small primer brass as I deprime it.

I throw them in a bag for when I get a few hundred of them to load up.
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:47 PM   #5
Doc Intrepid
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Lead bullets are fine to use for reloads, in both the firearms you listed.

Doc
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:54 PM   #6
RWNielsen
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You might also try Berrys HBRN 185g plated
http://www.tjconevera.com/be45cal185gr2.html (shipped)

I generally use HP-38/W231 for 45acp, it meters great
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Old June 23, 2011, 10:57 PM   #7
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I would say use a Boat Tail for better speed and power. But A Boat Tail is only really good on a rifle round.
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Old June 23, 2011, 11:09 PM   #8
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+1 for W231/HP-38 (same powder). I use 5.0 gr for 200/230 gr lead bullets for accurate target loads. Some prefer 5.2 gr powder charge. I load 230 gr RN to 1.25" OAL and 200 gr SWC to 1.25"-1.26" OAL (but use the OAL that feeds/chambers well from the magazine when the slide is released in your 1911).

XD45s (not XDm) have flat slide rib and have known issues extracting SWC bullets as the extracting case rim will hit the shoulder of the SWC bullet in the magazine. 200 gr RNFP bullet nose profile solves the extracting problem and "feeds like butter". I have found 1.195" OAL loaded with 5.0-5.2 gr produces comparable accuracy to SWC loads.

+1 on the Berry's 185 gr HBRN. Although it is a lighter bullet, because of the hollow base, it has the nose profile of the 230 gr RN and I load it to 1.25" - 1.26" OAL. You get the easy feeding/chambering of 230 gr RN at 185 gr price. This bullet will feed well in both your 1911 and XD compact.


45ACP normally uses large pistol primer but some manufacturers also make cases that use small pistol primers - I separate them out when I sort cases to tumble polish after the range trip and keep them in a box for someone who likes them.

Last edited by BDS-THR; June 23, 2011 at 11:22 PM.
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Old June 23, 2011, 11:26 PM   #9
zippy13
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Greetings Frank_CPL_USMC, and welcome aboard,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miata Mike
For home protection I would use factory self defense loads, but that is a whole different thread about covering ones backside.
+1
And, underline self defense loads. God forbid, should you even be involved in a HD event, you want to be viewed 100% as the defender not the aggressor.
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Old June 24, 2011, 01:11 AM   #10
Frank_CPL_USMC
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Gentleman,

thank you so much for all the advice. got a lot of really good info, as well as some great links with good prices. if everyone in the country was as helpful to one another as the gun community is, this country would be a hell of a lot better off.

Thanks again everyone

Semper Fi.
Frank

PS more replies are always welcomed!
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Old June 24, 2011, 06:26 AM   #11
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An excellent source for well made but economical cast bullets : www.mastercast.net Great products and a great company to work with.

I have several pet loads in 45 acp - one is for a 8-9 pound recoil spring and it is a 200 gr mastercast.net swc on top of either 3.4 grs of bullseye, or 4.1 grs of 231, seated to 1.220" Both are mild and accurate.

My standard recoil spring load (16 pound spring ) is the same bullet on top of 5.0 grains of Bullseye or 5.3 grains of 231 seated to the same 1.220" length. Recoil is very manageable and accuracy is superb in all three of my .45ACP 1911s. They are at the low end for power but I like the accuracy and lighter recoil than trying to move to the upper end of the loading data books.

For plinking loads I use the same powder charges but drop to a 185 gr mastercast.net swc bullet seated to 1.215"

I just bought a pound of Clays, and am going to start experimenting with it soon, as I hear that it is an excellent choice for lighter target loads.

Hope this helps.
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Old June 24, 2011, 07:45 AM   #12
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For lighter recoiling target/plinking rounds, I shoot softer 12 BHN 200 gr SWC with 4.0 gr of Promo using Red Dot load data by weight (as indicated by Alliant).

Promo is a large flake powder that doesn't meter as well as the small flattened ball powders like W231/HP-38 but the .2-.3 gr variation still produces accurate shot groups (W231/HP-38 is just about the best metering powder that consistently meters right on or vary less than .1 gr charge-to-charge).

Promo is lowest priced shotgun/pistol powder that comes in 8lb container only and Powder Valley carries it for $84.75.

BTW, Powder Valley carries both Missouri Bullet and Berry's bullets at very good prices.
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Old June 24, 2011, 11:04 AM   #13
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I use ww-231 mostly and a 230 gr LRN.

Do you have some unknown primers that you are curious if they can be used? I thought I caught a air of the notion. If so...generally speaking it is a bad idea to use unknown componants since you would not know if they are Mag primers or not. OTOH, if you can post pics of the primers, we may be able to positivly ID them.

Quote:
should you even be involved in a HD event, you want to be viewed 100% as the defender not the aggressor.
Ok, I'll bite. When can one be at HOME, and be involved in a HD event...and not be the defender? I am at home, they brought trouble to me...seems pretty clear.
If I am ever in a HD event at home, I will be very aggressive and set terms myself. Of course I am "defending", but the best defense is a good offense.
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Old June 24, 2011, 11:11 AM   #14
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.45 ACP advice

I have loaded for my 1911 for more than a decade. One thing I have learned is that lead bullets=more time cleaning.

I usually use plated bullets (Berry's or Raniers) ..... but use Hornady's XTP when when pushing hard for bowling pins .....

Powders I have used include 700X, Red Dot, Power Pistol and v-n340.
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Old June 24, 2011, 11:14 AM   #15
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I shot a ton of 45's in both my Colt 1911 and Springfield XD. I love 231 because ti is available most everywhere and measure great in my powder measure. You would think after 17 years I would have at least tried some different powder in my 45. I might have to do that some day.

Since I shoot so much I use 100% lead.
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Old June 24, 2011, 11:31 AM   #16
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Frank,

The large primers are a little over .210" typical diameter. Small primers are a little over .175" typical diameter, so it's pretty obvious which one you have when you look.

The small primer cases are from NT (non-toxic) ammunition. This is ammunition that uses diazodinitrophenol (DDNP) instead of lead styphnate as the impact sensitizer and bullets whose jackets completely surround the lead core. The idea is to get all the lead vapor out of the air. The problem is the DDNP is a more violent explosive than lead styphnate so it tends to push a large primer out much harder than lead styphnate does, so, to prevent primer piercing they use the harder-to-distort small primer cup and, usually, a larger vent (flash hole). You can read about it here, if you are curious.

If you want one powder that will run all loads for you in .45 ACP, Bullseye is the old standby. Run 200 grain cast bullets over about 4.5 grains for practice, and run 200 to 230 grain jacketed bullets over 5.0 grains for something closer to full power. I like the Hornady 230 grain TC bullets for that, but anything that isn't round nose you want to double-check for consistent reliable functioning.
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Old June 24, 2011, 12:19 PM   #17
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I've found N320 & N340 to be some of the more consistant for me and by far the cleanest burning without having to be loaded near max.Just my preference.
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Old June 24, 2011, 12:45 PM   #18
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Bullseye is a classic .45ACP powder that performs well. You can shoot a pretty stout load with it and lead bullets, and still keep you velocity low enough to prevent leading. I'm also fond of Titegroup and W231.
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Old June 24, 2011, 03:06 PM   #19
Clifford L. Hughes
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Cpl. Frank:

Where are you stationed? When I shot on several Marine Corps rifle and pistol teams, for the center fire and the .45 match, I shot a 200 grain lead swc bullet over a charge of 3.5 grains of Bullseye powder. This is a light target load so you might have to change your recoil spring for a lighter one for your pistol to function. However, the Bullseye load is accurate.

Semper Fi.

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Old June 24, 2011, 03:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
Ok, I'll bite. When can one be at HOME, and be involved in a HD event...and not be the defender? I am at home, they brought trouble to me...seems pretty clear.
The legal issues are anything but clear, thus the need to be careful. Let's start with your word "trouble." Most trouble can not legally end in a shooting.
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Old June 24, 2011, 04:22 PM   #21
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Unique
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Old June 25, 2011, 01:16 AM   #22
Frank_CPL_USMC
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Getting a lot of great information from you guys. thanks for everything.

Gunny, I was stationed at Camp Pendleton in the 41 area. yourself?
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Old June 25, 2011, 06:27 AM   #23
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Military gets Free Shipping. www.pennbullets.com
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