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Old June 7, 2012, 10:43 AM   #51
judgecrater
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45 powders

I have tried many. There are so many "right" answers for this question.
W231/HP38 is excellent. Universal is excellent.
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Old June 7, 2012, 02:42 PM   #52
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Greendot can always be found in the back of the shelves. Knock the dust off the containers and enjoy it.

Also Hp38/w231
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Old June 7, 2012, 06:07 PM   #53
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HP38/231 is my choice also. I use it in 9mm, 40 S&W, 38 and have used it in 45 Colt. Meters well and consistent for me.
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Old June 7, 2012, 07:06 PM   #54
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I'm going to pick up a pound of each of the powders you guys are using. What primers do you recommend for the .45 ACP and these powders? My brass takes a small primer.
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Old June 7, 2012, 07:47 PM   #55
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My preferred powder for .45 is WST (Winchester Super Target). It burns cleaner then W231 does. It is also a little faster burning. It measures well in most powder measures as well. I have used AA5 and W231 for .45 but WST seems to work the best.
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Old June 7, 2012, 07:55 PM   #56
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231/HP38.
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Old June 7, 2012, 11:34 PM   #57
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For 40 years.....Unique. Just as good in .40 S&W.

Other powers like 231 do it pretty well, too, but not any better in my personal experience. I prefer the Unique recoil, the Unique density, the Unique Accuracy, and especially the Unique versatility. I may be old fashioned, but experience accounts for something.
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Old June 8, 2012, 12:46 AM   #58
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The reason Bullseye, Unique and 231 have such large followings is because forty years ago, they were the only reasonable choices.

That is no longer the case, and the compromises made with both those powders are no longer necessary.

While good results can be achieved with patience and anything that fits in the case, better results can be achieved sooner with a powder tailored to the mission.

Of those three old powders, Bullseye is the only one I like for .45 ACP, and I don't like it as well as Titegroup.
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Old June 8, 2012, 07:22 AM   #59
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I use Bullseye in the .45ACP, but I've always used Bullseye in the .45ACP. I've never seen a reason to try anything else. It works for me.
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Old June 8, 2012, 11:00 AM   #60
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Do these powders need a particular primer or can you use any kind?
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Old June 8, 2012, 11:26 AM   #61
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"The reason Bullseye, Unique and 231 have such large followings is because forty years ago, they were the only reasonable choices."

231 didn't hit the shelves until 1979 or 1980.

Prior to that Winchester offered 230, but it wasn't an entirely suitable powder.

There weren't as many powders on the market back in the early 1970s as there were today, but there were several that were very useful for .45 ACP, including Red Dot and another now discontinued Winchester shotshell powder, the name of which escapes me at the moment.

WW 231 remains popular today because it's what Winchester uses in most of its handgun ammo (non cannister version, of course), so people are familiar with it's characteristics and capabilities.
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Old June 8, 2012, 01:01 PM   #62
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I stand corrected.

Thirty years ago it was all there was.

Thisismysig, the manuals will list what brand of brass and primers they used to test their loads.

To take advantage of all that R&D, (99% of reloaders don't have their own pressure measuring equipment) it's best ("best" meaning conservative) to start with what they used.

If you start with something else, you're starting with a different load, different pressures and different velocities, and need to be ready to do your own testing.

To learn to reload, for my money, I'd start with the primers the folks who wrote the manuals used.

To ask a personal question, one that you're under no obligation to answer, why are you so determined to use a different primer?
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Old June 8, 2012, 01:13 PM   #63
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I've tried a whole lot of different powders for 45ACP over the last thirty years. I settled on HP38/231/Zip about a year ago, and did so because it gave me the best combination of metering, economy, accuracy, cleanliness (both of gun and brass), and power.

It's not tradition - it's my experience.
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Old June 8, 2012, 03:47 PM   #64
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Red Dot for .45

I like Red Dot for .45....
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Old June 8, 2012, 04:08 PM   #65
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Jammer Six, thanks again for the additional info.

It's not that I am determined to use a different primer. It's just that I was not sure if I actually needed to use the primer listed. I can see now that I need to stick to the combinations listed in the manual. Changing one component, changes everything.

So, completely out of ignorance, I ordered 500 small primer Federal cases and 1000 200 gr JRN bullets from PowerBond Bullets. Did this before I started looking at reload manuals. I know, dumb. Now it seems that no matter what manual I look at, there is no data for that type bullet. There is plenty of data for 230 gr JHPs, SWCs and the like. Even some for 200 gr SWCs and HPs. But nothing for my type of bullet.

I am in a deep quandary to say the least. Don't know if I can use the OAL for a 230 gr JRN and the load data for a 200 gr bullet or not. My thought is this may work. But if I have to start over and order components specifically based on the load data, I will.
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Old June 8, 2012, 05:14 PM   #66
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Well your assessment still isnt quite right. I'll dig out a few of my reloading manuals and go through the powders over the years.
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Old June 8, 2012, 05:26 PM   #67
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I say pick one. Most work fairly well. Some may be less sooty than others.

I have used Titegruop it works well with jacketed, and OK with cast lead. I use it more with plated, and jacketed 9mm with great results.

HiSkor 800x It works. (Does not meter very well though.) Still have most of the can left.

Trail Boss when using a full case it works very well with my 200 grain cast lead semi wad cutters, and is the cleanest powder I have ever used in a semi auto.

I stick with Bull's Eye for my cast lead loads in .45 acp because it works, and I can find it just about anywhere that sells powder.
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Old June 9, 2012, 12:06 AM   #68
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CCI primers are the hardest of the ones from the US as far as I have been able to tell. Federal are the softest.

I don't normally use CCI primers because I do have a couple of pistols with lighter than normal hammer springs in them. I normally use Winchester primers. When I can't get them for some reason I will use Federal followed by Remington. As long as you are not loading near max levels there shouldn't be any problem using any of the 4 without having to work up the load again. Just don't use Mag primers. They will increase pressure enough to change things more than you probably want. I have used all 4 of these primers to load pistol ammo.

With WST powder I like to load it between 4.9 and 5.0 grains of powder with 185 JHP bullet from Montana Gold. OAL is 1.210" The Max level for this bullet and powder is about 5.3 grains. If you have to load with a shorter OAL be sure to reduce the powder and work the load up again. Shorter OAL will increase pressures.

This is a mild clean shooting load. You might be able to get a softer shooting load with a little less powder. I have loaded these up with 4.6 grains in the past. 4.9 to 5.0 will cycle any .45 I have tried them in and accuracy has been good.

WST fills the case enough to easily see the powder while loading on a progressive press. The color of the powder is fairly light and that helps too.
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Old June 9, 2012, 06:49 PM   #69
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I tried Clay's a while back and had pretty good luck with it. I've also loaded a bunch with Unique. I liked Clay's better; it was a little cleaner. And I don't want to start any big arguements, but some people have metering issues with Unique.

U.L.
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Old June 9, 2012, 07:27 PM   #70
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I use bullseye or unique, they both work fine for me
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Old June 9, 2012, 08:13 PM   #71
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MississippiDave: Thanks very much for the primer info. I think that just about confirms what I've been thinking. Just about any primer will do as long as it's not a magnum primer and I don't go near the max powder charge.
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Old June 10, 2012, 08:18 PM   #72
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I have read about some Wolf and Tula primers might be hotter then the standard primers. This is the reason I only mentioned the US brands. I have used the 4 primers I previously mentioned and found the differences were mostly with the hardness of the primers. Some might feed better then others in my primer feed. I like the softer primers so those are the ones I try to get.
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Old June 10, 2012, 09:10 PM   #73
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I really like 231/HP-38 and use it for IDPA loads because it groups well in ammo that meets the required power factor.

However, for the best accuracy at low pressure/velocity for Bullseye matches (we only shoot at 20 yards), Bullseye is my choice --- by far!

At low pressure, Bullseye burns more completely that 231/HP-38 leaving less unburned flakes in the action and, from my testing with my target .45's, it produces less shot-to-shot velocity variation.

JMHO - YRMV
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Old June 10, 2012, 09:33 PM   #74
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I go along with Bullseye.

The only objection I have to Titgroup is from Precision's website-- Titegroup is one of the powders they specifically recommend against, probably because it burns so hot. (My theory, no supporting documentation.)

So with Precision bullets, I got off into Bullseye, and while the combination of Bullseye and Precision bullets stinks, (as in smells really bad) it's very accurate. I haven't done enough with other bullets and Bullseye to determine if the smell is the bullet, the powder or just the combination.

Titegroup remains the only powder I've bought in 8 lb. quantity.
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Old June 11, 2012, 06:22 PM   #75
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Sorry for the late reply, but here goes....I've used 231 for twenty years and have yet to find a hand gun caliber that won't perk to perfection with it. For the .45 be it ACP or LC, it's my powder of choice producing factory standard velocities well within pressure limits.

For ease of metering through RCBS or Dillon measures, 231 can't be beat. Great uniformity. I gave up on Unique years ago for just that cause...varying loads when dropped from the measure.

Recently, a cpl yrs ago, I was told that HP38 is the same powder...different label, but exactly the same. I've tried it with the same loads in .38 Special, .357, .44 Spl and Mag, and the .45's...my chronograph shows the same velocities for identical charges...they're interchangeable in my experience. Were I to pick one powder for all handgun loads, it would be 231 or HP38.

Best Regards, Rod
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