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Old March 11, 2013, 02:43 AM   #1
mj246
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Clean powder for light-moderate 38spl and 44spl loads

Hi all. My question is just as the title says. My brother and I just started reloading a couple months ago and are currently using Accurate #5 for our 38spl and 44spl target loads. while we are finding the power levels, recoil, and accuracy to be satisfactory, it is burning quite dirtily in both our firearms. Most every shot leaves unburnt powder in both the barrel and the ends of the chambers.

What would be a good powder to make both light and moderate 38spl and 44spl target loads that burn cleanly and don't leave significant amounts of unburnt powder inside our revolvers?
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Old March 11, 2013, 06:33 AM   #2
Viper225
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My guess is you are running pretty light loads with AA#5 if it is burning dirty.
You might try AA#2, and save the #5 for heavier loads.

Bob
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Old March 11, 2013, 06:56 AM   #3
Mike Irwin
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The .44 Special is a problem because of the large case size and the small amounts of powder needed.

I switched to Trail Boss because the loading density was much higher and it is VERY clean burning.
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Old March 11, 2013, 07:07 AM   #4
Viper225
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Mike
I am glad you thought about Trail Boss. That slipped my mind totally.

Bob
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Old March 11, 2013, 07:18 AM   #5
hardworker
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HP38 works pretty well. No unburnt powder. Maybe a little soot around the barrel or outside the cylinder
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Old March 11, 2013, 08:36 AM   #6
Mike Irwin
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Trail Boss is a fantastic powder for .44 Special, and is really good in a lot of other cartridges as well.

Top velocities are kind of low in .38 Special, but it works.
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Old March 11, 2013, 08:46 AM   #7
mjes92
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Try "Clays"
Loading .38 Special I cast Lee 158 grain .358" SWC tumble lube,
3.0 grs. Clays (I started at 2.8 grs.)
CCI small pistol primers

Please note: My cast bullet lead is considerably harder than any purchased Lead cast bullets. For that reason I may be losing velocity. Clean burning and low recoil.
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Old March 11, 2013, 08:52 AM   #8
10 Spot Terminator
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For the .38 special for clean burning and good mid range performance Hogdon Clays gets my vote. Do not mistake this for Universal Clays or International Clays. They are all different.

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Old March 11, 2013, 08:59 AM   #9
Old 454
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If you are loading lead bullets the lube will burn also and make your powder appear dutier then it really is
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Old March 11, 2013, 12:27 PM   #10
CADILLAC HOOSIER
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I've been using vvn320 for 38 special. Seems pretty clean. Burns fast.
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Old March 11, 2013, 05:36 PM   #11
57K
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Ramshot ZIP is similar to W231/HP38 but burns cleaner. www.ramshot.com for data.
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Old March 11, 2013, 05:42 PM   #12
bedlamite
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjes92
Try "Clays"
Loading .38 Special I cast Lee 158 grain .358" SWC tumble lube,
3.0 grs. Clays (I started at 2.8 grs.)
CCI small pistol primers
I've shot thousands of that load. Works great and it's very consistent.
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