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Old May 24, 2012, 06:15 AM   #1
GregInAtl
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Which .38spl powder

I would like a few suggestions for powder to be used in loading 38 spl DEWC's. I am currently using Bullseye, which I like, but my hands are black with gun powder stains after shooting my revolver with them. Needs to be something tht works well for 9mm as well as I share a powder measure for loading both.
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Old May 24, 2012, 06:27 AM   #2
lmccrock
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I have used 231 for both. It is position sensitive in the longer 38 cases, at least in lighter loads (something like 3.4 gr). I do not recall exactly what bullet; as I lost my 38 data a while back.

If I were going to use one powder again for both I would try Titegroup, which claims to be less position sensitive.
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Old May 24, 2012, 06:45 AM   #3
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Bullseye is the gold standard for DEWCs, or any wadcutter light loads. A little dirt won't hurt.
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Old May 24, 2012, 06:47 AM   #4
Mike Irwin
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WW 231 is my absolute go to powder for everything .38 Special related.

I've tried others, and always come back.
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Old May 24, 2012, 08:06 AM   #5
GregInAtl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Irwin
WW 231 is my absolute go to powder for everything .38 Special related.

I've tried others, and always come back.
Any suggestions for load data for DEWC's for 38 spl using 231? I have some HP38, which is the same as 231, I understand.
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Old May 24, 2012, 08:27 AM   #6
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Red Dot.
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Old May 24, 2012, 08:55 AM   #7
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Bullseye and W231 work well in the 38 Special and 9mm.
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Old May 24, 2012, 09:24 AM   #8
Mike Irwin
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I've not loaded DEWC's in quite a few years, but when I did I always went low.

IIRC my favorite load for cutting paper was 3.2 grains.

NOTE: That weight is BELOW the current minimum recommended charge weight of 3.5 grains listed in the Hodgdon Data Center site. Use at your own risk and discretion.
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Old May 24, 2012, 09:36 AM   #9
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I've never seen a lead bullet 38 Special load that left my hands clean after a couple hundred rounds, with any powder. I just wash up afterward. Have any of you folks found a load with lead bullets that is "clean"?
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Old May 24, 2012, 11:36 AM   #10
Mike-Mat
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I like Bullseye and Unique. I also like Hodgdon Universal. All of them meter pretty nice and burn clean.
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Old May 24, 2012, 11:53 AM   #11
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I agree that HP38/W231 is the go-to .38 powder. I have also had success with N320. Not quite the same "feel" as HP38 but the loads are accurate and N320 is one clean powder.

I typically finish a shooting session with 5-10 rounds of Berry's 148gr HBWC seated flush over N320 to clean out the lead/soot from my favorite load, 148gr LHBWC seated flush over HP38.

Of course this will not clean up the outside of the gun or your hands, but I dont notice much in the way of external residue with my light target loads anyway.
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Old May 24, 2012, 12:14 PM   #12
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Another vote for Red Dot...
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Old May 24, 2012, 12:56 PM   #13
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Lately I've seen a lot of posts about "dirty" powders. I dunno what folks expect. I've never had a gun fail because of "dirty" powder (I've used a lot of Bullseye and Unique in revolvers and semi-autos) and all my guns get cleaned after use. I'm more concerned with which powder preforms the best for my chosen bullet and use. I have a briefcase that I take to the range (or country) when I go shooting. In it I have a couple small hand towels, some baby butt wipes, chewing gum, along with tools, targets, and misc. stuff I may need. I also usually have a bottle of water with me. If my hands get sooty after 100-200 rounds or so, a quick wipe with the towel or b. wipe solves that, or pour some water on my hands and wipe dry. I don't wear a suit when I go to the range and I expect dust and gun smoke/residue to be in the air and some will get on me (that's what CSI looks for on your hands/clothes to see if you just shot the good guy).

Anyway, I've heard/read that Universal, being close to Unique, burns "cleaner". And most powders will burn "cleaner" with mid to heavy loads rather than low pressure reduced loads (for the given powder).
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Old May 24, 2012, 09:17 PM   #14
Mike Irwin
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"Lately I've seen a lot of posts about "dirty" powders. I dunno what folks expect."

I expect a powder that's not going to make me look as if I've been mining coal.

With my bare hands.

Using my gun as a pick.
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Old May 24, 2012, 09:27 PM   #15
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I've been using International Clays, just to be different. Promo is also a good one.

ETA: I just reread your 1st post. Don't use International Clays in 9mm. Promo is still OK, and so is Green Dot.

Last edited by zxcvbob; May 24, 2012 at 10:10 PM.
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Old May 24, 2012, 10:05 PM   #16
Gahunter12
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I load 3.5 gr of W231 for my wife's 38spl loads under 158gr SWC. Great load for her to practice with.
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Old May 25, 2012, 08:27 PM   #17
tkglazie
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Agreed GaHunter, we use a very similar practice load of 3.3-3.4gr of HP38 under 158gr LSWC. I like the POI compared to our primary HD round of Buffalo Bore 158gr +P LSWCHP.

I will give 3.5gr a try next time.
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Old May 25, 2012, 08:41 PM   #18
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HP38/WW231 or Titegroup if you don't like Bullseye's carbon.
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Old May 26, 2012, 08:10 AM   #19
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Anything is cleaner than BE but then again most powders require mid pressures before even thinkin of burnin clean.

Anyways ,I have Clays , 700x,231/hp-38, reddot(the cleaer burnin 1)greendot, bluedot.

Clays & 700x is the only fast powders I`ve purchased in bulk to load 38/357 plinkin (or up to 1k fps)loads.

Titegroup is a bit hot (I get leading at speeds I did`nt with other powders) for lead shooting , but I have`nt tried it at the lower speeds , Yet.
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Old May 26, 2012, 08:17 AM   #20
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There's this McDonalds on the way home from my local shooting range, and well, I know it is not that healthy to eat food at McDonalds often, but you know, it tastes real good and what not. So, I do stop there a lot on my way home and sometimes I just get an ice cream cone, but sometimes a quarter-pounder. Anyway, the point I am making (there is actually a point to be made) is that since I stop to get food that I will eat with my hands, I am usually acutely aware of the state of my hands at the end of a range session. No doubt about it, the rounds I load with Win 231 are cleaner, and leave my hands cleaner than most commercial ammo I have used over the years.

February and March were the worst months. I just love those Shamrock Shakes and so I had to stop at McDonalds every single time I went to the range. Yum.
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Old May 27, 2012, 12:02 PM   #21
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"There's this McDonalds on the way home from my local shooting range, and well, I know it is not that healthy to eat food at McDonalds often, but you know, it tastes real good and what not. So, I do stop there a lot on my way home and sometimes I just get an ice cream cone, but sometimes a quarter-pounder. Anyway, the point I am making (there is actually a point to be made) is that since I stop to get food that I will eat with my hands, I am usually acutely aware of the state of my hands at the end of a range session. No doubt about it, the rounds I load with Win 231 are cleaner, and leave my hands cleaner than most commercial ammo I have used over the years.

February and March were the worst months. I just love those Shamrock Shakes and so I had to stop at McDonalds every single time I went to the range. Yum."

Yep. (and not trying to be a butt) but the Micky Dees I've seen have a restroom with a sink, running water, and soap. Most have paper towels too.
Both the indoor ranges and the outdoor shooting ranges I've been to have restrooms. When I'm done shooting at the close-to-home indoor range I have to blow my nose several times 'cause of the dust stirred up by my .44s. Not a complaint, but some things are part of shooting. If I want to stay "Operating Room" clean, I won't go shooting at all, or I'd wear a hazmat suit. My boots get pretty dirty/dusty or even muddy (depending on time of year), when I walk out to the 100 yard line/target stand. My glasses get pretty dusty from shooting my handguns. So, a little soot from so called "dirty" powder ain't no big thang...
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Old May 27, 2012, 12:04 PM   #22
mikld
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"There's this McDonalds on the way home from my local shooting range, and well, I know it is not that healthy to eat food at McDonalds often, but you know, it tastes real good and what not. So, I do stop there a lot on my way home and sometimes I just get an ice cream cone, but sometimes a quarter-pounder. Anyway, the point I am making (there is actually a point to be made) is that since I stop to get food that I will eat with my hands, I am usually acutely aware of the state of my hands at the end of a range session. No doubt about it, the rounds I load with Win 231 are cleaner, and leave my hands cleaner than most commercial ammo I have used over the years.

February and March were the worst months. I just love those Shamrock Shakes and so I had to stop at McDonalds every single time I went to the range. Yum."

Yep. (and not trying to be a butt) but the Micky Dees I've seen have a restroom with a sink, running water, and soap. Most have paper towels too.Both the indoor ranges and the outdoor shooting ranges I've been to have restrooms. When I'm done shooting at the close-to-home indoor range I have to blow my nose several times 'cause of the dust stirred up by my .44s. Not a complaint, but some things are part of shooting. When I shoot, I will get GSR on me. If I want to stay "Operating Room" clean, I won't go shooting at all, or I'd wear a hazmat suit. My boots get pretty dirty/dusty or even muddy (depending on time of year), when I walk out to the 100 yard line/target stand. My glasses get pretty dusty from shooting my handguns. So, a little soot from so called "dirty" powder ain't no big thang...
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Old May 27, 2012, 11:08 PM   #23
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Quote:
I would like a few suggestions for powder to be used in loading 38 spl DEWC's. I am currently using Bullseye, which I like, but my hands are black with gun powder stains after shooting my revolver with them.
What is your charge weight ? Are you seating at the crimp groove ? Or what is the COL ?
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Old May 27, 2012, 11:33 PM   #24
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I get great results with Power Pistol in my Ruger SP-101. I've never come out filthy, can load from light to zippy with it, and with the right charge accuracy is more than acceptable for the IDPA matches I run with it.
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Old May 28, 2012, 06:52 AM   #25
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I use LongShot for my .38SPL
Its not your norm load but its clean and works like a champ
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