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Old July 28, 2012, 10:23 PM   #1
JKilbreth
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Please help. Google has failed me!

I'm into Cowboy Action Shooting, and I'm new to reloading. I've downloaded only about 200+ reloading manuals, and either I'm reading them wrong (a definite possibility), or none of them have the load data I need.

Here's what I have to work with:

I'm using "Green Dot" smokeless shotshell powder.
I'm reloading 45 Long Colt
I'm reloading for a 165 gr RNFP lead bullet

Other possibly useful information:

I'm going to be firing it in a pair of BRAND NEW SASS-edition Ruger Vaqueros, 6.5" barrels
I'm using "found" brass and once-fired brass of various manufacture

I've found plenty of load data for 45 colt, but very few load data books list data for 165 grain, and NONE of them that I've found list anything for Green Dot powder. I figure there's a comparable powder I could compare it to, but I don't know yet.

Please help! I don't want to blow up my new guns, or myself!
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Old July 28, 2012, 11:28 PM   #2
Marco Califo
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Google is fine - It means: use a different powder, or diff bullet

Caliber Bullet Case Minimum OAL (inches) Bbl Length Primer Powder Charge Weight (grains) Velocity (fps) Notes
45 Colt 200 gr Speer LSWC Winchester 1.515 5.5 CCI 300 Green Dot 8.3 980 -
45 Colt 200 gr Speer GDHP Winchester 1.555 5.5 CCI 300 Green Dot 8.8 991 -
http://www.alliantpowder.com/reloade...aspx?gtypeid=1
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Old July 28, 2012, 11:58 PM   #3
mrawesome22
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EDIT: No such thing as a 45 Long Colt.
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Old July 29, 2012, 02:42 AM   #4
JKilbreth
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Marco Califo:

As I already stated, I'm reloading for a 165 gr bullet, NOT 200 gr, therefore, I don't need the information on charging for a 200 gr bullet.

mrawesome22:

I can't see the image you sent with enough clarity to read it, nor does your comment "There's no such thing as 45 colt" make any sense to me.

If you need any clarification from me as to what I'm trying to do, or what I'm trying to do it with, feel free to ask.
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Old July 29, 2012, 06:57 AM   #5
jimkim
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Quote:
As I already stated, I'm reloading for a 165 gr bullet, NOT 200 gr, therefore, I don't need the information on charging for a 200 gr bullet. JKilbreth
What do the 200+ manuals say about using data from a heavier bullet?
While you're looking for that, look for a list of position sensitive powders.
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Last edited by jimkim; July 29, 2012 at 07:18 AM.
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:09 AM   #6
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Maybe you can't find the green dot data becasue your not suppose to use it?
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:18 AM   #7
David Bachelder
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You have a "45 Colt" not a "45 Long Colt". There's no such thing as a Long Colt.
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
No such thing as a 45 Long Colt.
The .45 Colt cartridge is a handgun cartridge dating to 1872. It began as a black powder revolver round developed for the Colt Single Action Army revolver, but is offered as a magnum level handgun hunting round in modern usage. This cartridge was adopted by the U.S. Army in 1873 and served as the official US military handgun cartridge for 19 years. This cartridge is often referred to as the ".45 Long Colt", because there was a ".45 Short" also available in the 1880's.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.45_Colt

I only looked at one manual (Hornady #4), and it lists the the cartridge as '.45 Long Colt'...
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:27 AM   #9
David Bachelder
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Lok here: http://data.hodgdon.com/main_menu.asp

Plenty of loads for the 45 Colt. There is not a 165 grain cast bullet but there is a 160 grain LRNFP (Lead Round Nose or Flat Point). None of them use Green Dot. I'd suggest Hodgdon Universal it Meters well and easy to work with.

This should give you a starting point.
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:29 AM   #10
Salmoneye
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And for those that dislike Wiki as an info source:

http://www.leverguns.com/articles/ta...short_colt.htm
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Old July 29, 2012, 07:39 AM   #11
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It appears some of the fellows are trying to answer your question seriously and others ragging on you a bit. Experienced loaders will tell you that if you do not find a particular load for a particular weigh bullet after a lot of reseach that means there is a reason that load is not listed. Either it sucks in performance or it is dangerous. You can't just use any powder you choose for any load you want just because you have that powder on hand or it appears convenient. Go over to the Colt forum and ask the fellows there that do it on a regular basis. Experience trumps trial and error especially when error can damage your gun or body parts.
http://www.coltforum.com/forums/forum.php
PS- You may also want to visit the "Cast Boolits" site if you intend to use all lead cast projectiles.
http://castboolits.gunloads.com/

Last edited by UtopiaTexasG19; July 29, 2012 at 08:57 AM.
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Old July 29, 2012, 08:24 AM   #12
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As Utopia mentioned, usually when you can't find data for a bullet/powder combination, there is a good reason for it. There doesn't appear to be any data for that combination, so I'd buy a different powder if you already have the bullets.

Check out Hodgdon's web site. They have several powders listed under 45 Colt (not the ruger section) for 160 grain lead RNFP bullets (close enough to 165, these are all low pressure loads anyway).

I would recommend Trail Boss. I've found it to be accurate and clean burning. I also like Winchester 231 and Clays. I do not like IMR 700X because it does not meter well through my powder measure. I purchased two pounds of it one time because it was a good deal and ended up giving it away.

Anyway, the Hodgdon website is always a good reference. I never bother with Alliant's website, it is worthless.
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Old July 29, 2012, 08:39 AM   #13
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green dot ?

why use green dot if you can't find data for it? all i will say is use a powder listed for 45 colt. just loaded 50 rounds in 45 colt 255&200 gr. both loads using 9gr. of unique. also started a round ball load 5gr. unique and 140gr. round ball. so good luck with green dot
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Old July 29, 2012, 09:11 AM   #14
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I can see the image just fine.

You need a better screen?

There was never a 45 short colt, therefore, there was never a need for a long colt designation.

It always has and will be... 45Colt.

sudo apt-get update
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Old July 29, 2012, 09:18 AM   #15
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Green Dot is a good powder. I use it in all the revolver calibers I shoot (.357 to .45Colt) . What I've found with it, is if you have a Unique/Universal load, the Green Dot load is going to be about 1.0g less for comparable velocity. FWIW. I don't shoot 'light' bullets in .45 Colt ... 250-255g bullets is all I use. YMMV. But for your purposes, I would think Trail Boss would be a good choice for the puff loads.

Lee Martin ( http://www.singleactions.com/ ) uses a lot of Green Dot too. Might want to send him a note. He is also active on the Ruger Forums.
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Old July 31, 2012, 01:16 AM   #16
JKilbreth
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First, .45 short colt does exist:
http://www.yesterdaysweapons.com/php...hp?f=29&t=2495
(Also see attached pictures)
Good luck finding cases and load data for it, but believe me, it exists.

Second, I'm using this combination of powder and bullet grain because that's what I have, and I've seen it work before, but was having trouble getting in touch with the person that loaned the equipment to me to figure out what he used.

Third, I finally did get in touch with my friend, and he told me he used 6.2 grains of green dot. I made a batch of 100 and have yet to fire them, but if I remember, I'll follow up on this thread with the results.

Fourth, thanks to all that gave me [helpful/productive] advice. I contacted Alliant and sent an email to their "experts." The response I got was kind and helpful. The guy suggested 8.0(min) to 9.0(max) grains as a starting point, which gave me pause about my own load, but I'd much rather err on the side of getting a bullet stuck in my barrel than blowing off my own hand or destroying my firearm. The guy asked me to follow up with him and let him know if his advise was helpful (he also offered me a discount, should I chose to continue with their products).
Attached Images
File Type: jpeg 450ColtCorto.jpeg (62.9 KB, 19 views)
File Type: jpeg IMG_0999.jpeg (28.4 KB, 15 views)
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Old July 31, 2012, 03:23 AM   #17
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JK, I've been looking at a Speer #10 manual (1979), and it lists Green Dot with 200gr. I'm like you, I'd be kinda jittery about going anywhere near that 9.0gr max- I'm no expert, but that sounds high to me too. Let us know how your load works- heck I've got a brand new can of Green Dot, I might just give it a whirl in my .45 Long Colts too.

Funny thing about lighter bullets. The old Speer manual doesn't list any lighter than 200gr, and Ken Water's Pet Load book lists none lighter than 180. About what timeframe did bullets lighter than 180 come into popularity? Was it the newer powders that brought it about, or was there simply no thought for or demand for them?
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I'm going to use the words "clip" and "Long Colt" every chance I get. It grinds my gears to see new members attacked when we all know dang good and well what's being refered to.
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Old July 31, 2012, 03:45 AM   #18
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I use Unique and 200g bullets. Great results, no problems.
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Old July 31, 2012, 08:07 AM   #19
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JKilbreth,

Let me show you some (hopefully clearer) QuickLoad Data and you decide.


I've circled the things you need to see:

Top Left - I've used a 155gr Lyman LFN(hollowbase) but kicked the weight up to 165gr. Barrel length I've assumed to be 5". Note also we're working against a 14,000psi Max

Top Right - 6.0gr of Green Dot is used. Shot initiation (i.e., bullet getting stuck) pressure must be well over 1,160psi. Case is ~41% filled.

Bottom Right - That load results in 9,198 psi chamber pressure (i.e., well over initiation pressure/well under Max allowed) resulting in a velocity of 892fps: good cowboy action velocity target

Note also that this load of Green Dot has a 97% burn completion, which to my estimation would ordinarily look like a useful combination of bullet/powder. (Does anyone else have a different experience?)

My lawyer tell me to always say "your mileage may vary" of course. But things sure appear reasonable even within the confines of QuickLoad's limitations with straightwall cartridges.




postscript: "Long" Colt is fine with me. I've been mistakenly shooting a 3-screw Ruger in "that" caliber since `73 -- long before I found out I'd been mistaken all along.
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Old July 31, 2012, 08:29 AM   #20
David Bachelder
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Heres where I get confused.
"Check out Hodgdon's web site. They have several powders listed under 45 Colt (not the ruger section) for 160 grain lead RNFP bullets (close enough to 165, these are all low pressure loads anyway)."

The OP is shooting a Ruger. Is the Ruger Vaquero different from the standard Ruger?
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Old July 31, 2012, 08:33 AM   #21
David Bachelder
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I wasn't trying to bust the OP's chops with the Long Colt comment.

I do agree; call it "Long Colt" or "45Colt", we all know what it is. Technically the cartrige is named the 45 Colt, not the Long Colt.

Look on a box of ammo to verify.
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Old July 31, 2012, 08:46 AM   #22
Jim Watson
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I think you will be fine at 6.2 "greens of Grain Dot" as Dean Grennell would say.

The reason you were not able to find a "recipe" is because the 165 gr .45 bullet is a niche product, sold to keep the recoil down in CAS where the power factor is only 60 so as to admit .32s. Green Dot is not a widely popular powder, either.
There is nothing sinister or dangerous, the handbook authors are just reserving their resources for more common combinations.

But you never would find Green Dot data on Hodgdon's www site, it is an Alliant product. And Alliant is not known for their profusion of data combinations.

Looking at the next heavier bullet for which data IS available has been a help to me in the past.



Take a breather, guys, I think we lost a reader last week when the regulars on one board harangued a new poster about the minutae of .45 revolver nomenclature. Or was it the clip vs magazine thing? I forget, but it was trivial relative to what he really needed to know.'

Me? I find the endless blather about .45 Colt, .45 Long Colt, .45 Short Colt, .45 Extra Long Colt, .45 Extra Extra Long Colt, and .45 Extremely Short Colt to be distracting from the real subject of getting the guns in action.
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Old July 31, 2012, 10:53 AM   #23
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OK, to all of you who are screaming bloody damned murder because the OP had the temerity to call it the .45 Long Colt...

It stops.

NOW.

It is NOT what the OP asked about.

.45 Long Colt is an ACCEPTED alternate name for the cartridge -- DEAL WITH IT.

MANY cartridges have alternate names that are widely used, widely accepted, and don't engender the same kind of angst.

9mm Parabellum, 9mm Luger, 9mm NATO, 9x19.

Where's the rage? Where's the angst?

KNOCK IT THE HELL OFF.

If you don't have an answer for the OPs actual question, don't weigh in.

Any further comments of this nature will be deleted.
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Old July 31, 2012, 11:39 AM   #24
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I contacted Ruger about the differences between the Vaquero and the New Vaquero and was told I should not shoot the "Ruger Only" loads in my New Vaquero.

If anyone has anything different concerning the loads acceptable between the two, please let me know.

I bring this up only because sometimes people who normally shoot mild to heavy loads, may want to try a Ruger Only Load in their guns.

JKilbreth - Please let us know how you make out with this load. I have some Green Dot, but have never thought about using it in my .45 Colt. Your experience may make me think about trying it.

Keep your hat on and shoot straight.
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Old July 31, 2012, 12:22 PM   #25
JKilbreth
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Uncle Buck: I did look at the "Ruger only" load data, and it's anywhere from 1.5-3.0 grains more than the alternate 45 colt loads. I'm assuming this is because those pistols are more able to take the higher pressures, thus additional loading data. However, if I can get away with a safer, lighter load, I prefer to do so.

David Bachelder: I guess when the website said "Ruger only" loads, it means any Ruger, but I can't be sure, so I just went with the load data that I've been told work in several 45 colt-chambered firearms.

mehavey: Thanks for the cleaer picture! Maybe my eyesight is bad, but I couldn't make out the previous one. The one you supplied is really informative! I have a mac as my personal computer...I wonder if that Quickload program is available for it...

All others: I will definitely make it a point to let this thread know how it goes! It might be a little while though, as the nearest range to me is over an hour away, but I'll do my best! Thanks, all.
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