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Old June 11, 2013, 06:09 PM   #1
Old 454
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Max load in Ruger Alaskan 454

So I was looking for some real race cars for my Ruger Alaskan .454 Casull.

I came accross this load.

240 Grain XTP-Mag, I was told this was a great bullet that will with stand the pressure a full house .454 load will generate.

CCI Small rifle mag primer

Starline brass (new) this is the brass I use.

37.2 Gr. W296 (compressed load.) reciepe say 36 - 38.7 GR.W296/H110

Being that the Ruger Alaskan is a 6 shot and not a 5 shot, will the Ruger Alaskan .454 Casull handle this load ?
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Old June 11, 2013, 07:49 PM   #2
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You should be fine , I like lil-gun for 454's in mine.
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Old June 11, 2013, 08:12 PM   #3
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You won't hurt the Redhawk with that load, but be careful that you don't set your target on fire, that should be a real flame thrower.
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Old June 11, 2013, 08:23 PM   #4
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The 240gr XTP Mag has a .452 dia and is actually made for the .454 Casull and the .460 mag. You'll be just fine with this bullet and W296 / H110 powder.
On a side note, if the target is within 20 meters and you miss with the bullet the flames should finish it off.

Last edited by TMD; June 12, 2013 at 06:32 AM.
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Old June 11, 2013, 11:02 PM   #5
Old 454
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this is good to know, I don't intend to shoot a steady diet of this.

I have shot this or close to this load out of a my FA 454, but was kinda hesatint with a 6 shot, I know Ruger makes a strong gun, just want to be ok

So you say this is a flame thrower ? Is this due to compressed load out of a snubbie ? Like I said I shot this load or something close out of my FA 454 and don't remember alot of flame.

If I can I going to try to make a video of this round.
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Old June 11, 2013, 11:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Max load in Ruger Alaskan 454
So I was looking for some real race cars for my Ruger Alaskan .454 Casull.
It is actually easy to find a maximum load for any gun. Just keep adding powder until the gun blows up in your face and then back-off half a grain.
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Old June 13, 2013, 10:25 PM   #7
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Bad idea, but here goes if you really want to push the envelope

If you REALLY want to press the envelope on ANY cartridge, you should consider switching calibers or moving up to a bigger firearm.

Safety allways, Safety all ways.

pressure signs from UncleNick on TheFiringLine.com forum
amd supermoderator on shootersforum.com

http://www.shootersforum.com/handloa...ure-signs.html
Load manuals and experienced reloaders frequently advise working a load up in small charge increments while watching for pressure signs. Many beginners are unaware of all the signs, so, below is a partial list of pressure signs, along with alternate causes of the signs where I am aware of them. No one particular sign can be counted on to work in all guns nor even with any particular set of load components all the time. There is also no way to tell which sign will show up first in your gun and with your load combinations, so you have to learn to watch for them all.

Case bulging, particularly near an unsupported part of the head.
Case crack along side (may mean excess pressure, but may mean brittle, defective, draw mark scored, or worn out brass).
Case head expansion (CHE; may mean high pressure, may mean nothing in isolated case).
Case head separation (may mean high pressure, but may mean excess headspace or worn out brass).
Case splits in body in fewer than 10 reloads-back loads down at least 2% (can also be due to ammonia vapor exposure or a brass defect in an individual case).
Case mouth split (may mean high pressure, but more often means case needed neck annealing).
Case pressure ring expansion (PRE; not much more reliable than case head expansion but may mean pressure is excessive).
Case primer pockets getting loose in five reloads or fewer.
Case, excessive stretching (this is actually visible pressure ring area stretching which may be due to excess pressure or to excess headspace).
Case, extractor or ejector marks on head, especially after increasing powder charge. Most common in semi-auto rifles, but can happen with any extractor and ejector (may be high pressure or bad timing, or an extractor standing proud on the bolt face).
Case, won’t fit back into chamber after firing.
Gas leak (see Primer Leaking, below).
Groups start to open up at or beyond a suspected maximum load pressure.
Hard bolt lift.
Incipient case head separation (starting or partial case head separation or signs of it).
Increase in powder charge gets unexpected velocity. Look for an orderly progression of muzzle velocity vs. charge weight. If muzzle velocity stops going up or actually goes down, or if it goes up too much, you have a problem. The first two indicate steel is stretching. The stretch may just be due to uneven bolt lug contact, or it may mean you are stretching the receiver and fatiguing the steel abnormally. Unexpected velocity increase indicates unexpected pressure increase. With any abnormal velocity, you should back the charge off 5% from where it started. If, based on manuals, the load and its velocity seem too low for this to be happening, get your gun inspected or bolt lugs lapped and try working up the load again.
Primer blown (primer falls out when gun is opened; same as loose primer pocket).
Primer cratering (may mean high pressure, or it may mean a worn firing pin or firing pin tunnel, or may mean you have a new production Remington bolt with chamfered firing pin tunnel).
Primer flattening (may mean high pressure, or may mean long headspace; some loads always make flat primers; softer primer cups (Federal) flatten more easily than harder ones (CCI), so it also can mean nothing at all).
Primer, mushrooming (may mean high pressure, or may mean long headspace).
Primer, piercing (may mean high pressure or may mean incorrect firing pin protrusion or incorrect firing pin nose shape).
Primer, leaking gas around primer pocket (may mean high pressure, may mean loose primer pocket in case, may mean damaged primer was inserted, may mean primer backed out too far during firing, which excessive chamber headspace makes possible).
Case, short life -back load off at least 2% (under 10 reloads in non-self-loaders or with military brass in self-loaders, 6 or less in self-loaders with commercial brass).
Case, sticky or hard extraction (especially in revolvers this is a positive sign to knock the powder charge down at least 5%, in rifles also look for chamber ringing).
Case, torn or bent rim (from hard extraction, see #24., above).
Case, primer pocket expanded and won't hold newly seated primers firmly (PPE; this is likely no more accurate than CHE (3., above), but is a more sensitive measure for those with tools that can measure the inside diameter of a primer pocket repeatably to the nearest ten-thousandth of an inch).
Primer, loose or falls out when opening the action or after (see # 26., above)
Case, increase in required trimming frequency (this is an sudden increase in case length growth per load cycle, it can be caused by excess pressure, but can also be a sign of increasing head space due to some other problem. It is especially common as a pressure sign in lever action guns because the greater span from bolt face to rear lug allows more steel stretch when pressure gets excessive.)
Case, increase in apparent headspace (this means the cases are coming out longer, including from casehead to shoulder. It can mean bolt lug setback, which is usually an extreme pressure sign. It can also mean a loose barrel or an improperly set Savage barrel. Whatever the cause, the gun should go straight to the gunsmith for inspection.)
Gas or Flame Cutting of revolver top strap. (Can also be due to excessive barrel/cylinder gap that needs correction.)
Gas or Flame cutting of rifle bolt face by gas leaks around primer pocket or of bolt face perimeter. (Can also be result of occasional leaks from normal rounds firing, as is observed in many military gun bolts.)
Velocity higher than manual maximum load velocity for same powder and barrel length. For example: one fellow using a .243 Win load one charge increment below the manual maximum got velocity 200 fps higher than the manual claimed for its maximum load's velocity. His single-shot action was popping open at every shot. With QuickLOAD we were able to calculate he had about 77,000 psi. An alternate explanation, if everything else is normal, is that your chronograph readings are incorrect. It is not uncommon to get high readings due to muzzle blast when the chronograph is too close to the gun. I recommend 15 feet minimum, since that is what the manual authors typically use and is what you are comparing to. Some big magnum rifles need even more distance.

Please contribute any additional signs I've missed.

Credits:
Expansion of 22 based on Fguffy's comments.
Addition of 5 and 23 based on Kanuck's comments in another thread.
Addition of 26 based on Wm. Iorg's link content.
Addition of 27 based on Precision Shooting Reloading Guide, Chapter 1.
Modification to #10 based on Purpledragon's experience with hot .38-55 load plus the writing of M.L. McPherson.
Addition of 29 inspired by modification of #10.
Addition of 30 based on Tac_driver's suggestion.
Addition of 31 inspired by 30.
Addition of 32 based on a thread I participated in at another forum.
Revision of 16 based on Denton Bramwell's recommendation.

http://www.shootersforum.com/handloa...ure-signs.html

http://www.shootingsoftware.com/ftp/...%2019%2004.pdf

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Old June 13, 2013, 10:36 PM   #8
Old 454
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once again, thank you Mr. Sheep.

No I am not looking to push the envelope, I just want to make sure the load I got from Lee's Modern reloading I used a XTP-Mag instead of the Freedom Arms bullet in 240 grain, I am 1 grain shy of the max with 37.2 grains W296 under that XTP-Mag, and because It a ruger Alaskan with a six shot cylinder and not a Freedom Arms 5 shot cylinder, I want to make sure that the ruger will handle that pressure and not split the cylinder or something worse.

Also the other reason is if you look at the max load for H110 and W296 the W296 has a higher pressure then the H110.

I know that H110/W296 are the same powder but why the diffrent pressure rating ?
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Old June 13, 2013, 11:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454
once again, thank you Mr. Sheep.
You're welcome.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454
No I am not looking to push the envelope, I just want to make sure the load I got from Lee's Modern reloading ...
I have been told that Lee's load recipes are derived from other publications. It would probably be prudent to acquire data from the powder manufacturers directly, or the bullet manufacturers. Most importantly, people who have their own ballistics laboratories.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454
I used a XTP-Mag instead of the Freedom Arms bullet in 240 grain, I am 1 grain shy of the max with 37.2 grains W296 under that XTP-Mag, and because It a ruger Alaskan with a six shot cylinder and not a Freedom Arms 5 shot cylinder, I want to make sure that the ruger will handle that pressure and not split the cylinder or something worse.
Less important than the 5/6 chamber question is the actual amount of metal between the chambers and between the chamber and the outside of the cylinder and the metallurgy of that metal itself. Ruger's 454 Casull cylinders are of sterner stuff than their 44 Magnum metal, but the Freedom Arms is the gold standard for 454 Casulls (after all, Dick Casull invented the chambering and founded FA)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454
Also the other reason is if you look at the max load for H110 and W296 the W296 has a higher pressure then the H110.

I know that H110/W296 are the same powder but why the diffrent pressure rating ?
That would be a mystery. Go to the powder/bullet manufacturers who have their own labs for the best answers. Pay attention to the firearm from which any recipe was fired for the evaluation, too. If it was not the same gun, (I mean THE SAME ACTUAL GUN and the same chamber) the lab will get different results. Every gun is a reality to itself.

Of course, this is splitting hairs. Which is why we work up loads and look for the various pressure signs in our own guns. And if you have two guns that take the same ammunition, you don't use a load worked up to one of the envelope margins (high or low) in one gun and blithely fire it out of the other.

I made certain assumptions about your original question, which were wrong. Thanks for correcting me so gently. Also remember that others will read this thread who do not have the same prior knowledge as you.

Regards and Good Luck,

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Old June 15, 2013, 03:54 PM   #10
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lol....Mr. Sheep you have answered so many of my questions with very good info. Correct you ??? ....no my friend, your the man. totally respect your opinions and information.
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Old June 15, 2013, 06:31 PM   #11
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Max load in Ruger Alaskan 454

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454 View Post
CCI Small rifle mag primer
Probably not much difference but "the" 454 Casull primer (the one the cartridge was designed with) is actually the Remington small rifle bench rest i.e. Remington 7 1/2. It was used because it has a thicker cup.
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Old June 15, 2013, 08:27 PM   #12
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Well you have different load data than i have.
my Hor. 7th list W296 at 36.7 is a max load with the FA revolver and loads and the recomendations for loads for othe firearms chambered in 454Casull perhaps should be loaded up more cautiously.

And i load my FA using the load tables printed from the FA web site and your load is listed starting at 26 gr of W296 and max at 38gr same powder.
So i think dahermitt has answered truthfully.

When you do the video do one on a remote trigger pull and the revolver free to exit stage rear. but with only one load in the wheel.
i am currious as to how far it will travel in the other direction?
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Old June 15, 2013, 11:52 PM   #13
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Lee's Modern Reloading.

Here is the data I use from Lee's Modern Reloading.

240 grain Hard Core Freedom Arms Bullet.
( I used a 240 Gr. Hornady XTP-Mag instead of the 240 Gr. Freedom Arms Bullet.)

Minimum load- 36.0C Gr. H110 1923 FT Sec.
Max. Load - 38.2C Gr. H110 2065 Ft Sec. Max Pressure 51300 Cup

C=Compressed load

Minimum Load/ Max the same as above for Winchester 296 Pressure at 62915 PSI

Doh I see now, lol....One is cup the other PSI.

But any way this is where I got my load data from.

So you see I am a full grain from Max.

I just wanted to ask the knowledgeable people here if that was safe in a Ruger Alaskan .454 Casull. I want to be sure that the Ruger can handle it
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Old June 16, 2013, 09:10 PM   #14
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Max load in Ruger Alaskan 454

The Ruger can handle any load that is within published SAAMI specs. The question is... Can the shooter ;-)

I use a 360 gr bullet and 21.5 gr of Lil' Gun for an average velocity of 1060 fps. That load is right in the middle of the range and it hurts to shoot more than a few. Also, I did some chronograph testing and found that with that short barrel you are going to be beyond the point of diminishing returns if you use a max charge. Velocity gain was negligible while muzzle blast and recoil was noticeably worse.

I wasn't surprised by these findings but had to see for myself.

Don't expect any real speed demons from that abbreviated barrel. Expect to get the same sort of power you'd get from a "normal" barrel .44 Mag (you'll need to use heavier bullets). But in a smaller package that hurts worse to shoot.

Last edited by wyobohunter; June 16, 2013 at 09:16 PM.
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Old June 16, 2013, 09:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Don't expect any real speed demons from that abbreviated barrel. Expect to get the same sort of power you'd get from a "normal" barrel .44 Mag (you'll need to use heavier bullets). But in a smaller package that hurts worse to shoot.
Yep there's just a limit to how fast you can accelerate a bullet in short barrels. My 4" Redhawk 44mag pushes the performance of what can be done with a 454 Alaskan.
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Old June 17, 2013, 12:08 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old 454
Here is the data I use from Lee's Modern Reloading.
As I understand it, Lee's Modern Reloading publishes recipes researched from other publications. I opine it would be far better to use the original sources when looking for any load recipes that explore the edges of the performance envelopes.

The powder manufacturers maintain their own ballistics laboratories, and most bullet manufacturers do, as well.

By all means, use Lee's manual for pedestrian data, but look to those who show their source data for the really good stuff.

Some people see me as a Lee fanboy (and there is a certain amount of truth in that, but limited) and I like the book and use the load data myself. But only as an adjunct to more authoritative sources, particularly if I am near the edge of the performance envelope..

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Old June 24, 2013, 06:37 PM   #17
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Well I shot some of my loads this week end, I do agree you don't get all of the power you would from a 7.50" barrel.

I tell ya what I would like to have chrono those rounds, The first few times I shot the rounds the whole range stoped shooting and took a look over. lol

When I got the Alaskan home to clean it seemed that the trigger was binding a bit, was hard to pull it back.

But after I gave it a good cleaning and oiling all is good. could have got hot and burned the oil out of it?

One thing though I have to ask, has any one been experienceing any problems with small rifle magnum primers.

I had some Wolf SRM primers and had 5 squibs, just a sizzle and and a bullet lodged in the barrel.

I tossed those out pulled all my loads and deprimed all the Wolf primers.

Bought some Fedral SRM primers all went well, untill last bullet, sizzle and a squib.
I checked all my seating depths and all, all was good. Just a bad run of luck or bad primers ?

Last edited by Old 454; June 24, 2013 at 11:58 PM.
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Old June 24, 2013, 10:55 PM   #18
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Sounds like you might have been low on the powder charge. H110 does NOT like to be loaded lightly. If I got at or slightly below the minimum load of that stuff I'd get the same results.
*pop*
fizzzz
stuck bullet

H110 requires pressure to work well.
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Old June 24, 2013, 11:50 PM   #19
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37.2 Gr. W296 all hand weighed. when the primer fizzled there was yellow powder every where, all packed in behind the bullet. and the cylinder.

All you heard was a sizzle from the primer and a little wisp of smoke.

Cant imagine a light primer strike would do this as all the others went of with out a hitch.all primers seated to the same depth just a tad below flush.

I did have a bad charge go off awhile back of h110 where only half of it burned and damn near broke my hand, again with Wolf Primers.

Last edited by Old 454; June 24, 2013 at 11:56 PM.
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Old June 25, 2013, 12:14 PM   #20
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I've had the exact same squib loads when using "light" bullets and H-110/WW296/AA#9. I quit using light bullets with these powders.
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Old June 25, 2013, 06:14 PM   #21
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really, a light weight bullet will cause squibs with H110/W296 ??? not doughting you,but is there any reason for this ?

I was thinking of a primer issue, hmmmm food for though.
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Old June 25, 2013, 09:32 PM   #22
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Yup. When I bought my first .454, I was experimenting with some 250 grain jacketed bullets and had one recipe that produced a hang fire on every single round.

More recently, I was firing some of my cast 250 gr. boolits and had one make it just about halfway through the barrel of my Ruger SRH .454. When I drove the slug out, it was backed by a clump of unburned powder. In fairness, that particular load used WC820 surplus powder, but any of the slow burning ball powders can cause the same thing.

Back in the early 70's, I had the same thing happen in a Ruger SBH .44 magnum and failed to realize what had happened. I fired another round with the cast boolit stuck in the barrel. I even wrote a short article about the "incident" for The American Rifleman that was published. Back then, few shooters knew of the possibilities of squibs and hangfires with H-110. Amazingly, that Ruger was not damaged by my lack of awareness.....and that's one of the reasons I'm a Ruger fan.

Check here for pictures of the boolit I removed from my RSR:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=510931

Last edited by 454PB; June 25, 2013 at 09:38 PM.
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Old June 25, 2013, 11:37 PM   #23
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so its not so much a primer issue then as it is a powder issue more to the point H110/W296 correct ?

So if I changed my powder to say Lil Gun or Enforcer this should eliminate the squib issues ?

But why only light weight bullets ?

Again I am just trying to understand the issue.
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Old June 26, 2013, 06:40 AM   #24
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Max load in Ruger Alaskan 454

I'll not attempt to answer your question (sorry) just replying that I use Lil' Gun with excellent results. I also use
Rem 7 1/2 primers. I've never had a problem with any load using bullets ranging from as low as 250 gr. up to 360 gr.
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Old June 26, 2013, 10:39 AM   #25
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Well it's only my opinion developed over many years of shooting the big guys, but it appears those slow burners need the resistance of a heavy bullet to get a progressive burn started. Yes, the primer has an effect, and magnum primers (or at least ones with a good, hot flame front) are needed, as well as heavy case neck tension and a heavy roll crimp. I've actually reduce the size of my case mouth expanders to produce more neck tension.....I want .003" of tension (an expander measurement of .448" for .45 Colt and .454 Casull) to both facilitate proper powder burn and prevent bullet movement in recoil. I test this by fully loading the cylinder, firing all but one round, then remove that unfired round and check to see if the bullet has moved forward out of the case. You can't pull my seated bullets with an inertia puller.

As to Lil'Gun, I use a lot of it, it's one of my favorite powders, and frankly I can't say if it shares the same propensity for squibs. Because I'm so paranoid about squibs and stuck bullets, I've never used it in a situation (light bullets, non-magnum primers, and light neck tension) that can cause a problem. I treat it just like H-110, WW296, AA#9, and WC820.

My advice is to be very careful and pay attention so you don't end up firing another round while a bullet is lodged in the barrel. I was extremely lucky when it happened to me, and I don't want it to happen again.
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