The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 19, 2015, 03:47 PM   #26
Nick_C_S
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2013
Location: Taxifornia
Posts: 4,896
Quote:
(Mike) I don't know about 231's economy, as I've never really compared it price wise against Bullseye or anything else.
Quote:
(Kosh) I generally found that getting performance equivalent to Bullseye loads from W231, I had to elevate the charge weight from 0.5 grains to 1.5grains per round, depending on the caliber of interest.
Based on my extensive experience, in the 38 Special target ammo world, the difference to achieve similar performance between W231 and Bullseye is about 0.4 grains per round (in most bullet weights/types). But either way, save Vihtavuori, economy is never a factor for me a in powder purchase/selection. It's the least costly of the components; with the difference being but fractions of a penny per round.

Quote:
(Mike) As for Unique, I've never been shy in my opinion about Unique. Personally, I can't stand the stuff. It's filthy dirty and it meters for crap.
Quote:
(Kosh) I AM a fan of Unique, despite its tendency to "meter like cornflakes" and not burn as cleanly as many powders. I find both problems abate quickly as charge weights go above 5 - 6gr, and heavy crimps, heavy bullets, and higher velocities are sought.
I think we all agree that Unique meters crummy. For me, yes, it does, but not to the point where it makes inconsistent ammo. Yeah, trying to get my hopper set to the correct charge weight has me at times muttering a few choice words that my granddaughter shouldn't hear. But it's not that big o' deal.

As for Unique running clean, you gotta load it up (we all know this). Of course it begs the question: If you have to load it up to get it to run clean, then how versatile is it really? I like Unique. I have and use Unique. But I'm going to phase it out of my inventory for this reason. If I have to load it up to get it to run clean, then I'd rather use Power Pistol for the application. And so for that reason, I'm going to phase out my inventory of Unique. I have just over two #'s; will take a couple years for me to exhaust my supply.
__________________
Gun control laws benefit only criminals and politicians - but then, I repeat myself.
Life Member, National Rifle Association
Nick_C_S is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 04:12 PM   #27
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 40,274
"MIKE IRWIN, not to start a "flaming war" or whatever it's called, but I generally found that getting performance equivalent to Bullseye loads from W231, I had to elevate the charge weight from 0.5 grains to 1.5grains per round, depending on the caliber of interest."

Well Duh, they're different powders.

If the loading data were exactly the same, and produced the same results, they'd be the same powder.

But, velocity vs loading density isn't the only reason to pick a powder.

My first reloads -- 9mm and .38 Special -- were done with 231.

Over the years I've tried many other powders, including Bullseye, Red Dot, Unique, the various AAs, etc., and I've never found any that truly beat 231 for its versatility for MY reloading needs -- the cartridges I load and the results I get, both at the loading bench and at the range.

That said, there are some situations in which I do NOT use 231 as I don't consider it to be the best powder for the job.

Most specific is for my .44 Special. The tiny amounts of 231 that constituted top loads were still virtually lost in the case, and I was getting spotty performance and accuracy, most likely due to powder ignition issues due to positioning in the case.

When I switched to Trail Boss, though, it was a completely different story.

Anyway, don't for a moment feel that I'm denigrating your, or anyone else's choice of reloading powders if they choose something other than 231. It's not a contest. It's what works best for us.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 04:14 PM   #28
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 40,274
" If you have to load it up to get it to run clean, then how versatile is it really?"

You're misunderstanding the term versatility, at least for how I'm using it.

Just because it's not clean burning doesn't mean that it's not versatile.

Another good descriptor to replace versatile is, perhaps, flexible. It has an enormous use range, both in terms of cartridges and in terms of loads for those cartridges, a range that few, if any other, powders can match.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 04:43 PM   #29
Nick_C_S
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2013
Location: Taxifornia
Posts: 4,896
I'm not questioning Unique's versatility. It is indeed versatile.

I was posing the question rhetorically for the sake of thought provocation. Posing a different perspective, if you will.
__________________
Gun control laws benefit only criminals and politicians - but then, I repeat myself.
Life Member, National Rifle Association
Nick_C_S is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 05:04 PM   #30
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 40,274
ok, you seemed to be linking versatility to cleanliness.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 07:09 PM   #31
Pathfinder45
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 7, 2008
Posts: 2,739
The only handgun cartridge that I have been reloading for is 45 Colt. I have used a lot of different powders in that caliber over the years, including 231 and HP-38. Even though they were very good powders, I quit using them as I got spoiled for choices with other powders at prices that were too good to pass up, including free. If I can have only one powder for 45 Colt, Unique is the best all-around. And, in my experience, it burns clean in that application. If I want something for lighter loads, I like Titegroup. For somewhat heavier loads, Hodgdon's HS-7 is excellent. For the heaviest loads I care to shoot, AA-9 is about the best. So, no, I will not really miss 231. There are many good substitutes. Those that I have tried near that end of the spectrum include Red Dot, Green Dot AA-2, etc. Oddly, I have never used Bullseye. You will find something and at least make do. And then there are the gun shows where anything can happen. You might even find your precious 231 long after it's discontinued, from somebody's estate that was boarded away until now. You'll be fine.

Last edited by Pathfinder45; August 19, 2015 at 07:11 PM. Reason: spelling
Pathfinder45 is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 07:54 PM   #32
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 40,274
I use Universal for .45 Colt. Decent loading density and very clean.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 08:12 PM   #33
Jim Watson
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 25, 2001
Location: Alabama
Posts: 15,721
Stock up, ADI is changing the powders we get here as the Clays family.
Probably be at least couple of years before they get around to Universal, though.
Jim Watson is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 08:38 PM   #34
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 5,261
Quote:
Substitute.

we strike the first 6 letters of substitute, leaving "tute."

Then we substitute this for the first 6 letters...

"no frigging way in hell am I using (it a "tute").

In essence, sub is replaced with NO WAY, JOSE.
I am glad you explained it, because I would never have figured it out.

I have shot tens of thousands of rounds, cumulative, loaded with Bullseye in 32 S&W Long, 9mm, 38 Special, 45 ACP. I am going to load up some very light 44 Special loads and see how they shoot. Bullseye has worked very well when I am not trying for magnum loads, or loads above standard. Unique is the more flexible of the two, and I am always surprised about the negative reactions to Unique. I have shot kegs of W231 in the 45 ACP, it shoots great, just as good as Bullseye. I am not going to say that one is cleaner than the other as I can't tell a difference. Bullseye and W231 soot up my M1911's about the same amount.

I am currently shooting Bullseye in Bullseye pistol competition. Functions the pistol. Can't make any claims about accuracy as I am currently a Marksman class shooter. The worst of the bunch. If there was a lower classification, the NRA would have sent me that card. Bullseye pistol is really hard. I have not broken 700 with a centerfire pistol. Still, when I ask for other's advice on 45 ACP target loads, Bullseye is still a staple.

I am not convinced that the better metering of ball powders, which W231 is one, means all that much on target. I have posted data, another way of saying I am too lazy to look it up right now, of AA #5 compared to Bullseye or Unique. Over my chronographs I do not see that AA #5 gives me tighter velocities spreads than Bullseye, or Unique. My charges are all thrown on a Dillion 550B. If metering made a difference I should see it in velocity spreads.

Besides, we are talking handguns here. The ten ring is around two inches at 50 yards. I have not only not put all my bullets in the ten ring at 50 yards, I sometimes miss the whole target!. Now, with one of my .22LR rifles, I am shooting sub dime sized groups at that distance. Handgun accuracy is sort of relative. Relatively big.
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.
Slamfire is offline  
Old August 19, 2015, 08:38 PM   #35
Overkill777
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 4, 2015
Posts: 266
Since 231/hp38 dried up I began stocking up on what I could find; titegroup and bullseye. I guess I have done ok.

These are for 38 and 45 acp. I actually came up with a light 357 magnum load with 158 gr plated bullets using titegroup and it turned out to be a fun and accurate load too.
Overkill777 is offline  
Old August 20, 2015, 06:53 PM   #36
Average Joe
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 29, 2005
Location: Easton, PA
Posts: 1,167
I just switched over to itatute, seems like a good product.
Average Joe is offline  
Old August 20, 2015, 07:14 PM   #37
Ozzieman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 14, 2004
Location: Northern Indiana
Posts: 6,117
Mike, have you ever tried Herco for your 44 specials?
__________________
It was a sad day when I discovered my universal remote control did not in fact control the universe.

Did you hear about the latest study.....5 out of 6 liberals say that Russian Roulette is safe.
Ozzieman is offline  
Old August 20, 2015, 08:09 PM   #38
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 40,274
"Mike, have you ever tried Herco for your 44 specials?"

Nope. By the time I got the .44 Special and started experimenting with powders for it Trail Boss was just coming out.

After reading a few stories about how it performed, I grabbed some and was immediately hooked.

The only powders I tried were 231, Red Dot (a bit better), and the tail end of some Unique I had around the house. Both Red Dot and Unique were so disgustingly filthy that I abandoned them outright.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old August 21, 2015, 03:59 AM   #39
Gravedigger56
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 5, 2015
Location: Indiana
Posts: 125
Titegroup, BE-86, Power Pistol, Clays, to name just a few that I like just as well
Gravedigger56 is offline  
Old August 21, 2015, 03:01 PM   #40
Nick_C_S
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2013
Location: Taxifornia
Posts: 4,896
Well I just purchased 4#'s (4, one-pound containers) of TiteGroup from Cabela's.

Completely untested. Hope it's good stuff.
__________________
Gun control laws benefit only criminals and politicians - but then, I repeat myself.
Life Member, National Rifle Association
Nick_C_S is offline  
Old August 21, 2015, 11:11 PM   #41
DarthNul
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 21, 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 288
Ramshot Zip - if you can get it. I haven't seen it in two years. My 4# jug is nearly dry. It's my "go to" accuracy powder for 9mm and 40 S&W. I use Power Pistol for good accuracy at max power. Zip is nearly interchangeable with 231 and supposedly even cleaner (not that I could tell though).
__________________
The most feared gun control law proposal: Require buyers to register all gun purchases with their wives
DarthNul is offline  
Old August 23, 2015, 05:25 PM   #42
excaliber551
Member
 
Join Date: February 2, 2013
Posts: 25
I waited forever for some W231 to show up but was able to find plenty of HP38. I'm set for a while now. Try your local shop and have them place an order for you. It took a few months but I did get my order filled.
excaliber551 is offline  
Old August 23, 2015, 05:53 PM   #43
g.willikers
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 28, 2008
Posts: 10,447
Once upon a time, when handgun (revolver) reloaders were mostly wanting to duplicate factory loads, but much cheaper, the two standby powders were 2400 for magnum and Unique for non-magnum.
Dirty?
Of course, shooting is a dirty business.
Wadda' expect.
Looking like we just crawled out of a coal mine was just normal after a few hours of shooting.
Had to do some serious hand and beard cleaning to even think about eating lunch.
And we wouldn't dare come in the house with those range clothes.
Times have sure changed - for me, too.
__________________
Walt Kelly, alias Pogo, sez:
“Don't take life so serious, son, it ain't nohow permanent.”
g.willikers is offline  
Old August 24, 2015, 06:49 AM   #44
DAVID NANCARROW
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 5, 2000
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 1,761
W231 has always been an okay powder for my 45 ACPs and it was the first powder I tried in that caliber. Ran it for years until it became hard to find and finally bought a can of Bulls-Eye. At max loads under a 200 gr LSWC, it groups much better for me than 231 ever did at any charge weight.
I don't like the way Bulls-Eye meters as much, but its been a more accurate powder in this cartridge. Have not done a comparison on jacketed bullets but that is my next test.
DAVID NANCARROW is offline  
Old August 24, 2015, 07:41 AM   #45
Ozzieman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 14, 2004
Location: Northern Indiana
Posts: 6,117
Quote:
Nope. By the time I got the .44 Special and started experimenting with powders for it Trail Boss was just coming out.
For the most part I use W231 for just about everything (45 ACP, 9mm, 44 sp and mag, 38’s) in the medium range but for my N frame specials and single actions I seem to get better accuracy with Herco. Granted if you don’t stay in the upper power range it can be dirty.
Never used Trail Boss, guess it's time I try, if I can find any. Luckily I have a full 8 pound can of Herco. (but very little W231).
__________________
It was a sad day when I discovered my universal remote control did not in fact control the universe.

Did you hear about the latest study.....5 out of 6 liberals say that Russian Roulette is safe.
Ozzieman is offline  
Old August 24, 2015, 02:11 PM   #46
Reloader54
Member
 
Join Date: January 8, 2015
Location: Tempe,AZ
Posts: 34
so....what replaces 231

I use win231 for my reloading. I reload .357mag, .38 spl, .38 +p, .45long and .45acp. And I to have not been able to find any of it. But when I started reloading I started with Unique. and that I've been able to find. I'm on my last bottle of win231 and I bought 3 pounds of unique. And this will last me a few years. Because the .45long is the one that takes the most powder charge. And that is 7.5gr with a 230gr bullet. And this is also a medium load for this round. I only shoot paper targets and some metal silhouettes. And My loads do just fine for this type of shooting. And I've even been able to hit metal plate out to 300 meters with these same loads as well. And my gun likes this load as well. plus there is not a lot of recoil either.
__________________
Jeff Segal

Proud supporter of the Second Amendment, Bill of Rights, and the US Constitution. Also believe in Small Government and one that is limited by the people.
Reloader54 is offline  
Old August 25, 2015, 06:24 AM   #47
mikejonestkd
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 3, 2006
Location: Brockport, NY
Posts: 3,268
231 is a versatile powder that works well in almost all mid range loadings for a wide variety of cartridges. Its easily my favorite powder.

BTW- Cabelas has it in stock as of 7:00am EST today......go get it!!
__________________
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
mikejonestkd is offline  
Old August 25, 2015, 05:58 PM   #48
9mmfun
Junior Member
 
Join Date: July 10, 2011
Posts: 9
Yeah, I was going to say more W231 but Reloader54 beat me to it. Check out Cabelas online.
9mmfun is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:18 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2018 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.09956 seconds with 10 queries