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Old January 5, 2019, 08:04 PM   #1
dahermit
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Titegroup is very strange.

I have decided to use up the 8 pounds of Titegroup I bought about two years ago when Bullseye was not to be found. In the past I noticed an acrid smell when shooting Titegroup with my powder coated Lee 158-RNFP 125 cast bullets. I thought that possibly it was the powder coating I was smelling, but lately I have been shooting Clays with the same powder coating and there has been no acrid smell with that.

Today when I went back to 3.4 grains of Titegroup (.38 Spl.) with my 125 powder coated cast lead bullet, the acrid smell was back...so it is not likely the smell is being generated by the powder coating.

Also, I noticed a black smudge around the holes in my test target when using Titegroup...I have no idea where that black stuff is coming from.

Any comments?
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Last edited by dahermit; January 6, 2019 at 07:59 AM.
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Old January 5, 2019, 08:46 PM   #2
pete2
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I shoot Titegroup in 9MM with plated bullets. I haven't noticed any strange smells. I have shot coated bullets a few times and there is a strange smell from the paint. Kinda like burnt plastic. I don't know what powder was used.
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Old January 5, 2019, 09:11 PM   #3
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Looks and sounds like your PC is burning. ...Or melting and capturing carbon?

I stopped playing with Titegroup about 15 years ago.
It was too ... umm ... "nippy"? "Snappy"? "Violent"? "Aggressive"? ... in 9mm and .380.
It just didn't feel right, seemed hot (temperature, not pressure level), and wasn't working for me the way that everyone else claimed it would.

The only loads I ever found that I liked were actually with .44 Mag and some 240 gr swaged bullets. Light, fun, slow (725 fps). TG worked perfectly there.
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Old January 5, 2019, 09:35 PM   #4
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Yup. TG and powercoat make a funky smell. Ive noticed it in some 9mm loads. I THINK its birning the powder coat.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:13 PM   #5
Mike38
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Quote:
TG and powercoat make a funky smell.
Yes it does. First time I shot TG and coated bullets, I though the building was on fire.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:21 PM   #6
dahermit
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Quote:
I THINK its birning the powder coat.
Tomorrow I will go out and recover some of those coated bullets from my shooting berm...normally the recovered bullets show no indication of burning with other powders (mostly Bullseye), but I will examine some of those I shot today with Titegroup...that black sooty smudge on the target has to be coming from somewhere.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:25 PM   #7
dahermit
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It just didn't feel right, seemed hot (temperature, not pressure level)
Yeah one Summer, before I read all the stuff about Titegroup being unusually hot, my K38 seemed to get much hotter shooting my rapid fire string of 72 rounds. I had forgotten about the heat until today.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:25 PM   #8
Crankylove
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I use it in .45 Auto and .41 Special loads.

Never noticed an odd smell, but I’ve only ever used plated, jacketed, and cast, no coated yet for me.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:27 PM   #9
Shane Tuttle
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I HIGHLY doubt this would be the culprit. But I'm grasping at straws, here.

Are you using different primers than you usually do?
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:32 PM   #10
David R
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At least one company that makes coated bullets says stay away from Titegroup. It works great with jacketed in my 9mm.

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Old January 5, 2019, 10:43 PM   #11
dahermit
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Quote:
Are you using different primers than you usually do?
I always use Federal Standard Small Pistol Primers.
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Old January 5, 2019, 10:54 PM   #12
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I bought 2# of TiteGroup during the Great Powder Shortage just to have something to load... boy, that was a mistake. Unfortunately, the stuff also lasts forever, too.

I've used it in 3 different cartridges, it is definitely a hot powder. 50 rounds through the Blackhawk and I can hardly hold the pistol to eject the empties.
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Old January 6, 2019, 12:47 AM   #13
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Can't believe nobody's nailed this yet. I assumed the answer would be found in the first response.

But actually, you answered your own question:

Quote:
it is definitely a hot powder.
Bingo! - TiteGroup runs HOT! It's burning the coating; and that's what you're smelling. Been there. Done that.

It can also wreak havoc with lead bullets too - for the same reason. The heat seems to lay down lead in the barrel. It didn't take long for me to figure out that TG's true home is pushing plated bullets. Can't burn the plating. Fortunately for me, I like, load, and shoot a lot of plated bullets. So it didn't take long for me to use up the 4#s of TG I purchased untested a few years back. I did however, choose not to purchase any more. I found its niche and made a heck of a lot of excellent range fodder with it. But for me, W231 can do everything TG can do, and more. And by "more," I mean lead slugs. (I don't like coated bullets at all and don't use them.) I prefer propellants that are a little more versatile.

So yes, I have a strong positive opinion of TiteGroup - but it's just not quite right for me. If you're the type of loader whose main interest is to crank out large quantities of basic range ammo; then TiteGroup is tough to beat. It serves that purpose really well.
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Old January 6, 2019, 05:38 AM   #14
dahermit
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Quote:
If you're the type of loader whose main interest is to crank out large quantities of basic range ammo; then TiteGroup is tough to beat. It serves that purpose really well.
I shoot 72 rounds every day the ambient temperature is at least 50 degrees (lately shooting if it hits 40), everyday, seven days a week...I have my own steel bowling pin range. So, my loading consists of mostly .38 Spl., Lee cast 125 RNFP bullets that I powder coat (for its perceived advantages). My normal powder was 2.7 Bullseye but could not find it anymore so I switched to 3.4 of Titegroup. But, it seems to not be so ideal for my large amount of range ammo.
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Old January 6, 2019, 05:40 AM   #15
dahermit
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Quote:
I HIGHLY doubt this would be the culprit. But I'm grasping at straws, here.
Are you using different primers than you usually do?
You have peaked my interest...what rationale would suggest primers causing a black ring of soot around the bullet holes in the target paper?
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Old January 6, 2019, 06:34 AM   #16
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Once at the range they shut it down because they smelled burnt wiring and thought there might be an electrical problem. Then they saw my ammo on the bench and realized what it was. Yup, High Tec coated bullets and Titegroup in my .357.
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Old January 6, 2019, 08:02 AM   #17
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I’ve also found titegorup leaves your cases and barrel very sooty if loading the min charge, I switched over to HP-38 which is much cleaner and does not burn as hot. Now I need to use up the 2lbs of TG collecting dust in my cabinet....
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Old January 6, 2019, 09:05 AM   #18
dahermit
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I’ve also found titegorup leaves your cases and barrel very sooty if loading the min charge, I switched over to HP-38 which is much cleaner and does not burn as hot. Now I need to use up the 2lbs of TG collecting dust in my cabinet....
Now I need to use up the 8lbs of TG collecting dust in my cabinet....
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Old January 6, 2019, 11:11 AM   #19
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I read on a couple other forums that power coating reacts to Titegroup. I can't verify, but a few PC shooters remarked they had similar experiences with PC and Titegroup (kinda dissolves the coating)
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Old January 6, 2019, 02:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
It didn't take long for me to figure out that TG's true home is pushing plated bullets. Can't burn the plating.

That's exactly right. I use is a lot and still do. Yes it will soot up your cases if you load it to low, I use it and W231 in 9mm, Titegroup for practice loads and W231 for high end loads. I carry my 231 loads with XTPs for SD.

I have a lot of titegroup here and will continue to use it in 9mm for practice loads.

It doesn't behave well in 38 or 357 mag because of the heat and low volume.
It's not dangerous but it wasn't meant for that when it was designed.
In 9mm, 40, and 45 it works really well which is what it was designed for.
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Old January 6, 2019, 03:37 PM   #21
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It (TiteGroup) doesn't behave well in 38 or 357 mag because of the heat and low volume.
I will 90% agree.

Clearly, TG is designed for semi-auto use. But I did get it to work well with 148 plated DEWC's. Because DEWC's sit deep in the case, the bullet takes up the volume; thus, making for more consistent burns - or at least that's what the chronograph tells me.

Honorable mention goes to 125 JHP's (38 Spl+P). I loaded them up to 1000 f/s (999 to be exact 4" bbl) and they run really nice. Really nice. Gives my Model 67 the perfect little snap with next to no recoil. It's a fantastic loading. I'm going to miss that one when the last of them are shot (soon). BTW, I suspect pressure is a bit beyond +P with this one. Please do your own work ups and never "chase velocities."

On a related note, Hodgdon advertises TG as being non-position sensitive, or however they word it. Well, in my tests with low power 38 Special (lead DEWC's running around 730 f/s), it IS position sensitive. I will give Hodgdon a break on this one though. They were likely talking about how it's usually or supposed to be used - i.e. semi-auto. What I did was an extreme scenario.
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Old January 6, 2019, 04:21 PM   #22
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I will rejoice when my supply of TiteGroup is gone. (Less than 1# left!)
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Old January 6, 2019, 05:04 PM   #23
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After quite a few years of using Titegroup exclusively for 230g RN Cu plated .45 Auto I have no complaints whatsoever.
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Old January 6, 2019, 05:39 PM   #24
dahermit
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Quote:
Clearly, TG is designed for semi-auto use.
I have used it in 9MM with my cast Lee 125 grain RN2R plain based powder coated bullets and have no complaints with it in that venue (not dirty, no apparent "burned plastic" odor), albeit with a different powder coat...PPG Red instead of my Sky Blue from Powder by the Pound (not all powder coating powders are formulated the same).
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Old January 6, 2019, 06:20 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by locknloader
I’ve also found titegorup leaves your cases and barrel very sooty if loading the min charge
That's the cause of the black rings around the bullet holes. The bullets pick a little up from the gas that bypasses the bullet upon firing and then gets some from the barrel that was left by the last shot, then is having it wiped off by the target paper on its way through.
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