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Old December 23, 2018, 09:59 AM   #1
Brutus
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230gr..45ACP loads

In a previous thread I queried as to whether 200gr. loads poi could be raised to accommodate a 4-1/4" commander with fixed sights regulated for .230gr. bullets through reloading. What I got was a lengthy and very interesting conversation on the physics of semi autos, which I have been following.
At any rate I bit the bullet so to speak and purchased 500 230gr. Hap bullets to use in my commander. The goal is to replicate the performance of the 230gr. Speer gold dot's that I have chosen for self defense, advertised velocity from a short barrel is 820fps.

All of my 40 years of collected .45 ACP has been with 200 grain target loads from 5" barrels with adjustable sights so this is new territory for me.

Will be using CCI primers and Starline brass. Powders I have on hand include:

Universal Clays.
HP-38
Tight group
AAC #7
Power Pistol
Autocomp
CFE pistol


Any suggestions based on previous experience would be greatly appreciated.
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Old December 23, 2018, 11:41 AM   #2
Unclenick
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The Gold Dots have plated jackets, though the alloy they plate on is harder than a pure copper plated bullet's exterior is. I had a conversation about this with a Speer tech who had run the plating machine himself. He said that despite the alloy not being pure copper they were still a bit softer than a cup and core jacket and that allowed them to use a bit more powder than a cup and core bullet. So you may have trouble duplicating the load exactly, but I think you'll find POI is fine and you then just want to make the recoil feel about the same for practice purposes, regardless of exact velocity. In general, for a given velocity, a powder that gets you there with a heavier charge will produce more total recoil, but the perception of recoil sometimes is sharper with a fast powder in a locking slide and barrel gun. So you'll have to experiment. Try something quick, like Clays, at the one extreme and something slower like Power Pistol at the other. See which tends to give you the feel of the commercially loaded Gold Dots.
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Old December 23, 2018, 01:05 PM   #3
tangolima
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Plated bullets have more friction than jacketed bullet, so it requires more charge to attain the same speed. Bear that in mind when working up the load, as chasing speed single-mindedly could be risky.

I myself like using slower powder for pistols. It could be not as clean burning as faster powders, but it is more forgiving and less likely to double charge. Out of the list of powders I have used power pistol and I like it.

-TL

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Old December 23, 2018, 01:50 PM   #4
44 AMP
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Quote:
Any suggestions based on previous experience would be greatly appreciated.
I'm afraid I don't have any personal experience with the powders you listed, sorry. I have heard of them, but never used any.

My previous experience, loading the .45ACP since the early 1970s, is

6.5gr Unique. Standard primer,
I use it for both lead and jacketed.
It is the listed "factory duplication load" in my old Lyman manuals, and they say 877fps from a 5" 1911A1.
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Old December 23, 2018, 03:01 PM   #5
Brutus
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Back in the 70's when I got started in 1911's I was shooting 230gr. JRN with 6.0 to 6.3 grains of Unique with good effect in my Colt Gold Cup. I also used it in .357, and .44Mag for target loads. It was one of my favorite powders.
Fast forward to the Obama powder glut and I ran out of Unique and couldn't find any, as a result I dipped into my shotgun powder stash of Universal Clays which has approx. the same burn rate. I found that in addition to metering much better it also provided similar accuracy and velocity with a smaller charge in powder. As a result it has replaced Unique in my .44 and 357's.

Problem is in finding load data for Universal with .230gr. 45ACP loads in my dozen reloading manuals.
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Old December 23, 2018, 11:31 PM   #6
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OP, out of the powders you listed I know and would use HP-38(AKA WW-231). AA#7 is too slow. It's good for .38Super IPSC loads.

I don't know enough about the others to make any comments.
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Old December 24, 2018, 01:06 AM   #7
Aguila Blanca
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I also use HP-38/Win 231. It's what I started doing .45 ACP with, and I've never had any reason to change.
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