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Old November 21, 2010, 09:41 PM   #1
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45 colt reduced loads with blue dot?

I have about a half pound of blue dot left. I've decided that I don't like (or my gun doesn't like) this particular powder and I thinking of a way to use it besides load development or fertilizer.

My girlfriend likes shooting the Blackhawk but the loads I am testing are usually on the bottom end of 44 mag energies. The recoil is a bit much for her. Usually 5 or 6 and shes done.

My question is how low can you go with this powder? I was thinking of just making a bunch of reduced loads with the remainder of it. Something pleasant for her to shoot.

I am using 250gr RNFP hard cast bullets. I don't want to get a bullet stuck in the barrel obviously, but in your collective experience, what is a safe bottom end for loading Blue Dot for .45 colt with the listed bullet weight?

I figure there will be significant unburnt powder at lower pressures. Just more cleaning to me, unless it poses a significant danger that I am unaware of?
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Old November 21, 2010, 10:00 PM   #2
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Blue Dot works great in .45 Colt for "on the bottom end of 44 mag energies" loads. (that's how I used up all my BD that I didn't like in .357 Mag) For reduced loads, try Red Dot.
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Old November 21, 2010, 11:27 PM   #3
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I don't think it poses any significant dangers, as long as you don't go below published minimum loads.

If the problem is recoil, why not go with a lighter bullet? The other thing is that you could stick with your current load with the 250 grain bullets, and just save them for yourself, loading something a bit lighter for her.
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Old November 22, 2010, 06:35 AM   #4
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Blue Dot will give erratic results at the low end. With moderate to heavy loads it does much better. It needs high pressure to burn cleanly and consistently, otherwise, it will be dirty with rather poor accuracy at least in my experience.

When I was new I loaded up a box full for .44 Mags using Blue Dot. I think it was 12.1 or 12.5 grains. (Have to check my notebook.) Starting load.

Anyway, velocities were all over the place. Accuracy was not that great. Had the same issue in .357 Magnum with Blue Dot, then I bumped up the load and started shooting excellent groups. Used it in my 10mm, again for moderate to heavy loads, and it worked great there, too. Now, I love the stuff.

If you want a light load with a heavy bullet in .44 magnum, then best to try at least a medium burning powder.

Otherwise, as someone stated, use a lighter bullet and a more moderate load.
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Old November 22, 2010, 01:04 PM   #5
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As an older reloader, I used BlueDot extensively with the magnums and with excellent results. If you have some of the older Hercules/Alliant powder manuals, you will note many Bluedot loads with magnums..
These days most all such data using BlueDot & magnums have dissappeared. I was particularity fond of BlueDot with 41Mag. There are no loads listed in 41Mag in my 2008 reloaders guide.
With all the other powders out there, I have quit using BlueDot alltogether.
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Old November 22, 2010, 01:52 PM   #6
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I don't think it poses any significant dangers, as long as you don't go below published minimum loads.
This is prudent advice; however, I haven't found much reloading data with published "minimum" loads. Often there will be a "starting" load; but, some data don't even label the lightest loads shown. Some of the new guides list only a "maximum" load with a recommendation to start with a reduced load of a given percentage. An exception is the "minimum" load listing from early Alliant Cowboy Action data.

Here's an extract for the .45 Colt with a 250 gr lead bullet:

4.6 gr (min) - 661 fps

American Select
4.6 gr (min) - 603 fps

5.7 gr (min) - 579 fps

Red Dot
5.0 gr (min) - 712 fps

6.3 gr (min) - 564 fps

Norrick, hopefully your girlfriend will find any of these minimum listed loads within her recoil tolerance.
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