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Old May 6, 2013, 02:04 PM   #1
Join Date: May 5, 2013
Posts: 16
Loading 45 acp with 230 gr JHP

Hey guys,

I'm new to reloading, as well as this form. So bare with my terminology! I have reloaded probably about 40 shells completely.(have not shot them and don't not want to until I know it is safe to do so, because of the way I have reloaded them)I used a lee 50th anniversary reloading kit with RCBS 3-die set( it seems to fit and work well with the lee press). Bullseye powder, federal shells , Winchester small primers, and hornady xpt 230 gr JHP. I have only one reloading book, Lyman 49th edition and it does not have 230 gr JHP. The closest is 225 gr JHP. It states that the OAL should be 1.243", I have reloaded mine to be around 1.200 give or take .005...will my bullets shoot safety??

Last edited by kmherring911; May 6, 2013 at 02:05 PM. Reason: Errors
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Old May 6, 2013, 02:35 PM   #2
Join Date: January 23, 2013
Location: Central Florida
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I'm sure that you're a little over-anxious but you should have asked your questions before loading your ammo. I'm also sure someone with much more experience than I will be along shortly to help you out if you would tell us how much powder you used. That, more than anything else, will determine if your ammo is safe or if it will blow up your gun.
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Old May 6, 2013, 02:48 PM   #3
Join Date: March 29, 2010
Location: Eastern Iowa USA
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First off, what caliber are you loading? I think it's .45, but I don't want to assume. Secondly, what was your measured load of Bullseye? How are you measuring it, scale or dipper? Bullseye is a fast powder and if you are near max, your measurements should be made carefully.Generally speaking, a 5 grain difference on projectiles over 200 grain in weight is not critical, but you loaded them almost 50 thousandths shorter than the minimum for a lighter bullet, which possibly could cause a high pressure problem. If your powder load was 5 grains or more, the safe procedure would be to take them apart and start over. There are a lot of variables involved which a newcomer may not be aware of. The best thing to do is have an experienced loader help you, or find a load book with the same components you are using. When asking for help/advice on these forums, give as many details as possible, nobody will complain if you give too much.
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Old May 6, 2013, 02:57 PM   #4
Join Date: May 5, 2013
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I'm loading a 45 acp, my stats show(according to Lyman 49th edition) that a 225 gr. jacketed HP OAL 1.243" loaded with bullseye should start at 3.1 grains and max is 5.3 grains....I loaded 4.4 grains to kind of be in the middle. And my OAL is around 1.200 give or take .005
I am using the lee powder measure and the lee powder scales

Last edited by kmherring911; May 6, 2013 at 02:59 PM. Reason: Adding info
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:00 PM   #5
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Each bullet maker specifies a different OAL. Check the Hornady webpage.
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Old May 6, 2013, 06:48 PM   #6
Misssissippi Dave
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There is a tutoral thread at the top of the page on loading .45 with lead bullets. It is a good read. I know you said you are using JHP bullets but much of this information applies to all .45 loading.

Loading shorter than the published data about .010 or less normally isn't a big problem with this caliber. I believe you have gone a bit too far to determine how much extra pressure is going to be created. You probably could shoot them without causing a big problem. My guess is they are going to be about equal to a 4.6 grain of powder load with the listed OAL. This is assuming you are using the same bullet listed in the data and the same primer. A different bullet even with the same weight and both being call JHP bullets can be quite different with the same amount of powder. One may seat deeper in the case at it's base than the other. The amount of bullet surface on the rifling also may be different. The hardness of the bullet could also be different. With all these possible differences and probably some others as well is the reason most of us will work a load up from at or near the lowest level to the level where it becomes an accurate load. Generally I find most powders I have used in .45 apc are most accurate over a .3 grain spread. I generally load up a box of 50 at the middle of that spread for further testing. I know it is hard to stop at only a few rounds to test something again but it is better than having to pull a bunch of bullets later.

My test loads normally are in either .1 or .2 grain steps and I load only 5 or 10 rounds for each step while testing. My first concern is they will cycle the pistol and next is accuracy.

Do use a clean target when testing and at least some type of support to remove the human factor as much as possible. You want to be certain there is a hole in the paper for each round fired. When you can't verify a hole was made it is time to check the barrel for an obstruction.
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Old May 6, 2013, 08:19 PM   #7
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The 225 gr. JHP shown in the Lyman data is designed for .45 Colt. They use a long OACL, most likely, to seat the bullet to where the case-mouth is below the crimp groove. With a 230 gr. XTP, I would use an OACL of 1.230". For Bullseye powder data go here: or working up from a Start Charge the Lyman data for the 225 gr. JHP will be fine for use with a 230 gr. XTP loaded to an OACL of 1.230".
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Old May 6, 2013, 09:44 PM   #8
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+1 on MDave's rec to read the 45 load Sticky at the top of the page. It will give you a good idea on how the round works and loading in general.

You need to do just a little more research and gather an understanding of the various parts of working up a load. The Lyman manual has both the 225 JHP noted and a 230 TMJ on the next page in the manual. As noted earlier, the 225 in the manual has a primary purpose in another cartridge. Pay no attention to the crimp groove.

I would suggest you consider seating to a longer COL, as the 1.200 is probably short for that bullet in 45 ACP and could result in increased pressure.

Agree with the recs of 57K to check the mfg site.

Somewhere in the "middle" of all this data is the load you need. Meaning you need to start in the average of the minimum charge weights and work up from there. I also agree that you need to start with a OAL of 1.23 to 1.235 with the XTP bullet.
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Old May 6, 2013, 10:20 PM   #9
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Hornady recommends 1.210" for the 230gr XTP. Your OAL of 1.2 is fine. Don't sweat it.
"Once you quit hearing sir and ma'am, the rest is soon to follow." - Cormack McCarthy
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Old May 6, 2013, 11:12 PM   #10
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Alright thanks guys!I do thank y'all trying to help out! I will keep all this info on stand by next time I get back to my work bench.
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