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Post by dryheat on Sun Aug 11, 2019 2:38 pm

I have a couple of questions regarding reloads for 45 ACP 1911 Bullseye loads. We, my son and I, shoot bullseye matches in Arizona. Slow fire is at reduces 50 yard targets at 25 yards. We are currently using Missouri Bullet company 185 SWC coated bullets and 3.6 grs. BE. The bullets weight out at closer to 188 grains then the stated 185, probably the coating. They seem to be quite accurate and the load functions the guns well. However the BE is dirty-smokey and makes cleaning the brass more of a chore that I think it should be. Too, the range in covered in decomposed granite and the brass gets some dirty from that too.  We haven’t chronographed the load so not sure about the velocity but recoil isn’t bad and as I stated it seems quite accurate. So, my questions are1) does anyone use a similar load using a different, cleaner burning powder and2) do you shoot at a range with similar ground cover and how do you initially clean your brass? We also shoot Hunter’s Pistol Silhouette with T/C .22 Hornet and reload that brass but as they are single shot the brass is relative clean after the match and I just wipe it off before lubing it for reloading. I have a Dillon 550 set up for both the 45 and the Hornet. Appreciate any suggestion, experience.

Thanks, Ed
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Post by SteveT on Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:05 pm

Bullseye and Vhitavuori N310 are very similar, except N310 is a little hotter and cleaner. If you like 3.6 BE? I would start a tenth or two lower with N310 

However My VV reloading manual does not have a load using N310 for 185gr Lead bullets and this charge weight is below the minimum recommended load for 200gr lead, so you are operating off the manufacturers guidance. Use caution and proceed at your own risk. Of course the same is true of your load and the Alliant 2019 manual.

A lot of smoke is caused by lube. I don't know if that's true of coated bullets, I have no experience with them.

Another cause of smoke is unburnt powder. 3.6 is near the low end of BE loads. Smokeless powder burns better and more completely under pressure. The pressure in your load will be pretty low which is probably contributing to the smoke. It's probably nice and soft shooting, but 4.0gr will probably burn cleaner.
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Post by S148 on Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:10 pm

Coated bullets produce way less smoke than traditionally wax-lubed cast bullets. 

https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/3/7/coated-bullets-the-future-of-lead-bullets-for-handloaders/

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Post by james r chapman on Sun Aug 11, 2019 3:47 pm

3.6 is a good but light load. Probably not getting a full seal in chamber will result in dirty brass. She’ll ctcher and stainless pin tumbling takes care of all those problems
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Post by James Hensler on Sun Aug 11, 2019 4:12 pm

I was shooting 3.8 grains of N310 with a .466 crimp and OAL of 1.250 but I think it is too soft now! Chrono said 660 -680 and with a 10lb spring I never had a problem. Now I am experimenting with 4.2 and it just feels better. It seems crisper and at 25 yards from my rest it is basically keyholes.


Last edited by James Hensler on Sun Aug 11, 2019 4:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by jglenn21 on Sun Aug 11, 2019 4:39 pm

4.0 of.WST should work just fine with the 185.. i shoot that load with 180 FBSWC at 25.. cleaner and feels.a touch softer.than BE.
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Post by oldsalt444 on Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:17 pm

3.8 WST is my go to load for 185 and 200 lead bullets.  WST has a softer kick than BE since it has a slightly slower burn rate and it's a little cleaner than BE.  You might want to try 160 gr. SWC from Brazos or Bob's.  Less weight means less recoil.
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Post by bruce martindale on Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:14 pm

Don't concern your self about weight variations.

You're using coated so the smoke is the powder itself. Side note, a long time ago when I fooled with loads instead of learning to shoot...(ya know, ya grow), l found unlubed bullets didn't smoke until a higher loading was reached.

Light loads with light bullets won't seal the case to the chamber unless you start with a tighter fit. For light loads, I use a Lee FCD to resize after depriming with a 45-70 die. Test them, mine feed just fine. FCP as a final die screws up lead bullet loads.....they didn't do the matth right.

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Post by dryheat on Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:25 pm

Thanks to all for the information and suggestions. I’m going to try most of them to see what works best for our guns. In browsing through internet sites I found one load: Hornady 185-gr XTP    5.6 GRs.   W231 which, through a Kart Barrel, gave 1.35”.Shooting Times /Bob Miller PhD.-2018. I might buy some XTP bullets just to test the load but don’t think the added expense justifies the cost. I do intend to try the 185 coated lead bullets with that charge just to see how it works. There is another reason, we shoot Hunters Pistol Silhouette with .22 Hornet and use 4.5 GRS. of 231 which burns clean and seems, at least to us, give good accuracy and plenty of oomph to know down the Rams, albeit it rather slow. Using 231 would let me stock one less type of powder. For years I loaded .38 SPL. And .45 ACP on my Star and there were standard powder bars that came with the press. I’m not sure but I believe the .45 was 4.2 BE.

Ed
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Post by Allgoodhits on Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:48 pm

4.2 BE should be an acceptable starting point for just about any .45 acp load. Many use 3.5 - 4.0 for 180-200 gr lead or coated bullets. 4.2 will just be more potent, but not excessive in most guns with those bullets. However, 4.2 may be just a tad light for 185 JHP bullets, but each gun differs at least slightly, some vastly, depending on how tight it is, springs used and whether it has a slide mounted scope or not.

W231 is a good powder as well. Generally, in my experience out of my guns, it takes more W231 by weight, than BE, to accomplish the same task. Understand the difference between weight and volume.
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Post by tovaert on Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:04 am

I'm new to this but I have a little extra data. I load 185gr XTP's with 3.8gr of Alliant E3 powder, Starline, WLP's, 1.220" OAL, no crimp (I re-size after seating). Good Ransom results out of my older Colt NM 1911 (with a lightened slide), 12.5# WC spring, full-length guide rod, Schumann 1:16 barrel. *Very* clean burning. Supposed to be temperature stable too. Soft shooting ~650fps MV. I've tested 3.9, 4.0, 4.1...4.1 gets you up to ~750fps.

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Post by Allgoodhits on Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:07 pm

tovaert wrote:I'm new to this but I have a little extra data. I load 185gr XTP's with 3.8gr of Alliant E3 powder, Starline, WLP's, 1.220" OAL, no crimp (I re-size after seating). Good Ransom results out of my older Colt NM 1911 (with a lightened slide), 12.5# WC spring, full-length guide rod, Schumann 1:16 barrel. *Very* clean burning. Supposed to be temperature stable too. Soft shooting ~650fps MV. I've tested 3.9, 4.0, 4.1...4.1 gets you up to ~750fps.

Alliant E3 is an excellent under appreciated powder. It is fast burning, high power, and low density so it fills the case nicely even with low powder (weight) charges. Similar to Hodgdon Clays. I have experienced very good results with heavier lead bullets, than with lighter JHP type bullets.
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Post by tovaert on Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:05 am

Allgoodhits wrote:
tovaert wrote:I'm new to this but I have a little extra data. I load 185gr XTP's with 3.8gr of Alliant E3 powder, Starline, WLP's, 1.220" OAL, no crimp (I re-size after seating). Good Ransom results out of my older Colt NM 1911 (with a lightened slide), 12.5# WC spring, full-length guide rod, Schumann 1:16 barrel. *Very* clean burning. Supposed to be temperature stable too. Soft shooting ~650fps MV. I've tested 3.9, 4.0, 4.1...4.1 gets you up to ~750fps.

Alliant E3 is an excellent under appreciated powder. It is fast burning, high power, and low density so it fills the case nicely even with low powder (weight) charges. Similar to Hodgdon Clays. I have experienced very good results with heavier lead bullets, than with lighter JHP type bullets.
I also use it in my 9mm. Works well there too.

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Post by james r chapman on Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:23 am

just a wee bit harder to locate than BE, WST, or most any others..
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Post by Wobbley on Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:44 am

Jim: What’s the powders most used in Trap these days. I presume Red Dot is as popular as ever...
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Post by james r chapman on Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:20 pm

Clay Dot, Clays, Red Dot, Winchester Super Handicap (1255 FPS 1 1/8 oz shot).

I know a few guys were raving about American Select but can never find it.

I load 3/4 oz using TiteWad 
Oh, and 700X
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Post by Allgoodhits on Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:32 pm

james r chapman wrote:Clay Dot, Clays, Red Dot, Winchester Super Handicap (1255 FPS 1 1/8 oz shot).

I know a few guys were raving about American Select but can never find it.

I load 3/4 oz using TiteWad 
Oh, and 700X

I have never tried American Select. However with a burn rate between WST and Bullseye and a density between VV N310 and Clays, it should be a great powder for .45 ACP or many straight wall case target loads.

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