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185 gr Zero JHP velocity

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Wobbley
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Post by pgg Sun Jun 26, 2022 6:27 pm

Roze finally got some of the 185 Zeros in stock so I got some and loaded some up.

Is there a generally accepted sweet spot for velocity with these? I'm trying a load with N312. It isn't a common powder but I have a bunch of it. Its burn rate is a touch slower than N310. Load data is scarce, but there's a bit out there. I don't think VV is sending any to the US these days.

Starline brass, Federal gold medal magnum large pistol primers. (Don't have non-magnum Fed GM.) 1.210" OAL, 0.472" taper crimp.

I just loaded up a few at lowish charges for function testing and basic good reloading habits. My guess was that 4.0 - 4.2 would be a reasonable range to find an accurate load.

I shot these at 50y to start zeroing a new-to-me gun. First shots were high left 5-6 ring, after a bunch of clicks they were hitting in the black. I have not done any accuracy testing yet. At some point I'll put it on a Ransom Rest.

4.0 gr averaged 681 fps with a SD of 26.3 and ES of 76 (651 - 727).
4.2 gr averaged 729 fps with a SD of 22.6 and an ES of 77 (684 - 761).

I am a little disappointed in the relatively high ES. Both loads cycled the gun fine and felt fairly soft.

I sort of expect that if I bump the charge up a bit and move the bullets a bit faster, the ES will shrink some. Hence my question - is there a typical velocity range the 185s like out of a 1911. The gun is a David Sams.

All of my bullseye shooting thus far has been with iron sights on a 9mm Beretta service pistol, and a S&W Model 41. This is my first foray into .45acp with a dot.

Thanks.

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Post by james r chapman Sun Jun 26, 2022 6:46 pm

I remember my 185 jhp loads chrono at 770-790
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Post by PhotoEscape Sun Jun 26, 2022 7:33 pm

Interesting!!!  Parameters for your load is kind of between ASYM and Zero factory loads.  Except crimp.  0.472" is pretty much no crimp at all, just barely touching bullet.  I would start from increasing crimp to 0.469 - 0.470 and use 1.205" (ASYM) OAL and 4.2 gr of N312.  (ASYM factory is about 4.10 of N310).  SD and ES are functions of consistency of charges, so I'd check your reloading equipment, and powder measure specifically.  IMO, objective would be ~750fps for the load.

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Post by RoyDean Sun Jun 26, 2022 10:55 pm

AP

Did you mean N310?

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Post by S148 Mon Jun 27, 2022 7:48 am

I wouldn't get too hung up on extreme spread. Your targets will tell you what the gun likes, regardless of ES.

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Post by pgg Mon Jun 27, 2022 8:46 am

S148 wrote:I wouldn't get too hung up on extreme spread. Your targets will tell you what the gun likes, regardless of ES.
Oh I'll definitely do accuracy testing before settling on a load. 

The high ES in the initial safety/function testing just struck me as a red flag. I have much more experience reloading rifle and that is often a sign that you're not close to an accuracy node.

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Post by PhotoEscape Mon Jun 27, 2022 9:56 am

RoyDean wrote:AP

Did you mean N310?
No, N312 as it is what OP is using.  This and N318 are older powders, predecessors of N310/N320 going back 15-20 years.  Or to be exact, VV was producing all of them concurrently.  N312 was a tad slower then N310 and N318 was a tad faster then N320.  Here is the old 2007 chart of top 35 powders by burning rate.
Interestingly enough BE is #4 in this chart, while in more recent charts BE went down to spots beyond first dozen.  This is where Dave/fc60's (see another thread here - 4.0 Bullseye & Brazos 200 lswc) desire to experiment with Nitro 100, E3, TiteWad comes from.  All these powders are right in N310 vicinity nowadays.

POWDER BURNING RATE CHART
(INCLUDES CURRENT AND OBSOLETE POWDERS)
1 R-1, Norma
2 N100, Accurate
3 N310, Vihtavuori
4 Bullseye, Alliant
5 BA 10, Vectan
6 WST, Winchester
7 P805, RWS
8 N312, Vihtavuori
9 W-230, Winchester
10 Solo 1000, Accurate
11 Clays, Hodgdon
12 Red Dot, Alliant
13 N318, Vihtavuori
14 P 801, RWS
15 Hi-Skor 700X, IMR
16 AS, Vectan
17 N320, Vihtavuori
18 TR 100, Hodgdon
19 Green Dot, Alliant
20 International, Hodgdon
21 No. 2, Accurate
22 N321, Vihtavuori
23 AS25, Vectan
24 N324, Vihtavuori
25 HP-38, Hodgdon
26 w-230P, Winchester
27 W-231, Winchester
28 N325, Vihtavuori
29 W-452, Winchester
30 N330, Vihtavuori
31 HS-5, Hodgdon
32 PB, IMR
33 N331, Vihtavuori
34 No. 5, Accurate
35 BA 9, Vectan








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Post by CR10X Mon Jun 27, 2022 11:11 am

(1) Personal opinion, but old VV 310 seemed to be a little faster than production over the past 10 years or so.  I had to move from 4.2 gr to 4.4 to get similar groups and velocities, but then again the guns were rebuilt as well, albeit the guns had and were rebuilt with Kart barrels.  

(2) For light loads of VV 310 use magnum or WLP primers (which are listed as standard and magnum).  You might see more consistent velocities and potentially grouping.  This will also generally eliminate the sometimes reported temperature sensitivity with VV310 using light loads in colder weather. 

(3) Don't get caught up on trying to find a "low velocity" load, especially with Nosler / Zero 185 JHPs.  Faster almost always makes smaller groups with these bullets. And trying for real slow velocities can generate a whole lot of other issues.  And your gun fit / build will come into play as well.  As a matter of fact, that kinda goes for most all loads / bullets for .45 ACP.  Let the gun tell you what it likes in terms of group size / reliability first, then worry about recoil last. 

(4) I currently use 2016 production VV310 at 3.85 gr for 200 gr. LSWC and 4.4 gr for 185 JHP (Zero / Nosler) at 1.20. (I've posted these loads before.  You can substitute a 180 / 185 LSWC for the short line and don't be surprised if the velocities are a little slower than the 200 LSWC rounds due to more case capacity with the lighter bullet

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Post by BE Mike Mon Jun 27, 2022 11:25 am

My Nosler 185 grain JHP slow fire loads clocked at around 828 fps according to my records.
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Post by Wobbley Mon Jun 27, 2022 11:28 am

In actual practice, IN HANDGUN CARTRIDGES, it is my finding that Red Dot and the like are faster than Bullseye.  For example the max charge  by Quickload for 148 WC is 2.9 Red Dot giving 850-900 fps.  2.8 Bullseye is down at 750.
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Post by PhotoEscape Mon Jun 27, 2022 11:53 am

Wobbley wrote:In actual practice, IN HANDGUN CARTRIDGES, it is my finding that Red Dot and the like are faster than Bullseye.  For example the max charge  by Quickload for 148 WC is 2.9 Red Dot giving 850-900 fps.  2.8 Bullseye is down at 750.

That's correct, Ashley!  More recent chart of powder bun rates places Alliant Red Dot as #8, while Alliant Bulls Eye is #13 in the same chart.  Alliant E3 is #5.

However we deviated from the question of OP - he is using N312(!)  In comparison with N310 it is slightly slower, hence would need a little bit more than N310 to achieve same velocity.  However in his testing using 4.2gr of N312 with Federal Magnum primers velocity was inconsistent, but reaching 760 fps.  I think, it was due to very light crimp.  I am using ASYM factory charge as a measuring stick, which is 4.1 gr N310 / 1.205" OAL / 0.470" crimp producing 775 fps.  Thus my suggestion is to keep same 4.2 gr of N312 charge, but tighten crimp and slightly shorten OAL.


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Post by RodJ Mon Jun 27, 2022 1:44 pm

The changes in relative burn rates in these lists is making my head spin. Accurate Powder website shows red dot slower than BE which is slower than WST. Other charts have Red Dot the fastest followed by BE then WST. Looks like the moral remains the same: use current published load data, double check your components, and work up your loads in YOUR (capitalized in a nod to Wobbley) pistol.


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Post by pgg Tue Jun 28, 2022 8:32 pm

I loaded up 25 more today. Went with 4.4 gr of N312 for this test. Weighed every charge to within 0.02 gr on a lab scale just to take the powder measure out of the equation. I screwed the taper crimp die in a bit more to get 0.469" at the case mouth. Still 1.210" OAL.

First 5 shots at 50 yards:

185 gr Zero JHP velocity Target10

Can't complain. I usually don't shoot that well. Next 20 rounds:

185 gr Zero JHP velocity Target11

Shots were mostly on call. Still getting used to the red dot. I usually shoot something around 89 - 93 with my iron sight Beretta so this wasn't a great target, not real happy with it, but I can't say it's a completely outrageous result for me.

Chrono data:
1st target (5 shots): avg 736 fps, SD 22.4, ES 62
2nd target (20 shots): avg 738 fps, SD 28.9, ES 131 ... had one at 690 fps and one at 821 fps.
Still seems more inconsistent than I'd expect.

4.4 gr also shot pretty softly. I think next I'll try some at 4.6 gr with the 0.469" crimp.

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Post by BE Mike Wed Jun 29, 2022 8:10 am

With JHP bullets in .45 ACP, I always used .470" taper crimp.
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Post by inthebeech Fri Jul 01, 2022 5:32 am

Empirical data would suggest your spread is perfectly normal. Most measures can’t throw a smaller spread than plus/minus .15 grains over ten rounds. The total variation of .3 is very consistent with 50-70 f/s spread.  When you’re working up loads and change the charge by this much, don’t you get about this much change in velocity?
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Post by tovaert Fri Jul 01, 2022 11:58 am

My MV’s and yours are almost identical. I also use the analytical balance and still get ES values like yours (but low SD’s) with the Zero 185. That’s a sweet spot for my .45 (Colt NM ‘61 vintage). I’m using Starline, 1.200”, WLP, 4.0 e^3, .469. This powder is a bit faster but it’s still a comfortable round to shoot. I gave up trying to get something accurate under 700 fps MV.

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Post by bigpaw Tue Oct 04, 2022 8:58 pm

Thanks guys for all of the data here.  Is this for the code r185 or r187 zero jhp’s?  Both are 185 jhp’s

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