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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm looking for some opinions. I'm getting ready to start reloading 45 ACP, and the time has come to order powder. I'm leaning towards Unique as it's relatively fast burning, and is fairly voluminous. I'm going to be using Berry 185 gr. HBRN projectiles which have a hollow base. They seat as deep as a regular 230 gr round but with the hollow base there's a bit more case capacity. I want to use a 'big' powder to reduce the chance of double charging, as well as to fill the case as completely as possible. My question is this - I can't find any info that tells me what type of powder it is (ball, flake, or stick) and I'm not sure how well it will drop from my Lee Auto Disk powder measure. Anyone run Unique through one of these contraptions?

I've also got a static question - as in static building up in the powder measure causing powder to stick to the sides and reducing the amount of the charge. Anyone had issues with this, and if so, what's a good fix? I've heard that giving the unit a good rub down with a graphite pencil will keep it from doing it. Is that true, or even needed?
 

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I have good results using Unique through all my measures including the Lee disk. Some others do not. I use Unique mostly in medium revolver loads.
I've mostly switched to WST in autoloaders since it is extremely clean burning and meters really well.

As for static with plastic, wipe things down good with anti-static drier sheets, some people recommend used ones. You probably will encounter slight static cling no matter what but it can be kept to an acceptable level.

I just ordered some of the Berry's 230gr HBRN in .45 cal and look forward to testing them. I mostly shoot their 200gr FP.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I probably should have mentioned that I added the adjustable measure to my auto disk - don't know if that makes a difference related to powder sticking or not. And thanks for the dryer sheet tip.

I don't know how well the Berry's bullets will work, but I was very impressed with their shipping. I ordered 500 bullets so as to get the free shipping, and they processed the order very promptly. I really like the idea of a bullet with the same profile as a 230 gr but with 185 gr weight. Should give the casing plenty of 'grab' on the bullet so as to prevent push back, as well as allowing for much higher velocity, lower recoil, and positive feeding. Now if I can just quit opening the boxes and playing with them. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So what kind of powder is Unique - ball, flake, or stick?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the info. I thought about Bullseye too, but it doesn't take up as much volume as Unique so it won't fill a case as fully, and the potential for a double charge going unnoticed is greater. It's faster burning than Unique, though, so maybe it would work better in my PT145. Back in the day I had a friend who used to reload for me, and he used Bullseye in 45 acp cartridges. What I always remember about it was that it was pretty dirty. He used to reload .357's for me with Unique, and it was a bit cleaner. I was checking their website earlier today, and they were advertising a change in the powder that's supposed to make it even cleaner. I'll reserve judgement on that 'till I see how dirty my 45's get. :D

And speaking of burn rates, I recently found this table - Powder burn rates
 

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i have been using Bullseye in my 45 loads. Shoots good and loads are accurate. As far as double loads go, if you are single stage loading, you should visually double check your cases before you seat the bullets. I look in the tray of cases that have powder in them just to be sure I didn't double charge one.
 

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I probably should have mentioned that I added the adjustable measure to my auto disk - don't know if that makes a difference related to powder sticking or not.
I have the adjustable charge bar and do not like it. It is not as consistent for me for some reason. I fooled with it when I first got it but never was satisfied so it is somewhere in the cabinet gathering dust.

And thanks for the dryer sheet tip.
No charge.
 

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I personally have moved to accurate #5 for loading my 45 acp target rounds (200 grain Raniers round nose) no chance of double charge (course I visually check all loads twice before putting that little lead thinky in the case.)
its a bit slower than Unique but very clean for me, you may get better performance out of your short barrled 45's with the unique.
I find unique to flow good through my auto measure from lee, and its a very versatile powder as well, its pretty darned clean for me as i have a couple three stainless 1911's an they don''t come back from the range bad at all.
MY Beretta PX4 SC (3 inch barrel) just would not work on the accurate #5 so went to unique and all is well with it , so burn rates do matter!
I think you will find as you use the lee powder measure more it gets better as the graphite thats in the powder makes it smoother and easier to drop better measurements.- at least mine did.
Not trying to change you selection of projectiles but I priced Berrys, ordering from their factory and then Raniers from Midway and the Raniers was actually cheaper, also berrys from Powder valley .com is cheaper than berrys website.
It seems while berrys doesn't charge a delivery fee they have the projectiles marked up high enough to cover the shipping charge!
if you can catch Raniers on sale at Midway its a fair amount cheaper and if you are already ordering from them then additional weight isn't that much more to add to your order, Just a FYI.
hope this helps you some buddy!
 

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Unique is a round flake, slightly larger than Bullseye. I have no difficulty using it in my LEE Autodisk, with the adjustable charge bar or the disks - particularly at 45 ACP charge volumes. Very accurate and reliable.

Bullseye is a better choice powder for the slower, lighter target loads. Though if you are leaning toward faster and bigger bullets, Unique would be a better choice.

Not sure what the formula is for the lighter bullets, but to equal the factory loading of hardball 230 gr with a lead 230RN, 6.4 grains Unique does it. @850 fps.

Flash
 
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Discussion Starter #12
The lee manual shows 8 grains of unique for a 185 gr jacketed bullet, but it only shows 6 for 180 grain lead. The bullets I've got are plated, so I'm thinkin they're probably somewhere in between. They've also got a hollow base and a profile that's the same as a 230 gr fmj, so there should be quite a bit engaging the rifling too. Probably best to start at 6 and go from there, wouldn't you think?
 

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"IF" I remember corectly both ranier and berry says to use lead data or middle loads for jacketed projectiles of the same weight and profile as starting loads for their projectiles, as always check with the manufacture but I do believe this is what they say.
the plated projectile isn't going to have as much bite in the grooves as the lead rounds, especially soft lead.
I am running my 200 grainers at about 970 FPS according to the book figures (accurate #5) and no leading at all in my 45's, thats of course a plated round nose.
I would assume that berrys formula is similair to raniers as both are swaged projectiles i believe.
of course speed isn't my concern, function is and of course accuracy but i am sure the gun and bullets are more accurate than I am.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
"IF" I remember corectly both ranier and berry says to use lead data or middle loads for jacketed projectiles of the same weight and profile as starting loads for their projectiles, as always check with the manufacture but I do believe this is what they say.
I checked Berry's site and it states "When loading plated bullets we have found best results using low- to mid-range jacketed data in the load manual. You must use data for a bullet that has the same weight and profile as the one you are loading. Do not exceed mid-range loads. Do not use magnum loads." That being the case I have a bit of a dilemma as the profile is the same as a 230 grain fmj, but the mass of 185 grains. The lee manual shows a starting load for 230 gr lead at 5 grains, 230 gr fmj's at 6 grains, and the starting load for 180 gr lead at 6, and 185 gr jacketed rounds at 8 grains. 8 just seems awful stiff to me, so I'm still thinkin' start at 6 grains and work up from there. Again the numbers are for Unique.
 

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well of course the reason for not using magnum loads is seperation of the thin jacketing from the core as speed is increased, you don't want a piece of that plating material left in the barrel.
Lyman lists the loads for the 185 grain jacketed projectile as starting load Unique-4.8 grains- 630 FPS- CUP 7,800
Max load at Unique-7.8 grains- 985 FPS- cup17,800, this is for a hollow point jacketed round with the same basic profile as the round nose 230 grain and out of a 5 inch barrel.
I would think that a start load of 6 grains should be fine.
what is the listed OAL for your round?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
It shows the same minimum overall length as 1.190 for both the lead and jacketed 230 gr. rounds. It shows minimum overall length as 1.275 for a 185 gr jacketed bullet but it's got a completely different profile as compared to the HBRN's. I just checked a plated federal 230 gr. fmj and it measures 1.265. I would think that would be a good length with these HBRN's, unless I'm missing something.
 

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Try Universal Clays, over Unique. It will give you all the advantages of Unique but with a cleaner burning and lower flash powder.

I would work off of the 185 grain lead bullet profile, not the 230 FMJ profile, as you will be pushing for the most accurate load somewhere in the mid-range.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
What type of powder is Universal Clays? It's almost identical to Unique in terms of burn rate but it's more compact, and I really want to fill the case as full as possible. The other thing I want to make sure is that it meters well from my powder measure, and so far all the feedback seems to be that Unique works well in the lee auto disk. The lee reloading manual cautions against the use of flake powders in the auto disk, but evidently Unique's flakes are big enough to work well.
 

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I agree with mr Wolf about using the 185 grain data as reference, the 230 is just a totally different animal being that much heavier.
thats exactly what i did with my 200 grain round nose, i used the data for the 200 grain FMJ and began in the middle load for it, course the profile is the same.
The Lyman load that i gave lists the OAL at 1.175 but i didn't give that to you cause its a hollow point projectile , the round nose will be longer and so the 1.190 to possibly 1.210 would be my guess at a good length.
of course now this is just my suggestions as you know its your responsibility about taking this advice.
let us know how it goes.
Just curious if you are reading the length reccomendations correctly?
the 1.275 is the maximum length of any 45 acp round if i am not wrong?
are you sure that is the reccoemnded minimum OAL length for that loading?
could be but thats pretty long unless you got a Total Metal Jacket 230 grain with a thick jacket material usually?
anyway, just wanted to point that out.
 

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The other thing I want to make sure is that it meters well from my powder measure, and so far all the feedback seems to be that Unique works well in the lee auto disk. The lee reloading manual cautions against the use of flake powders in the auto disk, but evidently Unique's flakes are big enough to work well.
If you ever get a chance to take a look at say, Red Dot, Blue Dot, Green dot powders, which are traditional Flake powders you will see a noticeable diference in the shape of those and Unique.
ball and or spherical powders flow better than likely any of the others due to the shape and size of them.
 
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