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I finally made the jump to a 45 now a couple of questions about what size bullets I should consider buying molds for I have already bought a lee 230 grain TC I figure should get me started
I also bought a box of Blazer 230 Grain RN but the primers look to be small pistol primers if I decide to reload them what primer would I use the guy at the GS didn't charge a transfer fee so I felt like I needed to at least buy some bullets luckily for me tht was his last box. I plan on buying some different loads at Wal-Mart maybe some WWB and whatever I can find in smaller grain not the real light stuff I've seen for self defense.
Ive also noticed there's a difference between pouring for a 9mm 120 grain verses the 45 230 grain in an aluminum Mold
Any Pointers would be appreciated Thanks Jeff
 
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Personally I like 200 grain bullets because my smaller 1911's and my full sized ones eat that like candy. Sometimes you have issues with 230 gr. bullets in the smaller platforms.

185 grain would work good too, and I've had really good accuracy with that weight bullet.
 

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I don't have tons of experience with it myself, but so far from what I have loaded, pretty much everything seems to work. The 230 gr is a good place to start. I've loaded 230 gr LRN with W231, WST, TiteWAD, and Universal. All of them shot pretty well but I favored the W231. At the moment I'm working through a box of (500) 185 gr coated LSWC from SNS (who seem to have discontinued this bullet). I've tried W231 and WST, both shot well, and next up is Universal. The 185's with W231 seem to be the most accurate thing so far, but it's not like any of them were bad.

Much like the .38 Special, regardless of what you throw at it, it seems to shoot pretty well. I'll probably stick to 185's for target shooting. They're cheaper. But the 230 gr LRN is a good all-around bullet. All my commercial cast bullets have come sized .452.
 

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Very user friendly caliber. Compatible with most pistol powders and bullet weights. I like Tite-Group, Accurate #5 and #7, True Blue and Red Dot. I like 230 grain bullet weight for all around use. Most like the 200 gr. H & G style SWC for target use. Hard to go wrong with this caliber. Go to the Los Angeles Silhouette Club site and download the book Loading the 45 ACP by Glen Fryxell. It will give you a complete tutorial on this caliber.
 
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Regular Small Pistol Primers work just fine in the .45acp Brass with small primers.
 

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I pretty much stick to 230 grain and use plated as I don't cast...yet. I have used 185 grain (IIRC) SWC which fed just fine and put a really nice 1/2" cutout hole in the targets....like they were drilled through wood! :cool: I have never loaded the SP cases that I've accumulated, sticking to the LP as they are more common. I use primarily HP38/W231 and have used Universal and the CSB shotgun powder from Spain when the powder drought struck. It's a fun round to load and hand loading makes a lot of sense due to the higher cost of factory ammo. Keep us informed how it works for you!
 
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Heck , I think I got about 12-14 1911's and a few other designs in 45acp. I have loaded and shot everything from them, 160 grain (all copper) 175, 185, 200, 230 grin, SWC, flat point, round nose, hollow point.
I kind of settled on the target weight of 200 grain plated SWC normally.
primers should be any small pistol primer, I can't think of any powder in a 45 acp that would require a magnum primer?
of course standard 45 cases will be large primers.
 
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I have loaded my 45acp rounds with 6.5 grains of unique behind a 220 to 230 grain round nose bullet since the early 70s.
Just an observation, you can store your reloads in lots of 1,000 in 50 caliber ammo cans but it is a heavy SOB to pickup afterwords.

I know that they are SOBs because that is what I say when I try to pick up one.
 

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The technical answer would be to slug the bore and match diameters accordingly but I usually use .451" if they are jacketed and .452" if they are cast. Modern .45 barrels are usually close enough to the standard that it works out pretty well doing it that way.

The exception is revolvers with tight throats on the chambers (Yeah, I'm talking about you, Ruger).

NOTHING in the reloading process is gonna help fix having to shove a .45-something" bullet through a .447" throat on the way to a forcing cone of a barrel that measures .4515". Under those circumstances, anything you try to do with the ammunition is gonna be a wasted effort as soon as you drop the hammer on the primer.

Oh, you mean the bullet weight!

Silly me.

What weight does the gun shoot best?

Use that one.

Trying to make a gun shoot well with the ammo you want it to shoot is futile. Some guns shoot really well with only one weight that's being pushed at a certain velocity range. Others will shoot at least decently with near 'bout anything you feed it. It just depends on what the gun works best with.

Check with the independent bullet manufacturers. Some will sell you a sample pack of 20, 50 or so bullets for a reasonable price. If you can find some that do it, you can try a few different bullet weights to see what the gun likes- or at least weed out what it doesn't.
 

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The technical answer would be to slug the bore and match diameters accordingly but I usually use .451" if they are jacketed and .452" if they are cast. Modern .45 barrels are usually close enough to the standard that it works out pretty well doing it that way.

The exception is revolvers with tight throats on the chambers (Yeah, I'm talking about you, Ruger).

NOTHING in the reloading process is gonna help fix having to shove a .45-something" bullet through a .447" throat on the way to a forcing cone of a barrel that measures .4515". Under those circumstances, anything you try to do with the ammunition is gonna be a wasted effort as soon as you drop the hammer on the primer.

Oh, you mean the bullet weight!

Silly me.

What weight does the gun shoot best?

Use that one.

Trying to make a gun shoot well with the ammo you want it to shoot is futile. Some guns shoot really well with only one weight that's being pushed at a certain velocity range. Others will shoot at least decently with near 'bout anything you feed it. It just depends on what the gun works best with.

Check with the independent bullet manufacturers. Some will sell you a sample pack of 20, 50 or so bullets for a reasonable price. If you can find some that do it, you can try a few different bullet weights to see what the gun likes- or at least weed out what it doesn't.
Thinking about that we should set up a bullet exchange like the brass exchange that's going on. Your post could read something like: I want to try a cast 185 gr. Semi wadcutter or I'd like to try some 115 gr. Berry's plated round nose. I think there are many people that would ship you 10-20 bullets so you wouldn't have to buy a hundred. TheOldRedneck kindly gave me about 30 various cast bullets for my .454. I know that I usually have some goofy quantities left over especially with cast bullets. I would be willing to help someone if possible.
 

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I'm pretty sure 45 ACP will load bullet weights from around 160 gr to 235 gr or so. It also seems that every pistol powder out there has a load made up for 45 ACP. What that means for you is you have a plethora of differing combinations of powders and bullets to work with. Each firearm has it's sweet spot for the ammo it likes. Just find the ones that work best for your firearms and stick with those. It's also VERY handy to keep a notebook or journal of what loads didn't work the way you wanted them to along with a WHY you didn't like them. Some years down the road you may find a bullet mold or a screaming deal on a particular bullet and then you check your notes to find your guns didn't like them at all. No sense wasting money on those deals if they dont work for you.
 
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I've several .45 ACP pistols, most are 1911's, and use the H&G #68 SWC in 200 grains. My OSS and Tanfoglio with ramped barrels don't seem to care what I use. I've even used this bullet in my .45 Colt loads. My Marlin lever gun even likes it. It's probably the most used outside of the 200 grain round nose flat tip used in cowboy action shooting.

Maloy
 

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I have been shooting the Lee 200 grain tumble lube SWC for about 30 years. It's an accurate bullet, needs to be cast of good hard alloy. It performs well in my Ruger KP90 and my Howell conversion cylinder for my '58 Remmy. It is an accurate bullet. Target on the right is shot with the 200 grain Lee bullet at 25 yards through the Ruger. The one on the left was shot with 200 grain Speer flying astrays. They didn't feed in my 1911, but I carry them in my Ruger. Not made anymore, so I have several boxes left I'm real protective of. :D The Lee 200 SWC also performed well in my AMT Hardballer, a 1911 that was real picky. It feeds well because its rounded off the flat point like a round nose. That Ruger feeds anything, but the 1911 was picky as heck.

 

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I have been shooting the Lee 200 grain tumble lube SWC for about 30 years. It's an accurate bullet, needs to be cast of good hard alloy. It performs well in my Ruger KP90 and my Howell conversion cylinder for my '58 Remmy. It is an accurate bullet. Target on the right is shot with the 200 grain Lee bullet at 25 yards through the Ruger. The one on the left was shot with 200 grain Speer flying astrays. They didn't feed in my 1911, but I carry them in my Ruger. Not made anymore, so I have several boxes left I'm real protective of. :D The Lee 200 SWC also performed well in my AMT Hardballer, a 1911 that was real picky. It feeds well because its rounded off the flat point like a round nose. That Ruger feeds anything, but the 1911 was picky as heck.
I loved the "Flying Ashtray"...!!!
 

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My Ruger loves the flying ashtray, too. I'll not run out anytime soon as I have a few full boxes and don't shoot 'em anymore for targets.

They sure were a good bullet for testing .45's, too. If it'd feed THAT, it'd feed anything. :D
 

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I finally made the jump to a 45 now a couple of questions about what size bullets I should consider buying molds for I have already bought a lee 230 grain TC I figure should get me started
I also bought a box of Blazer 230 Grain RN but the primers look to be small pistol primers if I decide to reload them what primer would I use the guy at the GS didn't charge a transfer fee so I felt like I needed to at least buy some bullets luckily for me tht was his last box. I plan on buying some different loads at Wal-Mart maybe some WWB and whatever I can find in smaller grain not the real light stuff I've seen for self defense.
Ive also noticed there's a difference between pouring for a 9mm 120 grain verses the 45 230 grain in an aluminum Mold
Any Pointers would be appreciated Thanks Jeff
I've been casting and reloading for the 45 ACP for a little over a year. I started out with the Lee 200 gr. SWC 2 cavity mold as well as an NOE 230 gr. RNFP that will also cast HP's an cup point bullets,the weight only changes about 20 grs. between the three bullet types. I love both bullet and my Hi-Point 45 ACP carbine feeds and shoots them all like a laser using 6.9 grs. of Power Pistol. I cast them from 50/50 WW's/Pure Lead plus a little Tin and powder coat them and size to .452" with a Lee push through sizer.

For brass I use both the LP and SP primed cases. I segregate the cases and only take one or the other when I shoot so I don't get it all mixed up,I haven't been able to tell any differ in performance between one or the other primed cases and I use Winchester,CCI and Federal primer.

As far as casting the larger bullets just preheat you mold well before the first cast I like to use a single burner hot plate and I like to keep the spout on the bottom pour pot about 1" off the sprue plate an run the pot temp just a few degree higher. As to SD ammo my personal choice is this when they have it in stock in the 50 rd. box for around $26 1000 round case- 45 Auto Federal HST 230gr HP hollow point LE ammo P45HST2

200 gr. SWC load
 

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I loved the "Flying Ashtray"...!!!
Yes I remember them well.
The Federal Classic Old School hollow point is very close to that projectile.
My ATI defender size loves these things.
I always try to keep a few boxes laying around to test new 45's with them, If they feed these they pretty much feed most anything.
they are also very reasonable priced for a factory hollow point if you can find them.
 

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As an owner and operator of several .45 ACP chambered Pistols, I've loaded all of the various bullet weights and have used many different powders to propel those bullets. My favorite Bullet weight in this caliber is 200 grains. My most favored powder in this caliber is Alliant Red Dot, with Alliant Green Dot, WST, and Vihtavouri N320 coming up behind, in that order. Currently, I'm using Berry's Plated Flat Points, Alliant Red Dot, and Winchester Large Pistol Primers. My Favorite Cast Bullet for the .45 ACP comes from the Lyman #452460 mold, which is a 200 grain LSWC.


Collection of .45 ACP Caliber Pistols L - R
Taurus 24/7 OSS
1992 EAA Witness
2005 EAA Witness
1917 1911 Custom
Charles Daly 1911 Elite Field Service
 
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