.45 ACP load questions

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by Guest, Feb 24, 2003.

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    teddydogg
    Member
    Posts: 1
    (9/6/02 11:14:41 am)
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    I've been reloading for quite some time, but am pretty new to loading .45 ACP. I took two loads with me to the range the other day and had some interesting results.

    Both were loaded using Lee dies, mixed brass and CCI LP primers. Load #1 is a 230 gr Montana Gold FMJ with 4.9 gr Bullseye. Load #2 is a 200 gr Lead RNFP (same as I use in .45 Colt "cowboy" loads) with 4.8 gr Bullseye.

    Both loads were good shooters in the informal shooting I was doing (30 feet, indoor range, offhand). My first interesting item is that these loads would not chamber in my Essex-framed "parts gun" (all GI parts on the Essex frame). They appear to be oversize. The last batch I loaded worked fine in this gun, as I recall. I could get them to chamber with some thumb pressure to the back of the slide. Some factory PMP ball also chambered fine. I haven't measured the loaded rounds yet, but it's kinda interesting. Could my chamber have been that dirty or the dies be that out of spec? These loads had no trouble chambering in my Ballester Molina, though, and gave good accuracy.

    Question #2: the load with the 230 gr FMJ was clean and without noticable smoke or unburned powder. However, the lighter load with the 200 gr lead bullet was very smokey and left quite a bit of unburned powder on my right forearm. Is this difference due to the lead bullet or the lower pressure of the load? I really don't like eating that much smoke on an indoor range, so I think I should be looking for a different light lead load. Or is any lead load going to give me the extra smoke?

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Rob

    Crpdeth
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    Posts: 85
    (9/6/02 4:36:37 pm)
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    Rob I'll try to answer your questions as best I can...I used to have a little trouble with my .45s chambering fully untill I started trimming and chamfering my cases...What happened was, I crimp pretty hard, not too hard, but probabally more than most, So... the bullets that I sat in cases just a tad longer than the others would buldge slightly, just enough to cause chambering problems...My suggestion would be to try not to crimp as hard, or if you are like me and enjoy the "safe feeling" of a strong crimp, try case trimming.

    As far as the smoke, I've found that bullseye is just smokey period...I've been told from shooting buddies that I look like I'm on fire from the back. LOL

    the real fredneck
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 1153
    (9/9/02 8:35:51 am)
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    a lot of the extra smoke is caused by the bullet lube on the lead slugs

    Crpdeth
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 102
    (9/9/02 6:36:45 pm)
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    Thanks fred...You taught me something.
    I had assumed it was the powder.

    Bompa
    Member
    Posts: 41
    (9/9/02 10:07:10 pm)
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    A heavy crimp on a auto pistol case will cause more problems
    than it can ever solve.. The taper crimp should only remove
    the bell that you did to the case so a bullet can be seated..
    The best thing to do is seat and then crimp,separate operations..The bullet tension created by your sizing die should hold the bullet as tight as necessary..

    teddydogg
    Member
    Posts: 2
    (9/10/02 3:16:59 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Thanks...I hadn't thought about the lube
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    and I've been shooting thousands of cowboy .45 Colt loads. They always smoke, but I just attributed this to the Green Dot powder. This .45 ACP trial with the same powder behind both a lead and an FMJ load brought this to my attention. Why was the same powder causing so much smoke with the lead and not the FMJ?

    I guess smoked lube in my lungs is better than vaporized lead! That was my big concern. I think I'll try to stick with FMJ or at least plated bullets in in the ACP.

    Rob

    Crpdeth
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 104
    (9/10/02 4:56:03 pm)
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    Boompa, I try not to crimp "too hard" as I say, but especially on my bullets that will be used for home protection I crimp pretty good because I remove these bullets from the mag and barrel often, in order to replace them with my hunting rounds, and take the weapon out to the land, then back home. I would certainally hate to cause setback by playing with these rounds so often.


    BTW: Welcome aboard Rob, hope you stick around awhile.

    rayra
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 356
    (9/11/02 12:01:06 am)
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    crpdeth, how 'bout using .45 bullets with a cannelure, you'll get all the setback prevention you could want, with very little crimp.
    ?


    Crpdeth
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 106
    (9/11/02 4:29:04 pm)
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    Rayra:
    Dude, where do I find these? I found some on E-bay once, but lost the auction to another bidder...I usually shop through National Bullet Co, and I dont think they carry them....At least I havent seen them.

    Well I'm wrong as usual...I double checked National before I even finished this post and they have 'em...I always wondered what "swaged" meant
    Anyway I ordered a sample pack of "Star brand SWAGED .45 Caliber 230gr. RN" I bet I'll love 'em.

    Thanks!

    Smoky14
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 269
    (9/12/02 10:03:17 am)
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    Donny: swaged is the way the bullet is formed ie, swaged vs cast. They are usually softer than cast and cheaper to make.
    I had a problem with them leading real bad. Took the better part of a day to clean the gun; dental tools etc.

    I hope that helps.

    PS: Too loose a crimp can cause the overall length to change on the cartridges in the mag. NOT a good thing as pressures can rise to say nothing of erratic shot placement.

    Smoky the leary

    inplanotx
    Member
    Posts: 45
    (9/12/02 3:18:15 pm)
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    Many years ago I was taught that roll crimping any pistol cartridge that headspaces on the case mouth was a big no-no. It causes two main problems. The first is that an over crimp will cause the case to bulge and cause a failure to feed. The second is that the cartrige may slip past the chamber and cause a misfire by being too far from the firing pin. I have always used a taper crimp die for this job. I set the die to produce a case mouth dimension of .469 inches and have never had another feed problem.

    I learned the biggest lesson when I had reloaded for my .30 carbine ruger blackhawk. I loaded up 500 rounds using military brass and roll crimped a 110 gr. round nose bullet. When I went to the desert to shoot them, every one sat too far in the chamber and could not be hit with the firing pin. I ended up pulling all the bullets and saving the powder, but the rest was garbage.

    A good way of testing your loads before disaster strikes at the range is to disassemble the pistol, remove the barrel and start dropping in the rounds one by one. If they sit flush with the hood of the barrel, they are fine. Hope this helps.

    And as Asood Myoob use to say, NEVER use reloads for self defense! I hope I spelled his name right.
    I am not a native Texan, but I got here as fast as I could!

    Crpdeth
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 109
    (9/12/02 4:14:56 pm)
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    Smoky...Okay, thanks for the lesson, you know... the website didn't mention anything about the cannelure grove on said bullets (just showed a picture), thats why I assumed that was what "swaged" ment...(all their swaged .45's had the groove) maybe I can find some cannelure grooved FMJ's.


    Quote:
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    PS: Too loose a crimp can cause the overall length to change on the cartridges in the mag. NOT a good thing as pressures can rise to say nothing of erratic shot placement.

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    This is what I'm afraid of.

    Smoky14
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 271
    (9/12/02 4:27:49 pm)
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    Donny: I carefully measured the OL of a mag full if cartridges and then fired all but the last 2. I removed them and again measured the OL. I fugured my crimp was good when no change took place.

    Smoky

    Crpdeth
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 110
    (9/12/02 6:51:23 pm)
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    That sounds good...I've been known to do the "thumb test" a time or two...I've never had one to break down on my yet, although the OL would be reduced somewhat.

    As far as the swaged bullets go...sounds like they would be good for shooting steel targets, seems like they wouldn't break the target down, near as fast as the FMJ's.

    1badassmagnum
    Member
    Posts: 12
    (12/18/02 11:30:08 pm)
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    once you set your dies,the rounds should come out uniform.you may have a few rounds shorter or longer(the first cases used for setting up the dies),but once these are compaered to factory rounds,and they chamber correctly,you just start cranking them out.
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