HS6 38 special loads.

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by gunslinger69, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. gunslinger69

    gunslinger69 New Member

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    Just wanted to get some opinions on why my 38 special loads seem to be erratic in power level. Some seem like bunny farts and some seem like +p loads which is where I figured they'd be when I loaded them. My loads are made up of mixed brass, CCI small pistol standard primers and 7.0 grains of HS6 under a remington 125 grain SJHP. As I said these were loaded to +P levels using Hodgdon reloading data.
  2. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    Did you hand weigh the charges or throw them with a measure?
  3. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    I dont think the mixed commercial brass is the issue. i use mixed brass all the time and have no problems
  4. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    Measure a few cases; i think your problem lies in a consistent crimp. All my loads with hs6 have needed a heavy consistent crimp in order to burn properly . I got a lot of unburned powder while working up my loads with hs6. make sure your case lengths are within a few thousands and your crimp is on the heavy side.
  5. American Leader

    American Leader Well-Known Member

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    I use HS-6 and LEE factory crimp die and have NO problems. As worm says, consistent crimp, consistent powder charge and consistent OAL equals consistent pressure.
  6. korny351

    korny351 New Member

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    I've read on several forums where some users consider HS-6 to be "position sensitive". Giving differing performance depending on where in the case it has settled. But I wouldn't expect as great a spread as you describe. I'd be looking at possible erratic powder charge and a solid crimp as mentioned above.
  7. gunslinger69

    gunslinger69 New Member

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    Thanks for the feedback I weighed on a scale about every 10th to 15th charge, and it looked good. My thaughts had initially been primer related but crimp had never been discussed anywhere I've looked. I am also using a Lee factory crimp die, my question would be is there any way to determine the strength or quality of my crimp?
  8. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Hopefully you are roll crimping the 38 specials as opposed to tapper crimping, and if so just look at the crimp making sure the lip of the case is rolled into the cannelure of the bullet. If there is no cannelure on the bullet the crimp sould just barely start to deform the bullet to a point that if you pulled the bullet you could both see and feel a ring around the bullet.

    Ron
  9. gunslinger69

    gunslinger69 New Member

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    Muddober, There is a cannelure and my crimp does utilize it. I'm not sure if I'm getting a "roll" crimp even though the Lee crimp die states you can get both effects from the same die I don't seem to get a different style when I adjust, just more or less crimp.
  10. Orin

    Orin Member

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    I suggest that the HS6 may not be the best powder unless your gun has a long barrel. I prefer Unique. However, I agree that yer measuring & crimp may be the probs. First, try weighing every load & save the powder drop for later experimentation. No matter the tool used, beam scale or digital, ensure that there's no air movement! The smallest flow will cause a lot of variance. The crimp's fairly EZ... Enuff to go into the cannelure but not enuff to deform the brass edge or peel metal.
  11. Orin

    Orin Member

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    Oops, had to leave off before finishing.
    Since the crimp is dependant upon case length & yer uzin various brass it would be wise to measure/trim all to the same length. Otherwise yer crimps will vary. I prefer segregating brass & steel.
    The Lee dies are good. Set the bullet depth with no crimp. Back off the bullet seater so it can't touch the bullet. Slowly lower the die till the crimp's right on. Then lower the seater with the handle all the way down (hold it!) till the seater won't screw down further using fingers only. Be sure the die's locked firmly down.
    Start with mid-pressure loads to test. Stay away from very light or heavy loads till you know you've got it right. Take yer time - no hurry.
  12. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    I personally would switch to Titegroup. HS6 is a tad slow for the .38 spec IMO.
  13. gunslinger69

    gunslinger69 New Member

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    Thanks for the feedback guys. I'm thinking the powder switch is the route I'll take, titegroup does seem like a strong contender.
  14. bfoosh006

    bfoosh006 New Member

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    You might try a Magnum primer, and re-work your load.
  15. oldgunfan

    oldgunfan Member

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    HS-6 doesn't work well at low pressures, It's one of a few powders that you need to be up around maybe 20,000psi to burn clean it also likes magnum primers. just as an example if you use HS-6 for 45acp's you need to be up to max like with 200grn JHP you need to be in the 9.3-9.5grn range for it to work well. hope that helps.
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