SWC 45ACP load isn't (cutting)


January 6, 2003, 06:00 PM
Just tried a new load using lead SWC bullets in my 45. It shot well, accurate and clean, but the targets were getting torn, not the nice clean holes punched through them that I expect to see.

I could see the bullet was striking square, not tumbling.

Its a midrange load: 200gr SWC Oregon Trail Laser-Cast, 4.4gr WST, WLP, 1.250 COL, .469 crimp.

Its not the paper, my other ball loads punched normal looking holes in the same targets.

Too fast? Too slow? Any other thoughts?


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Mal H
January 6, 2003, 06:30 PM
I don't have a good answer for you Larry. I've used those same bullets and the holes look like you used a large paper punch to make them - very clean.

According to the L-C Reloading Manual, your load should be hitting around 880 fps, give or take a little depending on barrel length. So it shouldn't be velocity that is the problem. One thing to consider is the target backing. Are your targets backed up by cardboard or are they paper hanging free?

January 6, 2003, 07:50 PM
I have noticed when I shoot 200 g SWC and don't have a good backing, the holes are not nice and round; like a paper puncher. When the target is against a wood surface or a good piece of sturdy cardboard, the holes are nice and clean.

January 6, 2003, 08:06 PM
The targets are a standard Alco B-8 hanging freely, no backing. I haven't had this happen so severely (2+" tearout along several sides of POI) with a SWC so was thinking I may be driving the bullets at an off-velocity.

I think I'll play with it a bit more to see if changing the velocity lets me cut nice clean holes without a backing.


January 6, 2003, 09:03 PM
I am thinking that the target does not have a strong backing, so when the bullet hits, the paper moves and it tears the target. This has happened to me on several occasions. As long as I keep my targets firmly attached to the backstop and the paper is taught, I get nice, clean, round holes.

January 7, 2003, 07:11 AM
is a real powder puff: Bullseye 3.4 to 3.8 grains, does something like 600 fps, but cuts clean every time, so I doubt it's the velocity. But some target papers are definitely better than others.

January 9, 2003, 12:01 AM
I used to get the same problem when I was hanging my targets on a wire (using cloth pins which are more fun targets anyway). I switched to putting targets on a piece of plywood with a staple gun and the problem disappeared.

January 9, 2003, 12:36 AM
This falls into the category of truly stupid things.

I went to the range today and those same loads cut nice clean holes in the same targets. However, last night, I did not forget to take my stash of targets out of my car like I did the time before. I'm guessing condensation from the over night stay in my car caused the paper to get funky.

Onward to the more important issues. :)

thanks all!

January 9, 2003, 08:45 AM
Ah well, look at it this way... the answer is now in the archives for the next person :)

Paul "Fitz" Jones
January 16, 2003, 01:37 PM
I read about 50 lists and am co-moderator here and have my own list and I really enjoyed this thread. Here was a problem that no other shooter had and I was prepared to write a post of how I had California Saeco make the traditional design H&G 068 bullet for me and I put a sharper edge on the nose to punch paper better and the solution to the problem had me laughing so hard I about fell out of my computer recliner chair.

This thread takes the cake for humor.

Thanks for making my day.

January 16, 2003, 04:15 PM
So much for this thread riding quietly off into the sunset...<hangs head in shame>.


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