Light Load DETONATIONS...?


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BusMaster007
February 6, 2005, 02:00 AM
Someone said to ask HERE, so here's the link to the thread where the discussion is:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?p=1516917#post1516917

Basically, we're wondering if a light load can blow up.

Maybe someone who frequents the Reloading Section remembers the magazine articles I refer to and can comment on that.

Thanks.

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Black Snowman
February 6, 2005, 02:12 AM
The subject has come up and as I recall no one could find any proof that an extremely light load alone has created a detonation. Normally the danger of very light loads are inconsistant iginition resulting in a stuck bullet from a "squib" that creates an obstruction for the next round.

pbhome71
February 6, 2005, 04:24 AM
Here something to think about... Second peak pressure from light load. I got this from RSI. They, actually he, designed, and manufactures pressure guage for handloader. If you call Jim up, he will keep on talking. :) He is a very nice guy.
http://www.shootingsoftware.com/images/sampletracebump.gif

Here is an example of a scary light bullet load recommended in several load manuals taken from a .223 bolt action rifle. Note the secondary pressure spike just as the bullet exits the muzzle and how the pressure traces do not overlay nicely with each successive shot.

This is characteristic of "finicky" bad loads and is probably caused by a pressure shock wave and/or secondary ignition because the powder burn rate is too slow. The exact cause of the secondary pressure spike may never be determined but it is real. Altering the bullet seating depth, powder charge and even adding a 35 lb. sand bag to the barrel did not eliminate or significantly alter the spike.


If I remember correctly. As the powder burnt, the initial pressure drove the bullet forward. As the power burnt more the expanding gas caught up with the travelling bullet and causes secondary spike. However, as he said, "the real reason may never be determined..."

I have just ordered the Pressuretrace and have not have time to play with it, yet.

pbhome71
February 6, 2005, 04:38 AM
Here's more discussion... It may be product specific, so please take it with a grain of salt.

From - http://www.shootingsoftware.com/barrel.htm

Secondary Pressures

PressureTrace collects more data then competitive products previously used by shooters. Our output is also not filtered or "smoothed" so "what you see is what occurred". Other strain gage systems either do not collect sufficient data to see anomalous secondary pressures or they are filtering it out as noise.

A short-lived debate occurred when shooters could first see the severity of some secondary pressure spikes. Understandably, some shooters did not want to accept how often it occurs or the severity; especially when the subject has been largely ignored by shooting magazines.

A conclusion by some was that PressureTrace picked up barrel harmonics. In an attempt to prove this theory one shooter even hung a bowling ball off the end of his barrel, but of course there was no change.

Strain gages change resistance when stretched in one direction. A strain gage glued "around" the chamber can only detect radial expansion of the steel under the gage. Only if a gage were attached longitudinally on a barrel would it be able to detect barrel "whip". Even then, movement at the thickest part of the barrel shows only minor current changes that appear as slight "squiggles" in a trace. Public debate over whether these secondary spikes are real was finally put to bed when Charley Sisk at Sisk Rifles blew the end off two barrels. Case Closed, it is real!

Indeed powder formulators and powder manufacturers have known about this phenomenon for some time. I first heard about it more then 20 years ago, before good instrumentation was readily available, and in reference to ball powders. A friend who worked at one of the powder companies once told me, "If consistency of performance where the only issue in powder design, ball powders would not exist. Ball powders are simply less expensive to manufacture and make it easier to produce ammo with consistent charges." He then went on to explain, " The three primary formulation features of powder is nitrocellulose content (or base material composition), granule shape and granule coatings. If the granule shape is spherical, then coatings become far more important to maintain a desired burn rate. Unfortunately coatings can burn off and are not the most reliable way to maintain a burn rate for every circumstance."

Power companies have no control over how a particular powder will be used. They must rely on ammo manufacturers and those who produce load manuals to keep things safe. Ammo manufacturers and compilers of load manuals do a tremendous job, but there is no way they can anticipate every possible combination that will cause secondary pressures. Given the litigious nature of our society, this is a real touchy subject, and most in the industry would prefer shooters remain ignorant of the phenomenon.

only1asterisk
February 6, 2005, 05:05 AM
pbhome71,

That was a light load of "slow" (for application) powder. This is a pretty good way of wrecking a gun. It should be pretty well proven to most people by now. I don't see any room for debate.

The contention that light loads of fast burning powders produce the same effect is absolutely unproven. You would think that if the effect is reproducible with slow powders, it should be reproducible with fast powders too. While the double curve may be found, the pressures are never enough to get you in trouble.
The idea that all light loads are bad is TOTAL BS. Using the right powder, greatly reduced loads are perfectly safe.


David

Fumbler
February 6, 2005, 12:54 PM
The problem isn't double chrages of fast powder, it is very light loads of relatively slow powders (like H110 in .357mag).

The problem isn't the light loads causing kB!'s, the problem is the slow powders won't ignite because the flash can't reach the powder and the primer pushes the bullet into the barrel causing a bore obstruction for the next shot.

Black Snowman
February 6, 2005, 01:33 PM
Thanks for that post pbhome71. It's always good to have some solid info.

grendelbane
February 6, 2005, 07:38 PM
The problem isn't the light loads causing kB!'s, the problem is the slow powders won't ignite because the flash can't reach the powder and the primer pushes the bullet into the barrel causing a bore obstruction for the next shot.

I have done half of that. :what:

Yes, it can happen. I was fortunate, I did not fire that second shot. It was too light of a load of 296, (H-110's twin brother), in a .45 Colt.

The bullet made it half-way down the barrel. The load was from a reputable bullet manufacturer's loading manual.

296 is a good powder, but believe Winchester when they say not to use reduced loads.

mete
February 7, 2005, 02:51 PM
Thanks , that graph is a very clear illustration of what can happen with bad loading practices. Unfortunately there are many who refuse to believe it !!

griz
February 7, 2005, 04:17 PM
I'll preface this by saying I am not trying to call anybody a liar, just asking a question.

If the second pressure rise is real, and assuming that it is coming just before the bullet leaves the barrel, why are barrels built tapered toward the muzzle? Or more to the point, why don't they all blow up at the muzzle?

It seems to me that there is a long history of our technology accepting that the high pressure occurs in the first part of bullet travel, and as such we need more evidence than one chart to qualify as proof of this second spike.

Fumbler
February 7, 2005, 04:32 PM
If the second pressure rise is real, and assuming that it is coming just before the bullet leaves the barrel, why are barrels built tapered toward the muzzle? Or more to the point, why don't they all blow up at the muzzle?
They are tapered because the loads in question are unusually light loads. Commercial ammo will never be loaded like that.

I remember reading a test where a man turned a 30-06 barrel down, 1 inch in front of the chamber, to increasingly smaller diameters. He would fire ammo between each diameter reduction and the barrel did not rupture until the barrel wall was only 1/16 of an inch thick.

Third_Rail
February 7, 2005, 05:36 PM
Detonation of DBSP (modern double base smokeless powder) is harder to achieve than through a primer.

You need a primary high explosive with a booster charge to get it to detonate. I thought we all went over this before. ;)

mete
February 7, 2005, 06:29 PM
Griz, go to the website and take a look at the normal graphs [without spike ] and compare with the spiked one. These problems have been noted by a number of knowledgeble shooters for at least 30 years but it has taken a while to prove it as the graph does.

BluesBear
February 7, 2005, 08:27 PM
I'll bet a dollar to a doughnut that the light load featured in the graph exhibited quite a bright muzzle flash.

Muzzle flash is caused by the escape of burning gases. In theory a light charge should burn completely before the bullet leaves the muzzle and flash should be decreased.

What is happening to the rounds in the graph is a classic case of inconsistent powder burn.

In very light loads, where there is no filler used, the powder is spread out over the "floor" of the case. The primer ignites only a part of the powder and the resulting pressure forces the bullet and a portion of the powder charge down the barrel. One the pressure drops low enough the heat ignites the remaining powder. Usually the secondary pressure spike is still within SAAMI parameters.



When testing very light loads place a large piece of white butcher paper on the ground about 3 feet to 6 feet in front of your muzzle and in many cases you will be surprised at the amount of unburned powder you'll recover.

griz
February 7, 2005, 11:40 PM
OK, I looked at their site but I'm still not sold. I will not dispute the claims of detonations with reduced loads of slow powders. But these folks are talking about secondary high pressure spikes from common recommended loads of recommended powders. That is something else.

In the example shown here they blame it on the type of powder. I've never tried 2230, but many people have used it in 223's with much success. For what they say to be true, Accurate Arms would have had to know they are selling a dangerous powder, and still recommended it for that application.

They give another example where the pressure was almost 120,000 PSI at the muzzle with "reference" ammunition. They do not say if that is a handload or factory. Here I will repeat my question: why doesn't the gun blow up if the pressure is that high just before the bullet leaves? That would be twice the guns rated pressure, applied at the thinnest part of the barrel, the part not designed to even take the SAMMI max, so the barrel should let go.

They even say that factory loaded ammunition can have these dangerous pressures but apparently most of the ballistics labs in the country either have unsophisticated equipment that will not pick up the spike or are covering up the problem to keep sales high.

And last is this from their site:

Note: Secondary pressures readings taken at the chamber are lower and of longer duration then the actual event due to compression of gasses behind the bullet and the time required for expansion and contraction of barrel steel. The above event may have spanned only .1 milliseconds of time but could have reached 150,000 PSI!

This doesn't add up to me. I'm familiar with strain gages and their use, although I've never used one on a firearm. But they can install the strain gage on any part of the barrel they desire. There is no reason to limit their use to the chamber area. So to make that claim is unsupported speculation that could be verified if they choose to.

What do I think is going on? I think they are measuring some false pressure that only shows up in some loads. I don't know why it shows up at all, much less why with certain combinations only. But I do know that guns are not indestructible, and if you apply pressures as indicated by their instrumentation it would blow up the end of the barrel. (Yes I saw their claim that Sisk had this happen, but their link does not confirm it) At the end of their page they say there will still be doubters. Put me down in that category.

cracked butt
February 8, 2005, 02:49 AM
ntxt

cracked butt
February 8, 2005, 02:55 AM
I think if there was much truth to the article, cast bullet rifle shooters would be blowing themselves up in droves.

Lead bullets take very little pressure to push them down the bore, and shooters use powders ranging from light loads of fast burning powders like unique red dot, to loads of IMR-4227 and 2400 with a lot of space in the cases, to light loads of slower burning rifle powders like 4831 to 4895.

Powder burn rate too slow for the bullet.
Bullet weight too light for the powder's burn rate.
Bullet bore contact area less then normal for the bullet weight
Barrel longer then normal
Bore severely worn or incorrectly lapped (loose/worn toward the muzzle)
Moly in bore or moly coated bullets that reduce bore friction

Master Blaster
February 8, 2005, 03:35 PM
First off the Chart above it proports to show the dangerous effect of a light load. NONSENSE it shows no such thing.

From the Accurate arms data on their website:

http://www.accuratepowder.com/data/PerCaliber2Guide/Rifle/Standarddata(Rifle)/22Cal(5.56mm)/223%20Remington%20pages%20185%20to%20187.pdf

AA2230 40 grain Nosler BT max charge 26.4 FPS 3666 Pressure in CUP 51,562.

The chart above is showing a load that is .5 grains above the maximum load in the AA data. The AA data shows pressure in CUP so add 10% to convert to PSI ( a rough estimate not reliable) you get 57,000 PSI and the folks doing the test have added half a grain to the max load so 61-65,000 PSI is not out of reason for the load they are showing.

The load they are showing is not a light load.

So their theory about detonation based upon this evidence is :confused: :scrutiny:

g56
February 8, 2005, 03:44 PM
Looking at their charts and reading the article, my first thought is the phenomena he is showing might be related to his software or measuring equipment and may not even exist in real life. :uhoh:

I could be wrong, but what he is saying defies logic.

Vern Humphrey
February 8, 2005, 03:58 PM
For years there have been cases of guns blowing up with reduced charges. For a long time there was supposed to be a "detonation" phenominon -- and this was associated with reduced charges of slow-burning powders.

Again and again, examination revealed there was no "detonation." A detonation is a chemical reaction propagated by a shock wave -- and it's characteristic signature in steel is shattering, with a chrystaline structure plainly visible at the breaking point. All guns that blew up showed the stretching consistent with high pressuers, not with shockwaves.

The double spike phenominon shown in the graphs has been seen in many cases, and the explanation -- that the primer drives the bullet into the rifling, where it sticks, and a fraction of a second later the powder ignites, is the one most accepted by most ballisticians.

Note that some reloading manuals now caution against reducing recommended loads in some powders.

Art Eatman
February 8, 2005, 04:48 PM
About 30 or 35 years ago, a doctor brought a .243 rifle to the attention of the NRA staff. It was wrecked. The story, as I recall it, was that the doctor was adamant that he had not double-charged with a light load.

IIRC, the charge was around 25 grains, and of 3031. Now, a max load of 40 grains of 3031 (behind a 70-grain bullet) almost fills the case; I can believe that he didn't successfully load 50 grains into it.

At the time, the consensus was, "We don't know why."

Now, 35 years ago, nobody ever spoke of a "double spike"; that phenomenon wasn't known.

Stipulating the doctor was correct, this is the only recorded case of which I know about a light load and detonation. Ever since then, powder manufacturers have spoken against using slow-burning powders in reduced charging. (May have been other events; I haven't read of them, is all. Shrug.)

I've long used pistol and shotgun powders in reduced loads in my '06--since 1950. More recently I did the same for .30-30, .30-40 and .308. No problems whatsoever. I've found that 2400 works, and that's plenty good for me.

FWIW, Art

Vern Humphrey
February 8, 2005, 05:16 PM
Quote:
-------------------------
Stipulating the doctor was correct, this is the only recorded case of which I know about a light load and detonation.
--------------------------

Not a "detonation." The rifle exhibited the characteristic stretching of excess pressure, not the shattering associated with detonation.

The best bet is a hangfire in which the primer drives the bullet into the rifling before the powder ignites.

Clark
February 9, 2005, 01:06 AM
When I plug the bullet, powder, caliber, and charge into Quickload, it gives me about the same pressure for the first hump, and just as the second hump starts, the bullet exits the barrel at .9 milli seconds.

I am designing a strain gauge amplifier, and I have a circuit to cut out the second hump. That is when the gun makes a big bang sound and the barrel rings like a bell. It has little to do with the peak pressure of the load.

I don't worry about detonation, no one has ever been able to replicate
it, and many have tried.
I don't believe in crop circles, UFOs, global warming, second hand
smoke, the Bermuda Triangle, Bigfoot, or leprechauns either.

griz
February 9, 2005, 05:30 PM
the bullet exits the barrel at .9 milli seconds.

My first impression was their data was showing a problem with the equipment reacting to the near instantaneous drop in pressure when the bullet left the barrel. Glad to hear some confirmation of barrel time, I didn't know how long it was.

Gewehr98
February 9, 2005, 09:59 PM
"2.8gr Bullseye Surprise"? (With respect to .38 Special light wadcutter loads)

Frohickey
February 9, 2005, 10:08 PM
Yes, it can happen. I was fortunate, I did not fire that second shot. It was too light of a load of 296, (H-110's twin brother), in a .45 Colt.

The bullet made it half-way down the barrel. The load was from a reputable bullet manufacturer's loading manual.

That is why 'economical' loads are not that safe. I would rather use a powder that fills most of the case, if only to ensure that a double charge is impossible without overflowing, and a correct charge is something that can be visually checked.

Art Eatman
February 9, 2005, 11:26 PM
Not arguing with you, if we're talking about the same deal, but my memory has it that "detonation" was the word used at that time. However, I grant that it was a while back. :)

So: "The best bet is a hangfire in which the primer drives the bullet into the rifling before the powder ignites."

My question is, how does this happen? Or, why? And, why doesn't it happen more often?

Art

Clark
February 9, 2005, 11:55 PM
I have had 20 gr H110 250 gr XTP in 45 Colt fire ok, and then 21 gr not ignite and stick in the forcing cone.

H110 needs a heavy crimp so that powder gets extra time to ignite. It is ball powder and that gives extra velocity and nice metering, but hard to light.

Vern Humphrey
February 10, 2005, 11:00 AM
Quote:
----------------------------
Not arguing with you, if we're talking about the same deal, but my memory has it that "detonation" was the word used at that time. However, I grant that it was a while back.
----------------------------

The word "detonation" has a specific meaning -- a chemical reaction propagated by a shockwave. No case of "detonation" in a firearm that I'm aware of has ever evidenced the shattering characteristic of a detonation.

And at the time the word was being tossed around, there were people who said exactly that -- "It's pressure, not detonation."

Quote:
---------------------------------
So: "The best bet is a hangfire in which the primer drives the bullet into the rifling before the powder ignites."

My question is, how does this happen? Or, why? And, why doesn't it happen more often?
----------------------------------

It rarely happens -- which is what made these Ka-booms so mysterious. Precisely HOW a hangfire happens is unknown. But they DO happen.

Art Eatman
February 10, 2005, 11:23 AM
:D Hmmm. Sorta like betting on twelves at Vegas. After sixty years of making loud noises, is my time coming?

:), Art

Vern Humphrey
February 10, 2005, 11:40 AM
Quote:
-------------------------------
Hmmm. Sorta like betting on twelves at Vegas. After sixty years of making loud noises, is my time coming?
-------------------------------

Could be -- how many fingers do you have left? :D

jr-rsi
June 7, 2006, 10:54 AM
I am late to this thread but note the reference to information from RSI. The pressure curve and information from the RSI web site is not for a load with a light powder charge. It is a full .223 Remington load under a "light" bullet! The secondary pressures that result are an entirely different phenomenon then that associated with severe pressures from a light powder charge. The article's subject refers to secondary pressures caused by a light wt. bullet "outrunning" gas produced by a powder which is too slow. Secondary pressure events are actually common. The one in the graph is just a gross example. Even factory ammo will sometimes produce secondary pressures in the 50 to 60,000 PSI range. These events are of extremely short duration and near the muzzle.

A light powder charge (low load density) can allow the primer to flash the length of the case so burn is initiated laterally for much faster rise time, etc. Depending on the powder chemistry and method of burn rate control, the burn rate "Might" be accelerated and if substantial powder still remains in the system, serious problems "Might" occur. That is not what is being described in the data from RSI posted by pbhome71. Me thinks this thread is on two different buses.....

Jim Ristow
RSI

Ol` Joe
June 8, 2006, 02:20 AM
Jim good to see ya here.
Has anyone tried a gage at the muzzle yet to see if the spikes found by the gage at the chamber match a second gages reading at that end?

Rectodynia
June 8, 2006, 02:23 PM
I mentioned a "knowledge" of the potential for a small charge detonation in a letter to Hodgdon Powder a year or so ago. They wrote back and told me this "problem" is a myth.

Rectodynia
_________________________________________________

"I don't want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub."
-- Grover Norquist

Grump
June 8, 2006, 02:43 PM
why doesn't the gun blow up if the pressure is that high just before the bullet leaves? That would be twice the guns rated pressure, applied at the thinnest part of the barrel, the part not designed to even take the SAMMI max, so the barrel should let go.

Don't go blowing off such GUESSING based on your superior intellect until you can give us some idea of the elastic yeild strength of steel type xyz in a cross-sectional thickness of abc barrel thickness.

Look at the thinnest part of a cylinder wall of a .454 Casull revolver, and compare it with the thickness at the muzzle of your most pencil-weight highpower rifle barrel. Do the same with that high-intensity modified .38 Super round Winchester tried a few years ago (peak pressure rated for 45,000 PSI or CUP, IIRC).:rolleyes:

mrmeval
June 8, 2006, 09:08 PM
Doesn't a squib load need a filler? I'm not a reloader but I recall shooting a few like that. The person stated that some squib loads could be dangerous without it. I just trusted them.

It was there gun so I wasn't too worried.

griz
June 9, 2006, 02:33 PM
Don't go blowing off such GUESSING based on your superior intellect until you can give us some idea of the elastic yeild strength of steel type xyz in a cross-sectional thickness of abc barrel thickness.

OK. I will admit I didnít do the math last year when I posted that. I based my assumption (Guess if you prefer) on much the same reasoning as you used, IE: To handle 454 pressures, they had to make the cylinder out of a stronger steel to keep from sending the top strap through the roof. And that was with 454 pressures of somewhere around 50,000 PSI. (Please do not tell me what the exact SAMMI pressure is, it doesnít matter) To keep it related to rifles, I was also thinking that the barrel wall is substantially thicker over the chamber than at the muzzle. Why would that be if they expected the same pressure at both ends?

Well anyway I apologize for skipping the math but will do it for you now. Using 4140 steel and not heat treating it to be too brittle, the yield strength of the material is right at 100,000 PSI. Assuming a barrel OD at the muzzle of .5 inches and a bore of .3 inches, the barrel should yield at 125,000 PSI. While that would probably not be considered blown up, only irreparably damaged, I will also point out that the case in the action you are holding in you hands must also take 120-150 KSI. I donít think any will without showing obvious signs of severe overpressure. So I will stand by my earlier "guess" that their measurements are wrong.

Art Eatman
June 9, 2006, 03:29 PM
mrmeval, the purpose of the filler is to keep the powder near the primer in order that there be uniform burning from shot to shot. It's an accuracy or group-size thing.

You can get the same effect by elevating the muzzle after reloading a rifle chamber, or after cocking a revolver (as in the old western movies).

One of my plinker loads is 20 grains of 2400 in an '06 behind most any old bullet. Cast, or miscellaneous leftover jacketed. I've never bothered with a filler. I have found that the groups are a bit tighter if I tilt the rifle up before shooting.

Art

taliv
June 9, 2006, 04:24 PM
ol joe + 1

good to see you on here, Jim!

Peter M. Eick
June 10, 2006, 11:44 AM
Back in the may to june of 1967 in Handloader magazine, this guy named Col. Ashley really stuck his foot in it describing "Secondary Explosion Effect" for these type of detonations. The follow up letters by various experts with real data is kind of an eye opening reading. There is a lot of research out of the University of Michigan back in the 60's about this problem.

I bought the 40 years of Handloader in DVD and have been slowly reading the old issues. I find it fascinating how 40 years ago, we worried about the same problems as today.

Go read the article and the follow letters in issues 8 and 9 (I am still reading 10).

Travis Two
June 10, 2006, 03:36 PM
In the case of the 148gr.wadcutter and the 2.7 gr bullseye surprise that turned out to be a myth. Many years ago and it was published in the gun magazines, Hercules (now Alliant) took that myth to task by using a military detonator and small charges of Bullseye in .38 spl cases in an attempt to make the powder detonate. They could not, with repeated testing under a variety of conditions, get the powder to detonate. Since many commercial loaders using automatic loading machines were loading many tens of thousands of these rounds (as that was the most popular round in use for police departments training and also heavily used by PPC shooters) This was an area of great concern to Hercules at that time. Hercules did find that 148 gr. wadcutters when seated deeper than normal caused excessive pressure. and when coupled with double charges the results were indeed disastorous. But when used normally it was impossible to make it detonate.

Dave R
June 10, 2006, 04:06 PM
FWIW, here's my personal experience with this.

I posted on another forum (Accuratereloading.com?) about a reduced load in a .308, running about .30-30 level, using H335. It loaded the case to about 55% of capacity, or somewhere around there.

THE Bruce Hodgdon PM'ed me and advised me not to use H335 at that low a load. I asked if H4198 (the only other faster rifle powder I had on hand) would be a better choice. He replied that it would.

BluesBear
June 12, 2006, 08:44 AM
THE Bruce Hodgdon PM'ed me and advised me not to use H335 at that low a load. Was this advice offered because of the danger of a "detonation" or because that a load that light might not push the bullet clear of the muzzle?

Dave R
June 12, 2006, 03:30 PM
Was this advice offered because of the danger of a "detonation" or because that a load that light might not push the bullet clear of the muzzle? Risk of detonation. The H335 load was pushing about 1900fps, so no danger of the bullet not exiting. He talked about the powder load only filling 55% of the case, or so, and said that was not enough for a powder that slow, and recommended using a faster powder.

BluesBear
June 12, 2006, 10:19 PM
So he admitted to you that his company was producing and selling a powder that when a case is loaded loaded only half full with it has the possibility of detonation???

blackpanther
June 14, 2006, 02:34 PM
Years ago people used "kapok" spelling? pillow stuffing and put a wad in the case to hold the powder at the base.I am thinking of buying a Ruger black hawk .45acp-.45colt convertable and was reading every thing I could find on the .45 colt loads.Some body did a test with the .45 colt because it was shooting huge groups with light loads.He held the revolver pointed up so the powder was in the base next to the primer.Next he pointed it down so the powder was at the bullet base.He got a large spread in velocity.He slowly lowered are raised the revolver to shooting position.Up higher velocities than down.

Ed

BluesBear
June 14, 2006, 03:33 PM
That is common when using small charges in large cases. When the powder is spread out it's harder for the primer flame to ignite it.
This is the main reason Trail Boss powder was developed.

Kapok, dacron, polyfill or whatever is a good enough solution but you have to be careful. Many people use too much filler to keep the powder at the base. When you use too much filler, upon firing, it can create uneven pressure against the base of your bullet and actually cause your accuracy to get worse. Keyholing is a common indication that you're using too much filler.

I have gotten better results by placing a cardboard wad over the powder and then using the bare minimum of filler to hold the wad in place.

But nowadays for light loads in .41/.44/.45 I just use Trail Boss.

Ol` Joe
June 15, 2006, 12:35 AM
I asked Alliant about light load detonation in a E-Mail and recieved this reply...

The detonation theory is just that...a theory. We have seen no evidence to confirm that it actually happens. However, it is certainly worth consideration when loading. it is best not to venture outside of recommended load data. Thanks for your interest in contacting us and have a nice day.

Ben Amonette
Consumer Service Manager
Alliant Powder Company
www.alliantpowder.com


I think the jury is still out on this one.

BluesBear
June 15, 2006, 01:21 AM
We have seen no evidence to confirm that it actually happens.In fact NO ONE has been able to create a detonation with a light load in a small arms cartridge.

When will folks stand up and admit that they blew up their gun because they loaded a double charge?

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