.44Mag loads and Winchester 231.


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meinbruder
January 12, 2006, 10:47 PM
Can anyone suggest a load for a 240gr LaserCast slug using W231 powder? I would like a muzzle velocity of about 1100fps and all my manuals only show loads to about 850fps. Thanks in advance.
Michael

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Mal H
January 13, 2006, 12:37 AM
What gun will you be shooting (model and barrel length)?
How are you checking for bullet speed, chrono?


"... all my manuals only show loads to about 850fps"

Probably for good reason. It could be that using a relatively fast powder like W231, the pressure excursions might be pushing the envelope, so to speak. You might have to go with either a lighter bullet or a slower powder to achieve your goal. Any particular reason you have to use W231?

Having said all that, I will give you what I would do if a change in bullet or powder is not possible. I would slowly up the load of the W231 in reasonable increments (0.1 grains, but not greater than 0.2 grains) until I either achieved the bullet speed I wanted or I reached a point that was unsafe. I would check the case after every firing for signs of excessive pressure - such as an increase in web diameter or excessive flattening or flow of the primer.

meinbruder
January 13, 2006, 02:19 AM
[QUOTE=Mal H]What gun will you be shooting (model and barrel length)?
How are you checking for bullet speed, chrono?


"... all my manuals only show loads to about 850fps"

Probably for good reason. It could be that using a relatively fast powder like W231, the pressure excursions might be pushing the envelope, so to speak. You might have to go with either a lighter bullet or a slower powder to achieve your goal. Any particular reason you have to use W231? [endquote]


Hello Mal

I have a S&W M29, six inch, and a Ruger Super Blackhawk, eight inch. The Smith showed some pressure sensitivity with an AA#2 load of 9.2 grains with the same bullet, I thought I would change powders. The Speer #12 book shows a lead slug with a 6.5gr of 231 for 867fps load. A jacketed slug of the same weight claims a load of 10.0gr for 1138fps; velocities from the book are in a Ruger Redhawk with 7 ˝ inch barrel. Charge weights are listed as maximum so I thought it would be best to start lower.

No reason to use 231, other than the fact that I have it; it can feed 9mm or .45acp. The goal is to use up the slugs before changing over to a 200gr slug without buying more powder. FWIW, neither the Speer book nor Winchester show any loads for lead slugs so I suppose I should just go buy some new powder. I might have enough AA#2 to do the job and then throw away the balance of the slugs or powder at the end of the run.

I was hoping to avoid a long work up for a couple of hundred loads. :cool:
Michael

Mal H
January 13, 2006, 03:25 AM
But, AA #2 is in the same boat as W231, it's a fast powder. For a medium speed load like you're looking for, powders like AA #5 or #7 and Alliant 2400 would be better choices. There are many others, those are just a few examples. You're trying to get W231 and AA#2 to do things they weren't designed to do.

fecmech
January 14, 2006, 05:35 PM
The Winchester powder guide shows 11.0 grs of 231 for a 240gr lead swc. Velocity is 1285 (optimistc I'm sure) and 38000 cup. Out of my Ruger SBH 7.5" bbl. 10.5grs with a 250 Keith cast swc did 1125 fps and was very accurate. Nick

meinbruder
January 14, 2006, 08:54 PM
The Winchester powder guide shows 11.0 grs of 231 for a 240gr lead swc. Velocity is 1285 (optimistc I'm sure) and 38000 cup. Out of my Ruger SBH 7.5" bbl. 10.5grs with a 250 Keith cast swc did 1125 fps and was very accurate. Nick

I looked at the Winchester book too. They don't show a "starting" load for the Mag cartridge, unless one starts from the load given for the Special cartridge. :scrutiny:

With a velocity of near to 1300fps I would think that even hardcast would leave racing stripes in the barrel, best to shoot jacketed at that speed.
Mike

fecmech
January 14, 2006, 10:35 PM
"With a velocity of near to 1300fps I would think that even hardcast would leave racing stripes in the barrel, best to shoot jacketed at that speed."

Mike--Leading in Magnum revolvers at 1300-1400fps is not a big problem and harder is not always better. Over the past 30 years I've shot at least 25-30k cast mag loads in .357 and .44 with no leading The important part is fit to your cylinder throat diameter . The bullet should not be able to fall thru a well cleaned cylinder throat. It should be at least a very snug push through fit or tighter, also the lube quality is a factor in the equasion. I have never used Lasercast bullets as I cast my own so I can't speak to their lube or how their bullet fits your gun. The load I gave you at 10.5 grs reduced to 10 grs would probably put you in you 1100fps velocity range and as far as if it leads, you won't know till you try. I burned up a number of 8 lb. kegs of 296, 25 grs. at a time behind that same 250 gr Keith with no problems running 1375 fps. Good Luck Nick

newfalguy101
January 14, 2006, 10:46 PM
The lasercast bullest are, I believe, advertised as being hard enough to live at jacketed speeds.

When using a hardcast bullet in my .44, I use the jacketed bullet data, and I run WW296.

My Hornady manual shows 8.2 gr of WW231 for a velocity of 1000fps, and is shown to be a MAX loading.

meinbruder
January 15, 2006, 12:08 AM
Hi Nick

Thank You, for all your advice. My M29 has shown pressure sensitivity and a tendency to accumulate lead fouling, which is a problem to remove, so I assume the throat and bore are on the small size. My main concern is lead fouling which is why I want to keep the load value at about 1100fps. My Ruger SBH eats anything the Smith snorts at, no lead fouling or any pressure problems but a single action isn’t the best choice for carry. A friend of mine teased me mightily when he caught me with the Smith, he seems to like the Glock 9mm; I told him he had a nice “ladies” gun. (You should have seem him turn purple.) :D

I’ll try your load in the next couple of weeks, working up from a lower number. Especially in view of newfalguy101 reporting a max load of 8.2 grs from the Hornady manual. :scrutiny:

Gentlemen, thank you both.
Mike

newfalguy101
January 15, 2006, 01:46 AM
I’ll try your load in the next couple of weeks, working up from a lower number. Especially in view of newfalguy101 reporting a max load of 8.2 grs from the Hornady manual. :scrutiny:

Gentlemen, thank you both.
Mike

Please keep in mind that the Hornady loading is running SWAGGED bullets, and Hornady cautions about running swagged lead bullets in EXCESS of 1000fps, so that MAY be the level at which Hornady started to find excessive leading, and NOT the top load by pressure.

Fourth edition manual

I also have the Winchester load manual ( 11.0 gr 231, LSWC, 1385fps) but I prefer to see starting loads as well as max, so I rarely ever even look at it anymore.

meinbruder
January 15, 2006, 01:57 AM
Please keep in mind that the Hornady loading is running SWAGGED bullets, and Hornady cautions about running swagged lead bullets in EXCESS of 1000fps, so that MAY be the level at which Hornady started to find excessive leading, and NOT the top load by pressure.
.

Hi newfalguy101

Swaged is definitely “old school” and implies a relatively soft alloy. I’m sure the issue is leading rather than high pressure if what you report is correct. :cool:
Mike

anonanon
January 18, 2006, 11:19 PM
I've found that you get leading at relatively low velocity levels with fast (hot) powders like Bullseye, 231 and Unique, and relatively little leading at much faster loadings with a slow (cool) powder like 296(akaH110)

meinbruder
January 20, 2006, 03:56 AM
I've found that you get leading at relatively low velocity levels with fast (hot) powders like Bullseye, 231 and Unique, and relatively little leading at much faster loadings with a slow (cool) powder like 296(akaH110)

High velocity plus soft alloy equals lead fouling. Combustion is a constant.
Win296 is not H110! I've loaded both for years and can tell the difference by sight..
Mike
Portland, OR

wanderinwalker
January 20, 2006, 11:56 AM
I know I shouldn't be posting this as a recommendation, but I really like 8.2gr of WW231, a .44 Magnum case (any ol' case works with this load for me: W-W, R-P, PMC, FC, LE; I mix them all), a Winchester Large Pistol primer and whatever 240gr lead SWC I can get my hands on (currently waiting to go try out some Oregon Trails). Haven't chrono'ed them out of my 629 but seat-of-the-hands tells me about 1000-fps.

You can get to 1100-fps with 231, at less than the listed MAX in Winchester's book (IIRC it comes around 9.5gr), but I stopped doing that and use WW296 when I feel the need for speed.

Steve C
January 20, 2006, 02:37 PM
I looked at the Winchester book too. They don't show a "starting" load for the Mag cartridge, unless one starts from the load given for the Special cartridge.


Start loads are a 10% reduction of the max listed. This is common reloading proceedure for working up loads. You do have to do the math though. So start at 9.9 to 10.0 grs.

In genral I've found the Winchester velocity data to be pretty accurate depending upon the particular pistol as different handguns even of the same barrel length will give average velocity differences of as much as 100 fps or more with the same ammo.

meinbruder
January 21, 2006, 12:36 AM
I know I shouldn't be posting this as a recommendation, but I really like 8.2gr of WW231, a .44 Magnum case (any ol' case works with this load for me: W-W, R-P, PMC, FC, LE; I mix them all), a Winchester Large Pistol primer and whatever 240gr lead SWC I can get my hands on (currently waiting to go try out some Oregon Trails). Haven't chrono'ed them out of my 629 but seat-of-the-hands tells me about 1000-fps.

You can get to 1100-fps with 231, at less than the listed MAX in Winchester's book (IIRC it comes around 9.5gr), but I stopped doing that and use WW296 when I feel the need for speed.

You'll like the Oregon Trail bullets, no leading even at somewhat faster speeds. I've decided to drop down in weight and try a lighter slug when these 240gr run out. Your load is where I plan to start.
Thank You :)
Mike
Portland, OR.

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