Reloaders- I'm old before my time, I've darn near quit trying new things with pistols


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Ben Shepherd
December 16, 2006, 02:20 PM
Flipping through my load notes I realize that I haven't developed a new load for anything in quite some time. I've got about 6 loads per caliber that I stick with.

I run a light, medium, and heavy slug at low or high velocity and that's about it. Perfectly happy that way. These loads work, so I run 'em. Don't fix it if it ain't broke I guess?

Anyone else this way?

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The Bushmaster
December 16, 2006, 02:45 PM
When I restock my loading bench I usually buy one pound of a different powder to test in various firearms. If it shows promise I start a testing program to develope the best load that it will produce with bullet, primer and case variences. AND compare them with my (as I call them) standard loads. Other then that I am with you. I have my favorite loads and I tend to stick with them.

.38 Special
December 16, 2006, 02:47 PM
Sure. The purpose of tinkering, for me, is to find the load that works. Once I find that load I am done, and the satisfaction of having found the perfect load stays with me.

Other folks like to tinker for tinkering's sake, but that ain't me. :)

LHB1
December 16, 2006, 03:10 PM
Me too. I spend less time experimenting with loads and more time practicing my shooting skills. Back in the '60's and '70's, I had to experiment with every combination of powder, bullet, primer, case brand, sizing/reloading technique, etc. that was available. Now I find one or two standard loads for each gun (pistol, rifle, shotgun) and shoot, shoot, ...

Good shooting and be safe.
LB

Sistema1927
December 16, 2006, 03:19 PM
I love to reload, but I love to shoot even more. Once I find something that works I stick with it.

steveno
December 16, 2006, 03:35 PM
I have no more than 2 loads for any given rifle or shotgun. that includes 38 spec , 45 acp , 41 mag , 45 colt , 22-250 , 270 or 45-70

Walkalong
December 16, 2006, 07:27 PM
I started playing with new powders and bullets around January and have settled on a couple of things (for now). (Defense practice velocities,not target velocities)

AA # 2 in the .45 with Pltd. and Jktd. bullets from 185 to 250 Grs.
185 at about 875 to 900 FPS - 4" Barrel
200 at about 825 to 850 FPS - 4" Barrel
230 at about 775 to 800 FPS - 4" Barrel
250 at about 725 to 750 FPS - 4" Barrel
(try some 250's, It's like mortor fire - a nice soft push, a wait, a thud. Cool):)

Loads above were #'s 55,56,57,& 58 (250 is an old one) not including old lead bullet loads.

Universal Clays in the .40 for Zero 165 Gr. HP at around 1025 to 1050 FPS -3"
Barrel
AA # 2 in the .40 for 180 Gr. Pltd. at around 875 to 900 FPS - 3" Barrel

9MM ? still playing. AA # 5 shows promise.

N320 & N330 just came in. Along with my N310 I have some more playing to do!

bakert
December 17, 2006, 10:01 AM
I only load handgun calibers and still try a few different loads in .45 Colt and .44 mag from time to time, but all others are loaded with the same powders and bullet weights exactly as I have them listed in my notes because they work in MY guns.

armoredman
December 17, 2006, 10:32 AM
I have a two page list of experimented loads in 9mm alone, and still "tinkering", just for grins and giggles. I am just starting to "tinker" with 7.62x54R, and have a few 303 Brit loads that are quite nice. The only one I quit fooling around with is 7.62x39mm, as none of my platforms are accurate enough to justify it.
I reload as a relaxing, productive hobby, just to have fun on a day i can't shoot. I also need two more ammo cans...:cool:

MCgunner
December 17, 2006, 11:02 AM
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Flipping through my load notes I realize that I haven't developed a new load for anything in quite some time. I've got about 6 loads per caliber that I stick with.

I run a light, medium, and heavy slug at low or high velocity and that's about it. Perfectly happy that way. These loads work, so I run 'em. Don't fix it if it ain't broke I guess?

Anyone else this way?

Yup, me, too. I've got several pet .38 loads, several pet .357 loads, etc, etc for all handgun calibers. Of course, my rifles, I've worked up MOA or sub MOA hunting loads for and stuck with 'em, but the handguns, I've just settled on what works. For instance, 2.6 grains bullseye and a cast 148 grain wadcutter for .38 special. Is there a more traditional load than this? 5.0 grains Unique and a 158 SWC, old standby for hot .38. 14.5 grains 2400 and a 158 SWC for .357 magnum, old load I read about and developed 25 years ago.

I buy a new gun now, like the 3" Taurus M66 I picked up at a gun show the other day, I sit down and shoot my standard loads through it, don't even bother to work anything up for it, just see how it shoots with what I load. I might chronograph the new gun like I did with the 3" gun, but I stick with what I've settled on for loads.

I think the last load I worked up was my +P carry load for my .38 specials which uses 2400. I tried bluedot, but that stuff ain't great as a pistol powder. I also worked up a AA#9/180 XTP .357 load probably 10 years ago now. I read about it in a magazine. One common denominator here is I like to stock a minimal variety of powder and my powders are all old standbys. All these new powders have come out like varget and titegroup and such, I just ignore 'em, no interest. I don't even have 296 or 231 in my inventory, just Bullseye, Unique, and 2400. If I can't do it with Alliant (formerly Hercules) powders, it can't be done. LOL The Bluedot I have is left over from when I used to load shot shells.

I really don't get a lot out of working up standard pistol loads. If it's accurate (usually dependent on the bullet, mostly) and has an acceptable level of power for the use, it suits me. I get much more into working up rifle loads. Not just accuracy, but I chronograph 'em, run 'em through the exterior ballistics program, just get all into it. However, I haven't had a new rifle in quite a while. I only have three primary hunting rifles and only ever really use one of 'em much anymore, my favorite and the latest one I attained. I probably wouldn't have gotten that rifle, but I won a Remington 700 BDL in .25-06 at a gun show door prize. I didn't really want the BDL (have a .257 Roberts that shoots excellent and in the 25-06 class), so I traded it for the rifle I'd been wanting for a long while, a M7 Remington stainless in .308. The gun was slightly used and came with a target and load data for that load, a 1" five shot group on the target. I set up my dies, cranked out that load, went to the range and shot a 1" group with it and chronographed it. That was my load development. :rolleyes: I then stuck a 140 grain Barnes over the same powder charge in place of the 150 Nosler and shot that for group and over the chrony and I was done, instant hunting loads. I've since taken quite a few head of game with that gun and both loads and don't see a need for anything further.

I guess when you get old, you get set in your ways. But, I've always figured if it ain't broke, don't fix it. I don't get so into the exterior ballistics, either. Oh, I still run it through the computer, but over time you come to realize there ain't a WHOLE bunch of difference in drop tables even from belted magnums to standard rifle rounds. The main difference is energy delivered at longer ranges. I still set the guns up for whatever zero I deem necessary, but don't get all into the flat shooting aspects as much as I used to. I learned this before the 7mm STW craze came and went. LOL Never got the urge to trade my 7 mag for a STW for that reason. I mean, what's another 50 yards in PBR in the field? Big deal. If you're any kind of hunter, the 7 mag is more'n enough. You ain't going to be taking shots outside its range anyway if you have half a lick of sense and ethics about you. JMHO of course.

temmi
December 18, 2006, 01:47 PM
I have to admit I am the same way. I have developed loads for my guns and tend to stick with them as long as the keep performing… If I get sub MOA from a bench I quit.

The last “new” load I worked up was for my BAR 338WM… it would not shoot the load I use for my bolt… That said… I agree “if it’s not broken don’t fix it”

trickyasafox
December 18, 2006, 11:57 PM
i'm way old. i found a load that worked pretty well in a bunch of different calibers that uses the same powder and primer, and buy both in bulk.

sad to think of at 22 y/o :)

Uncle Don
December 19, 2006, 12:10 AM
Whew - I thought it was just me. I have gotten to the point that I've got a Green Dot load for all handgun I shoot and buy it 8# at a time. Took lots of experimenting over the years and glad I did it, but it was time to settle in.

olywa
December 19, 2006, 11:35 AM
Ben,
One thing I notice is how much I draw on other's experience because of the Web. It's a lot easier to get a handle on what might work better, or at least get a better starting point (normal cautions apply, of course). Boards like this one have been a tremendous source of information for me as I got started in reloading. I'm sure that has reduced the amount of experimentation that I've gone through as a new reloader.

Now I look for tweaks for my favorites. For instance, I have noticed that LilGun produces significantly lower pressures for 357 loads, at least on paper. So that will be the next powder I try. Maybe I'll find a new favorite load that shoots noticeably softer? Other things that tweak my interest are cleaner burn and lower flash. I'm finding that the best compromise still takes a little work. I wish there were some smaller size "trial" bottles of powder available.

JoeHatley
December 19, 2006, 01:37 PM
Anyone else this way?

Yes, but I take it even further. I have one load per caliber. If I want to do target shooting, personal defense, or hunting, I just choose the caliber best suited.

Joe

.38 Special
December 19, 2006, 02:05 PM
For instance, 2.6 grains bullseye and a cast 148 grain wadcutter for .38 special. Is there a more traditional load than this?
Well, yeah. The traditional load is 2.7 grains of Bullseye. Seriously! :p

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