Kick in a 1911


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cherryriver
January 2, 2007, 01:44 PM
I've spent a lot of time and effort trying to get my wife, who is no shooting enthusiast, to at least enjoy it a little bit, enough to blow off a box or two every now and then.
After a couple of years of this, there's no doubt in my mind the best thing for such a shooter is the 1911 platform. She tried a Glock 9mm but it got tiresome (anybody wanna buy a G17?). She tried an XD and a PT92, with no better results.
Revolvers work fine but the DA trigger requires practice, and holding only six isn't apparently enough for the plate-rack shooter. (Her centerfire of choice has been a Diamondback.)
I built a rimfire 1911 on an old alloy Commander frame with a Ciener Platinum top end and a good trigger, and this is her favorite gun.
All this is just to say I've tried to find a centerfire load that will shoot like the Cienerstein and knock down steel plates like the D-back.
In all the experimentation, I've settled on Winchester Super-Target (WST), since, as its makers claim, it has the least report (it's quiet) and is therefore easier on the shooter, plus it's fast so that it fits into the current thinking about heavy bullets and fast powder kicking the least.
So indeed, a 4.5gr load of the stuff with a 230gr Rainier round-nose makes major power factor and is downright soft to shoot in a steel gun. I go lower for plates, down to 3.5gr (a little less than 600fps), for that puffball feeling.
But on the other hand, I'd once tried Vihtavuori 340 in .45 and discovered an old box of loads in the cabinet the other day. It was the same 230grainers with 6.3gr of powder, well within book value. I took it out to the range and began using it up.
It was so ferocious, loud and kicking hard, that I feared for my Combat Commander enough to chrono the load.
On a chilly day, it averaged barely over 700fps. No signs of overpressure were seen.
I followed up with a magful of the 4.5 WST/same bullet load. 30fps faster, and far less kick and boom. Much less.
Not only did I then remember why I quit using the VV340 (not to mention the erratic speeds it gave in .45 and .357), I came to appreciate the many pounds of WST I've expended since.
My experience suggests that other medium powders do something similar, including Unique and 231, but I haven't done the actual side-by-side thing with them.
This all applies to the .45, but now I've gotten a 9mm Combat Commander and did some loads for that, too. Winchester White Box throws its 115grainer at around 1100fps as I recall (trusting to memory).
My pet load of a 147gr Berry's RNTMJ with 4.0gr Winchester Super-Field goes about 920fps on the same day, with perfect function. But it's far less blasty and kicks significantly less than the WWB. Big difference again.
Just an observation.

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BigJakeJ1s
January 2, 2007, 10:12 PM
For a pistol a lot of people like the feel of, try a CZ75B.

Andy

Walkalong
January 2, 2007, 11:12 PM
It was so ferocious, loud and kicking hard, that I feared for my Combat Commander enough to chrono the load.

I got similar results with N340. Too much recoil for the velocites. I'll try WST. I have had good results with AA # 2 in the .45 but have been curious about WST & WSF.

3006mv
January 3, 2007, 12:11 PM
"My experience suggests that other medium powders do something similar, including Unique and 231, but I haven't done the actual side-by-side thing with them." Cherryriver are you saying that Unique kicks a lot also or the opposite? Just wondering, I am not sure what you were saying here. I have never used VV but have used Unique and it seems pretty mild until you get up to 6.5 to 7.0 gr.

rchernandez
January 3, 2007, 12:34 PM
I've spent a lot of time and effort trying to get my wife, who is no shooting enthusiast, to at least enjoy it a little bit, enough to blow off a box or two every now and then.

My advice, start her off with a .22lr pistol or revolver. Ruger Mark II/III or a S&W 617. Then work your way up...at "her" pace. Wait for her to ask to shoot "something bigger".

Worked well enough with my daugther. She started with a .22lr, then worked her way up to .38spl/9mm, until she got to the .45acp which she found "too loud". She settled shooting 9mm in a Glock 19. After the novelty of shooting wore out, she settled into a Sigarms Trailside .22lr that she shot for Bullseye for one season. She plans to shoot Bullseye during the summer months from school. I've since added anatomical grips for the Trailside:)

YMMV, Good luck!



added: almost forgot, try loading a very light bullet with little more powder. I occasionally shoot a Valiant 160gr bullet on top of 4.4gr of Bullseye..."felt" recoil is so light it almost feels light cheating on timed and rapid:D

cherryriver
January 3, 2007, 01:38 PM
3006mv:
Your question about Unique is one I have, too. After this VV340 v. WST inadvertant "test", I began to wonder, too. Since Unique is almost a full click slower than Bullseye/WST/VV310 (the new hit powder with the action pistol set), I'm getting curious enough to try it out.
I used many pounds of Unique down through the years- it was practically the only thing I used until I tried 231 about ten years ago. The new "CLEANER!" version, which I do find more tidy, still does great work. Pretty much using it only for semi-full .357 loads plus backup for everything else when I run out of whatever (it's good in 9mm, too), I haven't made up a .45ACP round with it in several years.
Later this week, I'll do a hundred or two and do the side-by-side thing again. In addition, I've just found some VV310 and I'll make a hundred of those loads, too. Then Saturday it's off to the range, chronograph under one arm and recoil testing device at the end of the other.
Bill

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