Hodgdon Clays Universal


January 29, 2008, 12:02 PM
im confused about what charge to use with this powder for 230gr FMJ .45 acp. there are many abbreviations for clays powders that are similar but have very different charges. For example there is clays and universal but neither charge overlaps... the minimum of one is beyond tha max of the other. the hodgdon website isn't any help either. any one have experience with this powder?

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January 29, 2008, 12:10 PM
There is also International Clays that has some cowboy data, but is primarily marketed for shotguns and has a burning rate around Green Dot.

Just "Clays" has a very rapid burn rate, and Universal's rate is around Unique. I wrote Hodgdon years ago telling them what a bad idea it was in naming these propellants, and it seems others feel the same way.

I have used "Clays" and "International Clays" in low pressure applications, and it burns relatively clean, but does not meter as well as I am told Universal does. Either "Clays" of "Universal Clays" would be great in 45 Auto depending on what velocity and charge weight you want.

Good luck.

Jim Watson
January 29, 2008, 12:25 PM
Let me clarify: "Clays" and "Universal Clays" are two COMPLETELY different powders, not interchangeable AT ALL.

Many people avoid confusion by referring to Universal Clays as just "Universal."

I would use Universal for full power .45 ACP hardball. The faster burning Clays is more suitable for reduced target loads.

Mark whiz
January 29, 2008, 01:40 PM
DEFINITELY don't use that Clay for reloading......................................it would probably result in some dangerously whimpy loads. :eek: :D

I have some load data at home for my attempts with Universal Clays and .45ACP - I'll post them tonight.

From what I can recall from memory, I really didn't have great results with it in .45ACP - but I do have some excellent LSWC loads with .38Spcl and .357 Mag, also with 60gr JHPs in .32ACP.

January 29, 2008, 02:00 PM
I reload light plinking rounds with Universal. I am using Ranier 230Gr plated bullets over 5.2 grains of Universal with good results out of my Rock Island Arsenal Tactical Model. Min/Max loads for 230Gr FMJ bullets is 5.1Gr/5.6gr and for LRN it is 4.5Gr/5.4Gr. I also get good results using Universal for reloading .380, 9mm Largo, and .40S&W.

January 29, 2008, 02:23 PM
Yes, like Jim said, "Universal Clays" and "Clays" are entirely different powders. They can both be used with good results in the .45ACP, but at very different charge weights and different power levels. Read the data carefully.

January 29, 2008, 04:11 PM
thanks everyone for your help. I loaded a few rounds last night to entertain myself and used the universal data and picked 5.2 grains. Glad my guess worked out... now i can take them to the range :)

January 29, 2008, 08:09 PM
For me, and thru many thousands of rounds, 3.8 grains of ordinary Clays under a 200 grain lead semi-wadcutter, does very well for target work.

January 30, 2008, 05:18 PM
i called hodgdon to triple check what data i should use and they said to use universal. Thanks everyone for your help!

January 30, 2008, 05:37 PM
I load Universal for .45ACP and find it to be a very accurate combination. I also use it for .44 Mag.

Mark whiz
January 30, 2008, 06:31 PM
About the only acceptably accurate load using Universal with my Springer 1911 Mil-Spec is 6.5gr of Universal with a 200gr XTP bullet.

For 230gr jacketed bullets, my load books basically list 5.4gr up 6.9 - with 6.5 and up getting into the "pretty hot" category.

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