What are your goto powders for the “mild” to the “wild”?


March 18, 2008, 10:34 AM
Hi all,

Been reloading now going on close to a year, and my quest for the “optimum” powders is continuing for the 9MM, .40, .45ACP & .38/.357….

I’m going to place a large order for small & large pistol primers soon and am looking to get more powder also.

It seems pretty common that you more experienced fellows have at least 2 powders to cover the min to max on a certain caliber you load for.
Some from the same company, some from different companies for a single caliber.

Now I’ve tried a half dozen powders’ so far at different charge weights from low to high and know what’s been good in my guns so far.
But I want to go to the next level for accuracy, recoil, and shooting comps coming up soon…loads for casual fun at the range and loads for the more serious stuff.

So I’ve been pouring over the load books and this site looking for 2 powders that would cover the mild & hot ends of the curve, and if they work for more than one caliber all the better.
And if only one works from low to high, great, but that doesn’t seem to be the case…

Planning on a chrony real soon to get a better handle on my loads also.

Thought a thread covering your favorite “2” goto powders would be interesting for the less experienced.

Many thanks, T

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March 18, 2008, 10:42 AM
I like red-dot for the light stuff, and Tite group for full pull, but Titegroup works well on reduced stuff as well.JMHO Maybe some Bullseye as well

March 18, 2008, 10:53 AM
Sort of a hard question to answer, as do you like chocolate or vanilla ice cream. However to take a shot at your question(no pun intended), my two "goto" powders would have to be 231 and Blue Dot. IMHO they these two would cover the whole spectrum of loads for your listed calibers. If limited to just one powder, that would have to be Unique for your rounds. Good shooting. :)

The Bushmaster
March 18, 2008, 10:55 AM
W-231 and W-296 Handgun
W-748 and H4831SC Rifle

March 18, 2008, 10:55 AM
Pistol: Alliant Promo for Auto pistol, 2400 for Mag pistol. Both of those make good cast bullet powders too.

Rifle: Varget, WC860, IMR-7383

March 18, 2008, 12:21 PM
unique mild and 2400 wild

March 18, 2008, 12:24 PM
W748, H4895, Trailboss, Goex2FF, Goex 3FFF, Triple777, Pyrodex

Just to name a few

March 18, 2008, 12:35 PM
I only load pistol .40 S&W and .45 auto. and am a new handloader also. My Glock 27 (3.5"-.40) likes Hodgdon's Longshot a lot and the Glock 36 (3.8"-.45) likes Accurate's AA #5 for the high end loads. I use Alliant Bullseye for the range loads.

Get yourself a chronograph and document each test session. I have found my CED M2 to be absolutely indispensable for load development and documenting what the factory loads are doing in MY guns. The chrono has pointed me to the best non +P loads for MY guns that outperform most factory high end loads, including most +Ps. It is amazing to watch what just a .2 - .4 grain change can due to Avg, SD and ES.


BattleChimp Potemkin
March 18, 2008, 12:37 PM
I like to get aggressive with Titegroup (nice clean bang, awesome velocity in those calibers above). Occasional use of H110 for revolvers and blue dot for autos can be real fun!

Steve C
March 18, 2008, 01:00 PM
The 3 I use the most is W231, Unique and 2400.

March 18, 2008, 02:16 PM
I like red dot for the 45 acp....soft shooting and combat accurate. I will be loading for 9mm soon too and once my red dot is gone I am going to go to HP38/231 cuz I'm tried of flake powder and want to give ball a try.

March 18, 2008, 02:27 PM
I like unique for the light loads and H110 for the .357. I do not reload for the 9mm or .40 S&W.

I also use a lot of AA#5 for the .45.

March 18, 2008, 02:28 PM
Alliant Promo, and Herco. (2400 for the really hot stuff.)

Am about to start evaluating Bullseye because I got a new progressive press, and Bullseye will meter better than Promo.

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