Got any reloading tips?


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Bullseye1100
November 22, 2008, 10:34 PM
I've been reloading for my rifles and revolvers for a while, so I"m not a bush rookie. But I've never reloaded for a semi auto and I"d like to start since my new aquisition of a 1911. Any tips? Including online vendors that have treated you well in the past and offer decent prices?

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woad_yurt
November 22, 2008, 11:26 PM
Midsouth Shooters Supply in Clarksville, TN has good prices and they're very nice to deal with. Most of my stuff came from them. Their shipping price is the actual price, too.

Floppy_D
November 22, 2008, 11:32 PM
Loading for semi-autos (particularly progressively) is a lot less prep work than for your rifles. For my semi-autos, I don't size, measure, lube or do any form of prep other than running them through carbide dies. A real minimum amount of work. Verify your OAL, but other than that, it is a much easier trip than rifle reloading. Also, Berry's is a good source of bullets, or better yet, cast your own.

CU74
November 23, 2008, 12:07 AM
Scroll down the main page here on THR to the Handloading and Reloading Forum; Check out the "stickies first and then dive in; Enjoy.:)

Bullseye1100
November 23, 2008, 12:10 AM
YEah, I saw the handload thread after I posted this. This forum navigates much differently than other forums I'm used to. I'll get the hang of it eventually.

John

1911 guy
November 23, 2008, 12:13 AM
I'll let others cover the suppliers, since I have a good local and don't mail order much.

For a .45acp, make sure your cases are clean. You don't need to tumble them every time, just when they are getting a bit grungy. Too much dirt too often can mess with your dies over time. Visually inspect each case to make sure there is no tumbling media inside. This reduces case capacity and has a much more pronounced effect than in larger capacity rifle cases.

Buy carbide dies, if you don't have them already. This eliminates case lube.

Shoot lead if you can find it. It's usually much cheaper than jacketed and works just fine. *Charge weights are different from lead to jacketed bullets* Use the correct load data.

Keep things a bit on the long side. Stick with as close to 230gr bullets as you can get, load them to max OAL, which should be magazine length. This is not true if using a wadcutter bullet, but i usually use conical lead.

Put a good crimp on the case. The crimp is different than the usual roll crimp used in most rifle cartridges. Pistol rounds use a taper crimp, a slight squeeze at the case mouth. Even with a cannelured bullet (not usual in .45 loads) there is just the slight taper crimp.

Use a powder that will not permit a double charge. If a double charge will physically fit into the case, choose another powder. Reloading the massive quantities involved in most handgun operations needs a few built in failsafes. Eliminate the double charge possibility.

Sunray
November 23, 2008, 01:01 AM
4.5 grains of Bullseye with a cast 230 grain RN or Flat Point with a light taper crimp shoots extremely well out of my Colt. Bullseye doesn't fill the case so double charges with a progressive are possible. I don't use a progressive press and check every case before seating a bullet.
.45 cases rarely need any trimming and most assuredly use carbide dies only. It's actually just the sizer die, but use 'em. They'll save you a lot of time.
Buy components locally. Hazmat and shipping fees will negate any cost savings if you buy on-line.

ArchAngelCD
November 23, 2008, 01:34 AM
It's my opinion 5.5gr W231 under a 230gr LRN bullet is one of the best handloads for the .45 Auto known to man. Powder Valley (http://www.powdervalleyinc.com/) has good prices and a large supply of reloading components. Since they ship from their own warehouse they only charge 1 hazmat fee for mixed orders of powder and primers.

earplug
November 23, 2008, 01:37 AM
Depending on what game your playing, and what range.

I only use lead, Short range bullseye I like 180 grain SWC. This also works for my steel load.
For stuff that needs a power factor, I like the soft push of a 230 grain.
For a all around bullet weight a 200 grain SWC seems to be a fine compromise. Seat them the same OAL as factory FMJ 230 rounds and most work just fine in most pistols.

CDH
November 23, 2008, 09:30 AM
1911 guy; you nailed it. Someone should make you a "sticky".

The only thing I disagree about is the use of lead rather than jacketed.
I hate lead fouling because it's such a PIA to remove from barrels.
The slightly higher cost of jacketed bullets is well worth it to me, and I recommend that for the same reason to others as well.

Deanimator
November 23, 2008, 10:08 AM
1. If you don't have a reloading manual with or for pistol, buy one.

2. Buy carbide dies so that you don't have to lube.

3. Make sure that you have a taper crimp die.

5. Seat and crimp separately.

6. Pay close attention to seating depth of the bullet. Use the overall length in the reloading manual, but adjust as necessary for YOUR gun.

7. Graf's, Wideners, and Midway for reloading supplies. Penn Bullets for hard cast lead bullets.

8. If you're using pistols with conventionally rifled barrels, you will save a LOT of money shooting cast bullets. I recently bought aftermarket barrels for my two Glocks just so that I could shoot cast bullets in them. Hard cast bullets at moderate velocities won't foul any more than jacketed bullets.

Ky Larry
November 23, 2008, 10:14 AM
Load in small quantities untill you come up with what works for your pistol.

Deanimator
November 23, 2008, 10:51 AM
Load in small quantities untill you come up with what works for your pistol.
And invest in an inertia bullet puller for when you make mistakes...

Bullseye1100
November 23, 2008, 09:28 PM
As I stated earlier in this thread, I'm still figuring out how to navigate this forum and I haven't yet figured out how to reply to an individual, so this post will be to everyone. Thanks for all the helpful information. I stumbled on this place while researching my new pistol and you guys are very helpful and informative. I had heard that reloading for a semi auto was kind of tricky but it sounds like that isn't entirely true. That makes me feel better. I don't have the dies yet but I havne't had the pistol for a week yet either. The dies will be on my Christmas list and I'll make sure they're carbide. The powder and bullet recommendations are greatly appreciated. I'm gonna shoot a few more boxes of factory stuff through it before I start with my handloads just to make sure that if there are any problems they're not my fault. Again, thanks for all your help.

John

nerfsrule2
November 24, 2008, 12:05 AM
I have also had good success with Natchez Shooters Supply.. Their web sight is a little hard to navigate through(They need more pics, when looking for individual items) But when they put something on sale no one will touch their prices.. FYI ..I purchased a Hornady Progressive press.. The Mfg is offering free bullets with every dollar spent on Hornady products..With the press they offered up to $300 in free bullets.. Depending on the Caliber...Good Luck

CU74
November 24, 2008, 12:19 AM
Print out Deanimator's post (#11) and tack it on the wall at your reloading bench.;)

- Add Oregon Trail's (http://laser-cast.com/) laser Cast bullets to your list of "lead" bullets.

- Check Midway's site daily - they have specials on blemished bullets once in awhile - priced right and they go fast.

ranger335v
November 24, 2008, 11:12 AM
"Got any reloading tips? "

I don't shoot large volumes of hand gun ammo so a single stage press works well for me. I like the fact that I can visually confirm each step of the process as I move cases in my loading blocks.

I drop all powder into the prepared cases in the block, directly from my Redding measure. When they are all filled I take the critical last safety check: I eyeball every filled case under a strong light to confirm the powder colume is at the same height in each one.

That one check totally prevents any double charges, emptys or squibs.

Walkalong
November 24, 2008, 11:27 AM
It's my opinion 5.5gr W231 under a 230gr LRN bullet is one of the best handloads for the .45 Auto known to man.Hard to argue with that for an inexpensive, accurate, all around good .45 load. Shot it for years. 5.5 Grs W-231 and any 225 or 230 Gr lead bullet.

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