.45 ACP shooting 3"-4" high at 25 feet


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clongest
January 25, 2010, 04:42 PM
I inherited a .45 auto and reloading equipment. I'm having a lot of fun with it, but, of course, need some help. I have found this forum VERY informative. So . . . some more newby questions:
1 - can I just wipe cases before reloading or is tumbling preferred? (I'm just loading a few rounds at a time until I can find the right recipe.)
2 - What is the goal of cleaning before loading?
3 - I'm using 700x powder, 200 gr SWC and 230 gr RN lead bullets all probably 20-30 years old. Tried seating to 1.26" OAL and 1.22" OAL. Used the lowest charge listed at the online database (starts with an H). And it still shoots high. The online database lists 4.5 gr as the starting charge. The old Speer book I have lists 4.1 gr as the starting charge. I'm about to drop down to 4.1 gr and see what happens. Should lowering the charge result in lower impact point?
4 - When do I need to worry about the charge not being enough to get the lead out of the barrel?

Thanks a lot for any help. - Chuck

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rcmodel
January 25, 2010, 04:53 PM
Bore dwell time, and recoil determines how high or low a handgun shoots.

The slower the bullet is getting gone out of the barrel, the more time the gun has to recoil up before the bullet clears the muzzle.

Heavy bullets shoot higher then light bullets because they are slower, and they kick harder.

I would try upping the charge and see what happens.

Of course there is no free lunch.
A heavier charge will both increase recoil / decrease bore dwell time.
You have to see if one will more then cancel out the other.

BTW: Assuming you are asking about a 1911?
If you go to a lower charge weight, the gun will stop cycling semi-auto before lead bullets start sticking in the bore.

rc

bds
January 25, 2010, 05:08 PM
You can test if shooting high is due to load vs grip angle by shooting closer (say 3-5 yards) - If it is due to grip, you can try a flat back strap (or no back strap) to lower the point of aim.

243winxb
January 25, 2010, 05:19 PM
1 - can I just wipe cases before reloading or is tumbling preferred? (I'm just loading a few rounds at a time until I can find the right recipe.)
2 - What is the goal of cleaning before loading? Wipe with a clean cloth is OK for a few. Cleaning gets any dirt off the brass that can scratch dies. But with carbide dies, the brass is more likly to get scratched. Primer pockets can be cleand if you feel like it, not a must do. And it still shoots high. RC is correct , more powder works @ 25 yards. Start low, work up the powder charge.

RandyP
January 25, 2010, 05:26 PM
Perhaps a dumb question, but in the olden days I was taught (by the US Army pistol team) to hold a 6 o'clock sight picture for my 1911. Simple point of aim would result in a high hit.

What sight picture were you using for your test?

MichaelK
January 25, 2010, 06:57 PM
Hi Chuck
Yes, I have to repeat what the others have said. Increase velocity to lower your point of aim. I see this myself whenever I shoot .38 specials and .357s in the same shooting session.

About cleaning, I usually wash my cases in dish soap/vinegar solution. I stopped tumbling brass decades ago. Do you have carbide dies for your 45? If not, I definately recommend getting them, because you'll never have to lubricate a case ever again.

I wouldn't worry much about leading with a .45. At most, you'll be pushing the 200 grain bullet at about 1000 fps, and with good lube on the bullets you shouldn't get any leading at all. If any, it will come out with a tight fitting cotton patch. I particularly like to use Ed's Red bore cleaner for my cast bullet shooting sessions. It's easy to make it yourself. Here's a recipe for it.
http://www.handloads.com/articles/default.asp?id=9
Good luck,
Michael

clongest
January 25, 2010, 07:35 PM
RandyP -
Yes. M1911 A1. Father-in-law purchased it from NRA in about 1973 I think.
Shooting at a 7" paper plate. I set the bullseye (a cross in the center of the plate) just on top of the front sight. This results in the high point of impact. If I aim at the "6 o'clock" on the plate (which would be about 3-1/2" low) I hit center. But this is at 25'. Where do I aim if I'm at 35' or 40', etc.?

bds-
"You can test if shooting high is due to load vs grip angle by shooting closer (say 3-5 yards) "
If I stand close and it's still high that means . . . load or grip?

I'll need to mull this all over. . . So I want to increase the velocity to lower the point of impact? Someone said "to lower the point of aim".

Thanks a lot for all the quick responses, you guys. I really appreciate all your inputs.

bds
January 25, 2010, 08:02 PM
At our range, our match targets are set out at 5-25 yards and we do not change the point of aim (most caliber trajectory should be fairly flat at these distances).

I place my sights just at the base of my point of aim and FYI, most 1911 shooters at the match have replaced the back strap to flat ones based on their shot placements at closer distances.

clongest
January 26, 2010, 05:26 PM
You can test if shooting high is due to load vs grip angle by shooting closer (say 3-5 yards) - If it is due to grip, you can try a flat back strap (or no back strap) to lower the point of aim.

So if I shoot at 10 feet and I'm still hitting high, is my problem grip or load?

rcmodel
January 26, 2010, 05:43 PM
Arched or flat mainspring housing has no bearing at all on were the sights point.

The arched housing was developed to cure a problem with the 1911 pointing low when point shooting.

One or the other may be more to your liking depending on your hand size and trigger reach, but they do not change the sight settings when you swap one for the other.

Take a look at this problem solving target.
http://www.reloadbench.com/pdf/files/TargetRightHanded.pdf

For any 1911 to shoot noticeably high at 10 feet / 3.33 yards, I'd have to say it almost has to be you doing something too it when the hammer drops.

rc

SlamFire1
January 26, 2010, 05:57 PM
If playing with ammo, goofing around with grip tension and position does not change this, then you need a taller front sight.

Or a shorter rear sight.

Sometimes you just cannot compensate for mechanical misalignment.

Been there, done that. ;)

Mark whiz
January 26, 2010, 09:30 PM
For the record clongest:

with 700-X and 230gr jacketed or plated bullets - I use 5.2gr of 700-X at an OAL of 1.245. This is for my Springer 1911-A1 GI Model and it shoots point of aim and 2" groups at 15 yards.

clongest
January 30, 2010, 08:16 PM
Here are the results comparing 4 yds and 7 yds. (Disregard the hit out to the left at 4 yds.) The 4 yds hits are on the right plate. The plates are 7" in diameter. So does this indicate a problem with my grip or something else?

Thanks again for any and all input.

114491

SlamFire1
January 30, 2010, 09:59 PM
How high does it group at 25 yards?

The further you go out the aiming error and mechanical offset becomes real apparent.

Just keep on practicing and get those group sizes down.

James2
January 30, 2010, 10:55 PM
You can load without tumbling your brass. I did for many years. Just wipe them off with a cotton rag. A tumbler is nice if you want the loads to sparkle.

I would not decrease the load below the starting load in the manuals. I have found that the best load for my guns is usually about in the middle, or a little higher in the table. You will most likely need more powder under the lighter bullets to cycle the gun.

Hitting the bull is a matter of shooting enough to get a feeling of where the gun shoots with whatever load. Then adjust your sight picture to hit what you want to hit. You didn't say if the gun had adjustable sights. If it does you can adjust the sights. But you still have the same problem at different ranges. Actually up to 50 feet, distance should not make a big difference in sight picture. If you are shooting 25 yards then 50 yards, yes, you will notice the trajectory of the bullet changes the impact point in relation to sight picture.

In any case, shoot lots and enjoy the hobby.

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