Stumper: Alcan AL-8 load for .45 ACP?


February 27, 2010, 09:08 PM
I bought out a reloader who's retiring and as part of his stash I got 15# of Alcan AL-8 powder. It's old, but this guy swore by it as his go-to powder for .45ACP.

So, I'd like to try it for that. If it works, I won't need powder for about 37 years, probably.

Only problem is I can't find any reloading info for it. I've searched the web a ton trying to find this, and no dice, with the exception of Handloads.Com which has a single load for a 185gr bullet--but I have no subscription. I'd like to run it with 200gr lead or thereabouts.

Anybody have any ideas about where I might find this? I've struck out. I'm just looking for some starting loads that are reasonable. Maybe a really old manual?

PS: The guy told me he thought his load for it was XXX grains, but I'm not going on what may or may not be accurate memory.

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February 27, 2010, 09:53 PM

Read this link maybe it will give you a starting point, I have Speer #9 data for AL5 & AL7, but nothing for AL 8.

Jimmy K

February 27, 2010, 10:08 PM
AL 8 is listed for the 44 mag. in my old Speer. Looks to slow for the 45 acp.

Steve C
February 27, 2010, 10:47 PM
My Speer No 9 manuals description of AL8 is its a slow shotgun magnum shell powder that works well in magnum handgun cartridges. There is data listed using it in the .357 mag, .41 mag and the .44 mag but not in any of the .45's, even the Ruger only data.

Comparing the data to other powders that are still used, it looks to be close to Blue Dot. With equal bullet weights the AL8 loads are a couple 1/10ths grain less that the BD load. While there are loads using Blue Dot in the .45 acp however after trying it IMO its too slow for good .45 acp use. If you load for any of the magnums you can find data.

Doug b
February 28, 2010, 12:41 AM
Mongoose33 I have data for AL-8 in .45 Auto Rim with a 250gr.cast bullet if you are interested.

evan price
February 28, 2010, 09:24 AM
My Speer #8 shows AL-8 only for Magnum cartridges.

However, my mental comparisons of AL-8 loads in Speer #8 to stuff I load for with modern powders makes me think it is very close to Accurate #9. That's my seat-of-pants assessment, not a guarantee.
Not much help because none of my Accurate books show #9 loads for .45 auto.

It's probably not the best for .45 acp but it oculd be made to work I'm sure.

February 28, 2010, 07:35 PM
Thanks, guys--based on what the guy I bought the powder from told me, I had hopes. But my own searching plus what you have all indicated suggest I had better find a different use for it.

Wish I reloaded shotgun. Maybe I'll post it on Craigslist and see what I can get out of it. Maybe someone would give me $100 for it.

March 4, 2010, 07:34 PM
I found a guy (runs a gun shop, he's been reloading for 50 years) who, when I told him I'd been trying to find a load for .45 in Alcan AL-8, IMMEDIATELY said, right off the top of his head, "It's too slow for that."

Unbelievable. I told him, of course, that was more or less the consensus here.

He also said it had these unusual square-cut flakes in it, which of course it does.

I ended up selling it to the guy for $100. He'll make good use of it reloading shotshell. Then I turned around and used that $100 to buy an 8# jug of 748 from him.

I'm happy, and I made a new friend. And my gosh, this guy knows EVERYTHING it seems. There aren't enough hours in the day, days in the week, weeks in the year for me to pick this guy's brain.

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