Using surplus rifle powder for alternate uses?


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Shrinkmd
October 27, 2011, 11:20 PM
Has anyone ever thought about using the powder from surplus 8mm or 7.62x54R rifle rounds to reload pistol, shotgun, or other rifle rounds? I know this would be far from ideal, but what if you have some old surplus ammo lying around, but a shortage of powder for other calibers you need to load. One could imagine situations where a tin of Mosin ammo might not be that useful, but the 3 lb or so of powder might be needed for other reloading projects.

Just asking...

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snuffy
October 27, 2011, 11:50 PM
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Using surplus rifle powder for alternate uses?
Has anyone ever thought about using the powder from surplus 8mm or 7.62x54R rifle rounds to reload pistol, shotgun, or other rifle rounds? I know this would be far from ideal, but what if you have some old surplus ammo lying around, but a shortage of powder for other calibers you need to load. One could imagine situations where a tin of Mosin ammo might not be that useful, but the 3 lb or so of powder might be needed for other reloading projects.

Just asking...

Okay since you're just asking, NO! That shows a very poor understanding of powder burn rates and uses.

Rifle powder,(like that in the mosin 7.62X 54), is extremely slow burning, it wouldn't even ignite in a shotgun shell. It would burn poorly even in a magnum handgun.

If there were some easy, repeatable way to increase the burn rate-------- well forget that.:uhoh::eek:

Good thinking, but WRONG!

Kendal Black
October 28, 2011, 12:00 AM
This is a no go. You do not have data for the powder. That right there should tell you to put the kibosh on the idea.

rsrocket1
October 28, 2011, 12:16 AM
Using surplus rifle powder for alternate uses?

Yes, as fertilizer for your flower bed.

Fishslayer
October 28, 2011, 01:54 AM
If I need ammo so bad I'm looking at that spam can of x54R under my bench, then I'm grabbing my Mosin carbine and a can opener! :D

Like everyone else said... don't do it!

What kind of ammo? If it's 180gr M30 maybe we can work something out. ;)

fguffey
October 28, 2011, 06:35 AM
ShrinkMd, yes I have, 70 rounds of 8mm57 for $4.70. This ammo outran my 30/06 ammo, but, it was corrosive, the cases split, necks split, and it out ran my 30/06 and the primers were corrosive. to fix that I used 30/06 military cases I purchased at a flea market in Buck Horn NC, 1,400 cases for .01 cent each, $14.00 dollars. Because I am a fan of forming dies I formed 1,000 8mm57 cases from the 30/06 once fired military cases, then, ordered the Hornady cam lock bullet puller, I wore that thing out 4 times, it was like they had it more than I did or I spent more time waiting for parts than I did using it. Now I have the RCBS Colet type puller.

Anyhow, the Turkish ammo is hot, @*$ hot, I measured the powder in random cases, 49 grains, because this stuff out ran my 30/06 ammo I reduced the load by 4 grains, at 45 grains the reloaded ammo shot like Romanian ammo.

I have purchased 8 pound jugs of pull down powder from Patís Tumbler/reloading in Ohio, I just picked up 16 pounds of surplus powder last week, what is the difference between pull down powder, I pull it down, they pull it down.

http://www.turkmauser.com/ammo.aspx

At the time 8mm57 cases were expensive in the Remington green and orange box.

Cases were .01 cent each, each case had a 30 cal dirt dobber (black wasp) not ready to hatch, anyhow, the wife opened the garage one day and they left, like a black cloud and she was not happy.

Head space? When I form cases for a chamber I form them to fit the chamber, no fire forming required.

F. Guffey

Walkalong
October 28, 2011, 07:37 AM
For an experienced handloader, it could be used for some rifle calibers, but it is totally unsuitable for loading pistol or shotgun calibers.

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 08:10 AM
Give it a try. It depends on what is in them. I don't know much about surplus ammo but if it is less then 20gr in the cases then it would probably work in handgun if its over 30gr then it's so slow you can't get enough in most handgun cases to hurt yourself.

Most rifle powder is so slow if you get the bullet out of the barrel most of the powder will be unburnt & blowen down range.

JohnM
October 28, 2011, 08:17 AM
Give it a try. It dependson what is in them. I don't know much about surplus ammo

Huh? I hope you walk around with a big sign on your back saying " keep back 500 yards, I'm shooting with unknown powder"

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 08:54 AM
Huh? I hope you walk around with a big sign on your back saying " keep back 500 yards, I'm shooting with unknown powder"
That was kind of rud & uncalled for.

Just because you don't know what your doing doesn't mean you should make it sound like others don't.

JohnM
October 28, 2011, 09:19 AM
Just because you don't know what your doing doesn't mean you should make it sound like others don't.

Yeah, I'm just learning this stuff.
I didn't get started reloading till 1966.
I just got this habit of wanting to know about the powder I'm stuffing in a case I'm going to set off right in front of my face.

Walkalong
October 28, 2011, 09:25 AM
It simply will not work in pistol calibers, period. :)

USSR
October 28, 2011, 09:31 AM
It simply will not work in pistol calibers, period.

+1. And for shotshells, for that matter. However, there is no reason why surplus 8mm or 7.62x54R rifle powder could not be used to develop loads for similar rifle cartridges. I use surplus powder from .30-06 M2 ball rounds all the time.

Don

Taurus 617 CCW
October 28, 2011, 09:35 AM
I've found that surplus military powder makes a great fertilizer for potted plants. *Caution, don't use too much or it will kill the plant*

Shrinkmd
October 28, 2011, 09:50 AM
Thanks for the interesting replies. I'm certainly not planning on doing this, just wondering out loud. I guess people could use it for rifle powder only. It would be funny if the surplus rifle people came up with some load data for these powders.

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 10:05 AM
It's easy to learn. By looking at how much is in the case you can get a good idea of how fast it is then act like it is much faster then it is to start your testing. Stuck bullets are a easy fix. Work up easy until you know what your shooting.

I also shoot at the house until I know the powder I'm shooting. I then go to the range to pick up brass.

I believe you were stating your experance on reloading & I was talking about working a powder to get to kow it. Others call it the differance between reloading & handloading but this is another skill into its own.

A doctor is a very smart person but I wouldn't expect him to know all aspeects of the medical field or even how to replace brakes on his car.

If I didn't know how to do this I would have about 150+ lbs of usless powder I would be setting on.

I also load 30/06 for about 5 cents a round & my 8 year old can even handel this rifle with certin loads.

Mock if you must to fell better tho but that 500 feet might help protect my secret loads that are so cheep. ;)

Fishslayer
October 28, 2011, 10:17 AM
I also shoot at the house until I know the powder I'm shooting.

For the slightest instant I was :eek:!

Then I reallized that some people are fortunate enough to not have to drive 30 miles to shhot. :D

If I could just step outside & shoot I'd never be able to stash a single round. ;)


As for using milsurp stuff...

Might be information here.

http://castboolits.gunloads.com/forumdisplay.php?f=28

http://castboolits.gunloads.com/forumdisplay.php?f=27

http://castboolits.gunloads.com/forumdisplay.php?f=13

JohnM
October 28, 2011, 10:18 AM
People can do a lot of different things.
I try to be frugal, but I'll buy my powder for specific loads and I'm not about to spend my time messing around with some unknown surplus military powder.
I know a few who do.
Not me.

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 10:42 AM
I acually injoy it. If it was because I'm cheep(which I am) it isn't worth while. Several times I have taken a powder to the point it shows over pressure signs & it still has unburnt powder in the barrel.

jcwit
October 28, 2011, 10:54 AM
I buy and use surplus pull-down powder for both rifles and Pistols. However I purchase from known venders who sell a known product and give instructions as to what data to use, and never ever switch rifle for pistol or pistol for rifle.

Unknown powder that I've pulled myself uses? Fertilizer period.

snuffy
October 28, 2011, 11:05 AM
The question was "can it be used in handgun or shotguns". Again, no not ever.

The discussion then deviated to the use of that powder, or other bulk surplus rifle powder. About 15 years ago, I discovered surplus powder. Back then it was as cheAp as 6 bucks a pound! (cheep is the sound a baby chicken makes)!:neener: Suppliers of that surplus powder supply data to be used to load it. With the warning that the lot numbers are for reference only and the powder can and does vary from lot to lot in burn rate. But because you normally get it in 8 pound jugs, working a new load for each jug is well worth the trouble.

I've had great results with WC-844 which loads using H-335 data. I've used it in .223, .308, an even 30-06. Opps forgot my NEF 45/70 too. Also am using surplus IMR-4895, IMR-4759, WC-846, WC-814, and WC-820. The WC-814 is used like w-231,(pull-down from 45 acp), the WC-820 is used like AA#9.

Don't want to mess with it? Fine, it leaves more for the rest of us!:):D

8mmman
October 28, 2011, 11:09 AM
I use surplus pull-down powder for rifles and like you I purchase from known venders who sell a known product. I shoot a lot of WC860 and IMR7383 and a few others in my rifes and really enjoy it. Someting on the order of 68 pounds so far. I buy 32# at a time to lowder the haz mat fee's.

For the most part it's just fine for plinking loads and I've found in some shells it wonderful like the 6.5 Swedish Mausers.

Use it in 6.5, 7.7, 303, 8mm, 308 & 3006 and a few other bolt guns. DO not load it is gas guns like the M1..... it's to slow for their gas system.

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 11:45 AM
I use & really like 2 different rifle powders in handguns. I use one of them in shotgun also. I'm sure the other would work great in shotgun also but I havn't had it long enough to work a load for it.

I don't think I want to use the names even tho I don't think one can be found anymore but the statement never is wrong.

Like I said earlier if there is over 30gr in it then it is to slow.

Now fast powder normaly used in handguns is a whole different kind of fun.

Walkalong
October 28, 2011, 12:03 PM
I use & really like 2 different rifle powders in handguns.Nothing as slow as what is in that ammo. I'll betcha a cold drink on that one. :)

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 12:12 PM
Back to my first reply. I know nothing about surplus ammo. If it has over 30gr in it then it is way to slow. ;)

I'd still be glad to offer you a cold glass of pop tho.

I was just commenting on the never. If it is that slow he can't hurt himself with one. He might stick a bullet.

Cosmoline
October 28, 2011, 12:44 PM
IF you had the facilities to test the powder to determine precise characteristics, as is done with batches of ball powder at the factories, and IF you could confirm all the rounds were loaded with the same batch of ball powder, then you probably could utilize it. But otherwise it's a no-go. Guessing or approximating are horrible ideas when it comes to reloading with smokeless powders.

And yes stuck bullets can be a life-ending, limb-removing issue. They're not a minor annoyance. So if your Plan A involves having regularly stuck bullets, I suggest a Plan B. Otherwise you are rolling dice every time you pull the trigger, and I don't want to be anywhere near you.

If it is that slow he can't hurt himself with one. He might stick a bullet.

Slower burning doesn't mean weaker. And many handgun cartridges have ample capacity to, in theory, take a big enough charge of rifle powder to generate pressures beyond the pistol's ability to contain.

Walkalong
October 28, 2011, 02:23 PM
If it has over 30gr in it then it is way to slow.
Your magic number 30 might well be correct. I dunno, but I do know that powder suitable for 7.62X54R is too slow for pistol applications. I based my "it's not suitable" post on that understanding. I have some surplus powder from pulled Argentine .308 ammo that I would not hesitate to use for similar applications if need be. I know the caliber it came from as well as the average weight.

kingmt
October 28, 2011, 04:20 PM
Here is where the magic number 30 comes from. I know 28gr of 2400 builds about 55k of pressure in a 30/06 & I believe 54R is limited to 45k so if there is more then 30gr it must be much slower then 2400 so it would be hard to blow up a handgun using data for handguns.

If there is around 20gr then it is probably faster then 2400 & to be safe I would act like it was as fast as Bullseye even though 10gr of Bullseye would be pushing the limit. If there was as little as 10gr I would act like it was the fastest powder to ever be made & very careful with it.

This info should diffently have that warning placed on it but since I'm on my phone I can't copy & paste so read my signature.

You really need a good understanding of powder burn rates & cartridge pressures.

Walkalong
October 28, 2011, 05:12 PM
I do understand burn rates and pressures. I do not understand your post though.

The OP's question.Has anyone ever thought about using the powder from surplus 8mm or 7.62x54R rifle rounds to reload pistol, shotgun, or other rifle rounds?
I thought it was answered quite well.

The powder/s suitable for 7.62X54R are not suitable for pistol or shotgun calibers. An experienced reloader could reload some rifle calibers with it.

That is pretty cut and dry. :)

jcwit
October 28, 2011, 06:53 PM
Here we are talking about loading an unknown rifle powder, maybe even in a pistol caliber and I got chastised all over the place for comparing 4895 Hodgdon & 4895 IMR as being similar "only 4 steps apart on the burn rate chart".

Even possibly dumping in 10 grains in with a full lb of the other powder and mixing, heaven forbid.

I really believe folks are missing something. But what do I know, I'm old.

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