Who Do You Check First For Reloading Data?


June 25, 2012, 01:30 AM
Do you check with the bullet or the powder manufacturer? I am trying to work up a 243 Win. load using Nosler 100 gr Partition bullets using Hodgdon's H380. I went to Nosler's web site and found the start load listed at 36 grs with a max of 40 grs. I loaded up 5 rounds each starting at 36 grs up to 39 grs in 5 gr increments. While checking for another load using Varget on Hodgdon's web site I noticed they had H380 listed with a starting load of 34 grs. with a max of 36 grs. Granted, the bullet listed on Hodgdon's web site is a different bullet than what I am loading, but still should there be that big of a difference in powder weights for different 100 gr. bullets? So, would you recommend pulling these bullets and use the Hodgdon's data or try the Nosler data?

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T Bran
June 25, 2012, 01:45 AM
The weight of the bullet is only part of the equation they also have to take other things into consideration such as the ammount of bearing surface. If you have data for the exact bullet from the manufacturer I would consider it to be better data than some mystery bullet of the same weight.

June 25, 2012, 08:21 AM
I bet the Hodgdon data was for a all brass bullet.

June 25, 2012, 09:33 AM
I check several sources when starting up a new bullet/powder load.

Since different data references rarely agree, I like to see what the range of variance is.

June 25, 2012, 09:43 AM
Data from the bullet manufacturer for the specific bullet is what I check first. Then I cross reference that with every other manual I have.

June 25, 2012, 10:31 AM
I go to my Lyman manual first. Then I will check the powder vendor's data.

I don't start at max, I work my way up at the range using a chronograph to see what is going on.

I also shoot factory ammunition as a reference. I believe that if my loads are going faster than factory, then my pressures are higher than factory.

Differences between bullets become critical at max loads. Max loads will cause problems with changes of temperature, primers, cases, bullets. Max loads are risky because they will cause problems given the slightest change.

It is better to back off max.

June 25, 2012, 12:08 PM
I also shoot factory ammunition as a reference. I believe that if my loads are going faster than factory, then my pressures are higher than factory.


I do this as well. It can be eye opening at times.

June 25, 2012, 01:13 PM
I check the powder manufacturers website first.

June 25, 2012, 01:26 PM
I like to check bullet manufacturer first. If I can't find data then I go to powder manufacturer data.

June 25, 2012, 01:32 PM
I agree. Check the bullet maker FIRST, then the powder maker for more info. Not all bullets are the same, different lengths, different hardnesses, different bearing surfaces, so on and so forth, even for the same weight.

There is no truth of which I am afraid. - Thomas Jefferson

June 25, 2012, 02:09 PM
First stop for me is Lyman 49th to get in the ballpark and see what loads they have tested, then bullet and powder websites. If it's a bullet I've loaded before, my log first, then Lyman, then the Internet.

Every load I do is corroborated by at least two and usually three sources.

June 25, 2012, 02:12 PM
Powder maker first - they do the pressure testing with the proper equipment - if iot goes KABOOM, THEY are getting sued

June 25, 2012, 02:24 PM
Bullet maker first.

To many magic bullet designs today like secant ogive, solid copper, partition, A-Frame, etc.

Load data is different for them then conventional bullets.


June 25, 2012, 02:33 PM
I use bullet makers manual 1st. I will then check the powder manufacture web site.

June 25, 2012, 03:56 PM
Bullet manufacturer
Powder manufacturer
Lyman 48 or 49

Between the three of them I can usually figure out a range I'm comfortable working in.

June 25, 2012, 05:39 PM
I always start with the bullet makers load book.

I don't know if it matters that much to use the specific data listed, but I prefer to follow their recipes so I have a "baseline" to compare against other components later.

If I have a no-name bullet then I use the Hodgdon Online load data for reference along with other hard copy load manuals.

June 25, 2012, 10:44 PM
Lyman's first then powder company 2nd. I like to compare the 2

June 25, 2012, 11:43 PM
Bullet manufacturer first, powder manufacturer second closely followed by Lyman manuals.

June 26, 2012, 01:26 PM
I have the latest Nosler manual so that is the data I would use; however, I'd also cross reference with the latest Sierra, Speer, Hornady and Lyman manuals. While I may look at Hodgdon's data, it's doubtful that I'd choose it over Nosler's data.

Flatbush Harry
June 26, 2012, 03:58 PM
I look to powder manufacturer first to determine starting and max loads first. Next, I look to the bullet manufacturer's data for accuracy recommendations first and limits second. Finally, I check Lyman's manual for a cross-check. I have also used 6mmBR site for notes on accuracy, pressures and other notes.


June 27, 2012, 07:53 AM
I like to come here and just post a question. Usually I just run with the first numbers someone else posts. I've only blown up two guns so I can't be doing too bad. :)

June 27, 2012, 09:48 AM
Since most of my powder is Hodgdon I check their loading data on their website. Then it gets logged in my little green book and if the shooting results are fine then I just go back to my green book every time.

June 27, 2012, 01:21 PM

June 27, 2012, 05:43 PM
I have several reloading books but find that since I have a computer next to my reloading bench it is just as quick to check loads on line. Besides, most of my books are getting so old that several of the newer powders I'm using now aren't even listed.

BTW, found these loads weren't that hot up to 38 grs. I still need to try the 38.5 and 39 grs, but right now this load isn't looking too promising in this particular gun. I tried some Sierra 100 gr. Game Kings using H414 and the first group I tried gave me a 4 shot group at less than an inch. I might just try the Nosler's in another gun since the best group I've had so far with H380 was about 4 inches.

June 27, 2012, 08:30 PM
If loading Hornady bullets, I go to the Hornady manual first, then compare to Lyman 49th edition. For other bullets I go to Lyman first.

June 28, 2012, 02:09 PM
I would try a different powder before giving up on the Nosler partition just yet. H380 is a usable powder but not what I would call an ideal powder for 243 Win. I would at least try something with the numbers 4350 or 4831 before switching bullets.

June 28, 2012, 02:35 PM
I will agree with that

June 28, 2012, 03:07 PM
For true. I've been around the block a couple three times and do decree that one must know his individual business, but when the rc speaks, there you goes simple as simon.

June 28, 2012, 03:45 PM
I have a couple of 788's in 243 that I will try with these Nosler Partitions. Nothing against the Nosler Partitions, just I have tried about a dozen different bullets (including commercial) in this particular gun and the Game Kings are the first reloads to show any promise in this gun since I bought it over a year ago (this was a gun I sent back to Remington and they sent back a target with a 3-shot group of 1 1/4" and told me it was good to go). I was getting 4" to 8" groups with some of the H380 loads and with the cost of these bullets I'm not willing to waste any more in this gun.

June 28, 2012, 04:53 PM

June 28, 2012, 10:27 PM
Generally, Here.

I get all the good ideas, and the bad- then I hit the loadbooks.

Usually Hodgdons, as its all online and can be quickly referenced with whats here...then Alliant, to find yet another load that Unique works well in. Rarely disappointed on that one.

Then, sometimes I'll hit the speer book, as i tend to use a lot of speer bullets.

Wash it all together, then come here with what I wanna try.

Wait for the himming and hawing... discuss... ad nauseum..... It usually breaks down into a few categories each time :

- that load looks good, I shoot something similar
- you might get better results with my pet load " xxxx"
- Try a slightly different length, or grain less or more
- that load is so weak, it won't even cut paper
- **** you Newb, that load will blow up not only your gun, but your neighbors house, your wifes skivvies, and take us all into a hellish supernova of destruction!

Then I squish 'em and shoot 'em.

June 28, 2012, 10:52 PM
I like those single caliber load books. You can cross reference several powder and bullet makers data all together. I have most of the major manuals but those single caliber books are very handy.

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June 29, 2012, 01:03 AM
I usually check the bullet manufacturers dope first. Sometimes I don't have the exact bullet listed in any of my books, so I will look online at the powder manufacturers info and in my books for a similar bullet. I then choose a load that is on the low end of the info I have looked at and carefully work up a load. Info on a 150 gr bullet, for instance, can vary considerably from source to source.

June 29, 2012, 08:23 AM
I use Berry's plated bullets with W231 powder. so I go to data.hodgdon.com. Berry's doesn't provide their own load data, just a guideline to use "hard cast load data or start with low to mid-range jacketed data."

Hodgdon's data seems pretty complete; they had load data for the exact Berrys bullet I'm shooting.

Peter M. Eick
July 1, 2012, 11:30 AM
I go to the bullet maker first as most have said.

After that it depends. I try to go to a similar constructed bullet and then to the powder manufacturers. At worst case i just go to quickload and work it up myself. Finally if nothing is working out, I just search my handloader DVD's.

My rule is to get at least 2 independent and consistent checks on data before I test it out.

Also, I assume all load data provided on the internet is suspect till independently verified. Trust no one, including the powder companies. Remember mistakes happen.

July 1, 2012, 07:07 PM
Bullet Manufacturer, Powder Manufacturer, Every Manual I Have.

It's that order every time. I shoot Hornady bullets almost exclusively so that's my most referenced manual. For cast bullets it's an average of a few sources since I don't use Lyman molds.

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July 3, 2012, 12:33 AM
What I do is go to the Loadbook, check the powder mfg site, check the Lee book (which is mostly republished data), check the Lyman book and finally check the book Propellant Profiles for the powder I'm using. I make a table showing grains, FPS, OAL and bullet model (if given). I usually lean toward the bullet mfg data if the OALs are all over the map. In most cases, data from all the sources will be very close. You will also see in some of the data its indicated whats the most accurate load (Lyman does this as do a couple of the bullet OEMs).

July 3, 2012, 12:55 PM
I check as many sources as I possibly can with the most reputable being the bullet mfg and powder. I also do not start at the min or max charge but about the middle.

Kevin Rohrer
July 5, 2012, 01:00 AM
Lyman #49 first, then the bullet manfacturer's manual second.

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