If you had only one powder ?


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2bfree
October 17, 2012, 07:15 PM
If you had only one powder and had to load 9mm, 357 mag, and 45acp, what would it be ? Not looking for the best for each caliber, just what would be your choice if you only had one. My vote would be hp-38.

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ATLDave
October 17, 2012, 07:22 PM
For handgun loads, it seems like I can find load data for Unique for almost everything.

Swampman
October 17, 2012, 07:31 PM
Unique. Not the cleanest burning, but works well in just about any handgun caliber.

56hawk
October 17, 2012, 07:38 PM
Bullseye. The 357 ammo is going to be on the wimpy side, but otherwise it will work great in all three. Actually there really isn't going to be a powder that will give maximum power from the 357 and still work in the 9mm and 45ACP.

gpb
October 17, 2012, 07:39 PM
Unique works well in a lot of pistol cartridges.

It also can be used for cast bullets in many rifle shells, and in certain shotgun shells.

Overall Unique is a very versital powder that also performs very well.

If I could only have one powder for everything, I'd chose Unique.

44junkie
October 17, 2012, 07:54 PM
Power pistol is another good all around powder. I use it for everything from 9mm to .500 S&W.

GaryL
October 17, 2012, 07:56 PM
Unique. For the same reasons everyone else listed.

Wildbillz
October 17, 2012, 08:09 PM
Another vote for Unique. It will load most any of the pistol round I have.

WB

lil dragon
October 17, 2012, 08:12 PM
I'm a firm believer in 231.

BYJO4
October 17, 2012, 08:24 PM
Bullseye or Unique.

GLOOB
October 17, 2012, 08:29 PM
Close one. I like HP38, too. But I think I would go with Unique. For starters, it's a little cheaper. It would give better case fill on 357 and 45ACP. And it can go mild to wild on the semiauto calibers with a little more top end range than HP38.

It also can be used for cast bullets in many rifle shells, and in certain shotgun shells. Yeah, there's loads of unique data for Unique. It could be just because it's been around so long and caught on early. But I think the bulk and ease of ignition are probably good attributes in this regard.

James2
October 17, 2012, 08:31 PM
Unique.

oneounceload
October 17, 2012, 09:32 PM
Universal Clays - as close to Unique as Unique, without the dirty burn

4895
October 17, 2012, 09:35 PM
Winchester 231 is the powder

JLDickmon
October 17, 2012, 09:36 PM
Unique

ljnowell
October 17, 2012, 09:40 PM
AA2 or AA5. Plenty of load data for both. They also meter very well.

Walkalong
October 17, 2012, 09:48 PM
W-231, AA #5, or Unique, if I just have to stick with one, but I won't. :)

472x1A/B
October 17, 2012, 10:10 PM
Truly only one? Unique, by the 8# keg.

ljnowell
October 17, 2012, 10:12 PM
W-231, AA #5, or Unique, if I just have to stick with one, but I won't.

When I bought my first handgun I bought a certain gun because it "would cover all the bases and I wont need another." Yeah right. Then when I got into reloading I bought a certain powder "because it works in everything and I eont need another." Now I have a ton of powders. Making the best ammo became more important than just makin any ammo.

Kachok
October 17, 2012, 10:18 PM
I don't load 357, but for 9mm, 40, 44mag and 45 ACP Longshot is the speed king, especially with heavier bullets. Second place would have to go to Blue Dot or Unique.

hAkron
October 17, 2012, 10:19 PM
I like HP-38 (aka Win-231) in nearly everything.

ColtPythonElite
October 17, 2012, 10:25 PM
Unique

rsrocket1
October 17, 2012, 10:26 PM
Unique or Bullseye.
Keep the pressures up if you don't want blowback, sooty cases and unburned flakes.
Bullseye is a little more smokey/sooty, but about 20% more economical at full power loads than Unique.

Hodgdon Clays is the best powder for light target loads. Builds up pressure fast without building up muzzle velocity. Trail Boss is OK, but costs much more and you may not get enough recoil to cycle autoloaders.

Eb1
October 17, 2012, 10:30 PM
I'd say Unique from experience, but I am really itching to try HP-38/Win231.

I have heard nothing but good things about the HP-38/Win231.

horsemen61
October 17, 2012, 10:47 PM
win 231

chris in va
October 17, 2012, 10:51 PM
Universal. Smaller flakes and cleaner than Unique.

jim243
October 17, 2012, 11:07 PM
Win 231 or H38 same powder.

Jim

beatledog7
October 17, 2012, 11:15 PM
Bullseye, then W231.

Slasher
October 17, 2012, 11:54 PM
231

Sent from my EVO using Tapatalk 2

RandyP
October 18, 2012, 12:15 AM
In fact I DO only have one powder - Win 231/HP-38 - I use it for the 4 different calibers I presently reload.

bigdogpete
October 18, 2012, 12:28 AM
unique

b money
October 18, 2012, 12:52 AM
unique. As someone else stated I am just starting to get into the perfect ammo not just any ammo. so my experience with numerous powders is somewhat limited but so far unique has performed great in every caliber I've loaded

ArchAngelCD
October 18, 2012, 01:14 AM
For me it would be W231 (HP-38). It's the only handgun powder I buy 8 lbs at a time.

Unique has been around for a lot longer so many will tell you Unique and they wouldn't be wrong. Universal is the Hodgdon clone for Unique and will work just as well but it meters better and it's cleaner burning.

Back in the Elmer Keith days the original "Powder Trinity" was Bullseye, Unique and 2400 and you can load any handgun caliber very well with those 3 powders and some rifle calibers too.

My "Powder Trinity" is a little different. Instead of using Hercules powders I like Winchester powders. W231 (HP-38), W540 (HS-6) and W296 (H110) are the 3 powders I use most and I can load any handgun caliber very well with those 3.

IMO, W231(HP-38), AA#5, Unique, Universal and probably True Blue can all fill the "only 1 powder" slot quite well. I'm sure a similar burn rate VihtaVuori powder will also fill the bill, I just don't know enough about their powders to name it. (yes I could use the chart but I don't like making recommendations without first hand knowledge)

oldreloader
October 18, 2012, 02:25 AM
I use HP38,Bullseye, and AA#5 either one would work.

918v
October 18, 2012, 03:42 AM
Bullseye... cuz it has other uses.

joneb
October 18, 2012, 04:27 AM
For my needs a minimum of two or three powders are required for my handguns.
Trying the one size fits all approach would leave me with crappy reloads. I reload to shoot ammunition I enjoy to shoot, at less cost and better accuracy than most factory ammo.

I once had a fly/spin cast fishing rod, it did both poorly.

VINTAGE-SLOTCARS
October 18, 2012, 05:14 AM
Unique for last 30+ years

elano
October 18, 2012, 05:49 AM
Bullseye. I actually used some in 357 at around 6.5 grains with a 158g lswc. They were no slouch!!! They felt hotter than the equivalent unique and cleaner burning IMO. Not quite as hot as 7.5g unique with 158g jacketed but close, I would call it a medium or moderate magnum load. Also use it in 9mm and 38.

floydster
October 18, 2012, 10:10 AM
Bullseye first, 231 second.

Smokeyloads

dragon813gt
October 18, 2012, 10:43 AM
Won't do it because one is a magnum. I use W231 for all my pistol loads except magnums. For that I use H110. I can't shoot powder puff loads out of magnums :(


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squarles67
October 18, 2012, 10:58 AM
W231 / HP-38 if I could have only one

The Bushmaster
October 18, 2012, 10:59 AM
I don't have to pick just one powder in this day and age and I don't. But...If I must...W-231.

HP-38 and W-231 are NOT the same. Many of my load manuals prove it.

USSR
October 18, 2012, 11:14 AM
Definitely Unique, although I have a .45ACP instead of a 9mm, and don't know how Unique performs in a 9mm.

Don

Certaindeaf
October 18, 2012, 11:49 AM
Easy, Red Dot.

dragon813gt
October 18, 2012, 11:49 AM
HP-38 and W-231 are NOT the same. Many of my load manuals prove it.

Your manuals are most likely old. The older data is indeed different. W231/HP-38 have been the same for years. They come from the same hopper in the same manufacturing plant. The only difference is the labeling. You pay a premium for the Winchester name. The powder manufacturer has addressed this issue already.




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The Bushmaster
October 18, 2012, 12:08 PM
Lyman's 48th Edition is old?

James2
October 18, 2012, 12:32 PM
Lyman's 49th come out in 2008. I don't know when the 48th came out.

Yes, with each edition things change. I don't know if that means the powders change or if it is testing or liability issues that bring about the changes. I suspect the later. In any event, we probably would be wise to use current data. I know manuals are expensive and I don't buy a new one that often, but look for data online from bullet and powder manufacturers.

David E
October 18, 2012, 12:47 PM
HP-38 and W-231 are NOT the same.

Except that they are.

Kyle M.
October 18, 2012, 12:52 PM
Your manuals are most likely old. The older data is indeed different. W231/HP-38 have been the same for years. They come from the same hopper in the same manufacturing plant. The only difference is the labeling. You pay a premium for the Winchester name. The powder manufacturer has addressed this issue already.




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Actually I pay exactly the same every 1lb. container of powder in my lgs regardless of what it is is $21.99, 4lb. containers are $59.99, and 8lb. containers are $119.99. I'm guessing that they get a price break because they order so much I'll bet they have 10 containers of each size of each powder on the shelves at all times, and who knowd how much they've got in the back.

918v
October 18, 2012, 01:40 PM
Except that they are.

Looking at all the data, 231 and 231 are not the same.

SKLFCO
October 18, 2012, 01:56 PM
Unique.

rcmodel
October 18, 2012, 02:11 PM
Years ago, HP38 and W231 were two different powders, manufactured by two different companies.

Currently, all HP38 & W231 is manufactured by St. Marks powder company in Florida, and packaged and distributed by Hodgdon.

So, today, it is the exact same powder, coming out of the same shipping containers.

And that is reflected by identical reloading data for both from Hodgdon in recent manuals and on the web.

The same is true of these:
HS-6 = W540
HS-7 = W571
H110 = W296


rc

Sudden Impact
October 18, 2012, 05:03 PM
Don't even have to think twice...W231 all the way!

glockky
October 18, 2012, 05:12 PM
I would have to say power pistol with unique being a close second. I say power pistol because you can get top velocitys out of the 9mm and 45, and it will get a 357 moving pretty good.

scythefwd
October 18, 2012, 05:13 PM
Another vote for Unique or Universal. Im curious about universal.. I keep hearing it meters better, but unique meters perfectly out of my PM (literlly 100 out of 100 perfect throws).

zxcvbob
October 18, 2012, 05:18 PM
Bullseye, Unique, or Herco. It would be tough to choose one over the other.

.357 in the line-up stacks the deck towards Herco, but max loads of the others will work too.

cheeze
October 18, 2012, 11:00 PM
I've become a fan of HS-6 lately, and it works in all the calibers mentioned. It burns clean too.

CZ57
October 18, 2012, 11:14 PM
In the calibers you mentioned and then some, Ramshot True Blue it will do anything the other powders mentioned will do with equal or better performance. It meters exceptionally well because it is a dense fine grained ball powder which may very well contribute to the low standard deviations you can expect to get. ;)

Jurist
October 18, 2012, 11:23 PM
I have to say UNIQUE.I use it in my 380ACP.9mm Luger,357 mag and 40S&W.Enough said.

Swampman
October 19, 2012, 03:32 AM
Are HP38 and W231 the same?
Rather than arguing, go to the source.
If anyone would know, it's Hodgdon, they market Hodgdon and Winchester powders (along with IMR).
Look at their online data, charge weights, velocities and pressures are all identical.
Don't take our word for it, go look for yourself.

http://data.hodgdon.com/main_menu.asp

Nappers
October 20, 2012, 12:42 AM
Unique. It's dirty but I clean my gun anyway.

RandyP
October 20, 2012, 01:18 PM
When I started reloading a few years back I decided that one possibile way of finding out if HP-38/Win 231 was the same was to e-mail directly to Hodgdon.

One of their techs was kind enough to reply that as has been stated.....and stated....and stated....and stated - LOL- YES! - they are the same powder and any published load for one will work for the other.

There are a few Win/HP combination pairs that are the same, I just can't locate my list. HP-38/Win 231 is the only powder I use for 4 calibers.

Peter M. Eick
October 20, 2012, 06:23 PM
Unique for me. Not the best, but it can work in everything from 380 auto up to 357 Maximum.

Shimitup
October 20, 2012, 10:54 PM
Unique is not my favored powder however it does seem to propel just about anything and do it reasonably well at even near the ends of its useful spectrum.

777TRUTH
October 21, 2012, 07:58 AM
For me it would be HP-38 or AA #5

45lcshooter
October 21, 2012, 08:06 AM
+1 for Unique with Power Pistol next. 9mm, 38/357, 45LC love that stuff!

dgod
October 22, 2012, 10:43 AM
Bluedot, 1 size fits all, I load 9mm, 357, 45ACP, 5.56, 7.62X39, 30-30, 243, 308, 45LC, having said that, I prefer to use IMR4064 for the 5.56 and 7.63X39, but Bluedot in the rest, and Bluedot will work fine even in these.

Dan

Snag
October 22, 2012, 10:50 AM
N340.

Kyle M.
October 22, 2012, 12:57 PM
W231 for handguns or imr4895 for rifles.

Ala Dan
October 22, 2012, 05:27 PM
Hodgdon's

Universal Clays~! without a doubt~!

Zeke/PA
October 22, 2012, 07:51 PM
Unique,Unique,Unique,Unique!!

davestarbuck
October 23, 2012, 12:18 AM
Ramshot Silouette!

Similar to Unique in burn rate but very clean and low flash.

Works well in +P loadings for 9mm and 38 special, he'll I've even used it in 9x25 Dillon!

jwrowland77
October 23, 2012, 08:27 AM
Unique by far. I'm loading 9mm and .380 and about to start .357 mag. Great all around powder.

BeJaRa
October 23, 2012, 11:31 AM
Unique, and as long as you keep your pressures off of the low end in 45acp it will burn pretty clean too.

Elkins45
October 23, 2012, 12:09 PM
Unique. There's a reason for the name.

Oh, and it haas been widely reported for years that HP-38 and 231 are the same powder. The differences in the loading manuals are part of the same variability of gun/production lot/human operator that causes different manuals to show wildly different max loads for the same powders. That's especially true of some of the older manuals where the testing was so highly dependent on 'eyeball' pressure readings and less on objective transducer data.

elwoodm
October 24, 2012, 09:34 PM
the first powder i used was W231 to load for 45 auto will always have this on hand it works in 5 of the 6 hand guns i load for and the 1 it don't is 44 mag but it might you never know. good all around powder.

bds
October 25, 2012, 12:06 AM
HP-38 and W-231 are NOT the same. Many of my load manuals prove it.
Your manuals are most likely old. The older data is indeed different. W231/HP-38 have been the same for years.
Lyman's 48th Edition is old?
Lyman's 49th come out in 2008. I don't know when the 48th came out.
Years ago, HP38 and W231 were two different powders, manufactured by two different companies.

Currently, all HP38 & W231 is manufactured by St. Marks powder company in Florida, and packaged and distributed by Hodgdon.

So, today, it is the exact same powder, coming out of the same shipping containers.
My Lyman #49 still shows different powder charges for W231/HP-38 but my guess is that the average chamber pressure data may not be recent as Hodgdon and Winchester load data have been the same since 2006 (see below 2006 load data).

This is from Hodgdon's company history page - http://www.hodgdon.com/history.html
In March 2006, Hodgdon Powder Company and Winchester® Ammunition announced that Winchester® branded reloading powders would be licensed to Hodgdon. Winchester smokeless propellants, the choice of loading professionals, are available to the handloader to duplicate the factory performance of loads from handgun to rifle and shotgun.
My guess is that after 2006, W231 and HP-38 became the same as indicated by 2006 Winchester and Hodgdon load data as the two load data already show exactly the same barrel lengths, cases, primers, OALs, powder charges, velocities and CUP/PSI - http://www.castpics.net/LoadData/Freebies/default.html

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=173844&stc=1&d=1351134345

sirsloop
October 25, 2012, 08:39 AM
I'd use H110 and throw my 9mm and .45ACP dies out lol. Ok. If I had to use one for all it would be Unique.

wlewisiii
October 25, 2012, 05:03 PM
This should have been a poll :D Another vote for Unique.

PO2Hammer
October 25, 2012, 05:57 PM
Universal. Mid range .357 loads and full power .45 auto.

Lunie
October 25, 2012, 06:35 PM
One powder? Black.

The question is answered. It's time to close the thread, pack up our gear, and go home, right?

(Ok, fine... If for some reason it needs to be a smokeless powder, then Bullseye. Or Blue Dot.)

TheCracker
October 26, 2012, 01:31 AM
Universal Clays - as close to Unique as Unique, without the dirty burn

Agree, it also meters better

zxcvbob
October 26, 2012, 01:37 AM
Universal is cleaner and meters better, but real Unique works better at the top end, and any weight variations from the powder measure don't seem to make much difference.

biogenic
October 26, 2012, 02:25 AM
W231/hp38

zxcvbob
October 26, 2012, 02:46 AM
WSF would be a good one for those three if you're OK with loading the .357 without any published load data. (it's such a great powder, i don't know why Hodgdon doesn't promote it more.)

Searcher4851
October 26, 2012, 04:03 PM
I haven't used a lot of the other powders mentioned so far, but Unique has been sevring me well for a number of years.

ForneyRider
November 16, 2012, 05:35 AM
Power Pistol - because you said 357 and not 38 spl.

W231 - If you said 38 spl and not 357 mag. But you didn't, you said 357 mag.

Fatelvis
November 16, 2012, 06:38 AM
Unique

accrhodes
November 16, 2012, 08:01 AM
Unique as well

Searcher4851
November 16, 2012, 03:55 PM
I'd probably have to go with Unique as well, simply because there seems to be more load data for it in so many different pistol calibers. It's not really a star in many calibers, but it'll get the job done in almost any.

TheCracker
November 16, 2012, 07:03 PM
Universal Clays - as close to Unique as Unique, without the dirty burn

Agreed! It also meters better.

Steve2md
November 17, 2012, 12:42 AM
Bullseye or power pistol for me

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