Best Powder for Lee Pro Auto Disk


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Triumph
February 21, 2013, 02:30 PM
Is there a powder that is recommended for the Lee Pro Auto Disk Measure. I assume some powders may work better with the disks.

I am loading 45 ACP & 9mm for starters.

Thanks

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1moa@500
February 21, 2013, 02:39 PM
I have used 231, unique, and power pistol for those two rounds and the pro powder measure was no issue.

BisleyBlackhawk45
February 21, 2013, 02:40 PM
I've never had issues with any of the Hodgdon "CLAYS" family....Universal Clays, Clays or International Clays. They seem to meter well and don't dam up.

ssyoumans
February 21, 2013, 03:07 PM
+1 on W231 (mild-midrange loads), Unique for mid-range up, and power pistol for pretty hot loads (usually with jacketed bullets for me).

W231 and PP meter fantastic, unique is reasonably well.

I mainly use Unique and W231 with MBC 230gr LRN Softballs.

WST works really well too.

DanTheFarmer
February 21, 2013, 03:38 PM
Hi,
Short answer: ball and small flake powders work very well, stick powders can work o.k. depending on your method, large flake/wafer powders not so much.

In the Lee Pro Auto Disk I've had good consistancy with any and all ball powders I've tried (H414, BL-C(2), AA#7, Hunter) and small flake powders (Bullseye and Power Pistol). The stick powders (IMR4064, H4350, RL19, etc) do well but have a tendancy to bridge. I tried Blue Dot (a large flake or wafer powder) and I did not like the results.

The stick powders I've tried are all rifle powders and since my method for rifles is to throw a light charge and trickle up to the desired weight any minor inconsistancies don't bother me here.

Also, in case you haven't read or experienced it before, the Lee Pro disk system can be very consistent with the right powders but it not necessarily accurate. My disks, and similar results are reported by many others, throw lighter charges than shown on the chart. Use the chart as a guide, find the disk that acutally throws the charge you want by double checking the thrown weight with a scale, and periodically check (every 5th or 10th is common) while reloading using the disk you've found works best.

Good Luck.

Dan

kingmt
February 21, 2013, 03:50 PM
Once on get it right I never look at it again. It never drifts. Bullseye & Red Dot work great also.

beeenbag
February 21, 2013, 04:03 PM
I use unique alot with my pro autodisk. I think it is great, it meters well and doesn't leak at all. W231 meters well also but does leak a little bit.

ATLDave
February 21, 2013, 05:21 PM
All the Accurate Arms and Western powders that I have tried work very, very well.

As others have said, I have found little relation between what the chart predicts a given disk apeture will throw and what actually gets thrown. When trying a new powder/weight, I'll do 8-12 test throws. If you have the measure mounted on a turret, make sure to cycle the turret through all 4 stations; just throwing without moving the thrower around will get you lighter charges than you'll actually see. Make a note of what aperture you actually use, and you won't have to do a bunch of test throws in the future.

higgite
February 21, 2013, 05:39 PM
I've used W231 and IMR 8208 XBR with good results.

SSN Vet
February 21, 2013, 05:41 PM
I borrowed the $500 lab scale at work (Acculab model V-123) just the other week. This scale is rated for .001 gram (equivalent to .015 grain) and displays grains to the nearest hundredth.

I was setting up my new load master for .45 acp and weighed several of the initial charges....

According to my notes, a.46 cc disk gives me 4.9 gr. of W231.... so I thew three consecutive charges on the scale and got exactly 4.93 grains on all three. I loaded up 300 rounds and checked approx. one every 50 rounds with none going outside of .05 grains.

So... yeah, I'd say the PAD like W231....

Later, I set up for 5.3 grains (published max load for 230 gr Jacketed) and had to use the adustable charge bar. Though all the charges were still within .1 grains, the spread was notably larger than with the disk.

So that's my story... and I'm stickin with it ;)

FWIW, I've loaded 230 gr. JHP to 5.5 gr. and they were no where near as hot as 200 gr. +P Remington factory ammo.

trixter
February 21, 2013, 06:30 PM
I would like to recommend Bullseye or Unique, for lead bullets. Never shot anything else.

Triumph
February 21, 2013, 08:42 PM
Hodgdon "CLAYS" family....Universal Clays, Clays or International Clays.
Any specific ones you like. I don't know anything about powder so I don't know which ones these would be.

W231 (mild-midrange loads), Unique for mid-range up
Is W231 a model number or brand name. Also, which Unique powder would I use?

(H414, BL-C(2), AA#7, Hunter)
Can you give me any detail on the brand names or model #s for these powders?

Hi,
Short answer: ball and small flake powders work very well,
Which of the above are ball vs. flake?

It sound like Unique is a good bet. Which Unique would I need?

12Bravo20
February 21, 2013, 09:13 PM
Universal works good for me with PAD. I reload 9mm Largo (124Gr RN), .40S&W (180Gr FN), and .45ACP (230Gr RN) using the .57 hole on the disk which according to the manual should throw 5.2Gr of powder. Mine throws 5.1Gr of powder all day long. I reload all the above using Berry's plated bullets.

Triumph
February 21, 2013, 09:17 PM
Universal works good for me with PAD. I reload 9mm Largo (124Gr RN), .40S&W (180Gr FN), and .45ACP (230Gr RN) using the .57 hole on the disk which according to the manual should throw 5.2Gr of powder. Mine throws 5.1Gr of powder all day long. I reload all the above using Berry's plated bullets.

Can you give me the exact Universal to buy?

mike.h
February 21, 2013, 09:37 PM
Bullseye is very accurate in both 45acp and 9mm. I have also started using WST for 45acp and WSF for 9mm.

DM.Logan
February 21, 2013, 10:28 PM
Is anyone else concerned that OP knows absolutely nothing about powders. OP you have to do some more research this is not something that you can just go out and buy a setup and crank out ammo. It can be very dangerous!! Not busting your balls just very concerned for your well being.

Triumph
February 21, 2013, 10:37 PM
Is anyone else concerned that OP knows absolutely nothing about powders. OP you have to do some more research this is not something that you can just go out and buy a setup and crank out ammo. It can be very dangerous!! Not busting your balls just very concerned for your well being.

Agree 100%. I don't know anything about powder. That's why I don't understand all the acronyms.

Thats why I'm asking. I have a separate thread started on reloading manuals and I will read them before starting.

Just looking for a good "starter" powder for the Lee Pro Auto Disk.

Heck - I've got plenty of time to read & ask questions since the Lee Classic Turret is on 4-5 weeks backorder.:)

Thanks Much

DM.Logan
February 21, 2013, 10:39 PM
Never mind just saw op post for manuals I feel much better!

Lennyjoe
February 21, 2013, 10:48 PM
Winchester 231 is my #1 powder for 230 grain FMJ's out of my lee auto disc. It's a great powder to start with for your .45 ACP.

12Bravo20
February 22, 2013, 12:42 AM
Triumph, I get Hodgdon Universal Clays powder. With plated bullets, it is recommended to either use lead bullet loading data or just the low/starting charge for metal jacketed bullets. All my loads are at the starting charge for metal jacketed except the 9mm Largo. Read all the reloading manuals you can and ask questions, it's better to be safe than sorry.

ljnowell
February 22, 2013, 12:49 AM
I like to use Accurate Arms powder in mine. AA#2 and AA#5 primarily. I cant bring myself to walk away from 2400, so I dont use AA#9, though its still pretty darned tempting. All of those powders work great in the Lee Auto Disk Pro.

Elkins45
February 22, 2013, 12:51 AM
Unique is a powder manufactured by Alliant. It is a flake powder, as are all of the popular Alliant pistol and shotgun powders. There is only one variety of Unique: it is a specific 'model' of powder.

All of the pistol powders manufactured by Winchester, Accurate or Hodgdon are spherical or 'ball' powders. This actually refers to the shapes of the powder grains, although some of them have the balls somewhat flattened to they somewhat resemble flakes. Winchester 231 is an example of this.

Ball powders generally flow very well through powder measures, although some of the faster burning ones with very small grains (like Accurate #9) can leak a bit from under the hopper of the Lee powder measure. Some of the flake powders don't flow quite so smoothly. One of the worst offenders is IMR 800-X. It's a flake powder that is used mostly for shotgun loads but can be used for pistols. It has very large flakes that can cause metering problems.

All of the Clays family are ball powders made by Hodgdon. That's all I know about them. With one exception, if a pistol powder wasn't on the market prior to the early 90's I haven't tried it. I don't have room in my life for any new powders until I use up more of the ones I already have.

ATLDave
February 22, 2013, 10:46 AM
Ball powders generally flow very well through powder measures, although some of the faster burning ones with very small grains (like Accurate #9) can leak a bit from under the hopper of the Lee powder measure.

Lots of great information in the above post, but AA#9 is a slow pistol powder, not a fast one. AA#2 is very small and fast.

holdencm9
February 22, 2013, 10:57 AM
Another vote for Win231/HP38.

I have been very impressed with the Pro Auto Disk. When I first got it, I thought, no way this thing drops consistently accurate charges. I had fits at first (due to static cling), but once I got that sorted out, it drops 5.1gr of W231 +/- 0.1gr all day long.

I even finally tried the pro auto disk with Varget and the double disk kit. For a powder that is notorious for not metering well, I was still getting my target drop +/- 0.2gr, which I think is good enough for the light .223 loads I was making.

Triumph
February 22, 2013, 11:07 AM
Winchester 231 is my #1 powder for 230 grain FMJ's out of my lee auto disc. It's a great powder to start with for your .45 ACP.


Have some W231 on availability notification with Natchez shooter supply.

Triumph
February 22, 2013, 11:09 AM
I cant bring myself to walk away from 2400, so I dont use AA#9, though its still pretty darned tempting.

What does this mean?

Triumph
February 22, 2013, 11:11 AM
Unique is a powder manufactured by Alliant. It is a flake powder, as are all of the popular Alliant pistol and shotgun powders. There is only one variety of Unique: it is a specific 'model' of powder.

All of the pistol powders manufactured by Winchester, Accurate or Hodgdon are spherical or 'ball' powders. This actually refers to the shapes of the powder grains, although some of them have the balls somewhat flattened to they somewhat resemble flakes. Winchester 231 is an example of this.

Ball powders generally flow very well through powder measures, although some of the faster burning ones with very small grains (like Accurate #9) can leak a bit from under the hopper of the Lee powder measure. Some of the flake powders don't flow quite so smoothly. One of the worst offenders is IMR 800-X. It's a flake powder that is used mostly for shotgun loads but can be used for pistols. It has very large flakes that can cause metering problems.

All of the Clays family are ball powders made by Hodgdon. That's all I know about them. With one exception, if a pistol powder wasn't on the market prior to the early 90's I haven't tried it. I don't have room in my life for any new powders until I use up more of the ones I already have.


THANK YOU!!!! Hard to make sense out of acronyms when I dont know anything about powder. Very helpful post. Thanks for stooping to my level and explaining!!

twice barrel
February 22, 2013, 05:33 PM
Hodgdon Universal.

boom boom
February 22, 2013, 06:26 PM
One thing that can cause the autodisk to throw a lighter charge than expected is that each can of powder can have a slightly different VMD--volume mass density. The values that Lee prints are approximate. See http://thefiringline.com/forums/archive/index.php?t-403901.html

You can also use a perfect powder measure set for a specific volume and then use that to calculate the powder vmd as called for in the Lee Autodisk instructions.

ljnowell
February 22, 2013, 06:29 PM
What does this mean

It means that AA#9 is a pretty tempting powder, but I like my Alliant 2400 too much to stray from it. 2400 and AA#9 fill the same niche for me, magnum handgun powder. Since I have been buying 2400 in 8lb jugs, I just cant see buying any AA#9

muletrain
March 10, 2013, 11:25 AM
new to reloading and have lee press with the auto powder disk, loading 223 with cfe223 powder. seams I am going to have to stack disk for the right called for charge of 26.gr, have you had any dealings with the stacking and am I heading in the right direction?

joecil
March 10, 2013, 11:52 AM
I've actually set up a triple stack system for rifle loads. I posted it here http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=701275

GT1
March 10, 2013, 11:54 AM
Yes, the double stack kit is easy to use. It is pretty easy to fine tune, also. Just remember if you are using two different sizes stacked up that the smaller one always goes on top.

Any ledges that powder can sit on are bad. Always make sure you are adjusted so the disk holes slide all the way so everything drops down into the funnel part of the measurer.

bds
March 10, 2013, 01:08 PM
You can also double stack the Adjustable Charge Bars (https://fsreloading.com/search.php?mode=search&page=1&keep_https=yes) by filing the slide tabs of one and it will give you more powder charge adjustment options (see yellow arrows in the picture below). You do still need to use the 2 double-disk risers (AD2493) (https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-hopper-riserea2req-ad2493.html) and 2 longer bolts (FD1471) (https://fsreloading.com/lee-precision-6-32x1-12-pn-hd-phi-fd1471.html) but you can order these from Lee Precision.

I metered up to around 47 grains of I4895/H4895/Varget and 48 grains of RL15 which are plenty for most popular .308 bullet weights and powder charges.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=181170&stc=1&d=1362931679

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=181171&stc=1&d=1362931679

Bad Andy
March 10, 2013, 05:45 PM
All the Accurate Arms and Western Powders pistol powder and Bullseye and Blue Dot have always worked very good for me. Stick rifle powders powders not so much.

If you have any problems with fine powders "leaking" use a fine file and lightly file the area of the top of the measure. Just tighten up the discs slightly.

1SOW
March 11, 2013, 03:30 AM
For pistols: Vihtavuori is A SMALL STICK POWDER. The lee Auto-disc system loads it as accurately as 231.
n320, n330 & n340 loads like a charm

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