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Which powder?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Monkeybear, Jan 3, 2008.

  1. Monkeybear

    Monkeybear Senior Member

    Jan 27, 2006

    So I am returning to reloading. Re-buying and re-reading all of my books again.

    I am scoping out all of my purchases so I can order up everything at once and I really want to minimize how many powders I own. I would actually like it if somehow I could end up using just one powder to start with although I know that is a long shot.

    I shoot for one reason, because I feel like it. I don't hunt or compete. I don't need SD or HD loads, just bullets that fly straight. I am still a bit of a new shooter so I don't need super accurate loads as I don't get much past 100 yards and thats on a good day. I don't mind it when they kick hard and I don't mind when they hardly kick at all. I just want some practice ammo that will make holes in paper. I will be able to buy small quantities of this powder and that powder to play around with later, but I would like to have a big keg of just one to get production going right away.

    I want to reload for these calibers listed in the order that I most need-

    .357 magnum
    .44 magnum
    45/70 govt
    .38 special
    .44 special

    So I have been looking at different loads but I was hoping that you guys might have a suggestion for me as to what powders might do a good job with most of those calibers. Don't worry I am still doing my homework, just looking for a little direction is all.

  2. Ifishsum

    Ifishsum Member

    Jun 21, 2005
    Portland, OR
    I'd suggest Unique (Alliant) would cover your handgun rounds very well, and IMR4895 for the rifle cartridges. Hard to find two more versatile powders IMO.
  3. Galil5.56

    Galil5.56 Senior Member

    Dec 20, 2007
    I have loaded all of the ones you mention but the 45/70 with Unique, and even it could be loaded lightly with Unique using cast bullets.

    For reasonably stout 357, 44 spec/44 mag, and 38 special loads, Unique or Herco would do well. shooting 30/30 ammo made with inexpensive cast bullets and gallery charges of Unique is a blast, and 100 yard hits are no problem. Same for 45/70 as mentioned. As you asked, I tried to use one powder for what you mention, but for jacketed bullets and more "normal" powered loads in the 30/30, or 45/70, a slower propellant would be needed.

    Good luck.
  4. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Senior Member

    Nov 25, 2006
    Northeast PA, USA
    IMR4198 will work well for both the 30-30 and the 45-70 Government. There are better powders for the 30-30 but you will still be happy with the results and IMR4198 works very well for the 45-70 Govt.

    I would suggest using W296/H110 for your .357 Magnum and .44 Magnum rounds. If you want to work up light Magnum rounds then I would use 2400 instead.

    For the .38 Special and .44 Special, W231/HP-38 will do a great job. If in the future you decide to reload 9mm, .45 Auto and .45 Colt, W231 will work well with those too.
  5. hawkeye1

    hawkeye1 Member

    Jul 11, 2007
    I sure like W231 for all my regular velocity pistol and revolver rounds. As for the 30-30 I use H4895 with cast bullets. Works like a champ.
  6. earplug

    earplug Senior Member

    Oct 9, 2006
    Colorado Springs
    You really need to check some reloading manuals or some commercial reloading web sights, such as Winchester/Hogdens.
    Your trying to reload two low velocity pistol round 38spl, 44 spl. two high velocity rounds 357 mag, 44 rem mag. And a old black powder rifle case 45/70 that can be loaded with smokless. You didn't mention what type of firearm your going to load it for?
    The 30/30 is a mid range power.
    So your looking at a possible four differant types of powder to optimize each cartridge.
    Figure out what you want the round to do. chose a bullet weight and type, cast lead, jacketed etc. Then start your home work on powder.

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