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.45 ACP SWC - Plated?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Doublehelix, Dec 2, 2017.

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  1. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    I have been working up some .45 ACP SWC loads this week, and I find that I absolutely *LOVE* the accuracy compared to the standard 230 gr. RN FMJ's that I have been shooting!!!

    I have been working up loads with the 200 gr. coated lead SWC bullets from Bayou Bullets:

    http://www.bayoubullets.net/45-acp-200-gr-swc-1000-ct/

    I love them, but I am still working out a reliable COAL for my 5" 1911. Much more accurate in my hands than the my 230 gr. FMJ RN bullets.

    I noticed however that Xtreme makes some *plated* 200 gr SWC bullets that might have some promise. Has anyone every used any of these and have any opinions on them?

    https://www.xtremebullets.com/45-200-SWC-p/xc45-200swc-b0500.htm

    I am wondering how the plated would shoot compared to the coated lead, and if they would be any easier to bring into battery (smoother feeding into the barrel?). I had a few of the coated bullets hang up when feeding, so I was planning on work up a load with a slightly shorter COAL until I saw these plated SWCs and though I would see what is up.

    I am also thinking less lead exposure with the plated vs. the coated lead.

    Any thoughts? Thanks!
     
  2. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I’ve shot both Berry 45 200 gr plated SWC and home powder coated SWC bullets in my Gold Cup and see little difference in accuracy or function between them.

    But, I have only shot a couple hundred or less of each in the gun. I’ve just about settled on a load but other projects have taken precedence recently.

    A note, if you are loading target loads with the SWC bullets, you may want to change the main recoil spring. My Gold Cup came with two main springs, one for ball ammunition (16 lb or so) and one for target (12 lb or so if I remember correctly).
     
  3. drband

    drband Member

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    Last edited: Dec 2, 2017
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  4. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    Thanks for the link, interesting read.

    I was loading to a COAL of 1.250, or just slightly longer. I had quite a few jams on my latest batch. I will look to measure the shoulder and see what I get. This latest batch might be slightly longer than my first batch, so I must be right on the ragged edge of what will cycle reliably in my gun as my first batch cycled perfectly without any issues.

    I am working with Bullseye and W231 by the way. I am trying to get a hold of some WST to try as well.

    Thanks again.
     
  5. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    Thanks for the information. Curious as to the lighter spring comments. Why would the lighter spring help here? How can I tell if I am having an issue that needs the lighter spring? Thanks.
     
  6. Captaingyro

    Captaingyro Member

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    I load those exact bullets. My OAL is 1.230, which is very close to drband's recommendation. At that OAL I get reliable feeding and good accuracy.

    You don't mention your load, but 5.2 grains of Universal gives me about 850 fps and cycles everything I've tried it in.
     
  7. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    I am going to try loading to 1.230" and see what I get. As I mentioned, the first batch I loaded about a week ago were slightly shorter and they fed perfectly, so I am thinking I was not careful enough to make sure they were at 1.250" or shorter.

    My loads are still being finalized, but so far my favs are:

    5.4 gr W231 - nice accuracy, and coming in at about 870 fps, which is cutting it pretty close to Major Power Factor at 171.
    6.0 gr. W231 - very, very accurate but a bit hot I think. They averaged at slightly north of 900 fps with a PF of 208+. Single hole though...

    5.0 gr. Bullseye - Once again, Great accuracy, velocity at about 894 fps which is just a bit hotter than I would like, but they were pretty nice.
    4.8 gr Bullseye - Velocity avg of 872, and great shooters.

    I am focusing on the lighter two loads from each, and then as soon as I pick up my WST, I will work up a favorite load for that, and then make a larger batch of all 3 loads, and spend some time with the chrony and finalize things.

    But now that I am thinking about trying the plated SWC's, I might have to start all over again! Ugh.
     
  8. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Bottom left is the Precision 200 Gr SWC Bottom right is the Berrys 185 Gr SWC.
    45 Crimps With O.A.L.'s Pic 1.JPG
     
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  9. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    Interesting, thanks for posting that comparison. The 185's look shorter for sure, which could be an advantage with my gun, although I love the way the 200 gr coated SWC's shoot now so much, I think I might try some of those in plated first and see how that goes. It is nice to know that there is a 185 gr alternative available in plated if the 200's don't work out. I see them in cast and coated cast, but those are the first 185's I have seen in plated.
     
  10. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    I think the lighter springs are for the very light loads. But you said you were trying for major.
    With lighter loads the slide may not make it all the way back to strip another cartridge from the magazine.

    A single, five shot, hole at nine hundred feet per second sounds just perfect to me. Or looks perfect. Or with Power Pistol would smell perfect too!
     
  11. frogfurr

    frogfurr Member

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    I am a big fan of 200 gr coated SWC also. These are the most accurate 45acp bullets I have tried. I have tried plated also and can't see any difference in the accuracy. My range load is 4.0 grs Bullseye and 200 gr coated SWC. Recoil is mild, accuracy is good, and is an economical load. This in a full sized steel framed 1911 with standard 16 pound springs.
     
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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  13. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    6 45 Reloads - 2.JPG
     
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  14. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    The bullseye crowd runs lower velocities with the 185-200 grain semi-wadcutters, 770-800 fps or so. The lighter bullet weight and lower velocities need a lighter recoil spring. If your recoil spring is too stiff, you will have function failures.

    The semi-wadcutter ammunition I've been working currently with chronographs at about 810 fps.

    If you have different objectives for your ammunition, the standard recoil spring may work just fine.

    Here is a link to Federal Gold Medal match 45 ACP ammunition for information.

    https://www.targetbarn.com/federal-...50-rounds-of-185-grain-fmj-semi-wadcutter.php
     
  15. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

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    I never bothered measuring OAL with a .45 SWC. I used the whole thumbnail thickness rule and load them up. I load both 185 and 200 gr with no issues. I also dont bother with coated or plated in a .45. My National Match will feed either with no issues. I am running them pretty slow and still am using the 16 lb spring. Same with the Springfield I had before the Colt.
    20150112_160252-1_resized (1) (2).jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2017
  16. frogfurr

    frogfurr Member

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    COL for both my 1911's is 1.250" with 200 gr SWC. Going shorter has caused me a lot more problems than going a little longer.
     
  17. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    I have not chronographed them, but my Taurus will function at four and one half grains of Power Pistol, while my Wesson Silverback will not. The Wesson is much youger than the Taurus though.
    I am sure the bullet would bouce off a man's t-shirt. With such a slow powder, I could nearly brush my arms off and collect enough unburt powder at the end of a session to load up a few more. I grew tiredof wearing tiny black dots on the way home and did not go lower. I am waiting to use up what I have of Power Pistol and Silhouette before I look for some Zip.
    The groups were not great, but at eight point eight grains....:)
     
  18. roval

    roval Member

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    i like the xtreme 200 swc. its very accurate in my 1911s with 4.9 gr bullseye. i couldnt' get it to feed at all in my sig227 (since traded) whereas the 200 swc pc mbc fed well.
     
  19. Captaingyro

    Captaingyro Member

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    I think it's important to remind new reloaders that with semi-wadcutters the portion of the bullet forward of the shoulder is just hanging there in empty space once the round is chamberd. The pistol really doesn't care about that portion of the bullet since it will never touch the rifling. Therefore, OAL is really only a reference measurement we use to set the seating die. The really critical dimension is how that shoulder interacts with the feed ramp and chamber. Semi-wadcutters from different manufacturers and molds will have a different amount of material in the truncated cone forward of the shoulder. So, to get reliable feeding, different OAL's will be required with different bullets. The really critical thing is to get that shoulder just peeking out of the case mouth.
     
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  20. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    OK, this makes sense for sure. I was confused as to why I would need lighter springs with SWC's and actually you are referring to the lighter loads. I want to make Major PF just to be safe in case I decide to shoot in a SS USPSA match (I currently shoot limited, but you never know).

    Thanks for the explanation, I wondered what I was missing.
     
  21. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Yea, Power Pistol is the wrong one for light loads.
     
  22. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Walkalong loads them longer than I do. I won a box of Black Hills SWCs which fed fine, better than the usual No 68 copy at 1.250". They are about 1.240" with more crimp than you see recommended on the internet. BH wants their ammo to work. I now load Valiant brand SWCs to 1.242" and they run reliably in most guns.

    I did not have good results from Rainier plated SWCs, either feeding or accuracy. I have not tried other brands.

    I have seen a head-to-shoulder measurement of .936" recommended, letting the OAL fall where it may. More precise than your thumbnail.

    You can tinker with SWC seating from the shoulder at the case mouth to as long as will "plunk" in the chamber or fit the magazine. If you don't get reliable feeding somewhere in there, it is time to try a different bullet or consult a gunsmith for "throating."

    I think you are better off with coated bullets than plated. The only plated bullets I shoot are 9mm and I only use them because I have one gun that feeds the rather pointed Xtreme shape better than BBI or Bayou coated.
     
  23. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Member

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    Great post, and this makes perfect sense once I hear you say it, it of course almost seems obvious now.

    The gun I have been using for testing is my Dan Wesson Silverback, and I definitely had some issues feeding the SWC's that I loaded at 1.250" (they were probably slightly longer unfortunately). These bullets were getting jammed during feeding, and a couple of times, I had a hard time racking the slide to get the stuck round out. (Felt like too long COAL issues I have seen in the past with other guns/loads).

    Most of these rounds would feed fine when I reloaded them and fired them.

    Here are some pictures of one of the rounds that would not feed that I saved for further analysis:

    pTZmvgO.jpg

    When measured, it comes in a bit long for sure:

    cyfMDdw.jpg

    Here is an image of the edge where you can see the shoulder of the cartridge, You can see where the coating has been scrapped off, and also can see how deep these are seated. I measured that shoulder at about .030, but it is hard to get an accurate measurement.

    0BhTEAa.jpg

    Suggestions based on this information?
     

    Attached Files:

  24. drband

    drband Member

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    Shoulder is seated too high in my opinion. Use your thumbnail to match. I bet that shoulder is way higher than your thumbnail.
     
  25. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    What is so sharp in your fire arm to gouge the nose like that? When mine were too long and jammed, the nose was pressed to the barrel hood, leaving a flat spot upon the corner of the nose.

    My Silverback has a very tight chamber. It needed substantial more crimp to get my handloads in it. Without it, they would not go to battery. And pulling them back out was an experience. I had several large bruises on my leg from the grip safty, since I was reluctant to pound a brand new pistol on the table to open it again.:fire:

    Now I load for the Silverback, the Taurus will eat anything.
     
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