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.45 Colt bullet weight

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by JohnnyB, May 25, 2010.

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  1. JohnnyB

    JohnnyB Member

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    Hi,
    I'm trying to get some feelers out there over whether to use a hard cast 200gr LRNFP bullet or a 250 gr Hard cast LRNFP for my Uberti Cattleman. Is there any advantage of one over the other? I also shoot a Uberti "66 Winchester clone. I usually shoot 250 gr, but have a bunch of 200gr I'd like to try. Ballistically, which is superior?
    Thanks,
    John
     
  2. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

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    For what? The 200's can be driven a little faster, so shoot flatter. The traditional .45 Colt load would use a 255 gr. LRN or LRNFP.
     
  3. JohnnyB

    JohnnyB Member

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    re: colt bullet weight

    I mainly shoot target at 15, 25, and 50 yds
     
  4. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    You'll generally find that the fixed sights on the Colt 1873 clones are regulated for the standard 255 at 850 fps. By "regulated" I mean that they shoot to the point of aim at 25yards...more or less. More of a working compromise than a zero, though some will be zeroed with that load...but it's usually a happy coincidence. Most are close enough to use a little Kentucky windage and Tennessee elevation and get on target.

    When you switch to a lighter/faster bullet...that changes. Depending on a couple things, the change may be a little...and it may be a lot. As a rule, the faster the bullet, the lower it will print on target. Sometimes, you can play with handloads and find one that not only produces fine accuracy, but also happens to shoot to the same point of aim as the standard, or "power" load. It's part of what makes handloading so interesting.

    Single-actions in particular exhibit more change in POA/POI with different bullet weights and velocities because of the way they recoil...rolling up in the hand instead of punching back in a straighter line like DA revolvers. They require a very consistent grip in order to shoot consistently to the same point.
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Standard bullet weight for the .45 Colt is a 250 - 255 grain lead bullet at around 850 - 900 FPS.

    Fixed sight revolvers like yours will generally shoot pretty close to POA with that bullet weight & velocity.

    Lighter bullets or faster bullets will generally shoot lower due to less recoil moving the gun before the bullet gets out of the barrel.

    rc
     
  6. jmortimer

    jmortimer Member

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    What 1911Tuner and rcmodel said. Why mess with perfection - a 255 grain SWC at 900 fps plus/minus. It will do just about anything you would want a handgun to do.
     
  7. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    In my very humble opinion, the .45 Colt loaded to standard specs...250 at 900 fps...is about as good as it gets in a single-action revolver. For my money, it's the 2nd best revolver cartridge there is, right behind the .41 Magnum, and just ahead of the .44 Special.

    And, for the record...I rarely load .41 Magnum to its potential, even in a Blackhawk. A 210 grain cast bullet at 1050 fps or so suits me just fine.
     
  8. sourdough44

    sourdough44 Member

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    Another load to look into is a 200 grain bullet loaded in a 45 Schofield case for you 45 Colt. I use a charge of Titegroup. There's plenty of extra room you don't really need in that 45 colt case.
     
  9. evan price

    evan price Member

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    The 250 would be the "traditional" slug to use.

    I'm loading for a Taurus Judge, and handcast from range scrap the Lee TL-452-230-2R, unsized and tumble lubed works great here. It has a strong shoulder like a SWC to roll crimp over, and it fits the Judge chamber even though it is above the 1.600" OAL of a 45 LC.

    Otherwise I am using Berry's plated 250-gr FPs. Both with Titegroup.
     
  10. loadedround

    loadedround Member

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    I shoot several handguns in 45 Colt and have found the heavier 255 gr bullet to be the more accurate bullet at distances past 25 yards. Using a target load with the 200 gr LSWC bullet at 10-to 25 yards to be slightly more accurate. If I push this 200 gr bullet a little faster, it seems to loose it's accuracy edge. Also found the best powder to be Unique.
     
  11. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I have to add my voice to using a 250/255gr bullet in your .45 Colt ammo BUT, if you have a bunch of 200gr LRNFP bullets there's no reason not to load them up and shoot them.

    I usually shoot a 250/255gr bullet from my .45 Colt but got a hold of some too soft for .45 Auto 230gr LRN bullets so I loaded them up for my .45 Colt and blasted away. If you're buying for the Colt stick with the heavier bullets but you can shoot anything you have if you want to "use them up." Like said above the POA/POI will change but you can make the adjustment in POA until you use up the lighter bullets in practice...
     
  12. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Member

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    If for Paper Targets and great fun, see "Western Bullet" ( Montana ) for Wadcutters for .45 Colt.

    Ones I got are 230 Grain ( old 'SAECO' #453 )

    At least, if .452 or .453 will do for your Bore anyway.

    Be good for some .45 ACP Revolvers also ( but not mine! Bore too big for these. )
     
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