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High velocity 9mm loads from a 16" barrel

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by lewallenap, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. lewallenap

    lewallenap Member

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    Hi everyone, I thought a few people might find this a bit interesting, or maybe even useful.

    Not too long ago, I bought myself a 9mm Kel-Tec Sub2000 as a little fun plinking gun. Before I bought the gun, I got into handloading, and had already worked up a 124 grain load for my pistols using HP-38. Firing it from the Sub2000, I didn't see much of an energy difference. When I started running low on HP-38, I decided to pick up a pound of CFE Pistol. I worked up a load for my handgun, and the powder worked great. I thought it was fairly clean burning and really did reduce copper fouling after a few hundred rounds. So I thought it would be fun to try out in the Sub2000.

    Well, when I loaded these same rounds into the Sub2000 and fired the first shot, there was a HUGE difference. The report was significantly louder, the recoil was significantly more than my standard HP-38 loads, and the projectile was hitting the steel with much more force. After reading Hodgdon's burn rate chart, I quickly realized why this was the case. CFE Pistol is a fairly slow burning powder, and this must be what was contributing to the significant boost in energy.

    I stepped back to around 75 yards, and to my amazement, I was able to ring the steel very easily. The projectile was reaching the target much, much faster than my standard loads. The steel plate was also reacting as if I had shot it from 10 yards with my CZ. I unfortunately don't have a chronograph yet, but I'm convinced these rounds are leaving that 16" barrel around 1500-1600 fps (124 grain projectile). This puts the energy on par with that of a 125 grain .357 magnum cartridge, if that velocity is true. Either way, it's still flying a good bit faster than normal, and shooting from a distance is much easier.

    I figured some of you might find this info interesting. If any of you have a 16" barreled 9mm carbine, and some CFE pistol, try it out! You might be surprised. Also, if you try this and have a chronograph, let me know what kind of velocities you get! It makes the gun significantly more fun to fire.
     
  2. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    Try Acurate #7, it was developed by Israel for the Uzi. I thought it was worthless till I tried it in my hi point carbine. It is to 9mm what H110 is to 357. It really puts them out there. On my chrono 1350 fps with a 147, 16" barrel.
     
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  3. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    As you have found out, with 124/5 Gr bullets in 9MM the fast powders you don't gain much from a 16" barrel, but with medium to medium slow powders you can gain 200 or so FPS over fast powder loads.

    My N320/124 Gr 9MM load gains virtually nothing, while things like HS-6, AA #5, N340, etc gain a lot. AA #7 should do/reportedly does, very well, and an experiment with AA #9 would be fun just to see what it can do.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018 at 6:24 PM
  4. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    Thank you for your range report.

    Just a note on the 124gr 9mm equalling a 125gr .357 Magnum. Yes, the 9mm fired from a carbine will come close to the Magnum when the .357 is fired from a short revolver but not when both are fired in the longer barrel. I tested some 125gr .357 Magnum rounds over the chrono from a Levergun and they generated an average velocity of over 2,200 fps. Still, any 9mm round pushing ~1,500 fps is impressive and like said above, the velocity is aided by medium burn powders taking advantage of the longer barrel.
     
  5. PPGMD

    PPGMD Member

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    My Steel Challenge load that is 115gr Bayou RN over 5.1gr Winchester Autocomp, is 132PF out of my 5" 2011 Open Gun, makes 152PF out of my 16" JP 9mm AR.
     
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  6. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    In reality they are more likely in the 1250 to 1350 range.

    N340 9MM Load # 109.jpg
     
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  7. wrench459

    wrench459 Member

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    9-23-2017
    995TS 16.5"bbl

    6.4gr. power pistol set at 1.120 OAL
    Everglades 124gr JHPV2

    1409
    1359
    1400
    1418
    SD 26...dang that '59
     
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  8. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    5.8 Grs was too hot.
    N340 9MM Load #  88.jpg
     
  9. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Almost no gain with a fast powder, N320.
    N320 9MM Load #  102.jpg
     
  10. rg1

    rg1 Member

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    A moderate load with 124 FMJ's in my 4" barrel pistol gets about 1050 fps. In the 16" Kel Tec it gains about 200 fps. Some try light 90 grain .380 bullets and slow powders such as AA#7 and report high velocities in the 1900 fps range. I still prefer to shoot the same loads in my pistol and carbine without developing rifle and separate pistol loads and trying to keep them separate.
     
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  11. lewallenap

    lewallenap Member

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    Next time I run by Cabela's, I might just pick up a pound and try it out. I would be really happy if I could get a higher velocity.
     
  12. rg1

    rg1 Member

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  13. lewallenap

    lewallenap Member

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    You may be right. According to Hodgdon's chart, CFE is slower burning than N-340. I'm not sure how much of an influence that may have on the projectile's velocity. I think it is possible to achieve those velocities, however. I've seen a number of people claiming upper 1400's and mid 1500's with somewhat similar loads, using similar burning powders. For me to achieve what I felt was moving that fast, I used around 5.4 grains of powder with a COL of 1.13", so the load was certainly hot. I have a feeling it may actually be around the mid 1400's, but the only real way for me to find out would be to buy a chronograph. Thanks for posting your data!
     
  14. lewallenap

    lewallenap Member

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    I'm making the assumption that the velocity might be around the range I mentioned (albeit the loads are a little too hot for my liking), considering how surprisingly slow burning CFE Pistol is. Thanks for that link! Reading into it, it appears some people are able to achieve mid 1400's with .40sw. Hopefully I can achieve the ballpark I mentioned in my original post (I'm wanting to keep the Sub2000 as a trunk gun, and 33 rounds of ~1500fps 124gn 9mm is certainly formidable). My main thing is reasonably long range shooting though, I was originally having to hold my front post a little too high over my plate with the pistol loads, but my higher velocity loads definitely remedied that. I really need to try out some 90gn loads! 1900fps is absolutely absurd, and actually really energetic.
     
  15. lewallenap

    lewallenap Member

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    This sort of data is what's making me think I may actually be achieving higher velocities like I mentioned. CFE Pistol is significantly slower than Power Pistol, so by virtue it should benefit velocity even more in long barrels. Either way, 1400fps alone is quite impressive.
     
  16. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    I don't think you'll get a 124/5 Gr bullet to 1500 unless a very slow dense powder like AA #9 or Enforcer will do it. Maybe AA #7. No way you'll get 1600 IMHO. I'd have to see published data to believe it was done under SAMMI pressure limits.

    As always, work up to it. Y'all be careful out there.

    Max charge of 3N37 and a light 90 Gr JHP. :)

    3N37 9MM Load # 105.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018 at 7:35 AM
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  17. Artofgolf

    Artofgolf Member

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    Those Little Lasers” are a great performance round. ✅


    ...Hopefully I can achieve the ballpark I mentioned in my original post (I'm wanting to keep the Sub2000 as a trunk gun, and 33 rounds of ~1500fps 124gn 9mm is certainly formidable)...

    LL_test90grSierra.png


    The Sierra JHP was slightly shorter than the RMR 90 gr. pill. Hence, the OAL adjustment to 1.07 (1.065 +/- .001) as recorded in Walkalong's recipe for this zinger.
    This one performed very well in my Sub2000 Gen 2. :D

    AoG
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018 at 9:07 AM
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  18. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Yep, those "Overrun" 90 Gr Sierras sure do shoot well. Appear to be Sig V Crown bullets. Either an overrun or a weight they didn't use etc.

    Work it up folks, work it up. :)
    3N37 9MM Load # 103 - 90 Gr Sierra.jpg
     
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  19. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    That is the first thing I noticed about 90 Gr JHPs from my 5" 1911, man, they sure do get there quickly.

    AOG nicknamed these loads "Little Lasers".

    If you really want speed, check out the LeHigh Defense 65 Gr bullets thread. Now those are smoking..... At +P pressure they should get right at 1600 FPS from a 3.1" Shield (Standard pressure did 1587), and over 2100 FPS from the 16" AR (Standard pressure did 2111). (Using LeHigh data)
     
  20. Artofgolf

    Artofgolf Member

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    The thread was titled "Calling all Powder Gurus". Here's the link: https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php?threads/calling-all-powder-gurus.829589/page-4

    The Lehigh Xtreme Defense
    solid copper alloy bullets are rated to 4,000 fps. ZINGER :evil: indeed!
     

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