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Is factory considered "hot"?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Shrinkmd, Nov 30, 2009.

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  1. Shrinkmd

    Shrinkmd Member

    Jul 1, 2005
    Austin, TX
    I was reading over the back of a Magtech catalog, and they listed all the bullet weights and muzzle velocities. My question is, depending on powder choice, are standard factory velocities actually "hot" when it comes to brass life as well as your gun?

    For example, it looks like factory 45 hardball should be about 830 for a 230 rn. As long as your powder gets you there below a max load, would this be considered hot?

    Of course, factory brass is only meant to be shot once, so to speak, and then what we do with it afterward is somewhat "off label" to mix metaphors. I know that the paper doesn't care how fast it is going, but it seems to make sense to have a decent amount of practice with loads that approximate what real SD ammo feels like. Can't shoot 22lr all the time, right?
  2. Steve C

    Steve C Member

    Jan 5, 2006
    Hot loads are usually ones that are faster than typical factory loadings though there are some small "factories" that produce hotter ammo than the Big 3. Makes like Corbon, Buffalo Bore, Rhino and others generally produce "hotter" ammunition.

    Matching the performance of ammunition loaded by Winchester, Federal or Remington is relatively easy to do with the right components and generally produces accurate ammunition. All these manufacturers often provide a bit more velocity for their "personal defense" or Police ammunition. Compare 230gr FMJ with 230gr HP ammo of the same weight.
  3. digisol

    digisol Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Sunny QLD
    As a general rule factory loads would be considered as perhaps quite warm, say 6/10 to 8/10 depending on the brand .

    Most of the factory ammo would be in some brands be IMO close to 1 - 2% off max listed loads, each brand of ammo differs, PMC ammo was always pretty warm while Winchester would be fairly tame and perhaps 6% off max.

    Much of the military surplus stuff is fairly hot in either pistol or rifle, i've seen 5.56 and 7.62 ammo that would often show primers at or past max load signs and 9mm pistol that push the primer into the firing pin hole, and in good condition guns.

    The individual shooter / re-loader each has a different opinion as what is hot, allthough I have given my views above from primers which for most handloads that would be considerd as being hot in reference to how all loading manuals usually show pictures of flattened primers which usually indicates a warmish - hot load.

    Once you start to load you will soon see the difference, and manuals usually have pics of these pressure signs, a google search should suffice.

    Remember whatever maximum load that is listed in any loading manual could in some firearms be able to increase that powder charge another 2-3% but doing so is NOT reccomended unless loads have been worked up "slowly" from 10% starting loads, and then only for the particular firearm being loaded for.

    For some reference, 5.56 NATO military ammo are NOT the same as .223 Rem factory ammo and should not be considered as being the same, They are NOT, military ammo put into a domestic rifle chambered for .223 will be considerably hotter and sometimes dangerous than any maximum 223 rem handload.

    I have loaded for a 5 different rifles and 8 pistols so I have a fair idea of cold warm or hot, I have seen where military 5.56 nato rounds when fired in a conventional bolt action 223 rifle have shown excessive high pressure problems, do so at your own peril, many have been known to jam the projectile into the lands meaning sure high pressure problems even before firing the thing.
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