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Powders for .45 Colt shot shells?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Navy_Guns, Jan 13, 2009.

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  1. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    I loaded some up based on data I found on various sites.

    Winchester cases
    9.0 grains of Unique
    .025" cardboard wad (cut with a 7/16" grommet hole cutter)
    ~173 grains of 7 1/2 shot (approx 140 pellets)
    sized Hornady .45 gas check crimped in on top

    I tested them yesterday out of a Taurus 450SS ultra light with a 2" ported barrel. Even with the ports, the load feels hotter than your typical Cowboy Action load. You really wouldn't dare use something like this as a defense load. Maybe at contact ranges, but at 8 feet I had 60 pellets hit the gallon jug and 55 of them never made it out of the jug.

    Now, the whole point for this post: I was hoping to find a powder that would give me acceptable performance with less bulk so I could fit more shot in the case. Any suggestions?
     
  2. jjohnson

    jjohnson Member

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    Powder Burn Rate Chart

    Well, okay, I've reloaded shot a couple times...

    What you're looking for is a fast burning powder like what you'd use in target loads for .38 or so. Those tend to be "low bulk," which is what you're looking for when you're askng for more space.

    Popular powders include Bullseye, Titegroup, and Red Dot. Have a look at this chart and go for the lowest number that's convenient for you.

    http://www.reloadbench.com/burn.html

    My guess is you've probablyalready got some Bullseye or Titegroup, or something similar, if you load those mid-power target ammo.
     
  3. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  4. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    I like 3 to 5 grains of Bullseye in .45 Colt. That barely dusts the bottom of the case.
     
  5. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    I've loaded essentially the same load you're using, but I use 5gr+/- of Bullseye.

    I'd drop the charge to 5-6gr of Unique. You'll get a better pattern.

    Even at that, you're patterns will be such that they aren't useable for much past 15' for most purposes.

    At this range, a 200fps difference in mv is negligeable.
     
  6. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    Bullseye it is, then!

    I tabulated the pattern - the attached .jpg shows the number of hits in the 1" grids around my point of aim. This round gave ~13" spread at a distance of 8 feet. I bet it'd be good for breaking hand-thrown clays, maybe even win a bet or two with friends who hadn't seen it done before. :D

    I just picked up a pound of Bullseye this weekend, so I'll give it a whirl and post my results. Thanks for the help, guys.
     

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  7. Gryffydd

    Gryffydd Member

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    I've got a 5.5" revolver in .45 Colt on the way. I'm planning on making up a few shotshells with some Green Dot I have left over. I'll let you know how that works.

    The Speer shotshells are nice in that they give you a bit more capacity for the shot. I'm just not sure they're worth the $.28/ea compared to just using cardboard or gas checks for wadding.
     
  8. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    The question is, what's good enough? If you can kill a snake at 15 feet, that's good enough -- until you run into a snake 16 feet long.:D
     
  9. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Depends on whether you like cleaning leading out of the rifling or not I guess.

    rc
     
  10. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    You can cut a strip of plastic from a milk container, roll it and force it down inside the shell, then add the pellets -- it does a good job of preventing leading.

    But realistically, how many snake loads will you shoot in a year?
     
  11. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    That was my point in suggesting the CCI Speer shot-caps.

    For the amount of snake-loads you would use, they have it all over loose shot & wads in several respects.
    Capacity, cleaner bore, better pattern, etc.

    Cost doesn't seen so important to me when you consider all the benefits, and the small number you would use after you get done playing around with them at first.

    rc
     
  12. jcjacobvt

    jcjacobvt Member

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  13. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

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    I use the Speer cases for 38 shotshells, and use the smallest shot I have on hand, which is 8-1/2's. Using them, and seating them like you would a SWC, doesn't reduce your powder capacity
     
  14. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    What's wrong with using a jacketed round to blow out any lead that builds up on the rifling?
     
  15. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    Tried Bullseye - works good!

    I loaded up a few with 5.0 grains of Bullseye last night and it allows an increase in the shot charge to 212 grains (+23%). That's about 169 pellets of 7 1/2 shot. I fired one this morning to get a pattern, but I haven't done any penetration checks with this new load. Really, messing with water-filled jugs at 6 am in 12 degree weather was just a bridge too far...

    The recoil didn't feel as sharp as the Unique load, and the pattern at 8 feet is noticeably tighter and more dense. I think it's time to try some skeet shooting with my 2" snubby! :D
     

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