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Reading the 500 magnum

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by JRWhit, Oct 24, 2020.

  1. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    Hello all, been a while but it's gotten into fall and it's time to get back to shooting.
    I have recently gotten into a 500 S&W. Here is a quick detail on what I'm working with.
    Performance Center 10.5". I'm using Star line Brass and loading Vihtavuori N-110 behind a Sierra 350gn JHP. Starting at 33gn and working to 38gn. Using LR primers and OAL is 2.06 to the connalure.

    I bought some factory loads to compare to but I'd really like to hear from somebody who's been down this road. What are the typical pressure signs I need to look for with the 500? I wasn't sure primers would be an good indicator since it is using LR. Are flattened primers going to be typical or a sign of way over pressure? Other than that, I'm assuming the norm in watching for sticky extraction, loose primer pockets, and web thinning. Any one who can help is much appreciated.
     
  2. forty_caliber

    forty_caliber Member

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    I've started to load for the 500SW a month or so ago. I've got the 7 3/8" Performance Center.

    I've got a couple of loads that I'm really happy with.
    460gr FRNGC over 37gr W-296 ~1800fps. This one is on the warm to hot side. No pressure signs in the brass. It makes the T-Rex's nervous.
    330gr Acme Lipstick LRN over 12gr Trail Boss - 1000fps. This one is a fun to shoot, mild target load.

    I've never used and of the N-100.

    .40
     
  3. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Member

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    In a revolver your load will probably be limited by the ability to easily eject 5 shells from the cylinder. Other than that, my practice is to start low and work up watching group size. Generally the groups will tighten and, as the load is increased, will start to get wider. I stop where the groups are the tightest.
     
  4. captain awesome

    captain awesome Member

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    In the past I have flattened some primers pretty good in my 500s using H110 and some 300 grain jacketed bullets. Considering the insane pressure they are rated for I didn't lose sleep over it but backed them off a bit. Never did get any sticky extraction on my 500s even with the flat primers. That being said I would never in good conscience tell someone flat primers are ok. Watch for sticky extraction as others have suggested.
     
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  5. Toprudder
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    Toprudder Contributing Member

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    Don't know how it transfers over, but I load for a 460. Everything I have read about it indicates that the max pressure (65k psi) will require hammering out the spent brass, so most factory loads are loaded less than that. I worked my loads up by checking extraction and when they started to stick, I backed down 0.5gn and called it good. I was below max published charge. I did not go any higher since I have no desire to hammer out spent cases.
     
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  6. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    Were you using LR or LP magnum primers?
    The thing I'm not sure of is reading the LR primers. Loading for rifles I've always stopped due to other signs before getting close to flattening the LR primers. Usually start seeing ejector swipe or loose pockets before any flattening occurs. It guess I just wasn't sure if that the LR primers would be a reliable read in the 500 and which would come first, sticky extraction, or flat primers.
     
  7. captain awesome

    captain awesome Member

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    I have only ever used large rifle primers in my 500 loads.
     
  8. forty_caliber

    forty_caliber Member

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    I've been using Federal LRM in my loads.

    .40
     
  9. sparkyv

    sparkyv Member

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    Like Toprudder, I load and shoot the 460. Any loads over mid-range loads flatten my primers, and they really can't get much worse with max or just over max loads. I clocked these at just under 2,100fps yesterday out of my 5" 460V, flat as usual. Sticky cases are the sure sign you're getting close to max pressure, but I haven't loaded to that point yet. These screamers were 200g FTX, pretty much full up with H110 with absolutely no sticky cases. 20201025_112705.jpg


     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2020
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  10. Typetwelve

    Typetwelve Member

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    I load for 460 as well and have seen the same thing. Loaded near max listed charges, the cases will stick. I do the same thing and reduce the load to where the cases don't stick anymore.

    Flattened primers are a different story...any strong 460 load I've made has flattened primers (I used large rifle mag, BTW). With that much case pressure, it's just going to happen to some degree.
     
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  11. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    I sure appreciate the input. I will be on the look for sticky extraction.
    For anyone interested in the result.
    No flattened primers or sticky extraction. 37.5gn Is where I found the best accuracy. I'll have to wait until I have my chrono to see what they clock at. True to what I have always heard the Viht N110 is exceptionally clean. Thanks all
     
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