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  #1  
Old 09-12-2009, 04:27 PM
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Default Who likes Herco?

When I got back into reloading a couple years back, I started with Unique as an all-around pistol powder. But it seemed rather dirty.

I quit using Unique, substituting Herco in its place. Herco seems cleaner and meters better, and I get good results in .38 /.357, especially with Berry and/or Rainier plated bullets. Good accuracy, very clean, good velocity.

Funny, but I never thought of using Herco when I reloaded many years ago, and I never read much about that powder.

How do the rest of you folks feel about Herco?
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Old 09-12-2009, 04:41 PM
Skip Sackett Skip Sackett is offline
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To me it is one of those powders that has been around a long time but isn't too popular. I have manuals that have data for it dating back to the early '70s. That speaks well of it.

I know that there is one fellow that has done just like you, substituted all of his Unique loadings for Herco ones.

In my opinion, for handgun powders, ANYTHING (other than 800X) meters better than Unique!

I have used it, nothing to write home about in my opinion.
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Old 09-13-2009, 01:14 AM
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Like many handgun powders, Herco is a shotgun powder. That's why it's still around, regardless of how many use it in handgun loads.

I have a pound of Herco, but I haven't loaded anything with it yet. I'll probably try it with Speer #8 loads in 9mm Luger where it outperforms SR 4756.
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Old 09-13-2009, 04:34 AM
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Default Very Similar to Unique

Herco is very similar to Unique... in fact some people use it interchangeably... though that isn't a good idea IMHO... it isn't the same powder... albeit very close.

I used it for a long time for 44 Spl loads and it worked well indeed.

Sometimes you could find Herco at bargain prices because it had been on the dealer shelf a long time, though that probably isn't the case just now.

FWIW

Chuck
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Old 09-13-2009, 07:12 AM
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I use Herco for many of my handloads, but Herco seems to leave a very tough carbon type residue on my guns so I'm going to investigate Power Pistol further when my Herco supply starts to get a little low. In .380 I've found that Power Pistol gives similar performance, but a much cleaner burn and it meters a lot better than Herco. Give Power Pistol a try, you may have a new favorite.
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Old 09-13-2009, 06:39 PM
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I know a few handloaders who use Herco and they are all Alliant powder fans. When I need a powder in that burn rate range I usually use HS-6 or Longshot. (I'm a Hodgdon/IMR/Winchester fan)
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WVfishguy View Post
When I got back into reloading a couple years back, I started with Unique as an all-around pistol powder. But it seemed rather dirty.

I quit using Unique, substituting Herco in its place. Herco seems cleaner and meters better, and I get good results in .38 /.357, especially with Berry and/or Rainier plated bullets. Good accuracy, very clean, good velocity.

Funny, but I never thought of using Herco when I reloaded many years ago, and I never read much about that powder.

How do the rest of you folks feel about Herco?
I tend to use the faster and cleaner burning powders in mild 38 Special loadas with playted bullets - I prefer American Select but have also had good success with Trail Boss. I do use Herco in 28 ga shotshells and it is my favorite powder for that usage.
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Old 09-17-2009, 06:55 PM
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I use a lot of Herco to load handgun ammo. I have a feeling I may not use as much in the future though. I am really liking AutoComp a lot for the same applications.
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Old 09-18-2009, 01:23 AM
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HERCO is a very versatile powder that is slower than Unique but faster than Blue Dot and it is considerably cheaper than Unique or Blue Dot. I use it across the board in all my handgun loads from light .38 Special target loads to moderately heavy .357 and .44 mag loads. It works good in .40 S&W and .45ACP too.
Alliant currently has no lead bullet load data for 9mm, .40 S&W or 10mm and minimual Herco data. I've been using Herco loads gleaned from old data guides put out in the 80's and early 90s. If anyone has 10mm lead bullet load data for Herco I can certainly use some.
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Old 09-18-2009, 08:18 AM
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I use a lot of Herco also for most of my handgun loads. Using old loading manuals from the 50's and 60's for info. I have never been disapointed in my reloads with this powder when it comes to velosity and accuracy.

Herco is a great powder IMO.

Kirmdog
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:23 PM
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Default Reloading advice

Hello,, I've been using Bullseye and Unique powder for 38 spl, 9mm and 40 S&W, It has always worked great, I have a friend that used to load shotgun but stopped, He gave me a 3lbs of Hercules Herco shot gun powder, I see where some of you are saying that you can use it for reloading pistol, If that is true, do you know where I can get the load data.


38 Spl @ 127 bullet grn
9mm @ 125 bullet grn
40 cal @ 143 bullet grn
and
40 cal @ 180 bullet grn

Any help will be highly appreciated.
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:24 PM
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Welcome to the forum.
Usually when looking for specific information it's better to start a new thread instead of bringing back a 5 year old thread.

If you're looking for load data for Alliant powders you can get it on the Alliant site. You should also own and read at least one load manual, more if possible.
Here is the Alliant link: Alliant Powder - Reloader's Guide
Some of those bullet weights you listed are a little unconventional for the caliber you mentioned but the data is still good when only a grain or two off.
Here is another good site: http://handloads.com/loaddata/defaul...=&Type=Handgun

If you're loading cast bullets I highly suggest buying the Lyman 4th Edition Cast Bullet Handbook. I consider it a must if loading lead bullets.
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  #13  
Old 04-17-2014, 07:49 PM
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I like Herco.

It is like Unique, just a bit slower. I am finding a lot of older data and finding that it is actually more versatile for me since I like more magnum loads. Works well in the 38/44, 357 Magnum and similar beasts.

Good stuff!
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:07 PM
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An Easter week thread......resurrected! I like Herco-I've never bought or loaded any but at this time I love just the thought of any powder.
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Old 04-18-2014, 01:46 AM
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Back in the day, it was a sleeper powder for high perf 9mm. It should be fine in 40 & other service calibers. If I could get some, I would be a buyer.
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:01 AM
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I still have the first can of Herco I ever bought - back in the early 80's. I never took a liking to it for some reason. Can't say why, really. Maybe it's that goofy name? ;-) Longshot or Power Pistol have more pizazz, doncha think? What's in a name anyway?
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Old 04-18-2014, 11:20 AM
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Well the company might have made that name a little more attractive if they put it out as...................

"Her-co"
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Old 02-12-2016, 09:38 PM
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Herco is a great powder and can be used in a wide variety pistol calibers and shotguns. Around these parts, Herco is now almost non-existent, but I've found that Winchester WSF is a twin brother to Herco. My favorite load in a 44 special is: 240 grain LSWC and 7.0 grains of WSF using a standard large pistol primer.
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Old 02-12-2016, 10:02 PM
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Arch Angel had the the best info on this thread. Do your homework!! Blogs are great for very general data and OPINIONS. The best thing you can do for yourself and your hand guns is research for your caliber. Find powder and bullet weight for your application. Then get some ideas from the blogs. Then sit down at the bench, roll up a few test loads (go light) then go to the range.The beauty of loading is developing individual load to your liking. Other than that I use Herco in my magnums with good results. Just a bit harder to find than some.
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Old 02-12-2016, 10:25 PM
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I did some side-by-side tests to build a "+P" load for solid-frame .38 S&Ws a couple years back and Herco came out on top of the "performance" tests for me, edging out Unique with what appeared to be no pressure signs.

I've intended to expand tests of Herco into other non-magnum handgun rounds. I love Unique, don't care about anyone else's complaints about it but Herco could be a viable alternative.
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Old 02-12-2016, 10:28 PM
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Just shot some ammo I loaded with the tail end of a can I had for some reason. It was .45 Colt with 250 grain lead bullets and 9 grains of Herco, for about 860 fps. Seems accurate and clean,,and I'll probably use more of it.
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Old 02-13-2016, 01:33 PM
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Herco would be a great powder for 9mm if you are forced to seat the bullet deep because of chambering issues. It's a slower powder that won't go overpressure very easily and spills over a 9mm case if double charged. At the beginning of the powder shortage, I had a chance to buy an 8# jug of Herco, but since I had just bought a jug of Unique, I thought I was set for a while.<wrong>

I also really like 800X's performance in 9mm. It behaves very close to Herco but the flakes are HUGE


I finally found a pound of BE-86 and it is also right there with Herco and 800-X, except it meters beautifully. If I can find an 8# jug of it locally I'd scoop it up in a heartbeat. In the mean time, if you have Herco, use it. It's great in low pressure cartridges like 38 Special and 45ACP, but also works well in small case cartridges like 380 and 9mm.
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Old 02-13-2016, 02:20 PM
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I used to use Herco alot back in the day, along with 2400 and felt my bases were covered for what I was loading.
During the shortage I picked up 8lbs of Unique so I'm loading with that for awhile.
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Old 02-13-2016, 04:59 PM
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For me Herco always metered more uniformly than Unique.
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Old 02-14-2016, 01:16 AM
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I never understood the "dirty" comments. How does that affect accuracy? If it is "dirty," clean the gun. I grew up in the '60s and '70s believing that accuracy was the goal, and velocity second, and "dirty" was never even considered.
I love Herco in 9x19. At one time, Herco was THE 9x19 powder producing near max velocity (Blue Dot was about the only powder that gave higher velocity) with better accuracy than any powder out at the time.
It is versatile and gives reasonable to great accuracy in all appropriate cartridges. It isn't for low-pressure cartridges or light target loads (also being low pressure). It works well for cast bullets in rifles.
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Old 02-14-2016, 09:23 AM
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I like HERCO, been using it for over 20 years. But it's getting harder to find these days. If I could find it in a 8# jug! l'd buy it. I use it in most of my pistol loads. I find it very accurate in my 38 Super loads.
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Old 02-14-2016, 02:00 PM
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If I am right, Herco powder in the early days was the "Factory" powder for the 38 special ammo put out by the company's.

It is listed in a old Lyman as a "Fac Dup" in many of its loads that I was able to pick up.

Any slow powder is nice to have for a 38 special and the large flakes is also a plus when reloading. Both the Herco and 800-x are now gone........... and no BE-86 in sight.
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Old 02-15-2016, 11:18 PM
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I have used Herco in 45ACP and 44 special. I currently use it exclusively for 9x19 147gn JHP loads. Always a fan of this powder.
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:03 PM
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Herco has been my favorite powder for a long time. I use it in 9mm, 38sp, 10mm, 44mag, 45acp. I use Blue dot in my 38 super, but i'm sure it would work there too.
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Old 03-05-2016, 10:12 PM
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Herco is my powder for 9mm, 45ACP and 38spl. 6 grains work in all of them.
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Old 03-05-2016, 11:55 PM
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Back in my skeet shooting days, I used Herco a lot in 20 ga loads (along with Green Dot). I also used it successfully for .357 Magnum and .38 Super. I still have a 3-pound can (partial) of it. It does the job.
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Old 03-06-2016, 04:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DWalt View Post
Back in my skeet shooting days, I used Herco a lot in 20 ga loads (along with Green Dot). I also used it successfully for .357 Magnum and .38 Super. I still have a 3-pound can (partial) of it. It does the job.
Green Dot ..oh my used all the "Dots" back in the days, used one for this round another for that round. 2400 for .44mag rounds, good ole Bullseye for .38spl WC loads, Herco in .38spl and for the rockem- sockem rounds in .357mag was WW-630 (discontinued) but still have some. Back in the days, telling my age here, but powder didn't cost you an arm or leg for that matter. bring back ole memories here..used the "old" Lyman manual for cast bullets.

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Old 03-08-2016, 10:02 AM
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Herco is a very accurate powder under a 255 lswc in my 45 Colts
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Old 03-08-2016, 10:22 AM
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Never used it. I switched from Unique to Universal, which is another powder close to the same burn rate.
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:32 PM
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Default HERCO in S&W 500

I just got into S&W 500 reloading and found a recipe for 325gn RN plated bullet with 18 grains of UNIQUE.

I tried that load and recipe and it worked great. But I just ran out of UNIQUE and my local gun shop has a 8 lb tub of HERCO on sale for $15/lb.

I called Alliant/Herco and they told me that UNIQUE and HERCO are different powders and NOT to reload the 500 with HERCO.

I read elsewhere on this form that UNIQUE and HERCO can be used one-for-one on recipes.

Can anyone out there help with reload data for 325gn RN plated/jacketed and 460gn RN lead with gas checks?

thanks,

rmfort
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Old 03-11-2016, 11:18 AM
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my local gun shop has an 8 lb jug of HERCO for $150 ... good deal ??? ... also, I just ran out of UNIQUE that I use for S&W500 325gn RNJ reoloads with 18grns UNIQUE that works great ... can I use HERCO one for one with UNIQUE ... called Alliant they told me NO !!! .... don't use HERCO on S&W 500 !!! ... any opinion ???

thanks,
rmfort
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Old 03-11-2016, 02:43 PM
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Herco is slower than Unique. You will need more Herco to get the same velocity. I have no idea where you read that they could be used 1:1.
I could work up a load, but I doubt you could.
Did they give a reason, other than lack of data, to NOT use Herco? I have never had any issue with using Herco, any more than I have had an issue with Unique or 2400 or Green Dot or Red Dot or Bullseye. All are VERY stable and "well-behaved" powders.
$18/lb sounds OK, but only if you have load data/use for the powder.
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