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Old 02-12-2013, 04:07 PM
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Question Alliant Herco powder?

Herco was recommended to me by a fellow range member. He said he uses it in all of his pistol caliber loads. We were talking & I said I wanted something I can use in all my pistol calibers. .380, 9mm, .40, 10mm, & .45acp. Only loading for
9mm & .45 now but eventually will for the rest.

Anyone have any experience or opinions on this powder?
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Old 02-12-2013, 04:09 PM
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Herco is great for the 9mm.

Just fill the case and put the bullet in.
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:06 PM
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Herco is on the slow end of the baker's dozen of so of powders that can be used to reload pistol cartridges. Personally I prefer powders closr to the middle of the burn rate becasue they require less powder (economy) and burn cleaner at somewhat higher pressures (shoot longer without binding ). As long as you stay with a good reloading manual all can be used safely.
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:21 PM
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I've used it in .380, 9mm, 44Spl/Mag and 45acp/Auto-rim with good results in every one. You'll have to dig thru some older data to find published loads but there is plenty out there.
In a lot of ways I like it better then Unique.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:04 PM
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Just checked a 2005 edition of Alliant's powder guide and it does list loads for Herco in all the calibers you listed. I have used it in the past but primarily for shotguns and a limited amount of pistol. It is a good powder but for multiple calibers I prefer some of the newer ones like Universal as it meters better in my press.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:12 AM
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Thanks for the advice guys.

If not Herco what would be your go to powder for all the pistol loads I listed? I'd like to find one that will work w/all if possible.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richeyo2 View Post
Thanks for the advice guys.

If not Herco what would be your go to powder for all the pistol loads I listed? I'd like to find one that will work w/all if possible.
Herco's actually very versatile, heck there's even a decent .32ACP load for it!

Since you asked though; personally, Unique is my "go to" powder for almost all pistol calibers.

ETA: I've used Unique successfully in all the calibers you listed plus and easy dozen more.

Last edited by arkdweller22; 02-13-2013 at 01:23 AM.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arkdweller22 View Post
Herco's actually very versatile, heck there's even a decent .32ACP load for it!

Since you asked though; personally, Unique is my "go to" powder for almost all pistol calibers.

ETA: I've used Unique successfully in all the calibers you listed plus and easy dozen more.
Cool thanks for the info...I'll see if I can find some Unique also, I know where some Herco is at, maybe I'll just grab a 1lb container for now of it.
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:27 AM
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The 45 Auto is a fairly low pressure cartridge so it's different than the higher pressure 9mm and 40 S&W cartridges. If you're just starting out i would suggest using a medium burn powder that meters well, that would be W231/HP-38. I use almost nothing else in the 9mm and it's the only powder I use in the 45 Auto.
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:57 AM
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My go to powder is 231/HP-38. Unique would be my second choice.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:13 AM
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Herco is 1 of those overlooked powders that fall into the lighter end of the magnum class of powders.
Its burn rate is right there with hs-7, wsf (Winchester super field) & imr 4756.
Herco is at its best when it’s used in the manor it was designed to be used, “heavy loads”.

A lot of reloaders/shooters overlook these types of powders (as you can see by the different recommendations for other powders in this short thread) because they will use only 3 basic types of powders (lite, medium & magnum).
A lite powder= bullseye, hp38/ww231, AA#2 to name a few. These are all fast burning powders for lite/target loads.
Medium powders= unique, universal clays, AA#% to name a few. They types of powders are all a general purpose powders that do their best with standard loads.
Lite magnum powders= hs-6, hs-7, wsf, power pistol, AA#7, 4756 to name a few. All these powders tend to do their best when they are used to make heavy loads (p+ & magnum).
Magnum powders= 2400, h100/296, AA#9. They are best at what they are named after, magnum loads.

Herco is at its best in 9mm, 40s&w, 45acp p+, 38p+ ammo & the heavier the bullet the better.
A good example of its uses is in the 9mm:
A max load of unique & a max load of Herco pushing a 125gr fmj bullet or a 147gr jhp, the Herco will give you 100fps faster/over the unique with either bullet.

Why you’re looking at Herco, you might as well really look at Herco. Here’s something to think about (I’m going to post this same pic/question in the FBI load thread). There’s been a lot of threads lately talking about what powder buffalo bore uses for their FBI 38spl p+ load. A member on this forum had bought some ammo from bb & pulled 1 of their bullets apart to get a look at the powder they used & to weigh the charge of powder they use. The powder weighed 7.5gr & looks real close to Herco to me. Here’s a pic of Herco powder, note the dark bumpy flakes & the lesser light colored smooth flakes.



Here’s a link to the thread/picture of the bb powder.

Duplicating Buffalo Bore FBI Load

Just something to think about, it never hurts to keep a lb. or 2 of the lite magnum powders around. They can & will produce some highly accurate hard hitting loads at the economical price of a gr or 2 more powder compared to unique, hp-38 or bullseye.
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Old 02-13-2013, 12:33 PM
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Since .380 and .45 are lower pressure loads, it seems you really could do to have two powders, rather than one. If you just have to use one, I would try to get along with 231/HP38. If you can go for two, I would probably add HS6 for the other three calibers, or maybe AA7 if you happen to like Accurate Arms powders. I have less trouble buying HS6. AA7 can be tough to find.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:50 PM
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I really like Herco in the 40 and 38 upper end loads. I look at it as a Unique +P powder.
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:17 PM
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MD had very good advice I been reloading 40 years and had herco given to me from a shotgum shooting buddy so i loaded .45 acp .357 and 9mm with it had good success
bullseye is my go to powder but with the .40 and power pistol i am trying that now in many loads Herco is slow and an older powder my mainstays are bulleseye, 2400 and power pistol I favor alliant used to buy a lot of hercules film back in the day
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