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Old 01-10-2021, 01:05 PM
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Default 700X for .38 Special

Has anyone used a good loading of 700X for 148 grain WC in .38 Special? Have a few pounds that I can use up.
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Old 01-10-2021, 02:04 PM
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If you plan on 'running' thru a 52 I'd avoid it.
Have you tried reloading sites for 700x data?
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Old 01-10-2021, 02:16 PM
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The Hodgdon site has some loads. You really don't need very much. It looks like their top load is 2.5 grains.
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Old 01-10-2021, 02:39 PM
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The Hodgdon site has some loads. You really don't need very much. It looks like their top load is 2.5 grains.
Will try there. I have about six manuals and did not see any loads there,
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Old 01-10-2021, 03:00 PM
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Be careful with your load variations.. In my experience, the stuff meters like cornflakes.


Update: I just loaded 10 rounds (threw 10 charges, that is) with excellent consistency. Difference this time, I settled the powder in the hopper by tapping it lightly with a wrench handle. I was surprised at the results.

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Old 01-10-2021, 03:12 PM
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2.5 - 2.6grs . It's accurate in both 38 & 45 target loads . Coarse flakes not the best metering but not as bad as 800X .
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Old 01-10-2021, 04:45 PM
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In my experience 700X meters well enough that it provides about the most accurate loads in 9mm, 45. Have not tried 38's. = or- .1 does not make much difference on the target at 88 yards.
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Old 01-10-2021, 05:25 PM
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I've never used it, but you might try a Lyman book. 700X was and may still be a popular .38 Special wadcutter target powder. Should be plenty of data available though much of it might be in older sources. I don't know if it's faster or slower than Bullseye in burn rate but it should be close.
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Old 01-10-2021, 05:47 PM
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I’ve used 700x regularly in pistol ammo from .380 to .45 Colt. Both Hornady and Lyman books have data. Never had a problem with metering once I got the powder in the measures “settled”.
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Old 01-10-2021, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by rockquarry View Post
I've never used it, but you might try a Lyman book. 700X was and may still be a popular .38 Special wadcutter target powder. Should be plenty of data available though much of it might be in older sources. I don't know if it's faster or slower than Bullseye in burn rate but it should be close.
I have a 41st and 45th Edition of the Lyman Loading manuals and no joy there. I also have the Lyman Cast Bullet Loading Manual and finally found it there. It states 2.7 grains to 3.3 grains for a 148 grain bullet. I also have a burn rate chart pasted into the book I record all my loading in, not sure when or where I found it but was smart enough to keep it. On that chart 700X is listed as No.8 and Bullseye is listed as No.9.

I have digital and beam scales, also RCBS and Lyman Powder Measures, but I use more than anything Lee Powder Spoons. Those are what I learned on many moons ago. The loading manual I referenced goes back to 1975 and I learned before that. I have two different sets of the spoons (old and the "New Improved"). One of the spoons is for 2.7 grains of 700X. So will try that.

Thanks to everybody who responded.
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Old 01-10-2021, 06:25 PM
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Exclamation

I like both 700-X & 800-X, and will concur that getting a constant & consistant 2.5 gr powder charge (+ or - 5%) is naturally more difficult than with a larger load (say, 10.0 gr)...

And that's because that 0.1 gr in a 2.5 gr load is already 4% and most scales don't always measure to a better accuracy than 0.1 gr to begin with.

And this is where measuring by volume can come in handy. According to LEE their #3 scoop is 2.2 gr of 700-X: I'd just set my Ohaus @ 2.5 gr and use a HEAPING #3 and see how close it really comes... Then a small trickle (or two?) to get the scale centered, and repeat.

Almost impossible to double-charge (or even overcharge, by much?) a case this way, and it's pretty fast as well. Just scoop, adjust if necessary, then pour into the cases.
Now, 700-X may not drop well, hence the oft-heard "it meters like cornflakes!" But it seems to trickle well manually, and also from the Hornady L-n-L Autocharge. At least in my experience.

It is also unlikely there's going to be a problem with loading wadcutters "too deep"...?

Cheers!

P.S. I don't think that 2.5 MAX is truly a crucial upper limit, either: in the 125gr XTP the difference Hodgdons shows between a normal 38 Special & a +P load is 0.2 gr. With a 158 gr XTP the difference is 0.3 gr. Just IMHO.

P.P.S. I'm really interested in the previous post about LEE spoons being 2.7 gr vs. the 2.2 gr of 700-X I just checked in my shop! Are there NEW LEE spoons? This would be a situation where an additional 0.5 gr of powder would make a significant difference!

Last edited by STORMINORMAN; 01-10-2021 at 06:34 PM. Reason: Add a P.P.S. about LEE spoons
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Old 01-10-2021, 06:26 PM
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I have a 41st and 45th Edition of the Lyman Loading manuals and no joy there. I also have the Lyman Cast Bullet Loading Manual and finally found it there. It states 2.7 grains to 3.3 grains for a 148 grain bullet. I also have a burn rate chart pasted into the book I record all my loading in, not sure when or where I found it but was smart enough to keep it. On that chart 700X is listed as No.8 and Bullseye is listed as No.9.

I have digital and beam scales, also RCBS and Lyman Powder Measures, but I use more than anything Lee Powder Spoons. Those are what I learned on many moons ago. The loading manual I referenced goes back to 1975 and I learned before that. I have two different sets of the spoons (old and the "New Improved"). One of the spoons is for 2.7 grains of 700X. So will try that.

Thanks to everybody who responded.
I looked through a few just now; for cast WC .38 Special loads, it's listed in Hornady 8, Speer 13, the Lyman Pistol & Revolver Handbook, Lyman Cast #4, and the Lyman 50. Perhaps 700X still sees some use though maybe not among the newer handloaders.
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Old 01-10-2021, 07:20 PM
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P.P.S. I'm really interested in the previous post about LEE spoons being 2.7 gr vs. the 2.2 gr of 700-X I just checked in my shop! Are there NEW LEE spoons? This would be a situation where an additional 0.5 gr of powder would make a significant difference!

There are two different sets of Lee Powder Spoons. The set in the Black box I got used in the early 1970's and the white box Improved spoons I got quite a while ago. Both throw different amounts for the spoons that are in them.
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Old 01-10-2021, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by rockquarry View Post
I've never used it, but you might try a Lyman book. 700X was and may still be a popular .38 Special wadcutter target powder. Should be plenty of data available though much of it might be in older sources. I don't know if it's faster or slower than Bullseye in burn rate but it should be close.
Just about everything is slower than Bullseye.
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Old 01-10-2021, 07:31 PM
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Just about everything is slower than Bullseye.
Not 700X. This is different chart than the one I have pasted in my record book, it too lists 700X as faster than Bullseye. Comparative Burn-Rate Chart Lists 163 Powders << Daily Bulletin
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Old 01-10-2021, 07:35 PM
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Back in the 70's I used 2.8 grains 700X with a 148gr. HBWC in 38sp. It produced 777 Fps. Nice shooting round. Your results may very. Start low and work up. Be careful. Second addition Lee book shows 686 for 2.0 grains and 804 for 2.5 grains of 700X. You might start in that range.
Good luck and go by the book.
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Old 01-10-2021, 08:03 PM
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Just about everything is slower than Bullseye.
According to the 2020 Hodgdon burn rate chart, fast to slow, Bullseye is at #13.
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Old 01-10-2021, 08:11 PM
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According to the 2020 Hodgdon burn rate chart, fast to slow, Bullseye is at #13.
....And 700X is at #12.
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Old 01-10-2021, 09:45 PM
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Exclamation A BIG THANK YOU! for the clarification!

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There are two different sets of Lee Powder Spoons. The set in the Black box I got used in the early 1970's and the white box Improved spoons I got quite a while ago. Both throw different amounts for the spoons that are in them.
Thanks for the info. Those older ones are probably collector's items by now?

PLEASE confirm that they are not the same bright yellow as the newer ones? That, in a reloading instance like this thread describes, could be a real problem (probably not for an experienced reloader like AJ) as someone with less expertise reading a thread like this one might obtain the older set and think 2.7 gr was 2.2 gr... Or worse?

Danger, Will Robinson!
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Old 01-10-2021, 09:58 PM
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Thanks for the info. Those older ones are probably collector's items by now?

PLEASE confirm that they are not the same bright yellow as the newer ones? That, in a reloading instance like this thread describes, could be a real problem (probably not for an experienced reloader like AJ) as someone with less expertise reading a thread like this one might obtain the older set and think 2.7 gr was 2.2 gr... Or worse?

Danger, Will Robinson!
The older ones are black and the newer ones are yellow. Have two sets of each, guess I am just a packrat.
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Old 01-10-2021, 10:27 PM
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Good: those would be pretty hard to be confused for one another, than...!
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Old 01-10-2021, 11:41 PM
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I waited for a few of you to call in, before I added to this thread.

I used it when I first started loading with my M19-5 and also in some 12 Ga. loads back in the 70's.
Back then as long as it went "Bang" and things broke, it had to be ok, right ?

Then I got into some new powders and found out that 700x was not quite as "Clean" as the new powders and they also went through my long tube powder drop, a little better. However it was still better than 800-x in how it metered through the powder drop !!

As for that 148 gr powder data of 2.6 grs...........
My powder must of had some cream of wheat mixed in with it, because I sure used a lot more than that, in my loads.

Some people like it and some don't.........
but it is still a powder that will push a bullet down a barrel.

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Old 01-10-2021, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldRN View Post
I’ve used 700x regularly in pistol ammo from .380 to .45 Colt. Both Hornady and Lyman books have data. Never had a problem with metering once I got the powder in the measures “settled”.
Do you have a procedure to settle the powder? I ended up with a pound of 800x, and I am brand new at reloading. Will probably end up in medium 10mm loads.
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Old 01-11-2021, 09:26 AM
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I have nothing to add on the 700X, I just want to say how much I enjoy reading threads with content about using "old school" methods.

It reminds me of a much simpler time. It's also good to know that even with all the high tech stuff at your disposal you and others still take the time to hand craft each round.
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Old 01-11-2021, 10:22 AM
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As far as the LEE older set of scoops . I also have both , but my older set is red . So it seems they came in several different flavors -- red or black . As far as 700X , I really like it in lighter loads , 44 special , 45 acp etc . If I didn't have so much Bullseye powder I would definitely use it in 38 special loads -- 148 wc , 158 gr swc , etc . Regards Paul

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Old 01-11-2021, 12:19 PM
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Part of the problem is size of the flakes . Known to " bridge " in measures with smaller diameter / deeper cavities . Wider & shallower works better . Dad used to use a bunch in shotgun ammo . He made himself a dipper for his 38 wadcutter loads , IIRC he used a piece of fired 32 auto with a handle & filed it down until it was what he wanted .
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Old 01-11-2021, 02:17 PM
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Scooping powder charges , especially 700X, can be your most accurate way to dispense powder .
38 Special , 700X powder & 148 grain cast WC's :

use 2.7 grains to 3.4 grains for light target / plinking loads
3.5 grains @ 820 fps is a good standard / mid-range load and
4.0 grains @ 934 is about max if you need the extra 100 fps

700X seems to be a trifle faster burning than Bullseye but they are quite close... 700X does measure / scoop easier than Bullseye and that might give it an edge when using a powder measure .
700X is my first choice when I can't find Bullseye .
I'm a big fan of scoops / dippers ... make the ones I can't buy ...I like to see the powderand and how much powder , is going in each and every case !
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Old 01-11-2021, 02:55 PM
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Thirty years ago when my shooting partner and I competed in a casual PPC league every two weeks, a bunch of 700 X was fed into 38 Spl cases behind 148 gr HBWCs to keep my Fred Schmidt short cylinder gun charged. Never had problem that I recall.

Froggie
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Old 01-11-2021, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
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Scooping powder charges , especially 700X, can be your most accurate way to dispense powder .
38 Special , 700X powder & 148 grain cast WC's :

use 2.7 grains to 3.4 grains for light target / plinking loads
3.5 grains @ 820 fps is a good standard / mid-range load and
4.0 grains @ 934 is about max if you need the extra 100 fps

700X seems to be a trifle faster burning than Bullseye but they are quite close... 700X does measure / scoop easier than Bullseye and that might give it an edge when using a powder measure .
700X is my first choice when I can't find Bullseye .
I'm a big fan of scoops / dippers ... make the ones I can't buy ...I like to see the powderand and how much powder , is going in each and every case !
Gary
I have a good quantity of 700x on hand, but haven't tried using it yet. My one comment on the info in this thread is best illustrated in the data above. It appears that the usable range for this powder is VERY wide for the 148gr target wadcutters - from 2.7gr all the way up to 4.0gr.
Since that is the case, unless it is prone to bridging and dropping NO powder (creating squibs) I can't see any reason to use scoops or not to use some kind of auto measure. Unless maybe you are going for extreme consistency with near non-existent SD/ES numbers.

With a 1.3 gr acceptable range and a typical .1 +/- variation of most powder measures, you still end up with a range of target settings between 2.8gr and 3.9gr to throw charges within the acceptable ranges and tolerances.

I tend to stay away from the extremes and go really middle of the road, so after confirming all of the above in the books & online sources I'd be setting my measure up to throw somewhere around 3.3gr-3.4gr and checking it every 10 throws or so to verify the actual variation and accuracy.
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Old 01-11-2021, 04:47 PM
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3.1 of 700x with a hbwc is max for accuracy load in a revolver. It measures fine in my Dillon 550b. This load works good in my Clark 38 long slides also.

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Old 01-11-2021, 04:51 PM
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Exclamation

I'm a little hesitant to accept on its face the premise that there is an OVER 50% SAFE maximum "usable range" for ANY POWDER, much less one as fast as 700-X, specifically with a wadcutter. I'm comparing 2.5 vs. 4.0 gr here.

Hodgdons has a MAX of 3.7 gr for 38 Special, a 4.0 gr MAX for 38 Special +P and a START of 4.5 gr for 357 Magnum for the same Hornady 158gr XTP, and that last one's at 21,900 PSI in 357 Magnum brass. A 148gr wadcutter takes up a significantly greater amount of room in 38 Special brass than that 158gr XTP. That means increased pressure.

I'm not trying to be critical but I don't want to see anyone hurt: please advise if my train of thought isn't credible?

Cheers!

P.S. I checked the old IMR load data and it shows a MAX of 3.5 gr 700-X with a 148 gr wadcutter. Just trying to include all relevant data as I find it.

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Old 01-11-2021, 09:01 PM
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Glad that you want everyone to stay safe............ a great idea.

So in order to make loaders even safer.................

Don't even open up or look at the Speer "Atomic" #8 loading data for the 148 BBwc loads !!
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Old 01-11-2021, 09:10 PM
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I'm a little hesitant to accept on its face the premise that there is an OVER 50% SAFE maximum "usable range" for ANY POWDER, much less one as fast as 700-X, specifically with a wadcutter. I'm comparing 2.5 vs. 4.0 gr here.

Hodgdons has a MAX of 3.7 gr for 38 Special, a 4.0 gr MAX for 38 Special +P and a START of 4.5 gr for 357 Magnum for the same Hornady 158gr XTP, and that last one's at 21,900 PSI in 357 Magnum brass. A 148gr wadcutter takes up a significantly greater amount of room in 38 Special brass than that 158gr XTP. That means increased pressure.

I'm not trying to be critical but I don't want to see anyone hurt: please advise if my train of thought isn't credible?

Cheers!

P.S. I checked the old IMR load data and it shows a MAX of 3.5 gr 700-X with a 148 gr wadcutter. Just trying to include all relevant data as I find it.
OK, so then eliminating the +P upper end of the range and narrowing the range it is still actually 2.7gr-3.7gr (as I said, to be VERIFIED from good printed and online sources) that still is a full 1gr spread. So setting up the measure for 3.2gr - with expected .1gr +/- variation you're still in the 3.1gr-3.3gr range and well in the middle of what is safe. So my point about not most people not needing to resort to "dipping" still seems valid.
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Old 01-11-2021, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Nevada Ed View Post
Glad that you want everyone to stay safe............ a great idea.

So in order to make loaders even safer.................

Don't even open up or look at the Speer "Atomic" #8 loading data for the 148 BBwc loads !!
OK: you've got my attention.

Just how far do they go? Would Elmer Keith approve?
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Old 01-11-2021, 09:51 PM
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You didn't say what type of WC are you using ? Is it a hollow base , double end , bevel base etc ? I would have to do a " ladder " work up . Start @ 2.5 grs , then 2.7 and a max of 3.0 grs . Remember , you're looking for accuracy , not velocity . Your gun will tell you what it likes best . Have fun , Regards Paul
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Old 01-11-2021, 11:56 PM
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Speer #10 has 4 grains of 700x MAX for 148 bbwc AND 2.9 MAX for hbwc in revolver AND 2.8 MAX for s&w 52's. That isn.t hot. The 4 grain is going 924 and the the 2.9 is 791.xxxxxxxxx HORNADY Third Edition list their hbwc at 3.5 of 700x at 950. That is too fast for a hbwc to stay together or be accurate. I have blown the base off of wad cutters on purpose trying to see what they will stand. Look in side the case. That is what is left of a Remington hbwc. 850 is about the limit.
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Old 01-12-2021, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Racer X View Post
Do you have a procedure to settle the powder? I ended up with a pound of 800x, and I am brand new at reloading. Will probably end up in medium 10mm loads.
Very low tech. I rapidly tap the metal base of my rcbs measure with a nylon mallet 15-20 times, then I drop and measure several times to check load for constancy. After that I check weight every 10th round or so. Inside the measure I have a baffle, I forget who makes it, that seems to help flow be more consistent. You can see the baffle in the bottom of the pic. FYI my Coastie son made me the red powder measure stand from scrap metal.
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Old 01-12-2021, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by 4barrel View Post
Speer #10 has 4 grains of 700x MAX for 148 bbwc AND 2.9 MAX for hbwc in revolver AND 2.8 MAX for s&w 52's. That isn.t hot. The 4 grain is going 924 and the the 2.9 is 791.xxxxxxxxx HORNADY Third Edition list their hbwc at 3.5 of 700x at 950. That is too fast for a hbwc to stay together or be accurate. I have blown the base off of wad cutters on purpose trying to see what they will stand. Look in side the case. That is what is left of a Remington hbwc. 850 is about the limit.
A Big 10-4 on that.

I stop at 820 fps in my J frame snub nose at a +P loading ?
A standard full load of Bullseye does 757 with a BBwc, that according to Lucky Gunner,
will go through 18-20" of Gel. and is plenty for me.

Remember that those Speer loads are shot out of a "K" frame
in order to get those 900 fps readings.
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Old 01-12-2021, 02:01 PM
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Actually, those ATOMIC Speer loads Ed was referring to earlier were often considered to be limited to the 38/44 N-Frames of yore...!
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Old 01-12-2021, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by STORMINORMAN View Post
Actually, those ATOMIC Speer loads Ed was referring to earlier were often considered to be limited to the 38/44 N-Frames of yore...!
Maybe that is why the starting loads in that manual are a full or +P loading in my little, small J frame !!

Lots of loading data but it needs to be taken with some salt and calls for "Working up", big time.

I think, back in those days, they "Rolled" more than just ammo.
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Old 01-14-2021, 05:53 PM
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I loaded 50 .38 Special 148 Grain HBWC with 2.4 Grains of 700X today. I will try them out in my Model 14 PPC and the Model 52 to see how they do. Will give a progress report after tomorrow's session.
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Old 01-15-2021, 01:15 PM
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I loaded 50 .38 Special 148 Grain HBWC with 2.4 Grains of 700X today. I will try them out in my Model 14 PPC and the Model 52 to see how they do. Will give a progress report after tomorrow's session.
Shot the above load this morning. Easy on the gun and felt recoil very tame. I am thinking of increasing the load by two tenths or so. The group was about twice as large and my 3.0 grains of Bullseye loading with the same bullet.

As an aside an older range patron brought in 10 boxes of Remington 1498 grain .38 Special Match Loadings from the late 50's or early 60's the address on the boxes did not have a Zip Code on them. I am getting five boxes of them to try in my 52-1.
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Old 01-18-2021, 09:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nbedford View Post
Just about everything is slower than Bullseye.
Until you load with Titewad....
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