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Old 05-26-2018, 05:59 PM
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Default Loading down practice ammo?

Like most handguns my Springfield Armoury 1911 .45 has a particular load it “likes”. 200 gn plated flat point at between 175 and 180 PF with Tightgroup powder. This is my competition load.

But I also have a very large supply of 230 gn LRN bullets I like to use in practice as they coat about 6 cents each less to purchase. The trouble is I cannot find a powder/weight combination that makes them as accurate at the 200 gn ones. I can’t even find a load with TG that approaches decent accuracy and the best I can do (using 231) is 4 out of 5 in the A zone at 12 meters and a flyer, usually low and out near the C/D zone line. (It is not often I get out of the A zone with my competition load, and then not by much).

It has been suggested to me that I load these down to around 160 PF for practice and that I would “not notice the difference when shooting 170+ PF loads”.

I have two issues with this suggestion. First I believe I should be practicing with the most accurate load in my gun. Second I have always believed in shooting in practice what I will shoot “seriously”, to the point that when I carried on duty and shot in competition a revolver I always loaded my ammo to +P levels.

I do have a third option for practice, casting and using a similar 200 gn lead flat point, but it has been many years since I felt the time it takes to cast up bullets is worth less than the cost of buying them.

Any thoughts?

Last edited by Kiwi cop; 05-26-2018 at 07:39 PM.
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:58 PM
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Default You will probably get the most accuracy.....

...by lobbing a soft, heavy bullet with fast to medium powder at a low velocity. I have a few contentions about the 'practice with what you carry' thing. If you have PF requirements, then you may be stuck.

I shoot all kinds of rounds. For self defense practice I use loads similar to what I get from commercial bullets. Not much difference, there.

I can't AFFORD to shoot what I carry.

It's very possible that you won't get the most accurate shots with your duty load. I use target loads for target. SD practice is different from target practice.

I've heard people say that ACCURACY is their most important consideration in an SD gun. I say that a 1/2" spread at 10 yards in defensive situations compared to a 1/4" spread at 10 yards in target shooting isn't going to make a lot of difference.
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Old 05-26-2018, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by rwsmith View Post
...by lobbing a soft, heavy bullet with fast to medium powder at a low velocity. I have a few contentions about the 'practice with what you carry' thing. If you have PF requirements, then you may be stuck.

I shoot all kinds of rounds. For self defense practice I use loads similar to what I get from commercial bullets. Not much difference, there.

I can't AFFORD to shoot what I carry.

It's very possible that you won't get the most accurate shots with your duty load. I use target loads for target. SD practice is different from target practice.

I've heard people say that ACCURACY is their most important consideration in an SD gun. I say that a 1/2" spread at 10 yards in defensive situations compared to a 1/4" spread at 10 yards in target shooting isn't going to make a lot of difference.
PF in competition is the main issue for me. Having had the "pleasure" of having to shoot ".45 acp minor" for a weekend due to a chrono reading I like to have a little up my sleeve as insurance.

I'm not looking for olympic accuracy from my loads, just realistic competition accuracy, 90% + A zone hits out to 15 meters.

After posting the OP I recalled some swaged 200 gn LSWC .45 bullets I had got as a bonus in a deal a few years ago sitting on the shelf under my bench. I went out and loaded 100 of them to try out with my usual 200 gn Tightgroup load. I ended up discarding about 1 in 3 as they were undersized for my .45 ACP cases, even after running the case back into the sizing die after powder charging.

If they do work out I will try casting a few. I picked ups new 6 cavity 200 gn LSWC mould recently so noting to loose.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:23 PM
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How about 7.7 cents each for 200gr RNFP cast bullets?
Summers Enterprises sells them at $35 for 500 per box.
They will ship you up to four 500 count boxes in one $14 flat rate box.
So that is 2000 of them for $154 = 7.7 cents each.
Would that work for you?
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Old 05-26-2018, 10:46 PM
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I always use the same load for practice that I use in a match. My thought is that if I used something else, it would negate much of the reason for practice. It's more expensive, but shooting USPSA Open isn't for the faint of pocketbook anyway, everything is a consumable.
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Old 05-26-2018, 10:48 PM
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How about 7.7 cents each for 200gr RNFP cast bullets?
Summers Enterprises sells them at $35 for 500 per box.
They will ship you up to four 500 count boxes in one $14 flat rate box.
So that is 2000 of them for $154 = 7.7 cents each.
Would that work for you?
I don't think flat rate boxes work for New Zealand.
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Old 05-26-2018, 10:55 PM
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I don't think flat rate boxes work for New Zealand.
LOL! I didn't notice that the OP was from down under.
Too bad. Shipping to New Zealand would probably be horrendous.
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Old 05-27-2018, 02:10 AM
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I’be remembered why I stopped loading those swayed bullets. About 3 in 10 go sideways through the paper at 10 meters.

Will now probably try that new bullet mould this week. I have the pot full of lead and just need 20 minutes or so to get it to run. Will see what they mic out at and may even try them unsized. If they fly true it could be the answer. At least I can recast those LRN that I’m having issues with

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Old 05-28-2018, 11:28 AM
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Keep the 200FP for match and use ANY bullet weight and speed
for practice as long as it matches your match load's POA.

If it works the action and hits "Black" I don't mind if a practice load is at 125PF!
Although a lot of my loads in pistols do well in the 133pf areas.

I have one 124 plated HP for my 5" 9mm that is in the 133 area and
it shots well with FOUR powders !!

Sometimes you just need to buy a powder that cost a little more
for accurate target loads than that skimpy TG match load.

Good lock.
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Old 05-28-2018, 03:37 PM
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I looked in my load book and 4.8-5.1 gr of Titegroup should give you about the same power factor as the 200 gr.

I've always used the same charge of whatever powder I was using for jacketed, lead or plated and the difference between that and 200 or 230 grain didn't seem to matter.

Somewhere around 6.5 gr of Unique/230 ball used to be real close to hardball equivalent.

I have to wonder if the issue is the bullets rather than the powder? Undersize, too soft, cast in the wrong phase of the moon?

Possibly sell off the large supply and try something else?
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Old 05-28-2018, 10:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WR Moore View Post
I looked in my load book and 4.8-5.1 gr of Titegroup should give you about the same power factor as the 200 gr.

I've always used the same charge of whatever powder I was using for jacketed, lead or plated and the difference between that and 200 or 230 grain didn't seem to matter.

Somewhere around 6.5 gr of Unique/230 ball used to be real close to hardball equivalent.

I have to wonder if the issue is the bullets rather than the powder? Undersize, too soft, cast in the wrong phase of the moon?

Possibly sell off the large supply and try something else?
I have an auto drum bushing set up for 5 gn TG. I may go out tot he man cave and load up a few rounds to see what happens.

Tried to cast some 200 gn SWC rounds today. Heated up the pot, set up a cloth to catch the bullets as they fell from the mould, put the mould on to warm up, then the spout wouldn't pour. Something there is blocked up
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Old 05-30-2018, 01:34 AM
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Ran the micrometer across my different projectiles today.

The plated ones are .4515”. Like I said above, these shoot perfectly in my SA pistol.

The LRN were supposed to be sized .451-.452. 5 grabbed at random from a container all mic’d at .4505. The swagged SWC ones were all over the place, from .4479 - .4515.

As for my casting lead and trying them, turned the pot on yesterday and it wouldn’t pour. It must be more than 20 years now since I used anything but commercial rounds so the stuff has been sitting in the bottom of the pot for all that time. A few drips came outthen nothing. Tipped the lead into some moulds and today I ran a very small drill bit through the spout to open it up. Just waiting for the lead to melt down from the ingots to start casting.

Edit: I have 50 primed cases ready to go on the bench. I cast 100 of the 200gn LSW bullets this evening and 10 mic’d out at a high of .4525 to a low of .4515 with 7 out of the 10 right on .452. My only container of Lee Alox lube split wide open when I went to lube them, but I got enough into the container to coat the bullets. Will load them tomorrow and probably shoot them at some time between now and Monday (CAS shoot on this weekend so most of the ranges are out of bounds, but I’ll sneak in).

Last edited by Kiwi cop; 05-30-2018 at 02:50 AM.
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Old 05-30-2018, 02:30 AM
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Default Most accurate load in 9mm....

It was recommended to me to use a heavy bullet and a low charge of Acc #7 powder. I don't know if it would carry over into .45, but it was by far the most accurate load I've tried. It was enough to work the action and I felt like I could have reduced the load even more if I thought it would help. I tried several levels and they were all great. I didn't feel the need to tinker with it much.
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Old 05-30-2018, 02:14 PM
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IMO, there is very little diff between 160pf & 170pf, most shooter just will not notice which is which. Personally, I find the recoil impulse of TG slightly more than WST. I thought it was me but have given my 170pf 45 loads to others to try & they feel it shoots softer. Exact same pf, just softer recoil impulse.
I like to keep it simple & shoot the same ammo for practice as a match. I have used 200, 230 & 255gr for idpa 170pf & all feel about the same running the gun at speed.
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