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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Darksider's Den (Moderators: Marshal Halloway, Major 2, Capt Quirk)  |  Topic: Full Power 45 Colt Loads 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Full Power 45 Colt Loads  (Read 16084 times)
Dave T
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« Reply #50 on: June 06, 2016, 10:10:24 am »

I went the route of using a compression die.

Never seen or heard of a "compression die". Can you tell me more about this?

Dave
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« Reply #51 on: June 06, 2016, 12:21:47 pm »

Track of the Wolf sells compresion dies.  I have purchased some for 45-70 and 38-55 from them.  It is basically the body for an expanding die with an adjustable plug.  You adjust the plug to compress the powder to the level you want (depth of bullet).
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Grapeshot
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« Reply #52 on: June 26, 2016, 06:35:53 pm »

I just read 4foD post: [ I should have specified in my initial post that I'm interested in duplicating full powder civilian ammo. That's confusing enough without adding in the military's inability to settle on what cartridge they were going to shoot (lol).]



The Civilian max charge started out as 40 grains of an undetermined grade of Black Powder.  Then Remington/UMC as well as Winchester dropped the charge to 35 grains of BP pushing a 250 to 255 grain hollow based/cup based swaged conical bullet.

The Military however dropped their charge for the .45 Colt to 30 grains of 2Fg below a one-quarter inch cork wad under a 250/255 grain lead bullet.

The Army then opted for the Schofield round and charged them with 28 to 30 grains of 2Fg and a 230 grain HB bullet.
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« Reply #53 on: November 28, 2017, 03:25:16 pm »

Hello,

I have the RCBS 45-270-SA (285gr) mold...
Would this bullet be too heavy for an 1883 Colt SAA?
If this seems reasonable, how much black powder could be safely used, and should the bullet be fairly soft, maybe not too tight or heavily crimped? 25gr with a wad?
Or would a 200gr bullet with say 30gr of 3F be a safer bet?

Thanks!

Gil.
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medic15al
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« Reply #54 on: November 28, 2017, 03:39:37 pm »

Welcome to CASS forum!

With an 1883 I would personally go with a 200 grn with 30 grains of 2FG BP.

I am sure you had the SAA checked for safe operation and would use this load to go easy on the revolver of that age. No use in stressing the old gal.

Pics of the revolver would be welcomed!    Grin

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greyhawk
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« Reply #55 on: November 28, 2017, 07:25:36 pm »

Holy Crap My Good Drydock!

I had read of the older definitions, but did not realize that "pistol" grade was closer to 4F!

Have you ever tried loading 4F into pistol cartridges,  or do you have knowledge of anyone beside Elemr Kieth who did?

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I have a friend uses FFFFg in his 357 Lightening - 357 magnum makes a durn fine blackpowder round - 21 grains weight and MR LEE's 158 grain RNFP boolit - have not chronoed it but sounds just nice.
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greyhawk
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« Reply #56 on: November 28, 2017, 07:28:07 pm »

If you go back into the old documentation, ie pre ww1, you will find references to the various granulations in terms of "Musket" "Rifle" "Pistol" .  There are others, but I tried to determine what those meant, and how they correspond to the modern "F" designations.  I believe the modern ideas of "2F in 40 caliber and above" et al, came about in the 1950s from early ML reinactors, and it somehow became entrenched as "Old Knowledge"  But like so much BP info from that era, (Cleaning, fouling, lubricant, use of water) it's wrong.

I cannot prove it, but a theory of mine is that someone back in the 50s decided to call 4f "Priming" powder for his flintlock.  This is apocryphal,  as Flintlocks were primed with whatever powder was in the paper cartridge or powder horn of the user.  Few if any Flintlock users, and certainly NO military, ever carried a separate priming powder.  But this somehow got accepted as "Truth".  Well then, what is this "Pistol" grade stuff?  Well that must  have been 3f.  And so on.  Then the johnny come lately cartridge guys accepted that the old frontstuffers must know what they're talking about . . .

Drydock - just interested in how, where, and when, use of water is wrong??  The best blackpowder solvent /cleaning fluid and its free !!!
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gilgsn
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« Reply #57 on: November 29, 2017, 05:10:06 am »

Thanks Medic. No pictures yet, I just put a hold on it...

Gil.
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Dick Dastardly
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« Reply #58 on: December 02, 2017, 01:10:18 pm »

Moosemilk is my chosen cleaner/solvent/lubricator/rust preventer.  The water does the work and the Ballistol does the rest.  Moosemilk is colloidal suspension of one part Ballistol to Ten parts water.  This is what I spritz my bores with before I tug the Bore Snake thru.

DD-MDA
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« Reply #59 on: January 20, 2018, 11:22:04 pm »

Historically speaking, there have been several different .45 Colt b.p. loadings in boxer primed cases over the years.
.........28 grs., 35 grs., 38 grs., 40 grs.

Awhile back I purchased some U.M.C. headstamped .45 Colt b.p. ammunition. I dissected the cartridges and found that three of them contained the 35 gr charge and the rest, 40 grs.  The powder had a polished appearance and screening determined that it was FFG granulation
The 40 gr charges in the SHBP (Solid Head Button Pocket aka balloon head) cases required .20" of compression.
Average velocity in a 7 1/2" barrel was 932 f.p.s.
w44wcf

I’ve dug 35 gr charges of  2fg BP out of 45 Colt case sand I don’t know how it could be done with out damaging the individual granuals.
For me the dug out powder (GOEX) broke up to dust mostly finer than 4 fg, true dust.  So I do believe the velocity achieved in the 7 ½ “ barrel loading the dust back into those original cases.

As to the original poster question about  duplicating maximum power original 45 Colt loads.  I think the problem is trying to determine if there was one original load.  I do believe a 40 gr charge was tried by the US Cavlery during initial load development  but it was quickly deemed too hard on the Colt SAA and the shooter.  So the charge was reduced and changed many times there after.  I would say that there was no original load, just a wide variety of loads all tried and some accepted for use by the government.

I load 35 gr of 2 fg GOEX in Starline minimum trim to length brass  with  CCI 350 mag primers and a cast 20:1 alloy 261 gr bullet with SPG lube.  I get a average velocity in an Ruger NV 5.5” barrel of  817 fps.
Just for information using the same components listed above but swapping the BP for 9.0 grs (.2 under max) Hodgdon CFE Pistol got me 1040 fps.

So I think any powder charge 35 grs up to 40 grs could be called your maximum.

I’ve seen  a uTube video of  45 Colt 7 ½” SAA chron’’ng  1000 fps for some shots with 40 gr of BP.

Unless you want to duplex a BP load with some smokeless the MV you get with your revolver with what ever charge of BP you use is fixed by the gun it’s self.  No 2 guns will launch the same load to the same MV.

So what’s like to load up a S&W X frame 460s&w with 2 fg BP?  Should make for a nice big cloud of smoke.  Wish I had one of those.
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Dick Dastardly
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« Reply #60 on: January 22, 2018, 06:05:01 pm »

The loads you chose to load depend on your mission.  If it's deer hunting, then go for the maximum.  If you want the absolute most WOWS at a SASS match, go with the maximum.  But, if you are in the game for speed and accuracy, go for a manageable recoil load that delivers consistent velocities and known accuracy.  With Holy Black, you do have options with this venerable old cartridge and the guns chambered for it.  If your gun is vintage old, respect the old gal and load down a bit.  If your gun is a modern Ruger, then stuff in all the Holy Black you can and the gun will only ask for more.

DD-MDA
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Dave T
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« Reply #61 on: January 24, 2018, 12:48:42 pm »

Dick, my interest in finding the "original" performance was to experience what it was like shooting a 45 Colt SAA in the last quarter of the 19th Century. I gave up competing back in '94 and just want to feel the power and appeal of the original when I drag my busted up self out to the range. (smile)

Dave
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Drydock
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« Reply #62 on: January 24, 2018, 03:11:10 pm »

My reference was to so many ot those BP shooters not knowing HOW or even IF to use water.  IE water causes rust, right?  Better to use some more modern wonder solvent, right? 

Phoohy!  Water is the best and only thing I use to clean up a BP fouled gun.
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« Reply #63 on: January 24, 2018, 03:41:56 pm »

I agree Sir Drydock,

Water does the work.  I mix in 1 part Ballistol with 10 parts water because the residual mix leaves a protective coating of lubricant/rust preventive.  But, you're absolutely correct about the water.  Water is the solvent of choice for cleaning bp fouled guns.  The Ballistol is there only for the reasons stated above.

DD-MDA
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greyhawk
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« Reply #64 on: January 24, 2018, 09:39:47 pm »

My reference was to so many ot those BP shooters not knowing HOW or even IF to use water.  IE water causes rust, right?  Better to use some more modern wonder solvent, right? 

Phoohy!  Water is the best and only thing I use to clean up a BP fouled gun.


Thanks for clarifying   - just the way you wrote that sentence it looked like you meant water was  "old knowledge" and wrong -----I see new shooters spend a lot of cash on fancy packaged cleaners and on commercial lubes that stink like horse liniment - cash they would be better most times spent on powder and caps. Simple cleaners and simple lubes work. This is not rocket science ........well - it kinda is I guess but very old rocket science -   
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« Reply #65 on: February 23, 2018, 07:25:16 pm »

I've always been attracted by the idea of shooting original performance ammo from guns of the black powder cartridge era and I put a lot of effort into accomplishing that years ago.

Research indicated the original load was with FFg but I couldn't get enough of that granulation in modern, solid head cases to duplicate the oft quoted original performance of 910 fps. What I came up with was a very compressed FFFg load of 36g behind a 255g RNFP. From a 7-1/2" 1st Gen Colt I got average velocities ranging from 907 fps to 914 fps, depending on the time of the year (outside temp).

Since this time around I'm starting from stretch with different guns, different bullets, even different brass (brand-new Starline cases) so before I re-invent the wheel (LOL) I thought I'd ask what folks here do for full power 45 Colt ammunition. I'd be grateful for any and all info you're willing to pass on.

Thanks in advance,
Dave



It appears that I'm about 16 months behind the original post.  I did try the 40 grains of 2Fg.  I weighed each charge, dropped it down a 30 inch drop tube, and compressed it with a compression die enough to seat a "Big Lube" 250 grain RFN bullet up to the crimp groove.  I crimped in a crimp die.  Now, before I got that far I opened the flash hole IAW Spence Wolfe's directions to 3/32nd inch and used a Winchester Large Magnum pistol primer.  When I fired them in my EMF Dakota with a 7.5 inch barrel I turned the world upside down.  The concussion was intense, fire an smoke belched from the muzzle and the recoil was a bit stiff.  People backed away from me and the timer was standing behind me with his arm outstretched and his head was turned away from me.  Man was that fun.
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« Reply #66 on: February 23, 2018, 07:27:51 pm »

Them ole' timers knew a thing or two about a combat cartridge, eh?
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Dick Dastardly
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« Reply #67 on: February 24, 2018, 04:15:09 pm »

Combat cartridge = power on the pill to the enemy person.  Mostly we are combating steel reactive varmints and the dude with the timer is only watching for safety.  The spotters are watching, thru the smoke, for misses.  If it's a hit, it's a hit.  If he thinks it's a miss, it's a hit.  Only if he sees a miss is it a miss.  The smoke and fog of war goes to the shooter.

Choose your mission and the venerable old 45 Colt will deliver what you ask.  All the way from C45Spl to Schofield to 45 Colt, there's a load to fulfill your mission.  For SASS matches I choose the Colt 1860 open tops with Kirst Konverter cylinders and ejectors.  They point the best in my hands, stay on target and satisfy any smoke rule.  C45Spl, standard WLP primers, 1.3 cc of Holy Black under a J/P 45-200 Big Lube® bullet does my work.

DD-MDA
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« Reply #68 on: February 24, 2018, 04:21:21 pm »

I shoot them now for historical recreation as close to the original specs as possible. Im wanting some .45 Schofeld cases and some 230 grain bullets as well to play with. (45 U.S. Army with the smaller Colt rims.)
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« Reply #69 on: April 28, 2018, 02:16:52 pm »

I've always been attracted by the idea of shooting original performance ammo from guns of the black powder cartridge era and I put a lot of effort into accomplishing that years ago.

Research indicated the original load was with FFg but I couldn't get enough of that granulation in modern, solid head cases to duplicate the oft quoted original performance of 910 fps. What I came up with was a very compressed FFFg load of 36g behind a 255g RNFP. From a 7-1/2" 1st Gen Colt I got average velocities ranging from 907 fps to 914 fps, depending on the time of the year (outside temp).

Since this time around I'm starting from stretch with different guns, different bullets, even different brass (brand-new Starline cases) so before I re-invent the wheel (LOL) I thought I'd ask what folks here do for full power 45 Colt ammunition. I'd be grateful for any and all info you're willing to pass on.

Thanks in advance,
Dave



Well, let me be amongst the few that tell you this.  After reading Pat & Spence Wolfe's book on reloading the .45/70 for original Trapdoor Rifles and Carbines, I came across a chapter in that book about reloading the .45 Colt to Mil Spec.  This was using 2Fg, a 40grain, weighed charge.  Dropped down a 30 inch drop tube and compressed with a compression die enough to use a 250 - 255 grain cast lead bullet.  He also opened up the flash hole to 3/32nds of an inch and lit the charge off with a Winchester Large Magnum Pistol Primer.  Having done all that, you will not be disappointed with the muzzle blast or the recoil.  When I used that load, people would draw back from the firing line when I got up there to shoot.
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« Reply #70 on: May 01, 2018, 08:40:23 am »

Well, let me be amongst the few that tell you this.  After reading Pat & Spence Wolfe's book on reloading the .45/70 for original Trapdoor Rifles and Carbines, I came across a chapter in that book about reloading the .45 Colt to Mil Spec. When I used that load, people would draw back from the firing line when I got up there to shoot.

 Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin----LOL, Love it!!!! Smiley
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« Reply #71 on: May 01, 2018, 10:13:17 am »

When I used that load, people would draw back from the firing line when I got up there to shoot.

LOL - Back in the late 1980s and early 1990s, when I was shooting with the Los Vaqueros CAS club out of Tucson, I shot 35-36 grains of FFFg behind a 255g bullet. When I stepped up to shoot everyone backed away, including the timer. More often than not, shooting my 1883 7-1/2" Cavalry Colt, I would knock over a couple of the pistol targets (they weren't knockdowns) and the timers always asked me why I had to shoot such heavy loads. My answer was always the same: I was shooting original 1880s Colts and wanted to know what it was really like to shoot them back in the day. It was great fun and quite an experience.

Dave
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Dave T
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« Reply #72 on: May 01, 2018, 10:39:45 am »

As an up-date to my original topic and question, I have chronographed some Black MZ loads and one is very close in performance, from my 7-1/2" USFA revolver, to the performance I got from 35g-36g of FFFg in my 1883 vintage 7-1/2" Colt 25 years ago. That BP load produced an average velocity of 907 fps with a 255g bullet. Last week I got 916 fps with a 256g bullet over 2.2cc of BlackMZ.

I now have a load with a modern substitute that delivers "full power 45 Colt" performance. I need to refine my loading technique to get the Extreme Spread down to a more acceptable level (I'm not consistant scooping powder) but improving that will keep me off the streets at night. (smiley face goes here)

Dave
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« Reply #73 on: May 05, 2018, 09:04:41 pm »

As an up-date to my original topic and question, I have chronographed some Black MZ loads and one is very close in performance, from my 7-1/2" USFA revolver, to the performance I got from 35g-36g of FFFg in my 1883 vintage 7-1/2" Colt 25 years ago. That BP load produced an average velocity of 907 fps with a 255g bullet. Last week I got 916 fps with a 256g bullet over 2.2cc of BlackMZ.

I now have a load with a modern substitute that delivers "full power 45 Colt" performance. I need to refine my loading technique to get the Extreme Spread down to a more acceptable level (I'm not consistant scooping powder) but improving that will keep me off the streets at night. (smiley face goes here)

Dave

If you can not be consistent, have you tried weighing your scooped powder charge and use a powder measure like the RCBS Uniflow Powder Measure and set the volume to throw the same weight of your powder?  That is what I did.  YMMV.
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« Reply #74 on: May 05, 2018, 09:28:26 pm »

Back when I was shooting CAS with BP loads I found a Pacific Pistol Powder Measure, with a brass hopper and brass rotors. I took one of the smaller rotors and drilled it out gradually until it dropped my preferred charge of FFFg. That measure got sold (or maybe given away, I don't remember which) when I got out of CAS and those old guns.

Now that I'm dabbling in it again I just found a vintage Pacific Pistol Powder measure with several rotors on eBay and bought it. Kind of like going home again. (big smiley face goes here)

Dave
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