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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Powder Room - CAS reloading (Moderator: Marshal Halloway)  |  Topic: reloading 255 gr. .45 Long Colt loads 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: reloading 255 gr. .45 Long Colt loads  (Read 5120 times)
Doug.38PR
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« on: November 15, 2011, 02:28:59 am »


I've got 50 cartridges ready to reload.  I've got Hornandy 255 gr lead bullets.  BUT I'm trying to figure out what kind of charge to give them.   The two powders I have on hand are Power Pistol and Unique.  From what I've read in both my manuels, Unique (strange as it may seem) appears to be the superior powder giving slightly higher velocity.
HOWEVER, the loading recommendations between both manuels for the same bullet (?) are quite different.  Hornandy has a MAXIMUM load of 7.0 grains of Unique BUT the Speer manuel has a STARTING load of 7.7 grains of Unique and a maximum of 8.5 grains of Unique.

I keep looking at the Speer bullet in the manuel and the Honrnady Bullet.  Both appear to be lead.  Both are 255 grains....The sectional density of the Hornandy is 0.177 and the Speer 0.165.  The configurations are slightly different.   The Speer one looks a little longer.  I'm trying to decide if it's wise to use Speer data on a different brand (and configuration) bullet (hornandy.)

I'd like to make a batch of maximum loads...or near maximum (whichever that may be).  The rest for standard shooting


The gun I will be using is a 7 inch Uberti Schofield chambered for .45 Long Colt.
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NCOWS
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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2011, 03:02:45 am »

I don't own a Schofield, and therefore not an expert.  BUT, the Schofield is a hinged frame design and my instincts would encourage caution.  I'd feel more comfortable at load levels at or below factory specs.
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2011, 06:48:49 pm »

If you're loading for practice rounds then you ought to back off from the max load by a lot.
If you're loading for hunting then contact both the gun maker and powder maker and get see what they suggest.
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cpt dan blodgett
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2011, 06:50:57 pm »

Are the manuals in question close to the same dates?  Load data seems to change over time.  Either folks are getting smarter or perhaps formulation of powders have been modified.

I would not overload the schofield as it is a somewhat weaker revolver than a solid frame colt or clone.
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Doug.38PR
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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2011, 08:27:04 pm »

both manuels were bought within a year of each other.  Speer is the 14th edition. The Hornandy is the 7th
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Doug.38PR
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« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2011, 11:22:42 pm »

I went ahead and loaded a box of 50 with 6.8 grains of Unique.

I also loaded an additional round with the same AND a 200 gr LSWC Speer round with 8.5 grains of Unique.  Took both rounds out and put them both through my Uberti Schofield....I was surprised.  I didn't feel once bit of difference.  Even though the Speer round was a slightly lighter bullet, it still had a good deal more of powder behind it, but I couldn't feel any difference.
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2011, 06:42:54 pm »

Heavy bullet means more recoil.
More powder/higher velocity means more recoil.
It is very easy to get the same recoil from a lighter bullet at higher velocity as a heavier bullet with lower velocity.
It's all physics.
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Virginia Gentleman
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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2011, 11:12:14 am »

The modern replicas of the S&W Schofields while built to take smokeless powder with modern steel alloys should still probably be fed a diet of Cowboy Action Level loads and not near top end SAA standard pressure loads.  NEVER EVER......EVER even think about using Ruger/TC load data in these guns as you will have a mini hand grenade go off when you pull the trigger.  I have shot SAAMI spec factory and handloads in my guns and got nothing but more recoil and somewhat less accuracy as a result. No harm to the brass, me or the gun, but it was not worth putting the extra strain in the equation.  My favorite CAS level .45 Colt load is 5.0 grains of Clays (NOT UNIVERSAL CLAYS) with a 250 grain LRNFP with either Winchester or Remington standard large pistol primers.  Velocity is about 710 fps and easy on me, the brass and the gun.  
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rickk
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« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2011, 09:07:55 am »

For what it's worth, Unique was reformulated a few years ago to make it burn cleaner. This happened about the time they switched from the cardboard containers to the plastic bottles There seems to be ongoing disagreement about whether or not the older load data needed to change as a result of the new formulation.

Personally, I use Unique a heck of a lot. It is very versatile, and can be used in just about any handgun caliber. However, it would not be my first choice for a hotter load in any caliber. I can't specifically comment on 45 colt because it is the one caliber that I only load with BP, but in other pistol calibers I would be looking for a slower burning powder to get maximum velocity with minimum peak pressure.

My first look for maximum velocity loads would be for data involving H110 or IMR 4227. Some people are partial to WW296 instead of H110, but that might be a Chevy verses Ford thing. Be careful that the load data is not mean specifically for Ruger's or TC Contenders or Rifles Only.

One the flip side, for CAS shooting, target shooting and plinking Unique is an awesome choice for the 45 Colt. It is the powder they used at the beginning of time in them.  For lighter loads it is great. It has a wide tolerance for not filling the case. When one backs it down too far, ignition will get a bit erratic. At that point in time, go up a half grain or so and it is usually fine. I personally use only Magnum powder with the lighter loads of Unique, as it allows one to get consistent ignition when working on the edge of too light a load.

Trying different things is fun ;-)
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Popa Kapoff
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« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2012, 02:43:08 pm »

The 255gr Hornady's are .454 dia. The only Speers I could find wher 250 gr with a .452 dia.
 The large diameter means higher presure. If you load the round with more powder you will have a very high pressure this would be bad.

Also make sure you are not reading the Ruger and Tc data they are stronger built and can handle the stress.
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Virginia Gentleman
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« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2012, 03:52:01 pm »

Again, stick with the lower velocity Cowboy loads as they will not stress the gun which is expensive to fix if something goes wrong.
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Southpaw
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« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2012, 06:13:12 pm »

I load 7.0 grains Unique with 255 RNFP and 7.5 grains with 200 gr RNFP. I have found these to be potent and safe loads for all my Ubertis..............Southpaw
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Virginia Gentleman
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« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2012, 08:25:57 pm »

Do you shoot them out of your Schofield?
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2012, 09:34:48 pm »

Off the top of my head, the .45 S&W used a 230 gr bullet at about 750 fps. If I were using a S&W clone I'd stick real close to that load as a maximum and feel real good with it.
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Virginia Gentleman
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« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2013, 03:41:51 pm »

If the S&W Clone was chambered for .45 Colt, they are regulated for that cartridge that uses a 250-255 grain bullet which would probably give better accuracy than the 230 grainer.
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #15 on: January 05, 2013, 07:01:42 pm »

But that's not necessarily always true. I have two Colt SAA, they shoot much better with a 200 gr RNFP Bullet.
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Virginia Gentleman
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« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2013, 09:16:20 pm »

As a rule that is how the sights are set up or sometimes taller for that would allow even heavier bullets than 255 grains so they can be filed down.  Guns and shooters may indeed vary. Grin
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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Powder Room - CAS reloading (Moderator: Marshal Halloway)  |  Topic: reloading 255 gr. .45 Long Colt loads « previous next »
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