Author Topic: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC  (Read 309 times)

Offline spencer_pa

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Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« on: July 21, 2019, 03:07:59 pm »
Newbie reloader here with a few simple questions.

1. I want to load 45 colt for cowboy shooting in my replica rifle and revolvers. The Lyman 50th edition manual tells me to use Winchester cartridges, WLP primer, and a Lyman 452664 250 grain bullet.  Can I safely substitute Federal FD150 primers for the WLP primer (the reason is my Uberti 73 main spring has been tuned, resulting in a lighter hammer stroke -- Federals are softer)? I've been searching online for a few hours today trying to get a definitive answer to this question with no luck. This chart seems to suggest that this substitution is safe:  https://www.grafs.com/uploads/technical-resource-pdf-file/6.pdf

2. I'd like to reuse factory 45 colt cartridges I've shot once, but some are headstamped CBC, others are "*---*" (whatever the hell that is), Aguila, etc. Can I mix these?

3. How do reloaders track the number of times a cartridge has been reloaded? I have read that 5-8 reloads is typical before a cartridge expires.

Thanks!

Offline 1961MJS

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2019, 04:08:50 pm »
Newbie reloader here with a few simple questions.

1. I want to load 45 colt for cowboy shooting in my replica rifle and revolvers. The Lyman 50th edition manual tells me to use Winchester cartridges, WLP primer, and a Lyman 452664 250 grain bullet.  Can I safely substitute Federal FD150 primers for the WLP primer (the reason is my Uberti 73 main spring has been tuned, resulting in a lighter hammer stroke -- Federals are softer)? I've been searching online for a few hours today trying to get a definitive answer to this question with no luck. This chart seems to suggest that this substitution is safe:  https://www.grafs.com/uploads/technical-resource-pdf-file/6.pdf

2. I'd like to reuse factory 45 colt cartridges I've shot once, but some are headstamped CBC, others are "*---*" (whatever the hell that is), Aguila, etc. Can I mix these?

3. How do reloaders track the number of times a cartridge has been reloaded? I have read that 5-8 reloads is typical before a cartridge expires.

Thanks!

Hi

If you start with the lowest recommended charge and work your way up you should be fine with the powder charge and bullet weight.  I believe that the primer makes less of an impact on the accuracy and safety than does the powder charge and bullet weight.  There are two unsae things that can happen, the first is obviously too much powder or too fast powder and gun goes boom and comes apart.  The other less obvious one is that the lower powder / primer charge gets the bullet half way down the barrel and the next one makes the gun go boom and come apart. 

Accuracy depends on everything being the same on every shot.  Different brass will make a difference.  If you're shooting SASS, it almost certainly won't matter enough that you'll notice.  *---* is Starline, their brass is fine. 

Keeping your brass together throughout its life helps to work out how old the brass is.  This helps, but you also need to look at every piece of brass while you're reloading.

Later

Mike
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Offline Abilene

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2019, 05:50:11 pm »
I reload about a half dozen calibers for CAS and all are mixed brass.  I just eyeball them very well before loading.  I think I've gotten as many as 20 reloads out of some brass.   Avoiding over-belling the mouth will help.  Nickled brass will split more quickly, but I've gotten at least a half dozen from those.

As for primers, for the level of loads we are using for CAS it really doesn't matter.  It might make a few feet per second difference or a small pressure difference but like the mixed brass, you won't notice it.  As a new reloader, it is good that you are being careful and asking the questions, though.  A lot of people load lighter than the manuals say, but I don't.  A few of my .44 and .45 loads are at the bottom of the charts, and I load my .38's to the middle of the charts.  As the 250gr bullet provides a fair amount of recoil in the handgun, you may or may not want to use lighter bullets.  200gr are very popular in CAS with some folks going a lot lower.  The lighter bullets and lighter loads will dirty up your rifle, but not so much in the pistol.  There is a lot of good load data out there online.  Look at the powder manufacturers websites.  Hodgdon in particular has lots of good load variety for a number of powders and bullet weights.  Good luck.

Offline hp246

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2019, 08:00:14 pm »
This game isn't Bullseye or Precision rifle.  Mixed cases aren't going to be why you miss a 12 inch target at 15 yards.

 I mix my brass and don't bother counting how often cases are reloaded.  I inspect my brass before every reload.  If it is cracked or damaged, it goes in the recycle bin. 

I like to use Federal primers.  In a pinch, I will use Winchester primers.  Just personal preference.  I've never had an issue with primers in a rifle, even a slicked up rifle.  I have had issues in pistols that have had springs swapped. 

Offline spencer_pa

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2019, 08:04:56 pm »
Thanks everyone for your help and tips! I can buy with confidence now

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2019, 03:44:00 pm »

Aw heck.  I just gotta jump in and Pile on Too.  First a DISCLAIMER.  When you visit numerous shooting sites, your going to run into an awful lot of "OLD WIVES TALES."  Some of these pieces of miss-information have been repeated so often, many repeat them again as "GOSPEL."  If something you read doesn't make sense to you, it's probably wrong.  If it isn't explained so you can understand it, the explainer doesn't know what they are talking about.

The Lyman Manuel listen the components they tested with.  those were their results with those components.  Doesn't mean you can't use other components at all.  You CAN use the data with "other" components until you start pushing MAX load data.  Then you proceed with caution.

There are several brands of Primers for reloading.  Federal ignite the easiest, Winchester next, then several others and CCI are the hardest.  The primers you use will make NO noticeable difference in your loads and you won't notice the difference unless you are shooting over a chronograph.

Mixed Brass (different head stamps) will also make NO difference to you unless you are trying for maximum accuracy, even then we talking about hundredths of an inch in group size.  For CAS we need accuracy in the "Minute of Tea Saucer or Pie Plate."  The most common head stamp is *---* and that is Starline brass.  Probably the best brass on the market today.

Tracking the specific number of times you cases have been reloaded is a waste of time and effort.  You reload and shot them until they split, then throw them in you scrap bucket for recycling.  I personally have cases I have been loading and shooting for 20 years.

Big bullets are for folks who like BIG recoil.  You'll get tired of that REALLY QUICK.  Look for load data for lighter bullets.  You may well settle at around 200Gr.  I personally load a bit lighter.  160Gr or even less.  With the 45, your going to get some Blow-By.  Really noticeable in your rifle.  The 45 Colt case will NOT expand to seal the chamber.  There are way to mitigate that, or even eliminate blow-by but that is whole different thread.

Take your time.  Ask Questions and remember to askance at answers that don't quite make sense.  Above all else, BE SAFE and HAVE FUN.  This GAME is all about FUN!!!

Offline spencer_pa

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2019, 03:58:35 pm »
Yep, I think the meticulous recordkeeping will grow old fast. As a newbie, I might try it out. I'm sure you're right about the 250gr bullet.

It's a great part of this community - people's willingness to share information and be welcoming to new impostors like me.  Thanks again!

Offline Abilene

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2019, 06:21:19 pm »
Yep, I think the meticulous recordkeeping will grow old fast....

Maybe it boils down to how OCD your are.  I started an Excel spreadsheet in '98 when I started shooting.  Has a page for CAS matches, a page for all my reloading, and a page for every gun I own.  Every round fired through each gun is logged.   But I don't worry about brass.  :D

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2019, 08:51:10 pm »

Abilene ......   :D

I don't really mean to be disparaging, really I don't ..... but ...... Are you still Sane???  ;) Really???  With that kind of record keeping I'da been 'round the bend long afore now.   :) Listening to the voices in yer head yet???  :P Talk to yer self much???   ::)

Atz actually scary to a SLOB like me.  OofDa.....  ;D

Offline 1961MJS

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2019, 01:52:04 am »
Hi OK, I did learn to reload from a Bench Rest shooter.  2.  I shoot Bullseye as my primary shooting sport.  I shoot a medium load in a Schofield, using .45 Schofield brass with a 250 grain bullet because it shoots to point of aim at 25 yards and a bit past.  Yes, I'm a bit OCD on reloading...

Don't talk to yourself.
If you talk to yourself, don't argue.
If you argue with yourself, don't lose the argument.

Later Y'all   ;D ;D ;D
Mike
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Division of Oklahoma

Offline DeaconKC

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2019, 10:57:02 am »

Don't talk to yourself.
If you talk to yourself, don't argue.
If you argue with yourself, don't lose the argument.

Later Y'all   ;D ;D ;D

And if you catch yourself going "Huh?" during the conversation, get some help!  ;D ;D
Yup, I'm that DeaconKC from Surplus Rifle
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Offline Professor Marvel

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2019, 11:36:42 pm »
Ah my good Abilene! I admire and am actually envious of your technique! Pay no heed to the slapdash methodology of the naysayers! ( You know who you are Coffin!)

It is only through meticulous record keeping and such solid quality control that one can ensure consistency and maintain the evidentiary chain necessary for troubleshooting and debug of errant bullet holes downrange!

I will bet your lab-technique and engineer notebooks were things of beauty!

Maybe it boils down to how OCD your are.  I started an Excel spreadsheet in '98 when I started shooting.  Has a page for CAS matches, a page for all my reloading, and a page for every gun I own.  Every round fired through each gun is logged.   But I don't worry about brass.  :D

You and I need a data analysis kaffe-klatch, mit pie!  Do you like Apple?
Do you have any instrumentation such as a chrony and/or pressure device?


...
Don't talk to yourself.
If you talk to yourself, don't argue.
If you argue with yourself, don't lose the argument.

And if you catch yourself going "Huh?" during the conversation, get some help!  ;D ;D

Ah my fellow self-discussionists...
When having a discourse with mysellf, I find it useful to first identify and assign names. 
Then I like to achieve a consensus amongst the voices in ones head at which point it is easier to
 keep the argument on topic and maintain a civil discourse

(Damn it sean you will keep a respectful tone or I WILL Have you exorcised!)

Yhs
Prof Marvel, Sean The Sheep, Bob The Builder, and Quetzlcoatl

PS: Einstein talked to himself constantly. But due to the Uncertainty Principle and the Dilation of Time theory,
he was never sure who had the last word.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2019, 02:53:47 am by Professor Marvel »
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Offline Abilene

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Re: Cowboy reloading questions 45LC
« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2019, 10:14:08 am »
My OCD only goes so far.  Because I am really lazy, err, efficient, yeah that's it.  No chrony, etc.  I do own a digital scale and a caliper.  You would not want to see my reloading area (or any of my house for that matter).  I am a messy bachelor and I have a messy bachelor brother living with me.  Sort of like The Odd Couple except we are both Oscar.  :)