Author Topic: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit  (Read 200 times)

Offline R.M. Conversion

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.38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« on: January 20, 2020, 12:20:22 pm »
Found this to be a good, accurate combo in my '92 Win and '73 Peacemaker at 7.0g over a cast 180g pill.  No signs of pressure, distress or extraction troubles anywhere.

I'm positive this was a safe, midrange load when I started using it about 10 years ago or so.  I never hotrod any handloads - I have a .44 Mag for that - and keep extensive records. 

But now I see the published max is 6.8g.

Do you think load data is being dialed downward due to liability?

Offline August

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2020, 07:43:22 pm »
Mine work better when I put the powder under the bullet rather than over it.

Offline Professor Marvel

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2020, 08:24:45 pm »
Found this to be a good, accurate combo in my '92 Win and '73 Peacemaker at 7.0g over a cast 180g pill.  No signs of pressure, distress or extraction troubles anywhere.

I'm positive this was a safe, midrange load when I started using it about 10 years ago or so.  I never hotrod any handloads - I have a .44 Mag for that - and keep extensive records. 

But now I see the published max is 6.8g.

Do you think load data is being dialed downward due to liability?

A lot of data changed recently, more than a couple reasons but heres two:

1. Changes to the powder formulation
2. Old data was based on the lead or copper ?crusher? system. New data is based on actual psi found using magic computer pixie dust. er new computerized piezo-sensor systems that have be become Very affordable and obscenely accurate.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2020, 08:28:38 pm by Professor Marvel »
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Offline Tascosa Joe

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2020, 07:39:48 am »
Several years ago Mike Venturino said he used 6.8 gr of 231 in all of his SAA Colts using the normal weight bullet i.e.  180 for 38 WCF, 205 for 44 WCF and 250 for 45 Colt.  I have been using that load for several years and it works well.  I know my reloading manual I purchased in 1970 has much higher max loads than the latest book.
NRA Life, TSRA Life, NCOWS  Life,

Offline R.M. Conversion

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2020, 01:05:21 pm »
Well, I just dialed it back to 6.8 and there's no loss of accuracy - and feels pretty much the same, so might as well go with that.

Offline R.M. Conversion

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2020, 01:11:21 pm »
There's lots of great information to be shared on this board, and I appreciate the help of people more experienced than me - but scrolling through "posts-that-add-nothing-but-volume" makes that more difficult.

Offline Cholla Hill Tirador

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2020, 04:42:39 am »
  I just checked 38-40 data on www.loaddata.com with that powder. Lots of loads, and the general consensus seems to put 6.8 grs. as a max. However, some of the data from Handloader #117 has magazine five loads using 7.5 grs. with weights ranging from 168-185 grs.

  I've never used either of those in my 38-40's, but have had great luck with 700-X.

 CHT

Offline R.M. Conversion

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Re: .38-40 and WW231/HP-38 powder - upper load limit
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2020, 07:11:44 am »
Turns out I have quite a few that are 7.0 (and likely 7.1 given the variances of a progressive powder measure) with no signs of pressure or tough extraction or anything, so I'd say it's okay.  YMMV.

 

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