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Newbie...Loadmaster on the wayhere...but what powder is best

 
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TheDon



Joined: 07 Jan 2010
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 11:32 pm    Post subject: Newbie...Loadmaster on the wayhere...but what powder is best Reply with quote

Hello everyone,

I've watched the videos over and over and you have convinced me to take the plung!!

I will be reloading to compete in USPSA. 9mm.

What is the best powder to use in this press for 9mm pushing a 125 and 147gr fmj.

Anyhelp would be great!

TheDon
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Jumping Frog



Joined: 12 Feb 2008
Posts: 628
Location: Texas!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you go over to The High Road: Handloading and Reloading forum, and do a search on "best 9mm powder", you will get more results than you will ever want to read.

A couple of standbyes include Bullseye and Unique, but truly, there are many, many good powders.
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darwin
Site Admin


Joined: 28 Jan 2008
Posts: 1870
Location: Central Indiana

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with JF. There are a lot of good powders. Here's what I've tried: Bullseye and Titegroup. Both worked well, but they are faster powders. This means you use less of it per charge. This is economical, but doesn't fill the case very far. I loaded 147 grain bullets, which used less powder than lighter bullets, which made things worse.I became uncomfortable with these because it is a bit harder to see the powder in the cases when visually verifying the charge. To be honest, this is not really all THAT hard in 9mm, but that was my thinking. It may be possible to double charge without filling the case.

Since then I've tried Unique and W231. Both fill the cases better and eliminate the chance of a double charge, since doing that would overflow the case. I am loading .45 ACP now and use W231, but I am sure that it and Unique work well for 9mm.

Those four powders are the extent of my knowledge on the subject. Very Happy
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TheDon



Joined: 07 Jan 2010
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My big CONCERN is what is the best powder for the LOADMASTER.

I have read here that Clays IS NOT GOOD in the LM.

Was looking for which ones are....and why?


The Don
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Citywaterman



Joined: 22 Dec 2009
Posts: 368
Location: Jacksonville Florida

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:15 am    Post subject: Pro Auto-Disk powder measure Reply with quote

Don, The LM uses the Pro Auto-Disk powder measure. I use the Pro Auto-Disk powder measure with pretty much any powder that my load manual tells me to use for the specific caliber that I'm loading. You mentioned Clays. The Pro Auto Disk measure works fine with Clays for me. I'm currently using the Lee Clasic Turret press (getting my LM soon) but as far as I know, the Pro Auto-Disk powder measure works the same (except for the chain) on either press. Citywaterman
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darwin
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Joined: 28 Jan 2008
Posts: 1870
Location: Central Indiana

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think the LM is different from any other press as far as powder goes, with the possible exception of using the adjustable charge bar with small charges. I did a search here for Clay with no results, but noticed that someone said that H110 is a ball powder, which should meter very well even with smaller charges. I don't think you are going to have trouble with 9mm, the charges for those aren't really small. Most people can live with the disks, not needing to fine tune their loads that precisely. Some have filed out a hole in a disk to get the exact charge that they want.

I personally think that Unique or W231 would be very good powders to start with, but like I said above, my experience with powders is really limited.
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helg



Joined: 23 Mar 2009
Posts: 407

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The statements below are of my own experience and reading.

Any powder from Bullseye to about 2400 in the powder rate chart, e.g. this one

http://www.reloadbench.com/burn.html

seems to me good to propel 9mm bullet.

Faster powders tend to give better accuracy due to smaller muzzle pressure, and leave less dirt in the barrel due more complete burning when bullet leaves the barrel. Slower powders, at the other side, better push the bullet at the last half of its travel in the barrel, and provide more muzzle speed (i.e. performance) for the same max chamber pressure. You see the trade-off there.

Heavier bullets (147gr) are better to use with slower powder, and lighter (115gr) - obviously, with faster one.

Flake powders have better "brisant curve" than ball powders. Because of the shape, last percents of the ball powder tend to burn slowly, as the ball burns on its surface and the area of the surface shrinks down when the ball is almost burnt.

On the other side, flake powders, like Alliant Red Dot or IMR 700X, do not measure that good in a small quantities die to bridging. I had to make a this mod to LM disk measure to have consistent drops with small amounts of the flake Red Dot powder. Small stick powders, like VV N310 and Winchester WST tend to leak off my disk measure. It is not too bad, the powder does not spill, but I can see a few grains of the powder on top of the disk. Flattened ball powders, like Winchester 231, Ramshot Zip or Hodgdon Titegroup tend to be the best for the measure. This to be added that non-disk shape powder measures from other vendors do much worse on the flake powders in small quantities that are needed for the 9mm.

Titegroup gave me a lot of smoke with cast bullets. Some people say it is due to a high temperature, which burns out a lot of lube. I did not have a single day without a wind at the range to check how much smoke 231 and Zip give with the cast bullets.

I use 700X powder with 9mm-124gr cast bullet. Its flake powder, but with the posted mod it does not matter. It smokes much less than Titegroup and Bullseye. Red Dot is faster than 700X, and I use it for 9x18 with light 93 grains bullet.
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Jumping Frog



Joined: 12 Feb 2008
Posts: 628
Location: Texas!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheDon wrote:
My big CONCERN is what is the best powder for the LOADMASTER.

I have read here that Clays IS NOT GOOD in the LM.

The powder selected is independent of the press selection (Loadmaster).

You will hear of people talking about a powder that is "fluffy with inconsistent metering" or a powder that is fine grained and "meters like water". Those powder characteristics will remain true regardless of the brand of powder measure.

As far as Clays is concerned, it doesn't "meter like water", but I have found the metering to be quite acceptable. It will hold +/- 0.1 grain using the Pro-Auto Disk Powder Measure on the Loadmaster. I've run about 4 lbs of Clays through the press in the last 18 months however, that was for .45 ACP.

I don't use Clays for 9mm because I have found some other powders to be more accurate in my gun (different guns can have different results). I also like Ramshot Zip.
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TheDon



Joined: 07 Jan 2010
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for the feedback....I will give the Clays a try...I will be reloading for a XDM 9mm to compete in USPSA. We'll see how it works out for me... CAN'T WAIT TO GET MY PRESSS Very Happy

TheDon
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darwin
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Joined: 28 Jan 2008
Posts: 1870
Location: Central Indiana

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't wait to hear your reports when you get it!

If you've read a lot here, you know my advice. Don't set up the case inserter or feeder at first. Run one case through at a time for a while so you can get used to watching the primers slide down the trough and visually checking every charge before placing the bullet in place. Then feed a case every other cycle, etc and work your way up to full speed.

Having the case feeder hooked up right off the bat raises the stress level, trust me. Smile Something will go wrong and you'll want to pull a round out and you have a full deck with another on the way.
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burningsquirrels



Joined: 07 Mar 2009
Posts: 27

PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don. Your best bet, is to find someone else shooting an XDM and ask what their load is.

Just about everyone in USPSA reloads. Chances are if you tap a few shoulders, they'll say "TRY THIS!" If it works, they'll probably give you the load info as a good starting point.

DISCLAIMER: your mileage may vary.

The most common I see used in 9mm for production and lim-minor, is to run a 124 to 147 grain bullet depending on what the gun likes. Glock guys like the 147 grain bullets, CZ shooters usually like 124-135 grain. Powders like Titegroup and VV N320 are very popular. Unique and bullseye are very easy to find on store shelves and work great, while the two prior are usually sold out for good reason.

Clays is used in gaming loads for those that run very close to minor power factor. However, it is dangerous because of its pressure spikiness. one small bump in powder can send your pressure through the roof into a KB. I found FOR MY GUN, NOT YOURS.... I ran a 1.135 oal in 40 cal under a 180 grn jfp over a cci 500 spp... that the difference of 0.1 meant a comfy load and a bruised hand. When using the auto-disk, one hole to another makes a jump bigger than 0.05 or 0.1 grains. So, naturally you would use the adjustable powder bar. The problem with the adjustable powder bars, at least with the two I bought, is that it doesn't handle large flake powders like clays. It looks like big pancakes, and I think it is much akin to filling a jar with a pound of sand versus filling a jar with a pound of cookies, if that makes sense. Because of the large size, I think powder doesn't sit very well in there - especially in the smaller charges you would use in 9mm. I find that the smaller and finer a powder is, the better it meters overall.

I tried loads of clays behind 115, 124, 125, and 135 grain bullets. While soft, I felt that they were temperature sensitive and inconsistent. I switched to Titegroup and found that the drop weight was more consistent. The recoil impulse was snappier, but I found that you get used to it. Clays was soft on the impulse, but it wasn't worth the inconsistencies I found. I also found that it fouls up a gun faster than Titegroup.

The main reason someone would use clays is because of its recoil characteristics. I find that my 40 loads were very soft shooting. I ran a very lightweight CZ 40b for more than a year. To make a long story short, cold temperatures at a major match helped put me down to minor power factor and I lost 1st place in my division. I ran Titegroup at the next match. The recoil was snappy, but in the long run I found that snappiness meant faster slide recoil time, and less time until the next sight picture. Titegroup also ran cleaner than Clays, and after 200-300 rounds had less founling in the action of the pistol.

Again, your mileage may vary.

I stil recommend finding other shooters and asking them what they use, and I can't imagine that they wouldn't want to help you out by trying out a few roudns of their ammo to see how you like the recoil, impulse, and timing in your gun.

A note, however. When you load light recoiling ammo, just note that you may run into ejection issues - lighter recoiling ammo means you need to run a lighter recoil spring in your gun, as it plays with the timing. Ask around at your next match, you should have half the squad giving you advice.

Good luck!
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