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  #1  
Old 11-29-2012, 6:22 PM
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Default Need help with powder suggetions for 38/357/40/45

So I have all the equipment I need for reolading, books,press,scale tumbler,etc.
I've looked at my books( Lyman & hornady) and accurate arms #7 & 9(1lbs cans)
Seem to appeal to me as they look like there slower/fill case more. I'm going to start out just plinking for now so I figured plated bullets would be good with Tula primers for cost factor.So are these good powders to start out with?Your calgunning wisdom is greatly appreciated
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Old 11-29-2012, 6:34 PM
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i have used accurate #9, but for 357, 44 mag. don't have experience with 40, but in 45 acp, used unique, and bullseye.
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Old 11-29-2012, 6:43 PM
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I can tell you what works best for my guns:
.38 Spl: 148gn wadcutters and AA2 and 231/HP38. 158gn L-SWC and TrailBoss and 231/HP38
.357 Mag: 125gn JHP and AA7 or 2400. 158gn L-SWC and 231/HP38 , Unique, and AA5
.40S&W: any weight bullet or style (but only low velocity target to mid-range loads) and AA5. any weight bullet or style (mid-range to full power) and Silhouette
.45 Auto: any weight or style of bullet, but particularly 200gn L-SWC H&G #68 or clones, and 231/HP38 or AA2.
Inspect every charged case before placing a bullet on it to be seated to verify charge.
AA7 is OK for .40S&W with jacketed bullets, but it hasn't been accurate for me. AA7 is OK for .357 Mag and jacketed bullets no heavier than 140gn. AA9 is OK for .357 for all weights of jacketed bullets. Lead bullet, which you don't need to worry about now, will take a faster powder.
Neither AA7 nor AA9 is suitable for .38 Spl or .45 Auto.
Plated bullets suck in all my guns; however, most local gun stores carry some brand of plated bullet. You may want to get a RN design at first for simplicity.
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Old 11-29-2012, 6:47 PM
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How did you like it for 357? I'm Leary of bullseye for not having the expirence yet, I plan on doing batch reloading (20~ so) to get a feel for it, I definitely don't want a double charge with BE, I've read here and else where that unique is a solid beginner powder
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Old 11-29-2012, 7:05 PM
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Noylj thanks for the info! I've contemplated using lead as well again cause they're cheaper and the variety for 38/357, I have a lee classic cast turret and Lyman powder dispenser, also I'm going to use a RCBS hand primer, I plan on reloading slow and steady first. I'm kinda torn between jacketed or plated, I'll eventually try lead but I figured jacketed or plated would be best
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Old 11-29-2012, 8:11 PM
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Win231 for light loads. Also use Unique for light/med loads. I also use Hi-Skor 700X since I have a bunch of it left over from loading shotgun shells.
For mag loads in the 357mag I use H-110.
For mag loads I use jacketed bullets and also for some lighter loads. I use lead bullets for plinking/light loads as well as plated bullets.
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  #7  
Old 11-30-2012, 4:39 AM
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W231
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Old 11-30-2012, 4:51 AM
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Hodgdon HP-38/Winchester 231 (this is the same powder)

This powder has workable loads for all the calibers you mention. It's also cheap. It is my go-to powder for 45 and 38. While it does not produce the highest velocities in 357 it makes a very accurate 357 target load for my 4" 686.
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  #9  
Old 11-30-2012, 5:01 AM
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noyjl has good advice.

I shoot all 4 of those rounds you listed.
As a beginner, you should really start with one cartridge. I would recommend 45ACP. It is a low pressure round and pretty forgiving in the mid range loads.

As for powders, Unique is a very forgiving powder in the mid range area and is bulky enough to definitely let you know if you've accidentally double charged the case. Some people have a hard time getting Unique to measure consistently but I have never found that to be true with the powder measures I have. With too low a charge of Unique (or most any powder), you may run into issues such as unburned flakes, sooty cases and gas blowback in your face. None of those are really bad, just realize that it goes away as you work up in pressure to where the powder likes to be burned.

I would also recommend that you start with plated bullets or fmj. Lead is great and that's about all I shoot with my pistols now, but you will be dealing with possible leading issues, bullet fit, lube, hardcast vs swaged, moly coated, etc. When starting out, try to remove as many variables as possible.

Good Luck
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  #10  
Old 11-30-2012, 4:36 PM
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+1 for W231 in all of them, but if you want magnum loads for the .357 you will want to use a slower powder like H110
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Old 11-30-2012, 5:11 PM
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Second the motion for win231
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  #12  
Old 11-30-2012, 8:17 PM
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W231/HP38. I load all 4 calibers and tried a bunch of different powders. Always come back to one of these 2. cheap and easy to measure.
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  #13  
Old 11-30-2012, 8:24 PM
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That's tough...

I like bullseye for 38, W231 for 40 and Unique for 45. If you had to pick one powder for all of them, maybe check out Ramshot True Blue. It's one of the least expensive powders out there and it will load all of those calibers just fine.
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  #14  
Old 12-01-2012, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DUDEvonDudenstien View Post
So I have all the equipment I need for reolading, books,press,scale tumbler,etc.
I've looked at my books( Lyman & hornady) and accurate arms #7 & 9(1lbs cans)
Seem to appeal to me as they look like there slower/fill case more. I'm going to start out just plinking for now so I figured plated bullets would be good with Tula primers for cost factor.So are these good powders to start out with?Your calgunning wisdom is greatly appreciated
I heard about h-110 for .357 but if you can use it for anything other than .44 mag and 50 ae then it TOTALLY rocks.

I say GOOD on the plated bullets and primers. Tula/Wolf primers is about ALL that I stock and they have been working FINE for me. I have loaded over 1600 .44 mag rounds and used mainly tula/wolf and I have only had ONE misfire. But after 5 more hammer falls it shot, EVERYONE here thinks that the primer was not seated all the way and they could very well be correct. Tula/Wolf primers are HARD and I smash the hell out of them on my press and then when I switch over to Federal OMG they slip in like butter on a hot cinnamon roll. That must be why they cost about $14 more a brick... anyways, plated are good because they are meant for around 1400 or so FPS if you get the ones from Xtremebullets. Powerbond has good prices too from time to time and they had good .44 mag HP plated rounds.

Good for you on the book of Lyman (BoLy). Hornady has good detailed info also, You might want to consider the Book of Lee ONLY because they have a GIGANTUS load database under their belt. Of course they have different load data compared to Hornady and Lyman but it is still nice to see that stuff. Also, keep up to dates on load data. Whatever powder you get be sure to get the free load data/recipes from those manufacturers as in reloading it is a fairly common practice to just update all data at random and then make all previous load data unsafe all of a sudden... I still like to shoot WST outta my 9mm... 150 rounds still no problems...

I have heard good thigns about HP38 and W231. I say start there and if you are happy, STAY there.

I have to do things because I can. Now that I am unemployed it has only stopped me from buying a few guns but if I see primers or powder on sale I will snag them. As a result of my testing, I have AA#7, AA#9, 2400, Imr4227, H-110, 300-MP, LILGUN, Reloader 7(was an accident), Blue dot, Green dot, and a few others that I have not even gotten to try out yet ALL for the freaking .44 mag Desert Eagle that I finally broke and is at the shop (not reload related).

NOW I have to reload all of that powder when it is clearly obvious, HAD I just listened to EVERYONE here when several good folks told me that H-110 is DA BOMB and AA#9 was also good for a softer load, I would only have about two-three brands of powder. But no. If you are trying to save money then follow what all of these random guys on the internet are saying (you heard THAT reference yet?) and get the one or two powders, in this case hp-38 or w231 and for that .357 MAG get H-110 but CHECK first that it is meant for .357 mag. I am fairly certain that it is. YOU SHOULD BE VERY HAPPY with these two powders. Don't be a Stilly and have to try everything out... It makes for frustration to use different settings and have ten different containers for 10 different loads AND it is not always easy to go and chrono them at the range... BTW, after being here for a while, I find that most if not EVERYONE that I have talked to here are not out to ruin me or my face by giving me a crap load. Thus the guys on the internet comment. What good are these forums if you can not trust folks and what they tell you? Just be careful and check and double check your data before you build and shoot. It is never a bad practice to find a particular load recipe in at least two different places before you decide to give it a try.

If I have to kill something with fire I will load up some 300-MP in the 44 mag because it puts out a LONG flame compared to the H-110. If it works for .357 mag you might want a lil 1lb bottle to play with after you have your other loads down.
Heck, I am gonna get some HP-38 now and give it a spin... BTW, H-110 is like crack if you like to go BOOM so buy it in 8lb bottles to save money. Your welcome.
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Last edited by stilly; 12-01-2012 at 10:37 AM..
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:58 AM
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I use 231 / hp38 for 38spl, 9mm, 10mm, 44spl & 45 acp. I use w296 for 357 mag & s&w 500. I don't see any reason to switch powders at this time. I have used tula primers with zero problems.
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Old 12-01-2012, 3:27 PM
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231 is good for the 38, 40 & 45 and for plinking loads in 357 brass, but for full power 357 loads, you should be looking at #9 or H110.
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Old 12-01-2012, 3:39 PM
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Re: True Blue
I have been "amazed" at how well True Blue works from very light loads to full power. Haven't used a lot of it, yet, but it does show a lot or promise.

Re: powder smell
I have never really noticed any different smell. I have heard some other sensitive shooters who have complained about TrailBoss.
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Old 12-01-2012, 8:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noylj View Post
Re: True Blue
I have been "amazed" at how well True Blue works from very light loads to full power. Haven't used a lot of it, yet, but it does show a lot or promise.
I've got a pound in my cabinet that I've yet to try but the price is unbelievable! The reason why I thought it would be nice for the OP is because it's hard to pick one powder that is "best" for all of the calibers he listed. So, if he could find one that is "pretty good" at all of those calibers, for a lower price, that would be a good compromise. I'm happy to hear you've had good luck with it! What calibers have you loaded with True Blue so far?

Quote:
Re: powder smell
I have never really noticed any different smell. I have heard some other sensitive shooters who have complained about TrailBoss.
I've had that same observation from other shooters. Nobody whines about it but some people have said "Wow! That's smokey" or something to that affect but whatever. They're going to just have to deal with it...
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Old 12-04-2012, 6:01 PM
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THANK YOU! all so much for the great info, I'm planning on buying at least 2-4 powders at first so i don't have 1 powder that's ok for a particular caliber while excellent in another. I will have the funds pretty soon to stock up on components so i wanted to have a good base of powders to work with. Later on down the road i will try some magnum loads, but for now its mostly for press time them the range. My primary goal now is to load safe rounds and build up good reloading habits
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Old 12-04-2012, 7:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DUDEvonDudenstien View Post
I'm planning on buying at least 2-4 powders at first so i don't have 1 powder that's ok for a particular caliber while excellent in another.
This is a much easier question to answer. My recommendations would be:

Winchester 231
Alliant "Unique"
Hodgdon 110 (for magnum loads)
Bullseye


If you go for 5, get a 9oz can of Trailboss too. It's great for cast lead/copper plated loads.
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Old 12-06-2012, 7:04 PM
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I've been using Alliant Unique for my 40 and 45 loads. Really like it a lot. very consistent FPS........
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