Felt recoil with different powders

Felt recoil with different powders

This is a discussion on Felt recoil with different powders within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; I've been reloading for several years. Started with shotshells then moved on to rifle and pistol. Does anyone have information on "felt recoil"? Especially where ...

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Thread: Felt recoil with different powders

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array hdhnict's Avatar
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    Felt recoil with different powders

    I've been reloading for several years. Started with shotshells then moved on to rifle and pistol.
    Does anyone have information on "felt recoil"? Especially where the only difference is powder.
    Same bullet, same velocity just different powder. Primarily pistol rounds.

    Was talking to an old guy at the LGS awhile back. We were discussing felt recoil between similar pistols, but one was 9mm, the other was .45. There is a large difference in mass and peak pressure between those two rounds.
    Can a slower powder (lower peak pressure) produce " milder" recoil with the same bullet and velocity?
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    VIP Member Array high pockets's Avatar
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    I think you will find your answer in the fact that different manufacturers call for different loads for different powders in order to attain the same, or nearly the same, muzzle velocity, while staying within the proper SAAMI pressure specs.

    Since one of Newton's Laws declares that every action has an equal and opposite reaction, it follows that loads that generate the same muzzle velocity will generate the same amount of recoil. If this hypothesis holds true, it will make no difference what powder you use, if you are developing the same muzzle velocity.

    Most of us choose powders either for cleaner burning, or to actually develop a higher muzzle velocity while staying within the pressure curve. Of course, the higher muzzle velocity will come with it's attendant increase in felt recoil.

    Of course this is all supposition on my part, and I may be totally off base. Wouldn't be the first time.


    Oh heck, I'm pretty sure - same bullet - same velocity - different powder - should develop the same "felt recoil." That is contingent on the same person shooting both variants, since "felt recoil" is a totally subjective concept.
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    Distinguished Member Array Recon1342's Avatar
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    A 230gr bullet with fast powder will have the same force exiting the barrel as a 230gr with slow powder, provided the muzzle velocity is the same. They will likely have a different "feel" because the slower powder will spread out the pressure curve in the barrel over a longer period of time...
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    Senior Member Array hdhnict's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Recon1342 View Post
    A 230gr bullet with fast powder will have the same force exiting the barrel as a 230gr with slow powder, provided the muzzle velocity is the same. They will likely have a different "feel" because the slower powder will spread out the pressure curve in the barrel over a longer period of time...
    That is the theory I'm working on here.
    Trying to relate this to the impulse curve of black powder rocket engines.
    Total impulse may be the same, but some burn "all at once", others take longer. Slap vs. Push, if you will.
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    Actually the general rule for competition pistol is fast powder and heavy bullet creates the least felt recoil. So it's not just powder that factors into it, it's the bullet weight as well. In 9mm, for example, you're generally going to see your softest shooting rounds with a 147 gr. bullet (some are going to 160 gr. even) with a fast pistol powder like Titegroup, Bullseye, Solo 1000 or WST. Obviously, you've got to make the power factor per the rules of whatever you're shooting in, so they're only going to be as soft as you can make your PF with, but if you're just shooting for fun, you can load them even lower and get really soft shooting rounds. Just make sure you're not getting them so soft that you're risking a squib.

    Which may not answer your question at all since you were talking about same everything except powder. In that scenario, I don't think it would produce a perceivable difference if you were achieving the same velocity with the same projectile.
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    Altho I cant prove this I read somewhere that two otherwise equal loads but where one used 6 grains of powder and the other 3 grains, The one using less powder would have less "Felt" recoil. They quoted the same Newtons law, Less powder = less recoil. Ill have to try this out. DR
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    Senior Member Array Struckat's Avatar
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    I have been wondering about this also. I have read that a faster powder gives more of a snap vs a slower powder.

    As soon as I can find some 2400 around here I will find out. I'm new to 44mag and reloading and have been working on light loads with Unique and AA#7.

    Although #7 is slower, I don't feel much difference.

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    Distinguished Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    Fast powder and heavy (for caliber) bullets = less felt recoil. Try it see for yourself !

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    With loads off the same chart of handbook I never noticed any difference.

    Going between sources, a lot. There's a seven to ten year swing in loading data, from "as mild as possible so we don't get sued" to "pump it up to the max to make our stuff look good."
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