My Very First Reload with Question (pic)

This is a discussion on My Very First Reload with Question (pic) within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; Hey guys just loaded my very first rounds today in 45ACP I'm using Zero brand 230gr FMJ bullets Hodgdon HP-38 Powder Remington Primers Recommended starting ...

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Thread: My Very First Reload with Question (pic)

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array TheShadow's Avatar
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    My Very First Reload with Question (pic)

    Hey guys just loaded my very first rounds today in 45ACP

    I'm using Zero brand 230gr FMJ bullets
    Hodgdon HP-38 Powder
    Remington Primers

    Recommended starting load is 4.2 up to 5.3

    On the Lee Pro Auto Disk the chart listed disk # 37 and with that It kept coming up short on the scale. I switched to disk # 40 and still short. Disk # 43 measured 4.4 consistently. I only loaded five to see how they shoot. My question is do you think that's an OK powder starting weight? Also am I reading the scales right? I know these questions probably sound silly to you guys that are well seasoned in reloading. I kind of like to keep my 10 fingers in one piece

    BTW the COL was 1.262 on average.

    This is 4.4gr right?

    “Put your pain in a box. Lock it down. No man is stronger than one who can harness his emotions.” -Act of Valor

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    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    At that COAL, I think you're fine at 4.4gr. Mind you, I use a different powder, but with a similar load range (Hogdon Titegroup), and in a nice big .45 shell I doubt you are risking excessive pressure. I run a bit longer, around 1.268", but that's to feed in a 1911 as opposed to mitigating pressure.

    You do want to chrono your first few test rounds, if possible, because that'll give you your feedback compared to the chart velocities for that load.

    (I use a digital scale, but it looks like that balance is at 4.4 to me. )
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    Senior Member Array TheShadow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kazzaerexys View Post
    At that COAL, I think you're fine at 4.4gr. Mind you, I use a different powder, but with a similar load range (Hogdon Titegroup), and in a nice big .45 shell I doubt you are risking excessive pressure. I run a bit longer, around 1.268", but that's to feed in a 1911 as opposed to mitigating pressure.

    You do want to chrono your first few test rounds, if possible, because that'll give you your feedback compared to the chart velocities for that load.

    (I use a digital scale, but it looks like that balance is at 4.4 to me. )
    Thanks for the reply!

    I matched the COL of the WWB 230 FMJ's that my 3" 1911 love to eat. Don't have a chrono yet and was going to "try" to compare to a few factory rounds as far as the recoil and accuracy (if that's even possible)
    “Put your pain in a box. Lock it down. No man is stronger than one who can harness his emotions.” -Act of Valor

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    Senior Member Array jem102's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
    Hey guys just loaded my very first rounds today in 45ACP

    I'm using Zero brand 230gr FMJ bullets
    Hodgdon HP-38 Powder
    Remington Primers

    Recommended starting load is 4.2 up to 5.3

    On the Lee Pro Auto Disk the chart listed disk # 37 and with that It kept coming up short on the scale. I switched to disk # 40 and still short. Disk # 43 measured 4.4 consistently. I only loaded five to see how they shoot. My question is do you think that's an OK powder starting weight? Also am I reading the scales right? I know these questions probably sound silly to you guys that are well seasoned in reloading. I kind of like to keep my 10 fingers in one piece

    BTW the COL was 1.262 on average.

    This is 4.4gr right?

    Be sure you "zeroed" the scale per the instructions that came with it and have it on a LEVEL surface. If so, yes you have the scale set for 4.4 gr. A very wise investment is a set of scale check weights especially if you are going to be using an automatic powder measure.

    I did not know Zero was still in business but they used to be one of the best bullet makers around.

    The powder weight range you have listed for HP-38 is correct per the Lee #2 manual so it should be a mild to moderate load. In todays world any brand name primer you can get is good to go but I prefer Federal if available for the ACP.

    I set case length (sizing die) by stripping the pistol and adjust length until the rear face of the rim is flush to the end of the barrel hood. You do this with a case that is not "belled" for seating as it also will tell you if your cases are too long for your particular chamber. Remember the ACP sets operating length from the case mouth.

    OAL will be what your pistol likes but for an FMJ that's a good starting point. Don't be surprised if you need to go shorter as I found most after market bullets have a more blunt nose profile and closer to 1.200 usually feeds better.

    Recheck your finished rounds in the stripped barrel to be sure they are very close to the end of the hood and that they don't have to be forced into and/or out of the chamber. If all is correct lock the die rings.

    At the range check EACH of the 5 rounds you have loaded for pressure signs, bent rims et all. If good, record the data and load away.
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    VIP Member Array nedrgr21's Avatar
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    As different bullets have different ogives (where the bullet starts to curve inward) a good tool to have is case comparator or headspace guage to check for correct overall length.

    Scale looks good, I'll second the advice on zeroing. You're starting on the low end, which is good so you have a good margin for error. Be sure to throw about 10-15 charges before loading rounds to settle the powder and check for consistency. Also, if you change any cartridge components or the scale you're using, be sure to start over from scratch with a min load.

    Work up slow with small loads as the % increase is greater than with high capacity rifle cartridges.

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    Senior Member Array TheShadow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jem102 View Post
    Be sure you "zeroed" the scale per the instructions that came with it and have it on a LEVEL surface. If so, yes you have the scale set for 4.4 gr. A very wise investment is a set of scale check weights especially if you are going to be using an automatic powder measure.

    I did not know Zero was still in business but they used to be one of the best bullet makers around.

    The powder weight range you have listed for HP-38 is correct per the Lee #2 manual so it should be a mild to moderate load. In todays world any brand name primer you can get is good to go but I prefer Federal if available for the ACP.

    I set case length (sizing die) by stripping the pistol and adjust length until the rear face of the rim is flush to the end of the barrel hood. You do this with a case that is not "belled" for seating as it also will tell you if your cases are too long for your particular chamber. Remember the ACP sets operating length from the case mouth.

    OAL will be what your pistol likes but for an FMJ that's a good starting point. Don't be surprised if you need to go shorter as I found most after market bullets have a more blunt nose profile and closer to 1.200 usually feeds better.

    Recheck your finished rounds in the stripped barrel to be sure they are very close to the end of the hood and that they don't have to be forced into and/or out of the chamber. If all is correct lock the die rings.

    At the range check EACH of the 5 rounds you have loaded for pressure signs, bent rims et all. If good, record the data and load away.
    Thanks... each round slipped in and out of the chamber very smoothly. I didn't think about the bullet profile being different but if the 1.262 OAL doesn't feed well I'll set them a little deeper.

    Good advice... I'll pick up some scale calibration weights also.

    Here is a link to the Zero Bullets rozedist.com

    “Put your pain in a box. Lock it down. No man is stronger than one who can harness his emotions.” -Act of Valor

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    Senior Member Array jem102's Avatar
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    If the round in the chamber in the pic is fully seated you should be good to go. Work safely and let us know the outcome.

    I have always enjoyed handloading. Remember to take your time and there is NO such thing as too many notes or too much info when crafting your own ammo. You will be amazed how much you will learn about your firearms, ballistics and your skill...very rewarding adventure.
    Who is John Galt?

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    I use H-38 also and have found it to be extremely consistant from my powder dropper. Never varies.
    I load .45 200grn LSWCs, and am experimenting with 4.8 to 5.3 grn loads. Every tenth drop is weighed, each case visually checked for powder level.

    Sounds like a good moderate load you're making.
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    VIP Member Array Majorlk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    I use H-38 also and have found it to be extremely consistant from my powder dropper. Never varies.
    That is true of just about any of the ball powders. It is the large flake and extruded stick powders that generally cause metering problems.
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    Senior Member Array TheShadow's Avatar
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    Hey Guys I shot those first 10 test reloads yesterday and they all cycled well in my 3" 1911. The recipe was 230gr with Hodgdon HP-38 at 4.4 and 4.7gr. The spent brass looked fine with no bulging or splits. I'm going to lock down the dies tight and load a hundred with the 4.7 measure. I think I'll load about 10 at 5.0 just to test. (the Hodgdon data lists the 230gr @ 4.2 to 5.3) I'll update the post after a put those 100 rounds downrange. Overall I'm very happy and wished I'd of started reloading sooner!

    Thanks

    -TheShadow
    “Put your pain in a box. Lock it down. No man is stronger than one who can harness his emotions.” -Act of Valor

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    Member Array Emrah's Avatar
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    By the way, there are NO silly questions when it comes to firearms, especially reloading. Enjoy your new hobby and ask away with all the "silly" questions you want. It is VERY addicting.

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