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  #1  
Old 02-07-2017, 12:41 PM
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Why no "wiggle room" with H110 powder?


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I totally understand and agree with the principle of starting a load well below max and gradually working up to max, watching for signs of overpressure.

Many in the forum have recommended this load for 44 mag rifles: 240 gr. JHP and H110 powder.

Hodgdon’s load data for 44 mag, 240 gr. JHP bullet, H110 is: Starting 23.0 gr., Max 24.0 gr.

Why would the Starting load be so high? Why no wiggle room?
Would there be anything wrong with starting at say 17 gr. and working up to 24?

Hodgdon doesn't have such a narrow range with the same bullet weight in a cast bullet:
Hodgdon’s load data for 44 mag, 240 gr. SWC cast, HP-38 powder, says: Starting 5.5 gr., Max 11.0 gr.
All powders for cast bullets give plenty of room between starting and max loads.
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  #2  
Old 02-07-2017, 01:08 PM
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The stuff just does not "lite on fire" like other propellants do. Needs "back-pressure" to work good. Get to a certain point, and does fine. The loads listed sure do well. Amazing well! Full snort and good.

Cheezywan
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  #3  
Old 02-07-2017, 01:31 PM
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From My Reading:
H110 (and W296) seems to have a Definite Lower Limiton Cumbustion Pressure for Proper Ignition and Stable Burn after Ignition.
It apparantly does NOT "Like" Light, or Low Pressure Loads at all.
Also if the Pressure drops during Cumbustion, it seems to stop burning and leaves a Melted Mess in the bore for the Next shot to get blocked upon, resulting in sometimes Catistropic overpressures.
Generally I have Read tha tStarting at Less than 97% of Max is a good point but have found loads listed as reliabily Tested at as little as 81% of Maximum used as a Starting Limit in RIFLE cartridges.
The 44 Magnum load may be limited by its possible use in a REVOLVER, whihc does Vent the Pressrue early in Firing.

I hope this Enlightens You as to the Reasoning.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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  #4  
Old 02-07-2017, 02:35 PM
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H110/W296 powders. Magnum primer required. Its best with heavy bullets. 240- 250 gr or more.
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  #5  
Old 02-07-2017, 02:37 PM
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Slow burning (for handgun) ball powder, requires a magnum primer to ensure proper ignition. Low density loads (that is, less than near max.pressure) will not combust properly, as chevwilliam describes. Win 296 has exactly the same properties. Neither is going to work well with reduced pressure loads in the 44 Magnum.
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  #6  
Old 02-07-2017, 03:06 PM
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Exhibits wild fluctuations in pressure if given too much room in the case.
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  #7  
Old 02-07-2017, 03:29 PM
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not working well at less than max loads is an understatement.

It can cause a condition called detonation. It is a condition where a secondary explosion/ignition happens and the pressures go thru the roof.


Personally, I prefer more flexible powders that give results just as good or better than H110/win296.
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Old 02-07-2017, 04:21 PM
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I don't understand, every body says WW296 and H110 are the same and always have been. Data from my 26th Hodgdon manual. Max. loads for 240 grain jacketed bullet H110 (page 701) 24 grains (1548 fps) max load of WW296 (page 704) 23.5 (1429 fps)

I still don't interchange the two some 25 years later and I'm still trying to empty the 8 pounder of H110 I bought back then . . . . . . .

RJ
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  #9  
Old 02-07-2017, 04:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by recoil junky View Post
I don't understand, every body says WW296 and H110 are the same and always have been. Data from my 26th Hodgdon manual. Max. loads for 240 grain jacketed bullet H110 (page 701) 24 grains (1548 fps) max load of WW296 (page 704) 23.5 (1429 fps)

I still don't interchange the two some 25 years later and I'm still trying to empty the 8 pounder of H110 I bought back then . . . . . . .

RJ

I'm not saying they are exactly the same, just have the same jekyll and hyde habits.
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  #10  
Old 02-07-2017, 05:51 PM
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I've been loading magnum cartridges with this powder for a long time, never had any problems with ignition. But I have always followed the recommendation to use published data and have never used start charges below published table. It's only a tough powder to work with when you try to manipulate the start charge.

I've also always used magnum primers with it, it needs all the help it can get to burn properly.

SMOA
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  #11  
Old 02-07-2017, 07:49 PM
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It is both more complicated, and less complicated, than people think.

First, follow the posted load data. When there is some! More on this later....

Will the stuff burn at less than full .44 mag pressures? Er... um.... well.... yes, actually, it will. Look up data for a .410 shotshell and note the pressures.... huh....

So, why is that? We have been told over and over it won't work at low pressures, then, it actually will?

The answer is probably very much dependent on the 'payload' ahead of it. That provides the 'back pressure' to make it burn correctly. And a properly loaded shotshell will not have any airspace above the powder.

Or, in other words - the .410 load uses a SMALL amount of 296/H110, behind a LARGE amount of shot, and no air space. Think about it....

When I was fiddling around with the .500 JRH, and pretty well had to come up with my own loads, I found that 296 behaved rather predictably, as long as I had 'enough' bullet ahead of it in the case. Small increases in powder charges, lead to predictable increases in velocity. How much was 'enough' bullet? 400gr. jacketed and 440gr cast bullets in the .500 JRH were pretty well behaved. 350gr. bullets had a lot more muzzle blast, and 300gr. bullets had muzzle blast that would pretty well clear the shooting bench

How does this relate to other cartridges? Not to oversimplify, but the heavier-for-caliber bullets seem to be more forgiving.

Just some thoughts.
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  #12  
Old 02-07-2017, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by recoil junky View Post
I don't understand, every body says WW296 and H110 are the same and always have been. Data from my 26th Hodgdon manual. Max. loads for 240 grain jacketed bullet H110 (page 701) 24 grains (1548 fps) max load of WW296 (page 704) 23.5 (1429 fps)

I still don't interchange the two some 25 years later and I'm still trying to empty the 8 pounder of H110 I bought back then . . . . . . .

RJ
Well...I said they had the same properties, not that they were the same powder. I have over a dozen loading manuals, and those that list both 296 and 110 rarely have identical max charges with a given bullet in the 44 Mag.
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  #13  
Old 02-07-2017, 08:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeG View Post

And a properly loaded shotshell will not have any airspace above the powder.

Or, in other words - the .410 load uses a SMALL amount of 296/H110, behind a LARGE amount of shot, and no air space. Think about it....
That's the key to consistent combustion with H110/W296. The 44 Mag needs the same condition, hence the large charges. With a metallic cartridge, you can't just seat the payload against the powder charge like the shotshell.

With a similar expansion ratio to the 410, the pressures are much higher with the relatively large powder charge in the 44.
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  #14  
Old 02-08-2017, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shawnbo View Post
Well...I said they had the same properties, not that they were the same powder. I have over a dozen loading manuals, and those that list both 296 and 110 rarely have identical max charges with a given bullet in the 44 Mag.
But they are the same powder. Both are canister grade Western Cannon 296. produced at GD's St. Marks, Florida plant. This fact was at one time published in the MSDS sheets, then lobbyists complained that too much proprietary information was being revealed in MSDS sheets, so it stopped. But if you find a 2009 MSDS for Hodgdon and Winchester powders, they give you that information. If you look at Hodgdon's updated online data for the two powders, the loads are now identical, as Hodgdon now distributes both and puts the same powder in the differently branded containers (Same for HP38 and 231, among others). I have this from the horse's mouth, as a Hodgdon tech told me Hodgdon actually brought H110 out first and Winchester followed a year later with 296. The differences you see in recommended loads for the two powder names in old data are due to a lot of old data being developed in production firearms rather than in pressure guns, and due to the fact that no two load manual developers were working with H110 and 296 that had come from the same lot of WC296. Lot-to-lot variations are perfectly able to account for the differences you see.

The warning not to under-load this powder is, indeed, based on rounds squibbing out and leaving a bullet stuck in the barrel for the next round to be fired into (an event that can burst a gun, depending on the stuck bullet position). Before they updated their website, Hodgdon spelled this out explicitly in a warning about this specific powder under the Enter button on the load data front web page. In my subsequent conversation with the Hodgdon tech, he pointed out that 296 is not alone in this. It can happen with other powders, particularly older formula spherical propellants that are too slow burning for for the bullet weight being used and resulting fast expansion rate. This is why MikeG was OK with really heavy bullets. The powder space might be small and the expansion ratio large, but if the bullet is really heavy it gives the powder plenty of time to build pressure before it moves very far. That satisfies the required burning conditions.

The Norma manual has a good description of what goes wrong in a squib load or in an underloaded case. It has the same effect with slow powders. The combustion process involves heat first putting the surface of the powder through phase from solid to gas (sublimation), but the actual flame is above the surface of the grain where the gas reaches the combustion point. But when there is too much room, as the bullet starts expanding the space, the pressure, and with it the temperature, can drop enough so some of the gas recondenses to a solid before it combusts, and that makes the pressure and temperature drop still faster, which can snowball into extinguishing of the flame. It also makes for a lot of gritty and sooty bore fouling, so when you have powders leaving a lot of that around, you should at least be wary that you may be using powder too slow for the pressures and temperatures you are reaching in the chamber.

Here is a list I compiled from 2009 and earlier MSDS sheets of powders that are actually the same stuff, but that you sometimes see different data details for because of lot-to-lot variation.

Code:
Powders from 2009 MSDS sheets (some newer MSDS sheets lack the powder name information due to
changes in MSDS requirement regulations).

Note that bulk grade versions have wider burn rate specs and can vary significantly from the
canister grades, which are controlled for burn rate by blending with held back fast or slow 
lots, as needed to adjust them to within ±3% of their nominal burn rates.

     Canister      | Bulk Grade |       Canister         | Canister |      Canister        |
      Grade        |            |        Grade           |  Grade   |       Grade          |
                   | St. Marks  |                        |          |                      |
     Hodgdon       | Mil & OEM  |      Winchester        | Thales   |        IMR           |
___________________|__Numbers___|________________________|__(ADI)___|______________________|_
                   |            |                        |          |                      |
HP-38--------------|-- OBP231 --|- 231 ------------------|----------|----------------------|-
                   |   OBP124   |  AALite (WFL)          |          |                      |
Titewad            |   OBP132   |                        |          |                      |
Tightgroup --------|-- OBP242 --|------------------------|----------|----------------------|-
                   |   OBP465   |  Super-Handicap (WSH)  |          |                      |
Longshot           |   OBP473   |                        |          |                      |
Lil' Gun ----------|-- OBP516 --|------------------------|----------|----------------------|-
Hybrid 100V        |   SHP771   |                        |          |                      |
                   |   SMP224   |  AutoComp              |          |                      |
-------------------|--- WAA90 --|- WST ------------------|----------|----------------------|-
H110               |    WC296   |  296                   |          |                      |
HS-6               |    WC540   |  540                   |          |                      |
HS-7               |    WC571   |  571                   |          |                      |
-------------------|--- WC748 --|- 748 ------------------|----------|----------------------|-
H414               |    WC760   |  760                   |          |                      |
H335               |    WC844   |                        |          |                      |
BL-C(2)------------|--- WC846 --|------------------------|----------|----------------------|-
H380               |    WC852   |                        |          |                      |
US869              |    WC869   |                        |          |                      |
-------------------|-- WMR780 --|- Supreme 780 ----------|----------|----------------------|-
                   |   WXC170   |  WSF                   |          |                      |
Clays              |            |                        |  AS30N   |                      |
International Clays|------------|------------------------|- AS50N --|----------------------|-
Universal Clays    |            |                        |  AP70N   |                      |
H4227              |            |                        |  AR2205  |IMR 4227 second source|
H4198 -------------|------------|------------------------|- AR2207 -|----------------------|-
                   |            |                        |   BM1    |                      |
H322               |            |                        |  AR2219  |                      |
Benchmark          |            |                        |   BM2    |                      |
-------------------|------------|------------------------|- AR2210 -|- IMR 8208 XBR -------|-
H4895              |            |                        |  AR2206H |                      |
Varget             |            |                        |  AR2208  |                      |
H4350 -------------|------------|------------------------|- AR2209 -|----------------------|-
H4831              |            |                        |  AR2213  |                      |
H4831SC            |            |                        | AR2213SC |                      |
H1000 -------------|------------|------------------------|- AR2217 -|----------------------|-
Retumbo            |            |                        |  AR2225  |                      |
H50BMG             |            |                        |  AR2218  |                      |
-------------------|------------|------------------------|- AR2215 -|IMR 4198 second source|
                   |            |                        |  AS25BP  |IMR Trail Boss        |
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  #15  
Old 02-08-2017, 02:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unclenick
Lot-to-lot variations are perfectly able to account for the differences you see.
That was my understanding, but for obvious reasons, I not going to state on a public forum that two differently labelled and branded powders are the 'same.' Anyone having done the background, as you have, knows this, but others without that knowledge should not make assumptions. If you read my earlier post, I said W296 has 'exactly the same properties' as H110. That's as close as you can get to stating that they are the same powder, without actually declaring it directly.
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Last edited by shawnbo; 02-08-2017 at 02:11 PM.
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Old 02-08-2017, 03:00 PM
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They are the same powder. Ask the Manu's.
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  #17  
Old 02-08-2017, 06:24 PM
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Look at Hogdons load data. The difference in pressure between start load of 23gr.and 24gr is over 10,000 psi with a 240 gr jackets bullet!!! I go by the book. No fooling around with this powder!
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  #18  
Old 02-08-2017, 06:53 PM
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'Same' but there are always lot-to-lot variations in performance. So.... every lot is 'different' than the previous lot, but still the 'same' powder... plus or minus a few percent. Or thereabouts.

Confused?

Anyway - treat them the 'same' and you will be OK. With the heavier-for-caliber bullets, and little or no airspace, good primers, and decent crimp... they get the job done.
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Old 02-09-2017, 01:05 AM
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I am wondering how "lit-Gun" powder would work in the .44 Magnum with 240 grain bullet (?) I am tempted to reload a few cartridges and see how they perform accuracy wise vrs. H-110 or WW-296 powders. I find H-110 or WW-296 powders a bit dirty burning @ 23.5 grains.
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  #20  
Old 02-09-2017, 02:22 AM
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The OP is wondering why the range of suitable charge weights is so narrow for H110/W296. Others decline to use these excellent powders because of this peculiarity. Aside from being unable to create reduced recoil loads with the stuff, I've found both to be very simple and effective to use...you just follow the load recipes listed in manuals and on both bullet and powder websites. What could be easier?

Li'l Gun works well in the 44RM, although some claim it burns at a high temperature, so may result in some flame cutting in revolvers?
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