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  #21  
Old 05-15-2013, 04:36 AM
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Jacketed bullets at .452 are intended fro .45 Long Colt.
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  #22  
Old 05-15-2013, 06:30 AM
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I can't imagine using jacketed bullets in any of my 45 Colts. With one exception the new indoor shooting range requires jacketed bullets.

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  #23  
Old 05-16-2013, 05:34 AM
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I think you'd be looking at the heavier Ruger frames being loaded up warmer than SAAMI spec for hunting. The specifications for .45 Colt barrels and the various magnums that used its dimensions as a starting point for their design have a lot of slop available. The groove diameter of the .45 Colt barrel is given in the SAAMI spec as 0.4500-.4540, so anywhere inbetween is allowed. There seem to be both 0.451" and 0.452" barrels out there.

Hornady offers separate 0.451" and 0.452" jacketed bullets. But Sierra has resolved the issue by making all their jacketed forty-five bullets 0.4515".

For jacketed bullets a 0.001" oversize bullet is no problem to shoot. Just work your load up for it. I advise slugging your barrel and chamber throats in a revolver to see what your gun wants in a cast bullet.
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  #24  
Old 05-16-2013, 06:39 AM
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I bought 500 copper plated 200 grain .451 slugs for use in the indoor range. I used them in my S&W model 25 45 acp/45 auto rim. These shoot fairly well but not any where close to the .453-.454 cast bullets.

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  #25  
Old 05-17-2013, 04:42 AM
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Keep in mind that copper plated bullets are a lot softer than jacketed bullets, so their fit is more critical to prevent deformation. Jackets are actually made of gilding metal which, though it looks like copper and is often called "copper", is actually a form of mild brass, being an alloy of copper with 5%-10% zinc in it. The yellow brass used in cartridge cases is 30% zinc, by comparison, and that's responsible for the color difference.
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  #26  
Old 05-17-2013, 05:47 AM
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Nick;
What I want to try, once the current firearm/ammo related insanity passes, is buy some Berry's 200 grainers that are .452.
The powder charge that I'm using for the current 500 copper plated bullets is 4.5 grains of Bullseye. A fairly mild.

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  #27  
Old 05-17-2013, 05:57 AM
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That makes sense to try. For 185 grain JSWC's, 4.2 grains of Bullseye was always given as the standard equivalent to commercial match ammo, but I found it worked very will with 200 grain SWC's, too, and will still operate standard 1911's. The short barrel versions, though, will normally need a little more oomph to run their stiffer springs reliably.
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  #28  
Old 05-17-2013, 06:43 AM
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The functioning of the slide is not an issue fro me since I'm shooting a S&W model 25, model 1955 45 acp/ 45 Auto Rim.

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  #29  
Old 05-18-2013, 05:04 AM
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Yep. I was just putting that comment out there for the folks wanting to copy the loads in self-loaders. I still shoot about 3.8 grains of Bullseye under a 185 grain lead bullet for gallery and 25 yard timed and rapid targets in my Goldcup. They're able to clean targets at those ranges. The 200's with 4.2 grains always do better at 50 yards for slow fire for me.

For revolvers, the throat diameters seem to be the critical thing to please with choice of bullet diameter. A bullet that's about a half thousandth under throat diameter seems to be about ideal, so the throats have to be about 1.5 thousandths over groove diameter for the usual 0.001" over groove diameter soft bullets, and about 2.5 thousandths over groove diameter for bullets sized 0.002" over groove diameter, which I've found several revolvers to prefer.

If you read up on shooters from 50 years ago, a lot were running 3.5 grains under H&G 68 bullets, and I recall one lady top shot ran 3.2 grains. William Iorg and I were discussing this awhile back, and he pointed out that most of them used a fairly heavy roll crimp that bit into the bullet below its bearing surface shoulder and swore by that for producing the most accurate loads. I can remember seeing those crimps in photos in old articles on the subject. They were managing to get good start pressure from the low charges that way. Of course, in a self-loader you have to either headspace on the bullet or on the extractor hook for that to be a safe practice, and I expect many were doing the latter. But that's a non-issue in your 25. And if you don't mind wearing some case mouths out a little early, it's a good thing to experiment with if you aren't already doing it.

Slim also said a number of revolver competitors would replace their Smith barrels with Colt barrels, which had a slight taper down in diameter toward the muzzle, feeling that improved their accuracy. Today I'd be more inclined to experiment with my casting alloys to see if I couldn't get one that hugged the barrel well without doing that. Still, it's possible to firelap a taper in, if the idea doesn't give you the willies.
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Last edited by unclenick; 12-21-2013 at 04:59 AM. Reason: typo fix
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  #30  
Old 05-18-2013, 05:45 AM
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A number of years ago I got one of the barrel lapping kits from LBT and spent a cold dreary late winter lapping all of my revolvers. My main goal was to remove the constriction where the barrel and the frame met.
It was very successful, accuracy improved and leading ceased.
Again following LBT's direction I sized my bullets until I could just force them thru the cyclinder mouths.
I would load large quantities 45 acp with NEI's H&G #68 clone to function thru my Gold Cup and Model 25. my secret was to reduce the diameter of the neck expander on the powder thru die. I didn't do anything to case mouth flaring portion. So when I seated the bullet the case gripped the bullet in a death grip. The shoulder of the bullet was pushing the lands in the Gold Cup's barrel while still functioning the magazines and seated well in the #25's cyclinder.
Then I found out I really hated the half and full moon clips and switched the #25 to 45 Auto Rim.
Shortly afterwards I discovered that I hate chasing 45 ACP brass and retired the Gold Cup to a self defense gun using Hydro Shoks.

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  #31  
Old 05-18-2013, 12:56 PM
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Yep. I did pretty much the same thing after reading Veral's book. The reason I recommend a half thousandth clearance is just to limit any struggling with a speed loader to a light pat on the back with my palm, and I can't really tell the accuracy difference between equal fit and that half thousandth under.

I'm too addicted to the 1911's to give them up. Maybe it's a Gunsite thing, but having learned to build match guns, it's also a sense of comfort from knowing its works intimately. I usually haul a tarp with me to catch brass when I'm by myself, but chasing the cases around is still part of it. I got a brass catcher for matches years ago. The only problem with it is every once in awhile a case bounces off its mouth and parks against my hand just below the index finger joint. If I'm not wearing gloves and the gun is warm, that's unpleasant and doesn't help with trigger control.

Have you read the LASC page on firelapping? It's actually several articles. The one that caught my eye is Ken Mollohan's (2nd one down). He just basically fire polishes rather than lapping and claims that in a smooth bore the constriction doesn't cause the problems usually attributed to it. That surprised me. But I'm guessing he also has just the right alloy to upset again back to bore diameter after passing through, and does so at his particular pressure level.
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  #32  
Old 05-19-2013, 03:49 AM
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I made a test lap on new Winchester 1886, three 1895s, to check for constrictions and found very little. As a matter of course I fire lapped my Rossi 92 45 Colt, with good success. That Rossi with 300 grain cast or jacketed ahead of 20 grains of H110 is accurate out to 100, mabe furture I never tested at greater distance.
I'm sure that every one will have different results and opinions on lapping. I think of it as removing all of the potential problems like weighting cast bullets and checking for defects, checking powder charges as I work my way thru the batch being loaded. I try to make all of my S&W 'N' frames have the same trigger pull, or as close as possible. If I remove all the potential mechancial snafus that leaves the turkey pulling the trigger.
I used some of Veral's lapping compound to lap out the nose section of a Lyman 375449 to make it a bore rider. That produced little result as the RCBS and the Saeco molds produced better results just as they came from the factory. ( I had two of the Lyman 375449 molds and the un-lapped mold shot the same as the other.)

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  #33  
Old 05-20-2013, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by unclenick View Post
I think you'd be looking at the heavier Ruger frames being loaded up warmer than SAAMI spec for hunting. The specifications for .45 Colt barrels and the various magnums that used its dimensions as a starting point for their design have a lot of slop available. The groove diameter of the .45 Colt barrel is given in the SAAMI spec as 0.4500-.4540, so anywhere inbetween is allowed. There seem to be both 0.451" and 0.452" barrels out there.

Hornady offers separate 0.451" and 0.452" jacketed bullets. But Sierra has resolved the issue by making all their jacketed forty-five bullets 0.4515".

For jacketed bullets a 0.001" oversize bullet is no problem to shoot. Just work your load up for it. I advise slugging your barrel and chamber throats in a revolver to see what your gun wants in a cast bullet.
The Hornady XTP .451 has no cannelure, while the .452 does, apparently intended for .45LC. I can say this as having a supply of both in front of me.
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  #34  
Old 05-21-2013, 06:35 AM
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You appear to be correct about Hornady's intentions. We got off on a tangent about the functional aspect of diameter, which is ultimately no big deal in the .45 Colt chambering. But Hornady does have all their .451's without cannelures and all their jacketed .452 bullets with cannelures.

At Sierra they have both bullets with cannelures and without in their .4515" diameter, and their manual includes a cannelured bullet load for .45 Auto. Nosler's manual doesn't give bullet diameters in their load manual, that I could find, but they did have an introduction to .45 Colt by Dave Scovill, describing a .45 Colt he had with a 0.4515" barrel. The Speer manual is even more interesting, mentioning .45 Colt is produced with barrels ranging from .451" to .452", and offering bullets with cannelures in both of those diameters and with .45 Colt loads listed for both.

It's kind of like the industry just couldn't make up its mind about what it wanted to do.
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  #35  
Old 11-21-2013, 04:08 PM
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I've had three 45acp pistols all ran .452" diameter lead bullets, in particular the Lee TL 200g SWC which I have shot countless thousands with very good accuracy.
It's common practice to also seat the bullets out just far enough so when a round is dropped into the chamber there is a dull lead on steel thud, this will give your best accuracy with most lead alloy bullets.
Case length as with all cases should be checked and trimmed / chamfered to the correct and identical length in all your cases and with many pistol rounds they headspace on the case mouth so never use any more than a "slight" taper crimp, correct neck tension can be made more uniform with using brass that is still close to it's new thickness, if not toss them with no hesitation.
Using bought brass of the same brand and not range scrap will help the cause, and keep your brass into lots so the amount of times reloaded can be kept track of.
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  #36  
Old 11-23-2013, 02:31 PM
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The dull thud mainly indicates you will likely not run into feed problems as the bullet enters the chamber and you don't have squeeze from an oversized bullet that could lead to elevated pressure. But if you want best accuracy, go back to the first page of this thread and look at the last illustration in my post #8, third from left. The cast bullet loads for the target in the upper right were loaded this way. If I seated them deeper, the groups opened to about 1.4". Both loads made the plunk sound, so I couldn't discern the difference that way.

An additional benefit to getting best bullet alignment from seating in the throat, you get less leading. I've been posting that blue background image for a number of years now, and received numerous verifications of this from other shooters.

With .45 Auto brass, because pressure is too low to stick the brass to the chamber wall, the brass backs up in the slightly tapered chamber and shorter and fatter. If you have a narrow enough sizing die it may get longer the first time you resized (check with calipers) but after that the die will either flow a little bit of the brass back each time, shortening it slightly, or, if it's not so narrow, will leave the length unchanged.

I once tracked 500 Winchester cases through 50 reloadings of light target loads. The ones still left at the (a few lost to splits and most lost to the Range Spirits), about 200, had all shortened about 0.025" (yes, I had to lower my taper crimp die to keep working with them), or about thousandth per load cycle, on average. Most pistol rounds that fire at pressures below about 30,000 psi will either shrink or stay the same. The don't grow like a rifle case for the same reasons.

I concur with your assessment of the tumble lube bullets. I got the 6-cavity mold for the same bullet you're using and they come out about 0.4525". I shoot them as-cast (without sizing, since they still plunk) and the accuracy is even better than in that old photo.
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  #37  
Old 11-24-2013, 02:52 PM
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I can only speak from personal experiences with the three 45 acp pistols I have owned over the years, accuracy from my Colt Gold Cup Nat Match 45 acp at 50 yards would give sub 2" groups, just tolerable accuracy in my opinion.
I would think that for the most of all 45 acp guns of any brand would be very lucky to get reliable 3" groups at 25 yards let alone sub 2" groups at 50 yards, sure that's not quite the average stock gun, yes the Colt was fitted with the best barrel and bush not to mention a few other internal custom mods, but it was still essentially a stock std Colt pistol to look at.
For the record those loads were shot with if I remember 3.9g Red Dot powder, a Lee TL .452 200g SWC mould and a velocity of around 850 fps +/- a dozen, that gun now long since sold when our government changed our laws to remove all pistol calibres from the shooting public above .38.
But as for loading to allow the bullet touch just the rifling was common back then, drop tested with the barrel out of the gun and allowed to drop into the chamber the distance of the length of a 45 case, no rocket science required.
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Old 11-25-2013, 09:53 AM
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I think a lot of what works best depends on the chamber length. Quite a number of stock barrels have enough slop that the cartridge actually ends up headspacing on the extractor hook if you don't seat out to headspace on the bullet. One very experience 1911 gunsmith on another forum said he though it might be as high as 70% of the stock 1911's he's seen. These extractor hook headspacers are the ones that benefit most from bullet contact with the lands, as, absent that, the firing pin pivots the cartridge to the right side of the chamber during firing, causing a bit more lead shaving on that side by the case mouth step at the end of the chamber. That unbalances the bullet. It doesn't seem to affect jacketed bullets much.

I'm sorry you had to sell your Goldcup. I can't see what any government would achieve by that, except to sooth imaginary fears. Gun control advocates here like to indulge their imaginations as well. It also sounds like your copy of the Goldcup was a darn sight better out of the box than mine was. Mine (Series 70) came new with lots of slop built into it (the collet bushing had a finger break off in the first year I had it) and a trigger that felt like it had been put together on the ground at a gravel pit. I wound up learning to fit up 1911's because of its shortcomings.
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  #39  
Old 12-17-2013, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by unclenick View Post
Welcome to the forum. Rules are to join in and have fun and play nicely with the rest of us kids.

With lead bullets, to stop leading it is critical that the bullet fully obturate (seal off) the bore. Barrels have tolerances. My first Goldcup's NM barrel was .4515", for example, and not the exact .451 nominal value. As a result, I would not get complete obturation with a .451" bullet unless the pressure were high enough to upset the bullet into the bore. Since I was shooting light target loads with a hardcast bullet I couldn't count on that, so .452" was a no-brainer.

That said, there seems to be a phenomenon, not fully explained to my satisfaction, in which many guns seem to like the cast lead to be squeezed down a bit by the bore. If you try slugging a bore with pure lead and then with a harder alloy, you feel the difference immediately. The soft lead pushes through and becomes loose after passing through a constriction of any kind. A hard alloy is springy and keeps pressed hard against the bore. My suspicion is that this improves the seal and helps prevent both gas cutting and distortion, especially where there are minor bore irregularities. But that may not be all there is to it.

More recently, I've been shooting Lee tumble-lube bullets through a Clark barrel I have that is just about exactly .4510" in the grooves, so just about exactly nominal. The tumble lube bullets are about .453" out of my molds, and they shoot even better than .452's. So a bit of squeeze with the cast bullets is desirable.

A 200 grain cast SWC over 4.8 grains of Hodgdon Universal will function all my hardball guns just fine. I've not tried it in anything shorter than a Commander, though, and still shorter pistols typically have stiffer springs. Nonetheless, it's a good place to start. 4.5 grains of Bullseye would be about the same.
****, Haven't heard anyone mention a Clark barrel in years.

We normally used Bar Sto for match guns, Colt NM barrels for everything else. Without slugging the bore, I strongly suggest .452 and hard Lead for Average commercial auto's.

I still use the same old load I have for years, for practice .50 231, Fed primers and H&G #68 SWC bullets. Yes I still use a Star. Don't use CCI because in the 80's they shipped a bunch of them that were not "round"... needless to say I think you understand that problem.

For serious stuff, 5.8 of 231. Lot of the old guys have moved to Titegroup... I haven't tried it yet. Mickey Fowler suggested it, I need to call him one of these days.


Right now I'm loading for me and friends, everything from 3" to 5 Govts types (including a NM 1911A1 I'm currently using until I get my Baer) to a early Para-Ord.

Only caveat about this one, with the Para-ord mags, best to keep the OAL length a bit shorter. 1.255 to 1.257.
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  #40  
Old 12-17-2013, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Philt1 View Post
Thx for the reply unclenick , so i would need to measure my barrel lans to determine what diameter im gong to start with correct ?

So you recommend that if i mic out at .4526" i might wanna start with the .453 the get the seal you are referring too right ?

and if i mic out less than the .451 try the 451- hope im understanding this correctly

so IF you have issues leading your barrel you go up in size to resolve

Thx again

p.s. I WAS LOOKING AT OREGON TRAIL laser cut SWC BB on cabelas , what does BB stand for
and do you crimp
For practice it really is better to start with cast bullets. Strongly suggest the H&G#68 SWC (200 grains). A lot of us old Cooper types still use it. Normally we use a good crimp (so you can actually see it). Most common .45acp shoots fine with the 452 bullets. It's pretty much all I've used since 75. One caveat, never ask about some of the loads we tried... it was "interesting".

Technically you want to seat the bullet to 1.260, but I don't know anyone that does that anymore. 1.255 to 1.257 works well.

PS this round also works well int he Ruger .45acp Blackhawk.

There is a company in TX that makes great lead bullets. I know I've tried them after the source I used to use started producing some sloppy bullets. Contact [email protected] and have them send you some samples. They really are nice.

Or just go to: bulletworks.com.

They're old "practical" pistol shooters (as we used to call ourselves)... You'll note that the .452 bullets are the most commonly used.
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