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I have used Unique in loading 38/357, 45 ACP, and 45 Colt for some time, but lately I have been wondering how AA#5 and Universal compare.  What are some of your experiences with them?  Are they better?

I have tried Universal a little, but haven't done any extensive testing yet.  I have never tried AA#5.

Have any of you switched from Unique to either of these as your all around medium burning powder?

Best Regards,
Mark in GA
 

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Mark...As a user of AA5, I jumped in here. First of all Unique has be very popular for a long, long time! We all know it burns somewhat dirty, but within its limets, it has produced accurate loads for as long as I remember. The next question..Are you satisfied with the velocity/weight of the loads you are getting with Unique? If so, by all means move over the AA5!!!It meters like a dream, clean, and accurate. Pinning a burning rate on AA5 has been somewhat of a problem....some say faster that Unique, others say slower. I lean towards it being slightly slower than Unique. On the other hand...If you want a powder with the burn rate between Unique and WW296/H110, I would suggest 800X. It doesnot meter well , but for those that weigh and dip , it has some things going for it that are now being tested. There are lot of the older shooters that want to move up just a notch from Unique, but not up to the WW296/H110/#2400 level, and 800X seems, at this time, to be where we will land. Back to AA5...I have never used mag primers with it and don't think their needed.
Best Regards, James

(Edited by James Gates at 6:31 pm on Mar. 27, 2001)
 

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I too find that AA #5 is a good replacement powder for Unique, but just a tad slower in burning rate in my applications.  It also has a significantly lower flame temperature!

If you are looking for a direct replacement for Unique, Universal Clays has to be the answer!  In all the loads I've developed over the last 20+ years with Unique, I've found that I can directly replace it with Universal Clays, grain for grain, and the differences in performance are so small that they aren't worth mentioning.   What is significant is the ease with which Universal Clays meters through a measure, and the consistent charges thrown by a variety of measures.   Also how stunningly clean it burns.

Universal is a great addition to anyone's powder magazine!

God Bless,

Marshall
 

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I will concur with Marshall regarding Universal. It is outstanding. Since I don't do many barnburner handgun loads, Universal has become my primary propellant in .357 Magnum, .44 Special, and .45 ACP. It is truly amazing how clean it burns. I wholeheartedly endorse it.

I have used AA#5 very little, mostly in .45's a number of years ago. Seemed to be okay.
 

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Boy am I glad I found this thread. I just ordered the caliber conversion "stuff" for my XL-650 to turn out general purpose .45 Colt loads a little faster than the single stage.

I was wondering what powder I'd use to replace Unique. Now I'll try Universal.
 

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Hello everyone,
It's been awhile since I participated on the forum.  This thread grabed my attention because I have recently been experimenting with AA5.

This week, I came across the most accurate load ever in my old Mod. 28, 4".  I used a commercial 158 grain hard cast bevel based bullet in Win. 357 cases.  I tumbled the already lubed bullets in Lee liquid alox, then pushed them through the Lee 358 sizer.  This left the sides clean of lube except the groove, the top and the base.  The charge of AA5 was 8.8 grains and the oal was 1.60".  Primers were Win. small pistol standard.  At 25 yards, bagged and single action I got 5 groups of 1 1/4" to 1 1/2".  It blew my mind.  I estimate the velocity at approx. 1200 fps.  Easy extraction and no over pressure signs.  This is the tightest accuracy my 50 year old eyes and hands have achieved with any service type handgun with open sights.

You sure get alot more rounds loaded with a pound of AA5 compared to 2400 or H110.  It is a step down from the maximun velocities achievable with the slow burners.  AA5 goes through the Dillon powder measure accurately.

Hey James,
I got a whole bunch of new bulldog pictures on my sight.
Http://www.saber.net/~jr-abs/
Take care,
Jeff
 
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