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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at loading up some 300 & 310 grain gas checks...in 454 casull mostly.
I've loaded 300 gr. jacketed for my 454 and the jackets came off with around 26 3/4 grains of 2400. Cases stuck also. (bullets were represented to me as being for 454,...but were obviously for long colts.
So now I've got some questions...And I'm wiser.(I'm fine with the XPT Mags, but they're expensive for practice).

1) Am I safe with full pressures when using cast boolits with gas checks?..(The only jacketed I can readily buy that I know will work are the XTP mags.. and aren't cheap,..so don't want to use them for practice.)

2) Same questions with 44 mag. I've reloaded lead, and also jacketed (never had a problem with either..but haven't loaded 300 gr.). But haven't done gas checks yet.
Was thinking (after doing a lot of reading, etc.,) that maybe I should go gas check all the way around.

You may ask why the 300 gr.?
..A few years ago a bear got a kid and partially ate him at a campground. Within the next 6 months I had two 44 mags.. And now I have a habit of buying guns and shooting poor defenseless tin cans so if I run into a bear I'll be a good enough shot to only need one shot.
That should also explain why the 300 gr. instead of 240 orf 250 or 260.

Yes, I even bought 45-70 just to be sure.

OK,
Whatever experience you have that could help, I'd appreciate the info. I don't have a chrony...so compared to all you guys...I'm mostly 'in the dark".
 

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Full pressure (safe pressure) by definition is safe. It just doesn't take the same amount of powder with different bullet types to get there. Lead is complicated by the fact that different alloys have different hardness and density. Softer bullets will upset at lower pressure than hard bullets. That can cause them to widen in the forcing cones of revolvers, in particular, which raises pressure.

We have a recent (within the last two weeks) thread in which someone cracked the forcing cone in his SBH revolver by using a 2400 load with bullets cast of wheel weights that was intended only for bullets cast of linotype, which would have been both harder and lighter coming from the specified mold. The maximum for Lyman #2 alloy with the same mold was 20% less 2400, and he missed that. With unhardened wheel weights it would have an even lower limit.

So, you have to do some deciding about alloys and hardness and all that. Very hard cast bullets like those sold by the board sponsor can be driven pretty hard.

Pressure signs like sticky ejection from the cylinder cannot be ignored while you go on shooting them up or you'll get cracks or lose a chamber in your cylinder and the top strap of the frame with it, eventually. Pull all copies of such a load and put them back together with 5% less powder than it takes to begin feeling sticky extraction. Elmer Keith used to work up loads that way. Work up from low in small steps, find where they just start to get sticky, then back down.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
When using gas checks, does that change how you look at loading lead (other than the possibility of leading)...Or do you just use lead info?
 

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Just use lead info. Pay attention to alloy specifications and reduce them if you are using something softer. The load info is based partly on the pressure needed to start the bullet into the rifling, and the check doesn't change that. They'll have some effect when the base goes in, but by then the bullets is moving pretty fast so it isn't very significant. The check does allow you longer exposures to hot gas, where a plain base will lose metal from it, and it reduces erosion due to gas bypassing the bullet early on or when it clears the barrel/cylinder gap of a revolver.
 

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We have a recent (within the last two weeks) thread in which someone cracked the forcing cone in his SBH revolver by using a 2400 load with bullets cast of wheel weights that was intended only for bullets cast of linotype, which would have been both harder and lighter coming from the specified mold. The maximum for Lyman #2 alloy with the same mold was 20% less 2400, and he missed that. With unhardened wheel weights it would have an even lower limit.

Thanks Nick. Still waiting for the gun to get back from Ruger.Puke.Even the strong guns will break.This is a good sit and a lot of these guys know what there talking about.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
By cheap,
I mean free.

just kidding.

It's just that 454 stuff is hard to come by unless I go to cabelas and open my wallet.

When using XTP mag 300 grain bullets, I think 100 rounds costs. 37 bucks for bullets, ten bucks for powder, 4 bucks for primers,. (and they say the brass on a 454 doesn't last more than six loadings...which I don't know from personal experience yet). So when you run those numbers....it just seems a little high.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, let me ask this.
What is the upper limit of velocity for a jacketed bullet made for a 45 long colt?..before things start flying apart?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
By the way,
The bullets with gas checks that I want to start using have a BHN of 15 and are supposed to be very close to lymans # 2.
20 percent less powder. That is a lot when it comes to powder.
 

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Puke
I've been shooting the 454 Casull SRH for along time! Your first go around you obviously were using 300 gr XTP's! They are design for the 45 LC and should be limited to no more then 1300 fps in 454 Casull! Ungas checked lead also limit to 1200 fps!
I don't use 2400 I found H110 or W296 are better powders for the 454. I cast my own 300-325gr bullets out of WW and run them 1650 and 1575 fps each! Though I found the 240 XTP mags are really all most folks need for just about anything in the lower 48! Run them at 1800 fps and you'll stomp anything you need to!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Powder had been VERY SCARCE around here for quite a while (although things have been getting a little better lately),..and I had a chance to get 3 pounds of 2400 when powders were hard to find,..so I bought them. I like 296 and 110 also, but they were nearly non existent for a while,..so I thought 2400 was a very good second best for both the 44 and 454. And nobody had any idea when powders the powder and primer shelves were going to start being stocked again.

So, would you treat Sierra jacketed long colt bullets with the same 1300 fps max?
 

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I've got a SRH 454 and for my practice loads I use Trail Boss, 8 grns for 300 grn hardcast. This supposedly produces 865 fps MV. I have some 335 grn hardcast that I load with 6.8 grns......780 fps or thereabouts. About the only time I shoot full power loads is when I am actually working them up for hunting purposes. I've even loaded Bullseye with the 300 grn, 6.5 grns supposedly producing 800 fps.

I've used 2400 for the 454 and have no issues with it. Freedom Arms website shows some starting and max loads with 2400. Their max with 2400 and a 300 grn jacketed was 27 grns producing 55,000 cup.....1656 fps.

All the hardcast I shoot have gas checks, even the practice loads.

Anyway, I don't know if the SRH will shoot loose if I fire heavy all the time. I think it might loosen a few of my fillings, however! Shooting light loads helps me develop good marksmanship habits and, you know, when you're hunting you never notice the recoil. This also helps me preserve brass. I keep the practice brass separate from the hunting brass and the practice brass seems to last forever. I believe the loads I mentioned only generate 15,000 to 20,000 c.u.p.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Puke
I've been shooting the 454 Casull SRH for along time! Your first go around you obviously were using 300 gr XTP's! They are design for the 45 LC and should be limited to no more then 1300 fps in 454 Casull! Ungas checked lead also limit to 1200 fps!
I don't use 2400 I found H110 or W296 are better powders for the 454. I cast my own 300-325gr bullets out of WW and run them 1650 and 1575 fps each! Though I found the 240 XTP mags are really all most folks need for just about anything in the lower 48! Run them at 1800 fps and you'll stomp anything you need to!
I was under the inpression that wheel weights were too soft for high velocities???????
1650 and 1575 fps. seems to be awfully hot for wheel weights...Am I missing something?? or needing some more information?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Powder had been VERY SCARCE around here for quite a while (although things have been getting a little better lately),..and I had a chance to get 3 pounds of 2400 when powders were hard to find,..so I bought them. I like 296 and 110 also, but they were nearly non existent for a while,..so I thought 2400 was a very good second best for both the 44 and 454. And nobody had any idea when the powder and primer shelves were going to start being stocked again.

So, would you treat Sierra jacketed long colt bullets with the same 1300 fps max?
 

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Puke,
I bought that "caliber specific" reloading manual for the 454. It shows Sierra 300 grn JSP loads up to 1550 fps.
With 2400 powder and that bullet, 1200 fps with 21.1 grains up to 26.1 grns producing 1500 fps. Specific Warning!!! Do not exceed 1550 fps!! Right there on the Sierra load data.

With the 240 grn JHC Sierra, Do Not Exceed 1400 fps!!! You wouldn't want to accidently mix that bullet up with the XTP Mag on a 2000 fps load.

For the 300 grn XTP Mag, Hornady data shows 27.8 grns of 2400 as the max.....1550 fps. (296 will get about 100 fps more MV but I don't think any critters will care!). Their starting load of 2400 is 25.4 grains.

For cheap loads, tin can killers, I shoot Precision Delta 230 grn FMJs with 7 grns of Bullseye. That pretty much replicates 45 ACP velocities (850 fps) and those bullets cost me $116 per thou delivered! Primer + powder total is about $.06. So, whats that? About 18 cents per round to practice with my 454!! I've got a batch of 454 Starline brass on their 15th loading with my light loads using Trail Boss and Bullseye! Accuracy is decent enough and I enjoy the practice.
I hate wasting expensive bullets on tin cans!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I have a few of those caliber specific manuals. But I still haven't gotten the 454 one.
I'm glad you had one around to give me a heads up on some of that.
 

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I'd give Dave Jennings a call at Montana Bullet Works and tell him what you are after. He knows his stuff and makes great hand cast bullets.
 
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