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  #1  
Old 08-18-2008, 05:19 AM
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Blue Dot Warning


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Just saw this today:
Wholesalers carrying the Blue Dot powder brand from Alliant Powder should inform their retail customers of important safety information. ATK's Commercial Products Division has announced that Alliant Powder's Blue Dot should not be used in the .357 Magnum load when using 125-grain bullets (loads utilizing heavier bullets are acceptable for use with the powder).

Blue Dot powder should not be used with any loadings in the .41 Magnum cartridge.

Use of Blue Dot powder in either of the above mentioned applications could result in a dangerously high-pressure situation, the company announced.
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  #2  
Old 08-18-2008, 09:04 AM
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Good enough. Will make this a "Sticky", along with other powder warnings.

Thanks for the info, Jb.
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  #3  
Old 08-18-2008, 12:42 PM
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I've seen this warning posted elsewhere and had considered putting it up, but have been unable to make sense of it? The company's lawyers are unlikely to let them speak freely about it. We can probably infer they've gotten reports of unexplained spontaneous gun disassemblies in numbers statistically more significant than they've seen with their other powders used in the same chamberings and bullet combinations. That would imply the normal rate of occurance of overcharging has been exceeded. So, they've got something unexplained and are erring on the side of caution.

The odd thing is the .357 caution says bullets heavier than 125 grains are OK, yet Alliant's own load data includes Blue Dot loads for both 158 grain and 110 grain bullets. Just not 125 grain bullets. QuickLOAD shows the peak pressure from filling the powder space 100% with Blue dot gets higher with heavier bullet weights for a given nose form of bullets (all Hornady XTP's, for example) seated to the same COL. So, again, I can't make any sense of it.

Until such time as it is explained, the best thing to do is heed the warning.

P.S. Original warning text:
"ATK Commercial Products
900 Ehlen Drive Anoka, MN 55303
www.atk.com

July 25, 2008

Dear Functional Wholesaler:

Please distribute this letter to all of your customers immediately with instructions for them to do the following:
• Post this letter in a highly visible area of their establishment
• Distribute to their customers as soon as possible
Alliant Powder Blue DotŪ Product Safety Notice

Alliant PowderŪ periodically reviews and tests their published reloading data to verify that recommended recipes have not changed over time.
During the latest review Alliant Powder discovered that Alliant Powder’s Blue DotŪ should not be used in the following applications:
• Blue DotŪ should NOT be used in the 357 Magnum load using the 125 grain projectile (Blue DotŪ recipes with heavier bullet weights as specified in Alliant Powders Reloading Guide are acceptable for use).
• Blue DotŪ should NOT be used in the 41 Magnum cartridge (all bullet weights).
Use of Blue DotŪ in the above cases may cause a high pressure situation that could cause property damage and serious personal injury.

We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause and appreciate your understanding and cooperation in this matter.
Thank you for your cooperation and if you have any questions or concerns please contact me at [email protected] or call me at 540-639-8503.

Dick Quesenberry
Alliant Powder
Product Line Manager"
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Last edited by unclenick; 05-08-2011 at 09:45 AM. Reason: Added original warning text
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  #4  
Old 08-18-2008, 01:26 PM
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Does sound weird, doesn't it?
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  #5  
Old 08-19-2008, 03:40 PM
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I sure hope we get some answers from Alliant soon. I have a lot of cartridges assembled in 41 magnum using Blue Dot.

May or may not be relevent to the warning. I got the magnum speed at well below published maximum loads. I stopped because accuracy and velocity were right near where I wanted to be. I did not explore further.

I'm not real "fired-up" about dis-assembling those loads. I will though, if Alliant shows me a good reason. I have other ammunition to shoot, so I will do that for a time.

I "smell" a lab error?

Cheezywan
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  #6  
Old 08-19-2008, 05:25 PM
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They should have some affected lot numbers out shortly.
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  #7  
Old 08-19-2008, 08:00 PM
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Most of you except Cheezywan have it bass ackwards. There is NOTHING wrong with Blue Dot. No need to recall lot numbers or stop loading it in other rounds.

The problem is (was) lab error. They had a bad day and accidentally ran loads too hot when working up loads for the 125 gr in 357, and also all the loads (couldn't have been many) in 41 Magnum.

Maybe they didn't notice their pressure testing stuff got out of calibration. Maybe they misread a scale, or maybe it was early on the morning after Super Bowl and they were still hung over. Who knows? Whatever the reason, they listed the wrong maximum loads. The tests they ran on THAT DAY or THOSE DAYS were invalid, and so are the loads they developed on those days.

There's no way to say "Just reduce those loads by x%." until they re-do the testing and find out what the correct maximum loads should be. So they simply say "Don't use Blue Dot in these specific instances."

That explains why other bullet weights are fine in 357, why they haven't recalled any lot numbers, why it's still OK to load anything and everything else just as before - but NOT those two situations.

Make sense now?
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  #8  
Old 08-19-2008, 09:16 PM
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Works for me
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  #9  
Old 08-19-2008, 10:14 PM
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So Rocky, If I have loads worked up in my guns that are not showing pressure sights that are below other companies' data, should I be ok to continue using Blue dot with my 125 gr bullets? they are in about the middle of the load data in my Lyman #48.
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  #10  
Old 08-19-2008, 10:39 PM
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Sheez. The only pistol cartridge I load is the 41 mag. I have a cast load with WW296 (Marshall's load), a super high - velocity (cannot publish) WW296 210 grn XTP load (local centerfire pistol match champ), and a blue dot 210 XTP load - what I consider my "light load." 50 rds, no problems, no flattened primers, SUPREME accuracy with the Blue Dot loads. Best of the bunch for grouping/truck gun for hogs on my place. Not paying attention to anything but results.
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  #11  
Old 08-19-2008, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocky Raab View Post
The problem is (was) lab error. They had a bad day and accidentally ran loads too hot when working up loads for the 125 gr in 357, and also all the loads (couldn't have been many) in 41 Magnum. . .
Quote:
Originally Posted by unclenick
. . . We can probably infer they've gotten reports of unexplained spontaneous gun disassemblies in numbers statistically more significant than they've seen with their other powders used in the same chamberings and bullet combinations. . .

Rocky,

I'll bet both our statements are true. They probably screwed up the load development, as you suggest (unless you've got inside information that it happened for sure), and found out from customer reports of guns blown up by their loads that they had a problem.

Part of the reason I think that is reasonable to believe is I had a couple of e-mails back and forth with one of their techs awhile back about a problem I found with one of their recommended .45 ACP loads. It exceeded +P pressures both by calculation in QuickLOAD and by strain gauge measurement in my .45 ACP test barrel. They had it listed as producing 19,000 PSI, IIRC, but calculation and readings had it nearer to 24,000 PSI. They seemed remarkably unconcerned. It was just 5 grains of Bullseye, the old standard military match hardball charge, but they had a COL specified that was only about 1.18" instead of the usual 1.27". That doesn't seem like much, 0.09", but pressures rise fast when you push a bullet into a short straight case. They told me it was short because they'd developed it with flat nose bullets, but they gave the spec for all 230 grain FMJ bullets without providing that bit of information. Morevover, at least with the Hornady 230 grain truncated cone shaped bullet, that fact doesn't help with pressure because the bearing surface is pretty long. I notice their current PDF file manual does not have that load specification.

At any rate, that experience left me with the impression Alliant just hadn't been very careful about their laod testing. I notice their online load data is down now for reworking. Maybe they're getting serious about sorting some of this stuff out?
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Last edited by unclenick; 08-19-2008 at 11:48 PM.
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  #12  
Old 08-20-2008, 05:29 PM
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I wish I still had an inside contact at Alliant, as I do at Hodgdon. Alas, I do not. So I can't positively confirm my post above. It is still the only explanation that fits all the facts, however.

Guys, if you have existing loads that you are comfortable with, go ahead and use them. If you find independently-developed loads from another source (non-Alliant) then you should also feel confident in using that. Just don't use Alliant data, or data copied from Allinat (such as Lee data) until they get this sorted out. One list of loads is bad, and only one. Just avoid that one. It's not that big a hardship.
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  #13  
Old 08-20-2008, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocky Raab View Post

Make sense now?
Thanks for the clarification.

I have some 125 grain medium power level Blue dot loads that work fine in my 4" GP100.

Unless I hear something specific about hot lot #'s, i'll continue to use them.
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  #14  
Old 08-20-2008, 06:44 PM
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Unless they are maximum loads published recently by Alliant, yes, your loads should be just fine. (Terrific, most likely. That's a very good combo.)
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  #15  
Old 02-26-2009, 04:52 PM
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I've been using BD in 38 spl for years with 158g gas check with no ill effects. Any one else use it in 38s?
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  #16  
Old 02-28-2009, 06:54 AM
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yeah, I was using Blue Dot for awhile in 38 special practice loads. Switched back to Unique when the BD ran out.
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  #17  
Old 03-02-2009, 04:57 PM
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it seedem like speer was aware of the problem as all the blue dot loads were backed off considerably compared to older manuals.I believe speer and atk are now affiliated. super low temps could spike hot blue dot loads, check out the bd loads in 357 in the number 11 manual 14.5 behind a 140 jhp is listed as max. 13 grains was a real palm stinger and caused sticky extraction in some guns. the new manuals don't even go as high as the start loads in the 11 manual.
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  #18  
Old 03-27-2009, 06:54 PM
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The email response I got from the manufacturer was that my older blue dot was not the problem. I had bought the powder some time ago. When their warning was issued, I emailed them immediately. It took a couple of responses, but I learned it had to do with a more recent production of the powder than what I had on hand.
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  #19  
Old 08-02-2009, 12:05 PM
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http://www.alliantpowder.com/safety/safetynotice.htm

I noticed that the above link is no longer good. Also no load data for 357 magnum or 41 magnum using Blue Dot.

I did some 41 work today with a new lot of powder. I used 1.3 grains less to get same speed I was getting before.

I wasn't particularly shooting for group today, but I was droping them right where the sights were looking.

Thats all I have on the subject for now.

Cheezywan

Edit to add the fact that 1.3 grains is very near a 10% charge reduction from my previous "safe in my firearm" load.

Good time to add this as well.

CAUTION: This post discusses loads or load data that equals or exceeds published maximums for the cartridge(s) mentioned. Neither the writer, The Shooter's Forum, nor the staff of The Shooter's Forum assume any liability for damage or injury resulting from using this information. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO DUPLICATE THE DESCRIBED LOADS without first working them up from a published safe starting level charge while watching for pressure signs. If you don't know how to do that, don't try.

Last edited by Cheezywan; 08-02-2009 at 04:32 PM. Reason: Add a statistic
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  #20  
Old 01-28-2010, 11:17 AM
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??? How can thay alow such a careless mistake to be put in print and how can we be sure there are not any others thay do not know about yet ??? Guess we will just need to spend our money on other data to feel safe.
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