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consistent weights for flake powders like red and blue dot

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by tlfreek, Mar 21, 2011.

  1. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    I am struggling a bit with my bushing style powder measure to produce consistent weighs when using flake type powders. I have googled this and found that others have also had this problem, but have not seen what is done to resolve the problem. I suspect I may need another measure, but thought I would stick this here and ask for insight just in case any of you have run into this before.

    thanks
     
  2. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I weigh each charge. Simple as that. Doesn't matter if it's 3.5 grains of Clays in a 9mm or 42 grains of 3031 in a 30-40 Krag round. I weigh each one.

    Damn slow but also damn accurate.
     
  3. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    yea. It's coming to that which is what I want to avoid especially when I am loading 300 45 or 44. I have had good luck with H110 and HP38 powders they weight very consistently through a bushing powder measure, which is what I will go back to if I cant figure a better method on how to use the dot line of powders.
     
  4. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I just finished 500 .45ACP for my son and I'm at 500rds complete of a 700 rd batch of 9mm. So I know what you mean.
     
  5. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    I find that if I give the hopper a light double-tap with a knuckle before each dump,consitincy improves dramatically..or so the digital scale shows.Give it a try,I think you will like the results.
     
  6. Shooter98

    Shooter98 McMinnville, Or. Member

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    I struggled with reloading for a bit at first because of this very problem. I started out with a Lee powder measure, noticed inconsistancies so I bought a RCBS and had the same problem. Bought a Lyman, same thing but a little better. Now, since I am trying to produce match grade rifle ammo I was concerned about weight big time and wanted no variance. I bought a business quality digital scale and started pulling each charge a little lite and using a powder trickler to work up to the exact weight. It takes me a while to load 100 rounds, but the chrono proves it was worth it. Before my velocity spreads were all over, now they're within + or - 10 fps usually.
     
  7. Izzy

    Izzy Oakridge Active Member

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    This is the way I load, every thing!!! If you want it done right, do it your self!!!
     
  8. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    a good scale is critical. Try spraying your powder hopper and the internals where powder touches with hornady dry lube. It works pretty good.
     
  9. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    thanks guys - I'll just fill the cases to the top and call it good...weighing powder is stupid.
     
  10. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Stop seating the bullet when you hear the powder crunching.
     
  11. Mica

    Mica Eugene Active Member

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    I new I was over compacting my powder.
     
  12. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    I don't load my 9mm's anywhere near full load so I don't mind a little variation, but I did some pretty extensive validations on spreads from the dillon 550B dispenser and with flake type powders, I'm close enough to the target weight that I don't worry about it. In fact, my last chrono test showed I was about a 10 fps standard deviation....That's about the best I've ever seen. As for performance, lets just say my loads offer less variation than my lack of talent in shooting them!
     
  13. turq

    turq Molino,oregon Member

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    You mention HP-38 and H 110 two powders on opposite ends of the burn rate chart...?
    You could try a powder in between, find some Power Pistol next time you are trying different powders. It has lots of room from starting to max charge wt. on most cal. It meters great and may make your bushing throw measure shine. Also the pressure level to get good velocity makes it a personal favorite of mine. I load 380 ACP and 40S&W and 38 Super.The printed Alliant Manual is great; although it lists pressure in PSI. Good Luck
     
  14. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    yes - one is a pistol powder the other a large rifle, the intent here is that because of the physcal attributes of the powder it lends itself to much more consistent accurate in a bushing type powder measure. the flake powder is where I struggle a bit. if I cannot figure it out I'll go back to the others which work best for my setup.
     
  15. Shooter98

    Shooter98 McMinnville, Or. Member

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    Yea, unfortunately that is what took me forever to figure out. Which one worked best for me. lol..
     
  16. HappyRoman

    HappyRoman Sherwood Forest Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Red and Blue dot will settle down after 10-25 loads. Dillon suggests that you adjust the powder measure weighing each load after you discard the 1st 10 loads. Discarding does not mean throw the powder away, but return it to the powder measure.
    Once you have closed in on the target wtg, throw 5 charges and weigh each.. if you are there, then do the same after emptying the little scale dish with a total of 10 more loads. the total should give you a very respectable average. If not restart same procedure.
    Red dot and bullseye load a nice round at 5.0 grs for a 230 cast bullet for the 45ACP. 4.5 grs. Bullseye or Redot should also do in 9mm w/115gr bullet. just my .02c worth
     
  17. humdrum

    humdrum Lakewood Active Member

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    +1
     
  18. Browning55

    Browning55 Seattle-Everett Area Active Member

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    Blue dot just doesn't measure terribly accurately. Even with pistol cases, it's a good idea to check carefully under good light and check the charged weight. At the high end, I'd go with weighing virtually every charge just like rifle cases.
     
  19. XSubSailor

    XSubSailor SW WA Active Member

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    I load on a LnL progressive press and use a lot of Unique and Bullseye. I'd highly recommend the LnL powder measure for flake powders. I have no problem achieving +/- 0.1 gn. If you buy it new, clean it well before use...they use a waxy preservative on the rotor drum and internals which will cause you fits if it's not squeaky clean first.
     
  20. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    I've never been a real fan of the "drop 10 charges and weigh" method. Even the most erratic of powder measures can look good with this averaging method. If some charges are as much as .3 over (the largest error I have ever seen in a powder measure), and others .3 under it still shows "On the Money" .It's somewhat like standing with one foot in a bucket of real hot water, and the other in a bucket of ice water. The average temperature would indicate that you're comfortable. Reality is ---

    It's my preference, when using a progressive press where every powder charge can't be weighed (practically), to use a powder that plays well with my measuring system. When loading "single stage" I use an RCBS Chargemaster and every charge is weighed. This covers the "metering" issues with those difficult powders.

    Over the years I found that whenever using a traditional powder measure, whether a slide type like on the MEC shotshell loaders or Dillon Progressives, or the rotor style of the Lyman, RCBS, and others, the key to good consistent loads is a good consistent technique. Making sure the measure is clean and making your "stroke" uniform goes a long way to dropping even loads. Watch for sources of vibration on the loading bench that can compact powder in the reservoir. If your tumbler/vibrator is running on the bench then the powder will settle into the measuring cavity at a different rate than if not. If running then keep a uniform rhythm.

    One more tip I learned from others, use Bounce drier sheets to wipe the inside of plastic powder reservoirs. Static cling can cause variations in settling. I also like to take a #2 pencil and coat all the inside surfaces of the metal "rotor" or "slide" when breaking in a new powder measure. The graphite in the pencil lead is both conductive, which bleeds off static electricity, and a dry lube. It helps a new powder measure get started in dropping even loads sooner than just waiting for enough "powder dust" to do the job.

    Just some thoughts on the topic.