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  1. #1
    GCTracker is offline Junior Member
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    Loading the 230 gr. Gold Dot HP

    Picked up a bunch of 230 gr. Gold Dot HP bullet. I plan on loading them up for home defense and storing them away for a bad day. Wondering if anyone has worked up any good loads they might want to share.

  2. #2
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    What caliber? For the .45 ACP, I presume?

    I use six grains of 231 for everything from 200 to 230 grains.
    It seems to be just fine, but I've never chronographed it, or tested it for pressure. It doesn't show any pressure signs in my 1911s.

    (Anybody who unquestioningly uses loading data picked up from a forum posting is foolishly taking his life and safety in his own hands. The fact that the loads I've mentioned work satisfactorily in my pistols has no bearing upon how they will work in yours. Start with five grains of 231, or less, and work up to a more powerful load, testing for pressure and velocity as you go along.)

  3. #3
    rex
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    Good point by Steve,always doublecheck data against a few manuals,the bullet or powder manufacturer and work up.The size of the chamber can influence pressure among other things.

    Steve's loads are in line.I shot lots of lead before plated at 5.8gr under a 200 and that was max as listed.I have no pressure problems but I wouldn't try going more with a fast powder.I know people that have pushed the limits but they know individual powders and internal ballistics better than the majority of us.

    This is getting down to splitting hairs,but watch the cases you use if you run the upper limit.Remington is thin walled with a greater case volume than Federal or Starline,this also means your die setup will have higher bullet to case tension in the latter.While it's basically very small,pushing the line in Remington cases could push you over in the others.Some powders are more forgiving than others,the amount of time the cases have been used,yadayada.The majority of my shooting was old mixed cases and 231 was good,when the case mouth split I just threw them away upon inspection.Good powder,and HP-38 is basically the same powder that is so close in weight and performance you'd think they are the same relabled. Watch switching primers too,some powders are sensitive to a change,others don't care.Whenever you change a component,even the lot the powder came from,you should always back off and do a quick rebuild to your load.If you're doing pussycat loads it isn't as bad as pushing the line.Be safe.

  4. #4
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    What caliber? For the .45 ACP, I presume?

    I use six grains of 231 for everything from 200 to 230 grains.
    It seems to be just fine, but I've never chronographed it, or tested it for pressure. It doesn't show any pressure signs in my 1911s.

    (Anybody who unquestioningly uses loading data picked up from a forum posting is foolishly taking his life and safety in his own hands. The fact that the loads I've mentioned work satisfactorily in my pistols has no bearing upon how they will work in yours. Start with five grains of 231, or less, and work up to a more powerful load, testing for pressure and velocity as you go along.)
    What does your loading manual spec for that load?

  5. #5
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernBoy View Post
    What does your loading manual spec for that load?
    I haven't checked in years.
    And I'm at my computer, in our office, and the books are in the dance-studio's basement, so I ain't gonna look right now.
    But my memory says that rex's 5.8 grains of 231 was the maximum listed load, under a 230-grain bullet.

    To take care of the thin-walled-case issue, and varying bullet-pull, I taper-crimp everything I load.
    It seems to work.

  6. #6
    jdeere9750 is offline Member
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    Loading the 230 gr. Gold Dot HP

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    I haven't checked in years.
    And I'm at my computer, in our office, and the books are in the dance-studio's basement, so I ain't gonna look right now.
    But my memory says that rex's 5.8 grains of 231 was the maximum listed load, under a 230-grain bullet.
    Hornady (8th Edition):

  7. #7
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    OK. So?
    Judging by the page from the Hornady manual you've reproduced, an even six grains of 231 should get a 230-grain bullet up to 850fps, or maybe just a little faster.
    That's still within the proper limits for a 1911. (It was designed for 230 grains at 850fps.)

    I use this load only because I've always used it. It dependably made "major caliber" in any IPSC test ever devised, and, since that's what I was competing in at the time, I adopted it from the other .45 ACP/1911 shooters around me.
    I regularly check my brass for overpressure signs, but since the 1911 is so strongly built, my point of view is: "No worries, mate."

  8. #8
    rex
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    My 5.8 was for a lead 200gr as stated,but is in line with 230 jacketed.Always check data as we said.Out of curiosity I pulled out 4 manuals I found quickly,Speer 10th from 1979,Lyman 46th from '82,47th from '92 and 49 from '08.Lyman 46 and 47 list no 230 jacketed,to my surprize.

    Speer 10th listed 5.1-5.6 of 231 for 230 jacketed RN
    Lyman 49th was 5.2-5.8 for 230 jacketed RN,neither listed HP above 200gr I believe.

    That Hornady is right there.This info is not absolute,and can't be.What is in the book is that bullet,case,powder and primer in that specific gun or reciever,shot on that day's atmospheric conditions.They could change a primer or lot of powder and get different readings on pressure to alter the data.If you compare everyone's current data for a powder with a said weight bullet,there's a variation.All this info is a guide to be compared to get a range of working weights.Start low and work up is the rule,not a suggestion.That is with the exception of a few powders that have an extremely narrow operating range like 296 or H110.The difference can be .2-.3 from start to max,and I believe these are mainly the nitro-glicerine based poders over the nitro-cellulose ones.

    Unless this stuff is your life,and even theN, there are no absolutes.A max in your gun may not reach the published max,but a new lot of powder bought next year may let you hit it.I don't know if I said it in this thread,but conversely you can pass a max listed load safely-AS LONG AS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING!What would be a max load for me in 100 degree weather will be wimpy in the middle of a Wisconsin winter.Reverse that and you can have a blowout.The latter is a little out of scope for this conversation but it shows there are too many variables to set an absolute value.

    This turned into a good thread.

    Forgot,the data listed is normally conservative for safety and liability sake,unless noted in the data.296 would be an example of that note,dink around with some stuff and it gets violent real fast.

  9. #9
    jdeere9750 is offline Member
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    Loading the 230 gr. Gold Dot HP

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    OK. So?
    Judging by the page from the Hornady manual you've reproduced, an even six grains of 231 should get a 230-grain bullet up to 850fps, or maybe just a little faster.
    That's still within the proper limits for a 1911. (It was designed for 230 grains at 850fps.)

    I use this load only because I've always used it.
    Wasn't suggesting there was anything wrong with your load. I don't know enough to travel that path. Just provided the pic as a reference since mine was laying on the counter beside me and yours weren't handy.

    I have particular interest in this since I am about to get into reloading.

  10. #10
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    OK.
    Thanks.

    My six-grains-of-231 load was mostly used with lead bullets, 200- and 230-grain, in competition and practice.
    But I have also used it with jacketed 230-grain bullets, without problems.

  11. #11
    jdeere9750 is offline Member
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    Loading the 230 gr. Gold Dot HP

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    To take care of the thin-walled-case issue, and varying bullet-pull, I taper-crimp everything I load.
    It seems to work.
    Can you expand upon this? I was under the assumption that everyone crimped to some degree, whether with a factory crimp die or taper crimp die. (I really haven't got a handle on the difference between the two.) I was told it was best to seat the bullet and crimp with separate dies.

  12. #12
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Crimping:
    Most handgun cartridges need to be crimped—that is, the case mouth must be tightened around the bullet. The point is to keep the bullet in place while other rounds are being fired, and while recoil inertia is trying to unseat them.
    • Revolver cartridges need the strongest crimp, since there's nothing to help retain the bullet of a chambered round. The normal pistol-cartridge seating die includes a shoulder that will roll-crimp a case's mouth, if the die body is screwed deeply enough into the press. One normally sets the seating stem and the die body so that the bullet is finally seated at the same time that the die is roll-crimping the case's mouth into one of the bullet's lubrication-or-crimping grooves.
    • Straight-wall semi-auto cartridges should never be roll-crimped because normally such a cartridge headspaces upon the case's mouth. Also, the magazine helps retain bullets in their cases, so a strong crimp is less important. Instead of using the seating die to form the crimp, one normally uses a separate taper-crimp die. The taper crimp leaves enough of the case's mouth exposed to permit proper headspacing. (I even taper-crimp my .30-'06 cartridges!)

    People don't believe this, but it's true:
    In the normal 1911, with the original-design's internal extractor, the .45 case headspaces on the extractor!
    It's not supposed to. It's supposed to headspace on the case mouth.
    But if you apply a deep taper-crimp, or even a roll-crimp, things will still work correctly and the gun will fire without a problem.
    It's a matter of geometry, and that the case feeds straight up the breech-face and right under the extractor's hook.

    If this doesn't help, ask further questions.

  13. #13
    rex
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    It is best to seat and crimp with different dies,but that's a topic that can cause debate.

    To start the bullet the case needs belled or the expander plug on rifle dies does the expansion to give the bullet room to press in without buckling the case.

    On handgun cases you either taper crimp for pistols where the seperate seating and crimp comes in,or you roll crimp for a revolver all in the same step as seating.On a revolver the bullet is still moving as the brass is rolled into the bullet's crimp groove.

    The taper crimp is meant to iron out the bell and get the case mouth ironed back out,not to actually squeeze the mouth into the bullet which can happen.Crimping a Remington case properly will cause a Fedaral or Starline case to imprint into the bullet,slightly.The problem with seating and crimping in one shot is that if the case is going to imprint into the bullet,the bullet is still moving like a revolver but there's nowhere for the brass to go.This can either cause bullet damage in minor cases or buckle the case if major.You get poor accuracy or a round that won't chamber.

    The factory crimp die is a solution to improper reloading technique or setup.What it does is irom out the bell as a normal taper crimp does,but it also re-resizes the whole whole case.If you are needing this die,it's usually due to a tight chamber,an oversized bullet for the use,or improper setup of the normal dies.If you feel pressure after the crimp with this die,you are squeezing the whole round to a smallr diameter.That tells me your sizing die is too big and the bullet too large,right from the start,and the original problem is getting a bandaid.Similar to curing 1911 feeding hitches with a stronger recoil spring,it it forces the problem away instead of fixing it.I don't use any Lee equipment,I see them as the bottom of the line in the industry.They work,but for a few bucks more the quality and precision is well worth it.

  14. #14
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    rex, I gotta disagree a little...
    1. There are many taper-crimp dies out there. Lee is not the only seller.
    2. When I loaded for competition and training, I taper crimped (and still do) for the reason some people wear both suspenders and a belt: To make sure no bullet would displace and cause a jam.
    3. Loading lead bullets, even bevelled-bottom ones, can still leave the case mouth expanded just a little. Taper-crimping is insurance. (See #2, above.)

    Is it necessary? Probably not, in most situations.
    But it certainly is cheap insurance.

  15. #15
    CPT.ZERO's Avatar
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    Steve,

    excuse me..... what a fun ... it seems to read the old unkle suggestions.... but how can you give these numbers? ... if the guy reloads for a long barrell, the weapon opens with flames from the ejecting port!!!!! ... thanks god you are a senior member

  16. #16
    jdeere9750 is offline Member
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    Loading the 230 gr. Gold Dot HP

    Rex and Steve, thank you very much. After much reading today, here and elsewhere, I'm starting to see the light.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    [...]
    2. When I loaded for competition and training, I taper crimped (and still do) for the reason some people wear both suspenders and a belt: To make sure no bullet would displace and cause a jam.
    [...]
    Is it necessary? Probably not, in most situations.
    But it certainly is cheap insurance.
    This was my exact thought on why I might select a factory crimp die over a standard taper crimp die. I think I would be more concerned about the reliability of my rounds and gun, than I would be with the negative effects of the post sizing (if there are any.) I do understand that if a large portion of rounds are getting post sized, it is an indication of problems elsewhere. But, is it really a big deal when a very small percentage of rounds are getting post sized?

    Keep in mind, all of this is coming from a newbie that has never touched a press. These are just the conclusions I have drawn from my research.

  17. #17
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CPT.ZERO View Post
    Steve,

    excuse me..... what a fun ... it seems to read the old unkle suggestions.... but how can you give these numbers? ... if the guy reloads for a long barrell, the weapon opens with flames from the ejecting port!!!!! ... thanks god you are a senior member
    Signore Capitano Zero;
    Parlo tedeschi i francesi, ma non parlato italiano.
    And your English is as bad as my Italian.
    Thus, I'm not certain that I understand your comment.
    The .45 ACP load I specified is not for use in a long barrel. But if it were used in a long barrel, the powder would be completely burned well before the pistol's ejection port opened.

    I am a senior member because I have led a careful life. Thus it has become a long life as well. Had I not been careful, I would not be here to become a senior member.

    Does the Italian language permit word-play (puns)? So: I have retained all of my members, including the most important one, and they have become senior too.

  18. #18
    CPT.ZERO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    Signore Capitano Zero;
    Parlo tedeschi i francesi, ma non parlato italiano.
    And your English is as bad as my Italian.
    Thus, I'm not certain that I understand your comment.
    The .45 ACP load I specified is not for use in a long barrel. But if it were used in a long barrel, the powder would be completely burned well before the pistol's ejection port opened.

    I am a senior member because I have led a careful life. Thus it has become a long life as well. Had I not been careful, I would not be here to become a senior member.

    Does the Italian language permit word-play (puns)? So: I have retained all of my members, including the most important one, and they have become senior too.
    Right

  19. #19
    rex
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    Steve,I was typing fast on lunch break as you were at the same time (yeah,I'm sloow).I agree with your post before mine,dead nuts and more technical on design.I think you misconstrued my post,possibly because it was typed as fast as I could.I believe the Lee die is a bandaid,and I don't use any of Lee's equipment.My old RCBS dies size the case for everything but the tightest chamber I would say,but I haven't tried them in a Nowlin barrel,a BarSto is no prob.I seat only,then use a Dillon crimp die to iron out the mouth back to norm at .470/.469 in mixed brass.

    I see quite a few people swear by Lee's die,and they need it to get reliable fit.Since straight walled pistol brass doesn't lenghthen like bottlenecks,that means something is wrong to begin with if it won't chamber in a mid spec SAAMI chamber.If this die is needed,it also rules out the bullet shoulder or ogive bottoming out prematurely.The round is just too large in diameter due to the sizing die being off,not removing the bell completely,the bullet is too large (with minimal exception to chamber/bore diameter),and case bulging.The Lee die will shrink the whole ID back down,but it's an unnecessary step to correct a previous problem.

    Capt Zero,there is a little language barrier here,no fault of yours.As Steve said,these are pistol loads and not well suited to much longer barrels.If you are getting flames blowing out the breech,it's unlocking too soon.Could be an issue with the gun or could be a powder that will work but is a poor choice for that particular gun/barrel length.Since I'm 1/2 asleep,I'd guess the powder is way too slow and/or too much of it for tha application.

  20. #20
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    6.1Gr. of Vihtavuori N340 yields the same velocity (830fps) as factory 230GD loads as chronoed out of my M&P45 (4.5" barrel)

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