CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

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CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#1 Post by rockyriverleather » Thu Apr 26, 2018 2:01 pm

Just started reloading with an LNL. I'm using 230g Rainier HP, assorted once fired cases, and the CFE. Hodgdon says 6-6.8 powder, and 1.20 OAL, I began loading a few cartridges, and fired them from my MR 1911u (3.5 barrel). No Chrono yet, but they fired fine, and not too much recoil.
1. The first rounds came out to 1.25/1.27 OAL, and chambered fine from the mag. The 1.20 had a couple hiccups. So, I'm going with the slightly longer OAL, because the firearm says so. Should I reduce to 6 grains to make up for the higher pressure of the longer round?
2. The CFE is a med round ball powder, so it takes up very little case space. Hard to visualize a low charge. I'm not using a cop/stop yet, but am using carbide Lee dies. I didn't want to have to lube the cases, but if I use the expander in the powder drop, I can use the cop or stop, it's not carbide, and I'll have to lube first. PIA, I think with all carbide dies, they would make a carbide PXT. Any suggestions?

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#2 Post by spara » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:32 pm

Re: 1.

Loading longer reduces the pressure if you are using the recommended amount of powder. This is generally true until a bullet is loaded so long that it is touching the lands. http://www.bergerbullets.com/wp-content ... 3/COAL.pdf

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#3 Post by eelj » Thu Apr 26, 2018 4:19 pm

spara wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:32 pm
Re: 1.

Loading longer reduces the pressure if you are using the recommended amount of powder. This is generally true until a bullet is loaded so long that it is touching the lands. http://www.bergerbullets.com/wp-content ... 3/COAL.pdf
As far as touching the lands a good way to visualize it is driving a car up over a curb, it takes less gas if you start away from the curb then if you have the wheels touching.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#4 Post by rockyriverleather » Thu Apr 26, 2018 4:31 pm

Yeh, that's what i had thought, then I went and read something yesterday about the newer powders....lol. Guess I won't trust that anymore...
But I was paying attention to Hodgdon, so wasn't too worried, just wanted to verify my stray thought. Thanks!
Any thoughts on whether to trust the powder cop, or powdercstop. How sensitive can they be?

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#5 Post by shinzen » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:06 pm

What did you wind up getting for your powder check die? I know with the Dillon that I use, it will tell me about a low or high within about .5gr, which is generally fine unless loading in a tight range at the top of it. I think with the other check dies, they are really only going to catch either a double load or a squib. I could be wrong on that though.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#6 Post by rockyriverleather » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:10 pm

I got the hornady cop, but I was looking at the RCBS. I wasn't aware of the Dillon one. I'll have to look at it. Thanks.
Anyone seen a carbide PTX for the hornady powder drop?

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#7 Post by shinzen » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:18 pm

Also, the OAL mentioned is for FP and LRN bullets at 1.20" in the manual. For max length, it looks to be 1.275. I'd expect the HP bullets just need to be longer to get up the feed ramp correctly, they may be catching on the bottom of it otherwise. (That's a guess).

Don't need a carbide expander die- the standard one will work fine with no lube.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#8 Post by rockyriverleather » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:21 pm

i'll try that, thanks again guys
Excellent news about the ptx.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#9 Post by shinzen » Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:26 pm

For the Dillon to go on the Hornady, I got one that was modified for that purpose- but I don't see it on the inline fabrication page anymore, maybe reach out to Dan if you want one
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#10 Post by eelj » Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:10 am

I know on some systems you can mount a little light over the bullet seating stage allowing a good safety look but I suppose if you have a bullet feeder it wouldn't work.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#11 Post by rockyriverleather » Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:32 am

I did set up the UFO Led lighting system on it. I can see it, but these old eyes can't distinguish 4gns from 6.
I like the way the CFE meters, it's pretty consistent, but I may switch to a bulkier powder. It maybe easier to visualize.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#12 Post by CDFingers » Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:56 am

Good thread. I've not used this powder, but I've seen it for sale.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#13 Post by shinzen » Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:59 am

Just double checked the dillon instruction manual- it is also for gross deviations- double or no charge, although I've found it to be a little more sensitive than that personally.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#14 Post by rockyriverleather » Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:15 am

Part of the problem is a confidence level. Until I am sure of my setup and procedures, it's hard to trust the progressive press. But the need for range ammo says I just need to keep at it. It seems none of the powder checks are infallible, so I'll stay with the Hornady cop.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#15 Post by shinzen » Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:29 am

Yeah. Slow and steady, check the load every few rounds until confidence builds, then continue to check it every 10. The LNL is a hell of a press, but you can make a lot of bad ammo quickly if you're not paying close attention to the details. I ran a single case through at a time for quite awhile on my first progressive.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#16 Post by Marlene » Fri Apr 27, 2018 11:05 am

I wanna clarify something up-thread that got a little muddy, both for rocky and others reading. OAL and pressure:

Generally in PISTOL cartridges, shorter OAL means higher pressure. Changes in bullet seating depth make proportionally much larger changes in initial volume than in bottleneck rifle cartridges. In pistol cartridges this is a much larger factor in pressure than the entry of the bullet in to the lands. Conversely in bottleneck rifle cartridges, seating depth has little influence on initial case volume, but the distance the bullet travels to the lands can have significant impact on pressure because of the mechanism eelj describes so succinctly. This mechanism has much more effect in bottleneck rifle cartridges because of the higher pressures involved and the progressive burn rate characteristics of smokeless powder. So, longer OAL leads to higher pressure.

It should be noted that most modern factory rifles have fairly long throats, meaning that it can be entirely impossible to get a bullet out far enough to get close to the lands. This intentional design mitigates unexpected high pressure situations due to long bullets. Long throats were employed by Roy Weatherby in his pioneering work making commercially successful high velocity cartridge/rifle products that avoided dangerous pressure surprises. It is common for custom rifles to use shorter throated chambers in order to put this element fully in control of an experienced handloader because there may be accuracy benefits to jamming certain kinds of bullets in to the lands.

That’s probably more than I needed to say on the subject.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#17 Post by spara » Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:50 pm

Marlene wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 11:05 am
That’s probably more than I needed to say on the subject.
Your input is always appreciated.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#18 Post by AndyH » Fri Apr 27, 2018 2:09 pm

Marlene wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 11:05 am
I wanna clarify something up-thread that got a little muddy, both for rocky and others reading. OAL and pressure:

Generally in PISTOL cartridges, shorter OAL means higher pressure. Changes in bullet seating depth make proportionally much larger changes in initial volume than in bottleneck rifle cartridges. In pistol cartridges this is a much larger factor in pressure than the entry of the bullet in to the lands. Conversely in bottleneck rifle cartridges, seating depth has little influence on initial case volume, but the distance the bullet travels to the lands can have significant impact on pressure because of the mechanism eelj describes so succinctly. This mechanism has much more effect in bottleneck rifle cartridges because of the higher pressures involved and the progressive burn rate characteristics of smokeless powder. So, longer OAL leads to higher pressure.

It should be noted that most modern factory rifles have fairly long throats, meaning that it can be entirely impossible to get a bullet out far enough to get close to the lands. This intentional design mitigates unexpected high pressure situations due to long bullets. Long throats were employed by Roy Weatherby in his pioneering work making commercially successful high velocity cartridge/rifle products that avoided dangerous pressure surprises. It is common for custom rifles to use shorter throated chambers in order to put this element fully in control of an experienced handloader because there may be accuracy benefits to jamming certain kinds of bullets in to the lands.

That’s probably more than I needed to say on the subject.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#19 Post by rockyriverleather » Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:47 pm

Thanks Marlene. That is the type of answer I expect from an LGC member. Finest kind as we used to say up North.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#20 Post by eelj » Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:41 am

I'm curious, do semi auto pistol mags have enough room to actually seat a bullet out to far? I have 5 rifles that I reload for and 2 have bottom feeder mags while 3 have top feed mag wells and floor plates. The magazines take up too much room and restrict OAL in a most irritating fashion.

The last time I reloaded for an auto pistol was decades ago and it seemed to me that with the 1911 I would get feed problems and 230 ball would be quite "confined" unless I seated deep enough.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#21 Post by rockyriverleather » Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:43 pm

Well, that's a good question. The Data loads are based on 1.20 OAL. I have yet to find a Factory load length below 1.25 OAL. So I'm guessing that any problems encountered with a cartridge that fits in the magazine have more to do with feed ramps, or bullet shape. If it fits, it shoots seems to be overall consensus, but I'm not sure beyond that.

eelj wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:41 am
I'm curious, do semi auto pistol mags have enough room to actually seat a bullet out to far? I have 5 rifles that I reload for and 2 have bottom feeder mags while 3 have top feed mag wells and floor plates. The magazines take up too much room and restrict OAL in a most irritating fashion.

The last time I reloaded for an auto pistol was decades ago and it seemed to me that with the 1911 I would get feed problems and 230 ball would be quite "confined" unless I seated deep enough.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#22 Post by Buck13 » Fri May 04, 2018 10:30 am

eelj wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:41 am
I'm curious, do semi auto pistol mags have enough room to actually seat a bullet out to far?
A lot of people talk about doing a "plunk test," so it must be a potential problem. Maybe it's more common with 9 mm or .40 SW in guns with a grip frame sized for .45, so the mags don't have to be so narrow as to limit OAL as closely?

In .45, HP's presumably have a broader ogive out by the tip, so a short chamber that was close with ball ammo would contact the bullet at the same OAL?

I'm just guessing here.
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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#23 Post by spara » Fri May 04, 2018 10:43 am

Buck13 wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 10:30 am
eelj wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:41 am
I'm curious, do semi auto pistol mags have enough room to actually seat a bullet out to far?
A lot of people talk about doing a "plunk test," so it must be a potential problem. Maybe it's more common with 9 mm or .40 SW in guns with a grip frame sized for .45, so the mags don't have to be so narrow as to limit OAL as closely?

In .45, HP's presumably have a broader ogive out by the tip, so a short chamber that was close with ball ammo would contact the bullet at the same OAL?

I'm just guessing here.
It also depends on your barrel, for example my Tanfoglio in .40 can't use the ammo that I loaded long for my STI. The rounds loaded long will fit in the Tanfoglio magazine and feed but it will not fit in the barrel.

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#24 Post by rockyriverleather » Fri May 04, 2018 12:24 pm

So, in continued reading, it seems OAL being longer than recommended comes down to your bullet and barrel. eelj's concern for a mag being able to take a cartridge too long, is possible, but likely improbable in handguns, unless you have some unusual barrel and rifling.
One test I came across was to make a dummy cartridge (no Powder, or primer), seat it in YOUR barrel, and tap it in with a small hammer. If it releases, and falls out of the barrel, it has not engaged the rifling, and should work fine, as long as it is not shorter than the powder recommendation OAL.
If you are looking for it to shoot in other barrels, presumably if you do not exceed Manufactured lengths, than you're GTG, because they mfg. fit to an average of known barrels. But don't trust me...lol

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Re: CFE Pistol Powder .45ACP: Couple questions

#25 Post by rockyriverleather » Fri May 04, 2018 12:51 pm

PS:
I did that hammer barrel test
I fired off the first full mag, and retrieved the cartridges...they look clean, and uniform.
So for this round..

once fired brass
Rainier 230 FMJ HP
6.3g CFE Pistol Powder
OAL - 1.215 (book reccomended 1.20)

The powder metered perfectly from case to case. Jackets remained where they belong. No chrono, but seemed equal to MFG. Cleaning was easy.
But I will look into IMR, just to be able to visually check easier.

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