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LifeisgoodSteve

Can you feel the difference between powders when shooting?

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Hi All,

 

Going to start having fun with a SW 329pd and have both the V320 and V340 powders.  The V340 can go hotter, but I'll not need that for my training and competition loads.  As I'm relatively new to reloading, it made me wonder if you can feel a difference in the different powders when shooting?

 

I'm not really talking about smoke or how clean/dirty, but specifically the recoil or feeling of the shot.

 

My guess is that the difference between the V320 and V340 would be minimal, but curious if you guys have any experience with the difference in these and in general between the various powders out there in this regard?

 

Thanks,

 

Steve

 

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Posted (edited)

It's relative.  Same bullet loaded to the same velocity will feel different.  Which one you like depends on you.  The 340 load will have more actual recoil, but may feel softer because is is more of a push.  Generally speaking, faster powders hit your hand harder than slower powders.

 

Under a 200gr LSWC, load 5.1gr N320.  Then load some with 6.1gr N340 and see what differences you feel.

Edited by zzt

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Posted (edited)

Thanks. Yeah, I was definitely feeling the urge to do a side by side comparison. When working in my .357 loads I actually had very similar FPS loads for my with the same 158gr bullet using the 320 and 340. In that case I wanted a higher FPS to get into major with .38special brass which I why I went with the v340 

 

I must say that the loads with V340 were very pleasant to shoot, even at 170pf. That had some kick for sure but in a fun way that makes you smile a bit when you shoot it. 

 

In the range of powders out there, any that are known to generate lower perceived recoil, in same FPS, in any meaningful way?

Edited by LifeisgoodSteve

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1 hour ago, LifeisgoodSteve said:

 

 

In the tange of powders, any known to generate lower perceived recoil, in same FPS?

Usually, faster powders feel better   :) 

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I cannot. I bought n320 because of the feedback here. There was no difference from tight-group for me.

I can tell the difference with bullet weights though.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Welcome to the fun world of reloading!

 

Yes, loaded to produce the same bullet velocity there is a very noticeable increase in felt recoil with N340 over N320. It's not an end of the world difference, but it is absolutely there.

 

Slow powders produce a snappy recoil that rotates the gun in your hand more. Fast powders snaps (rotates) the gun less, which is where you get the comments that it's more of a shove back into the heel of your hand. From a physics perspective both likely produce the same force on your body. But the force that travels straight into your arms and stance is a lot less disruptive than the one that attempts to rotate the gun in your grip.

 

In the case of your revolver, if you're shooting for pleasure I'd absolutely go with the faster end of powders recommended in loading formula books. It produces a generally more pleasant round to shoot.

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Ok, thanks for the great info.  

 

On a slightly separate question, what's the risk if loading below the minimum recommended for the powder?

 

For example, if I'd like to stick to the magnum cases as that's what I'd use for the heavier loads on a backpacking trip, then for practice/training rounds in competition I'd like a much softer load.  The VV site has a very small range of difference between the low/high on the v320 and v340 powders of maybe 100-200fps.

 

However, the .44 specials are far far lower fps for the same bullet weight.  It seems that with the larger case it could handle lower pressures but the higher pressures which push the boundaries of a case would be where the risk comes in.  I'm clearly missing something basic, so am sorry for the simply question.

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I can feel the difference in powders when the weight and velocities are the same. That is the reason I use one for match ammo (Nitro 100) and use WST and Clays for practice and steel loads. On the Vit powders I have only used 320, but that was in the .40. It is not a good .45 powder.

 

Even powders with close burning rates act differently. 700X, Bullseye, and Titgroup are right next to each other on the chart, but have a different feel. 700 seems slower on slide speed, and Titegroup feels snappier. The chemical compound and the amount of gasses released more then likely cause this, but that is a subjective "feel" from me only.

 

As far as going lower on minimums, with the .44 I'd be really careful. Getting a stuck bullet in the barrel and firing the next round, that would end the range session. I use some .45 loads below minimum, but did call the powder manufacturer and ask the technical person if I was operating within guidelines. One never knows when subtle but dangerous pressure spikes occur and cause damage. 

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In slow fire range practice I can feel a difference in the recoil impulse; i.e. push, snappy etc. However, during competition I'm not aware of the recoil except as it relates to subsequent shots. Muzzle flip as opposed to shooting "flatter".  Competition is one of the few situations where I focus on outcome instead of process; just less stuff to clog my thought process. Range time / practice polishes procedure. Secondary factors such as shooting cleaner is a bonus. I mostly shoot 45 revo now because I'm old and slow and am dedicated to Clays and 230 gr FMJ.

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All very interesting about the powders.  As I've got a good bit of the V320 and V340 I'm going to work through those first and then can experiment with the others IF I've got the patience or interest at that point.  Likely I may just want to focus on training and shooting rather than fiddling, especially because at some point we'll exit this super wet rainy season and not have as much indoors time. :)

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8 hours ago, mont1120 said:

As far as going lower on minimums, with the .44 I'd be really careful. Getting a stuck bullet in the barrel and firing the next round, that would end the range session. I use some .45 loads below minimum, but did call the powder manufacturer and ask the technical person if I was operating within guidelines. One never knows when subtle but dangerous pressure spikes occur and cause damage. 

 

Yes, I have zero interest in pushing any limits at the risk of damage to self or gun.

 

So if there is the risk of the bullet not making it out of the barrel, then what changes in the Cowboy loads to avoid that same issue?

 

For example, here are two loads listed on their site for .44 mag with the same V340 powder.  The only difference I can see is the bullet type, but would the type make such a dramatic difference in min and max fps (300-400fps)?

 

I'm ignorant on the nuances of bullet types they list, but is there that much of a difference or is there something else going on I'm missing?  

 

Personally, I'd plan on using the Missouri Bullet Company Hi-Tek coated bullets, likely in 240gr.  They do have 240gr. recommended for "cowboy velocities" that are softer at Brinell 12 rather than the Brinell 18 they recommend for faster velocities.

 

Here are some numbers from VV site:

Standard .44 Mag

N340 w/240gr JTC-Sil, Hornady bullet = FPS  min 1175     max 1247

N340 w/250gr FPJ-Match, Sierra bullet =   FPS:  min 1119     max 1213

N340 w/300gr HP-XTP, Hornady bullet = FPS: min 997    max 1061

 

"Cowboy"

N340 w/267 LFN bullet  =  FPS: min735     max945

 

 

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15 hours ago, LifeisgoodSteve said:

 

Yes, I have zero interest in pushing any limits at the risk of damage to self or gun.

 

So if there is the risk of the bullet not making it out of the barrel, then what changes in the Cowboy loads to avoid that same issue?

 

For example, here are two loads listed on their site for .44 mag with the same V340 powder.  The only difference I can see is the bullet type, but would the type make such a dramatic difference in min and max fps (300-400fps)?

 

I'm ignorant on the nuances of bullet types they list, but is there that much of a difference or is there something else going on I'm missing?  

 

Personally, I'd plan on using the Missouri Bullet Company Hi-Tek coated bullets, likely in 240gr.  They do have 240gr. recommended for "cowboy velocities" that are softer at Brinell 12 rather than the Brinell 18 they recommend for faster velocities.

 

Here are some numbers from VV site:

Standard .44 Mag

N340 w/240gr JTC-Sil, Hornady bullet = FPS  min 1175     max 1247

N340 w/250gr FPJ-Match, Sierra bullet =   FPS:  min 1119     max 1213

N340 w/300gr HP-XTP, Hornady bullet = FPS: min 997    max 1061

 

"Cowboy"

N340 w/267 LFN bullet  =  FPS: min735     max945

 

 

Those two types of bullets are dramatically different, the first group being jacketed, and the second being lead. You can shoot lead bullets at a much slower velocity and not have any risk. They form to the barrel when fired much better then jacketed do. You do need to drive jacketed bullets faster.

 

From my experience, there are reasons powder companies dont want rounds going slower then they list, whether it be stuck bullets or spikes in pressure. If you want to go lower then listed, just ask them, they are very helpful. You could always use Trail Boss to really get light loads.

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Thanks for enlightening my ignorance, even a little.  The coated bullets I use are supposed to be treated like lead cast in terms of loading data, but I'll double check with them.

 

Thx

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