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Coated 200 gr SWC at (barely) major PF - Better powder than WST? E3? Auto Pistol? N310?


johnmyster
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I'm pretty happy with WST for my 45 major loads, 165 pf.  5" 1911 is the application.  Based on availability of small pistol primers, likely to be shooting the 45 (at major) instead of the 9mm (minor) for some time to come.  I have a good amount of WST on hand, but it's time to order more...just in case powder becomes hard to find...so now is a good time to launch a new workup if it's needed. 

 

More velocity variation across the chrono than I'd ideally want, but runs the gun reliably.  Perhaps that's the dillon powder mechanism, or perhaps that's low case fill.  My workups land me from 4.3 to 4.5 grains.  And cleaner is always better.

 

I'm having a hard time finding direct comparisons.  Can anyone comment directly on my application?  E3 would give more case fill.  N310 and Shooters World Auto Pistol would be about the same.

 

Do I just have the itch to mess with something that already works, or is there a meaningful improvement on the table with any of those options?  If I do switch, my WST stash isn't a loss, as I'm happy with it in 9mm...for the time being.

Edited by johnmyster
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N310 is horribly temperature sensitive, and not at all consistent unless you go past the max load VV has listed.  Also, you cannot make major with the max listed load.  Clays is spikey near the top end.  I would use it for minor, but not for major.  WST IS a superb powder, but you have to be careful if you are sticking close to 165 PF.  It is most energetic at 60-70 degrees, and falls off at cooler or warmer temps.  e3 is a superb powder for 45.  It has zero temp sensitivity and is super consistent.  I use it under a 200 for my bullseye loads.  Single digit SDs.  You can easily make major with it.  Another powder I use for 45 major is Solo 1000.  Also single digit SDs.

 

e3 is a super versatile powder.  I use it for minor 9mm, minor and major 40sw and 45.  I also use it for sub-minor 9mm for steel challenge in my PCC

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Thanks for the input.  Was unaware of temp sensitivity for n310.  Clays wasn't something I was considering.  Solo 1000 scared me for availability.  Clean shot and Auto Pistol published data seemed pretty sketchy, especially for 9mm, although I know others are using it.

 

I've gone ahead and ordered some E3.  I've noticed that popular shotgun powders used by trap/skeet shooters tend to stay available, perhaps due to market volume.  It'll be good to have another versatile powder under the bench.

 

I'll do development work this fall and perhaps share another data point in related threads.  Seems like 40 is a great application for e3, but not a caliber I'm shooting at this time.

 

 

Edited by johnmyster
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  • 1 month later...

I used to use N320 until I discovered Clays. Tried TG but it looked like my gun would sneak out of my holster and roll in the dirt. Filthy stuff. Then Clays went unavailable so I tried N310 and finally Vectan Ba10. Ba10 was perfect, clean and single SD consistent.

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used to hear about TG being dirty, It was a little more dirty than WST, but nothingg major. In 9 and 40, Just loaded up 200 gr 45 ACP practice ammo with it as I am trying to use my supply up.  at the lower pressure 45 acp, after 100 rounds my gun looked like I was shooting pyrodex

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Use Clays data for e3.  One of the things that is really hard to do with powders like WST and N310 in a 45 case is get SDs down to single digits.  They are dense you use so little of them.  I got there once with WST at major.  I got there once with N310 at over manual max load.  Most of the time the SDs were mid to high teens.

 

E3 was developed for the military, to stringent requirements, for us in auto loading drum fed shotguns.  When that weapon development was cancelled Alliant marketed e3 to consumers.  It is the most consistent shotgun powder I've every used.  I've tried them all.  I've talked about the temp sensitivity and other things above.  The one thing I was to stress is it is really, really hard to get higher than single digit SDs with e3.  My bullseye load is 4.97 with CCI 300 and 5.36 with WLP.  

 

17 hours ago, Kilrb said:

I am going to try Clays everyone I know that shoots it likes it

 

Just try a little.  Canadian Clays IS different than the original Australian Clays.  I don't use it anymore, because I like e3 better.  However, a lot of the bullseye shooters at my club tell me to old stuff was a lot better.  I put a lot of stock into what they said, because they Ransom Rest their loads at 50 yards.  They do that week after week testing powders and bullets.  When the most fanatic (and among the very best shooters) of them decides he likes the load, he orders 40,000 heads from the same lot, 24 lb., of powder from the same lot and a boatload of primers (have forgotten how many).  You couldn't give him new Clays for free.

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