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Lee press/ powder question


jddisabledvet
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I am just looking into reloading. I started shooting USPSA earlier this year and with ammo shortage I need to try reloading. Although finding primers is next to impossible. I am looking mainly at the Lee Pro 4000 kit for 9mm. I know the press can be a little hard to get set up right so thats not what I need to know. I'm shooting a Canik TP9SFX with Holosun, upgraded trigger and used to Federal Syntech 150gn. I've been told the most comparable bullet is the Blue Bullet 147gn. I just do not know what powder I should use to get the result I get from the Federal Syntech bullet. 

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Any coated 147gr bullet should work. Blues are well liked here but they're not the only supplier and I've not noticed any difference between brands I've tried (Blue, Acme, BBI, and Bayou).

Being new to reloading I think your first priority should be a safe load. While I have noticed differences in recoil impulse between different powders in slow fire, that doesn't translate to an improvement in my performance on a stage. You might be placing an exaggerated importance on a specific load and what it can do for you.

Your first pound of powder should be something low density like Universal, Unique, Red Dot/Promo, Win 231, or 700x. Those will also produce nice soft shooting loads and fill the case enough you'll be less likely to double charge and blow up your gun.

 

Read this for perspective:

 

Edited by belus
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On 9/20/2020 at 12:31 PM, jddisabledvet said:

I just do not know what powder I should use to get the result I get from the Federal Syntech bullet.

Word on the street is that Federals running Sport Pistol in those rounds. This is just rumor, but regardless Sport Pistol or a similarly fast burning powder is what you want if you liked the 150 syntech. I've run 147 Blue Bullet FP over Sport Pistol and they're super soft shooting rounds, frankly a little bit too soft for me but everyones different in that regard.

 

There are plenty of powders that will give you a similar result but none of them will help you without primers. And be careful with this class of powders: these faster burning powders tend to be more dense so it's quite possible to double or maybe even triple charge a round. This happens less often with progressive presses but the risk is still there.

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17 hours ago, belus said:

Any coated 147gr bullet should work. Blues are well liked here but they're not the only supplier and I've not noticed any difference between brands I've tried (Blue, Acme, BBI, and Bayou).

Being new to reloading I think your first priority should be a safe load. While I have noticed differences in recoil impulse between different powders in slow fire, that doesn't translate to an improvement in my performance on a stage. You might be placing an exaggerated importance on a specific load and what it can do for you.

Your first pound of powder should be something low density like Universal, Unique, Red Dot/Promo, Win 231, or 700x. Those will also produce nice soft shooting loads and fill the case enough you'll be less likely to double charge and blow up your gun.

 

Read this for perspective:

 

I’m the original poster of the event you see above. I was also new to reloading and also looking for something to “mimic” Fed Syntech 150gn. I also use a Lee 4000 and have nothing but good things to say about it. To me, it was easy to setup and easy to use. My two biggest mistakes- Not letting the press do its job without interfering with the process and using a powder (Titegroup) that is really dense. It’s a great powder, but as a beginner it’s easy to miss a double-charge. Of course if you just let the press do its thing you won’t have any problems. I did not do that. Trust the press. There is NO WAY to double-charge a case if you let the press run uninterrupted, as designed. All the pulling off, weighing charge, placing back, etc. is what let to me blowing my gun up.

 

I still like Titegroup a lot but for the moment have switched to Sport Pistol and I’ve got to say it’s fantastic. Shot a few thousand rounds under Blues, SNS and Precision 147gn FP and it is impossible for me to tell the difference between it and the 150gn Syntech. Saving a bunch of money too. And my Lee Pro 4000 has run flawlessly with no issues whatsoever. The Auto Drum powder measure is on point and very accurate and consistent. My dies, once set, I have not had to adjust. Feel free to PM me with any questions. The folks on this forum and their knowledge and experience are invaluable.

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19 minutes ago, Solsand said:

I’m the original poster of the event you see above. I was also new to reloading and also looking for something to “mimic” Fed Syntech 150gn. I also use a Lee 4000 and have nothing but good things to say about it.


I really appreciate your candid discussion in that thread and I've been directing a lot of new reloaders to it as a warning. Without your honest and regular engagement we wouldn't have such a timely and well documented example to point them towards.

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47 minutes ago, belus said:


I really appreciate your candid discussion in that thread and I've been directing a lot of new reloaders to it as a warning. Without your honest and regular engagement we wouldn't have such a timely and well documented example to point them towards.

I'm glad some good has come of it. I have to say the folks on this forum were incredibly supportive and very helpful, and the lessons I've learned will hopefully save someone else from making a similar mistake. It ain't no fun to have gun go KABOOM in your hands, and I was REALLY LUCKY! Hell, bought a new TXG grip module and it's been good as new....

 

Thanks for the kind words. 

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I have the same set-up you're looking at: the Lee ABLP (also known as the Pro 4000).  I've had excellent results with mine, with the sole exception of priming.  I de-prime on a Lee APP processing press (cheap, and really fast!!!), then clean my cases so that I don't put dirt into my press and especially the dies.  Then I prime by hand using one of the priming tools on the market, which one is up to you.  This does two things, it lets me inspect the cases for splits, inner shoulders, etc., and also look for crimped primer pockets since I used range brass almost exclusively.  Lastly, if you're using the Lee Auto Disc (which I highly recommend), set it up properly with the "chain" return and you will virtually eliminate any possibility of double charges, as the disc won't reset until the ram is almost at the bottom of it's travel; you won't be able to make another pass to charge without the shell plate advancing, moving an empty case into position to receive powder.  Good luck, and feel free to ask all the questions you want.  There's a Facebook page for the Auto Breech Lock Pro (ABLP) that also has lots of good info about this press and how to get the most out of it.

 

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