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I'm new to reloading, have all the equipment and 2 manuals (Speer and Nosler) but haven't started yet. My question is the weight of powder and the size of the bullet. For example in the nosler manual as a starting load, they suggest 8.6 grains of AA#5 powder when loading their 185 gr. sporting handgun JHP for 45 acp. Is it safe to use that same amount of AA#5 and another brand of 185 grain FMJ bullet?
 

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The general answer is maybe. What you want to do is cross reference the powder you want to use in several sources with 185 gr bullets if you can't find the exact one you're looking for. Pick a low starting load that appears to agree with several sources and work up as high as you feel comfortable with. I almost never load a book max load finding what I need somewhere in the middle of the range. The exception being .44 special which is so underloaded its pathetic, therefore I just use max loads in my S&W's. If you start getting into the territory where most of the books top out at (and you'll find they're pretty similar) then stop. A little common sense goes a long way!

later,
AJ
 

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paul:

In my opinion, you are probably safest when you use the load for a particular bullet from the specific bullet's manufacturer. That is Nosler manual for Nosler bullets, Speer manual for Speer bullets.

You are probably safe, using the low end load but I would be very cautious approaching a maximum load from another manual.
 

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If the bullets are similar size and make (say both 185 gr jacketed hollow points) then using one manual's data for another bullet for starting loads is an acceptable practice. Powder companys for example generalize and there data is the easiest to migrate from one bullet to another.

You'll notice however that the shape of a hollow point can vary in length, ogive, hollow point cavity and other dinmensions so the performance listed in one manual for that specific bullet can be different than your results if you use a different bullet than what's listed. I usually load Hornady bulets so I use there data, but I also load using powders that their book dosn't list so I use general data from powder manufacturers as a starting place.

The key is to work up a safe load safely.
 

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watch out for length differences

One thing to be careful of is how long the your bullet is compared to the book's bullet. Two loads with the same OAL can have very different internal volumes -- even with the same weight, bullets can differ considerably in length, so that your 185gr JHP seated to the same OAL as the book's JHP may give 10% less internal volume, and unpleasantly surprising pressures.

If you know how long the book's bullet is, then you can adjust your OAL to compensate for your bullet (assuming it will feed and chamber ok).

With revolver loads this isn't as big of a deal, since they tend to have such huge cases to begin with, so bullet length differences (at the same weight) don't tend to be quite so significant.
 

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There is also the option of contacting the powder companies via email with any load of their powder you concerned with. Hodgdon and Alliant have been a less then 24 hour response to any email I have sent them on bullets and powder.


Stacey
 

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There are two avenues one could to get the correct information; Call the bullet/powder manufacture; Check out the Lyman Reloading Manual

TC
 
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