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Reloads and PSI

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by jbmi, Jun 8, 2009.

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  1. jbmi

    jbmi Well-Known Member

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    As I look through threads on reloading I always seem to see caution used when building up to around 10,000psi, but scanning my reloading manual I see numerous loads showing psi to 11,500 for 12ga. loads and even higher to over 12,000psi for the small gauges. I know recoil comes into play, but what's the concern for psi's over 10K if published data goes so much higher?
     
  2. KEYBEAR

    KEYBEAR Active Member

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    Alot of misconceptions about pressure . Alot of powders need 9,500 or more psi to burn well . Low pressure don,t mean less recoil . Green Dot powder will burn much cleaner over 9,500 psi . If you have powder in your barrel or hulls after shooting you need alittle more pressure to burn it .
     
  3. Shooting Coach

    Shooting Coach Well-Known Member

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    Personally, I prefer to load the 12 to at least 9000 psi, but do not want a load over 10,000 psi.

    When the factory loads their ammo to a certain maximum average pressure, they are using new hulls. When I pick up hulls at the range, I am using fired hulls, and do not have control over the condition of the firearm they were used in. Some shotguns have generous, if not oversized chambers.

    My shotguns are in excellent condition, but I seldom load hulls fired in my guns. I typically load Eurotrash hulls once, and toss them. If lucky, I occasionally have Remmy field hulls.

    Also, I have not found that pressures over 10,000 psi give superior performance over a carefully assembled load that generates pressure levels I prefer.

    Using slower powders in the 12, such as Solo 1000 and Solo 1250 or Unique suit my needs for standard and high speed Handicap loads.

    I have also researched Herco for 1250 foot Back Yard loads, but have not yet tried this powder. Feedback from those who use Herco (NOT Redco) would be appreciated.
     
  4. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    jbmi, I'm sure those loads listed at 11,000psi are safe, because there is a lot of headroom in the SAAMI limits. That being said, I will rarely use recipe that results in pressures over 10,000psi.

    I talked to both Alliant and Hodgdon ballisticians and they both tell me the same thing. Loads listed in their manuals can vary from shot to shot over a range of 25fps and 2500psi. So I'd rather be on the safe side and load for lower pressures than max.

    how much pressure you need for a clean burn depends on the powder you use, the wad, the diameter of your barrel, and the outside temperature. Most of the time it takes 8000psi for a good consistent burn. I shoot for between 8000psi and 10000psi. My favorite powder for 1oz loads is e3. Pressures range from approx 8000psi for 1150fps to 9700psi for 1250fps. All of these loads burn clean, even in the winter.

    By contrast, my 1oz American Select loads are no longer so clean. The 18gr load used to burn clean in the summer, until I had the barrels worked on. Now, at .740" bores, there is unburned powder. My baby 1 1/8oz load generates 9000psi and burns clean as a whistle.
     
  5. vegas blaster

    vegas blaster TS Member

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    hijacking for HERCO info please. Does anyone have any HERCO recipes for trap loads? thanx, Jeff K.
     
  6. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    Vegas

    Alliant has some listed, but it's not a powder for 1 oz oe light 1 1/8 oz. It's close to Unique and works well in heavier handicap loads.

    With respect to pressure, it's all about the stress you put on your firearm each time you pull the trigger. Fire 500 shells through your favorite duck gun each year and it should last for a very long time, even with heavy loads. Fire 15 - 20 THOUSAND high pressure loads through a trap gun each year, and it's easy to imagine some cumulative stress and fatigue becoming a problem at some point. Call it excess wear or a catastrophic failure, high pressure will eventually take it's toll. A hundred thousand max pressure loads can take it's toll on ANY firearm. It does not matter what the powder company lists, it's what you select for your loads. I try to keep it reasonable and under 10K. You still need some pressure for the powder to burn correctly, especially in colder weather. You just need to keep it reasonable. A failure can be caused by loads that were fired well BEFORE the failure occurred. It may not have been the shell that you fired when it broke. The gun failed because it reached that point. I always get a kick out of the reloaders that say "I Fired 500 of these with out a problem!". Try 50,000 and then let me know if it stayed together. Reloaders are the main reason I would shy away from a used gun. You don't always know what idiot loaded and fired shells in it.

    Now for the kicker. The pressures that are listed by the powder companies are developed under controlled conditions. Add a heavier crimp, a different primer, and 30 degrees more heat and you could be way over the limits. Add to that the normal variations in components and the reloading process and you can get the idea why I'd strongly recommend staying with a reasonable load to start. Stack up a few variables and you could be in trouble. The more headroom you have by staying under 10K, the better chance you have of staying under maximum limits.

    Just my "Not-So-Humble" opinion.
     
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