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Discussion Starter #1
Hello:
Is the gun powder that we purchase to reload trap shells the same powder that is in top quality new trap shells? If not, why not?

If we don't have the same option to purchase the same powder as do Remington, Winchester and Federal, why not? To my way of thinking, if the answer is no, there is no way we could ever duplicate a factory shell and in reality how can a reload ever be as good a factory shell?
Steve Balistreri
Wauwatosa Wisconsin
 

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A reload can be just as good, better or worse than a factory shell. And by the way the powder is the same. Any body that thinks they make special runs of powder for the factory is in LaLa Land. HMB
 

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No, because you don't purchase powder multiple tons at a time. If you did, I'm sure they'd be more than happy to sell you the same mixture.

Powders are blended for manufacturers to fit their velocity, pressure, and volume specifications. Most of the time factories only have one hull, and one wad to play with, so they may need a more or less bulky powder to make everything fit right. If you are loading a 1100fps 1 1/8oz load, and a 1350fps 1 1/8oz load, and your hull and wad are the same, the powder volume has to be the same as well, but it will be a different blend for each shell.

Not only are you not able to purchase the same powder used in factory shells, if you were, you'd be trying to hit a moving target, because in all liklihood, the powder isn't even exactly the same from lot to lot.
 

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I have never understood the need to duplicate factory rounds. If you like a factory round so much then just shoot the factory round. If you want to reload ammo every bit as good as factory and most the time better then reload.
 

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I'm not bitin on this one...too many people out there in LALA land....
 

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I don't understand why you would need the "exact" same powder..

There are hundreds of powders on the market.. hundreds of wads. I tried a ton of loads when I first started shooting. I settled on two.. one for singles and doubles and one for handicap. I have shot both for 20 years without any issues and I have as much confidence in my reloads as I do the new shells I shoot.

I don't have the exact same car that Shack drives.. should I complain about that ??
 

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Wow a good unloading of sorts on senior smoke I see. All factory ammo except for Remington has there own owned powder manufacturer.

I once heard that titegroup is used in the new softer shooting nitros. which if that is the case I'm going to assume they are using that in there 2 3/4 dram as well as their 3 dram loads also. Would make sense to me.

my .05 cents

Brady Gies
 

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No, the powder in the green STS shells is not the same as is used in the Nitros. And yes, that is some form of Titegroup. Whether or not it's identical to canister grade Titegroup is open to question, and really makes no difference anyway. We buy what we can and develop our own favorite recipes, not having the same powder as the factories use is no big deal. Like many here, I prefer my reloads to most factory stuff…Nitro 27s being the exception.
 

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They could be different, now, but several yrs. ago I dismantled STS Light Handicap ( my favorite) shells and found what appeared to be Green Dot powder, but there was only 17 grains. I have used Green Dot for years and it takes 20 gr. of what we buy to duplicate the STS LH. It looks like the same stuff, but it can't be. I can't tell the difference in shooting my reloads and new STS LH.
 

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Gentlemen, the powders available to us as reloaders are what is called canister grade powders. Canister grade means that only those lots that fall within a certain window of consistency are sold to reloaders. Why, because we reloaders do not have the velocity and pressure test equipment to modify a load if it is outside those parameters, and we certainly cannot modify the hull.

Shotshell manufacturers buy powder in bulk. It is not the same from lot to lot, even though the powder manufacturer tries very hard to make it so. On another thread you read two shooters who opened an STS light target 2 3/4DE shell and weighed the powder. One called it 18.1, the other 18.7. There is nothing strange about this.

Canister grade powder is permitted to vary within a window of 25fps and 2500psi for IDENTICAL WEIGHED loadings. Just so you know it was not a typo, I'll type it again. 25fps and 2500psi. OEM powders fall outside of that tolerance, so the shotshell manufacturers tweak their loadings so as not to blow any of us up. That tweaking can take the form of shortening or lengthening the hull, adjusting the powder charge, or, in extreme circumstances, tweaking the priming mixture.

The Reduced Recoil Nitro 27s were first loaded with canister grade TiteGroup and subsequently with an OEM variant very similar to Titegroup.
 

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"That tweaking can take the form of shortening or lengthening the hull..."

Really? If so, it must not be by much because we'd notice the difference when reloading and I never have.

-Gary
 

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What zzt said...

On a recent tour of the Fiocchi facility in Ozark, MO they alter by changing the powder charge almost exclusively.

Right next to the loading area is the test lab where all the data is recorded, sorted, and used to 'tweak' the loads as needed.

As zzt says, we don't have this equipment so we get the canister grade powder (exception - Promo) - the large producers, buying the powder, more or less 'as is' when it comes out of the factory can pay much less in that production costs are WAY down relative to the need to standardize for specific loading data...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
ZZT:
Your response is interesting to me. Over the years, I have reloaded numerous shells with different powders, primers, and hulls. I believe that my personal reload that I used for numerous years was as good if not better than a new factory shell.

I do not have any expensive equipment to prove my statement, but I hit targets very well with my reloaded shells compared to factory shells. A few of my friends, purchase only new premium shells and have always said that people who reload shells are kidding themselves if they think they can match the performance of a new premium factory shell?

I really don't know who's correct, but I do believe that you have to have complete confidence in your own particular load. My load of choice was either Federal papers or Federal gold medal hulls with PB powder and the 12C1 wad for papers or 12 S4 wad for the gold medals, with Federal primers. It was one heck of a load.

But my friends have said even if I used Red dot years ago in the Federal paper hull, it was not the same powder even though it looked like red dot in a new Federal paper. All I can say, my reloads hit targets with absolute authority.

I felt shooters who had a pet reloaded shells years ago were at a mental disadvantage being forced to use new shells at the Grand in Ohio when new shells were mandatory.

I asked Vic Reinders one time why we had to use new shells at the Grand? He said the ATA depended on that money as it was a big money maker for them.
Steve
 

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I do not know for sure but was told many years ago by a Federal Rep that their powder is blended ... I do not reload so what ever it is, it is ... What skeetman says is close to what I was told by the Rep ... So there you have it folks ... Happy New Year ... WPT ... (YAC) ...

Skeetman said:
Powders are blended for manufacturers to fit their velocity, pressure, and volume specifications. Most of the time factories only have one hull, and one wad to play with, so they may need a more or less bulky powder to make everything fit right. If you are loading a 1100fps 1 1/8oz load, and a 1350fps 1 1/8oz load, and your hull and wad are the same, the powder volume has to be the same as well, but it will be a different blend for each shell.
 

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In 1977 I applied for a job at Federal in MN. I was given a tour of the plant and when I asked what powder they use in Federal Papers I was told it was Red Dot. The papers back then that I took apart had no red flakes. It was explained to me the Red flakes are only there as an identifier for the powder sold to the public. Federal buys in huge volume and no identifiers are needed or wanted. The powder charge varied a little depending on the Lot that was made for them to reach their specifications for speed and pressure. It sounded like a very logical explanation at the time. It may be different now with all the new technology and advances with shells and powder in the last 36 years.
 

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I agree with MX8, back in the '70s I reloaded Fed papers. I shot with a Fed. rep a lot and after opening a new Fed paper and weighing the powder and seeing no "Red Dots" and the weight was not what the loading manual stated as duplicating the factory load. I asked him about the factory powder and was told it was a Red Dot blended for Fed.
 
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