View Full Version : 45 Acp Loads

01-05-2008, 07:01 AM
I use a lee 45 230 grain mold for my bullets ,with ww's the bullets run around 224to 228 grain ,i would like to know what loads you guy's use ,primers ,powder ,right now my local store only has red dot and winchester primers ,so my loads are limited ,if i want anything other than that i have to order it ,so to get right down to it ,what would be a good all around powder ?

01-05-2008, 07:03 AM
Lee 230 gr. TC lubed with Lyman Moly over 4.5 gr. Bullseye w/Win Lrg Pistol primer. Works for me!

01-05-2008, 07:11 AM
Bullseye and unique are two powders i seem to see used alot,anyone use solo 1000?, my local shop has a couple cans of it and might try it .

01-05-2008, 08:29 AM
I don't memorize these powders....From the top of my head i would look into using.
Unique,Titegroup, WSF,W231, IMR SR 4756,red dot, Green dot,Bullseye,#5,#7, IMR 700X,Clays, and more..... You look them up and try different burning rates/recipes..For example; Why bother having two Fast powders use the most availible/less expensive choice. You can't go wrong starting with Unique for a very versitle pistol/rifle everything/ all caliber powder that bulky in most cases. I wouldn't be without Unique. In fact buy, 8 lbs if you can.

01-05-2008, 08:41 AM
Bullseye is a great all around powder that will last your for years. I have a 4 pound container and have used only half in the past year. I don't have a load for 230 gr but my load of choice for a 200 gr, LSWC is 4.0 gr of bullseye. Good luck.

01-05-2008, 08:45 AM
Thanks for the info guy's, the store doesnt carry much powder ,so what powder i do buy must last me awhile and also be multi use .

01-05-2008, 08:56 AM
230gr LRN+4.0gr Bullseye+cci LP+5" 1911=many many good times for me!!

01-05-2008, 10:14 AM
3.5 - 3.6 grains of Bullseye with WLP primers under a 230 grain LRN is what I use for IDPA. Not as hot as factory loads, but enough to make the power factor for IDPA.

01-05-2008, 10:47 AM
Thanks for the info guy's, the store doesnt carry much powder ,so what powder i do buy must last me awhile and also be multi use .

Then you are talking Bullseye or Unique. I'd go with the Bullseye and my favorite load is 4.2 grains under the Lee 452-228-1R. I shoot this load in USPSA and it makes major power factor from a 4 inch 625.

01-05-2008, 11:09 AM
I have been loading the 45 ACP round for 47 years and the vast majority of the rounds have used either Bullseye or Unique. If I had to pick just one, I would go with Bullseye.

01-05-2008, 12:06 PM
Look here:


That's about the only data for Red Dot I could find for the .45 ACP; Alliant only lists data for Power Pistol - kinda odd, as Bullseye, Unique, and Blue Dot all have applications in this round. I would suggest that you're going to have to bite the bullet and order some powder online. You'll have to pay the HAZMAT fee, but you'll get what you want.

Perhaps you need to find another gun store or a gun club in your area that sells powder. Maybe you can do a group buy with some other reloaders. Nothing wrong with Winchester primers, so just use those.

01-05-2008, 12:33 PM
If you going with red dot I use it alot I like to run a 230L at 4.0 of red dot c.o.a.l. is 1.250. Great load in my commander but works well in all my 45's. I like the red dot in my 9-40 becouse its bulky enough there is no way a double charge. But I cannot fault titegroup, bullseye, NO5, or american select. I would agree that buying in bulk is good but if your just starting out why not try a couple 1lb to see what you like. I have found some powders react diff. with diff lubes{ more or less noticable smoke} Im sure your going tio enjoy yourself one way or another soon you be like the rest of us and your conversations will start like this" Hi my name is BOB and Im a reloader"

Bob Jones
01-05-2008, 02:29 PM
The only practice load I shoot anymore is the Lee 230 with 4.0 grains of straight Clays. Very clean and accurate, soft shooting.

Solo 1000 is very popular with some folks. Check out the reloading forums at http://www.brianenos.com for a ton of good information.

01-05-2008, 04:48 PM
Made a run to the shop and luck was with me today 1lb can of bullseye for 16 bucks ,will give it a try.

Le Loup Solitaire
01-05-2008, 05:06 PM
I have been using 4.0-4.1 grains of RD with the 225-230 grain round nose versions of the service boolit, one by RCBS and the other by H&G. Casting metal is WW and Sizing them to .451 with NRA 50-50.Shooting them in a S&W model 1917 S&W M25 and a Govt.1911A1. Moderate recoil, burns clean and is accurate at 25 yards.

01-05-2008, 09:04 PM
Lots of Bullseye fans here I see. I used to use it and it is still the (very slight) accuracy leader for my guns but it is dirty as @#*&. I have used quite a bit of Green Dot, and Win 231 in the .45ACP and massive quantities of Clays. My favorite to date is Clays for a plinking type load with 231 as a close second. Green Dot I use in heavier loads making 900-950fps with a 230gr j-word bullet.

If you load other calibers 231 is a good choice because it does a great job in a wide range of cartridges and being a ball powder it meters exceptionally well.

01-05-2008, 10:46 PM

Winchester 231 is a pretty standard powder for 45 acp. It's a common powder and it works well with a range of weights.

As long as you stay below 5.5 grains you should be safe with your bullets. You can go down to 4 grains, but you may not cycle the slide on a standard 1911.


01-06-2008, 12:24 AM
The only burn rate chart I have handy is in a VihtaVuori book. It's fairly comprehensive, but I've some with more powders listed.

Blue Dot is #39 on this list. That's the slowest powder that I've used in the .45ACP. Anything faster than that should theoreticly be suitable, although some are obviously more suitable than others.

Of the powders listed on the V V chart, I have used 27 of them to load .45ACP. (and several others that aren't listed on this chart) Some of them (Solo 1000, Royal Scot, Pearl Scot) I got free off a prize table at a USPSA match. Some of them (AA #2, AA #5, Green Dot, WST, WSL) I loaded just to use up stocks of powder I no longer cared to keep on hand. Others I used because they were the current "magic" powder at the time, and still others...just 'cause I like to experiment.

Most of them would put a H&G68 into 2in. at 25 yds. which is plenty accurate for what I want.

My point is, almost any fast burning powder will work reasonably well in the .45 so if your local imporium stocks only Red Dot, then don't feel like you're being handicapped by the lack of choices, RD works just fine.

My "Powder du jour" is HP38...not because it works better than any other...because I can get it relatively cheap and Hodgden has published data for it in almost every handgun caliber you can imagine.

If Red Dot and WLP primers are all you can get...load 'em up and enjoy the shootin'.


01-06-2008, 01:13 AM
At one time Red Dot was my "go to" fast-burning powder, because I loaded both shotgun shells and pistol rounds with it. It was very economical too. I quit doing shotshells for awhile, so switched over to W231, but here are the loads for Red Dot, since that's what your store stocks:

230gr Lead (Target load) - Min. OAL: 1.150" (you can go to 1.260" without jamming in magazines). RED DOT: 4.0grs = 810fps (12,800psi ~ very mild load).
It lists Fed. 150 primer, but I've always used Winchesters (they're cheap and plentiful here). This load is straight of the 1990 Hercules Powder Reloader's Guide, and you can see quite a few guys posting above shoot it with great success.

01-06-2008, 03:56 PM
Dude, you're not limited at all with Red Dot! That's one of the most versatile powders around for non-magnum pistol loads, shotgun and light rifle loads. Alliant does list data for it in the .45 on their site, BTW. It's in Lee's, Lyman's, Speer's and Hornady's loading manuals, all that I have on hand. And Alliant states that Red Dot burns 94% as fast as Bullseye, suggesting that Bullseye starting data by weight would be a reasonable starting point where that data is available but Red Dot data isn't.

If available, check out Alliant Promo. Loads to the same data by powder weight as Red Dot. Cheaper. Alliant E3 also loads to the same data by weight, it's claimed advantage being cleaner burning.

01-06-2008, 10:50 PM
Actually, Red Dot is my preference for .45 ACP in light to standard loads.

Gets more velocity per charge weight than most powders, including those fashionable as the latest "in" powders for the pistol crowd or most if not all of the other "old favorites" - so it's cost effective. Capable of duplicating standard velocities in .45 ACP - several of the latest popular powders cannot. 4.8-4.9 grains gets around 850 fps from a five inch Colt, and 830 fps from my 4 inch Ruger, using the Lee 230-2R. You may drop the charge a few tenths to duplicate factory FMJ ball velocities from popular priced factory ammo.

Despite what Alliant says, 4.0 grains Red Dot will not get 810 fps with either lead or FMJ 230's. Not to worry, though, as this charge will function the gun every time and produces light recoil. Five grains is maximum with the 230 FMJ and will duplicate or exceed factory velocities. Around 1.265" is the correct length to duplicate factory ball.

A double charge will nearly overflow the case using any practical charge of Red Dot, making loading mistakes obvious and its use on progressive presses convenient as a visual check before bullet seating is easily done. Its bulk means it is less position sensitive than most.

Burns decently clean.

Fairly low basic cost. Available everywhere.

Rafe Covington
01-12-2008, 07:10 PM
I use Accurate Arms #7, works good for me with 200 gr lead SWC. , just my 2 cents worth.:drinks:

01-12-2008, 07:31 PM
my favorite is 4.3 of clays over a 200 gr LSWC. works good for me makes major for IPSC, and is very clean. -chris