View Full Version : My first experience w/ high pressure milsurp powder loads
09-09-2008, 01:57 PM
Guys, I am a bit surprised by my first results in loading rifle cartridges w/ WC844 and WC852f. It appears that the velocity I got was higher than I expected, as measured by chrono. No visible pressure signs (no cratered or pierced primers, no indications of sticky extraction, etc.)
Winchester LR primer, Hornady 170gr FP bullets, Marlin 336
34.0 of WC852f ==> 2177fps Avg, 7.5 SD
31.6 of WC844 ==> 2220fps Avg, 17.5 SD
I selected the charge weights based on H380 data for the WC852f, and H335 for the WC844. Predicted velocity was 100 or so lower. Am I too hot? Accuracy was nothing to brag on, but I may have been having a bad day.
On a reassuring note, I also had the .357 carbine out, shooting both H110 and WC820. It looks like the WC820 loads like AA #9.
CCI SP Mag primer, Hornady 158gr XTP, Marlin 1894C
14.0 of WC820 ==> 1634fps Avg, 17.0 SD
15.0 of WC820 ==> 1758fps Avg, 19.2 SD
No pressure signs. I think I'm gonna warm these up, and make sure they don't go in my S&W Model 60.
09-10-2008, 06:00 PM
I'd use WW 760 data for the WC852. It's closer than the H380 data.
09-13-2008, 03:47 PM
100 fps can just be due to your particular rifle having a slightly tighter chamber than the test rifle. If there are no pressure signs I'd not worry much.
09-15-2008, 07:46 AM
I use 32.0 grains of WC-844 with 170 grain Sierra J-words, and get about 2175 FPS in a 20" Win 94 barrel. That's about as hard as I want to run the load, but I don't think it's abusive--just a full-potential load.
I share your view that WC-820 (my lot) is very close to AA-9 performance in 30 Carbine--357, 41, and 44 Magnum.
09-17-2008, 12:47 PM
The original specs for WC852 were for identical powder charge weight and velocity with IMR 4895 in .30 M2 Ball loads. The lots that act like WW 760 and slower powders are variant lots that didn't meet specs. Be careful.
My batch of 852 is SLOW- around 4831 speed. Def. slower than H414, which it was marketed as.
11-05-2008, 07:55 AM
I believe the F in the WC852f was a designation to indicate it was faster than the standard wc852 lots. I'd be careful using data for anything slower than H380 until I established exactly where that lot fell in burning rate. WC852 should match IMR 4895 but lots were produced that are dramatically different on both the fast and slow side of the spectrum.
11-05-2008, 02:56 PM
no need to fear 3030 loads of that level. The 3030 has been underloaded from its true potential for years.
11-05-2008, 07:01 PM
Years ago I was talking to Jeff Bartlett on the phone and told me there were three distinctly different lots of WC-852 out there. At that time Cast Boolits just listed WC-852 and I sent them information and they updated the WC-852F listing and never posted the information for the third Lot and I have long since forgotten what he told me. He was a load of information and mentioned that he could NOT believe the vastly different burning rates for powder that the government would accept. It seems he summed it up by saying that if one has a complete ballistics lab one can make a lot of things "work" for the task at hand.
How do the numbers for the WC-844 and AA 2230 jive?
Years ago I hot my WC-820 side by side with some H110 and they were essentially the same. Not so the newer Lots and I have less than 6 pounds til I'm dry. I will fix that tomorrow!
11-06-2008, 07:52 PM
I thought the "f" stood for flash inhibitor. ????
11-07-2008, 05:45 PM
NO, it doesn't stand for "flash inhibitor!" It's for "Fast." It's not part of the original powder's terminology, just a milsurp vendor's attempt to keep us from blowing ourselves up with the different out-of-spec versions of WC852 that have been put on the market.
11-12-2008, 11:15 PM
............I'd guess it was about 1993 when I bought some WC852 from Bartlett. I used his "Use Like" data. Luckily to start I started 10% below a load for a 150gr slug and substituted a 125gr Speer. After a bit I felt I had a good start point for the 150gr Sierra's I was using for deer hunting in my M77 Ruger 30-'06. As I began increasing the loads the velocity DID go up, but pressure signs began appearsing long before reaching velocities the "Use Like" powder would have delivered.
Like TCLouis, I too phoned Jeff and proceeded to lay out the situation. He seemed surprised to hear of it. He asked if I had a fax, and ended up faxing me 5 sheets of paper which were copies of the Olin/Badger plant in Baraboo, WI test results and the Army acceptance info. It was very interesting to read. It listed all the powder ingredients, their percentages, residual ash and it's component parts after closed bomb tests, the type and serial number of the test rifles, and on and on and ON!
The first lot I got from Jeff was Lot#47287. If you go to Castpics and look at the surplus powder load data you'll find for a few cartridges (like 30-'06) published by me with lot#47287, and what's shown as max IS max, or was for me :-). However MUCH more data from me is listed using lot# 47288, as this was the slower WC852 Jeff also ended up getting, as he had both for some time.
I wish now that I had bought ALL the WC852 of the slow lot that I could have seen clear to get while it was cheap and available. It is a very benign powder with excellent manners and no surprises. It builds pressure in rounds like the 30-'06 at 35 - 50 fps per grain very steadily without spikes or whoopties until you run out of room, or you begin to see pressure.
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