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Thread: all around 45acp load

  1. #1
    Boolit Man docmagnum357's Avatar
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    Sep 2010
    western nc

    all around 45acp load

    I have been getting more and more crotchety as time goes by. I used to have a closet full of rifles, now I have one,well, one and a half. An AR 15 and a 22 upper. Same way with handguns. I have a good 1911 and a 625, and i have a Ciener kit for the 1911. One shotgun, and a slug barrel. I load slugs, buckshot, And all my pistol ammo.

    Anyhow, I am so crotchety I am looking for ONE load for the 625 and the 1911. I like big metplat boolits and am convinced they will kill, in actual use, as well or better than hollow points. I can't tell you how much small game and varmints I have taken with a 1911 and a #68 H&G clone. I recently got a 230 grain Lee mold. My question is this; if you were going to go to one load for target, self defense, hunting game up to white tail, what would you choose?

    I am not interested in hot rod loads. Just normal pressure, nothing special , shoot a box every day loads that will reliably take game up to deer and still be very accurate. I have taken one deer with a 1911, A Lee 230 TC took her from over 300 feet with a high shoulder shot. About 125-150 lbs. deer. Bullet did not exit on a broadside shot. Would a 200 grain SWC have exited? My load was 3.9 Clay Dot. I could go a little hotter, but prefer not to. Any other wide metplat boolits anyone could suggest? I wonder if anyone has used the #68 on deer at less than 1000fps? Looking for excellent accuracy and complete penetration of small deer at 100 yards. I was using a 629, but found myself using "hot" 44 specials more and more. 240 keith at 1000- 1100fps, or a 310 grain Lee flat nose at 900- 1000fps. Just didn't seem to need more, and i hunted with those loads on purpose. Seems like I ought to be able to find a "sweet spot" with a 1911 that will do it all.
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  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master Char-Gar's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
    Deep South Texas
    Take your #68 and run it at full speed (850 - 875 fps) and you have your do all load. Can you find loads that "might" be a smidge better for some purpose? Maybe! Will you ever notice the difference? Not likely!
    Disclaimer: The above is not holy writ. It is just my opinion based on my experience and knowledge. Your mileage may vary.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    jcren's Avatar
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    Nov 2014
    South, Central Ok
    I have good luck with the Lee 200 rf in handgun and carbine. 4.6 red dot for general purpose and 9 of hs-6 for full house. Have killed 3 hogs with the 4.6 load out of a hi-point carbine (980 fps) and many smaller yard vermin with the 1911. Actually haven't shot anything bigger than a dillo with the hotter load.
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  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master

    richhodg66's Avatar
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    Nov 2009
    Seems like something that duplicates GI ball is what you want. I bet that 230 grain TC and five grains of Bullseye would do it for you.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master scattershot's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Denver, CO
    I don’t hunt with it, but my favorite load is a 200 SWC over 4.0 Red Dot, for a shade over 800 fps.
    "Experience is a series of non-fatal mistakes"

    Disarming is a mistake free people only get to make once...

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    May 2013
    over the hill, out in the woods and far away
    Agree with CharGar on a full charge load with your H&G68. A flatnosed Cowboy bullet like the Saeco #954 or RCBS 45-230CM will also do well for you. My charge establishment firings with Alliant Bullseye:

    .45 ACP Data_____________________Velocity
    Bullet___Type_Weight_LDRotor#_Powder_Grains__Weble y4"____Ruger4-5/8"___M1911A1__1917S&W5-1/2"
    H&G68___SWC_200___7_______Bullseye__4______742/12/37____not fired______819/7/20__not fired
    ____________________8_______Bullseye__4.5____ not fired______862/21/54____831/15/37_789/18/44
    ____________________9_______Bullseye__5______not fired______922/19/42____916/6/17__904/10/29
    ___________________10______Bullseye__5.5____not fired______951/16/37_____not fired___ not fired

    Saeco#954___LFN_230__7______Bullseye___4_____693/10/29_____not fired______not fired___not fired
    _____________________8______Bullseye___4.5____not fired______not fired______817/16/42__803/10/27
    _____________________9______Bullseye___5______not fired______872/13/38____830/15/44__814/23/56
    __________________10______Bullseye___5.5___not fired____980/11/30___957/10/29___953/12/30
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  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master

    Larry Gibson's Avatar
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    Jul 2005
    Lake Havasu City, Arizona

    I, long ago settled on 5 gr Bullseye under 190 - 205 gr cast bullets in the 45 ACP as my "all around" load. that load runs 885 - 915 fps, depending on which bullet, out of my Colt M1911 and P-14 with 5" barrels. Besides being excellent for practice and plinking it has proven very effective on game up through deer. I have put down a several domestic animals (goats, sheep and a large cow) with it along with a couple injured elk. It is not a quick killer unless the CNS is hit. I always try to shoot a a second or third shot if I can. The deer I shot in the heart/lung area traveled a bit (30 - 50 yards+) before dying, even with 2 - 3 well placed hits. I used the Lee 190 SWC, the H&G 68 and the Lee 200 RF. Never say much difference between them in terminal effect. Penetration was not a problem even though I aim to put the bullet through the heart regardless of the angle.

    Out of my revolvers the 200 gr #68 runs 880 fps out of the Uberti SA with 4 3/4" barrel and 890 fps out of the S&W M1917/25 (1917 with a 6.5" M25 barrel).

    The Lee 200 gr RF feeds excellently through my M1911s with standard Colt feed ramp. However with the steeper ramped barrel of the P-14 the RF bullet is not reliable. The Lee 190 and copy of the #68 along with all commercial #68s feed slicker than snot through all my M1911 type pistols.

    This 5 gr BE load is also extremely accurate in my 10" contender Barrel and in the 16 1/2" Rhineland 45 ACP conversion on a M98 Mauser. Additionally I have shot this load through numerous sub guns with excellent performance also.
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Hunting with a 45 acp in a 1911 at 100 yds and wanting better penetration is pretty non-typical for the gun.

    To retain velocity and maximize penetration, you probably want to be on the heavy end.

    You have used the Lee 230 TC (BC of 0.146). A 200 SWC (BC of 0.127 for Lee version) would have lost more velocity prior to impact and would have less terminal impact and/or penetration at 100 yards.

    A wider meplat RNFP in 230 would probably have a similar or less impact velocity, similar or slightly better "smack" but likely to have less penetration.

    Your objective for "complete penetration" and your experience with the 230 TC tend to argue for:

    1. More muzzle velocity. You probably do want to pick the powder that gives the best velocity you can get for your desired pressure range (stated as not "hot rod").
    2. Heavier boolit. The small case and the autoloader platform dont help. As such there are not many choices over 230 gr and much less load data.
    3. Better BC / less meplat.

    At 45 caliber, you may still have plenty of smack with a RN, but you would definitely be going down the road less traveled to pick an RN over a TC for hunting. A 230 RN boolit with a flattened nose for a meplat just a little smaller than your TC might be a "sweet spot". Nose flattening is a really old trick to improve smack and there are a number of choices for how to do it. Simplest are a file or hammer. Best is set somthing up to use a reloading press.

    If you wanted to focus on 45 ACP in a revolver, you may have easier options for working with heavier boolits.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    4.2 BE under a H&G#68 Will run a BALL GUN or a WAD GUN .
    I have found it to be better then the shooter and half inch holes stop dang near anything from paper to critters.
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  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master tazman's Avatar
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    Jan 2014
    west central Illinois
    I really like the H&G 68 style boolit at 800fps+ for general purpose use. It is accurate in my pistols and feeds well. It also works for social occasions.
    Since I don't hunt with my 1911, I can't give an opinion on that part.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    East Central Illinois
    My one .45 acp load for 1911 and revolvers is a Lyman 452460 over 5.8 of 231. Old Lyman manual listed 6.0 of 231 as max and accuracy load. Accurate at 100 yards in a Sig 1911 and a couple of revolvers.
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

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  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    Mar 2014
    Fargo ND
    I have a SA 1911 (Mid 1990's era) and a Hipoint carbine in .45acp.

    4.5 to 5.5 grains of Red Dot under either the 230 gr TC or 230 gr round nose bullet.

    Ballistics actually favors the round nose for longer range.
    Like the OP I like the meplat on the TC, and I think they are easier to load, and have fewer loading problems, failure to feed with the TC. But I can't prove it.

    The other point is the .452 230 gr TC is a 6 cavity, the round nose is a 2. So guess which one I use.

    I have a LOT of confidence in this load.

    Out of a 16" carbine barrel, you are looking at 1100 to 1200 fps muzzle, or 493 to 550 foot pounds of energy at 100 yards.

    I don't have a chrony because it would be a real pain to set it up at my local range.

    So I can't say for absolute certain sure bet the farm that it is moving at that speed.

    And no I won't bet the farm on it, nor the house. Car maybe.

    It is more whoop@$$ than I hope to ever have to need. And its ready on tap.

    If you got evil on your mind stay out of Fargo ND!

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Feb 2011
    I use 5-6 grains of bullseye.

    Some times i have used others but i always come back to it.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    I think post #7 wraps it up for a useful .45 ACP (or Auto Rim) load. I've found some guns will shoot slightly more accurately with the Lyman round nose #452374 than they will with the #68 or clone #68, but the difference is not great. For quite a while, I've used the SAECO #069 and 5 grs. Bullseye for just about all .45 shooting.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

    HangFireW8's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
    Central Maryland
    Another vote for the 200LSWC and enough Bullseye. I have a 452460 I never use anymore because I got a Mihec brass 4 cavity, single lube groove version that rains boolits.

    3.9gr of Clay isn't much for deer, you can do better but stiffer loads won't turn the 45ACP into something it's not.
    I give loading advice based on my actual results in factory rifles with standard chambers, twist rates and basic accurizing.
    My goals for using cast boolits are lots of good, cheap, and reasonably accurate shooting, while avoiding overly tedious loading processes.
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  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Mar 2016
    I like the 200 swc over 5 grs of Bullseye. I have the 230 TC Lee but I haven't tried it yet. I've not shot a deer (yet) with the acp but if I do it'll be under 50 yards.

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  17. #17
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    DougGuy's Avatar
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    Apr 2013
    just above Raleigh North Carolina
    If it works good on bowling pins, it will do everything else with plenty of energy. I like a 255gr LSWC for bowling pins, but you may need to make sure the barrel has enough throat to plunk these, they work great. I have a 5" WWII era 1911 that gobbles up 454423 quite reliably, in front of 6.0gr Unique this is not punishing but it is stout enough for pins, deer, two legged varmints, etc..

    Taking a shot at 100yds with ANY LOAD from ANY open sighted 1911 would not be my idea of an ethical and humane kill. 50yds and less, yes of course. I don't know very many shooters or hunters that can hit a 6" paper saucer with a 1911 at 100yds with enough accuracy to place a humane shot on a deer, so I wouldn't do it myself. I suppose there are guys out there that can hit an insect at 100yds with a 1911 I just don't know any of them.
    Got a .22 .30 .32 .357 .38 .40 .41 .44 .45 .480 or .500 S&W cylinder that needs throat reaming? 9mm, 10mm/40S&W, 45 ACP pistol barrel that won't "plunk" your handloads? Shoot me a PM! Also on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cylinderhone-756429174391912/

  18. #18
    Boolit Grand Master Char-Gar's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
    Deep South Texas
    Taking a shot at 100yds with ANY LOAD from ANY open sighted 1911 would not be my idea of an ethical and humane kill. 50yds and less, yes of course. I don't know very many shooters or hunters that can hit a 6" paper saucer with a 1911 at 100yds with enough accuracy to place a humane shot on a deer, so I wouldn't do it myself. I suppose there are guys out there that can hit an insect at 100yds with a 1911 I just don't know any of them.[/QUOTE]

    Amen and amen!!!!!
    Disclaimer: The above is not holy writ. It is just my opinion based on my experience and knowledge. Your mileage may vary.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Allen, TX
    I've killed a couple dozen Texas whitetails with .45 ACP from a 625 Mountain Gun. I've used 240 and 255 Keith type boolits over 6.5 grains of Unique and a couple of factory loaded 230 JHPs. All have died within 25 yards and all were one shot. Haven't recovered a projectile yet. Best experience was two spikes in about five seconds (cull hunting operation). All shots were also within 25 yards, which I think is responsible for the good performance, accuracy wise.
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  20. #20

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    The Pacific NorthWet
    The Lee TL452-230-TC and 452-230-TC are quite similar to the Truncated Cone hardball bullets that were developed for improving the 45's effectiveness with hardball.

    I found those in j-word boolits would always feed in the 1911s I had access to, and they shot very well.

    So I can't say that those 2 molds will make boolits that will be THE answer for you, but you might give them a look. I'll probably get the latter and cast up a few hundred, and enjoy Not sure if I'll put those over Unique or what, yet.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check