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Thread: Lil Gun

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub
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    Lil Gun

    Anybody here using Lil Gun powder in .357 rifle? Iíve been reading conflicting reports of how great the powder is vs how destructive it is to revolvers. I have a couple questions to anyone here who may have used this powder. Please answer to either or both.

    1. Are the reports of this powderís impressive velocity and accuracy true?
    2. Does the destructive aspects of this powder happen in rifles like it does in revolvers?

    Any help will be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    Just loaded some 180 grain .357's for the Marlin with it but I have not tested it yet. Information and charge weights are allover the place. I just went with data from the Hodgdon website for 180 j words in revolvers. Hope to test them this weekend.
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

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  3. #3
    Boolit Master


    Ickisrulz's Avatar
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    I will attest to the fact that it will heat up a revolver like no other powder I've used.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master Moleman-'s Avatar
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    I've found it pretty close to W296 chrony wise on a max load when used in rifles. Only started using it after Sandy Hook when powders started to become scarce and liked it enough to continue to use it. The deer my son and I got this past year were taken with cartridges containing LilGun powder. In rifles I haven't seen any evidence of erosion and I've gone through many pounds of it so you'd think it would of shown up by now.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master

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    I have used a couple pounds of it in my Ruger SBH Hunter in 41 mag with no visible signs of erosion. Also used in my Contender barrel in 360DW and 357 max. with no issues. You should be fine.

  6. #6
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    JonB_in_Glencoe's Avatar
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    I like it a lot for 22 hornet (I have a Ruger #3 single shot).
    I wouldn't use it in Revolvers, but there is probably some line to cross where it is destructive...and if you don't cross that line, you'll probably be fine.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    ďIf someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.Ē
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  7. #7
    Boolit Master



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    It burns hot. I wonít use it in a semi. (I know your asking about 357. But speaking to lil gun)

    I donít like itís tendency for pressure spikes. Donít compress it!

    Yes itís a top velocity powder. But thank fully velocity ainít the whole Picture.

    The heat or the temps it burns at simply heats barrels up faster. Heat is the enemy and barrel erosion is lil quicker. Itís not night and day but for me the trade offs ainít worth it when I can get 90% there with friendlier powders.

    Good luck

    CW
    NRA Life member ē REMEMBER, FREEDOM IS NOT FREE its being paid for in BLOOD.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    I've used couple pounds in my big magnums (goes fast with 40-ish grains charges). It heats even huge 460, 500 cylinders way too fast. In my experience it showed highest velocities. Then I've read all those stories about FC erosion and it just got me scared but even if stories were exagurated; the fact that after 2-3 cylinders I could barely touch the cylinder during reload turned me away from it. There are other powders available that I don't have to wear a glove for reloads.

  9. #9
    Boolit Bub
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    Thanks guys. I was thinking about buying some of this and developing a hunting load, but I may just stick with Win 296, IMR4227, and 2400 for my heavy loads. Maybe 300-MP, but I haven’t tried that yet.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master


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    I have been considering it for coyote loads in the .357 lever actions. Velocities are very impressive. If I had to hunt deer with the .357 it would be my first choice.

    Like others, I would not use it as my "standard" powder for the .357 as we shoot the .357's the most and would be concerned about heat and erosion. But for a handful (or fewer) shots at stuff that needs killing, why not use the best performing load?

    Hopefully I can find a load that shoots to the same POI as my "normal" loads.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy Randy Bohannon's Avatar
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    My go to powder for the 300 BO in my AR’s and bolt action rifles, don’t do Mag dumps it works .

  12. #12
    Boolit Bub DAVIDMAGNUM's Avatar
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    If you can wait a week or two I will let you know what my 1892 Japchester thinks. I have some 190 grain bullets cast from wheel weight alloy and some cast from hardball. I will hopefully be loading 15 or 20 of each with a couple/three different charges of Lil'Gun. I am looking for 200 meter accuracy for the full size rams in CLA Silhouette. I will make sure that I let you know what I find.....
    The "HOT" burn of the powder doesn't concern me. First, IF I use this in a match it would be shoot five rounds, wait 5-10 minutes for targets to be reset then shoot five more. Second, I shoot 44WCF and 45-70 Gov't rounds stuffed full of black powder. Those two rounds heat up a rifle a lot. They are also very accurate and don't damage the rifles.
    I will be trying Lil'Gun as all of the reloading literature that I have found show that with heavy for caliber bullets it generates less pressure and higher velocity than H110/296 or H4227.

    As a side note: Lil'Gun is more accurate with 300 grain bullets in my Ruger Bisley BlackHawk in 45 Colt than anything else that I tried.

  13. #13
    Boolit Bub
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    Quote Originally Posted by DAVIDMAGNUM View Post
    If you can wait a week or two I will let you know what my 1892 Japchester thinks. I have some 190 grain bullets cast from wheel weight alloy and some cast from hardball. I will hopefully be loading 15 or 20 of each with a couple/three different charges of Lil'Gun. I am looking for 200 meter accuracy for the full size rams in CLA Silhouette. I will make sure that I let you know what I find.....
    The "HOT" burn of the powder doesn't concern me. First, IF I use this in a match it would be shoot five rounds, wait 5-10 minutes for targets to be reset then shoot five more. Second, I shoot 44WCF and 45-70 Gov't rounds stuffed full of black powder. Those two rounds heat up a rifle a lot. They are also very accurate and don't damage the rifles.
    I will be trying Lil'Gun as all of the reloading literature that I have found show that with heavy for caliber bullets it generates less pressure and higher velocity than H110/296 or H4227.

    As a side note: Lil'Gun is more accurate with 300 grain bullets in my Ruger Bisley BlackHawk in 45 Colt than anything else that I tried.
    I can definitely wait. I’m in no particular hurry. Let us know how it goes.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master

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    I shot some in my Rossi 92. Velocities were higher, but barrel temps were too, but I was shooting fairly quickly. If I take my time between shots, it runs a lot cooler.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

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    It is not a powder for blasting a bunch of rounds down range.
    I bought 2 lbs 7-8 years ago and should last til I die if just using it for hunting. One or two rounds while hunting won't hurt a thing.
    Political correctness is a national suicide pact.

    I am a sovereign individual, accountable
    only to God and my own conscience.

  16. #16
    Boolit Buddy
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    Titegroup is hot too

  17. #17
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I've used it in .357 and .41 magnum Blackhawks with XTP bullets for one buck each. The velocity and accuracy were pretty good. I originally developed the .357 load in a Rossi carbine and it was good there too. But, I've decided that Unique and W296/H110 are all I need for my .41 magnum.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  18. #18
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    Minerat's Avatar
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    I use it in my 17 H Hornet but have not used in a pistol round yet.
    Steve,

    Life Member NRA
    Member: Clear Creek County Sportsman Association


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  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master 303Guy's Avatar
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    I use Lil'Gun in my hornet and it does heat the barrel (and the suppressor). I do compress the charge (a lot). It makes my hornet into a super hornet using R-P cases in my oversize chamber. A 55gr bullet at 2740 fps is not too shabby for a hornet. One day I accidently increased the charge by a small amount and would you believe the barrel stayed cool? So I made that my load. No more barrel heating - the barrel heating used to be like what one would expect from a 303 Brit or 308 Win and that from such a tiny cartridge!
    Last edited by 303Guy; 03-22-2020 at 03:00 AM.
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  20. #20
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    THE QUESTION was how well it worked in a RIFLE. Opinions based on revolver usage are not relevant.

    I loaded quite a few .357 Max rounds a few years ago, for a 12" barreled Contender. Accuracy was good, (not stellar because of the 180 grain hunting bullet I was using). Would have killed deer if I'd ever seen any that year.

    Generally speaking it provides better velocity at lower peak pressure than traditional powders. It is my go-to powder for .22 Hornet and especially my stable of .22 R2 Lovells, bullet weights up to 52 grains. I would use it in .357 rifles without a qualm, if I were loading for any right now. Still wishing that a good fairy will leave a nice .357 levergun under my pillow.

    The "burns too hot" business is hogwash. Boyles' Law, people. What may give the IMPRESSION of barrel heating is that it burns on longer than traditional powders, so the heat is distributed further toward the muzzle. For the same reason it will erode top straps and forcing cones in revolvers. Lil'Gun was, please recall, engineered for the .410 shotgun. Performance in revolvers was not a consideration, and it shouldn't be derogated if it thus misused.
    Last edited by uscra112; 03-22-2020 at 04:45 AM.
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