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Thread: Speer 8 Warning

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Speer 8 Warning

    What Speer manual and page is the warning about the Speer 8 data on? I was trying to warn a guy about using the maximum loads, but he doesn't believe me. I thought it was in Speer 10, but I can't find it.

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  2. #2
    Boolit Master

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    Even if you quote him chapter and verse,,,,,,
    some people just have to go wizz on that electric fence and learn for themselves.
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  3. #3
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    from the web "Speer #8 is often quoted and misunderstood. This is probably the hottest data out there and should NOT be used by beginners. Many of the listed loads are known to be over pressure limits considered safe today, and be used with extreme caution. This book should be used as a historical reference only."

    Personally I always consult multiple sources for recommendations.

    This mostly applies to bolt guns with higher pressure cartridges but a loading manual is nothing more than a recommendation for that chamber and load combination. Nothing more.

    In guns like 1873 Colt in a 45 Colt manuals become much more gospel since pressure signs don't show until well past the 14,000 PSI. Unless you have strain gauges velocity is your only real indicator.

    The point is that loading manuals should be safe with all the normal combinations but that is not always the case.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 06-13-2021 at 11:26 PM.
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  4. #4
    Hello Jim,

    Some people just wont listen, they think they need the heaviest load possible.
    If it was me, I'd just ask him to not shoot next to me.

    AntiqueSledMan.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Tecs View Post
    from the web "Speer #8 is often quoted and misunderstood. This is probably the hottest data out there and should NOT be used by beginners. Many of the listed loads are known to be over pressure limits considered safe today, and be used with extreme caution. This book should be used as a historical reference only."

    Personally I always consult multiple sources for recommendations.

    This mostly applies to bolt guns with higher pressure cartridges but a loading manual is nothing more than a recommendation for that chamber and load combination. Nothing more.

    In guns like 1873 Colt in a 45 Colt manuals become much more gospel since pressure signs don't show until well past the 14,000 PSI. Unless you have strain gauges velocity is your only real indicator.

    The point is that loading manuals should be safe with all the normal combinations but that is not always the case.
    The thing I remember being discussed the most were the 38 Special loads. One guy on THR or TFL, I think, said he literally blew a model 10 up. One thing that shocked me was the 70,000+ PSI pressure rating after they tested some of the loads. I really wish they had said, which loads were tested.

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    Last edited by jimkim; 06-14-2021 at 11:35 AM.

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  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy
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    I will need to dig out my copy... But, I am pretty sure the 38Spl loads were developed in a "real" 38-44 revolver.
    Kinda Ignorant to put, even close to, the max in a M10.. But... If all you look at is the Load Chart.. Poo Poo Occurs!!!!

  7. #7
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    Ahh....The Speer #8. Also known as the Intrepid manual or where only Fools dare go.

    I have one in my collection of loading manuals. Some of the loads listed in there should put a brown stain in your shorts if ya got half a brain.

    For those people that think they are smarter than the companies that make these manuals...I shoo them away and ignore them.
    NRA Benefactor.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnt Fingers View Post
    Ahh....The Speer #8. Also known as the Intrepid manual or where only Fools dare go.

    I have one in my collection of loading manuals. Some of the loads listed in there should put a brown stain in your shorts if ya got half a brain.

    For those people that think they are smarter than the companies that make these manuals. I shoo them away and ignore them.
    So since Speer made the #8 we should blindly follow it?????????? So you're a fool if you follow it and a fool if you don't? Interesting perspective.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 06-14-2021 at 02:42 PM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    "Before you argue with someone, ask yourself, is that person even mentally mature enough to grasp the concept of different perspectives? Because if not, there’s absolutely no point."
    – Amber Veal

    "The Highest form of ignorance is when your reject something you don't know anything about".
    - Wayne Dyer

  9. #9
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    I remember seeing a warning in Speer 10 about Speer 8, but dang if I can find it.

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  10. #10
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    Prudence dictates starting at minimum and working up. Each firearm is unique and should be treated as such. These are the rules and as such,should be adhered to no matter the verified load data.
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  11. #11
    Boolit Man
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    So in 1971 nobody used 8 because the loads were too hot? Nobody loaded max back then?
    ..

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by loveruger View Post
    So in 1971 nobody used 8 because the loads were too hot? Nobody loaded max back then?
    ..
    People are people and lots of folks start with max loads back then. Same as they do today.

    I've kept every manual I've owned since 1968. Most manuals have some questionable data in them. That would be why most manuals have a long and detailed section on indicators for unsafe loads.

    I started loading in 1968 and I never had an issue with any data out of #8. I did have an issue with a load out of the Lyman Shotgun Manual in the mid-70's. I don't remember which manual but it has 35 Whelen data in the 35 Rem section. Same for several other manuals with mistakes or overly warm data. That why I always cross reference new loads and when applicable watch for pressure signs or abnormal velocity just like the manual states you should.

    https://www.hornady.com/support/faqs...same-cartridge

    Why does load data listed in various manufacturers' loading manuals differ when loading the same cartridge?
    The size of the specific firearm chamber, throat dimensions, seating depth, bullet profile, propellant variances and crimping depth can all contribute to variations in load data. The data found in the Hornady loading manual represents actual results derived in the Hornady Ballistics Laboratory. Hornady recommends that reloaders always start with the “starting load” and work up cautiously until they achieve the performance they're looking for. If pressure signs become evident, stop immediately and reduce the load or try another propellant.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 06-15-2021 at 12:12 AM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    "Before you argue with someone, ask yourself, is that person even mentally mature enough to grasp the concept of different perspectives? Because if not, there’s absolutely no point."
    – Amber Veal

    "The Highest form of ignorance is when your reject something you don't know anything about".
    - Wayne Dyer

  13. #13
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    I have never understood why some folks think starting loads are to be ignored. I don't know which Speer manual it was but one of them showed loads that the powder charge recommended wouldn't fit in the case.

  14. #14
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    I do remember comparing the Speer manual data with the data in my Lyman book and wondering why there was a difference. The Lyman loads all seemed plenty powerful and it made no sense to me to push it.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by loveruger View Post
    So in 1971 nobody used 8 because the loads were too hot? Nobody loaded max back then?
    ..
    They didn’t wear helmets to ride a bicycle, kids rode on the package tray because there was less smoke there and child safety seats were unheard of, hell, seatbelts in cars were not even standard equipment until the ‘60’s but leaded gas was.

    That said, people also didn’t sue if they asked for hot coffee and someone gave them hot coffee…and if they got fat it wasn’t the fault of someone cooking but rather themselves eating.
    Last edited by jmorris; 06-15-2021 at 09:38 AM.

  16. #16
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    it was not that long ago that mr Gibson posted information here after doing some pressure testing using old Speer data for green dot and found that some of the loads in the book were way too hot, my interpretation, "downright dangerous"

  17. #17
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    I began reloading in 1966 and have always used a Speer manual. Why is this the time I learn about these "hot" loads? I have been on this forum for a good spell and this is all news to me. I have a few boxes that were reloaded a long time ago, some of it for guns I don't own any more. Looks like I have to do an inventory and get out my old copy of Speer #8 and then look at my newest Speer #14 to see how they compare.
    Last edited by 762sultan; 06-15-2021 at 04:33 PM. Reason: left out a word

  18. #18
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    Whenever this topic surfaces, and it does so regularly, I wonder how many of those who comment actually own or have ever seen a Speer #8 manual. This was my second Speer manual purchased in 1971. It supplanted my first manual, Speer #6, purchased in early 1965. I doubt much of the data was pressure tested, pretty common for handloading manuals then, but handloaders learned to handload by reading manuals that were actually put together by real recognized experts. People probably got a far better education then than those with a hit-or-miss education that came from YouTube or some Internet authorities with dubious credentials.

    Putting all this in perspective doesn't alleviate the fact that some loads in #8 were warm to maybe potentially dangerous, but the handloader using the data fifty years ago might have understood things far better than some today that may not really know much about handloading at all.

    The .38 Special data in #8 was tested in an S&W K-38 (Model 14) and not an N-frame revolver. I tried some of the #4756 and #2400 loads, but never the maximum load. I'd stop at the middle load recommendation. I didn't tear anything up.

  19. #19
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    Lyman #45 was my first and like you the Speer #8 was my second purchased in late 71 or early 72. I've kept every manual I have ever owned with the exception the the two P.O. Ackley books.

    In the past Lee has had some beyond warm loads.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 06-19-2021 at 05:51 PM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    "Before you argue with someone, ask yourself, is that person even mentally mature enough to grasp the concept of different perspectives? Because if not, there’s absolutely no point."
    – Amber Veal

    "The Highest form of ignorance is when your reject something you don't know anything about".
    - Wayne Dyer

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    I'm no expert but I'm pretty sure Speer would have tested the loads they put in book using state of the art at the time which was copper crusher pressure testing equipment, or whatever its called. when newer equipment was developed it was found to be much more accurate and reached a point where exact PSI of every load could be determined and this is the reason why some older load manuals have much hotter maximum loads than more modern manuals and while some loads with erratic spikes were eliminated such as what Alliant did with certain loads using blue dot in 357 mag using 125 grain bullets and eliminated all data for 41 mag

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