Has anyone got a good every day plinking / target load for their 45 colt ?
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- Last Post 18 February 2019
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To be honest, when I want a .45 Colt target plinking round, I slip my .45 ACP cylinder into my Ruger SS Bisley .45 ACP/.45 Colt Convertible and use my .45 ACP target load (4.0 grs. of Bullseye, or equivalent) and a H&G #68 from Mihec mold) and have the perfect solution.
However, if I didn't have the convertible cylinder, I would simply use my "standard" .45 colt load. That is a Lyman 452424 250 gr. SWC (mine is from an NOE mold) ahead of 8.5 grs. of Unique. This is a great all purpose load for the .45 Colt. The performance level is pretty close to the original Black Powder load but far more effective due to the bullet I use. It shoots VERY well, the recoil is tolerable, and it cuts a clean hole in both targets and small game. It would also be excellent for a defense load.
With Bullseye powder load
4.5-5.0 grains with 230-240-grain bullet in the .45 Schofield case
5.0-6.0 grains with 250-260 grain bullet in .45 Colt case for "Cowboy Load"
6.0-7.0 grains with 260-270-grain bullet in .45 Colt case for "full charge" load.
(up to 7.5 grains with up to 260-grain bullet is OK in the NM Rugers, and 7 grains with 290-grain)
6.5 grains with 255-grain #454190 or similar approximates factory.
Archives have pressure tested data from Larry Gibson
73 de KE4SKY In Home Mix We Trust From the Home of Ed's Red in "Almost Heaven" West Virginia
I have to agree with Dale. My S&W 625-5" bbl, likes 8.5 gr of Unique, too. I use the original Lyman 452424 and get 1" groups at 25 yards.
With good grips it's a easy shooting load and shoots well in all my 45 Colt guns..
Several depending on the strength of the revolver:
Colt Single Action Army / New Service:
- 6.5 grains of Unique
- 200 grain H&G Semi-wadcutter
S&W Model 25:
- 8.3 grains Unique
- 235 grain SAECO 954
- 8.8 grains Unique
- 235 grain SAECO 954
These are not light loads in one sense. I saw my father kill two Dobermans who were in our sows and pigs with the "light" load with the New Service. The first one came out between hog houses and stopped. He died there with a direct shot in the head at fifteen yards or so. At the sound of the shot, the second one ran and died mid-stride at 40 yards.
Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest
5.5 grains of Trail Boss under a 454190 is a beautiful thing.
budhyett ... light loads ... yep, as one who mostly shoots plinking loads in 22, 6mm, and 7mm ..... lately i have been playing with " light-er " loads in my 45-70 ....
i have realized that with any 200 + grain bullets, even at 800-1000 fps, they just don't qualify for " light " .... more like a freight train at 18 mph ...
Been loading 225-230gr over 5.0grs Clays as a Revolver/Rifle load for Cowboy Action Shooting, great plinking load. Accurate as you could want.
Fall back on the old Std of #454190/#454424 over 8.5 yrs Unique, if I needed something serious.
Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun. Did I mention how much I HATE auto-correct on this blasted tablet.
Thanks David for the site help!
The Lyman 452424 has seen a lot of changes over time. My mold says 452424EV. Anyone know what the EV means?
EV will be Lymans abbreviation for the company or the in house person that made the cherry.
Well For the most of the 45 plus years of shooting the 45 colt i used the 454424 with 8,5 gr of Unique. Killed Deer with it and would shoot some quit long ranges. I had a 71/2 in Ruger that worked well. Also had a Colt 3 rd gen with 51/2 in that was a pleasure to shoot with that load.
If you want a little lighter load then 6 gr of Unique works well. It will still put varmints down and is accurate for plinking!
Jon Welda CW5 USA Ret.
I have a 4-cavity #454424 mould from the '50s or '60s. WW bullets as cast are around .456" or .457". I've sized as small as .452" without accuracy problems. For years, I used the popular 8.5 Unique load in handguns and a '94 Trapper carbine. Good load indeed, but in recent years I've found HS-6 provided at least slightly better accuracy. I don't load hot.
My family including my 9 year old son shoot 6 grains Bullseye under any 250 - 255 grain cast bullet. Seems like this load doesn't care about rifle length barrel, short handgun barrel, supposedly safe for Colt SAA pressures, etc. Load and go. As a plus, there are more than 1K rounds per pound of powder.
For my Ruger I loaded 6 grains of Bullseye under the 200 grain H&G 68 i used in my 45 ACP.
In the S&W 25 this load was inaccurate because the cylinder throats were 454 and the 68 cast too small. For that revolver I drooped back to 5 grains and used a LEE 250 RNFP bullet.
The bullet diameter must match the cylinder throats for best accuracy.
I enjoy shooting my Ruger ,45 BHK. Have tried the RCBS 250 RF & 255 Keith....I never did well with either in terms of acceptable accuracy. The Lee 250 RF & 255 SWC are very accurate as is an old Lee 240 WC. I use 6.5 grains of Titewad or 7,0 of Promo. I also have tried the 454190 as well as the 452424. I like the 452424 better because the 454190 has no crimp grove and even with trimmed cases I never can consistently crimp it. I should try to trade it off for Lymans 452664...if anyone would like to do so, please let me know.
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