Getting your powder charge close


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Is anyone loading 9mm Luger? 20 years ago when I was reloading 44 magnum for revolvers I always loaded them closer to the max. Now i'm getting back into reloading and doing 9mm and 45ACP. For you guys who are loading 9mm, are you closer to the start load?

I'm using accurate No.5 and Zero 115 FMJ's. The chart shows a start load of 5.7 and a max load of 6.3. All I'm trying to do is get it close the first time. The range is 45 minutes away and I can't shoot in the back yard to just test a round.

I shoot Walmart Blazer all the time and it shoots great. Does anyone know what kind of powder load would be equivalent to Blazer Brass rounds?

You need to keep the load as close to factory as light loads tend to not function all the time. Slightly higher, +P, is ok too if you have a gun that will safely shoot +P. My standard load is 5 gr. Hodgdon Titegroup. I remember using #5 and loaded 6.2. I use a Lee Disk measure so I have to find a cavity as close to what I might really want. Works out just fine.
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Guns&Ammo Handguns 2009 Annual has an article, " Handloading the 9mm for Accuracy", and a "Factory Handgun Ballistics" chart.
They show 115gr FMJs with muzzle velocities between 1135 and 1250 fps from a 4" barrel. Blazer wasn't listed by name. For 115gr FMJ, they just listed "Several" at a set af characteristics, "Several" at another set, etc. Slowest listed was 1135fps, fasted was 1250fps. Oh, muzzle energy is listed between 330 and 400 ft-lbs.
I've been able to find FPS data but no pressure data. For instance, if I knew the design pressure of a Blazer Brass round, I could cross reference that with the SAMMI start and max load data which lists pressure.. So if I know the powder weight and the pressure related to that powder weight, I can duplicate any round by knowing it's pressure.

I found this short list of SAMMI data. I have no idea if it is accurate.

9mm Luger (SAAMI standard = 35,000 psi. SAAMI +P = 38,500 psi).
.38 Special (SAAMI standard = 17,000 psi. SAAMI +P = 20,000 psi).
.45 ACP (SAAMI standard = 21,000 psi. SAAMI +P = 23,000 psi).
.38 Super Auto (.38 ACP = 26,500 psi .38 Super Auto +P = 36,500 psi).

All I can come up with so far is that they load to SAMMI standard. I'm not sure what that means. If my load data chart lists a start load of 5.6gr and a max load of 6.3gr with a pressure of 33,000psi, then loading to what the chart lists as max is still 2000pis under SAMMI standard pressure and should be safe for all guns.

Am I making sense? I think I'll call CCI/Speer (maker of Blazer Brass) and ask them what the design pressure is.


Some further research reveals that the SAMMI max is 35,000psi. It appears that my reloading chard lists the max conservatively. If a mathematical ratio between powder weight and pressure would be valid, and theoretically it should be, a start load of 5.6 would be about 31,000psi leaving a pressure range of about 4000psi between start and max.
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I talked to CCI/Speer today. If you want to know what the average pressure and velocity is on a specific lot number all you have to do is call them with the lot number. In my case, what I have in front of me had an average pressure of 32,846psi and an average velocity of 1087fps.

My load chart says 6.3 grain = 33000psi so using that ratio, 32,846psi should = 6.27 grain.

I find it interesting that Blazer Brass is loaded very close to what my chart says is max load. In reality, my chart says max load is 33,000 but SAMMI max load is 35,000psi. CCI said that they load to achieve best ballistics up to but never over the SAMMI standard.

Astute: Looks like you were right on as far as matching factory ammo.

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