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45 Colt P+ Loads
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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BUCKMARK
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 10:31 pm    Post subject: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Hi all... I load the 454 and 45 Colt for deer for my Ruger Super Redhawk. I've been loading some 45 Colt P+ loads for it using 19.8 gr Alliant 2400, Win WLP primer, Win brass, and a Hrndy 240 HP/XTP. It's a nice, accurate, powerful load in my gun. A "light 44 mag" load for 50 yards or less without really pushing the limits of the 45 Colt case/pressure limits.

I've been looking at some other 45 Colt P+ loads that use a 240 gr. bullet. I found one on Handloads.com that looks "interesting". It's listed as a Hodgdon load from their 2006 manual. It calls for a max of 28.0 gr of H110 for a pressure of 30k CUP and to start at 25.2 and work up. Both the starting and the max seem awfully high to me for even a P+ 45 Colt load. I'm looking in the 04 Hodgdon free manual at a comparative 240 gr. 44 mag load. It listed a max of 24.0 gr of H110.

I realize with the slightly larger diameter of the 45 Colt, pressures can be a little lower. Does anyone have an 06 Hodgdon manual where they can verify this? Also, Hodgdon says to start at 3% lower for H110...not the usual 10%. Thoughts on/experience with this? Thank you...
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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 11:26 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

I know that H110 isn't forgiving with reduced loads, hence the 3% reduction.

I have the Hodgdon 2006 "Annual Manual" and it lists a MAX load for .45 Colt "Ruger, Freedom Arms & T/C only" using a 240 grain Sierra JHC over 28.0 grains of H110. 1532 fps from a 7.5" barrel and 30,000 CUP. The starting load is 27.2 grains of H110 for 1483 fps and 27,900 CUP.

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BUCKMARK
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2007 9:53 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Thank you Pumkinslinger - I appreciate your help.
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Elvis
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:29 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

ok Ive searched around to try to find answer before asking what will seem like a dumb question.... is the p+ meaning a high pressure load??? and only for the likes of new lever guns and ruger single shot rifles??? or is there some other explanation??

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SingleShotLover
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:55 am    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Generally considered for use only in Ruger .45 Colts built on the .44 Magnum frame or the extremely strong Redhawk, Freedom Arms, Thompson Center single shot pistols and various rifles. Since most lever guns are also offered in .30-30 Winchester at upwards of 40,000 CUP, these +P loads should be perfectly safe, but proceed with normal caution.

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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:23 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Yep, "+P" is loaded to a higher pressure than "normal" ammunition. You usually see it in older cartridges that are being used in modern guns. Some of my .45 Colt and .45-70 loads are "+P" but they are only used in my Rugers or Marlins. And I ALWAYS stay within the limits published by the bullet or powder manufacturers.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...ammunition

www.leverguns.com/arti...ssures.htm

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MacD
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:51 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Question in line with the OP? My Lyman manual 49th edition has a section devoted to the TC Contender and Encore single shots. There is no mention of Ruger large frame revolvers. My Lee second edition lists 45 Colt high pressure loads for the TC and the Ruger. This makes for confustion and may lead to reliance on less expert sources. Did earlier Lyman manuals include the Ruger? Some say they dropped it because Ruger makes the New Vaquero on a mid sized frame versus the old ones which shared the 44 mag frame with the Blackhawk and Redhawk, or so I have read.

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:08 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

There is normally an SAAMI standard for +P loads that is followed by the manufacturers of components and ammunition. The general rule-of-thumb is not more than 1% higher but that is not always the case. The 45 colt has been loaded to 80% over pressure of the standard loads and I believe the SAAMI limit is just under that amount.

NOTE:
The percentage of increase is in pressure NOT in the powder charges


If you increase the powder charges by the amount of pressure increase you will damage your gun at least and it could kill you.
Please follow recommended loads in your manuals, start low and work up slowly watching for hard extraction or other signs of over-pressure

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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:17 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Ruger states that the New Vaqueros are not capable of using the same loads as the Blackhawk or "old" Vaquero. I've tried some pretty warm loads in my .45 Colt Vaqueros (and Redhawk) that I'd never try in the New Vaquero.

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:31 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

My 45 colt won't take the +p loads either but that's OK because I generally carry 410 slugs in it.
With a 3 1/2" barrel at normal pressures the 45 slugs comes out at 600 fps and the slugs exit the barrel at over 800 fps.

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Paul
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Speer, Lyman, Hodgdon, Sierra, and Hornady = reliable loading data
So and So's pages on the internet = NOT reliable loading data
Always check data against manuals
NEVER exceed maximum listed loads
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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:23 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Paul, what do the slugs weigh?

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:46 pm    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

I don't know off hand but they are the standard 2 3/4" slugs in federal brand.

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Paul
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Speer, Lyman, Hodgdon, Sierra, and Hornady = reliable loading data
So and So's pages on the internet = NOT reliable loading data
Always check data against manuals
NEVER exceed maximum listed loads
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Elvis
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 12:37 am    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

87grain-1/5th oz doing 1830fps are the winchester 2 1/2" .410 solids

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SingleShotLover
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 5:41 am    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Large frame Rugers (.44 Magnum frame and Redhawks) are, if anything, over-engineered. This is a good thing for handloaders because it allows for much higher pressures. The mid-sized frames come along with down-sized cylinders (chamber wall thickness) which makes the use of such loads a hazard. Besides, that lighter frame probably wouldn't stand for a steady diet of super-hot loads either. The Vaquero and similar sized frames can still easily handle .45 Colt loads in the 1,000 fps or so range with bullets in the 275-285 grain class without stress. That big old heavy slug will still walk through a lot of bone and flesh at normal ranges.

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Vince
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:10 am    Post subject: Re: 45 Colt P+ Loads Reply with quote

Elvis, it is my understanding that the "P" designation in some calibres indicated it was loaded to a higher power for Police use. I have seen +P, +P+ and +P++ meaning it is a round loaded for Police use with each "+" meaning a little more grunt.

Ammunition with these designations should not be used in older pistols because they may not be able to handle the extra pressure.

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