Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

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GlennSFX
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by GlennSFX » Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:21 pm

Weapon wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:47 am
For coated bullets (acme lipsticks, blue bullets, etc), I would pull one and check the crimp. In my experience with them, you have to use a light crimp or the coating beneath the crimp line will sheer off on firing (or pulling). Some coated bullets need a crimp that is about .01” beyond just removing the bell added to allow bullet seating. When I pull a coated bullet, I want to see just a really light line around the bullet in the coating. If it looks like a very defined, deeper ring into the coating, I back it off until it is a faint line. I will add a pic of this when I get back home.

If you see specks of color from the coating in your machine, it usually means you need to slightly increase the bell of the case mouth before seating the bullet.

Additional note on crimping: Berry’s plated bullets also require a light crimp or you will get some bullet deformation and end up with paper plate sized groups at 25 yards.

COAL. 1.10” sounds a little short to me. Obviously, you need to double check these by plunk testing them in your pistol’s barrel but I would try to get them out to around 1.135” to 1.140”. Longer loads tend to feed slightly better out of double stack mags. You may have to bump your powder charge up ever so slightly to account for the extra space inside the case but it is usually a very, very small amount. I expect my 145gr RN loads to end up between ~1.140 to 1.145”

From what I had read, I also saw that you don't want to over crimp the coated bullets. I kept the crimp on the light side based on the setup instructions with the Lee dies.

When I was testing the press setup, I made up a few rounds with no powder. I took one, drilled out the primer pocket, and punched out the bullet pretty much straight out of the case. There was a tiny nick in the first picture. That's pretty much all I could see. What are your thoughts?

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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by GlennSFX » Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:11 am

@Weapon So I readjusted the press to have a COL of 1.135". I didn't have any loading issues at 1.10" so the longer length should make misfeeds a non-issue. From what I've read, shorter lengths are more accurate. The loads I tested were plenty accurate to 20 yards, so the 1.135" should be a good compromise. I tested the original 1.10" rounds in the gauge and in my barrel without any issues. The 1.135" was fine also. I made a 1.140" to test fit and it was fine as well.

I'll make 20 with a COL of 1.135" and test them out. I think I'll load 10 with 3.0g and 10 with 3.1g of Titegroup and see what I get on the chrono for PFs. Trying to keep it between 128-130.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:39 pm

From what I have seen, most Caniks will let you load really long (that isn’t a complaint). I haven’t had any noticeable decrease in accuracy from loading slightly longer - I have tried a few out to 1.152-1.153” with no problems but definitely plunk test several of those if you go that long just to make sure. Once you get to the point of bullet contact with the lands, pressure jumps considerably but the plunk and spin test will let you pick up on that before you try to send one downrange.

That pulled one looks about right. When you pull them, you are always apt to get the bullet a bit cockeyed on the way out which can cause a scrape on one side or another. So long as the crimp line is fairly faint, they should be good.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Mon Jul 15, 2019 6:59 am

Another Acme Bullet:

145gr RN NLG coated lipstick bullet

3.0gr Titegroup 1.145” coal, CCI small pistol primer, Winchester brass - 130pf

3.1gr Titegroup 1.145” coal, CCI small pistol primer, Winchester brass, 134pf

Crimp on both is very light due to the use of coated bullets as mentioned previously.

Additional thoughts: very accurate, mild recoil - definitely more of a push than a flip.

I am ordering some new jacketed bullets this week for testing as I found some that are only about $10 more per 500 than what I have been paying for coated.
Caveat: jacketed bullets will require slightly more powder to get to the same velocity.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Wed Jul 31, 2019 1:07 am

I tried some RMR 124gr jacketed flat points over Titegroup. They are definitely snappier with more muzzle flip than my 135gr Acme load but I haven't tried to play around with the recoil spring to tune the pistol to this specific load yet. They are incredibly accurate and with the right spring setup along with the quick slide cycling, they definitely have potential.
I'll post the load data for this one later in case anyone wants to try it out -- confirming FPS in the next couple days before posting it as I think my chrono was reading them a little slow. The curse of getting to the range with just enough light to getting readings...

124gr Blue Bullets. I got in some more of these and while they are snappier than my 135gr Acme loads (which are about the same as 135gr Blue Bullets), they are not as snappy as the jacketed bullets (expected).

124gr Blue Bullets and Clays (the Australian version of Clays). It sounded like a fun idea but no. It has problems metering well in the Dillon unless you strap extra contraptions on to the powder measure and that is concerning as you have to be near the max load per Hodgdon to get a comfortable margin over minor power factor. IMHO, it's not worth the effort in 9mm so I will save the Clays for .45acp loads. However, the loads were rather amusing around 110pf-112pf as they kicked less than my 22/45 loaded with Super Max.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:10 am

Retracting my previous opinion of 124/125gr bullets and Clays (Australian version). Getting the powder measure to throw consistent charges still requires some effort but after going over the math on that one repeatedly in my head, I was fairly certain I was getting bad chrono readings. So, I cleaned off the windows on the chrono, made sure the sky screens were aligned, swapped batteries, etc and retested it today with much better results insofar as powder charge, pressure and power factor. It may be worth the effort afterall.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Gemoose23 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:28 pm

If you haven't tried Alliant Sport Pistol, grab a pound or 8. I switched this year and it has been an amazing powder, low smoke, clean guns. I used everything else and always chased PF, I have too many used 1pound jugs of powder now. I just need to load them up for practice ammo as I now have my true powder love.

I have decided that Alliant Sport Pistol is the best for me for the following reasons:
1. Cheaper Powder
2. Low Smoke
3. Not as dirty as Pistol CFE, Win231, True Blue or Tightgroup.
4. Meters great in my progressive powder drop.

My Data for PF 134.48 Shot from TP9SFx:
Alliant Sport Pistol 4.10gr Precision Delta 124gr JPH Winchester Small Pistol COAL 1.15 Taper .377 FPS average: 1084.53

I read somewhere else on the internets it is actually the powder that Federal uses for their Syntech Ammo.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:38 am

I’ve looked for sport pistol locally and cannot find it. I will have to suck up the shipping fees and order a few pounds of this and that in the near future.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by GlennSFX » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:35 pm

Weapon wrote:
Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:38 am
I’ve looked for sport pistol locally and cannot find it. I will have to suck up the shipping fees and order a few pounds of this and that in the near future.
Been away for a little while... :sad:
Super busy at work and doing the kitchen over has been a huge project!!!
Hoping to have it completed before the end of Oct.

Anyways...I just received 4#s of Alliant Sport Pistol from Powder Valley Inc a couple days ago. https://www.powdervalleyinc.com/product ... istol-4-lb

Powder...$71.50
Shipping...$9.95
Hazmat...$19.95

So $101.40 delivered. $25/pound isn't bad. Wouldn't be any cheaper locally.
8#s works out to $20.48/pound. If I like it, that's how I'll be buying it.


Planning to load up some test rounds and get some numbers hopefully this weekend. Can't make any promises but I'll try. Stuff has good reviews and is reported to be a lot cleaner that Titegroup.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:56 am

If I can get Clays to work the way I want in my 650, it looks like it will be extremely clean burning but it wants to be difficult when it comes to metering.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by RAP » Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:20 pm

I use 3.2 grains of Sport Pistol with a Win or Federal SPP with a 145 Grain Brazos round nose coated bullet or ACME 147 grain coated FP bullet. I get a 136 power factor out of my TP9Sfx with great accuracy. When I shot Illinois Sectional a couple weeks ago I got the same PF across their chromo's. I have been using Sport Pistol for a couple years shooting Carry Optics in USPSA.
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:53 pm

One that some might be interested in:

Nils Jonasson’s SFx Carry Optics load:
4.05grs N320
124gr Berry’s HBRN
1.150” OAL
131pf
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Tripp » Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:46 pm

Awesome and helpful thread! My dillon press is in the mail so i have been reading a lot about what works well for people in the SFX. One question i have is about coated vs plated vs all else. Is there a specific reason someone would use Blue bullet or SNS coated bullets over non coated or fmj? USPSA members get %5 discount at Blue and SNS so i have been considering those, but i just don't know much about what the differences are in the bullets.

Thanks!
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Re: Reloading for USPSA Carry Optics

Post by Weapon » Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:09 pm

Coated bullets do not leave lead in the barrel like plain lead bullets. They are also cleaner when handling them (certainly more clean than any lead bullet with a lube groove) so less goop in your reloading dies and on your hands.

Coated lead bullets usually require slightly less powder to reach power factor when compared to jacketed while also being very accurate if you have the right size and weight for your barrel. Coated bullets are also typically less expensive than plated or jacketed so you can shoot more in practice or shoot more matches without breaking the bank account.

Plated and jacketed can be a little more consistent from one bullet to the next and can be loaded to higher velocities without issues. However, coated are usually plenty accurate for USPSA and minor power factor velocities are not a problem for them.
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