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TresRios
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 4:15am | IP Logged Quote TresRios

Does any one on this forum load the 45 Schofield? None of my reloading
books have any info on this cartridge & I have tried the data at the Hodson
site, with little success. I'm looking for a load that will push a 230 gr plated
bullet in the 700-750 fps range. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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J Miller
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 6:42am | IP Logged Quote J Miller

TresRios,

The Hodgdon Annual Manual from 2003 has the following data for the .45 Schofield:

Bullet: 230RNFP DIA.: .452"
Powder.....StartWT..Vel...Pres-CUP./.MaxWt...Vel...Pres
Universal..5.5......738....9,400.../..6.0....816...11,400
HP-38......5.0......719....9,900.../..5.7....816...12,700
TITEGROUP..4.5......702....7,800.../..5.8....866...12,300
CLAYS......4.0......697....9,400.../..4.7....783...13,600

From my experience you can use the same data with the plated bullets as with cast. As usual, start at the low end and work up.
HP-38 and Winchester 231 are the same powder, just packaged in the different brands containers.

Hope this helps some.

Joe

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TresRios
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 7:06am | IP Logged Quote TresRios

The only powder from this group I haven't tried js Universal simply because I
don't have any on hand. With the other powders loading at the maximum
charge I can't velocities over 600 fps. I was hoping to find a receipe Using
either IMR or Accurate powders. I would really like to use either SR 7625 or
4756.

Thanks far your input.

Edited by TresRios on May 06 2008 at 7:07am


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ArchAngelCD
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 11:00am | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Tres,
Handloads.com had a load data page with a lot of information. Here is the link for the data on the .45 Schofield. I have a few old books and some notes from an old-timer that I'll dig out and post later on today or tomorrow. I also have a Lyman book dedicated to cast bullet loads that probably has good data.
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Rigmarol
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 4:55pm | IP Logged Quote Rigmarol

Tres,
I'm playing with the idea of going with a .45colt Schofield. I want to shoot BP cartridges with it. Is that what you do or do you shoot smokeless?



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SCSlim
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 4:55pm | IP Logged Quote SCSlim

For what it's worth, my Schofield shooter is a Uberti-made 1872 Colt Open Top clone. I find the front sight to be "vertically challenged" (i.e., short), too much so to hit anywhere near point of aim at 25 yards with typically anemic factory loads.

So, to make mine hit where I want it to at 25 yards with a 6 o'clock hold on the center black part of a 25-yard slow fire pistol target, I load an Oregon Trails LaserCast 250grain cast LFP over 4.5 grains of 231. The extra bullet weight makes recoil compensate for the short front sight blade and brings the impact up into the center of most of the time.

It's a pleasant-shooting load and seems to find its way downrange at about the same speed as factory loads. The brass comes out a bit smokey sometimes - I'm thinking that a heavier charge or a firmer roll crimp might solve that problem.

I've also shot some Buffalo Bore 265 grain LFP-GC (gas checked) bullets with even better accuracy. 185 grain and 230 grain brass jacketed hollow points shoot pretty well out of the Open Top, but some Kentucky windage is required, being as how they're lighter and faster than the factory stuff.

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ArchAngelCD
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Posted: May 06 2008 at 10:18pm | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Tres,
There are about 20 loads listed on the Hodgdon Data Site for the 45 S&W (Schofield). I checked and the online data is identical to the data contained in Hodgdon's 2008 Annual Manual. (the pay for manual) I know you checked the Hodgdon site but you said you are using a "Plated" bullet. From everything I've read you can safely use the data for Lead bullets of the same weight and base profile for Plated bullets unlike the different data needed for Jacketed bullets.

Hope this helps a little...
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TresRios
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Posted: May 07 2008 at 11:07am | IP Logged Quote TresRios

Thus far, the best I can get in terms of velocity is 675 fPS with a 250 gr
bullet & 5.6 gr of AA #5. While this is better than what I have been getting,
its still not close to my target load.

For some reason I have never been able to achive the published velocities of
any of the Hodgton powders especially at the maximum loads they give. One
reason is, I think, because they have scaled back the maximun for some
reason. For examples I have seen older load books that give the HP-38
maximum for some calibers that are a half grain (.5) to .7 higher than are
listed now.

Thanks to all of you for your input.

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ArchAngelCD
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Posted: May 07 2008 at 11:56am | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Quote:
For some reason I have never been able to achieve the published velocities of any of the Hodgdon powders especially at the maximum loads they give. One reason is, I think, because they have scaled back the maximum for some
reason.

The main reason is, Hodgdon used a test barrel that's anywhere between 7.5" and up to 10". There's no way we can match the velocities they list shooting from a revolver barrel that's between 4" and 6" long.

an old friend used to shoot a 45 Schofield and if I remember correctly he used to use mostly W231. I'm running on memory here so I might be wrong but I think I remember him telling me he was able to achieve velocities close to 800 fps. I think the current SAAMI pressure limits for the 45 Schofield are the same as those for the 45 Colt which is 14,000 PSI. The Max charge listed on the Hodgdon site for a 230gr bullet and W231 is 5.7gr with pressures of 12,700 CUP. I'm sure you can use more than 5.7gr W231 without exceeding the SAAMI specs and get the velocity you are looking for safely. I don't want to tell you the charge he used to use because I can't be sure of my memory.
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Ed Harris
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Posted: May 07 2008 at 1:01pm | IP Logged Quote Ed Harris

I would try 4.2 to 4.5 grains of Bullseye. That's what I use in in my .45 ACP S&W Model 625 with the Saeco 230-gr. LFN Cowboy slug. From a 4"-5" barrel it gives the velocity range you seek and burns clean. Velocity will be a little lower in the longer Scofield case and it would be a mild, low pressure load certainly OK for your open top. Bullseye measures well and goes a long way when you can buy an 8# caddy for about $100.

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TresRios
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 2:42pm | IP Logged Quote TresRios

Just an update on my quest. I got some Hodgdon Universal from a friend
& loaded up some test rounds for 230 gr & 250 gr bullets using the
loading info from my Hodgdon load book. Started at the minimum load &
worked my way up to the max in .2 gr ircriments.

The results were dismal. At the max load, I could only get 525 fps with
the 230 gr bullets. What was more troubling was that was getting a lot of
unburned powder residue in the gun's cylinder & in the bucket where I
put the fired cases. CBy the way, I use Win LP primers in all my loads.) If I
remember correctly, having that much unburned powder is a sign that the
load is too light.

I've worked out a formula for reducing 45 Colt loads to Schofield specs &
I'm going to test some loads I made using IMR SR7625 as soon as the
thunderstorms & rain move out of our area.

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ArchAngelCD
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Posted: May 08 2008 at 4:03pm | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Tres,
Please give W231/HP-38 a try. With a 230gr lead bullet start at 5.4gr W231 and work your way up to 6.0gr. I'm totally sure you will get the velocity you are looking for from a charge of between 5.8gr and 6.0gr W231.

If that doesn't do the trick then try this. I just found a a 2002 Accurate Arms Yearly Manual. They have a Cowboy loads listed for the 45 S&W Schofield using several powders.

Here are the listings:
230gr LRN bullet - OAL = 1.450"
AA#2 5.3gr 870 fps
N100 5.0gr 867 fps
S1000 5.8gr 852 fps

255gr SWC bullet - OAL = 1.450"
AA#2 5.1gr 783 fps
N100 4.6gr 775 fps
S1000 5.5gr 801 fps

All rounds were shot from a 7.5" test barrel using a CCI-300 Primer and Starline brass.

I also have some data from a Hodgdon 2007 manual for Black Powder Substitutes in the .45 S&W.
Using a 230gr LRN bullet
Triple Seven (by volume, not weight)
25gr FFg 800 fps 6,500 CUP

Using a 250gr LRNFP bullet
Triple Seven (by volume, not weight)
25gr FFg 813 fps 7,500 CUP
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TresRios
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Posted: May 09 2008 at 1:25pm | IP Logged Quote TresRios

ArchAngel,

I've already tested 5.8 gr of Win 231 & I only got an average of 560 fps. I
have also tested AA Solo 1000 w/ lead & was still in the high 500 fps
range. Probably, if I had a 7.5" barrel, I could get the speeds I want.
However, I'm using a Uberti repo of the 5AA Regulator that has a 4.5"
barrel.

The problem is that most of the load data available is for CAS events
where the participants want mouse fart loads with little recoil. The
orignial load for the Schofield was very effective: a 230 gr bullet on top of
30 gr of black powder, (I have some BP, bat don't want b use if due to the
mess & the smoke causes my asthma to act up.) I've always been
uncomfortable with the small amount of powder I had to use for reduced
45 Colt rounds. Since the Schofield is 15% smaller than the Colt, I thought
it would be ideal for reduced 45 loads. I have the option of changing
cylinders & shooting 45 acp, but with all the brass I had left over from my
CAS days, I thought I try to work up an acceptable load for it.

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Posted: May 09 2008 at 1:55pm | IP Logged Quote stuffit

You can keep the same cylinder, I think, and try the .45 Cowboy Special brass that AdironndakJack devised. It's essentially a shortened .45 Colt and that way the reduced loads would take up more of the available volume and, perhaps give you better efficiency and a smile too. Haven't done it but you may want to look into it.

stuffit


Edited by stuffit on May 09 2008 at 1:57pm


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ArchAngelCD
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Posted: May 09 2008 at 4:08pm | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Tres,
Just a thought... You are getting very low velocities from your .45 S&W. Have you checked the bore diameter and all the other diameters which effect accuracy? I'm thinking you have a "larger than usual" bore or forcing cone which is effecting the bullet enough that it's not sealing in the barrel thus losing pressure/velocity. You might need bullets that are just a little wider.

What diameter bullets are you using? If you're using .452" bullets you might need to use bullets with a diameter of .453" or .454". (or more) Beartooth Bullets sells bullets with variable diameters without an extra charge.
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TresRios
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Posted: May 09 2008 at 5:48pm | IP Logged Quote TresRios

No, I haven't slugged the barrel to get the exact diameter However, I put
the 45acp cylinder in the Regulator's frame & fired some of my 1911
loads across the chronograph to see what the loss in velocity would be in
a revolver. I was using the same Rainier bullets that I'm using for the
Schofield test. I ran 12 rounds & found that I losing about 25 to 35 fps
compared to the 1911 data. I think this is due to the cylinder gap letting
gases escape. Thus, it would seem that since the same bullet in the acp
load is almost maintaining a recorded velocity, then it should work in the
Schofield. (Also, the Rainier has a bevel base that expands to grab the
rifling.) Maybe I should talk with my gunsmith buddy & see what he
thinks.

Also, instead of putting a taper crimp on the round, I use a pretty stiff roll
crimp since the lead is fairly soft & will take a roll.

Right now, I am contemplating taking the low end of a 45 Colt load using
a powder that's pretty mild to see what would happen. Another idea is to
take a max load for the Schofield, substract from the minimum Colt laad
& split the difference. I just don't know what direction to take right now.

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TresRios
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Posted: May 10 2008 at 3:25pm | IP Logged Quote TresRios

Update.

I took my Regulator to Doc's today & he slugged the barrel. The diameter
came in at just under .452. So I decided to run a little test of my own to
see just how much barrel length effects velocity. I have a Uberti copy of
the S&W Model 3 in 44 Russian with a 6.5" barrel. I had loaded some of
the Russian brass as plinking rounds for my Model 21 (4" barrel) I set up
the chronograph & checked the speed of six rounds of the Russians from
my Smith. Then I clocked six rounds using the Uberti clone. The rounds
from the Uberti were moving about 150 fps faster than the rounds from
the Smith. I knew that barrel length would effect velocity but I didn't think
it would be that much of a difference.

I have decided that, for now, I'm going to put the Schofield brass in
storage & put the 45acp cylinder in the Regulator until I can find some
data that would make the gun viable to shoot, I may call same of the
powder companies to see if any further research has been done for this
cartridge or if they are planning to do so. Heck, I've been wanting a Smith
625 for some time & appears I now have an alternative.

I want to give those of you who tried to help me my heart-felt Thanks for
all your trouble.

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Posted: May 10 2008 at 9:54pm | IP Logged Quote ArchAngelCD

Tres,
You're welcome but it was really nothing... I wouldn't consider looking in a few books trouble, it's actually fun to hunt down data and try and find a correct answer.

Since you found you are losing that much velocity to the shorter barrel you might want to try using a slower powder that you would normally associate with the .45 S&W. I'm guessing a powder like HS-6 or even Longshot will give you better results than the powders you've already tested. Just another thought to throw into the mix.
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