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Thread: Clean Burn

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    Default Clean Burn

    People sometimes claim that a particular powder is "clean burning", (In a revolver) and now, maybe I know what theyre talkin about.

    I've loaded my 44 Mag. with H or IMR 4227, H110, and Universal, and the cases don't extract easily after firing, because there seems to be a film of something on the outside of them, which I'm assuming comes from the powder.

    Today, I had occassion to shoot a bunch of 44 Mag. loaded with BLUE DOT. I was using 15 grains and 240 grain SWC BB bullets. The brass came out easier, and bright and shiny, with no residue.

    Too bad I'm stocked up on those other powders. I might just become a Blue Dot fan.

    What other powders burn cleanly in 44 Mag. as I've defined clean burning?

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
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    I am asking the same question as my recent experiences with Unique have left me looking for another powder for my .44 Mag. Though it performs well, Unique just leaves a sooty film all over the gun. Not a big deal but it does warrant cleaning after each session. I have read some good things about Accurate #9 in both the performance and cleanliness categories. I am planning on picking up a can. Blue Dot does seem to garner similar reviews.

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    Quote Originally Posted by evandailey View Post
    I am asking the same question as my recent experiences with Unique have left me looking for another powder for my .44 Mag. Though it performs well, Unique just leaves a sooty film all over the gun. Not a big deal but it does warrant cleaning after each session. I have read some good things about Accurate #9 in both the performance and cleanliness categories. I am planning on picking up a can. Blue Dot does seem to garner similar reviews.
    evan; i was just going to offer my favorite powder...UNIQUE, as being a "clean choice". compaired to another favorite (2400) it seems clean to me. anyway, clean or not i usually clean my guns after shooting even at camp. jmo
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    Default Dirty powders etc.

    Herco is another powder that leaves a nasty residue and soot. Used with cast bullets it leaves a real mess.

    2400 has always left some unburnt powder gradules - I switched from it to W296 / H110 many years ago to get away from that issue.

    I picked up a can of Blue Dot a few days ago to try in the .44 Mag and larger. Velocities are close to that of other powders and it takes less powder per load. I do shoot primarily cast bullets so there will always be more residue that with jacketed loads and no one makes a cheap 310 gr. jacketed bullet.
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    LilGun is clean as I have used in any mag but never tryed Blue Dot. Unique, Bulseye, and 2400 can be real messy but are very good powders. H110/W296 is in the middle someplace it makes a light sticky/dusty residue but itís a very good powder that's only bested by LilGun IMHO.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinehavensredrocket View Post
    evan; i was just going to offer my favorite powder...UNIQUE, as being a "clean choice". compaired to another favorite (2400) it seems clean to me. anyway, clean or not i usually clean my guns after shooting even at camp. jmo
    I love how Unique performs and its versatility. I guess it burns clean in the sense that there is no unburned powder to speak of. But on my stainless Redhawk it is COVERED with a black slightly oily residue after a shooting session. I usually clean mine every time as well so I guess it's not that big of a deal. It would be nice to not have that stuff all over my hands though after shooting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by evandailey View Post
    I love how Unique performs and its versatility. I guess it burns clean in the sense that there is no unburned powder to speak of. But on my stainless Redhawk it is COVERED with a black slightly oily residue after a shooting session. I usually clean mine every time as well so I guess it's not that big of a deal. It would be nice to not have that stuff all over my hands though after shooting.
    evan; hahaha that reminds me of a training session on the police range where a recruit had "gunpowder" on his hands after firing a stage. while i was watching him shoot the next stage he was supporting the barrel -cylinder with his weak hand!! ouch!!! in a hurry to complete his round under time constraints, he forgot grip and support hand position.
    happy trails.
    jh

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    Quote Originally Posted by pinehavensredrocket View Post
    evan; hahaha that reminds me of a training session on the police range where a recruit had "gunpowder" on his hands after firing a stage. while i was watching him shoot the next stage he was supporting the barrel -cylinder with his weak hand!! ouch!!! in a hurry to complete his round under time constraints, he forgot grip and support hand position.
    Wow. He's lucky he didn't get burned or worse. I'm certainly not doing that! But I still end up with black hands. Such is shooting I suppose.

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    I'm not using your selection of powder but I've had great clean case results in a 243Win, 30-06, 300WM and 375 Ruger with RL-17. The new stuff is getting better on many fronts. The inside of the cases are still brass in color, not black.

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    I've only used it in light cast bullets like 185 grainers in .44 mag...but the cleanest powder I've ever had my hands on was Hogdon Clays. It's my go-to powder for .45ACP and .40S&W. You can shoot 100 rounds and barely notice anything.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Herco is another powder that leaves a nasty residue and soot. Used with cast bullets it leaves a real mess.

    2400 has always left some unburnt powder gradules - I switched from it to W296 / H110 many years ago to get away from that issue.

    I picked up a can of Blue Dot a few days ago to try in the .44 Mag and larger. Velocities are close to that of other powders and it takes less powder per load. I do shoot primarily cast bullets so there will always be more residue that with jacketed loads and no one makes a cheap 310 gr. jacketed bullet.
    I never even considered that Cast Bullets could be part of the problem.

    I don't shoot anything BUT cast bullets in my 44 or 357.

    My fired cases are so raunchy it effects their extraction.

    Do you think it's due to the Lube on the Cast Bullets?

    I've tried Unique, too. I find it's very economical, I but prefer a slower powder than that, to help me notice any possible Double Charge.

    Smitty of the North
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    Smitty, please don't take this as a derogatory thing, but I'm curious how often do you clean your cases? Do you shoot brass or nickel plated?

    I'm shooting nickel plated in my 44 Redhawk, 22gr of H110, and 300gr cast performance bullets. I get some residue, but not that much. My cases have very little residue on them, and what little there is wipes right off before I reload them the next time. So far I haven't even seen a need to drop them in the case cleaner. Extraction is a non-issue, and it still isn't with 23gr. I just didn't see the need to stay at the 23gr.

    Now granted, I'm a bit particular in not letting my cases get too dirty, but I've found the nickel plated 44 cases the easiest to maintain. I'd use nickel plated in my rifle cases too, but I don't have carbide dies for them.

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    Cast bullets and the lube on the cast bullets is a big part of the dirt and smuck on the cases and gun. Soft lubes like the alox and bees wax like I use are worse than harder lubes but the softer lubes cut down on leading in my experience.

    In cold weather I get enough lube and crude building up on the cylinder pin that the cylinder gets stiff and hard to turn. The stuff comes off easily with a solvent and appears to be mainly bullet lube mixed with powder residue. It appears to be the same stuff on the cases and inside the cylinders but that only makes sense.

    Try a clean powder like Bludot and some jacketed bullets and see what happens.

    Did you ever give the Lemi Shine a try for cleaning cases? There are also some $100 ultrasonic cleaners now that work wonders on dirty cases.




    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    I never even considered that Cast Bullets could be part of the problem.

    I don't shoot anything BUT cast bullets in my 44 or 357.

    My fired cases are so raunchy it effects their extraction.

    Do you think it's due to the Lube on the Cast Bullets?

    I've tried Unique, too. I find it's very economical, I but prefer a slower powder than that, to help me notice any possible Double Charge.

    Smitty of the North
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    People sometimes claim that a particular powder is "clean burning", (In a revolver) and now, maybe I know what theyre talkin about.

    I've loaded my 44 Mag. with H or IMR 4227, H110, and Universal, and the cases don't extract easily after firing, because there seems to be a film of something on the outside of them, which I'm assuming comes from the powder.

    Today, I had occassion to shoot a bunch of 44 Mag. loaded with BLUE DOT. I was using 15 grains and 240 grain SWC BB bullets. The brass came out easier, and bright and shiny, with no residue.

    Too bad I'm stocked up on those other powders. I might just become a Blue Dot fan.

    What other powders burn cleanly in 44 Mag. as I've defined clean burning?

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
    I'm by no means an expert on the reloading subject Smitty, but have you tried the Lee factory crimp dies yet? That's suppose to help with the powder burning, cuz it keeps your bullet in place longer so the powder burns properly before the bullet leaves the case. Just a thought from a reloading dummy on my part, but just seems to make sense to me in some ways. I'm sure I'll get cut down by someone on my theory, but thats how we learn this stuff........lol
    I can do the impossible right away. Be patient, miracles take me a bit longer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKDoug View Post
    I've only used it in light cast bullets like 185 grainers in .44 mag...but the cleanest powder I've ever had my hands on was Hogdon Clays. It's my go-to powder for .45ACP and .40S&W. You can shoot 100 rounds and barely notice anything.
    Another good clean burning powder I've tried recently with light loads in 44 mag was Hod Titegroup. I was using 240 gr LSWC and pushing them around 900 fps. This is my go to powder for 45 ACP so I decided to try it in 44. I'm thinking only good for light loads in 44 mag, but advantage is economical and supposedly not as position sensitive as other light charge weight powders.

    I have also found Hod HS6 to burn much cleaner than Unique in 44 mag and 45 Colt usually with better accuracy, though not sure why?

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    Quote Originally Posted by HuntKodiak View Post
    Smitty, please don't take this as a derogatory thing, but I'm curious how often do you clean your cases? Do you shoot brass or nickel plated?

    I'm shooting nickel plated in my 44 Redhawk, 22gr of H110, and 300gr cast performance bullets. I get some residue, but not that much. My cases have very little residue on them, and what little there is wipes right off before I reload them the next time. So far I haven't even seen a need to drop them in the case cleaner. Extraction is a non-issue, and it still isn't with 23gr. I just didn't see the need to stay at the 23gr.

    Now granted, I'm a bit particular in not letting my cases get too dirty, but I've found the nickel plated 44 cases the easiest to maintain. I'd use nickel plated in my rifle cases too, but I don't have carbide dies for them.
    I clean them every time. I don't have a case tumbler, but I wipe them off with a paper towell, and sometimes I use a Case Spinner and some steel wool to polish them.

    I got one batch of Nickel Plated brass to help rectify the problem, but it didn't seem to help much.

    When I say, the extraction is difficult, I mean that I hafta push hard on the pin to get them out of the cylinder, and then pluck them the rest of the way.

    It's the same situation with my Ruger Blackhawk and 357 rounds. I gotta hit them hard with the ejector rod, or they don't come completely out.

    Again, I use only Cast Bullets, and that's why I appreciate tvfinak telling me that Cast Bullets leave a film. I'm guessing that is the issue here, as well as the powder.

    Smitty of the North
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrizzlyH View Post
    I'm by no means an expert on the reloading subject Smitty, but have you tried the Lee factory crimp dies yet? That's suppose to help with the powder burning, cuz it keeps your bullet in place longer so the powder burns properly before the bullet leaves the case. Just a thought from a reloading dummy on my part, but just seems to make sense to me in some ways. I'm sure I'll get cut down by someone on my theory, but thats how we learn this stuff........lol
    Yep, I'm using a Lee Die Set that includes the Factory Crimp Die, and it puts a good on too.

    I have the same understanding as you about the need for crimping revolver rounds. It's spose to help ignition in the way you describe. Also, to keep the other bullets in the cylinder from coming out of the case from the recoil of the ones being fired.

    As far as I know, it could be an issue in how dirty the cases get.

    Thanks for your thoughts. I hain't no expert neither.

    Smitty of the North
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Cast bullets and the lube on the cast bullets is a big part of the dirt and smuck on the cases and gun. Soft lubes like the alox and bees wax like I use are worse than harder lubes but the softer lubes cut down on leading in my experience.

    In cold weather I get enough lube and crude building up on the cylinder pin that the cylinder gets stiff and hard to turn. The stuff comes off easily with a solvent and appears to be mainly bullet lube mixed with powder residue. It appears to be the same stuff on the cases and inside the cylinders but that only makes sense.

    Try a clean powder like Bludot and some jacketed bullets and see what happens.

    Did you ever give the Lemi Shine a try for cleaning cases? There are also some $100 ultrasonic cleaners now that work wonders on dirty cases.
    Thanks.

    Basically, I got clean brass goin in, and cruddy brass comin out.

    I've never mentioned it before, because I was sorta embarrassed by it. Was I loading too hot? Was my cylinder rough? Was I doing something RONG? Then, all of a sudden, using Blue Dot, things changed.

    If it's just crud, I can live with it. It doesn't put be out of operation. I'll keep using the powder I've got now, but when it runs dry, I can go to Blue Dot or the Lil Gun that ADFields reccommends.

    I've got about 30 of the Blue Dot rounds left, and I'll see how much better they do, when that is the only load I'm shooting.

    I do have some jacketed bullets, but wasn't planning to shoot them in my gun. I was gonna load'em for someone else. I might could do some testing with the other powders, or something, to get a better handle on this.

    Smitty of the North
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  19. #19

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    Smitty, Blue Dot is all that I've used in both 44 mag and 41 mag for several years. The top loads with jacketed bullets are a tad bit slower than say with 296/H110 but not enough that any of the deer that I've shot with it knew the difference.

    Also the only cast bullets I ever shoot(in the magnums) wear gas checks and that helps with a cleaner burn as well....keeps some of the hot gasses away from the lube!

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    Default Blue Dot

    I tried some Blue Dot again in .38 Spl and .44 Mag this weekend and it seemed to work fine. I did notice a few unburnt power flakes in the .38 Spl. but that is not usual with most powders.

    As soon as I get my chronograph going I'll get some readings this weekend when I have more time.


    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    Smitty, Blue Dot is all that I've used in both 44 mag and 41 mag for several years. The top loads with jacketed bullets are a tad bit slower than say with 296/H110 but not enough that any of the deer that I've shot with it knew the difference.

    Also the only cast bullets I ever shoot(in the magnums) wear gas checks and that helps with a cleaner burn as well....keeps some of the hot gasses away from the lube!
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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