I sure like this powder [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Kentguy
11-10-2012, 15:13
Greetings,

I am speaking of Hodgdon's Universal powder. It seem like to more I use this powder, the more I like it. My press likes it also, it meters very well, burn clean and give me great results for not only target rounds but in service rounds (hollow point bullets) as well.

http://www.hodgdon.com/burn-rate.html

According to Hodgdon Burn rate chart, it puts Universal right in the same crowd with these;
29 Winchester 231
30 Alliant 20/28
31 Alliant Unique
32 Hodgdon UNIVERSAL
33 Alliant Power Pistol
34 VihtaVuori N330
35 Alliant Herco
36 Winchester WSF

I have used this powder with .380, 9mm, 38 special & .45 acp with various bullet weights and configurations, both jacketed and lead. I may have had 1 or 2 test rounds that I didn't care for but most were very successful.

The one characteristic of this powder that seem to stand out and be a constant no matter which caliber I load for is that; the charge amount that gives me the best all-around performance is when the charge amount is on the higher end of a manuals powder range.

Fast becoming one of my favorite powders

njl
11-10-2012, 15:25
What bullet weights are you using with Universal Clays? I'm happy with it in 9mm for 124 and 147gr. For the 124's, I load on the low end. For the 147s, at the top end.

I tried it with .45acp 230gr FMJ and didn't like it. At the low end there was unburned powder and really low velocity. As the charge increased, the amount of recoil that came with increased velocity seemed excessive. Regular Clays or WST are much better for .45acp IMO.

Kentguy
11-10-2012, 15:41
njl,

Too many different types of bullets to mention but if you are referring to just 9mm, I can give you this one example.

Casing - Federal - (used) tag - FC
Case length - .754" (standard)
Primer - CCI Small Pistol #500
Bullet - 124g RN FMJ .355" dia. (Precision Delta)
Bullet length - .606 "
Powder - Hodgdon Universal @ 4.8g
Powder range - 4.5g up to 5.0g (Speer)
Burn rate - #32 (Hodgdon)
Bullet seating OAL - 1.135"
Velocity - 1,154.2 fps my 5 shot average @ 73 degrees
Test Gun - Glock 17 w/4.49" Barrel

For all around performance, the final charge amount was actually a coin toss between 4.8g & 4.9g, but my powder dispenser kind of made the decision for me. It meters out 4.8g almost all the time (a few heavier at 4.9g no big deal) so that is what I load and shoot for this round.

Lighter charges did not work out as well, even with Hornady's 124g XTP HP bullets.

njl
11-10-2012, 15:45
I actually do that same load, but at 4.3-4.4gr, and get about 1070fps from a G17.

fredj338
11-10-2012, 15:51
I like it w/ jacketed bullets, but not so much w/ lead, accuracy just isn't there. Sicne I shoot mostly lead, it is not on my fav list. I prefer WSF or even Unique in that same burn rate.

Kentguy
11-10-2012, 18:26
fred,

I agree, I much prefer WSF with lead, not sure why Universal doesn't perform as well. The description of both given at their respective web sites are not that dissimilar. I have worked up loads with both and have found that Universal is rather "ho-hum" when it comes to performance/accuracy with lead.

The only load I have where H. Universal gave me a really nice target load with with 38 special using 158g LSWC bullets.

Case - Federal Stamped (FC)
Case length - 1.155" (standard)
Primer - Federal small pistol #100
Bullet - 158g LSWC (Missouri-Match)
Powder Hodgdon Universal @ 4.5g
Powder Range - 4.2g up to 4.7g (Lyman)
Powder Burn Rate - #32 (Hodgdon)
Bullet seating OAL - 1.445"
Velocity - 771.3 fps my 6 shot average @ 74 degrees
Test Gun - S&W .38 Special Model 10-6 w/4" bull barrel

Although the velocity #'s are a bit slow, it has produced a great & accurate target load out of my revolver.

However for Jacketed bullets with Universal... :thumbsup:

WiskyT
11-10-2012, 19:41
I found half a pound of it in my father's stuff. It does nothing Bullseye won't do. It works great with cast and plated bullets...if you use it for bunnyfart loads. You might as well use Bullseye for that. As for jacketed, any powder will work well with a jacketed bullet. I was glad when it was gone.

Everyone likes to say it mimics Unique. It doesn't. It is in between Bullseye and Unique in terms of what you can do with it. It's about like 231. I have no use for a powder in that range. I need three powder speeds, fast, medium, and slow. To bother with something in between fast and medium serves no purpose for me.

I also have no use for several different powders in the same range. Before I wised up, I ended up with Unique, SR4756, Power Pistol, and AA#5. There isn't a nickel's worth of difference between any or all of them. I've used up most of the AA#5, the PP is next, and then I'm going to use up the SR4756. That will leave me with one powder in that range, Unique, which is all I need for my 25-30kpsi shooting.

Universal would be a good powder if it DID act like Unique, but then you could still use Unique and skip the Universal.

Kentguy
11-11-2012, 05:56
WiskyT,

Certainly it is nice to have a "go to" powder(s) for most all your applications, I think that is a goal of most reloads.

I'm one of those rare people around here who hasn't tried Unique and just based on other folks loads that I have seen... for now I'll pass.

Like yourself I have a few bottles of this and that on the shelf, most all I like but a few are OK. This past Spring I bought a bottle of Hodgdon Universal and started putting together some loads and right off the bat I liked the results. True you can put some mild target rounds with it but I have some loads that will get your attention when you pull the trigger!

More importantly the result I like the best is the bullets don't stray all over the target as with some other powders I have tested, it meters well and it burns consistently, easy to predict.

Anyway, thanks for the feed back

gwalchmai
11-11-2012, 15:13
I have some and it's OK, but I really prefer Unique. Some folks say Unique's dirty but I don't find it more so than others.

sourdough44
11-12-2012, 03:30
Sign me up as another 'Universal' fan. I found Unique a little on the 'gravely' side, mostly relegated to my 45 Colt loads. I use Universal for a wide variety of handgun loads.

Kentguy
11-12-2012, 05:44
gwalchmai... "Some folks say Unique's dirty but I don't find it more so than others."

I'm sure that as all of us that have tested a group of powders have found that some just don't work well in this load or that and some are just great.
For me an example of this is Winchester 231, this powder "kinda" falls into that category, but I like it and use it often.

I have read soooo many posts where folks will brag on this powder or that, and they may be right! I just jot down those powders and if I ever hit the lottery and money becomes no object... I'm going on a powder buying spree. :supergrin:

Hodgdon Universal... try it, you'll like it, and if you don't - send it to me. :thumbsup:

gwalchmai
11-12-2012, 05:48
Hodgdon Universal... try it, you'll like it, and if you don't - send it to me. :thumbsup:You don't really want to pay what it would cost for me to send you a half-pound of Universal... ;)

fredj338
11-12-2012, 09:10
gwalchmai... "Some folks say Unique's dirty but I don't find it more so than others."


I have read soooo many posts where folks will brag on this powder or that, and they may be right! I just jot down those powders and if I ever hit the lottery and money becomes no object... I'm going on a powder buying spree. :supergrin:

Hodgdon Universal... try it, you'll like it, and if you don't - send it to me. :thumbsup:
I try new powders all the time. I am a tinkerer by heart so can't just go with th flow. Since I load for something like 25 diff calibers, I buy a lot of 1# cans of this or that to try & you learn the diff, pros & cons between them all. If you like it, all that matters really (except TG). I could probably load all 25 calibers w/ either Unique for handguns & IMR 4350 for rifle, but where is the fun in that.:supergrin:

Kentguy
11-12-2012, 11:01
fred "...I am a tinkerer by heart..."

AH, a man after my own heart! I love the investigation part of reloading as well as the testing aspects of it and when you find a combination that works… now that’s what I’m talking about! For now I am only reload for handgun loads, I am amazed now-a-days just how many powders you can use for any given caliber. As an example I looked back in my notes and found I tested these powders with a 9mm load, to find all of them came up with a good target round for my G17.
Using the - 124g FMJ RN (Precision Delta)
Winchester AutoComp
Winchester 231
Winchester WSF
Allinat Bullseye
Alliant Power Pistol
Accurate Arms #5
Hodgdon HS6
Hodgdon Universal
Each one displayed its own particular character and function even when using the same bullet/weight. Then you toss in OAL & temperature, the gun, length of barrel... I know some folks are yawning right now but to me this is all not only interesting but quite a bit of fun! It also shows the wide variation of powders that can be custom tailored to your own individual needs.
I do suppose that I will have to pick up a bottle of Unique some time here… who knows… anything is possible, I may even like it.