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Old 01-12-2012, 20:58   #1
light-switch
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Dirty, muzzle flash, smoke... Normal?

I've been shooting my first reloads. Lead bullets, BE powder, CCI 500 primers, out of a Lone Wolf barrel. I've noticed increased muzzle flash and the gun running "dirtier" than shooting factory ammo. I verify each case for signs of overpressure and do not see them (bulging primer, scratched case, excessive force by ejector). The load I'm using is conservative 125gr bullet, 1.14 OAL, 4.0 of BE. Am I missing something, or BE is considered "dirty"?
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:03   #2
glock_collector
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Is it a muzzle loader?
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:10   #3
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The wax on your bullet is the primary culprit. Going with a plated bullet will nearly eliminate your smoke issue.
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:32   #4
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Lead is just dirty. It's mostly the result of the lube burning off. Powder does make a difference. I have never used BE with lead but I know it's not the worst choice by far.
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:35   #5
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I've been using BE for decades and often in loads similar or the same as yours. Muzzle flash is definately not something I have noticed.

Smoke is a product of using lead bullets. Some brands of bullets use lubes that smoke more than others. If it's a still day, or a poorly ventilated indoor range, especially if it's humid, will make the smoke seem worse.

I never understood the whole dirty thing. Lead bullets will dirty up your gun. After several hundred rounds you'll get waxy carbon crud under the extractor etc. It's nothing a little gun solvent like CLP or #9 doesn't wipe right off. A toothpick is a good way to pick it out without worrying about scratching anything.
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:38   #6
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Your load is for all intents the same load I used to run, 125gr LTC over 3.9gr BE at 1.145. As stated, bullet lube is the major contributing part of the smoke. The very fast BE powder doesn't help.

My rounds were for the most part fired thru the P226, my primary range gun. It would get absolutely filthy inside after 5-600 rounds between cleanings.
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:42   #7
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Lead is SMOKY.

I had the idea to shoot lead awhile back. All my practice was at an indoor range.

Ha. WAAAAYYYY too smoky. And I bought several thousand, luckily for me Jack bought them from me.

I'm shooting moly bullets right now from Bear Creek. Lead with a plasticized outer coating. They're between jacketed and lead for smokiness (maybe closer to jacketed), and they're easily $20 per 1000 cheaper.

But jacketed will be your cleanest shooting.
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Old 01-12-2012, 21:45   #8
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Just shoot it...

Wash your hands...

Clean your brass....

Reload and shoot.
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Old 01-12-2012, 22:05   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbarry View Post
The wax on your bullet is the primary culprit. Going with a plated bullet will nearly eliminate your smoke issue.
Yes, but the carbon from BE will still be there. I don't think the formula changed from when it was one of the first "smokless" powders. PRobably why there is so much carbon left behind. There are sooo many better choices today, but it has a huge following.
Yep, lead bullets will shoot diry, it's the lube mixing w/ the carbon. So yes, changing powders helps but nothing completely stops the smoke except using a dry lubed lead bullet or plated or jacketed.
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Old 01-13-2012, 00:40   #10
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The bullets will smoke due to lube but flash and dirty may be due to the powder you are using.
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Old 01-13-2012, 04:53   #11
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I remember my first lead reloads, those UltraMax rounds or whatever they're called.

Fired a few at the local indoor range, they immediately smoked up my lane so bad I had to quit. Swore them off for years, but discovered it's just a lead bullet thing with the wax burning off. I've since cast thousands of my own with similar results.
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Old 01-13-2012, 19:23   #12
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Thanks for all the replies, guys. I guess I'm too cheap to buy jacketed bullets for now so I'll just have to get used to the side effects!
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Old 01-13-2012, 20:32   #13
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Smoke, flame, soot, fire, dirt.

All part of the fun.
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Old 01-13-2012, 20:58   #14
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Switch to Unique powder.
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