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This thread is interesting, but I have to confess, besides seeing that different powders look different, I don't understand the point of this thread...

The chemical and physical composition of each powder is unique. They are developed as trade secrets. Single base, double base, a huge variety of burn rates and gas generation characteristics. None of this can be determined visually.

Reloading manuals exist because you have to determine safe loads (that don't generate overpressure) experimentally. This is done with instrumented chambers using specific compoinents and known powders. The experiements are measured, and the information on safe minimum and maximum loads of a specific powder / case / bullet / primer / chamber / barrel combination are published.

Going below the minimum or above the maximum generates dangerous overpressure.

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So... you find an unknown powder. Do you compare it to the pictures in this thread, and load according to the tables for a powder that it looks like? I don't think so! That is unless you want to perform your own experiments...

if you find an unknown powder, throw it away....
There are a lot of new loaders on the forum and I think this thread gives them more exposure to different types of powder, since they're unlikely to have had a chance to see more than a couple of powders.

But I totally agree that you can't tell anything about a powder by its looks and the proper load data should always come from reliable sources, like loading manuals or powder makers.
 
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What I get from this thread is it identifies what type of powder(ball, flake, or stick) each one is.

I'm pretty new to reloading, only been reloading since end of last year. I only load 223 and 9mm at the moment. When I started reloading 223 I went with IMR4064 and being a stick powder it doesn't throw very well in my RCBS Uniflow. I had a hard time trying to identify what powders are ball, flake, or stick using google.

Not a great pic, but heres my contribution.

 

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What I get from this thread is it identifies what type of powder(ball, flake, or stick) each one is.

I'm pretty new to reloading, only been reloading since end of last year. I only load 223 and 9mm at the moment. When I started reloading 223 I went with IMR4064 and being a stick powder it doesn't throw very well in my RCBS Uniflow. I had a hard time trying to identify what powders are ball, flake, or stick using google.

Not a great pic, but heres my contribution.

I use IMR 4064 in rifle loads using my Lee Auto Disk. Lee works by volume, not weight and I've found it easy to get a reliable, repeatable throw. I know this because I measure throws occasionally in my Dillon beam scale and they always stay in sync.
 

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I don't want pictures of powder....I want REAL powder.....hurry up, phony shortage.....get back on the shelves, will you??
 
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Nice pics and probably helpful but as commented before...lots of potential problems and dangerous situations trying to ID powder by pictures...I look at several of the tubular rifle powders and ball powders and that could be a real trap...but again..interesting and probably helpful in some circumstances.
 

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Of note - many pistol powders, especially of the round disc or flake type come in 14 oz containers as one pound or 16 oz would not fit into a standard one pound container (less density)

But, I guess everybody knows this but I thought I would mention it.
 

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I have the following on hand:

Herco
International clays
clays
Red dot
Blue dot
Unique
H110
H1000
ProReach
Long shot
Steel
R22
IMR 4227
800X
Universal
HS-6
Bullseye

The mods don't allow pics from Tapatalk app or else I would post pics.
 

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Great photos! That being said, I believe that using photos for general instruction about powders is a good thing. I think using photos to identify an unknown powder is a very chancy thing, and should generally not be done. A "type" of powder is fine, but apart from those that are a dead giveaway, e.g., the "dot" powders and 700-X (white dots), I'd be very reluctant to put a label on a specific unknown powder. On the rare occasion when there's some I haven't been able to identify, it goes into the flower bed. Makes great fertilizer.
 

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Old thread, I know, but it's a fascinating thread for a couple reasons. I'm not worried about identifying a powder by a photo, only an idiot would do that. I don't hang with idiots.

I noticed that Varget, which I've never tried, doesn't look like it would meter all that well, yet it's the one that many rifle guys swear by.

It surprises me to see that it doesn't appear that it would be that accurate by volume.
 

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Only powder I will take a picture of is the white stuff falling outside at the moment! The rest fell off the bass boat @ >70mph a couple summers ago.
 

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You all make me jealous!!
 

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I am not going to pour out quantities of such a valuable commodity (these days) but did get a photo of my powder 'shelf' yesterday.

152040


Pretty much just the open containers that get used fairly often, yes, that container of Bullseye in the back is old enough to be made of cardboard (a little goes a long way so it tends to last), there is a (literally) can of 4350 in the back row that's probably as old. A couple of the 'new' ones haven't been used enough to form an opinion, I tend to stay with 'tried and true' but hate to be left behind so .....

Bruce
 

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The chemical and physical composition of each powder is unique. They are developed as trade secrets. Single base, double base, a huge variety of burn rates and gas generation characteristics. None of this can be determined visually.
The pros use a gadget called a "bomb". Instrumented pressure vessel. They then run test samples in instrumented pressure barrels.

These photos are like taking pictures of a firearm or some liquid, then thinking we can make a firearm or fuel for our car.

It's nice to see them but for practical purposes, it's not too useful.
 
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