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Discussion Starter #1
Excuse the silliness of my question. But...I am almost done with a 1LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that a friend of mine gave me ( I may get another 50 rounds of 9MM out of it). I have a new 8LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that I purchased a few weeks ago. Can I go ahead and continue reloading with the new batch of CFE Pistol as I was with the older batch or do I have to test the new batch and work up a load again?

In other words I'm currently using 5.3 grains of CFE Pistol powder for 124 grain 9MM and 6.3 grains of CFE pistol powder for 230 grain 45 acp. Once I start using the new batch can I continue using the same 5.3 and 6.3 grain loads or is it range test time again?

Also can I mix the two batches in powder measure and keep on reloading?
 

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There was a great article in last month's Handloader magazine comparing rifle powders from batches several years apart. They found some slight differences, but not so much that the loads were unsafe or had markedly different points of impact. The message I got from the article was that if you have a maximum load - one that is pushing the edge - that you should drop back a bit when switching batches of powder and if you are loading for ultimate accuracy, you should re-zero when changing batches.

However, if you are loading pistol ammunition and aren't pushing the edge of the pressure envelope, you won't notice a difference between batches. I would think this is especially true of a new power like CFE.


Jim
 

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It is good practice to reduce loads when you change any components. Based on reloading data from Hodgdon's website, for 45 CAP loads using 230 gr Hornady FMJ and CFE Pistol powder; the starting point is 6.0 gr8 and the maximum load is 6.8 gr. Your 6.3 gr load is okay to use.
For the 9mm Luger loads using 124 gr lead truncated point withe CFE Pistol powder, Hodgdon starts at 4.9 gr8 and maximum load is 5.5 gr. Your crrent load is close to max. I would drop it down to 5.1 gr and load maybe to magazines worth at that level and check for any pressure issues. After shooting all your reloads, if there are no issues go back up to 5.3 gr.
By the way, the only stupid questions are the ones you didn't ask but should have.
 

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Excuse the silliness of my question. But...I am almost done with a 1LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that a friend of mine gave me ( I may get another 50 rounds of 9MM out of it). I have a new 8LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that I purchased a few weeks ago. Can I go ahead and continue reloading with the new batch of CFE Pistol as I was with the older batch or do I have to test the new batch and work up a load again?

In other words I'm currently using 5.3 grains of CFE Pistol powder for 124 grain 9MM and 6.3 grains of CFE pistol powder for 230 grain 45 acp. Once I start using the new batch can I continue using the same 5.3 and 6.3 grain loads or is it range test time again?

Also can I mix the two batches in powder measure and keep on reloading?
It makes good sense to test a few of each load with the new batch. 8Lbs is smart, will last a long time and eliminate frequent retesting.

I'm offered used cans of powder (and bricks of primers) all the time and always refuse

You just never know........

Powder and primer presently accounts to a mere 4 to 6 cents per round only, don't chance it.

Radio George
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for all the info guys. I agree that I'll keep on trucking with my 45 acp but I'll retest my 9mm loads.

Jim,

Thanks for letting me in on the fact that there is a magazine for us reloaders. Is it any good or just full of adds?
 

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You got good answers above. Thought I'd mention changing batches might be a good time to add (eg) 5 rounds a tad below and 5 rounds a tas above your current 45 load too. You might find one of those loads better now than just running with your current powder charge.
 

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Thanks for all the info guys. I agree that I'll keep on trucking with my 45 acp but I'll retest my 9mm loads.

Jim,

Thanks for letting me in on the fact that there is a magazine for us reloaders. Is it any good or just full of adds?

"Handloader" is a great magazine; it's got a lot of great information about all aspects of reloading.


Jim
 

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First, I would follow the above advice on reducing loads. Hesitant to give this bit of info but. I generally use one pound cans of powder and when I get down to the bottom of the powder hopper, maybe 60 grains or so, I take that powder and mix it with the new batch of powder if they have the same lot number.
 

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Excuse the silliness of my question. But...I am almost done with a 1LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that a friend of mine gave me ( I may get another 50 rounds of 9MM out of it). I have a new 8LB bottle of CFE Pistol powder that I purchased a few weeks ago. Can I go ahead and continue reloading with the new batch of CFE Pistol as I was with the older batch or do I have to test the new batch and work up a load again?

In other words I'm currently using 5.3 grains of CFE Pistol powder for 124 grain 9MM and 6.3 grains of CFE pistol powder for 230 grain 45 acp. Once I start using the new batch can I continue using the same 5.3 and 6.3 grain loads or is it range test time again?

Also can I mix the two batches in powder measure and keep on reloading?

rojas, this was recently posted on by our own Iowegan, and he and others have for years mixed in some new powder with the remaining old powder, during transition to a new batch, of course providing they are exactly the same powders.
I do it also.
 

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First, I would follow the above advice on reducing loads. Hesitant to give this bit of info but. I generally use one pound cans of powder and when I get down to the bottom of the powder hopper, maybe 60 grains or so, I take that powder and mix it with the new batch of powder if they have the same lot number.
+1
 

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Discussion Starter #11
rojas, this was recently posted on by our own Iowegan, and he and others have for years mixed in some new powder with the remaining old powder, during transition to a new batch, of course providing they are exactly the same powders.
I do it also.
Michael,

When you state "exactly the same powders" I'm assuming you mean mixing some of the old mixing CFE Pistol powder with some of the new CFE Pistol Powder? I'm 110% sure that this is what you mean But I just want to be sure.
 

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rojasj, I've been doing this reloading stuff for 50 years and have been blending old powder with new powder for at least 20 years. Although safety is a big concern, I will say this .... I have chronographed many many loads ... comparing different lots of the same brand of powder and have yet to find any significant difference. You can back off your loads a tad if you want but in my experience, it just isn't necessary. Granted, I have never blended old with new CFE powder but I can't see where the concept is any different with any brand of powder. Keep in mind, primers and powder have the strictest quality control of any product on the market so lot-to-lot variations are way over stated by the Internet Ninjas. The only times I have seen token differences in powder performance was Unique and 2400 when they were reformulated. Even then it was only a tenth of a grain difference from being the same velocity.

Using some common sense, why would you ever blend one brand of powder with another??? I just can't imagine such a poor practice that could potentially result in a catastrophe.
 

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rojasj, I've been doing this reloading stuff for 50 years and have been blending old powder with new powder for at least 20 years. Although safety is a big concern, I will say this .... I have chronographed many many loads ... comparing different lots of the same brand of powder and have yet to find any significant difference. You can back off your loads a tad if you want but in my experience, it just isn't necessary. Granted, I have never blended old with new CFE powder but I can't see where the concept is any different with any brand of powder. Keep in mind, primers and powder have the strictest quality control of any product on the market so lot-to-lot variations are way over stated by the Internet Ninjas. The only times I have seen token differences in powder performance was Unique and 2400 when they were reformulated. Even then it was only a tenth of a grain difference from being the same velocity.

Using some common sense, why would you ever blend one brand of powder with another??? I just can't imagine such a poor practice that could potentially result in a catastrophe.
I agree and feel that blending the same type of powder should be fine. As for your last statement "why would you ever blend one brand of powder with another???". I'm sure people out there have blended different powders together and learned the hard way that perhaps somethings should not be mixed.
 

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rojasj, I've been doing this reloading stuff for 50 years and have been blending old powder with new powder for at least 20 years. Although safety is a big concern, I will say this .... I have chronographed many many loads ... comparing different lots of the same brand of powder and have yet to find any significant difference. You can back off your loads a tad if you want but in my experience, it just isn't necessary. Granted, I have never blended old with new CFE powder but I can't see where the concept is any different with any brand of powder. Keep in mind, primers and powder have the strictest quality control of any product on the market so lot-to-lot variations are way over stated by the Internet Ninjas. The only times I have seen token differences in powder performance was Unique and 2400 when they were reformulated. Even then it was only a tenth of a grain difference from being the same velocity.

Using some common sense, why would you ever blend one brand of powder with another??? I just can't imagine such a poor practice that could potentially result in a catastrophe.
I have been doing the same for the same length of time and have been given the same advice by several knowledgeable people. Plus I have never had a pressure issue and I do load at or close to max loads.
 

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Safety: always reduce the charge by about 2% and work back up.
Reality: generally, there is no difference.
So, do you go with safety or generally?
I go with safety myself.
It is what the powder "distributors" say and what my manuals say.
I see no way that blending maybe 50 grains of the same powder into even 1# of new powder can be a problem. The powder you buy is a blend to begin with (they don't make a single batch of several tons of powder--they either blend different batches or make one continuous stream which can vary during process so it too needs to be blended).
I know that whether we made batches of a formulation or a continuous extrusion mix of a formulation, the final product still had to be blended.
First, we get that it doesn't matter much, if any, when you switch powder lot/bottle and then we get that mixing a very small amount of the same powder into a new bottle will cause an explosion.
 

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I load gentle loads...mid range in the "book" loads...so not near as "daring" to keep using my standard loads when I change to a new bottle (of the same exact powder)than if I were squashing primers and having to dig my empties out with a screwdriver and pliers.

I just finished up a couple hundred rounds of my "go to" 45acp...it's the same bullet..the same primer...brass is head stamp sorted...it runs nice and even on the chrono and it's pressures are about mid range for a 45acp...I don't step it back when I switch but if I were running at the top end I'd darn well step back just a tad to make certain...also if I were loading say a .40 with 180 grain bullets (and I don't load any .40..just too touchy for me) I'd be backing off each time I switched any component..high pressure loads like the .40 sort of give me the willies.
 

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I wonder how many people actually chronograph test loads from a new batch of powder? Very few, I suspect. I actually did this many times until I was finally convinced ... there's not a lick of difference. Think of this ... if powder varied as much as some people think .... why do reloading manuals specify a max charge? Further, when older powder is blended with new powder ...... maybe a couple hundred grains or less with a jar of 7000 grains, there's just no way it's going to make a notable change in burn rate.

Yes, safety is of paramount importance so if you refuse to blend older powder with newer powder, no one can fault you. Also if you believe there is a significant burn rate difference from lot-to-lot, by all means, run a test batch over the chronograph. Again, no one can fault you. However if you apply some common sense and don't believe in the tooth fairy, maybe you can see why I no longer bother testing a new batch of powder and I do blend old with new and often load at the high end. I'm probably one of the most safety conscious hand loaders you have ever seen ... but I have also done enough testing to know my limits.
 

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Safety: always reduce the charge by about 2% and work back up.
Reality: generally, there is no difference.
So, do you go with safety or generally?
I go with safety myself.
It is what the powder "distributors" say and what my manuals say.
I see no way that blending maybe 50 grains of the same powder into even 1# of new powder can be a problem. The powder you buy is a blend to begin with (they don't make a single batch of several tons of powder--they either blend different batches or make one continuous stream which can vary during process so it too needs to be blended).
I know that whether we made batches of a formulation or a continuous extrusion mix of a formulation, the final product still had to be blended.
First, we get that it doesn't matter much, if any, when you switch powder lot/bottle and then we get that mixing a very small amount of the same powder into a new bottle will cause an explosion.
Ok, I'm an idiot. Lets say the charge is 5 grn. 2% is 0.1 grn. Which is within the +/- .1 grn accuracy of my digital scale. Call me dangerous, but somehow I cant see how that will make a difference. :confused:
 

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OhioBrian, Another idiot here with more math. Let's say you had a full pound of new powder (7000 grains) and blended it with 100 grains of the same type ... but it was very old and had deteriorated to 50% of it's burn rate. So we blend the two together and here's what we get ... a burn rate ratio of 7000:7050 or 99.3%. OK ... now a load of 6 grains would have to be increased by a whopping .042 grains to get the same velocity. A couple holes in this concept ... first, I doubt you would ever see modern smokeless powder deteriorate 50% ... likely it would go totally bad at about 80% of it's normal burn rate .... and that could take up to a century, depending on how the powder was stored. Next, I doubt if very many hand loaders have a scale accurate enough to measure to .042 grains .... most scales are +or- .1 grains. Last, as powder ages, it always burns slower ... never faster because the chemicals that make it burn are degraded. So the potential risk is just about zip, zero, nada, nothing.
 

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Last, as powder ages, it always burns slower ... never faster because the chemicals that make it burn are degraded. So the potential risk is just about zip, zero, nada, nothing.
This sounds logical and increases the safety margin, thanks.
 
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