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Blue Dot Warning

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by kazager, Jul 25, 2008.

  1. billy396


    Jun 28, 2007
    I've used Blue Dot and H110 for years and I love both of them. I used Blue Dot years ago when working up some very stout 110 grain 357 loads. I never had any real problems, other than some slightly flattened primers. I did get some very high velocity, wicked accurate rounds though. Even though I've never had any problem, I'll never use BD for 125 Gr. 357, due to this warning... even though it doesn't make any sense to me, I won't try to second guess the factory that made the powder.
  2. I believe that Alliant did this for one reason. Liabilty. You see, in the Speer Number 11 Reloading manual there is a 125 grain .357 magnum load listed as 16.3 grains of Blue Dot, 1602 FPS. Yes, you read that right! Here is my take, and BTW, the reason I have a #11 manual is because I have been loading for 30 years. I have a 4" Magna-Ported Colt Python that I actually worked up to the maximum load that they had in this manual. I paid $250 for it brand new. And I have about 400+ rounds dated 1989 on the tags that are loaded with 125 grain Remington JHP bullets. I've fired about 100 of them over the years. The other day I ran six by my chrony and here is what I got: Colt Python 4" 357 Magnum 125 Grain Remington JHP WW primer Blue Dot 16.3 max load Six shot string: 1544 1534 1570 1564 1572 1570 Average 1559 Deviation 38 FPS and there are very little if any actual overpressure signs. They eject fine, with just my thumb pressure and have a slight bulge at the base. The primers are a bit flattened out, but not more than I've seen factory ammo flattened out. Here is what I suspect. I believe that the investment case stainless steel cylinders on the Model 66 S&W revolvers may have been a problem. Since the walls are a bit thin for a .357 and since they are cast, I would be willing to make a good guess that some folks had a problem with that load that owned those S&W revolvers. I do not believe that a cast Model 28 or the forged Model 27 would be an issue, and I do not believe that the Colt Python would be an issue. However, any thin walled cylinder that was being used for .357 might have found it a bit HOT. I mean do you see my average velocity at 10 feet from the muzzle from a FOUR INCH revolver? And it was a very controllable round because of the light bullet. And did you notice that Alliant (used to be Hercules) is stating this for ONLY the 125 grain bullet. THEY WANT YOU TO AVOID USING THAT BULLET WITH THEIR POWDER because you MIGHT come across that data. As for the 41 magnum being totally removed from the equation? Makes no sense UNLESS Speer or someone else did a whole series of bullets with high Blue Dot loads and folks were having issues with their 41 mags. I don't know. I've never owned a .41 so I couldn't tell you because I've never loaded for it. As it stands, I suspect from the HUMONGOUS flash that accompanies the 16.3 grain load that a good bit of the powder is burning outside of the barrel of my Python. Yet it is EXTREMELY accurate. I work my loads up to the maximum for a particular pistol or revolver and have found that in many cases the older Speer books maximum is actually a maximum. The newer books are not. You can't tell me that 7.8 grains of SR 7625 behind a Remington 185 grain JHP in a .45 is a maximum load. It kicks like a .22 and has absolutely no, zilch, nada signs of pressure at all. I never even checked the speed on that load because it was so anemic. HOWEVER, by going up 2 tenths of a grain, at a time, I was able to get just under 1000 FPS average out of 8.5 grains! And it is quite accurate. I had 10 pounds of the powder lying around and a couple thousand brass and bullets and it didn't make sense to use another powder if I could make a load that would work. My only major gripe was that in an 8 shot string I had one 832 FPS load and a 1004 FPS load which made the spread 172 FPS! I was shooting at 50 feet and still kept the group in a 3" circle. The 8.5 grain load shows absolutely ZERO signs of pressure build up. The first thing everyone would see is the totally flattened primers and if you have a ported and polished .45 you will see the brass bulging into the ramp like they do on those old Mac 10 semi auto pistols with just normal loads.

  3. MrGlock21


    Apr 16, 2001
    North Texas
    I've used BD in 10mm and 454 with ok results. But I prefer AA#9
    fredj338 likes this.
  4. Is AA#9 a ball powder? I think the flake powders don't measure as accurately in the Dillion powder measures.
  5. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Glockoholic

    I've struggled to find a good place for Blue Dot, as it seemed that many loads just weren't very consistent. However I do think that in the warmer charges it gets better, maybe compressing it some helps, I don't know. I do know that 8.5gr of it will throw a 200gr JHP from a 6" .40 S&W at almost 1,200 fps with pretty good consistency.
  6. I think the major issue with it is good measuring. I've measured 10 in a row and seen what was thought to be set at 12 grains do 11.7-12.3
    231 has always been so close you couldn't tell it apart from one round to the next. If you look at the powder you can see why one would have a variation and the other wouldn't.
  7. SCmasterblaster

    SCmasterblaster Millennium Member

    Sep 24, 1999
    Hartford, Vermont
    I have been using BD off and on since 1978. Great propellant!
    Cwlongshot likes this.
  8. I just hate the way it meters.
  9. 100%. They don't want to be held liable because someone uses the load in a SW M60 which is basically a .38 with a bit better cylinder.
  10. Glockstok

    Glockstok Born Again

    May 5, 2006
    Southern Ohio
    I found a couple hundred rounds that are at least 10 years old in the back of my safe. They are 158 JHP mag primer and 11.0g of Blue Dot. When I loaded them they were considered safe. But now? What do you guys think? Are they safe?
  11. dougader


    Apr 17, 2004
    Have you fired them in your revolver previously? Do you still have that revolver?

    I'd say that if they were safe in your revolver before, they're still safe. But I wouldn't go out and shoot them in a S&W M60 5 -shot revolver, for example.

    I still have some of my old loads, too. I still shoot them in a GP100 and an old model Blackhawk.

    BTW, my old loads are:

    125 gr jhp/14.5 BD
    140 gr jhp/13.5 BD
    158 gr jhp/12.5 BD
    173 gr SWC/10.0 BD
  12. Rlee276


    Mar 27, 2015
    Southern VA
    Nice to know even tho I never had a problem with blue dot I load 10mm with it for a year or two . I can't even get it locally any more so now I use longshot
  13. Cwlongshot


    May 31, 2011
    I have been usin it since the very early 1980's. shotgun magnum pistol and 40/10MM. Never a issue. Load it pretty hot in the 10MM.

    I actually just bought another 5# can! Saturday!
    Taterhead likes this.
  14. Johnny10mm


    May 4, 2016
    ---- I am new to the idea of reloading and doing research I noticed you reload a variety of rounds and 10mm being one of them, I am in the process of doing research on the subject if you can roughly give me an example of how many rounds you can get out of one 5lbs of gunpowder I would greatly appreciate it. I am currently saving up for a dillon reloader the super 1050 model and I have bought the blue dot gun powder do to the fact it was under $100.00 for 5 lbs just to start building supplies from cheaply to the more expensive this includes 1000 large pistol primers and brass still not sure which brand or grain weight is a good target projectile. all this is to plan and set goals any help is greatly appreciated. do to the fact the 10mm round is so rare, and the glock 20 is my everyday carry.
  15. Turn4811


    Jan 31, 2014
    NE Atlanta
    I learned reloading from my dad in the 70's, Blue Dot was a staple for the .357, 9mm. and 45. I still use it for 9mm and occasionally 45.
  16. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    I'm not a huge fan of BD, just the muzzle flash alone, but I have never bought into the can use it here but not there. So it's ok in 357sig w/ 125gr bullet, smaller case for potentially higher pressures, but not ok in 357mag? Ok for 10mm, again, smaller case & potentially higher pressures, but not ok in 41mag? I know powders can do weird things in diff bore sizes but it just seems weird to say no here & yes there. I use it in 357sig some & 10mm, all full power loads. I also prefer AA#9 as a max effort powder though.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2016
  17. KIDCOP

    KIDCOP Rifle Master Millennium Member

    I use Blue Dot in my 357 Mag Pistol loads. If you value your pistol you will not use Speer 11 Blue Dot data. It is way too hot. Speer 11 starting load for a 140 gr Hp is the max load in a Sierra for example. Using 125 gr bullets in 357 with Blue Dot has been problematic for years and is nothing new. I found the accurate load in the sierra manual for a 140 gr Hp is pretty close to what I load already.

    Blue dot works pretty good in 9mm but it's been awhile since I've played with that. One of these days if I ever get done building my 38 Super 1911 I try Blue Dot when working up loads.
  18. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    Maybe it is your technique or equip?? I load BD on my 550B for 10mm. I can get +/- 0.1gr pretty uniformly. It might go 0.015gr for 10 throws. It is no worse than Unique in metering for me. I do prefer AA#9 in any app that I would use BD, better vel & accuracy w/ less blast & flash.
  19. KIDCOP

    KIDCOP Rifle Master Millennium Member

    An Update. I'm still using 12.4 grs of Blue Dot with a 140 gr HP with a standard small CCI pistol Primer. It shoots very well in my 6 inch 686. 4 inch 686 is a bit more snorty but it still shoots well. I'm not using Blue Dot for my Marlin Cowboy 2 which shoots 38/257. Here I'm using True Blue with 158's and knocking the heck out of silhouettes.