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Reloading Low Power Rifle Rounds

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Pianoman, Apr 20, 2011.

  1. Pianoman

    Pianoman Me&glockchica

    Apr 16, 2002
    Harrisonburg, VA
    Hey guys, my father-in-law is looking into reloading some low power rounds for his .35 Remington. He was talking about wanting to get some sort of material to stick in the shell to keep all the powder down right in front of the primer. He was saying that it's inert and it would just disentigrate when fired. Do any of you know what it is he's looking for and possibly where to find them. Is it even necessary? Just thinking about it makes me think it's not necessary, but he would get a very consistent burn if he did use something to hold all the powder in place. What say you? Thanks in advance.

  2. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    Using inert fillers is common fare when loading black powder revolvers or black powder cartridges when a reduced load or a blank is called for since black powder must be compressed for proper ignition. I regularly use cream of wheat or instant grits although many shooters use kapok with very good results.

    Unless your FIL is planning on using an exceptionally low charge with a powder that is position sensitive there's probably no need for a filler.

    Be aware that a drastically reduced powder charge carries with it the risk of the primer ignition bridging the powder and causing a detonation of the powder rather than a controlled burn which can produce dangerous, even destructive pressures.

    Irrespective of caliber they should always be loaded within their minimum and maximum limitations. In lieu of that go to either a smaller or larger caliber.


  3. XDRoX


    Jan 24, 2009
    San Diego
    You could also use Trail Boss.
  4. Pianoman

    Pianoman Me&glockchica

    Apr 16, 2002
    Harrisonburg, VA
    Thanks Jack! My FIL likes the idea of going to the range only to make it smell like breakfast! I appreciate the warning as my FIL said he hadn't thought of that but that it makes sense. He's on the computer now looking at what reloader to buy. This will be fun!

  5. sootfactor


    Mar 30, 2011
    +1 ON THE DANGERS OF LOW POWDER. Years ago, before Clinton, when we could still go shooting at the National Grass Lands, went shooting with some friends, one of whom had a pre 70 winchester 30-30. He says "some of these are handloads, let me know what you think of them."

    First round, normal. Second round pokes my shoulder really good. Go to chamber another round and the operating lever won't move.

    Bowed receiver, ringed barrel.

    "But I don't understand, I loaded em real lite so it wouldn't kick as much."

    Last time I ever shot anything of his.
  6. barstoolguru

    barstoolguru texas proud

    Jan 10, 2011
    dallas, tx
    you chance the barrel blowing up. instead of pushing the bullet down the barrel it acts more like dynamite and swells up thus blowing the breach apart. if he can't handle the loads get a different rifle. powders are made to take up the full space in a shell. look in a reloading book for the lowest powder charge and that’s it. be safe not stupid
  7. That's the way to go for low power loads, try it with a 158 grain SWC for a light plinking load. Make it perform like a 38 Special.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2011
  8. Pianoman

    Pianoman Me&glockchica

    Apr 16, 2002
    Harrisonburg, VA
    Thanks Tom for the recipe. I think he's going to try the trail boss to start. Thank you everyone for your help.

  9. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    Myth. Hercules and many other entities have tried and never been able to reproduce the mythical "detonation" in small arms.

    Double loads of fast powder WILL blow up a gun, but that would require human error, which no one ever wants to admit to.

    For the OP, just get a Lyman manual. They have lots of reduced loads for rifles using cast bullets.
  10. dudel


    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    While there are some powders that are NOT suitable for low power rifle loads; others are. Google "Gallery Loads".

    I use a very small amount of Unique in a .223 case under a 34gr projectile. I can shoot those out of the Contender (14" barrel) without ear protection. It's softer than a 22lr. Velocity is about 1200 fps, and very accurate out to 50 yrds. I'm working it down below subsonic.

    And no, it won't work in an AR platform.

    The book Propellant Profiles, has some data for some selected powders, which got me interested in this side of reloading.
  11. Try 12.1 grains of Trail Boss under a 158 grain SWC in the 35 Remington case.

    What is he going to be shooting them in? If it is a Marlin 336, some (2 of my 3) have problems cycling those SWC's through magazine. Test to see if it will cycle an empty case through the magazine to be sure.
  12. bush pilot

    bush pilot

    Jan 29, 2004
    Would you use instant grits for faster powders and slow cooking grits for slower powders?
  13. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

    Aug 4, 2008
    :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
  14. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    Aren't you two supposed to be at work or at least doing something constructive?

  15. TonyT


    Mar 14, 2009
    If you want to load reduced velocity loads then use the powders which were specifically designed for that purpose - SR-4759, XMP-5744 and for very mild loads Trail Boss.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2011