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9mm with HS-6 Best choice?

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  • #16
    I shoot IDPA locally and really look forward to matches. W231, WST and good old Bullseye are pretty popular here for 115 and 124 gr 9mm loads.
    Youll hear some serious action game shooters say these are too snappy or dirty or whatever, and they prefer some of the Vhit pistol powders, but these work well enough for me and those I shoot with.
    I play Choctaw bingo every Friday night.


    • #17
      I just read your post a again and saw that you're seeking target velocity loads, to which HS6 is a poor choice. This is why I run it, as I pretty much exclusively shoot / load full tilt self defense ammo.



      • #18
        No worries HBC, I do the same thing all too often. I can read something several times and miss things. Im a hands on kinda guy.
        That said, I have about 50 rds made with HS-6. Gives me enough to see how it goes from single shot to mag feed from 2 different pistols.
        Im basically trying to match the velocity of the factory ammo ive been using.
        If it doesnt work well at the velocity im looking for, and from the general consensus of the post, it probably won't. I can always load some JHP rds with it and go with a different powder.

        Chrono should be here Thursday so it will be a fun day learning to use it and seeing where these first loads come in at. As long as they cycle, Im calling it success for first loads.


        • #19
          Originally posted by 13 Papa View Post
          Getting ready to do my first reload and I chose to get my toes wet with 9mm. Im loading for target ammo. I will be firing it from a S&W M&P9 Shield SC or my Sig P320 full frame. 3.7" and 4.7" respectively. I shoot IDPA so 99% of my shooting is close range.

          CCI #500 sm pistol primers
          Hornady 115gr FMJ RN
          powder HS-6

          Referencing the Lyman 50th Ed reloading handbook and Hornady handbook 9th Ed.

          Hornady: 5.7-6.4 gr
          Lyman: 5.7-7.2 gr

          I did some research on HS-6, after I bought it, of course. Isnt that how you do it?
          I found several sources that state HS-6 doesn't burn well in lighter loads. Others claim it's the cats meow in a wide range of loads including 9mm.

          Between the jump in max load from my two sources, and mixed sentiments on the powder, I find myself feeling aprehensive. Whats the general consensus from the bench? Did I goof on powder choice?
          Not at all.
          To throw another perspective into the mix , Speer Reloading Manual #14 shows a starting load of 6.6 and a max. load of 7.4!
          What I do in an instance like this is average out all the highs and all the lows and start in the middle.
          I would start with 6.5 grains of HS-6 and if too powerful for your needs drop back a little. Don't go much below 5.7 . HS-6 is a slow powder and will not burn properly at low pressure/velocities, when you reach the lowest pressure that it will burn cleanly and consistently at and if still not in the "target" load you may want to switch to a faster burning target load friendly powder. Bullseye, Red Dot, AA#2...something in this range. I tried to use Unique in target loads for a while, it doesn't work....Bullseye does the trick.


          • #20
            If you're not satisfied with the HS-6 try some AA 5 or AA 7. I run 7.0 grains of AA 7 under 115 grain fmjs. It's a very nice recoiling middle of the road load for killing paper. If you want to knock down steel plates at 25 yards you'll need to go up closer to a max load around 7.5 grains. It also fills the case nicely so you cannot double charge without spilling excess powder.
            If it weren't for double standards, liberals would have no standards at all.

            "Ammo and really good friends are hard to find in a gunfight so I bring them with me" E. J. Owens


            • #21
              Since my last post I went out and shot up a box of 50 rounds 45 Auto that I had loaded up with HS-6. The results weren't too satisfying. Although the accuracy was ok at 7 yards, both of my 1911's started to jam up (a Remington mil-spec R1 and a Para Elite Commander with match barrel). 8 grains of HS-6 under a Rainier Ballistics 200 grain bullet. Previously I had shot this powder and noted some fouling, but I hadn't run alot of it through my pistols. This time, the powder fouling was nasty enough that the cartridges weren't chambering completely. I managed to get the ammunition shot up, and when I got home I stripped the pistols down to clean them. What a mess. It was like cleaning one of my BP rifles. Methinks the HS-6 will be relegated to revolver loads henceforth.
              Previously I had shot alot of different powders through both pistols, but the two that struck me as best was Titegroup and CFE Pistol. The HS-6 I had purchased several years ago when there was a shortage.
              The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

              H.L. Menken

              NRA Endowment
              US Navy Retired


              • #22
                8gr of HS6 is BELOW the 8.2gr start load @ Hodgdon for a .45, and that start load is only 14,000 CUP, load was probably only 12 or 13,000CUP.

                The top load of 9 grains is only 16,400CUP, .45 Auto is an 18,000CUP cartridge.

                No wonder it was like trying to burn charcoal.

                Once again,,, HS6 is not a "download" powder, not a good one anyhow.


                • #23
                  I find that Hs6 is rarely better than Accurate #5 for but can be. #5 is pretty consitent in performance for me. It burns very cleanly and meters easily. That being said... in some 44 special loads using 6.5 grains of #5 I was getting some unburned powder.. this is a very light load tho and when you get to 7 grains it burns very cleanly. For 45 acp I use 8.0 for the 230 cast and a bit more for the 200 cast bullets with really good results.