Shield .40 reloading - MP-Pistol Forum

Shield .40 reloading

This is a discussion on Shield .40 reloading within the MP Reloading forums, part of the Smith & Wesson MP Forum category; Hi all.....been a while since I stepped inside.....been on a bit of a rifle kick lately. I've been reloading for a while, but on an ...


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Old June 27th, 2015, 10:59 PM   #1
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Shield .40 reloading

Hi all.....been a while since I stepped inside.....been on a bit of a rifle kick lately.

I've been reloading for a while, but on an RCBS single stage. Sloooooow!!! So recently I bought a new Dillon RL 550 B progressive and am busy setting up tool heads for all my calibers. 9mm and 45 ACP are set up and now it's time to do the 40. I'm using the Hornady reloading manual.

For the .40 S&W Shield, I intend to work my way through a box of 500 Xtreme 180g plated RNFP bullets......but also load some premium hollow points for defensive loads. For general range sessions I'll use the flat point plated Xtreme's.

For handgun powder I have Power Pistol, Blue Dot, Bullseye and Unique to choose from.

Which powder do you folks like the best for your own loads and how many grains gets you the best results in general? I've read somewhere that it's best to not hit too high velocities with the 180r in the Shield and that 1100fps is really pushing it. So I intend to load not too hot......maybe around 900 to 950 fps. Does that sound about right? I know the correct plot is to load develop and start low and go up.......and that one should not get reloading data off the web necessarily.

I'm just curious what results you folks are having with your own loads.

Thanks.
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Old June 28th, 2015, 01:17 PM   #2
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My favorite powder for the 40 is Auto-Comp.

Edited to add: Bullseye works good in the 40 also.

Last edited by John R; June 28th, 2015 at 01:22 PM.
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Old June 28th, 2015, 03:54 PM   #3
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With the powder options you list, there is no question that Power Pistol (PP) should be your number 1 go to powder... Ive used it on 9,40,45 and 357 with delightful results.

GL,
EB
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Old June 28th, 2015, 05:58 PM   #4
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Thanks a ton folks. I went to my local reloading store today and got some goodies. Unfortunately he had no Power Pistol.....which I only have 1lb of.

However I was able to get a jug of Unique.

I guess what threw me is the Hornady manual does not even list Bullseye and Unique. Many people claim to have good results with these two reloading for .40S&W.

What I am nervous about is the stories of Shields blowing up and it always seems to be reloads that are blamed. So I want to load these 180Gr RNFP plated bullets low enough that they are safe in the small Shield......but also hot enough that I am getting complete ignition of the powder. Apparently some powders...like Bullseye I think.....prefer to be loaded on the hot side. I don't want to go there with the Shield.

So I'm planning on using Power Pistol at 6.4gr which should get me between 950 and 1000fps which I'm hoping will be a safe load. Hornady manual says 6.2gr =950fps and 6.6gr = 1000fps.
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Old June 28th, 2015, 06:06 PM   #5
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If you are weighing/measuring your powder drops, and they are like you want, it will not blow up... relax.

There is room in a 40 case to drop a double charge, in which case, you will blow yourself up.. more than likely.


Looks like you will be loading Unique... run what ya got!!

Your velocities look a bit high, most "factory" ammo "claim" 950 for 180gn FMJ, Ive loaded 40 to run 1100fps before, a weeee bit hot, and the accuracy went straight to shit. I currently load for 880-900fps with 180gn and accuracy is outstanding, its the pet load I run to shoot USPSA, if you dont have a chronograph, your just guessing.


Heres some videos of me testing my ETR7 powder, because its mostly an "unknown" powder with zero load data except for what came from the vendor:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3NjxFTpZOVY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNsalSI96Sg

GL, be safe, shoot straight-
EB


EB
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Old June 28th, 2015, 06:08 PM   #6
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Nobody can tell you what will be best for you. I can only give my experience.
For .40, Power Pistol or Unique will be best of those four. When Unique is accurate, it is VERY accurate (and, out to 50 yards, its indifference to metering does not show up on the target). It is also very "well behaved," which can be a GREAT property for a powder in .40.
Of the powders I have used, the most accurate (from start to mid-range has been AA5 (won't use AA5 much above mid-range in .40)--very accurate at all charge weights and bullet weights tested. If I had to shoot Bullseye competition with a .40, AA5 would be the powder I would use.
Silhouette is next best from start to near max, followed by True Blue.
Have not tested Blue Dot.
I don't use ANY powder faster than AA5 in .40. I have gotten a lot of pressure (felt recoil variations)/velocity variations with fast powders in .40 that I don't get with slower powders or in any other cartridge, so Bullseye would be a powder I wouldn't recommend; but, if I had to, loads would be kept LIGHT.
The only reason any one would recommend loading Bullseye hot is that it is "dirty" at low pressure--and this is EXACTLY the LAST thing any one should do with ANY .40S&W. Never saw it myself and never cared. I think powder "dirt" is the least important thing. I have fired whole seasons of IPSC and PPC with Unique and Bullseye without ever cleaning the gun and never had a problem.
If you want to load for action pistol minor PF, then a fast powder may be fine, but be careful.

Last edited by noylj; June 28th, 2015 at 06:13 PM.
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Old June 29th, 2015, 04:04 AM   #7
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I am another one who favors slow powders in 40 for a little extra safety. In my case I had a bunch of Longshot I had bought for shotgun and ended up trying it. I think the slower development of pressure is what makes sense. I also favor the 155g bullets because they leave some more room in the case further tempering the pressure spike. I also have pretty much quit worrying about the velocity performance of my reloads because they just end up getting used for blasting away at practice. I would pick a slow powder and load the starting load and see how you like it, I loaded many that were even a couple tenths under the starting load and they were fine.

And you will probably only get complete combustion on the fastest powders in a Shield and I would shy away from them for the reasons mentioned.

Also prepare to fall in love with your new Dillon
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Old June 29th, 2015, 06:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmc45414 View Post

Also prepare to fall in love with your new Dillon
I think I did already!!

Yes I have a Chrony and I'll shoot for those velocities eleven bravo. Thanks very much everyone.
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Old June 29th, 2015, 06:20 PM   #9
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Let us know your results...
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Old July 15th, 2015, 05:49 AM   #10
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Update

Okay, so while I did not Chrony my reloads because I was at a "stuffy" indoor range....... I feel my loads are too hot. I'm using 6.6gr of Power Pistol with a 180gr Xtreme plated flat point bullet.

Wow.........recoil is really stout and the muzzle flash is huge. Flipping fireball!!!!! I brought along some 180gr each of Winchester white box and Blazer Brass. The Win. ammo recoil is the stoutest of the two........with the Blazer feeling like 9mm +P..........but both way less than my loads. My loads also grouped bigger......although I did get one really good group. I was shooting at 10Y.

So........such a small gun/barrel, I'm not expecting good groups and also, I'm not very experienced with .40 S&W. This leads me to ask........are the two brands of factory ammo I tried, deliberately loaded "lighter"? In other words could my loads actually be closer to how .40 S&W should feel out such a small gun?

Also........is Power Pistol known for having a lot of flash.......again in a short barrel and loaded near hot?

I mean, I see flash with the commercial stuff but not like my loads. I'm wondering if it is an indicator of it being loaded too hot. I wish I could remember what powder I used to load my 6" Colt Trooper Mk V .357 Mag which I last took out over a year ago. I noticed a lot of flash there also and I think it was Power Pistol. I'll have to dig up my notes.

But for now this batch will have to wait until I can run them through my Chrony. Is there a velocity you guys like to get with a 180gr and the Shield? 1000fps or a bit less?

Thanks folks!
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Old July 23rd, 2015, 04:33 AM   #11
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Power Pistol is slow, the barrel is short, you are going to get flash. As discussed, I think the slower powder is safer in 40 and would stick with it. You could back down below the listed starting load, the light slide will function.
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Old July 23rd, 2015, 03:58 PM   #12
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCE24PAw8IU

PP in 45 and 357, minimal flash, load data in video, use at your own risk.

EB
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Old February 18th, 2016, 07:17 PM   #13
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8.2 gr. Longshot 155 gr. hornady xtp got me 1100 fps. 6.5 gr. Longshot 180 gr. extreme plated got me 900 fps.
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Old February 19th, 2016, 04:03 PM   #14
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I like powder that is small on drop so I can get the most out of a pound! Thats part of my selection process..

EB
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Old March 15th, 2016, 07:38 PM   #15
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If you can find BE-86, it is formulated like PP with flash suppressants. It is between PP and Unique in terms of burn rate. Other powders to consider are 800-X (meters terribly but works well), Herco, Winchester Super Field, 20/28 (you won't find pistol load data but use about 5% less weight than Unique). The double disadvantage of a short barrel is your load needs to be hotter to get the same muzzle velocity to that of a standard length pistol, but that leads to a bigger blast and recoil from a smaller handgun.

The good thing is at self defense ranges, you need only to hit center of mass to do the job and not a 3" bullseye at 25 yards.
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