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Posted: 7/22/2008 12:41:23 PM EDT
Have a Gold Cup National Match 70 series and would like to buy some ammo for practrice. I would appreciate hearing members opinions on their "go to" practice ammo including which ammo you feel is the best value for the money. hx,
Alwaysforward
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 12:50:36 PM EDT
Up until now, I've gone for cheap which around here is WWB or Blazer Brass from Walmart. the last time I bought the Winchester, it was $30/100 or thereabouts. I think some of the big chains (Cabellas, etal.) sell bulk ammo cheaper, but with gas and/or postage it's not worth it. I've recently started reloading, and that makes thngs a little cheaper. I use a 16# recoil spring in the GCNM with the factory blasting ammo and it works fine, as well as with the wuzzy reloads. The round nosed ammo doesn't make very neat holes in paper targets.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 12:51:48 PM EDT
For the price of a few hundred rounds of ammo, you could start reloading your own to your own specs. That is the only way I can afford to shoot about 10,000 rounds per year which is up greatly from a few hundred per year.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 1:59:44 PM EDT
Thanks for your thoughts. Much appreciated
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 2:03:44 PM EDT
Thanks for your response. I havent really spent any tim eresearching the reloading route - always thought it would be time intensive. Coudl you help me understand the per round costs of reloading and the time one might need to load 500 rounds?
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 2:45:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By alwaysforward:
Thanks for your response. I havent really spent any tim eresearching the reloading route - always thought it would be time intensive. Coudl you help me understand the per round costs of reloading and the time one might need to load 500 rounds?


There are lots of assumptions to be made in answering your question. For more detailed discussion, suggest you visit the reloading forum at 1911forum.com. In very general terms, for an investment of $5-600 or more, you can reload 3-400 rds an hour. Depending on how you buy components--powder, bullets, primers, etc--you can reload for about half of the cost of factory ammo, with the benefit that you can tailor your loads to your specific purpose--practice, competition, etc. If you buy smaller quantities of components, your savings will be somewhat less. This pretty much assumes that you get the brass for free by scrounging and dumpster diving.

For a lessor investment (say $200), you can buy much simpler equipment, but your loading rate will go down signficantly to 100 rds/hr or less. If you don't think you'd get any enjoyment out of the reloading process itself, you'd best think twice about making the investment. The equipment takes up signficant space, and the components have to be stored and handled properly, although the latter isn't too big a deal.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 3:03:22 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 3:03:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By alwaysforward:
Thanks for your response. I havent really spent any tim eresearching the reloading route - always thought it would be time intensive. Coudl you help me understand the per round costs of reloading and the time one might need to load 500 rounds?



gonna depend on the style of reloading press--single stage, turret, or progressive.

The single stage is a long, tedious process. This is what I use, and I got it as a complete beginner's kit. (Lee Anniversary Kit--cost me less than $100 for everything needed to roll my own .45 ACP, and now I do .308 and .223 as well) It takes me about 2 hrs to make 150 rds, but I know that every round made is basically match grade. You have to change out the dies for every operation. (size/decap, prime, flare/fill, seat, crimp. I generally do groups of 150 for each operation so I don't have to keep changing out the dies) It's slow, but on the plus side, you have complete control over every step in the process.

The turret type is similar, except that you turn the turret to the next operation instead of having to unscrew and replace the die. It's quite a bit faster than the single stage, and you get a complete round after 4 pulls of the lever instead of having a bunch of partially completed brass waiting to get tipped over. These are about twice the price of the single stage.

The progressive is the fastest by far, but (arguably) the most error prone....gotta watch your primers, brass, and powder feed. It's easy to get into a rhythm and space out, and continue pulling the lever after the powder or primer feed runs empty. Every pull of the lever creates one complete round. These are the most expensive. I don't know the prices, but google Dillon Precision. **every KaBoom I've personally witnessed (5) were double charged, loaded on a Dillon 550....by different people.

At the last gun show for a little less than $200, I bought

1000 230gr FMJ
2000 CCI primers
2 lbs of Accurate Arms #5 powder (enough powder for about 5000 .45 ACP)


Between what I've saved from my Blazer Brass/WWB and what I've scrounged at the club, I have enough brass to last me several years of shooting. (If I shoot apprx 5000/year, I won't run out of brass until I'm too old to shoot--I have seven 5 gal buckets full of once fired brass--I got it from newbies at the range who didn't want to rake up their brass, or I already paid for it when I bought the factory ammo)


So....counting free brass, and that I've already paid for the reloading equipment.....1000 rds of very consistent, nearly match grade ammo costs me about 8 hrs of my time, and less than 500 rds of crappy steel cased Wolf costs. I could cut this cost in half by molding my own projectiles, but I really don't want to add anything more to the effort.


**there's people here who like reloading as much as shooting.....for me, it's a chore that I have to do so that I can enjoy shooting. I stick to very basic, simple recipes directly from the powder manufacturer. I use 8 grains of AA #5 simply because it meters well, and it's a high volume powder. I CAN'T double a powder charge and still seat the bullet because it fills up so much of the case. (down side to this is that a pound of powder doesn't go nearly as far as a pound of a low volume powder)
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 3:30:46 PM EDT
Thanks for the details on reloading - as a result, it doesnt sound like relaoding would be my first choice - hinking.gif

so...i should probably focus the on the chain on my original question: what do teh members use as their "go to" ammo for practice? Thanks again for your thoughts.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 4:01:08 PM EDT

Originally Posted By alwaysforward:
Thanks for the details on reloading - as a result, it doesnt sound like relaoding would be my first choice -

so...i should probably focus the on the chain on my original question: what do teh members use as their "go to" ammo for practice? Thanks again for your thoughts.


Sounds like a reasonable choice. Walmart remains as the easy choice for "cheap" ammo. Winchester white box or Blazer, either aluminum or brass case, will be about $30/100 but the price keeps escalating. There are cheaper brands like Wolf and others, but don't know about the steel cases that some of them use, and the possible affects on the pistol extractor. Probably OK, but I'll stick to brass and aluminum-cased ammo.

Your S70 GCNM should be fine with factory blasting ammo assuming you have a good 16# recoil spring. Earlier vintage NMs were intentionally lightened by machining material from the slide and urban legend has it that these are prone to cracking with normal factory ammo. Series 70 and newer don't have this issue.

Suggestion: Keep your brass (the real brass, not aluminum). If the reloading bug should ever hit you'll be ready, and your reloading friends will appreciate the brass donation. good luck.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 5:03:59 PM EDT
i go with what ever is cheaper, wwb, blaser brass, umc value packs etc. normally whatever i can get a good deal on, or the best deal at the time atleast. they are all about the same accurcy wise, which has been the case for me in many handguns and different calibers of all the above. also i shoot alot of lead rounds from ultramax and have nothing but great things to say about them.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 6:15:41 PM EDT
thx - very helpful
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 6:47:06 PM EDT
My practice rnds are my reloads. I just do it on a single stage, but I can do up to 150 rnds an hour, start to finish. I started out with .45ACP, good caliber to start with, relatively forgiving.

Factory, I'd say WWB, Fed American Eagle, or Sellier & Bellot. Haven't bought any in a while, though, I look at the prices just to smile--reload, you'll ultimately be paying less than half for your ammo. I do.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 9:23:52 PM EDT
I've used Blazer AL for years. Ne'er a problem. It could be cheaper elsewhere, but I've been buying it reasonably at Natchez in Chattanooga.
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