The woes of Unique

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The woes of Unique

Postby Justin2200 » Tue Jul 05, 2016 7:58 pm

So...I picked up all the stuff needed to reload .45 auto yesterday and set it up. I normally load 45 colt with TiteGroup and it meters incredibly well through my Lee auto disk. But I wanted to try the Unique, as I've heard it's an amazing pistol powder. Well...I found out no matter what I did, I could not get a consistent charge to throw. Lee's disk data for it is WAY off, but even switching out the disks didn't help stabilize the powder drops any.

So my question to ya'll is this: Is anyone using unique on a regular basis, and what is your preferred method for throwing consistent accurate charges?

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby Beiruty » Wed Jul 06, 2016 6:20 am

As advice, I gave up on all flake powders.

I tried CFE Pistol and Titegroup and those do meter like water.

Now, for what I heard, people would attache a kind a vibrabotor such as an old Power Gillette to the hopper. Try it an let us know if it helps
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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby LTUME1978 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 2:42 pm

How much are your variations?

I have used up all of my Unique from the 70's but it ran though my old RCBS powder throw just fine (used it for mid level loads for my 357 magnum). I use a lot of 700X now for my 45 ACP. It has huge flakes (like Unique) but throws fairly consistently through both my old RCBS throw and my Dillon throw on my 650. I have heard others have had problems with the Lee Powder throws. My friends that started with them gave up on them. Have you shot that ammo to see how accurate it is?

Some things I do to help get consistency with large flake powder. Fill the hopper then tap on the side with a wood dowel (gently) to help settle/consolidate the powder. Otherwise, it will take some time for the powder to consolidate, resulting in inconsistent charge weight for a while. Also, don't weigh each individual charge. Throw 10 charges in the pan then weigh that and find the average to see how consistent the throw is over time.

Another option is to use the Lee powder scoops. I know, sounds crude but I loaded with those for some time while in college as that is all I could afford and shot some might good groups using that Unique powder.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby bfm1851 » Mon Jul 11, 2016 1:44 pm

For what it's worth when I started reloading for 45acp I asked the people at my local gun shop what to start with. They all said use Titegroup and I have been using every since. Also use it for .40 and many other cartridges. True you need to be a little extra careful with Titegroup as there room for double charges. I use Unique also but mostly for 45 colt. I starting out use a rotary powder throw, then went to a Lee turret press with their powder drop. Titegroup worked well to +/- .1gr. I now have a RCBS weight master (?) and weight just about every charge I load. When I was using the lee disc powder throw I was weighting every 7 - 10 rounds just to be certain. Use lots of different powders now but still weigh most every round especially those big boys (454 and 460).

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby rotor » Mon Jul 11, 2016 1:56 pm

Never used Unique but I do use Lee equipment. Look into Lee Auto-Drum powder measure which I have found very easy to dial in a powder dose reliably. Not expensive and for me it has replaced the auto-disk.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby TXBO » Mon Jul 11, 2016 1:57 pm

bfm1851 wrote:For what it's worth when I started reloading for 45acp I asked the people at my local gun shop what to start with. They all said use Titegroup and I have been using every since. ....

Same here. I've been using Titegroup for over 15 years in my .45 ACP rounds. I understand the desire to try different loads but Titegroup is consistently a really good fit.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby ET-Ret » Wed Aug 17, 2016 3:50 pm

I hate to through cold water on this discussion. However 2 other fools and my self Bought 15 Keg of Unique in 1972
and split it in Dupont Film cans used in a fototypesetter they were free as they were sending 10 a day in to the trash.
I am still using some of my third and some other unique i have bought up over the years. 10 Gr. in a 44 mag wit 250 grain cast lino bullet works
evertime i pull the trigger. I have 2 old RCBS measures one setup with the small hole in the drum for pistol and the other with the
standard hole. Used as directed work just fine. How several years ago I had a squib in a 9mm plobaly due to d oing something stupid. I got picky and bought the small metal plates to put in the measure and its seems to let you get +/- .1 grain In checking you will find a lot of reloaders have
used Bullseye, Unique, 2400 over a long time and i think any thing else would be just personal preferance. Unique has been around a long Time.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby viking1000 » Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:39 am

I use a little dandy powder measure. I have about 20 different rotors. My favorite load for 45 is 6.0 grains of unique.with a 230 grain FMJ bullet I use a number 12 rotor 6 grains of unique for my 45 Auto and it is a fine load for my 44 Colt using Star Line brass, and a 200 grain round nose flat point. Star Line the only company that makes 44 colt brass.
I have never had a issue with Unique, Going on 35 years of use.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby rotor » Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:50 am

I will say it again, try the Lee Auto drum in place of the Lee auto disk.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby Bolton Strid » Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:12 am

Justin2200 wrote:So my question to ya'll is this: Is anyone using unique on a regular basis, and what is your preferred method for throwing consistent accurate charges?

I use a gently modified & deburred Redding BR-30 with a pistol chamber - NOT the "universal"/rifle chamber. As they say, it's all in the wrist - I leave the top off and go for a smooth stroke while charging a case. If I get something of a "catch" while throwing a charge, I just dump it back in the reservoir and hit it again. My variation can run around a tenth & under (mostly under), loading 6.2 grains with a factory OAL with FMJs. Some people use powder measure weight devices to get favored results, like these here
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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby BurtG » Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:24 am

6.0 grains of Unique, using a RCBS Little Dandy.

.45 Schofield brass in a Ruger 4 5/8 inch Blackhawk . 45 Colt.
Hornady 230 grain RN swaged bullet. 7 yards, 2 hand hold off hand.
B 27 target. Seems to be an ok load.
The point being this is the same powder charge as the .45 Auto load Viking1000 talked about, and was thrown using the
same RCBS type powder measure he uses.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby AF-Odin » Thu Aug 25, 2016 3:56 pm

Both my RCBS powder throw from the early 70s as well as my Dillon powder measures seem to handle Unique fairly well. Loads stay within 0.1 grains which is good enough for me. If I need it more precise than that I measure each load. However for plinking and 3-gun/steel challenge this is good enough. Wish I could find more Unique around Central Texas for a decent price.
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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby ireload2 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:06 am

The Lee measure is not too good for anything but ball powders.
I have burned up 2 lbs of Unique in a rifle 13 grains per load.
All were dispensed with a RCBS Little Dandy.
I started using Unique with a rotating drum measure in 1969.
I have always been happy with it.

One of my brothers and I cleaned out a Gibson's Discount store when it closed its doors.
We got a lot of Unique, Green Dot and Red Dot that we are still shooting 30 years later.
A lot of it is shot up in shot shells loaded with the crude charge bar bushings of MEC loaders.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby Richbirdhunter » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:54 am

I use unique often, I use it with my RCBS Chargemaster and I all use it with my Hornady AP press. I always get consistent charges
Disclaimer: Anything I state can not be applied to 100% of all situations. Sometimes it's ok to speak in general terms.

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Re: The woes of Unique

Postby mupepe » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:57 am

My Dillon 650 throws it spot on 90% of the time. I've never seen it throw more than .1 grain off. I've never tried it with the Lee discs though.

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