Sunday, January 18, 2015

Rainy Day Reading

I don't know what your weather is today, but ours is wet and cold. 40 maybe, steady rain, and everything looks brown and grey and muddy. A good day to stay inside by the fire, drink coffee, read, and maybe do some reloading later.

One of my older manuals is a Lyman Reloading Handbook from the 1970s. It was given to the guy who gave it to me. It has notes, some typed, taped into the pages on certain cartridge loads and powders. It speaks of a history of reloading and tells me something about the original owner, a man I never met.

I can't share that copy with you, but here, in PDF, is the same book. You can view it online or download it from the upper right of the grey frame once the page loads. I don't know that I would use the load data without verifying it elsewhere, powder formulations change over time and a lot of recipes have been dialed back in the newer books.


libertyman said...

I just opened up the Lyman Ideal Hand Book -- number 38, from 1951. It belonged to my friend's dad and he gave it to me years ago.
So just for sport, I looked up a certain load. Lyman in 1951 recommended 54.0 grains of a certain powder for a certain bullet weight. In 2015 the same powder, same caliber same bullet weight the MAX is 46.0 grains, starting at 43.0!
This book also lists some powders no longer available, like Dupont 5066. Incidentally, IMR 4350 was brand new in this edition as was P-5066.
They have a load using 4895 and say "Danger" and its pressure, then list 4 more above it with increasing pressure!
It is interesting to see what powders are still around though.

Glen Filthie said...

Mine is the 1989 Nosler book, hardbound. It's filled with notes on loads for guns long gone and evokes memories of friends that are also long gone.

This really is a sport you can enjoy throughout your entire life.

gruvinbass said...

The powder companies all say that loads have been reduced because they have better testing methods. I've always wondered, if that were true, then why are the loads universally reduced? Shouldn't there have been at least a few that could have heavier powder charges? At least one company (Hornady, I think, but I can't remember for sure) outright said that their charge weights have been lawyered by 10%

libertyman said...

Thanks for the link to the website - I looked at your manual, and if you hit the "PREV" button you see the Lyman number 38 reproduced there as well.

I seem to remember there were some loads in it in which they mixed two types of gunpowder, but I couldn't find them last night. I would say we have better powders now and certainly more of them than ever to chose from. Fewer companies though, as they have merged and sell the same powder under two names.

lee n. field said...

This is the 44th edition. Interesting. We're only at the 49th now. (I started on the 47th.)