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Discussion Starter #1
Winchester is selling its “780 Supreme” powder to reloaders. This is the same powder they use in their factory Supreme line of ammunition. Hodgdon distributes the powder. You can find loads at this link: http://data.hodgdon.com/cartridge_load.asp

A few of you might recall back in about 1960 WW was selling 780BR to loaders. In a few years they dropped that number and started selling WW785 Ball powder. I spent a lot of time and effort developing loads with WW785 and burn some gas going to the range. Using Hornady data I developed my favorite load with the 140 BTSP. After finding my dream load I bought a few cans of it. But I was very foolish; I should have bought an 8-pound keg. Hodgdon sold the same powder labeled as H450. Loading data was a little different because of different lot numbers. Winchester abandons the production of WW785 and Hodgdon had to drop H450. This created a lot of disappointed loaders out there.

Then Winchester came out with WMR. WMR is another Winchester Ball powder. It flows nice and produces consistent, accurate, top velocity loads in the .270 Winchester. I started to test loads for the 6.5X55 with it but then decided to reserve it for the .270. Winchester had dropped WMR and the traditional 140-grain Silvertip boattail for a new generation plastic tip bullet.

A hint, if you develop loads with WW780 Supreme, and if you like it buy an 8-pound keg. Because it may not be produced five years down the line. The claim is that Ball powders have an unlimited shelve life. I like ball powders because they flow nice in the reloading process.

I also know that old stick powder surplus 4831/H4831 has produced good accurate loads for me for over 40-years. And the goal of WW slow burning powders has been to duplicate H4831 burning rate or to be “slightly” slower. WW785 was slightly slower and idea for the .280 Remington, .270 Winchester, 243 Winchester, 6 MM Remington along with a number of other calibers.

Reloading is a long-term investment for me. Back in the early years I could load up some ammunition, walk a few hundred yards and test fire it. Those original loads are some of my favorites. Now days I load up a number of five round lots with different increments of powder and make a long trip to the range. With travel time my range day maybe 10-12 hours. I do it for enjoyment, but I also consider it an investment in future hunting trips, time, materials, and travel cost.

In my case I look for a slow burning powder that will maximize the .270 Winchester, 7MM Remington Magnum, and the .243 Winchester. And hopefully it will work with the In-laws chosen calibers. I realize that there are a number of powders out there that fit the niche. But I do not want to experiment with a number of miscellaneous powders, because of storage issues. In fact I have decided to load for target practice a number of rounds to dispose of some powder the fun way and some left over bullets from earlier times. With the cost of components I will still benefit from my investments.
 

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Siskiyou,
Boy you must be old, I didn`t start loading my own until 1965. ;D Over the years though I did learn to by powders that I like in larger volumes. I bought 48 lbs. of AA 2230-C a couple of years ago and am now thinking I should have got more. But then, I shoot alot of over run and surplus powders that are avalilable for only a short time, or that there is a fairly large change in burn rate from lot to lot so I always try to get at least an 8 lb. jug of things I like, and the ones I use the most of 25 to 50 lbs. is what I get when I can get a buy.
 

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I got several cans of 780 in a deal MANY years ago. It was fantastic in my 6mm rifle with 85 sierra HPBT's. It would generally shoot into one ragged hole off the bags at 100 yards. I was disapointed at the slow velocity I got with it though. I won many club shoots out to 200 yards and on calm days 300 yard targets had lots of x ring holes. I could get more speed but the group would open way to much for me.
 

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I'm sooo jealous! Some of you have got such a head start on me. Started reloading and found your favorite powders before I was born.
I guess that's why I really appreciate reading what you have to say.
Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Catfish: Old, I represent that remark!

I was fortunate to be raised in a dirt-poor cowtown. But the town was rich with hunters, and many of them reloaded their own ammunition. And I learned a few good lessons from them. A couple of them traveled the West Coast taking part in organized shoots. And after opening day they always had bucks hanging in the garage. I learned a few lessons when visiting their reloading bench. One of them was loading Hornady 165 grain bullets for his 30-06 and he was using IMR4064 powder. (IMR4350 did not come on the market until years later.)

A lot of others where loading just about everything with surplus 4895. But one day a miracle occurred. A reloader in another town got a 55-gallon drum of surplus 4831(later to be re-named H4831 for you youngsters.) The word was that you could get some for about .25-cents a pound if you supplied your own plastic jug. Yeah, plastic jugs were new then, most things came in glass, or metal containers. A brother bought two jugs of 4831 and gave one to me. I replaced the jug with new one-quart paint cans. But my mistake was not buying a couple more jugs of 4831. Twenty years later when the word hit the streets that the supply of surplus 4831 was drying up I kicked myself. Hodgdon came up with newly manufactured 4831 made in Scotland, and labeled it H4831. H4831 and IMR4831 are not the same.

I blame Hornady for me looking at another slow burning powder for the .270. When Hornady came out with their .277, 140 grain BTSP I felt that it might be what I was looking for. With careful loading techniques, starting low and increasing the weight of the charge I found that I needed to back off before reaching the publish maximum. The final load resulted in dead deer.

That is where WW785 came on board. I had picked up a couple cans of it and loaded some 130-grain Hornady bullets with it. It was a successful load, and I collected deer and antelope with it. But I wanted to improve my 140-grain load and WW785 was the answer. I worked the load up in careful increments, tested in 90-degree temperatures at 1900-foot elevation and then tested at 6700-foot elevation in cooler temperatures. The load performs great at both elevations, and proved to be accurate out of my Savage 110 and a Remington 700. In final analysis it had an edge in accuracy over H4831 in the selected loading. The effort took a fair amount of time over a six-month period. I picked up a couple more one-pound cans but never seen an 8-pound keg on in a shop. When I got the word it had been discontinued I was able to find one more one pound can. What I did right was I had bought a couple of hundred pieces of brass and loaded them.

As catfish says I am getting old, and carefully managed I have a lifetime supply for hunting purposes.

But I would like to try a Winchester-Western powder without being abandoned like they did with WW785 and WMR(Winchester Magnum Rifle.) Is the new Supreme 780 my long sought out answer for a WW785 replacement? With a reliable company like Hodgdon becoming the distributor for Winchester-Western powders will reloaders have a dependable long-term supply?

Then the question comes up, what is a dependable long-term supply of a given reloading powder. There are more brands of powder on the market today then there was fifty years ago. But we have seen brands come and go over the years.

I have always considered reloading a serious activity. Rather then slap some loads together, and then going bang-bang. I rather load a number of increasing increments until I find what I want, and it is safe. I want a near maximum load that will not lock up my rifle out hunting in hot weather and still go bang in sub freezing weather.

After the problems in the 60’s with surplus 4895 reloaders became concerned with powder shelf life. I know of a number of loaders that discarded surplus 4895.

But you are right, instead of looking twenty years out; I need to be looking ten years out.
 

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They also introduced and then discontinued WXR Magnum Rifle powder after WMR. I still have about 13 pounds of WMR which works well in my 280 Rem AI.
 
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