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Discussion Starter #1
Some years ago I settled on Hodgdon's H-450 as my choice for full power loads in the 6.5x55. I recently went looking for another can of the stuff only to find it is no longer available. IMR-4350 seems very close in terms of charge weight and velocity but I like the ease of measuring with ball powders. Is there a spherical powder which is close to H-450 or IMR-4350?
 

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To my knowledge there is nothing that matches H450 and that's a shame as I really liked that powder. It was a ball powder that metered well and gave excellent accuracy and good velocity in the guns I tried it in.

From a burning rate stand point I guess the various 4350s aren't terribly far off but they are logs in comparison and don't meter well nor for me give as good of accuracy or velocity. I miss that powder.
 

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I got some of that powder many, many years ago during a promotion the Hodgdon was offering. Used it all and liked it. I would say it is closer to the 4831's in burning rate. I never tried H-4831SC but maybe it would meter better than the regular H-4831 (now then, I've used several 8-pound kegs of that stuff). The other powder that might be a close rate to H-450 would be WC-852 (depending on lot #), but I don't think you will be able to find any of it anymore--I use mine sparingly. Good-luck...BCB...Just looked through some of my powders and AA#3100 might be able to be used also...BCB
 

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MagPro maybe the answer for H450/WW785 users who where left behind when they were discontinued.

Caliber 270 Winchester Case length Min: 2.520
Barrel: H&S precision 24" Max: 2.540
Case: Remington Cartridge length Min: 3.065
Primer: CCI 200 Max: 3.340
Bullet Bullet Powder Start Start Start Maximum Maximum Maximum
Make Weight Type Load Velocity Pressure Load Velocity Pressure AOL
Type Grains grains Fps kPsi Grains Fps kPsi inches
Sierra SPBT 130 Magpro 58.5 2919 48.6 65.0 3234 63.2 3.250
Hornady SPFB
Nosler Partition
Sierra SPBT Game King 150 Magpro 55.4 2725 50.9 61.5 3000 63.6 3.250
Hornady SPFB
Nosler Ballistic Tip
WARNING!! ALWAYS BEGIN LOADING AT THE RECOMMENDED MINIMUM OR "START" LOAD

From my experience with the .270 case WW785 burned a little slower and provide higher velocity then H4831. WMR, which replaced WW785, is another Winchester powder that has been discontinued.

Both H450 and WW785 where manufactured by Olin. The same powder was sold as WW785 Ball powder, and H450 was sold as Spherical powder. Ball was a trademark of Winchester-Western Powders (Olin) and could not be used by Hodgdon. Publish data will show a slight difference in loads I believe that is a variance between production lots.

I am unaware of any MagPro Data for the 6.5X55. Last spring I started working on 6.5 loads with WMR but quit because I wanted to save my supply to use with the .270, which is my primary hunting round. I easily achieve 2600 f.p.s.with a 140 grain bullet using H4831 in the 6.5 Swede and decided to be happy with that. While H4831 does not flowing smoothly as a ball/Spherical powder it is not an issue when I am loading close to a maximum load because I weigh each charge on a scale. I have not tried H4831SC.

You can find additional Mag Pro Data at this link.
http://www.accuratepowder.com/reloading.htm

Hodgdon describess H450 as having a burning rate similar to H4831.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the info guys. I misspoke when I said H-450 was similar to 4350, you're all quite right, it is closer to 4831, I was thinking of H-414, which I also use, and that is like 4350. I mostly run eased-off loads with RL-15 but it is a bit quick burning for top loads, especially with 140 grain or heavier bullets. Ah well, it gives me an excuse the shoot the 6.5 other than just to check last years zero and fire one shot at a deer. ;D But it does annoy me when I have worked up a load with a certain powder only to find I can't get any more and Winchester has done that to me several times now, if I had known H-450 was a Winchester powder I would never have started with it.
 

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I happen to like H414 also, but truth be known it is WW760. Just different lots and label
::)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Quite true. I said I also use H-414 but 414 has never been a favorite powder and if it goes I'll not cry. Actually, I've had a couple of very strange experiences with H-414. One time I was loading a .308 with 150 grain bullets and 414 powder. According to my Lyman #48 manual, a compressed load of 50 grains H-414 should produce only 37,500 psi and that is about all the powder you can get into the case. I loaded up five rounds each of 47, 48, 49 and 50 grains. The 48 grain load gave the smallest group so I then loaded the same twenty cases with 48 grains. Fired one group of five, made a sight adjustment and started on another group. On the third round of the second group I thought it sounded odd and I thought I noticed a bit of smoke. I glanced to the right, where the Winchester M-100 was tossing the brass, and saw one case with a gaping black hole where the primer had been. The rifle was OK but that case head was grossly distorted. Too much powder? The case won't hold too much. Wrong powder? I was dropping charges from a Lyman powder measure so I sure don't see how one case out of forty could have gotten a different powder.  Years later I had a similar experience with H-414 in a Remington 660 in .243. In that instance the cartridge could hold an overload but again I don't see how one round could have gotten more powder than the others. I have still continued to use H-414 but I do feel just a bit squeamish about it.
 

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I load H414 in two different cases. The 30-06 with 165-grain bullets, and the .243 with 80-grain bullets for coyotes and other varmints.

My powder measure is the Lyman 55, but my methods appear to be different. I still weigh each charge; H414 is so smooth flowing that I normally need not make an adjustment. From habit I also use the knocker on the side of measure to make sure all the powder has dropped so that I do not have any hanging for the next load.

While my selected charge weight is under maximum, I am close enough that I do not want to take a chance.

In all the years I have had one leaky primer, and that was caused by the way I handled the primer in the loading process. It was my fault, and it re-affirmed that I do not like blow back in the face.

I share your disappointment with the way the WW has handled its products. I invested a lot of time and effort developing safe 130 grain and 140 loads using Hornady bullets in a .270 Win. and WW785 powder. This involved trips to two different ranges, one at 1900-foot elevation and the other at 6700 feet. And shooting at temperatures ranging from the high 60’s to 92 degrees. The testing result in accurate, high velocity loads in two different .270 rifles. I was a happy camper, and then they pulled the rug out from under me and WW785 was dropped, and of course H450 was dropped at the same time. I am hoarding two pounds for hunting loads.

I had found that I like the Hornady 140 grain BTSP on deer. It is hard to beat success. I had initially tried H4831 with it. Loaded it up to the point I experienced a tight bolt, then backed off. This was under the published maximum. The resulting load was effective on deer. But I fell into the groove with WW785, it was easy to work with, it provided better overall accuracy, and higher velocity. I kick myself on a regular bases for not buying an 8-pound keg after investing the time effort.

My current efforts are with Winchester Magnum Rifle Powder (WMR). I originally purchased 8-pounds when I was working a tenuous work schedule, and was on the road a great deal of the time. WMR was on and off the market place so fast that it made my head spin. So rather then use it as fertilizer I started load development with it. It provides good velocity and outstanding accuracy. My current load provides slightly slower velocity then WW785 but I have not pushed it as far. I may get to that point this winter.

Winchester-Western (WW) use to warn that minimum loads of WW785 could be dangerous. I think that an issue with WW powders and the market place is what the military requirements for powder is at that time. If the military has a need for a slow burning powder in the H450 slot then we will see it on the commercial market. If the military does not need that powder, then it is likely we will not see it.
 
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