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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking for the lightest safe load for full size 1911 in 45ACP even if I have to change the recoil spring. As far as performance goes all it needs to be is accurate and punch holes in paper.

I normally shoot 200 SWC's but I was thinking of playing with 185's and 155's.

Please post your load, what type of gun, and if you had to change the spring.
 

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Probably not the lightest .45acp load but has to be darn close. I never chrono'd it but it felt like maybe 700 to 750fps. Very light. I didn't test accuracy but seemed to be ok.

200gn Precision RNFP
3.6gn Clays
WLP
1.250" oal

I did not have to change springs and everything cycled fine through a 5" 1911 (can't remember which one/ones I used with those rounds) :)

As always, these are loads I ran in my gun/guns. Your results may vary.

Good luck,
Zack Phillips
Shooters Plus
 

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I was using 6.8g of unique
200g rainer plated flat point
cci large primer

The recoil seemed almost nonexistant when shooting from my 4.25" para.
 

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I've used:
185grain SWC over 4 grains of Red Dot (need to double check my manual on the grains of powder). This is the softest .45 load I've shot.

A guy I know told me he loads 2.8 grains of Bullseye over a 200grain SWC. This one is just strong enough to cycle the gun, according to him.

Both loads using standard springs.
 

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Back in my old Bullseye (competition) days, I shot a 185gr LSWC over 3.5gr Bullseye (powder) with a stock 16# recoil spring. It was very accurate and reasonably mild. I'd think you could easily go down to 3.0 gr Bullseye (or possibly 2.8gr as mentioned above) with a185gr bullet and get a much softer, but still pretty accurate load. That load might even work with a 16# spring, but I'd have a 14# spring handy, just in case.
 

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just to follow up on my earlier post.

I checked my records and yes, I did in fact load a 185 grainer with 4 grains of Red Dot. It actually happened by mistake. My standard Red Dot load for a 185 grain bullet is 5.4 or 5.7 grains, but for a 200 grainer I am supposed to use 4 grains. Well, I ran out of 200 grainers and switched to my 185 grain semiwadcutters and forgot to change the disk on the powder measure. (yes, I know I deserve a whoopin').

Anyway, when I got to the range I noticed right away that my loads were way milder than what I was used to. That's when I figured out what happened.
 

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I use 3.2 grains of Bullseye under 185 LSWC with Federal primers. Now this is a great load for my S&W 25 revolver and it works well in my Kimber Gold Match and STI Spartan. All with standard springs.

Nice target and bullseye load out to 25 yards. Past that I would probably increase the powder to about 3.6 grains or so. FWIW I also use the same load under a 200 LSWC.
 

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I have to download my 45acp due to back/shoulder problems. I weuld reccomend using NosIer 185grJHP & IMR 7OO-X powder. I worked hp a load for full size 1911 that clocks at just 775 fps. Very comfortable to shoot & very accurate (able to break 8 out of 8 clay targets at 35 yds.) I didn't have to change the springs or make any alterations.

NosIer 185gr JHP
4.9 gr of IMR 700-X
WLP primer
OAL Of 1.24
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks guys for all of the advice.

I tried Clays because that is what I usually use. For starters I put 3.5 grains behind a 185 grain LRN.

I let my 13 year old son shoot it through my Norinco and he shot a box of 50 without any issues. He said the recoil was soft and accuracy was good.

We were out shooting with a friend that has a S&W M&P 45ACP and I tried five in his gun and it ran without a hitch.
 

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Reduced load for fun shooting

I really enjoy and recommend 3.6g Clays with either 185, 200 or 230 grain bullets. With that Clays load, heavier bullets do not recoil worse than the lighter ones. In fact, the reduced velocity slows down the recoil to a 'roll' rather than a snap. 230g fmj at 1.250" oal chronographed at 645fps average.

With 230g bullets (lead or jacketed) 4.0 grains Titegroup also makes a smooth reduced-recoil round.
 
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