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Good morning,
A kind gent at Sixgunner.com suggested I come over here and ask this question. So here goes...
I need information on the durability of this little revolver with standard pressure loads.
Wife is ready to start some extended training with a Colt Agent that's in very good condition. We intend to shoot maybe 1,000 rounds total in the next 6 months - year.
I'm reloading the training ammo and can control the variables. We've chosen a Laser-Cast 158 gr RN FP as the bullet, and will use it for all the training so that we get good at using the speed loader with that bullet shape. We intend to load to full pressure only for the last 100 rds for final recoil familiarization training.
Question: what would be a safe, low pressure/reduced load that would keep from battering this light revolver during the training?
Avoiding damaging this revolver is the issue, not avoiding recoil. So, if the frame et al will take it, I'll load it full-up for the entire course of training.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Bruce
 

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4.0 grains of WW-231 with a 158 grain bullet is a load that I have used for years when teaching first-time women shooters the basics. It chronographs at about 550 fps. Recoil and muzzle blast are very mild, the load is accurate, and it still shoots to point of aim at 25 yards. Unique is a great powder for moderate-to-full power loads, but it burns very inconsistently with reduced loads. In fact, I have on several occasions had reduced loads with Unique lock up the action on a S&W revolver because so much unburned powder was being flung into the mechanism.
 

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4.0 grains of WW-231 with a 158 grain bullet is a load that I have used for years when teaching first-time women shooters the basics. It chronographs at about 550 fps. Recoil and muzzle blast are very mild, the load is accurate, and it still shoots to point of aim at 25 yards. Unique is a great powder for moderate-to-full power loads, but it burns very inconsistently with reduced loads. In fact, I have on several occasions had reduced loads with Unique lock up the action on a S&W revolver because so much unburned powder was being flung into the mechanism.
 

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The aluminum Colt's are NOT as delicate as some people think.

The Cobra and Agent with the shrouded barrel were factory rated for up to 1500 rounds of +P ammo.
The older "skinny" barrel Colt's weren't rated for +P, but will last a LOOOOOONG time with standard loads.

Just to save on wear and tear, I would do the practicing with a good "Mid-range" load.

Usually, these Mid-range loads were used by target shooter's because they had low recoil, but more important, were more accurate than the high range loads.

I'd look in any good lead-bullet loading manual, and find a mid-range load for the 158 gr. bullet lead bullet. Remember, the lead bullet manuals are different than the standard jacketed bullet manuals listed loads.

I recommend picking a high bulk powder like Unique, since there is a HUGE amount of loading data for these older powders.

Most gun shops also sell loading manuals, so I'd just "browse" through a lead bullet manual and write down a load for the bullet and powder you want to use.
 
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