What is the best pistol powder on the market for all-around general use? Let’s start the discussion by going over some powder basics.
Powders Are Not Interchangeable
As pretty much every reloader knows, smokeless powders are not interchangeable, and an improperly loaded round can put you at serious risk. Different brands may use the same numbers (for example, Hodgdon 4350 and IMR 4350), but they won’t be exactly the same. Before you get started, make sure you check the reloading data provided by your powder’s manufacturer to make sure you’re using the right powder for the rounds you’ll be using. Once you’re set on the burn rate, pay close attention to your metering to make sure every shot is consistent and safe.
For the purposes of our best all-around pistol powder selection, we’re going to highlight candidates that work well with a variety of bullets, but it’s worth keeping in mind that even the most versatile powders won’t work in every situation.
Best Smokeless Pistol Powders
When we talk about all-around smokeless pistol powder, we mean powder that can be used to produce good ammo for a variety of handguns. In addition to using quality cases, primers, and bullets, selecting the right powder will lead to the shot-to-shot consistency that target shooters are looking for.
One of the best all-around pistol powders is Winchester 231 smokeless powder. This premium ball powder is easy to measure and is perfect for a wide range of light to medium bullets.
If you’re loading magnum rounds, you might want to try a slow-burning powder like Hodgdon H110 or Accurate 5744, but for a 38, 380, 25 auto, and 9mm, Winchester 231 is always an excellent choice. A powder that deserves a place in every handgun reloader’s arsenal.
Winchester 231 powder is also clean-burning and has low muzzle flash.
Explore Your Pistol Powder Options Online
Powder Valley is proud to carry Winchester powder, as well as smokeless powder from leading brands like IMR, Alliant, Accurate, Norma, Vihtavuori, Hodgdon, RAMSHOT powder, and more, all at the lowest possible prices. Select a 1lb container and experiment with something new. If you like it, purchase an 8lb jug and save.
Reloaders can be very committed to their favorite brand of powder, and if something works for you, great. However, using a new powder could surprise you, even if you’ve been reloading for decades.
Whether you’re new to reloading or looking to experiment with a new type of powder, our wide-ranging selection of industry-leading brands gives you a bounty of high-quality options.