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If you could only own one type of gun powder, what would it be?

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Do to being cost effective, space of having too many different types of powders, SHTF etc.

What would be your one & only, if you had no other choice.

For me i'm thinking Blue Dot. I've used it to load shot gun shells, & for a lot or my revolvers.

So what is the one & only gun powder you could not live without?











If your not " Physically Fit ", then your just Food for the Zombies.LOL.

In GOD I Trust, Everyone else keep your hands where I can see them!

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that's a hard one I am upset with a number of companies that have failed to keep up with loading data for cast bullets.


had they It might be easier to choose one powder I am torn between Unique and Blue dot for pistol shotgun and cast bullet in rifle.


but for jacketed bullets it is hard to beat any one of these 3031 4198 4895 BLC2 4350 for loading .223 to 458 win mag.


if push come to shove I would go with 3031 for hi powered rifle with jacketed bullets.


So for sake of argument Unique if I could only have one and add 30301 if I could have 2

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OK, the one and only I could not live without - FFg black powder. All of my revolvers can use it, most of my rifles can use it, and I know how to make more of it. No "high power" stuff but then, a Sharps .50-90 has an effective range in the neighborhood of 1 mile, max range of over 3000 yards. For most things, that will do.

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Bringing this topic back from the dead! I couldn't live with just one - I reload too many calibers. However, If I had to choose just one for pistol, I'd go Bullseye, hands down. For rifle, that's a bit trickier, but probably IMR-4895 due to its versatility - I can load anything from .223 to .30-06 and expect decent results. 

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Some reloading information found in Lyman's reloading manual #48

Below is some valuable information I would copy and print it for your NOTEBOOK


C.E. Harris "The Load"


"Cat Sneezes" (loads) part 1

part 2 is here                 

part 3 here                     


in hard times people may need to have this information it is impossible to find if you do not know what your looking for in a search.


A lot of information can be dissected by using a loading manual burn rate chart and compare to what you have powders on either side of the chart should work within reason there is always some level of risk.


I as well like bullseye for pistol  Varget for rifle and blue dot for shotgun.

If I could only have 1 it would be unique I have loads for .410 up to 12ga good for most pistol loads and reduced rifle cast bullet loads for hunting medium game withing 100 yards.  Nothing is perfect some arms are finicky generally speaking all of these will do what they are meant to.


Remember a lot of information needs some baseline or specifics reduced loads are usually cast bullets or a buck shot gas checks or jackets can be stripped off and left in the barrel or a squib load may hang in the barrel before reloading and firing again a visual inspection of the barrel so it is clear IS A MUST !  Much of this information was garnered from desperate people in dire times who needed to put food on the table or starve as well as be ultra / as quiet while doing so.  be prepared to use / have a stainless or brass rod to knock out a projectile if it gets lodged a minor problem and rare if you load correctly as per instructions.

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Forgot to mention EVERYONE that has a weapon especially a rifle must have a version of lyman's reloading manual.

the reasoning is knowledge of exactly what you are usig how it works and variables so it is insight to how accuracy works.


For all wants and purposes I have seen a "native" squatting on a rock with no commercial  equipment loading a spent shell with home made hand items is this going to be sub MOA ammo probably not but to hunt defend and put food on the table at short range OH YEA.


being an advocate that a person needs to have a LEE set of hand dies about 30 bucks a mold to make lead bullets for your caliber and bullet weight pound of powder and 1K of proper primers.


Understand that a pound of powder is 7,000 grains divide that into the load you choose and that is how many you can make, example 7 grains makes 1,000 or 70 grains makes 100


You have to look it up and print but the BLUE GREEN RED "DOT" powders can load most anything IF you have the data so people need a cheat sheet  of all the loads for their arms.  I have a certain powder that uses 25 grains in a shotgun 13 grains in a rifle and 8 grains in a pistol all of specific calibers this is not a one load fits all, but you can find loads for most all calibers / gauges


Years ago I had a 7.5 French MAS I used the Cat Sneeze loads with and it was quiet better than a air rifle more powerful than a 22 short.

finding a shooter in a military rifle for cheap or is you have granddads old beater and want to have a plinking rifle the cat sneeze principle ought to work.

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I've never had great luck with the Lee kits, but I can understand their appeal for a BO situation. Great things to leave at BO locations with sealed containers of powder and primers if you can't have a full-blown press setup. 


I use Red Dot in .45 Colt with OK luck. I've heard that the "dot" powders are quite versatile for lots of different loads. Good call on Unique - 2400, too - for good all-around powders. It's one of my favorite .38/.357/.45 Colt powders.

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I am sure you Drew_Forge know this but for the drive by reader here goes.


I may need to explain that a set of LEE LOADER or classic dies only neck sizes in a rifle If you have different rifles in the same caliber this won't work.  Unless you keep the brass fired from each separate,  load and label for each specific rifle .


All chambers are different once fired your case wil be form fitted to that rifles chamber in a semi or auto BOTTLENECK case this is hit and miss as each case may have some differences leading to failure to chamber (bolt does not lock up)  In a bolt action,  a lever or single shot there are levering forces that assist the chambering of the shell / case.


here is a link that gives more information on this


Is this always true NO as sure as there are little green apples some one will have rifles that inexplicably will work.

Straight wall / tapered cases like 45-70 444 marlin 357 /38 spl etc etc are not bottle shaped are seldom an issue.


Dies unless stated that they only neck size full size the case to SAMMI specs  (Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers' Institute (SAAMI)  OK going a bit deeper there are SB or small base dies that size the case to the extraction groove dies that do not specify prbably do not.

The reasoning for all these different dies / types is for accuracy or to form cases back to SAMMI specs or to extend the life of the case 


Having an industry standard means that new factory ammo will chamber / seat in all arms in their respective correct caliber,  I placed the word correct in on purpose EXAMPLE:  a 38 auto is not 380 acp nor is it 38 special or colt AND NOT 38 SUPER IT IS THE SAME DIMENSIONALLY BUT MORE POWERFUL !!! Many times a person would ask for a caliber like 32 and you have to ask automatic or short or long.   Getting into the weeds but the reader should gather that each caliber can have different design cartridges for it.

"BACK IN THE DAY" There were arms that crossed centuries we even kept black powder and percussion caps etc and we had paper hull shotgun shells and some gauges like 12 still had some guns that chambered 2 1/2 shells and many gauges now you have to specially order.


With that in mind if a person owns a special or antiquated arm they need to have the components,  lots of shells for it or a way to alter / form existing reloading components to make their caliber or gauge ammo.


Back to ONE POWDER if a person has a semi auto along with a shotgun or pistol this changes the dynamic 223 or 5.56 nato can be loaded with 2400 as can even 38 special or mag BUT all this has to be delineated before TSHTF there are times where one powder will never work so a person must decide beforehand which to invest in / consider and that could well happen.  If a person had a 9MM I am resonably sure that will not be as much of an issue as a 41 mag so in that case having a powder for your favorite or primary would be more advantageous IMHO.


Americans live in a world that is as near a fairy tale as can be imagined other countries limit or do not have the selection many places have to shim the primer pocket to use pistol or small rifle primers others have to convert berdan to boxer and some even use chamber adapters to fit shorter shells to "SIMILAR" calibers or pistol shells in a rifle then some have to cannibalize perfectly good ammo to create ammo they can use.  AS human beings we have a tendency to equate our ideas to our experience or environment  this is a reason why military revamps their training because this is not the age of horse calvary all tactics and equipment has generational changes that force a different mindset and equipment to remain even to superior BUT there are unconventional means that can work like the statue of liberty play it works because it is so antiquated it is unexpected or a big surprise.


If anything Adapt, Overcome, Improvise or just be chicken sh*t and hit them when they ain't looking there are people that if they have matches and a pencil they are dangerous but the real power is knowledge and that is not relevant to IQ or age IMHO.

There are "THINGS" that can be used in place of powder it all depends on what "WE" are trying to achieve and environment we are trying to exist survive or alter and then there is conscience dignity honor and  morality  because at some time or reason people will have to decide to follow rules or eat defend resist or muddle through this is where any conversation of troubled times devolves to.


I mention this because we live in a time like no other no one can hide PERIOD technology is that good either LIDAR thermal  time-stamping drones the size of a matchbox translucent a motor you have to use a microscope to see

echo location sonar radar listening station satellite ground sensors laser audio  magnetic field your cell phone cameras the size of a grain of rice computers digital facial recognition examination software and this is what is on top of the box once you see in that it gets real interesting.   the only restraint IMHO is that we are irreplaceable for the moment.  I like mental gymnastics it's fun --- and I could tell everyone a bedtime story --- but I do not want to scare the grownups.

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Not gonna happen. No pistol powder is worth a hoot in a defensive rifle cartridge (worthy of the name, much less in a big game rifle.) and no rifle powder is worth a hoot in a ccw pistol. So you might cut it to 2 powders, but you're not going to get it down to 1. Why bother with such "thinking"? You aint gonna be carrying any powder, components, reloading gear anyway. If you've got a setup to reload, why can't you have 2 or more canisters of powder?

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