Rainier "Hex" plated HP expansion?


January 6, 2006, 07:35 AM
I'm just curious if it's unreasonable for me to expect Rainier's 230gr "hex" HPs to expand if pushed no faster than 850 FPS. I cannot find a lick of data on Rainier Hex HPs and expansion.

I like the price ($50/500) and love the idea of extensive range time with what happens to be a chosen defensive HP as well.

I'm buying some goodies for my new Lee 4-hole turret press and decided to start loading fodder for both my Kimber and RIA 1911.
I'd love any feedback I can get before tossing this item in with my next Natchez order.

Thanks in advance!

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January 6, 2006, 10:15 AM
I have to say I would not depend on a cheap plated bullet as a defensive load, but that is just me. Obviously you made up your mind on carrying reloads for self defense, so I won't hash that one again. Have you looked at some of the less expensive top bullets, like Speer Gold Dots or the ones I am wring out right now, the Hornady XTPs? Good stuff, not that expensive, and designed from the ground up as a defensive bullet.
If you are dead set on Ranier, sorry, all I loaded was thier FMP, and they were pretty good range bullets in 9mm. Also,you might want to push that speed up a bit, as for most, the threshold of expansion is right aound 1000 FPS, IIRC.

January 6, 2006, 04:41 PM
:D I have been waiting for someone to ask about this for a long time. We did quite an extensive review of Rainer's and Berry's plated bullets in both TMJ and TMJ-HP design for expansion. As would be expected the FP profile bullets did expand slightly and more often than thie true jacketed counterparts, the HP designs had a failure rate close to the same that was seen with Winchester and Remington's standard HP designs (less than 1%). For comparison Remington GS, Winchester ST, Speer GD, and Hornady XTP have a failure rate of less than 0.5%. Failure being less than 20% expansion or over expansion and seperation (not petal loss of 1 or 2, but complete petal loss or the over pushed inside out expansion). The plated bullets tended not to expand in the traditional sense of opening up, but they look more like a smashed "hammer head" like the EFMJ bullets. In short they work great.

January 7, 2006, 01:54 AM
Thanks for the info. When it comes to CCW, I'll still be using my K9 on a diet of Winchester 147gr Rangers.

Since I'm new to reloading, I decided to focus on only one caliber and figured I'd realize the most savings by reloading the .45acp (since I've found myself taking my 1911s to the range often these days).
I thought it would be nice to load a standard that can be used for both range work and defense. Obviously no one projectile would coincidentally be found ideal for both, but I felt there had to be a relatively cheap HP that would serve both purposes well.

Thanks again!


January 9, 2006, 04:44 PM
I use a fairly snug taper crimp with my seating die on my .45acp and have no problems with Gold Dots(plated),Lead RN, or any of the jacketed HPs but the Rainier "hex" HPs crush at the soft nose. On the other hand I've never had a problem with their plated RN.

July 12, 2007, 06:33 PM
I just recently shot some 9mm 115 grain Rainier HPs into fine playground type sand. The impact velocity was about 1100 fps, the bullet expanded into a picture perfect mushroom of about .66 caliber, and penetrated about 11 inches. IMO ideal bullet performance. I know bad guys aren't made out of sand, but the bullet looked good :).

Just my .02,

July 12, 2007, 07:42 PM
They do OK on wet phone books too. I still have XTPs in my nightstand though.

July 12, 2007, 11:24 PM
I was totally unimpressed with Raniers 200 and 230 Gr. HP's. I would not depend on them for defensive loads and they did not shoot nearly as well as the Ranier 200 Gr. SWC which is VERY accurate. This Ranier bullet is the only one I will use for .45 anymore. I shoot Berry's other than this one Ranier in .45 ACP.

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