Which 9mm Plated Bullet Is Most Accurate?


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mineralman55
April 9, 2010, 11:12 AM
Just trying to get an idea from you reloaders of which of the plated 9mm bullets seem to have the "best" or most consistent accuracy, quality control, etc. I've been using Rainier 115 grain RN. My reloads with these have an accuracy on par with Winchester White Box 115 grain factory loads. Are Berry's, Missouri's etc. any more consistent? Or are the heavier bullets intrinsically more accurate?

I'm shooting a stock M&P9c. Loads are 4.0-4.4 gr Red Dot, CCI 500 primers, LOA 1.135".

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bds
April 9, 2010, 11:24 AM
I have done comparison tests with plated 125gr 9mm bullets using Winchester 115gr FMJ as my reference.

Out to 5-7 yards, Rainier, Berry's and another local manufacturer (I can't recall the name of) had similar shot groups.

Past 7 yards, plated bullet shot groups opened up more than FMJ, but that may be due to velocity difference partly. 10-15 yard shot groups came out with Rainier smallest, Berry's next (fairly close to Rainier) and third with much larger shot groups.

Based on PM from walkalong, I am thinking about doing a comparison test shootings between various FMJ/plated/lead bullets in 9mm/40S&W/45ACP during my next vacation. I will post my results with photos when I do.

loadedround
April 9, 2010, 11:33 AM
Mineralman: Pistols are a lot like rifles and each firearm's barrel has it's own likes and dislikes. It would be best to beg, borrow, or steal sample bullets of various manufacturers from your shooting buddies, load each one with the same charge to determine which bullet your pistol likes. You may also determine that there is no differece, which is what I would strongly suspect unless you are an expert shot and shooting off a rest..

918v
April 9, 2010, 12:18 PM
+1

Each gun will prefer something over something else. Plated bullets are pretty much the same. Their intended use is plinking and they do well for that.

The primary determinant of surgical accuracy is gun voodoo. Either your gun likes the combination of bullet/powder/primer/case brand/OAL or it doesn't. While it will shoot any decent combo well, only certain special combos will give you that group you're gonna brag about for years down the road.

cheygriz
April 9, 2010, 01:14 PM
I always liked Rainier's, but their price increases have placed them so close to Remington FMJ, that I quit using them and use Remington FMJ instead.

longdayjake
April 9, 2010, 01:19 PM
The accuracy depends on the gun and the load, but you can usually find good accuracy with any 9mm bullet and the right load. That said, I sell plated bullets but the 9mm I sell aren't much cheaper than jacketed. That said, the plated bullets I sell are meant to be loaded as though they were jacketed.

mineralman55
April 9, 2010, 01:54 PM
Yeah, I know each pistol/trigger/barrel combo is "unique". I was trying to be polite, so I'll shuck aside the politeness and say it. Has anyone noticed a better or lesser quality in a particular manufacturer's plated bullets? I did a series of LOA measurements on some plated 115 grain bullets and was shocked at the spread in the lengths... +-0.006". Most of the differences were due to the inconsistencies in the shapes of the bullets' bases.

Actually, in fairness, these may not be Rainier bullets I'm using. I purchased them from a local gunstore, who claimed they were Rainier, but I cannot find the Rainier name anywhere on the thick plastic bag containing them.

918v
April 9, 2010, 02:15 PM
.006" is nothing. I had a box of Speer 147gr Gold Dots that varied by as much as, have a seat cuz this will shock you, .025" in length.

bds
April 9, 2010, 02:20 PM
You can tell Rainier bullets by near FMJ like smoothness on their copper plating. Berry's plating has more "rougher" plating appearance on the surface.

Also, 180gr FP 40S&W Rainier bullet base has rounded concave depression for better obturation.

But you know, if you are looking for accuracy, with Montana Gold brass FMJ price being close to plated, I would just go with MG FMJ bullets. It has been my designated match bullets for the past 15+ years.

BTW, longdayjake sells MG bullets and many have posted good service experience from him.

cheygriz
April 9, 2010, 04:15 PM
I'm not going to say that jacketed bullets are more accurate than plated or cast. But in my personal experience, it has always been easier for me, at least, to work up an accurate load with jacketed bullets. :cool:

I used the plated bullets, especially in .40 and .45 for years mainly because of cost. but now that's there's little difference in cost, I've pretty much switched to jacketed. :p

I still cast a few thousand now and then, but as I get older, and shoot less, casting becomes burdensome. :(

frankge
April 9, 2010, 04:28 PM
Zeros are almost the same price at plated.

wv67
April 9, 2010, 06:04 PM
I don't have 9mm, but I purchased some of Powerbonds plated bullets in .357. This is my first purchase, but so far every one in the batch has been right at .357 diameter like they're supposed to be. I believe Powerbond does make a 9mm.

gandog56
April 9, 2010, 08:57 PM
I switched from plated bullets to Precision Bullets Moly coated. A glimpse of my last range session target shows you why.

Range 25 feet
40 S&W
Sig P229 with CT Laser grips
Precision Bullets 185 grain RNF with 5.2 gr. W231
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v196/Gandog56/PICT0001-5.jpg

I get comparable results using the same gun and 125 gr FP's using the 357 SIG barrel. (Which is just a 9mm on steroids)

twofifty
April 9, 2010, 09:09 PM
+1

Each gun will prefer something over something else. Plated bullets are pretty much the same. Their intended use is plinking and they do well for that.

The primary determinant of surgical accuracy is gun voodoo. Either your gun likes the combination of bullet/powder/primer/case brand/OAL or it doesn't. While it will shoot any decent combo well, only certain special combos will give you that group you're gonna brag about for years down the road.
I like that: gun voodoo says it all.

twofifty
April 9, 2010, 09:13 PM
gangdog 56, good shooting.
Is your left hand your strong side?

bluetopper
April 9, 2010, 09:37 PM
I get my best accuracy from 147gr flat point cast lead bullets out of my Dan Wesson 9mm 1911.

Seedtick
April 10, 2010, 01:12 AM
I've not shot any of longdayjake's plated 9 mm's (http://www.shop.rmrbullets.com/product.sc?productId=32&categoryId=12) but I'm sold on his plated 357's (http://www.shop.rmrbullets.com/product.sc?productId=26&categoryId=13). They shoot as good as FMJ's if not better. And you can give them a heavy roll crimp without any problems.

And they look shweeet sitting atop nickel Starline brass! :D

ST

:)

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