9mm bullet loading question


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J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 01:51 AM
I went out a bought a Lee Anniversary kit today. As a starter I bought a bag of 100 Magtech 115gr FMJ. Also bought a Lyman Handbook and Cabela's reloading handbook. After looking through the books, the Cabela's used specific brands of bullets in it's recipes and the Lyman only has recipes for a Hornady 115gr JHP. How much does the brand of bullet matter in the recipes? Could use another brand's FMJ in the Lyman recipes for the JHP? I've considered buying supplies from some companies on this board, like Rocky Mtn or Montana Gold, how would I find out what to use for those?

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ljnowell
November 30, 2010, 02:10 AM
Typically you can substitute a bullet by weight, but not by composition. If its a 115gr JHP you can use a 115gr FMJ with that data, your OAL will vary by bullet though. You cannot use jacketed data with lead, or you shouldnt anyway. Plated bullets are a critter of thier own, they exist between the two. Rocky MTN reloading is a great place to do business with, and when you are ready to try lead bullets, Missouri Bullet is another member here and is great to do business with.

What kind of powder are you looking to try. We love helping new people here!

Steve C
November 30, 2010, 02:15 AM
It is common to use load data for a different brand of bullet with the same weight. However, regardless of which brand you use you should always work your load up starting at either the listed start load or a 10% reduction from the maximum load. If only one load is listed then that is a maximum load and you need to do the math and reduce it by 10% for your start load.

Generally I check several different data sources if I don't have the bullets specific data, compare maximum loads and start loads and usually use the most conservative data to begin my work up and never exceed the heaviest published load.

ArchAngelCD
November 30, 2010, 02:31 AM
Like said above, if you are using a bullet of the same type and weight you can use the load data. It's even better if the bullet they are using matches the profile of the bullet you're using. Again as said above, it's very important to "work up a load" where you don't start with the Max charge and start with at least a 10% reduction from the Max.

I'm sure you will do fine. Have fun and always check your work.

J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 03:42 AM
I haven't bought any powder yet because I ran out of time and wasn't sure which one to get. Any recommendations? I plan to go to the store with a list of powders that I have load data for, and pick from what's in stock. I think I've found a good local source for brass, and possibly bullets as well.

What is the difference between plated and jacketed?

I looked at Missouri bullet. Why are the diameters .356 for 9mm when everything I have says it should be .355? The lead bullets are much cheaper than the jacketed bullets. What are the downsides?

Has anyone used load data at handloads.com?

Xfire68
November 30, 2010, 04:36 AM
The differences between plated and jacketed (Short version) plated have a thin layer of copper over the lead core. Jacketed have a much thicker copper layer and can hold together better at higher velocities.

Jacketed bullets don't foul your barrel like lead bullets do and require less difficult cleaning.

I forget the reason for the lead being .356 but, it is normal.

I have been debating going lead as I shoot a bunch and being a disabled vet on a limited income my shooting budget suffers first!:cuss:

I have read that those that shoot lead don't find it to be hard to clean and it is much cheaper to load!

PS. your going to like your new Lee kit! I have one and a Lee 4 hole Turret and soon a Hornady LNL AP. Did I say reloading is addicting!

gilly6993
November 30, 2010, 08:27 AM
I shoot strictly lead (Missouri bullets) and have no major leading issues.....clean my guns every few times out and never have an issue.....

MrOldLude
November 30, 2010, 08:59 AM
For all intents and purposes, a 115 gr 9mm plated bullet can be loaded exactly the same as an FMJ bullet. The copper coating is thinner than a copper jacket, but at reasonable to even hot 115 gr loads, you won't strip through the plating. Berrys' in particular gives the 100% reliable upper limit to be about 1200 FPS. You won't be exceeding this with safe max-pressure 115gr loads. Some people regularly run plated bullets slightly beyond 1300 in their .357 sigs. At a point however, the plating will separate, and the accuracy will go wonky.

mcdonl
November 30, 2010, 09:46 AM
All I shoot is lead, and no issues. But, I cast my own so I lube the crap out of them. that may help.

Pilot
November 30, 2010, 10:04 AM
Powder for 9MM for target shooting? I've been using Titegroup and W231/HP-38 with good success.

bds
November 30, 2010, 10:16 AM
I looked at Missouri bullet. Why are the diameters .356 for 9mm when everything I have says it should be .355? The lead bullets are much cheaper than the jacketed bullets.
I forget the reason for the lead being .356 but, it is normal.
Lead bullet diameters are sized 0.001" larger than jacketed bullet (.356" vs .355") to provide tighter bullet-to-barrel seal and minimize gas cutting of the bullet base (escaping hot gas melts/softens the lead bullet base), which results in leading at the chamber end. Keep in mind that tighter seal increases the chamber pressure so you need to use lead load data for lead bullet which is often much lower than jacketed load data.
What are the downsides?
With jacketed bullets, you can load anywhere between starting charge to max load data without worrying about leading - you may just get more fouling at the lower powder charges. With lead bullets, you may need to use mid to high range load data to properly obturate the bullet base (bumping and widening of the bullet base during powder ignition to seal bullet base tight against the rifling) and minimize gas cutting/leading. Harder the bullet, higher the powder charge you need to use to minimize leading. Generally, I find that with harder 24 BHN lead bullets, I need to use high-to-near max load data to minimize leading. Missouri Bullets offer "less hard" 18 BHN lead bullets that I can use mid-to-high range load data with minimal leading. If you want to use even lower starting charge/target loads, they offer softer 12 BHN lead bullets that will obturate at lower powder charges.

Downsides?

You need to be more careful about case neck flaring/seating bullets and removing any leading in the barrel.

Jacketed bullets can be seated without the worry of shaving the side of the bullet as the lead core is protected by the jacketing. With lead bullets, you may need to flare the case neck a bit more and carefully set the bullet flat during seating so the bullet won't tilt and shave the side of the bullet. Depending on the powder/charge used, you may experience some leading until you get your powder charge dialed in. Most of us use copper scrubber wrapped bore jag/brushes to remove the leading in the barrel.

I haven't bought any powder yet because I ran out of time and wasn't sure which one to get. Any recommendations?
+1 for W231/HP38. I always recommend W231/HP38 (same powder) for new reloader as it has broader load range, plenty of available load data for various pistol calibers (especially for lead) and meters very well. It is my designated match powder as it produces very accurate loads even for lighter recoiling target loads.

Has anyone used load data at handloads.com?
Use load data from handloads.com with caution as many are near/over max charges (many loads don't even list OALs :eek:). I would always reference the latest published load data from powder manufacturers' websites or reloading manuals to verify my charge loads.

Walkalong
November 30, 2010, 11:06 AM
Use load data from handloads.com with cautionAgreed. Check everything not gotten straight from a load book or online powder company PDF.

918v
November 30, 2010, 11:40 AM
You can substitute bullets of like composition, length, and nose profile. The problem with 9mm bullets is that FMJ profiles vary like cell phones at the mall. Sierra makes the shortest 115 FMJ. Winchester Hollow Base FMJ are the longest. Sierra recommends an OAL of 1.090". Winchester can go as long as 1.169". As you can imagine, the longer OAL calls for more powder to reach the same pressure and velocity. Whatever you do, make sure you have enough bullet in the case to make the round structurally sound. Too often someone tries to seat the Sierra to 1.169" and experiences a round breaking in half on the way into the chamber.

When trying to substitute bullets, imagine a half full glass of water. Pretend this is your 9mm case filled with powder. Now imagine seating a JHP or FMJ to whatever OAL. In order to maintain the same pressure, the bottom of the bullets MUST be positioned in the exact same spot relative to the top of the powder.

So, FMJ's are typically seated to a longer OAL and JHP's to a shorter OAL. You can figure out the seating depth by measuring the length of the bullets and subtracting it from the OAL.

Also, understand that some bullet profiles, i.e. TC, do not allow the same OAL as RN profiles. They hit the rifling sooner due to their abrupt ogjive and need to be seated deeper.

As far as your magtech 115 FMJ, measure the length and let us know. I'm sure someone here has the other brands mentioned in your reloading data and they will be more than happy to measure theirs and tell you the length.

J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 07:57 PM
Went shopping again today and bought some HP38, 300 CCI 500s and a caliper. The Magtech 115gr FMJs I have are .578.

I had a bunch of brass that I saved from the range and rejected almost almost all of it due to it being below .751. Going to buy more brass and bullets tomorrow.

Loved the Lee press, but hate the Auto prime. I put 6 primers in, and spent 20 minutes messing with it with no results. I think the shellholder is keeping the tray from going up far enough to work.

WanMan99
November 30, 2010, 08:14 PM
You will have better results if you you put 50 - 100 primers into the primer tray. The weight of the primers helps it to feed correctly. Not sure what your measurements of .578 and .751 are of. You do not need to worry about case size length on handgun loads (you definately need to measure on rifle cartridges). Use your caliper to check the over all length (OAL) after you seat the bullet. Your load data should specify how many grains of powder and the OAL after seating the bullet.
Be safe....

Jim Watson
November 30, 2010, 08:20 PM
The Magtech 115gr FMJs I have are .578.

The length of the bullet does not figure into modern reloading data. Seat them to about the same OAL as common factory loaded FMJs and proceed. My WWB is 1.162", barely below the maximum of 1.169". You might have to go shorter to get that bullet to chamber freely.

I had a bunch of brass that I saved from the range and rejected almost almost all of it due to it being below .751.

Brass length varies a lot. It does not matter much in cheap bulk pistol ammo, what you had was probably fine - it shot the first time - and no need to buy new.

1SOW
November 30, 2010, 08:23 PM
9mm case length: SAAMI "Maximum" i s .754"-ish. Most range pick-ups are .74xx" (or slightly less) and are fine to use. You don't need to trim 9mm cases.

A while back, I read some info on loading for "accuracy"--technical accuracy. The longer cases (3/4"+) were shown to make tighter groups. I did some case measuring to see what I had on hand and never found a case over .747". The longer range pick-ups I had after sizing were generally Winchesters. I have at leat 8-9K range pick-ups on my bench that are visually checked, deprimed, tumbled and"ready to load". I'd be willing to bet they are well ' short' of .751".
I'll also bet they all shoot very well. If I was trying/able to shoot "Bullseye" with a 9mm, I'd show more concern with case length and crimp.

If the 9mm range cases are in good condition (no splits, creases or loose primer pockets) , properly loaded and sized, they'll shoot fine.

If you have to throw them away, I'll give you my address.

J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 08:29 PM
The Lyman book I have said not to reduce the cases below the trim to length, which they listed as .751. So I measured all my cases and only planned to use the ones that met that but I haven't discarded the others yet.

Cemetery21
November 30, 2010, 08:30 PM
You may have the large primer tray and punch in the tool.

Brass length - I measure rifle brass every time it is sized. I measure pistol brass never.

J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 08:32 PM
I tried both. Oddly the large appears smaller.

GLOOB
November 30, 2010, 08:53 PM
I had a bunch of brass that I saved from the range and rejected almost almost all of it due to it being below .751.

In addition to the other good replies, you also have to keep in mind that as the brass expands, it temporarily gets shorter. If you measure your brass, be sure to do it AFTER resizing. The cases will "grow" a bit.

J_McLeod
November 30, 2010, 08:56 PM
I measured it all after running it through the resizing die.

soloban
November 30, 2010, 10:04 PM
I use the 115 Gr Magtech FMJ bullets with 6.0 Gr of Power Pistol at a 1.125" OAL. Below are my results with 50 rounds @ 10 yds with a CZ-75B.

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1390/5168248257_491b3a64a2.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/24048875@N02/5168248257/)

918v
November 30, 2010, 11:45 PM
The length of the bullet does not figure into modern reloading data.

False.

For those of you who do not understand the relationship between bullet length, OAL, and case volume:

The longer the bullet, the more room it takes up in the case at a given OAL. The more room the bullet takes-up, the less case volume you have. The less case volume, the higher the pressure. This is crucial in small capacity cases using quick burning powders (Bullseye, 231, etc) as pressures can rise very quickly will small decreases in OAL.

This is easily verifiable with QL and case expansion measurements.

Jim Watson
December 1, 2010, 12:09 AM
I didn't say length did not affect internal ballistics, I said it did not figure into reloading data. If you want to apply it in some way, you have to measure it and do your own calculations.

Once upon a time, bullet seating depth was listed by makers like Hercules.

ArchAngelCD
December 1, 2010, 01:31 AM
Went shopping again today and bought some HP38, 300 CCI 500s and a caliper. The Magtech 115gr FMJs I have are .578.
You are going to like the results you get with HP-38(W231). I usually load a 124gr bullet in my 9mm ammo but when I do use a 115gr bullet a good charge of HP-38 is 4.8gr. You can go higher but that's a good practice load. HP-38/W231 will also work very well with lead bullets so you won't need to buy another powder if you decide to load lead too. There are other powders that work well in the 9mm like Longshot, HS-6 and a few others but I like HP-38 because it does a good job with different bullets and for both lead and jacketed bullets.

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 01:42 AM
dumb question: Are W231 and Hp-38 the same thing? Can I use load date interchangably?

ArchAngelCD
December 1, 2010, 02:01 AM
Yea, Hp-38 and W231 are exactly the same powder and that has been verified by Hodhdon/ IMR/ Winchester. No need to take anyone's word on something that important, write or call them like a lot of us did to verify.

As for load data, all CURRENT load data is interchangeable. As a matter of fact the load data on the Hodgdon Load Data Site (http://data.hodgdon.com/cartridge_load.asp) is identical for both powders.

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 02:16 AM
All the data at the Hodgdon site matches, but for some reason Lee lists them as having different VMDs.

0.0926 HP38
0.0931 WIN 231

ArchAngelCD
December 1, 2010, 02:21 AM
Which Lee book? It's possible (but I doubt it) at one point in history they were slightly different but for at least the past Decade they are identical. That's why I emphasized you can interchange "current" load data just to be on the safe side.

Like I said, write Hodgdon/ IMR/ Winchester and ask them to set your mind at ease.

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 02:24 AM
http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/catalog/browse.cgi?1253614835.896=/html/instruct/index.html
The VMD .pdf at the bottom.

ArchAngelCD
December 1, 2010, 02:26 AM
I don't know why they are listing different data for each. I would trust Winchester/Hodgdon more than Lee when it comes to their powders.

*EDIT*
At least they list W296 and H110 with the same VDM of 0.0656 (also the same powders along with W540/HS-6, W571/HS-7 and W760/H414)

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 02:31 AM
I don't know why they are listing different data for each. I would trust Winchester/Hodgdon more than Lee when it comes to their powders.
Agreed. Just about every load data I have has a recipe for one or other, so more options.

First Big Foot
December 1, 2010, 02:54 AM
I might mention that I have been using a Lee Load Master almost 20 years. I prefer it to my RL 550, mostly because it has automatic rotating.

I did make a couple modifications.

1-The shell holder-inners were screwed down pieces of sheet metal, and if you wanted to check a shell mid turn you had to unscrew the darn thing. I made spring wire replacements that flex out of the way to check a round.

2-The rubber O-ring die locking nuts have been tossed, and Hornady or RCBS rings with set screws installed. This allows the dies to be removed, and replaced, without having to do all the readjusting.

3-A piece of primer plastic box was added to the side of the discharge chute between the chute and the lever handle to prevent rounds falling between the two to the floor.

The automatic shell dispenser was added, and I love it. It is my intention to add a bullet installer soon for a couple calibers.

As for picking a powder, I read up on all the various calibers I intend to load, and try to pick a powder that will do all of them. Unique is ubiquitous, HS6 covers several, depends on which rounds you wish to reload.

First Big Foot

bds
December 1, 2010, 08:49 AM
I think First Big Foot posted on the wrong thread.

Good posts ArchAngelCD.

Load data for W231/HP38 used to vary slightly in the years past, but now they are the same as they are now exactly the same powder put in different label containers. Older load books/load data won't show the change. I always tell people to use the most current published load data as powder manufacturers/distributors do change powder formulations.

Hodgdon owns IMR, but is licensed to sell/distribute Winchester powders (http://www.hodgdon.com/history.html).

Hodgdon purchased IMR® Powder Company in October 2003 ... IMR powders continue to be manufactured in the same plant and with the same exacting performance criteria and quality assurance standards that shooters have come to expect.

In March 2006, Hodgdon Powder Company and Winchester® Ammunition announced that Winchester® branded reloading powders would be licensed to Hodgdon.

918v
December 1, 2010, 11:31 AM
I didn't say length did not affect internal ballistics, I said it did not figure into reloading data. If you want to apply it in some way, you have to measure it and do your own calculations.

Once upon a time, bullet seating depth was listed by makers like Hercules.


Sierra Hornady and Speer list OAL with their data. Data without OAL is almost useless. A max load for a 115gr RN bullet at an OAL of 1.169" will create excessive pressures when used with a TC bullet at an OAL of 1.080" and you can't load the TC bullet to 1.169" OAL. The TC bullet at that short OAL will cause excessive pressures even if you use a starting load for the RN bullet.

The best approach is to use the bullet manufacturer's data and their OAL. If you have another brand bullet, then the best way to go is to measure the bullet length and to seat it in such a way that the available case volume remains the same.

Seedtick
December 1, 2010, 10:58 PM
originally posted by 918v -
If you have another brand bullet, then the best way to go is to measure the bullet length and to seat it in such a way that the available case volume remains the same.

^ What he said ^

Seedtick

:)

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 11:05 PM
Worked with the stuff a bit more in my free time today. I got the Auto Prime to work. It primed well, but didn't feed well with 50 in. Should I be worried about seating the primers too deeply? I measured some, and they were between .012 and .004. I stopped at flaring the case mouth. Tried a few, but even when I screwed the die in all the way, it didn't do much to the case, and I didn't get much resistance from the lever.

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 11:13 PM
Thought the story was interesting. Here is the reply to my email to Hodgdon customer service. They answered almost immediately upon receipt of my email.

There are a few powders that have or do share names, and data. These powder are the same as shown below. THE SAME. Exactly, made in the same plant, the same. The only difference in the name on the label.



231 = HP-39

540 = HS-6

571 = HS-7

760 = H414

296 = H110



These represent instances where the same product is marketed under 2 names. This started years ago when Winchester did not want to be in the powder business. Bruce Hodgdon decided to purchase WWII surplus powders in burn speeds used by Winchester and sell them to the public. Later, when military surplus supplies of these powders were exhausted, Bruce purchased the same powders in new production. Eventually, Winchester decided Bruce was making too much money on those powders and Winchester brought them out under the Winchester name. It has been this way for many years.



Mike Daly

Cutomer Service Manager

Hodgdon Family of Fine Propellants

Hodgdon Smokeless Powder

IMR Powder Company

Winchester Smokeless Propellants

GOEX Blackpowder

bds
December 1, 2010, 11:21 PM
J_McLeod, nice going! Primers seated .004" below flush is sufficient to set the primer anvil against the priming compound.

I stopped at flaring the case mouth. Tried a few, but even when I screwed the die in all the way, it didn't do much to the case, and I didn't get much resistance from the lever.
If you are using Lee powder pour-through case flaring die, you either need the funnel adapter (http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/parts/2168.jpg) or the Auto Disk swivel screwed in or the case neck expanding plug (http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/parts/2413.jpg) will simply move up and down freely.

J_McLeod
December 1, 2010, 11:29 PM
J_McLeod, nice going! Primers seated .004" below flush is sufficient to set the primer anvil against the priming compound.


If you are using Lee powder pour-through case flaring die, you either need the funnel adapter (http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/parts/2168.jpg) or the Auto Disk swivel screwed in or the case neck expanding plug (http://www.leeprecision.com/graphics/parts/2413.jpg) will simply move up and down freely.
Thanks. Are they too deep on the .012" primers?

I am using the die you mentioned. I got the breech lock challenger kit, so hopefully there's something in there to make it. I'll take a look later.

ArchAngelCD
December 2, 2010, 01:03 AM
J_McLeod,
I listed all the powders that Hodgdon named as the same in an above post. (Post #32) I'm glad you took my advice and checked for yourself because you shouldn't trust anyone on the NET with something that important. (and possibly dangerous)

bds
December 2, 2010, 01:09 AM
Are they too deep on the .012" primers?
If you seat the primer deeper than .004" below flush and begin to see flattening of the primer cup, you are starting to crush the primer cup to where the anvil is pushed into the priming compound instead of being set on the priming compound.

For me, slight flattening of the primer cup still ignites the primer. I have never seated the primer so deep and flat that it failed to ignite. :D

Cemetery21
December 2, 2010, 12:38 PM
+1 on the primer seating depth. I really crush them in since I'm so anal about not having a high primer. I have not measured, but I'm sure I'm as deep as you can get with the Lee tool. I've never had a failure or an accident and performance has been perfect shooting thousands of rounds a year at prairie puppies. I shoot some pistol, too, with the same seating force and no ill effects. I'm sure I'm crushing the compound, but I have not seen any adverse affects.

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