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Plated, Jacketed, or Lead?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by kingmt, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. kingmt

    kingmt Well-Known Member

    I have only loaded JHP in the past but this cost way to much to buy 100 @ a time from Walmart & I want to see what I can load from elsewhere.

    The load data I want to load 380 ACP & 9 mm Luger both with a 115 gran bullet & the only load data I can come up with is for a 115g JHP (.355) or cast. I was think about a plated flat nose or lead but they are .356 same for the the 38/357 the plated & lead are .358 vs .357. & .451 vs .452.

    My questions would be is the load data for cast already talking about .356 instead of .355 & so on? Does the plated @ .356 load the same as jacked @ .355? How to adjust for the differences?

    One more question would be can I shoot lead in my revolver that is ported at the end of the barrel(it said not to use lead shoot but nothing about lead bullets that I can remember)?

    I've been loading for a while but I've never tried o tweak anything so I fell like a newbie at this & I guess I still am as far as this goes.
  2. Xfire68

    Xfire68 Well-Known Member

    You may as I have run into trouble loading 115g bullets in a .380.

    Even though there is data you can find tons of posts about the 115g bullets being too long as I have found out as well. The 115g length ends up bulging or buckling the case.

    I have found a 100g bullet to be the max for .380 or if you can find the 102g.

    The one I like to "Share" with both .380 and 9mm is the 90g Hornady XTP. It works great in both my CZ 75B and my Walther PPK/S.
  3. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Well-Known Member

    Don't worry about the different diameters of lead vs. jacketed, since that's the way it's supposed to be. Lead bullets should be .001-.002" over bore diameter for proper fit. They're relatively soft, so they swage down to fit the bore and you get a better fit and gas seal.

    I shoot all three bullet types through my handguns, and there is ample data available for each type. For plated bullets, which I've shot tens of thousands of, the general rule is to use midrange jacketed data and you'll be fine.

    I would suggest buying a couple of different reloading manuals, and in particular the Lyman 49th Edition, since it has data for both jacketed and cast bullets, which I think you'll find useful in your quest for knowledge.

    I've fired cast bullets through my ported .45 acp pistol, and I just have to clean the lead out of the port, the same as powder fowling. You may get some shaving, but as long as you stay on top of it, you'll be fine.

    There's really no mystery about loading cast bullets. In fact, when I started reloading in 1963, jacketed bullets were rather rare, and cast was the norm. If there had been an internet, the questions would have been reversed, but there wasn't, so we experimented and read books on the subject and we didn't blow ourselves up or ruin any handguns in the process.

    As for loading 115 grain bullets in the .380, they're generally too heavy. For that caliber you should stick with bullets in the 85 to 100 grain range.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Bovice

    Bovice Well-Known Member

    As long as you don't have the rounds loaded to send the bullets screaming down the bore, plated bullets are fine. You can load them to at least factory level, maybe a bit faster. I don't use lead but everything I've read tells me that lead bullets have to be loaded more softly.
  5. MrOldLude

    MrOldLude Well-Known Member

    A more specific corollary to this rule, for Berry's plated in particular, is don't exceed 1200 FPS.

    You won't be hitting that with .380, and you'll have to load 115 gr 9mm beyond published max loads to see problems. So for practical purposes in this weight and caliber, plated is effectively the same as jacketed.
  6. kingmt

    kingmt Well-Known Member

    I normally load hot but I'm wanting to do a 360. I want to bend over & pick up my brass from my autos instead of walking 60' feet to find it. I also want to help my guns last longer & save some money.

    I do have to stay away from lead in my service gun (Glock 19) because of the whole reloading voids the warranty thing. I'm told it is imposable to get the lead out of the rifling.
  7. RevolvingGarbage

    RevolvingGarbage Well-Known Member

    Reloading voids the warranty of just about every gun out there. If you blow a gun up, obviously they aren't going to do anything for you, but if the gun has an unrelated problem, you would most likely still be covered whether you used reloads or not.

    As for loading for a Glock, there's no reason not to, but Glocks have polygonal rifled barrels, and will lead up quickly if cast bullets are used. Reloading with jacketed or plated bullets will be just fine.
  8. kingmt

    kingmt Well-Known Member


    Thanks guys.

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