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Rainier bullets?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Lone_Gunman, Jun 17, 2006.

  1. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Well-Known Member

    I am looking for inexpensive 45 ACP 230 grain FMJ's for plinking. Are Rainier Bullets as good as others?

    Can I use load data for other 230g FMJ's with Ranier bullets?

    HSMITH Well-Known Member

    Use lead data backed off by about 10%, they are a LOT closer to plain lead bullets than jacketed bullets.

    Don't load many when you start. Getting the crimp right can be a challenge, and if the crimp isn't right they won't shoot well at all. I wouldn't buy many to start either, some guns just don't like them and won't shoot them well no matter what you do.

    I would start with a target type load, and crimp no tighter than .471 to start. .471 is basically no crimp, just flattening the bell back against the bullet. It seems to work best with plated bullets.
  3. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    I shoot about six hundred Ranier 230gr HPs a month. My two stock recipes are either 5gr. Bullseye or 6gr. Unique in mixed brass with Fed Large Pistol primers, loaded to an OAL of 1.2" and finished with the Lee factory crimp die. I generally prefer the Bullseye load, but the difference in POI is minimal between the two.

    I can get a box of 500 Raniers for less than $40; that's fifteen bucks cheaper than most any other HP bullet. As long as the pistol shoots 'em OK (and I've not had one yet that wouldn't) and you're not looking for that last 1/2" of accuracy at 25 yards, they're not a bad choice.
  4. warrior23

    warrior23 Well-Known Member

    I must be one of the lucky ones,I've used Rainiers for several years now in 40,10,44,45 without any problems in several different handguns,I def dont run them too hot but I get some great accuracy with them.
  5. Johnny Guest

    Johnny Guest Moderator Emeritus

    Q. for rbernie

    May I ask where you buy yours? Seems I paid some $42 or 43 + tax last I bought, but don't recall if 'twas at Sportsman's Warehouse in Lewisville or the Fort Worth Cabella's.

    I've been loading Ranier and Berry's plated 230s with 5.3 to 5.4 gr of W-231 for some months. I shoot most of 'em through a Thompson in SMG mtches. With the open bolt, gilt edge accuracy is not a real issue. When it is, I tend to revert back to Unique. When I do, the Ranier seems to shoot about as well as Rem or Montana Gold FMJ bullets. But the 231 loads aren't really bad, thru my pistols.

  6. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    i still don't get why people use plated.

    http://hi-techammo.com/ sells new 230 fmj for $35/500 or $68/1000
    midwayusa has winchesters' 230 fmj on sale (not currently, but occasionally) for $65/1000 or so. just be patient and grab them when you see them :)

    midway does have a sale right now (ends tomorrow):

    $46 for Hornady Action Pistol (HAP) Bullets 45 Caliber (451 Diameter) 230 Grain Box of 500 (Packaged in Frankford Arsenal Utility Box) ($89/1000, $129/1500)

    well, i take that back... it looks like midway does have
    $32 for Rainier Bullets 45 Caliber (451 Diameter) 230 Grain Plated Round Nose Box of 500 ($159/2000 with free freight)

    so technically, i guess plated is cheaper, but still, remington's fmj are $45/500 ($179/2000 with free freight) so at that delta, why not go FMJ?

    $38 for Winchester Bullets 45 Caliber (451 Diameter) 230 Grain Full Metal Jacket Box of 500 ($73/1000)
  7. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    I mostly buy 'em from MidwayUSA - the shipping is usually cheaper than tax. Midway did raise the price recently to $39.95/500, so it actually works out to about $46 per box by the time you factor in shipping. I probably should have been clearer on that.

    As Taliv pointed out, if you are willing to forgo the HP for a FMJ, you can get 500 Ranier 230gr FMJs from MidwayUSA delivered to your door for less than $40 shipping included. I just prefer to load HPs, so that I always have a few cans of practice ammo that could be used for social work in a pinch. (And yes, I know - there are folks who insist that FMJ is just fine. I'm just not one of those people.)
  8. cherryriver

    cherryriver Well-Known Member

    FMJs have exposed lead at the base. It's generally held that this vaporizes a bit and leaves lead in the air in front of the shooter.
    FMJs shouldn't do that, and so, for those concerned about having inhaled too much bad stuff, should be better.
    I just go the cautious route and use Rainiers (.45) and Berry's (.38).
  9. Busta Prima

    Busta Prima Well-Known Member

    Taliv, one other possible factor . . . FMJ's are a LOT harder and take more powder and POWER (higher pressures) to exit the barrel. This causes more wear and tear on the barrel and other shock susceptible components. This is one advantage of lead. The plated bullets have the softness advantage of lead without the lead fouling. All that and they don't cost much more than good lead bullets. Now granted it would take a LOT of shooting FMJ's to wear out a barrel but it is a point to consider.

    I like them and I now load them in .45, 9mm and .40 with great success. My friend buys the Winchester 9mm from Wal-Mart and my hand loaded Rainiers beat them on accuracy and when chron-ed, my loads are more consistent too. I bought a box for 38 special loading but I haven't tried them there yet.

    Just make sure you observe the 1200 fpm "speed limit" on these and they're GREAT!

  10. Nortonics

    Nortonics Well-Known Member

    You'd have to be pretty 'special' to screw up loading 230 rainiers for .45 ACP. I've loaded and shot thousands (probably tens of thousands) - never a problem and accuracy is good.

    - Rainier 230 plated
    - Mixed Brass
    - Win primers
    - OAL = 1.2"
    - 6.1 grains of Unique or Vint N-340 = 850 fps

    Chunk 'em out at 250 rounds/hour

    Use a better bullet with that recipe and accuracy is superb.
  11. JDGray

    JDGray Well-Known Member

    I've loaded thousands of the 230rn Rainiers over 3.9gr Clays. Gives me 730fps out of a 4" barrel. I load them at 1.250, with a .470 crimp. Now that the price has gone up on the Rainiers, I've switched to jacketed.

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