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Old October 8, 2013, 02:06 PM   #1
1KPerDay
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My first inaccurate .40 load (Berry's 180 FP, American Select)

CAUTION: The following post includes loading data beyond currently published maximums for this cartridge. (Or more specifically, unpublished powder/bullet combinations.) USE AT YOUR OWN RISK. Neither the writer, The High Road, nor the staff of THR assume any liability for any damage or injury resulting from use of this information.


All of my .40 loads so far have been very accurate; at least as accurate as factory ball and in almost every case more accurate.

This is my first attempt at working up a load with this combination, 180gr Berry's plated flat points, and American Select powder. The 180 gr BERBs have given me good results in the past with other powders.

My loads so far have been:
.40 Berry's 155 HBFP, 5.1 HP-38, and 5.5 HP-38
.40 Berry's 155 HBFP, 5.2 American select 1.24"
.40 MBC IDPA#7 4.0 Red Dot (very accurate in G23/Storm Lake).
.40 180 MBC FP, 4.0 Red Dot

All have proven reliable and accurate.

However my first attempt using American Select and BERB 180 FP is not going well for some reason. Alliant lists 5.1 as max for 180 grain XTP, so I backed off the recommended 10%(ish) and started at 4.7 grains. Feels about the same as the above 5.1 grains HP-38 155 BERB HB load above, and significantly lighter than federal and Lawman ball. I don't have a chrony yet.

No pressure signs, burns clean. However accuracy is not up to stuff; that is to say, I can't hit 8-inch plates at 20 yards offhand every time. I shot several groups from a rest at paper to confirm my suspicions, and accuracy is inconsistent (several random fliers). During the session I also shot several magazines full of the 155 BERB HP-38 load and factory ball back to back and had no trouble hitting the plates. Paper groups for factory and 155 BERB loads were about half the size.

Furthermore, I had several FTF jams, hangs up against top of barrel hood it appears. I've never had trouble with this bullet profile before. Or with any FTF jams that I recall.

IIRC I've always bought the "double struck" option from berry's before; and this time it's not specified. That couldn't be making the difference, could it? Does it possibly just need to be loaded hotter/closer to published max?

Maybe it's time to actually clean my Glock 23? Should I try the factory barrel (I've been shooting the storm lake exclusively because I mostly shoot lead in outdoor competitions and I don't really like the blast/concussion of the ported G23C barrel).


My instinct is to try a few and 4.9 and a few at 5.1 (assuming the 4.9s look okay), and possibly swap out the barrels and see if accuracy improves.

Guess I just wanted to see what you folks thought. American Select has proven excellent in 9mm and passable in .380 and .38 special so far. I like how clean it is. Like most large flake powders it does bridge occasionally in the Lee Pro Auto Disc if you get below about 3 grains (for the .380). You have to really pay close attention to visually check the powder charge each time and weigh charges frequently. I'm going to stick to HP-38 for the .380 in future, I think... if I can ever find any again.


BTW TJconevera has Berry's and Xtreme bullets in stock.
http://www.tjconevera.com/berrys-bullets.html

I'm not a company schill; just a fan. Excellent service and great prices.
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Old October 9, 2013, 03:58 PM   #2
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Plated bullets in the Glock are iffy for accuracy. Too much crimp will damage the fragile plating. Not enough crimp may allow bullet to be deep seated during feeding, causing more problems than lack of accuracy.

Some loads shoot well, some pattern like buckshot.

Precision Delta has good jacketed bullets at close to the same price. Put in your order and wait.
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Old October 9, 2013, 05:12 PM   #3
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What bothers me is that I had really good results with my first few thousand, through multiple guns and multiple powders. I pulled one to check the crimp and there's a line intented into the plating but not cutting through it.

I checked my records and the previous ones I used were not the truncated cone/flat point style, but round nose flat point if that makes sense.

Maybe that makes a difference. I'm trying another powder now. I'll try the OEM barrel as well, with my first batch of AS loads. Maybe it'll work.
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Old October 15, 2013, 09:14 AM   #4
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I can't figure this out... nothing I try increases accuracy of these bullets much.

benched at 21 feet, Glock 23C with non-ported Storm Lake barrel. (I shot a couple other groups with my reloads with the OEM barrel with similar results).



Bottom left Federal champion 180 fmj
Bottom right American select 4.7
Middle left red dot 4.0
Middle right red dot 4.5
Top red dot 4.9

Should I try varying OAL? Primers? These red dot loads were loaded with Remington 1 1/2 small pistol primers if that makes a difference (though the American Select loads were made with Tula SPP). I just bought 2K of these bullets so I need to find an accurate load... or they're worthless to me.

I'll try to find some more suitable powder, though AS and RD have proven accurate in the past in .40. Below are a couple of my reloads with MBC lead bullets at 30 feet compared to factory ball, factory on the left, reloads on the right.


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Last edited by 1KPerDay; October 15, 2013 at 09:22 AM.
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Old October 15, 2013, 06:40 PM   #5
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"Sucks for you, 1K."
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Old October 16, 2013, 02:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
I checked my records and the previous ones I used were not the truncated cone/flat point style, but round nose flat point if that makes sense.
Sounds like the gun/s just don't like that bullet. Have you re-tried the bullet/s that shot well?
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Old October 16, 2013, 02:51 PM   #7
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No... next order I'll get those instead. but at this rate it'll take me a couple years to go through 2K bullets.
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Old October 16, 2013, 04:49 PM   #8
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Powder too fast for 180. Plated is just like cast.
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Old October 16, 2013, 05:33 PM   #9
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Based on many loads of both in various calibers, plated is not just like cast, but I agree that slower powders are easier to find good loads with in .40.
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Old October 16, 2013, 06:17 PM   #10
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I have 1k Of the 180grn. fp. berry's,40 s&w . my glock will chew em up and spit'em out but my M&p40c iam having the same prob. with. have just 100 rnds. of horn. xtp's. going to try next as I been messing with crimp and the oal. finely sorted out brass to used/new and also noticed case buldge down around bottom of case on used. eliminated them and am just using new Remington. A lil. shot of case lube helped me on the used brass to seat cuase man its been tight espc. w/starline.(for seating that is). iam a newbe. but am enjoying this cite,good luck as u r helping me! and walk/along!
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Old October 16, 2013, 09:47 PM   #11
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What's a good powder? I use Red Dot for my cast loads because it works well, I have a lot of it, and recoil is minimal.

Powder selection is very dicey right now.
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Old October 16, 2013, 10:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1KPerDay View Post
What's a good powder? I use Red Dot for my cast loads because it works well, I have a lot of it, and recoil is minimal.

Powder selection is very dicey right now.
1K,
I've used IMR 7625, Win Super Field and Universal for my 40 loads with great success. All my loads are with hard cast so far.
I just loaded some Berry's 180gr with 7625 and WSF. I have American Select, I think I'll duplicate your loads and try them out of my M&P and 4006.

I like A.S. powder also for pistol. I use it exclusively in my 45acp target loads.
BTW, Lee Manual has a listing for Am. Sel. with 180gr. lead. 4.6gr@854fps - 5.0@912fps
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Old October 17, 2013, 12:04 AM   #13
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Thanks. I'm surprised I can't get it to work well.
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Old October 17, 2013, 05:21 PM   #14
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HP-38/w231 works fine for me with 165, 175 or 180. Shot ~1000 MBC, then switched to Xtreme plated, now just shoot my own cast, either Unique or HP-38. Did you mic the Berry's to make sure they are 0.401? On a REALLY good day I can do 2" @ 25yd with 5 gr HP38 behind a 165 cast, been shooting coated and it is really NICE. Been shooting WST in the 9, need to try it in the 40. Did 2" @ 10yds with a XDs today, before & after ~ 100 rnds. Coated just doesn't build up lube reside or leading.
Plated isn't cast but I load the same for both. The Xtreme's are very good bullets I just can't afford to shoot them much. I had to alox the MBC to get them to work good. Personally, my cast either PC or Hi-Tek coated (Bayou bullets) are better than plated and of course much less expensive.

Last edited by popper; October 17, 2013 at 05:29 PM.
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Old October 17, 2013, 06:16 PM   #15
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Did you mic the Berry's to make sure they are 0.401?
No, actually. I'll need to do that. Thanks.
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Old October 31, 2013, 12:16 PM   #16
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Measured 5 bullets and they all measured .4005". With my crappy harbor freight calipers that's likely .401 or .40075". So probably not the issue.
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Old October 31, 2013, 01:24 PM   #17
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You listed quite a few different loads there and one of them is basically the bullet and powder I use the most. 140Missouri IDP 7 with Red dot is my go to round for fun steel and plates but I use 4.9gr and its still a pretty soft load.
Berry's and other coated/plated bullets should be loaded closer to lead loads than FMJ loads. Plated bullets are softer and will tumble as the loads increase because of the gasses going around the bullet.
Also lead and plated bullets should not be used with a compensator, only FMJ.
I have never used American Select but if its slow burning and you need to build pressure to get the most out of it then use Jacketed bullets and save the Berry's, Rainier, and lead for the lighter loads with faster powders.
Someone mentioned Precision bullets. I did not like them although I used 9mm. I had to load them even softer than lead to get any accuracy out of them.
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Old October 31, 2013, 01:40 PM   #18
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I would mic the mouth of the case and see if maybe your swaging the bullets a bit during crimp. You could also disassemble a round and re-mic a bullet.

Berry's may be softer than what you have been used to.
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Old October 31, 2013, 04:51 PM   #19
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I would mic the mouth of the case and see if maybe your swaging the bullets a bit during crimp. You could also disassemble a round and re-mic a bullet.
A good idea also, and I will try that. Clarification: At what point would I mic the mouth of the case? Am I looking for the final crimped diameter to be within a certain range? Micing a sized/expanded case mouth before seating/crimping isn't going to tell me anything, is it?

As I said, however, I had excellent results with Berry's 155-grain plated using the exact same setup I'm using now. Maybe this batch is a little softer or something.

Quote:
You listed quite a few different loads there and one of them is basically the bullet and powder I use the most. 140Missouri IDP 7 with Red dot is my go to round
Yes, for me as well. I have no trouble with that combination and it's my "steel and informal competition load". Glad to hear it works for you also.

I was asking specifically about Berry's plated 180s, which I'm having trouble with so far. Admittedly I haven't tried a bunch of powders, as there is very little variety available ATM.
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Old October 31, 2013, 05:26 PM   #20
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Quote:
I was asking specifically about Berry's plated 180s, which I'm having trouble with so far. Admittedly I haven't tried a bunch of powders, as there is very little variety available ATM.
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Yeah, I have never use Berry's 180gr but I have shot boxes of 125gr 9mm and my convoluted point should have been that light loads with fast powders are best for this bullet. I have no experience with American Select at all.
I have shot quite a few boxes of Rainier 180's and they are quite soft although they are plated, therefore the "almost" lead loads. My 180gr "Rainier" load is 4.5gr of 231. Very accurate and soft.
Contrary to the others opinions above, I would not use slower pistol powders with either lead or coated/plated bullets. Personally I think this is why you are having accuracy issues. I would change my recipe and save the slow powders for full metal jacket just like I save my AA9, H110, and 2400 for the higher pressure, higher velocity loads.
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Old October 31, 2013, 05:33 PM   #21
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AS is pretty fast. Like RD, Bullseye, Green Dot, AA#2 etc.

http://www.hodgdon.com/burn-rate.html
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Old October 31, 2013, 07:22 PM   #22
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Yes, American Select is fairly fast. Good stuff, but I prefer medium speed powders for .40 S&W, plated included.
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Old October 31, 2013, 09:57 PM   #23
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Yes it is fast. Since the pressure has to be high for it to work well you should shelve it and use it only for fmj. Lots of other powders out there! Titegroup is all over in my neck of the woods and its fast too!
Sometimes powders just don't work for what you want to do.
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Old November 20, 2013, 06:38 PM   #24
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Kay... I've found a pound of HP-38 (felt like there was a rainbow coming out of it) and a pound of Power Pistol.

Recommended loads to get me in the ballpark?
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Old November 20, 2013, 07:52 PM   #25
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I have loaded 6.6gr of Power Pistol under a 180gr plated FP with very good success.
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