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9mm Berry's 115gr load

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by fractal7, Jan 21, 2010.

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  1. fractal7

    fractal7 Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    I just wanted to ask some advice my load plans since I like all of my fingers and its my first set of 9mm loads in addition to using plated bullets.

    The charge:

    Berry's recommends using low to mid jacketed data. I plan on using Bullseye, the sierra TMJ data calls for 4.2-4.4 grs. I figure I will keep it 4.0-4.4 grs.


    This is the part I'm a bit confused about. I know that if you seat 9mm too deep you will get pressure problems. How sensitive is this? The Speer manual lists the COAL for a 115gr RN a
    t 1.135", but I also measured a factory RN round that was loaded at 1.154". I loaded up some dummy rounds from 1.169 (What Speer claims is the max COAL) to 1.130" with a crimp from a Lee FCD. I dropped them all in my barrel and they stopped at the same place and all fell out easily enough so they shouldn't have been hitting the rifling. Right now I'm planning to load them to 1.150" just to be a bit on the safe side and closer to a factory load.

    I'm also using some military cases that have already been cleaned, deprimed and have had the primer crimp removed if that affects things at all. There are some other mixed headstamps but a lot of WCC.

    If anything jumps out to anyone let me know. Primarily just the charge for the jacketed data and the seating depth.

    Sorry for such a long post just want to make sure I'm getting everything right for the first time out with these loads.
  2. azar

    azar Member

    Dec 21, 2006
    The 2009 Alliant Manual shows a COAL of 1.125" and a max charge of 4.7g of Bullseye for the 9mm Luger with a 115g Speer GDHP.

    The COAL of 1.125" is the length Alliant used in determining the load was a safe one. Increasing the COAL will lower pressures and decreasing the COAL will increase it. If you have no issues seating a bullet anywhere between 1.125" and 1.169" then there is no problem. Pick whatever will best fit your magazine, feed smoothly in your gun, etc. I imagine 1.150" will be no problem.
  3. Starter52

    Starter52 Member

    Oct 16, 2005
    Northeast USA
    azar is correct. There is some danger if you seat 9mm bullets too far, but for the most part all that talk of "pressure spikes" is just cautionary.
  4. ilmonster

    ilmonster Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    I am in the same position. I just got 9mm dies for my Dillon SDB, and some Berry's 9mm 115 gr. RN bullets. Based on threads on THR, load data from Hodgdon, Lee Manual, etc., I thought this might be a conservative load for my Glock 19:

    Hodgdon HP-38 - 4.7 gr.
    OAL - 1.125

    They cycle and shoot fine in my G19 and my Rock River 9mm AR too. YMMV

    The COAL in Win. White box is considerably longer than any of the stats in the loading manuals for whatever reason.
  5. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

    Nov 14, 2008
    Cornelia, GA
    Frac -
    As you study the manuals you'll see all sorts of OALs listed for any given bullet weight. Don't look at just the OAL, also look at the powder load. When the OAL gets longer, the amount of powder generally goes up (if you're comparing apples to apples). Those two variables work together.

    The REAL question is... what OAL will your barrel accept? So the max OAL is a function of the barrel and the bullet shape. You generally want a load/OAL combination that starts with the bullet NOT touching the rifling. FP or bullets with a conical nose generally touch the rifling sooner than RN since they bring the .355" diameter much further forward. See the attached graphic.

    Then when you find a mid-range load you like, to boost it up a tiny bit you have the option of adding more powder of shortening the OAL by .010". Usually shortening a tiny bit is far more effective than trying to measure powder to super extreme accuracies. I.e. hardly anyone here could repeatably measure the difference between 4.30gr and 4.35gr, but shortening by .010" might give you the same pressure result.

    However this only works for small changes. OAL also affects how the bullet leaves the mag and hits the feed ramp. So there is definitely a Min OAL before other errors sneak in. On a 9mm that seems to be on rounds shorter than ~1.000".

    So no one can really answer your question until you tell us if you're using the Berry 115gr FP or RN, AND what gun it's going into.

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  6. Lucky Strike

    Lucky Strike Member

    Sep 28, 2007
    Salem, OR
    I loaded Berry's 115gr with 4.5gr of HP-38 and an OAL of 1.100....they seemed to work alright in my XD. I don't have a chrono but just shooting them I couldn't tell the difference between my round and Remington UMC 115's.

    Is this OAL going to cause any issues long term or is my powder charge low enough to be ok? They list 4.3 to 4.8 as the min/max charge range. I assumed using the loading info for cast bullets from Hodgdon's online data center would be ok.....didn't know that Berry's suggests using FMJ info.
  7. RippinSVT

    RippinSVT Member

    Nov 2, 2008
    I load 4.3gr Bullseye under a 115gr JRN at 1.125 almost in my sleep. It chambers in the 10+ guns I've used it in, and is an accurate load.
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