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Old 09-13-2021, 02:59 PM
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Not sure where to post this so I thought here first. Last Friday I was shooting pistols at the local range. I had a S&W Model 39 and a Beretta Model92. I was shooting at 15 yards in the off-hand position. All the m39 hits were in the 10 ring. The Beretta hits were key-holing. I was using a 147 grain round nosed bullet and 3.5 grains of Bullseye using a CCI Small pistol primer. Trying to figure out why the key-holing. Barrel twist? Best guesses are welcome.
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Old 09-13-2021, 03:38 PM
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Not sure where to post this so I thought here first. Last Friday I was shooting pistols at the local range. I had a S&W Model 39 and a Beretta Model92. I was shooting at 15 yards in the off-hand position. All the m39 hits were in the 10 ring. The Beretta hits were key-holing. I was using a 147 grain round nosed bullet and 3.5 grains of Bullseye using a CCI Small pistol primer. Trying to figure out why the key-holing. Barrel twist? Best guesses are welcome.
Is the 147 bullet cast or jacketed? Big difference. I don't know what the twist rate on any 9mm handgun is, but you shouldn't be experiencing keyholing with a bullet of that weight unless it's grossly undersized in diameter.

You might start by measuring bullet diameter with a micrometer; a caliper won't work if you want an accurate measurement.

I have a Beretta 92F that I bought new in 1988. It's been fired a great deal, almost exclusively with cast bullets. If the cast bullet is of sufficient diameter, about .358", many cast bullets will shoot well. Jacketed bullets are much more forgiving; a .356" or so should work fine.
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Old 09-13-2021, 03:51 PM
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According to "internet searches", the Beretta has a 1 in 9.84 twist and the S&W is 1 in 16. It would seem the Beretta would stabilize the heavier projectile better than the slower SW twist, sorta like the 1/7 is better than 1 in 12 for heavier and longer 5.56mm. I got nothing more. Joe
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Old 09-13-2021, 04:21 PM
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What kind of bullet? Cast lead, swaged lead, copper plated, jacketed, polymer coated, etc.? Theoretically, the tighter twist should shoot tighter groups, but real life isn't always the same as theory. It almost looks like the Beretta was a .40 cal.
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Old 09-13-2021, 04:37 PM
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The bullets are cast lead and the Mitutoyo caliper shows .356 and the Starrett Micrometer it shows .356. The bullets were manufactured by National Bullet Co. of East Lake, Ohio.
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Old 09-13-2021, 04:47 PM
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The bullets are cast lead and the Mitutoyo caliper shows .356 and the Starrett Micrometer it shows .365. The bullets were manufactured by National Bullet Co. of East Lake, Ohio.
Something appears to be wrong. .365" is way too big; they wouldn't chamber if they were that large. .356" will work, but accuracy would probably improve if they were a bit larger.
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Old 09-13-2021, 04:51 PM
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Something appears to be wrong. .365" is way too big; they wouldn't chamber if they were that large. .356" will work, but accuracy would probably improve if they were a bit larger.
Typing faster than I should be. It is also .356 on the Starrett. Will fix the original post.
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Old 09-13-2021, 05:04 PM
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Typing faster than I should be. It is also .356 on the Starrett. Will fix the original post.
I'm pretty sure your Model 39 has a tighter bore than the Beretta and that's why it is more accurate with the .356" bullets. My Beretta shoots cast bullets accurately, as long as they're .3575" to .358" in diameter. I don't know about other Berettas, but that may be the case with them as well. The large diameter bullets I use in the Beretta also do well in a Sig P226 and a Walther P4. I use Bullseye powder with a 150 grain round nose (Lyman .38 Special mould).
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Old 09-13-2021, 05:47 PM
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According to "internet searches", the Beretta has a 1 in 9.84 twist and the S&W is 1 in 16. It would seem the Beretta would stabilize the heavier projectile better than the slower SW twist, sorta like the 1/7 is better than 1 in 12 for heavier and longer 5.56mm. I got nothing more. Joe
Yes, it's slow twists and heavy bullets that don't get along so if those numbers are correct then it's something else. Keyholing is because the bullet is not spinning fast enough to stabilize. Period.

I've been working with 147 gr bullets and a Springfield 1911 all summer. So far the .356's are not optimum. .357 diameter performs better and even .358 does well but at the maximum powder charge weights I start to see signs of over pressure. I'm going with .357.

You could go to .357 and/or up the powder charge. Another way to get it to spin faster is increased velocity. Might want to skip the relatively fast Bullseye and go with something a bit slower like Universal/Unique to get the velocity up. I've used 3.5gr of Bullseye in the Springfield and it shot as well as most loads with .357 diameter bullets. But as I recall at the moment that's a minimum load. If so try pushing it a bit harder.

As a side note, none of the cast bullet loads I've tried will shoot as well as jacketed bullets in the 9mm. But I've gotten close. I'm not a big fan of "good enough" accuracy but with lead bullets in the 9mm I might just have to accept that.

Of course the proper thing to do is slug your barrel. Then go .001 to .002 over that diameter and check that they will chamber of course.

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Old 09-13-2021, 06:07 PM
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Yes, it's slow twists and heavy bullets that don't get along so if those numbers are correct then it's something else. Keyholing is because the bullet is not spinning fast enough to stabilize. Period.

I've been working with 147 gr bullets and a Springfield 1911 all summer. So far the .356's are not optimum. .357 diameter performs better and even .358 does well but at the maximum powder charge weights I start to see signs of over pressure. I'm going with .357.

You could go to .357 and/or up the powder charge. Another way to get it to spin faster is increased velocity. Might want to skip the relatively fast Bullseye and go with something a bit slower like Universal/Unique to get the velocity up. I've used 3.5gr of Bullseye in the Springfield and it shot as well as most loads with .357 diameter bullets. But as I recall at the moment that's a minimum load. If so try pushing it a bit harder.

As a side note, none of the cast bullet loads I've tried will shoot as well as jacketed bullets in the 9mm. But I've gotten close. I'm not a big fan of "good enough" accuracy but with lead bullets in the 9mm I might just have to accept that.

Of course the proper thing to do is slug your barrel. Then go .001 to .002 over that diameter and check that they will chamber of course.

Loading Cast Bullets in the 9mm Luger | Cast Bullet Association
Many give up on cast bullets in the 9mm before they find decent accuracy. Granted, it can be frustrating, but like other handgun cartridges chambered in a good quality semi-auto or revolver, a cast bullet that fits and is of the proper alloy for the load will shoot at least as accurately as the best jacketed bullet.

It took me a long time to find this out and I've lost track of the different bullet designs I've tried in 9mm, but the work paid off. I've always enjoyed load development anyway.

You can slug bores, but I've found a general rule that works well is to use the largest diameter bullet that will permit a loaded cartridge to chamber without difficulty. Using this approach, you can still stay inside the maximum recommended SAAMI outside diameter for a loaded cartridge.
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Old 09-13-2021, 06:12 PM
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Until very recently, S&W used a 1-18.75 twist in everything 9 mm/,38/.357. Due to whining, they changed the twist in 9 mm barrels to 1-10. I doubt that rifling twist has anything to do with the issue.

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Old 09-13-2021, 06:47 PM
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My C-9 3.5" pistol with a 147 gr. Speer TMJ at a oal of 1.165"
with 3.3~ grs of Bullseye is around 828fps and at POA with 1-1.8" rest groups.

My 5" barrel with the same load but the Berry plated RN bullet does 874fps
but it has very poor accuracy.

The Berry does better at 905fps or faster in my long barrel M92
with Green Dot or slower powders.
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Old 09-13-2021, 07:29 PM
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What is the bore diameter of the Beretta? If larger than 357, 358 it could be the cause of the key holing.
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Old 09-13-2021, 07:57 PM
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Many give up on cast bullets in the 9mm before they find decent accuracy. Granted, it can be frustrating, but like other handgun cartridges chambered in a good quality semi-auto or revolver, a cast bullet that fits and is of the proper alloy for the load will shoot at least as accurately as the best jacketed bullet.

It took me a long time to find this out and I've lost track of the different bullet designs I've tried in 9mm, but the work paid off. I've always enjoyed load development anyway.

You can slug bores, but I've found a general rule that works well is to use the largest diameter bullet that will permit a loaded cartridge to chamber without difficulty. Using this approach, you can still stay inside the maximum recommended SAAMI outside diameter for a loaded cartridge.
I may give up. I'm not sure it's worth it. I've tried 115gr, 124gr, 147gr with half a dozen powders. The lead bullets aren't horrible but not as good as jacketed in the same weight. I'd call them "decent". Well the 115's cast were horrible. The rest were decent. If I test any given weight in lead it performs worse than the same weight in jacketed.

My Springfield 1911 will chamber everything. Clearly .358's were a bit tight. I would not be surprised if it chambered .359's.

Maybe it's hardness but if I have to cast my own out of straight Linotype to get it to work, eh, that's a lot of trouble (and expense) considering everything else I load for works fine with <whatever> alloy.

I may end up just sticking with jacketed bullets. Precision Delta's 124gr JHP (a HAP clone) aren't that much more expensive than cast. They're like $120/thousand.
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Old 09-13-2021, 08:54 PM
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I may give up. I'm not sure it's worth it. I've tried 115gr, 124gr, 147gr with half a dozen powders. The lead bullets aren't horrible but not as good as jacketed in the same weight. I'd call them "decent". Well the 115's cast were horrible. The rest were decent. If I test any given weight in lead it performs worse than the same weight in jacketed.

My Springfield 1911 will chamber everything. Clearly .358's were a bit tight. I would not be surprised if it chambered .359's.

Maybe it's hardness but if I have to cast my own out of straight Linotype to get it to work, eh, that's a lot of trouble (and expense) considering everything else I load for works fine with <whatever> alloy.

I may end up just sticking with jacketed bullets. Precision Delta's 124gr JHP (a HAP clone) aren't that much more expensive than cast. They're like $120/thousand.
I'm certainly no cast bullet expert, but there is some indication that the softest bullet that will shoot at your desired velocity without leading the bore will be the most accurate. I've seen more in the way of proof that this occurs with rifles, but I suspect it's also the case with handgun bullets.

I normally use an alloy mix that's a little softer than Lyman #2 but a bit harder than wheelweight alloy but I think it would probably work even better if it was a little softer.
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Old 09-14-2021, 10:23 AM
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Inaccurate is one thing and can be worked on by load experimentation.
But the bullets landing sideways at 60ft would seem to say something else is in play,,
unless of course any other ammo thru the pistol shoots 'straight'.

Does a very close look at the bore of the Beretta show any hint of a poor rifling job, un-usually shallow, uneven cut, anything that strikes you as not being normal.
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Old 09-14-2021, 12:15 PM
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l had an old "War Hourse" that I finally had to just bite the bullet and

buy a new barrel for, in order to get it to shoot well again.

Good luck finding the problem.
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Old 09-14-2021, 12:51 PM
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The short for caliber 9mm bullets, even up to the 147 grain bullet, really need no more than a 1 in 16" rifling pitch to be accurate when the velocity is appropriate.

A lower than normal velocity for a bullet's length and weight and the rifling pitch of the pistol will promote tumbling. Perhaps this is the issue with your 147 grain cast bullets, although that fast twist in the Beretta should be stabilizing them.

It's interesting that the slower S&W twist is fine, but the faster Beretta twist rate is not. It should be the opposite. Odd.
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Old 09-14-2021, 02:59 PM
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AJ, FWIW I have loaded 9mm for a very long time. Over many years, and many types of 9mm pistols, one thing remained constant. I never got best accuracy using cast bullets. The common NATO type chambers and 1 in 10 twist are apparently not conducive to best accuracy with cast bullets. I haven't owned a Beretta in some time, but suspect they have the NATO type chamber. I did have one Hi-Power that routinely keyholed cast bullets, but with jacketed bullets was as accurate as the several other Hi-Powers I owned with factory barrels. I tried a number of profiles, weights, diameters, powders, velocity levels, etc., but never archived accuracy equal to jacketed bullets. I even tried cast bullets in pistols like the SIG P210, FN/Browning GP Comp Hi-Power, etc. Still no luck. A dedicated cast bullet barrel used to be available for the Swiss 210s, but I never went to the trouble and expense of obtaining one. Others have reported they've developed cast bullet loads that satisfy them as to accuracy, but I admit, with one exception, I never got there. The exception was the BarSto barrels I used in 2 or 3 Hi-Powers. Those did achieve a much better level of cast bullet accuracy than any of my factory 9mm barrels.

I have an old magazine article around here, if I could find it, detailing 9mm accuracy tests in a Hi-Power using the factory 1 in 10 barrel, and 5 or 6 barrels the author had Barsto make up with different twists, rifling leades, etc. He did make mention of cast bullet keyholing with the 9mms. Seems like he did report what might be necessary to achieve good cast bullet accuracy in 9mm pistols.

Anyway, when someone reports accuracy, or even keyholing issues with 9mm pistols, I can't say I'm surprised. Barring an issue with the barrel itself, perhaps you'll find that magic cast bullet combination, and all will be well. Best of luck with your efforts.
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Old 09-14-2021, 06:23 PM
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I read about half way down the thread and then skipped the rest, so pardon any duplication. There were some good advice and some not so good, but hereís my tale based on 40 plus years of cart bullet shooting in a wide range of rifle and pistol cartridges.

1) while it is true that slow twist and heís y bullets can be a poor combination, itís not that simple. The rifling only has to be fast enough to stabilize a given bullet of a given length (length, not weight is the critical factor) at a given velocity, longer bullets just tend to be heavier).

2) A long/heavy cast bullet in a rifling with excessively fast rifling twist can be a major problem under some circumstances as the bullet can essentially skid on entering the rifling. That can create excessive leading, which then exacerbates the skidding problem and increases the leading. It doesnít take many shots to reach a point before your now virtually smooth bore leaded barrel starts key holing bullets.

3) lead hardness is a big factor. The conventional wisdom is that you need harder lead for faster velocities but that conventional wisdom is wrong, or at least a bit confused. The ally hardness needs to match the pressure of the load. For example you can take a .30 caliber bullet and cast it from wheel weights and tin and then water quench it and when it cures in 2+3 weeks youíll have a Brinnell hardness up around 32. Really hard stuff, and itíll lead really bad in a .30 caliber center fire rifle, as the bullet is way too hard to quickly obturate into the lands and grooves. While it is busy not obturating, hot, high pressure gas is flowing past the bullet and cutting lead off the bullet and then depositing it in the barrel.

Softer really is better (until itís too soft), as the bullet must be able to expand in the throat and the bore to produce a good seal in the rifling. Thereís a sweet spot in alloy hardness where the bullet both quickly obturates under the initial pressure of the load, but is still hard enough to not get stripped in the rifling.

This is where faster rifling is a disadvantage as it requires a harder alloy, especially if there is a long throat or leade that allows the bullet to pick up significant velocity before it enters the rifling.

For that reason, most serious cast bullet shooters want rifling on the end of the sufficient range to minimize the bullet hardness requirements. Itís one reason why a .38-55 with a slow twist of around 1-20 shoots heavy cast bullets much better than a .375 Win with a 1-12 twist. The .375 win can develop a lot more pressure, but you canít use it as itíll lead badly regardless of alloy used.

4) bullet diameter is the other big factor. Again the conventional wisdom says cast bullets should be .001 over groove diameter for best performance. Again, that conventional wisdom is often wrong. Itís an ideal, and a place to start but there is a lot more too it. The bullet has to obturate in the throat and leade, not the bore. If not you again get significant gas cutting and leading.

Using the .375 Win example again, Winchester used a very long and generous throat in the .375 Win chamber introduced in their BB94 so that it could in fact be fired with the longer, and larger diameter .38-55 cartridge. For the 200 and 250 gr jacketed bullets it was designed for it didnít matter. However those large throat dimensions and long leade mean cast bullets have to be selected to fit the throat, not the bore. That usually means using a .379 or .380 diameter bullet to allow it to obturate in the throat and then size itself down to bore diameter.

If you shoot a .376Ē bulletin in it gas cutting will create leading long before it reaches the bore, and if you use an alloy soft enough to obturate in the large throat, itíll strip in the fast rifling. It just wasnít meant for cast bullet use,

ó-

In short, bullet alloy hardness has to be properly matched to the pressure of the load, not the velocity, *AND* the bullet diameter has to be matched to the chamber dimensions, not the bore dimensions. Finally, the rifling needs to be fast enough to stabilize the bullet, but anything faster puts more stress on a cast bullet than slower rifling and creates a need for a harder alloy that wonít obturate as well. Those factors serve to create an increasingly narrow range where you can get good cast bullet performance, without having leading due to gas cutting on the ďtoo hardĒ end of the spectrum and leading due to stripping in the rifling at the ďtoo softĒ end of the alloy hardness spectrum.
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Old 09-14-2021, 07:15 PM
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Inaccurate is one thing and can be worked on by load experimentation.
But the bullets landing sideways at 60ft would seem to say something else is in play,,
unless of course any other ammo thru the pistol shoots 'straight'.

Does a very close look at the bore of the Beretta show any hint of a poor rifling job, un-usually shallow, uneven cut, anything that strikes you as not being normal.
I vote a potential barrel issue as well.
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Old 09-14-2021, 07:35 PM
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I don't know. On the one hand, jacketed bullets are about as hard as they come so you'd think harder lead would be better. Most 9mm barrels have such shallow rifling I could see how too-soft a bullet would have trouble grabbing the rifling. That might be why larger cast bullets do better.

I understand the "match the hardness to the pressure" but it sure seems that if that's the problem then the 9mm is just incredibly sensitive to that being "just right". I've spent the summer working on this because I had a whole bunch of "leftover" bullets that I tried and gave up on.

I think I have noticed one thing that helps, but I ran out of those bullet styles before I could confirm it. That is: use a bullet than has a clearly defined cylindrical body. That is, where the bullet has a clearly defined sharp right-angle shoulder separating the bearing surface of bullet from the decreased diameter/ogive. This might be due to my barrel. It has a significant leade in the SA 1911. It's a "Loaded Target". It feeds everything.

For example I had some SNS Casting 125gr LRN that are sold for .38/357 revolvers that clearly outshot more conventional LRN sold by commercial bullet casters. This bullet has a shoulder and I both sized it down to .357 and shot them as they were at .358.

I had some 125gr SWC with the sharp shoulder and the conical nose that seemed like they wanted to shoot well but I only had about 25. I even tried some .357 diameter 150gr SWC that were intended for revolvers. Those might be the best if I can ever figure out the OAL and the powder charge for a bullet with very little data. Some old Lyman manuals list loads but don't give you a OAL.

I'm about out of cast bullets but I'll take this up again. But I'm going to stick to those types of bullets. I figure the MBC #356125SWC looks attractive.

But before I do that again I'm going to take a "revolver break" and shoot some .38's then go through the same process with the .45 ACP as I did with the 9mm.
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Old 09-14-2021, 08:22 PM
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I vote a potential barrel issue as well.
I doubt that the Beretta shot fine with 115 grain and 124 grain bullets. It was a Sheriff's Department piece before they switch to .45 ACP Glocks.
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Old 09-14-2021, 08:23 PM
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I don't know. On the one hand, jacketed bullets are about as hard as they come so you'd think harder lead would be better. Most 9mm barrels have such shallow rifling I could see how too-soft a bullet would have trouble grabbing the rifling. That might be why larger cast bullets do better.

I understand the "match the hardness to the pressure" but it sure seems that if that's the problem then the 9mm is just incredibly sensitive to that being "just right". I've spent the summer working on this because I had a whole bunch of "leftover" bullets that I tried and gave up on.

I think I have noticed one thing that helps, but I ran out of those bullet styles before I could confirm it. That is: use a bullet than has a clearly defined cylindrical body. That is, where the bullet has a clearly defined sharp right-angle shoulder separating the bearing surface of bullet from the decreased diameter/ogive. This might be due to my barrel. It has a significant leade in the SA 1911. It's a "Loaded Target". It feeds everything.

For example I had some SNS Casting 125gr LRN that are sold for .38/357 revolvers that clearly outshot more conventional LRN sold by commercial bullet casters. This bullet has a shoulder and I both sized it down to .357 and shot them as they were at .358.

I had some 125gr SWC with the sharp shoulder and the conical nose that seemed like they wanted to shoot well but I only had about 25. I even tried some .357 diameter 150gr SWC that were intended for revolvers. Those might be the best if I can ever figure out the OAL and the powder charge for a bullet with very little data. Some old Lyman manuals list loads but don't give you a OAL.

I'm about out of cast bullets but I'll take this up again. But I'm going to stick to those types of bullets. I figure the MBC #356125SWC looks attractive.

But before I do that again I'm going to take a "revolver break" and shoot some .38's then go through the same process with the .45 ACP as I did with the 9mm.
You don't need a "book" overall cartridge length. You're already restricted by two factors: magazine length and the loaded cartridge chambering properly and without difficulty. Seat the bullets as far out as possible with these restrictions in mind. This will be a max of 1.170", give or take a little, but could be shorter depending on the design of the bullet and ogive. Your barrel, out of the gun, will tell you.
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Old 09-14-2021, 08:25 PM
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I will try some Unique and push the 147 grainer a bit faster. Have several thousand that we got from an estate sale at $5.00 for 500. If no joy will go back to lighter bullets.
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Old 09-14-2021, 09:23 PM
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I will try some Unique and push the 147 grainer a bit faster. Have several thousand that we got from an estate sale at $5.00 for 500. If no joy will go back to lighter bullets.
Or just use them up in the 39.
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Old 09-14-2021, 10:25 PM
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Or just use them up in the 39.
That may well be the case.
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Old 09-14-2021, 11:22 PM
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You don't need a "book" overall cartridge length. You're already restricted by two factors: magazine length and the loaded cartridge chambering properly and without difficulty. Seat the bullets as far out as possible with these restrictions in mind. This will be a max of 1.170", give or take a little, but could be shorter depending on the design of the bullet and ogive. Your barrel, out of the gun, will tell you.
That's basically what I'm doing I just don't like how short I'm having to go. First, I'm really only limited by the magazine length. Every bullet I've tried (and that's quite a few) in this gun will chamber way over max COAL for the magazine. Like I said in another post the barrel has a significant leade.

When I set these out to 1.16 they won't even feed manually. Imagine trying to shoot full wadcutters in the 9mm, seated way out. Sound nuts but that's not far from what I'm trying to do. The cylindrical portion of the bullet is like extending the case length if it's sticking way out of the case.

So I seated it shorter with the entire front driving band out of the case and the case mouth even with the crimp groove. It feeds most of the time but it hangs at times. I'm thinking the angle of the cartridge going into the chamber is causing the lead edge of the front driving band to catch on the chamber step. If that makes sense. Or it's just flat out too long to make the curve.

If I seat it in more, like halfway down the front driving band I'm at like 1.04". That's short but it "looks right" (?). It'll feed I'm pretty sure. But now there's an awful lot of the bullet in the case. That's a cause for concern for obvious reasons.

It's probably not going to work, but others have done it. Nobody's listed an OAL. It may just not work in this gun. If the few I fired hadn't shot so well I wouldn't bother. I'm going to test fire the 1.04"s in my convertible Blackhawk to look for excess pressure before I try them in the 1911.

Here it is at 1.04"

9 MM Barrel Twist Questions-20210914_220851-jpg
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Old 09-15-2021, 12:51 AM
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That's basically what I'm doing I just don't like how short I'm having to go. First, I'm really only limited by the magazine length. Every bullet I've tried (and that's quite a few) in this gun will chamber way over max COAL for the magazine. Like I said in another post the barrel has a significant leade.

When I set these out to 1.16 they won't even feed manually. Imagine trying to shoot full wadcutters in the 9mm, seated way out. Sound nuts but that's not far from what I'm trying to do. The cylindrical portion of the bullet is like extending the case length if it's sticking way out of the case.

So I seated it shorter with the entire front driving band out of the case and the case mouth even with the crimp groove. It feeds most of the time but it hangs at times. I'm thinking the angle of the cartridge going into the chamber is causing the lead edge of the front driving band to catch on the chamber step. If that makes sense. Or it's just flat out too long to make the curve.

If I seat it in more, like halfway down the front driving band I'm at like 1.04". That's short but it "looks right" (?). It'll feed I'm pretty sure. But now there's an awful lot of the bullet in the case. That's a cause for concern for obvious reasons.

It's probably not going to work, but others have done it. Nobody's listed an OAL. It may just not work in this gun. If the few I fired hadn't shot so well I wouldn't bother. I'm going to test fire the 1.04"s in my convertible Blackhawk to look for excess pressure before I try them in the 1911.

Here it is at 1.04"

9 MM Barrel Twist Questions-20210914_220851-jpg
I see your reason for concern and that might be taking bullet suitability in the 9mm cartridge to the extreme. While I was able to get a slightly lighter cast .38 Special SWC (Hensley & Gibbs #12) to function perfectly in a Beretta 92F, it proved to be more of a stunt than something really practical despite good accuracy and velocity. Such designs aren't popular with those who handload the 9mm and it's unlikely any company's load manual would include data for such an oddball.

That's not a criticism. It's good to see there are experimentally inclined handloaders still among us. Your bullet has lots of bearing surface and that's often an accuracy advantage. While interesting to work on such projects, we can't expect them all to turn out well. Good luck-
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Old 09-15-2021, 06:18 AM
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I see your reason for concern and that might be taking bullet suitability in the 9mm cartridge to the extreme. While I was able to get a slightly lighter cast .38 Special SWC (Hensley & Gibbs #12) to function perfectly in a Beretta 92F, it proved to be more of a stunt than something really practical despite good accuracy and velocity. Such designs aren't popular with those who handload the 9mm and it's unlikely any company's load manual would include data for such an oddball.

That's not a criticism. It's good to see there are experimentally inclined handloaders still among us. Your bullet has lots of bearing surface and that's often an accuracy advantage. While interesting to work on such projects, we can't expect them all to turn out well. Good luck-
I'm close to your #12, this is a 150gr SWC from a defunct commercial caster (Dardas) that I ordered undersized (.357) for some forgotten reason. It's shoot them in the 9mm or save them for melting.

I kind of wish I had a .38 Super.
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Old 09-15-2021, 07:39 AM
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I kind of wish I had a .38 Super.
I do have a.38 Super and a .38 ACP.
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Old 09-15-2021, 10:22 AM
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Until very recently, S&W used a 1-18.75 twist in everything 9 mm/,38/.357. Due to whining, they changed the twist in 9 mm barrels to 1-10. I doubt that rifling twist has anything to do with the issue.
I have a new mold and was trying the loads out of 2 faster twist target guns. Groups were scattered. I picked up a stock 1-18.75 twist and it shot the same bullets perfect. I am working on it and changing powder for the next test.
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