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Old 01-08-2017, 12:21 AM
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Default fmj vs plated data question

Why is the recommendation for plated bullets, "use mid range jacketed data" instead of following FMJ exactly. I understand that plated shouldn't be driven to FMJ velocities but with very few exceptions FMJ max data doesn't get over 1200 FPS anyway.

Do plated achieve higher velocities that FMJ if you used exactly the same components, powder and charge?

What makes a plated bullets react different than FMJ all other variables the same?

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Old 01-08-2017, 12:26 AM
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A plated projectile has less friction than a true Jacketed projectile.

A plated projectile will achieve a higher muzzle velocity than a true Jacketed projectile with the same load data.

MANY max performance loads for jacketed projectiles in handgun cartridges exceed 1200 FPS.
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Old 01-08-2017, 12:44 AM
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The Plated bullet was designed for a low price practice/target load bullet, for shooters.

If you want 1200 plus get the double plated bullets that cost a little more or move up to the higher priced Honady factory type bullets.

As for loading data.......
they had to start some where.
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Old 01-08-2017, 01:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colt_saa View Post
A plated projectile has less friction than a true Jacketed projectile.

A plated projectile will achieve a higher muzzle velocity than a true Jacketed projectile with the same load data.

MANY max performance loads for jacketed projectiles in handgun cartridges exceed 1200 FPS.
Why does the plated have less friction? Is it the thickness, the process or both?

Sorry, I wasn't very clear with the statement about max data not going over 1200 FPS. I had just looked in my Hornady, Seer and Lyman manuals and was referring to .45 and 9mm load data in those manuals. Most of that data for FMJ stays under 1200 FPS.
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Old 01-08-2017, 01:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevada Ed View Post
The Plated bullet was designed for a low price practice/target load bullet, for shooters.

If you want 1200 plus get the double plated bullets that cost a little more or move up to the higher priced Honady factory type bullets.

As for loading data.......
they had to start some where.
Na, not really looking to get 1200 plus velocities, just curious.
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Old 01-08-2017, 01:53 AM
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As I understand it the plated bullets are swaged from soft lead and then electro plated with a very thin layer of copper - just a few molecules thick.

Jacketed bullets have a thin copper shell several thousandths of an inch thick which is then filled with lead (by casting I believe). So the jacketed bullets are significantly harder than the plated bullets.

So, being softer, it takes less force for the lands and grooves to deform the surface and "squeeze down" the diameter of the bullet, so there is less drag (friction) as the bullet moves down the barrel. That is why they achieve a little higher velocity with the same weight bullet and powder charge.

Cast lead bullets, being even softer, will achieve even higher velocity for the same bullet weight and powder charge.

I believe that the mid range jacketed data recommendation is to make sure that the starting loads don't exceed the bullet's speed limitations. Since there is little (or no) data specifically for plated bullets, this is in line with the general recommendation to start at the lower end of the range and work your way up.

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Old 01-08-2017, 04:28 AM
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Quote:
flyrobb wrote:
Why is the recommendation for plated bullets, "use mid range jacketed data" instead of following FMJ exactly.
Check the diameter of your plated bullets with a micrometer. You will generally (there are exceptions) find that plated bullets run at or near the diameter of un-jacketed lead bullets and as such may be 5/10,000 or 1/1,000 inch LARGER than jacketed bullets. You must use a smaller powder charge since the powder will first have to essentially swage the bullet to the diameter of the barrel.

For example, for 9mm Luger, the plated bullets I have are generally 0.356 inch in diameter while the jacketed bullets are 0.355 inch in diameter. I do have some plated bullets that are 0.355 inch in diameter and they load fine using the data for FMJ 0.355 bullets, but the 0.356 bullets have to have a reduced powder load.
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevada Ed View Post
The Plated bullet was designed for a low price practice/target load bullet, for shooters.

If you want 1200 plus get the double plated bullets that cost a little more or move up to the higher priced Honady factory type bullets.

As for loading data.......
they had to start some where.
Or try case coated bullets. You can push them hard and they are barely more expensive than plain cast lead bullets.
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:25 AM
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Default Cast lead hardness.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
...
Cast lead bullets, being even softer, will achieve even higher velocity for the same bullet weight and powder charge....
Cast lead can be from dead soft to Brinell hardness in the high 20s. Less friction is the result of the high lubricity of lead over the low lubricity of copper.

In shooting plain cast bullets, harder bullets generally allow higher velocities than softer lead. coatings can replace the lube in groove lubrication of plain cast bullets.
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hdwhit View Post
Check the diameter of your plated bullets with a micrometer. You will generally (there are exceptions) find that plated bullets run at or near the diameter of un-jacketed lead bullets and as such may be 5/10,000 or 1/1,000 inch LARGER than jacketed bullets. You must use a smaller powder charge since the powder will first have to essentially swage the bullet to the diameter of the barrel.

For example, for 9mm Luger, the plated bullets I have are generally 0.356 inch in diameter while the jacketed bullets are 0.355 inch in diameter. I do have some plated bullets that are 0.355 inch in diameter and they load fine using the data for FMJ 0.355 bullets, but the 0.356 bullets have to have a reduced powder load.
You are correct. The Extreme 124 plated are .356 where their 124 FMJ are .355. (As a side note I notice Extremes 124 FMJ bullet profile is more rounded that others I compared it to.)

I just get think'n about this stuff and need to know. Great explanations guys, thanks.

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Old 01-08-2017, 11:27 AM
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Flyrobb, most of the manufacturers of plated bullets offer TP (thick plate) or HP (heavy plate-don't confuse with hollow point:P). These heavier plated bullets are supposed to stand up to being pushed harder. It also seems like I read somewhere that the Speer TMJ is a heavy plated bullet. I suppose the reason for pushing them harder is to mimic a SD loading for cheap practice.
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:57 AM
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There is a lot of variation in what's available in a plated bullet. I shoot USPSA Open in 9mm Major Power Factor (124 bullet at 1400 fps) Standard plated bullets keyhole and look like I was shooting a shotgun at the target. I used RMR match plated bullets for a long time and then tried some Rainier .38 super match bullets (also plated) and found that they are more accurate out of my gun. Now I use the RMR for my 9 Minor loads and the Rainier for my major loads. I've pushed the 115gr bullets to 1500 fps but didn't like the feel of that load so I went back to 124's. The 1200 fps ceiling on standard plated bullets is accurate and they work well under that speed, but there are other options depending on what you're trying to accomplish.
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Old 01-08-2017, 01:19 PM
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"Or try case coated bullets." per post #8

True , the "Other" white meat will also work well...........

and they come in Green, Red, Yellow, Blue, Orange, Gray, Black
and don't forget the Pink ones !!
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:17 PM
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I'm working on reloading Berry 230 gr 45 plated RN bullets. The Berry's FAQs say use the lead or low to mid FMJ loads. For CFE Pistol, the lead RN are 5.4-6.2. The only other data they have is for FMJ FP, which is 6.0-6.8.

My though was to start at 5.4 and work up, likely to mo more than 6.2. Sound reasonable?

Would the data for FMJ RN and FMJ FP be the same?

I don't have a chronograph, nor place to use one. Is there any other way to tell, if I'm reaching the limit, other than inspecting the case, or going by the accuracy/feel of the shot?
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:19 PM
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Ref: Set your sights on pistol reloading data | Hodgdon Reloading
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:31 PM
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When I do a new load with plated that doesn't pretty much exactly match either the lead or FMJ data, I like to start at the mid-point of the lead data, rather then the mid point of the higher range jacketed data. I don't start at the bottom of the lead range, because the plated bullet's higher friction could result in a powder throw that was .1 gr under the intended charge weight that could be too low - so low that the round becomes a squib. Not probable maybe, but still possible.

So the mid ranges for the two bullets you are comparing here are 6.4 for the FMJ and 5.8 for the lead. If it were me I'd start with the 5.8. But that's just me and my approach. Others may have different recommendations.

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Old 01-08-2017, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevada Ed View Post
"Or try case coated bullets." per post #8

True , the "Other" white meat will also work well...........

and they come in Green, Red, Yellow, Blue, Orange, Gray, Black
and don't forget the Pink ones !!
So many choices, so little time...pink might be the one. I did buy a few sample packs of Bayou coated and they seem to be very good in my limited trials.
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:40 PM
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"It also seems like I read somewhere that the Speer TMJ is a heavy plated bullet." c/o post eleven;

I have shot the Speer TMJ 147gr bullet and don't know if it is a
heavy plated or standard but it is .355" dia. and .643" long.

With a long OAL of 1.165" is does well for light target work from
725fps to a high of 835fps.

The shorter 1.13" OAL by Speer data can reach highs of 971 to 975
with the slower powders that are compressed or close with a ball powder.

This heavy weight is far form making 1200fps but the lighter 135gr might be able to get there in a long barrel........
but I am shooting a 3.5" barrel.

However I see no need for 1200fps in the lighter bullets, even
for just practice loads with a FMJ type bullet.
My max fps acc. load with the 115gr Extreme is 1039fps and the 124 at 1014fps.
As a note, my 125gr coated liked 1015-1046fps for middle of the road accuracy
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
When I do a new load with plated that doesn't pretty much exactly match either the lead or FMJ data, I like to start at the mid-point of the lead data, rather then the mid point of the higher range jacketed data. I don't start at the bottom of the lead range, because the plated bullet's higher friction could result in a powder throw that was .1 gr under the intended charge weight that could be too low - so low that the round becomes a squib. Not probable maybe, but still possible.

So the mid ranges for the two bullets you are comparing here are 6.4 for the FMJ and 5.8 for the lead. If it were me I'd start with the 5.8. But that's just me and my approach. Others may have different recommendations.
This is pretty safe advice, but when I first started reloading and I was doing an educated guess on my loads that I could not find specific load data for, I quickly learned that I'm not that guy who could dial in my loads by feel, and spending a C note on a chronograph was a good investment. Just my humble opinion
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by LD-Ordie View Post
This is pretty safe advice, but when I first started reloading and I was doing an educated guess on my loads that I could not find specific load data for, I quickly learned that I'm not that guy who could dial in my loads by feel, and spending a C note on a chronograph was a good investment. Just my humble opinion
Agreed 100%. Safety has got to come first.
I picked up an inexpensive chrony last year myself.

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Old 01-09-2017, 05:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colt_saa View Post
A plated projectile will achieve a higher muzzle velocity than a true Jacketed projectile with the same load data.
This article tested various bullet types & found that plated bullets generally are the slowest.

How Fast is Your Bullet.pdf - article

In the recent .45 Auto Rim +P article (Handloader #306), the 230gr Speer Gold Dot HP (plated) was slower, across the board, than the 230gr Hornady XTP (jacketed) using the same load in the same pistol.

Example: using 8.5gr/Power Pistol the GD clocked 1011 fps vs the XTP's 1032 fps.

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Old 01-09-2017, 08:19 AM
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FWIW, I agree on the inexpensive chrono advice.

I started reloading in the late 80's, and finally purchased a chrono this past summer. It certainly opened my eyes. Turns out I wasn't shooting what I thought I was shooting. A valuable tool indeed.

Think hard about purchasing one.
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Old 01-09-2017, 08:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colt_saa View Post
A plated projectile has less friction than a true Jacketed projectile.

A plated projectile will achieve a higher muzzle velocity than a true Jacketed projectile with the same load data.

MANY max performance loads for jacketed projectiles in handgun cartridges exceed 1200 FPS.
I can't agree with this. Because Copper is Copper and the Coefficient of Friction for copper on steel will be a Constant no matter how it is applied. IMO the reason for the "Velocity Limit" is purely Structural, as in the Structural Strength of the Jacket. Push a soft lead bullet with a thin copper jacket too fast and the speed of Rotation will cause the bullet to fragment once it leaves the barrel. This the reason for the thickness of the jacket having a limiting factor on the produced Velocity. Plating can be a somewhat time consuming process and as a result in many cases a plated Jacket would be thinner than a jacket stamped from a nugget of copper. However Speer uses Elecro Plating to produce the Jackets on their Gold Dot bullets and those bullets are capable of some rather high velocities in some calibers. That plated jacket is also strong enough to keep the bullet in one piece during some pretty extreme impact events. In addition many Plated bullet suppliers are now offering "double plated" bullets rated for velocities up to 1500 fps. so that old 1200 fps velocity limit may in time go away.

Personally, I'm not a fan of maximum velocity loads, I work my loads up to produce the best accuracy and have found that point usually falls somewhere between the 50 and 80% points in the span between Min and Max. Because of this I really don't have any concerns about the produced velocity of my loads with the exception of the 357 Magnum. For 357 Magnum I use the excellent Hornady XTP and while a bit expensive have found it is a very accurate shooting bullet.
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Old 01-09-2017, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BLUEDOT37 View Post
This article tested various bullet types & found that plated bullets generally are the slowest.

In the recent .45 Auto Rim +P article (Handloader #306), the 230gr Speer Gold Dot HP (plated) was slower, across the board, than the 230gr Hornady XTP (jacketed) using the same load in the same pistol.
While the Speer line of Gold Dot Bonded projectiles do attach the jacket to the lead via a plating process, Gold Dots are hardly what hand loaders typically refer to as plated bullets.

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Old 01-09-2017, 10:06 AM
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I can't agree with this. Because Copper is Copper and the Coefficient of Friction for copper on steel will be a Constant no matter how it is applied.
For this statement to be true and the only factor involved, we would have to be talking about copper vs. copper (which we are not) and the pressure of the copper against the barrel walls would need to be the same in both test samples (which it is not)

Traditionally copper is the main component of most jacketing materiel used in small arms, but it is not the only component. Sometimes brass is a major component, sometimes nickel, in some cases even steel. The alloy used varies from manufacturer to manufacturer and has evolved over the decades.

The thickness of the plating vs. jacketing also effects how easily the projectile can deform thus altering how much pressure is exerted outwardly against the barrel walls.

Projectile jackets are usually many dozen times thicker than the plating on projectiles available for hand loaders. Lead alloy (or other core materiel) is then poured into the already formed jacket.

The bulk of the plated projectiles used by hand loaders have soft swagged lead cores that are thinly plated

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Old 01-09-2017, 10:43 AM
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From my experience loading 45 ACP I've noted that the plated bullets tend to run slower than hard cast lead.

230 gr. LRN / 1.275”OAL
WLP Primers / Win Brass
5.6 gr. W231
Ave: 882 fps ES:11 SD:5

200 gr. H&G #68 LSWC / 1.255”OAL
WLP Primers / Win Brass
5.8 gr. W231
Ave: 950 fps ES:18 SD:8

200 gr. X-Treme P-RN / 1.255” OAL
WLP Primers / Win Brass
5.8 gr. W231
Ave: 860 fps ES:48 SD:19

200 gr. X-Treme P-RN / 1.255” OAL
WLP Primers / Win Brass
6.4 gr. W231
Ave: 930 fps ES:60 SD:26
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Old 01-09-2017, 12:15 PM
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I believe that the mid range jacketed data recommendation is to make sure that the starting loads don't exceed the bullet's speed limitations. Since there is little (or no) data specifically for plated bullets, this is in line with the general recommendation to start at the lower end of the range and work your way up.
I shoot some plated bullets in my Blackhawk. If I exceed a specific fps, the rpms will cause the bullet to come apart. Speeds akin to 45acp velocities, make for acceptable groups; typical 44mag velocities, will may not hit the target at hunting distances... And if it does hit, it may only be a part of the bullet.
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Old 01-09-2017, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
When I do a new load with plated that doesn't pretty much exactly match either the lead or FMJ data, I like to start at the mid-point of the lead data, rather then the mid point of the higher range jacketed data. I don't start at the bottom of the lead range, because the plated bullet's higher friction could result in a powder throw that was .1 gr under the intended charge weight that could be too low - so low that the round becomes a squib. Not probable maybe, but still possible.

So the mid ranges for the two bullets you are comparing here are 6.4 for the FMJ and 5.8 for the lead. If it were me I'd start with the 5.8. But that's just me and my approach. Others may have different recommendations.
I had made up 5 rounds each at 5.4, 5.6, and 5.8. Sounds like I need to do 6.0, 6.2, and 6.4. Will need to see what I should do with the 5.4 loads.
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Old 01-10-2017, 01:22 AM
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This article seems to be contradictory to the idea plated have higher muzzle velocity. Based on that article seems you could follow FMJ data with plated and be safe.
Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by colt_saa
A plated projectile will achieve a higher muzzle velocity than a true Jacketed projectile with the same load data
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Originally Posted by BLUEDOT37 View Post
This article tested various bullet types & found that plated bullets generally are the slowest.

How Fast is Your Bullet.pdf - article

In the recent .45 Auto Rim +P article (Handloader #306), the 230gr Speer Gold Dot HP (plated) was slower, across the board, than the 230gr Hornady XTP (jacketed) using the same load in the same pistol.

Example: using 8.5gr/Power Pistol the GD clocked 1011 fps vs the XTP's 1032 fps.
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Old 01-10-2017, 02:26 AM
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I have never bought into less friction means higher vel. Pressure pushing the bullet down the bore causes velocity. So less friction, less vel, unless you put more powder behind it. I tested this with identical moly coated bullets, you get less vel than uncoated. As long as you are not using max fmj data, you are fine with plated, even a bit beyond 1200fps.
My theory is the softer lead core expands or obturates a bit more to give a better seal in the bore. Same reason a lead bullet goes faster with the same powder charge. One day I will get a pressure trace & prove it.
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Old 01-10-2017, 04:05 AM
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While the Speer line of Gold Dot Bonded projectiles do attach the jacket to the lead via a plating process, Gold Dots are hardly what hand loaders typically refer to as plated bullets.
LOL, well if they did they wouldn't be technically wrong.

Agreed, they are gourmet/premium plated bullets.

Speer #14 (pg. 729) calls it "a computer-controlled electro-chemical plating system". Even Speer acknowledges they have limitations over their cup & core, conventional jacketed bullets but obviously better than "typical" target plated bullets most people relate to.

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Old 01-10-2017, 05:12 PM
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I was shooting polymer coated 125 grain lead bullets with my 357 Henry using 3.5 grains of Trail Boss powder. I don't think the velocity was much more than 850 to 900 fps. But they were shooting 1" groups at 25 yards. Point is that when shooting targets just for the fun it - it's the accuracy that counts as well as cost. That load would be great for rabbits.
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