I'm still an inexperienced reloader, and I think I figured out the answer to my question, but I want to confirm it with you experts before I blow myself up...
I was overjoyed today to find a place locally where I can buy inexpensive bullets in bulk. Yay! Since I occasionally go to an indoor range, I thought I would pick up the Berry's plated bullets (in 125-grain weight, since I want softer recoil for my wife)... much to my chagrin, that is, since I can't find loading data for a 125-grain lead bullet to start with. Sadness ensued...
Not to be completely daunted, however, I went to the Berry's web site
, where they explain how to load their bullets. They say:
When loading plated bullets we have found best results using low- to mid-range jacketed data in the load manual.
I'd like to load these 125 grain FPs with 38 Special loads for my 357 Mag Taurus Tracker, which has a delightful 6" barrel. I have on-hand Bullseye and Herco powders. I looked up the loads for jacketed 125-grain bullets from Hornady, Sierra, Speer, and Accurate, and found that they look like so:
- Hornady - 4.5 - 5.3 grains of Bullseye
- Sierra - 4.6 - 5.1 grains of Bullseye
- Speer - 4.5 - 4.8 grains of Bullseye
- Alliant - 4.4 - 4.8 grains of Bullseye
An interesting exception is a Lyman load for a 121-grain LRN, which suggests 2.8 - 4.6 grains of Bullseye. Yet... these are not LRNs, and they weigh 4 grains extra, and they don't have the two lubricating grooves, and so on.
Given the quote from Berry's above, this appears to suggest that I load my plated bullets with ~4.5 grains of Bullseye to start. Am I seeing this right?
All over the Internet, I see people saying they use from 3.0 (sometimes less!) to >5 grains of Bullseye, but from some of the things these anonymous Internet people say, I'm nervous to trust them.