Exactly which bullet did you get? The load data is different for lead, plated and Jacketed bullets. It is also different depending on the profile of the bullet. W231 or HP38 powder works well for several pistol calibers.
Reading a manual can answer a lot of questions you might have. It can also make you want to ask some additional questions you never even thought to ask. It is hard to have too much information when you are doing something that can be dangerous.
Reloading is enjoyable for me. It isn't extremely difficult to do. You do need to have an understanding of what you are doing to stay safe and a bit more knowledge to be able to load good ammo.
Speer lists an OAL of 1.135" for 115 grain FMJ bullets and powder min 4.4 and max 4.9. I used 4.7 grains of powder with an OAL of 1.130" and it worked well. You really should work up the load for your pistol to get a good load.
I have one pistol that needs to have shorter OAL then the others do. You can make a dummy load (no primer and no powder) to check the OAL in your pistol. Also place the dummy load in the magazine and load the rest with factory ammo to see if the lenght is too long in your magazine. Drop the bullet into the barrel when it is removed from the pistol to see if it chambers properly. Last with just the dummy load in the magazine see if it feeds properly into the chamber. This should give you an idea if the OAL is correct or not.
I have move on to other powders since the time I used W231.
Last edited by Misssissippi Dave; February 15, 2013 at 08:54 PM.