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Old March 6, 2011, 08:06 AM   #1
Cascade1911
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Berry's or Hard Cast Bullets?

Of the two which do you all like shooting? I'm loading for .38/357 (Colt Trooper Mk 3 Revolver), 9mm (Ruger P85) and .45 ACP (Springfield Mil-Spec 1911). Loading for target, Steel Challenge, maybe IDPA or Cowboy Action. (not serious, just for fun)

Price of the Berry's seems little more than the hard cast. Do you trade copper fouling for lead? How about their Hollow Points? any good for a self defense load?
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Old March 6, 2011, 09:22 AM   #2
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I've shot some hard-cast and a LOT of Berry's plated. Either is good if you pay attention to how you load for them.

Personally I really like the Berry's bullets, especially the "double struck" stuff.
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Old March 6, 2011, 09:28 AM   #3
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I've shot a good number of berrys and raniers plated and they are nicely made, but it is hard to beat the cost of hard cast lead. Just don't try to load them to the max velocity and you won't have any leading problems.

A couple of good hard cast suppliers are Oregon trail, Penn, Missouri, and mastercast.net....of course, you can cast your own and get even cheaper....
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Old March 6, 2011, 09:32 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeSpectre
Personally I really like the Berry's bullets, especially the "double struck" stuff.
I'll second it for Berry's double struck bullets.
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Old March 6, 2011, 10:05 AM   #5
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I shoot of alot of Berry's bullets, including their hollowpoints. Accuracy is fine, but I wouldn't rely on them to expand.

You'll need to watch your velocities in some calibers. If pushed too fast, then plated bullets can strip their plating, which means bad accuracy. I've hit around 1200 to 1250 fps in my pistols without problems. I don't think I'd push them over 1300 fps, though. For my 115 grain .38 Super/9mm carbine loads and .44 magnum rifle loads, I generally go with a jacket bullets from Montana Gold. (http://www.montanagoldbullet.com/)

It's not an issue for .45 ACP or 9mm, but you're probably best to stick with 158 grain loads in the .357 Magnum. It's no big deal for me, I actually prefer the heavier weights the best. Accuracy has been great in my Model 66 firing 158 gr Berry's at 1150 fps.
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Old March 6, 2011, 10:29 AM   #6
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I gave up on plated when the price went higher than jacketed. Now I shoot Real jacketed, lead or Black bullets.
Can't bring myself to pay more for plated than jacketed.
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Old March 6, 2011, 10:42 AM   #7
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to Steve4102

Powder Valley lists the 230 Gr RN-DS for $113/1000. I haven't seen hard cast cheaper. Where can I get FMJ for that price?
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Old March 6, 2011, 10:56 AM   #8
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I have shot some plated 44 bullets and they worked ok but I was not impressed with the accuracy.
What I use in both rifles and hand guns are Penn bullets. I have pushed his Match grade in a 44 mag rifle over 1800 without a gas check and had no leading problems. If you’re going to shot for accuracy and plinking go with his target grades which are rated up to 1000.
The other advantage is that you can order bullets to a specific diameter to fit your gun.
He will send you samples so you don’t have to buy a thousand to test them.
For a Keith type bullet in 158 GR match your talking 72$ for a thousand.
Do a search on TFL on Penn bullets and check out what others have said about Penn. The other good thing is you can call Penn and talk to the owner. He is not just a bullet maker he is also a shooter and reloader and has helped me a lot getting a working deer round for a Ruger 77/44 which I have written several threads about.
http://www.pennbullets.com/38/38-caliber.html
You know how the saying goes,,, Better lead than dead

Last edited by Ozzieman; March 6, 2011 at 11:29 AM.
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Old March 6, 2011, 11:02 AM   #9
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I shoot mostly Missouri Bullets in nearly everything (.380, .357/.38, .40S&W, & .45 acp.) I also use Rainier plated in my 9mm and sometimes in the .357. They all work well.
Missouri Bullets are a great company to deal with and the product is a great value. Are they the "best?" I can't say, but for the money they are outstanding.
When I see Rainier on sale I will order some more often than not. They are great in my 9mm and handy for some of my warmer .357 stuff.
I have a couple thousand .357 Rainier available, I find myself using cast most of the time. As long as you aren't pushing Max power loads, cast will probably work for 80% of what you need.
I shoot what is essentially a +P+ .38 load in my .357 most of the time and leading is minor. A bore brush & Hoppe's is enough. In my .45 loads, there is usually just a tiny bit of leading in front of the chamber. See: Bore brush & Hoppe's.
Of course, YMMV.
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Old March 6, 2011, 11:19 AM   #10
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OK, I'll keep Penn and Missouri in mind, prices look good. Ozzie, so you think a good hard cast is more accurate. Good to know.

Last edited by Cascade1911; March 6, 2011 at 11:24 AM.
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Old March 6, 2011, 11:38 AM   #11
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Ozzie, so you think a good hard cast is more accurate.
In the small number of plated bullets I have tried, yes.
But overall it’s the price that draws me to lead. I shoot thousands of rounds each year in 44 special alone and for me price is number one with quality a real close second.
The reason I tried plated was the indoor range (2009) went to "NO LEAD" and late last year went with "No reloads".
The owner is a jerk and several people heard his original reason for no lead was his poor ammo sales and when that didn’t work he went with no reloads.
The problem now is that not only is his ammo sales poor but the range is utilized about half as much.
What got most people upset was that the NO lead was only for center fire.
When I asked about 22 LR, all they would say is "That’s different."
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Old March 6, 2011, 12:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Powder Valley lists the 230 Gr RN-DS for $113/1000. I haven't seen hard cast cheaper. Where can I get FMJ for that price?
http://www.missouribullet.com/result...5&secondary=13

http://www.precisiondelta.com/product.php?indx=5

http://www.rozedist.com/

http://shootersconnectionstore.com/B...lets-C702.aspx

http://shootersconnectionstore.com/Z...pped-P576.aspx

http://www.wideners.com/itemdetail.c...ir=278|281|299
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Old March 6, 2011, 12:50 PM   #13
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Thanks Steve. I've seen people on here talk of the Zero bullets. Are they good?
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Old March 6, 2011, 03:48 PM   #14
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G E N E R A L L Y speaking, Berry's plated bullets are going to get to you cheaper than most jacketed bullets anywhere on earth. They don't beat jacketed by a lot, but they typically beat 'em in price to your door, depending on where you buy your Berry's bullets.

Roze Distributing (Zero bullets) and Precision Delta are the two exceptions.

Roze is sold out constantly, and new stock appears quickly and without warning and disappears even more quickly than it appeared in the first place. The bullets are great, the prices are terrific. Don't expect Nosler or Hornady XTP out of these, but they are true jacketed and they run.

Precision Delta is also a helluva deal. Their bullets aren't really pretty and you need to order a mix & match minimum of 2,000 bullets to even get in the ballgame. Also, if you want jacketed from P-D, you choose from 9mm, some .40 or some .45. There's no other sizes. And their customer service might leave you wanting a bit... they run out of stock without warning and your order will be held or arrive with half of it -- sometimes they let you in on it, sometimes it takes them a bit. Their selection in jacketed is slim and you better be sure you want it if you are buying a minimum of two THOUSAND of them.

If they have what you want and it's in stock, either Roze or P-D is a phenomenal deal in jacketed.

Back to reality for a minute... if you compare every other true jacketed bullet out there, save maybe for some of the Montana Gold (not as cheap as Roze or P-D) then the prices are much higher than Berry's almost no matter where you get them. Winchester bulk, Hornady, Remington, even the new bulk Magtech? All of this stuff is more expensive than Berry's.

Berry's also offers .32 cal and .380 specific bullets, and my favorite, their .30 Carbine slug, rated to 1,900 FPS. You can't beat those by buying jacketed.

Berry's will cost you more if you pick them up in Cabela's -- but still cheaper than any jacketed bullet you will find in that same Cabela's.

Make no mistake, plated bullets are NOT jacketed and if you expect jacketed, you'll lose. Instead, expect a cast lead bullet substitute that won't lead your barrel due to the sized diameter or the BHN hardness or the load you concocted. Also, expect a bullet that any/every range will let you shoot indoors while your cast lead bullet handloads are told to go back to the trunk of your car.

Me, I shoot a bunch of cast lead. I shoot it in nice weather when I'm outdoors. In the crappy weather when I'm on an indoor range, it's all plated and jacketed for me, and Berry's makes up the bulk of that.

Also, Berry's is all I shoot out of my .30 Carb Blackhawk.
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Old March 6, 2011, 04:31 PM   #15
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How can Powder Valley be about $20 cheaper per thousand on Berry's plated than directly from Berry's? Is it the shipping and handling charges that will be the equalizer?

I have to say some of the prices at Powder Valley look very good.
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Old March 6, 2011, 07:44 PM   #16
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Powder valley has very reasonable shipping rates. Cost me a total of $75 for 1000 berrys, delivered.
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Old March 6, 2011, 07:47 PM   #17
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Berry's direct are great people to deal with and you can get smaller quantities if that's your tastes. Shipping is free over $50 worth of product for most of what they sell. But Berry's admits right up front that they don't want to undercut their biggest retailers so TJ Conevera and Powder Valley both have better prices than from Berry's direct.

Shipping doesn't hurt much from Powder Valley on bullets when you pile up a big order. I just put in an order one week ago and if you can keep it under 78 pounds, it's $12 for shipping.

For smaller quantities, or a variety of different shapes and sizes, you can order 250-ct boxes from Berry's direct that you can't get from the bulk dealers.
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Old March 7, 2011, 08:40 AM   #18
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I didn't see Lazercast menchond. How have they worked compeard to the ones that have been talked about?
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Old March 7, 2011, 07:05 PM   #19
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I cannot think of and manufacturer of anything anywhere that would be so stupid as to sell direct to customers at a discount if they have a dealer network they depend upon------business suicide...........

I have been shooting Berry's hard cast and plated 185 gr. SWCs in both my 1911 match guns--the guns are match built the shooter is not, at least not anymore. I've been buying the hard cast direct since the last few timed I looked for them no dealers had stock. I shoot handguns indoors only and use gas checks. When I run out of gas checks I will go back to the plated bullets as I can see no difference in accuracy in my guns. I've pretty much decided to use Berry's in all my handgun loads for the same reason.


Those people who actually have proper rests like the Ransom for testing handgun loads seem to agree and in fact that's where I heard about Berry in the first place. The only reason I can see that a Berry .45 SWC would have been less accurate than the same unplated lead Berry was that it made before Berry decided to make ALL their plated bullets double struck.
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Old March 7, 2011, 10:35 PM   #20
steve4102
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Quote:
I have been shooting Berry's hard cast
WOW, $116/k for hard cast, no thanks. I'll stick with Missouri for about $30 less.
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Old March 7, 2011, 10:53 PM   #21
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Quote:
I didn't see Lazercast menchond. How have they worked compeard to the ones that have been talked about?
Oregon Trails Lasercast are the best cast bullets I've ever used, but they cost too much. (they used to be reasonably priced maybe 5 or 6 years ago) You can get very good bullets elsewhere that are almost as good for less than half the price.
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Old March 8, 2011, 07:15 AM   #22
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zxcvbob thanks for setting me strate on that. If I can save on other brands that's what Ill do.
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Old March 8, 2011, 11:55 AM   #23
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We are very careful and hold our pricing so the dealers and distributors can make their margins. Some of the distributors like Powder Valley work on a smaller margin and give great pricing. Occasionally we make prototypes or have seconds that might have blemishes that we sell at a discount direct. We have a 158gr RN in the .38cal that our ICOR shooters really like, they feed very well with speedloaders.
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Old March 8, 2011, 12:07 PM   #24
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I would always use a jacketed or plated bullet over a lead bullet ...

I think Berry's makes a pretty good product for the money / although I prefer a true jacketed bullet.

I wouldn't recommend reloading defensive ammo / I think most of the experts will tell you to carry commercial ammo ( and practice with your reloads ) - you only need to run enough of the brand of comml defensive ammo thru your gun to know that it feeds reliably. I buy a new box of defensive ammo about every 5 years ...and shoot up the old box. And in between I shoot thousands of reloads ...
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Old March 9, 2011, 04:50 PM   #25
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Jay nailed it

Jay, we supply Powder Valley with our line of cast bullets and they sell our bullets for less than our retail price.

Our accountant is worried that they're going to run us out of business :-)

Powder Valley is a great company.

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