View Full Version : Help, can't find data.

December 29, 2009, 01:37 PM
I'm having trouble finding data for cast lead bullets for the .380ACP.

It seems to me that the available molds, specifically Lee, don't match the available data for lead rounds from the manufacturer. And the available lead bullet data doesn't match anyone's molds!

I only have Lee's "Modern Reloading" right now. Is there information out there, and where? I was planning to buy "Cast Bullet Handbook" but are they of any more help in this than Lee?

I'd really like to use some of the lead I have to reload my .380, but I need info.
Any advice is welcome!

December 29, 2009, 02:00 PM
My Lyman cast Bullet handbook Gives two loads for the 380 they are a 92 grain and a 121 grain.. If you want them let me know what powder you want to use.

December 29, 2009, 02:04 PM
My advice: grab a Lyman Cast Bullet manual. It is a GREAT investment and you can learn quite a bit from it. I would consider it invaluable if you cast your own bullets. Even if you aren't using Lyman molds(the manual only has loads for bullets from Lyman molds), you can get a good idea of a start load with the data in the manual if the bullets are the same or very close in weight and bearing surface.

December 29, 2009, 04:22 PM
CoyoteHunter: I've done casting before, but I'm new to it in reloading. How do I account for differences in weight/bearing surface, other words, what's the margin of error for that?

December 29, 2009, 04:28 PM
Didnt say what bullet you are using, but for the 120 gn lead bullet for a 380 or there abouts, use 2.5 gns of 231 and work up or down a bit until it works in your gun.

December 29, 2009, 04:50 PM
How do I account for differences in weight/bearing surface, other words, what's the margin of error for that?

It all depends on the cartridge being loaded. Some cartridges are more forgiving than others. The smaller cartidges usually run at higher pressures and therefore have a smaller margin of error. With Lead bullets, the main thing I concentrate on is the weight. Then from there, I will look at the style of bullet and if it is remotely close, then I will use that data. I start low and work up. Use common sense. Don't use 150 grn round nose data when loading 148 grn wadcutters (because you obviously seat the wadcutters way deeper than the RN design.) Obviously the seating depth has to be taken into account to...which you already knew. Remember....squib loads are only bad if you don't realize you have one and follow it up with another shot. ;)

As far as weight...it depends on the cartridge. Like I said, the smaller cartridges have less margin of error. For 9mm (closest thing to 380 that I load), I may use load data for a given bullet if the bullet I am using is no more than 3 or 4 grains over the specified weight. It is generally safer to use load data for a heavier bullet when actually using a lighter bullet (but you must again watch out for squibs). Say for example I have a bullet that weighs in at 140 grns, I would use the start load for 147 grn bullet if that was the closest load I could find....and work it up from there. The opposite is NOT safe. I will reiterate that seating depth is very crucial too. Pay attention to seating depth. Compare seating depths on various loads. You will get then hang of it. If you are worried, you can purchase a program called Quickload. This can help develop your own loads and seems to be very precise. If you go this route, still work up your loads unless you trust a computer program with your safety and well-being. Good luck!

December 30, 2009, 02:05 AM
Download the Reloaders Reference. http://sourceforge.net/projects/reloadersrfrnce/ It has plenty of cast data.

December 30, 2009, 08:55 AM
Download the Reloaders Reference.

Yeah, Will did a great job on this.

December 30, 2009, 06:15 PM
Thanks for the info everyone, I think that answers my questions.

I haven't posted here much, but every time I do you bunch are more than helpful! Thanks.

December 30, 2009, 06:24 PM
You never said what bullet weight you are using. I shoot 95 grain round-nosed cast bullets in my .380 using 4.2 grains of Unique (this is a max load with a top-performing powder for this caliber.) Or with 3.0 grains of Hodgdons International (a.k.a. International Clays) when I want something that doesn't sting my hand so much when I practice. Cartridge OAL for both is .980"

December 31, 2009, 10:58 AM
You never said what bullet weight you are using.

I haven't actually gotten a mold for my .380 yet. Went looking and noticed the difference in the data, didn't know what to get.