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hdwhit
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Posted: January 11 2018 at 3:14pm | IP Logged Quote hdwhit

I have been reloading for more than 40 years. The first two years with the "classic" Lee Loader and the last 38 with an RCBS Reloader Special press.

Recently, I was given some 9mm brass. And if I had 9mm brass, I had to load for it. And if I loaded for it, I had to be able to test what I made. You get the idea.

Not familiar with the different projectiles, I ordered a mixed lot of pulled plated and jacketed bullets to gain some experience. I ended up with a nice assortment of 115, 124 and 148 grain bullets in round nose and hollow point.

Beginning with some HP-38, the Starting Load was tool light to cycle my pistol, but I eventually laddered my way up to something that was reliable.

My question has to do with the 115 grain bullets versus the 124 grain bullets. Or more properly, why are there two bullets so close together in weight? I know I don't have a lot of experience with the cartridge yet, but there just doesn't seem to be much difference between the two loading. Is there a reason or is it just down to personal preference?
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Desert Eagle41
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Posted: January 11 2018 at 5:01pm | IP Logged Quote Desert Eagle41

The way I understand it is the 115 was the original 9mm round and then others were invented. I could be wrong. Craig

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LAH
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Posted: January 12 2018 at 5:38pm | IP Logged Quote LAH

The difference between the 115 & 124 is 9 grains like
you say. While that seems close look at the 38 special
were the 2 popular weights are 148 & 158 a difference of
10 grains.

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RT58
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Posted: January 13 2018 at 11:14am | IP Logged Quote RT58

hdwhit wrote:
My question has to do with the 115 grain bullets versus the 124 grain bullets. Or more properly, why are there two bullets so close together in weight? I know I don't have a lot of experience with the cartridge yet, but there just doesn't seem to be much difference between the two loading. Is there a reason or is it just down to personal preference?


A lot of it has to do with marketing hype, every manufacturer wants the best selling bullet. But it is not unusual for bullets from different makers to vary in weight, even so, they will often copy others that sell well.

But is always boils down to personal preference. Due to the 9mms actions they don't always work well with a wide variety of bullet styles, so you may be limited there, but look at the data for the various bullets you are interested in see if there is any real difference in ballistics between them.
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mikld
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Posted: January 13 2018 at 11:48am | IP Logged Quote mikld

I have no idea where the 115 grain bullet popularity came
from. I've seen 115 gr ammo for sale advertised as
"military spec." but I'm not sure about that. I read
somewhere the original loading for the 9mm
Parabellum was with a 125 gr. truncated cone. I believe
the military/NATO uses a 124 gr FMJ now. In my 3, 9mm
pistols, I've found 124/125 gr JHP and cast LRNFP to work
best...

Edited by mikld on January 13 2018 at 11:51am


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Paul B.
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Posted: January 13 2018 at 1:19pm | IP Logged Quote Paul B.

I believe the 115 gr. bullets were a response to those wanting more
velocity.
Paul B.
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hdwhit
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Posted: January 13 2018 at 1:29pm | IP Logged Quote hdwhit

I know that when the British adopted the 9mm (which seems to have been mostly for submachinegun use), they standardized on a 115 grain bullet (S.A. Ball Mk2) and when the Empire dissolved, the arms works in the former colonies continued making the ammunition they already knew how to make. I figure that meant there has been a lot of "inertia" keeping people worldwide hanging on to the 115 grain bullet.

But today, I seem to mostly see 124 and 147 grain bullets in the stores and that got me to wondering if there was a technical reason for the shift that I wasn't aware of.

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