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Alright my brother and I are trying to reload for our first time. We have Rainier Ballistics 115gr jhp (9mm). The powder we are using is Unique, and the primers are CCI 500. I have an xdm 9mm, he has a glock 17. We want to load it, so it has just enough enough power to cycle the gun, as these are going to be used as target loads, and we want to use as little powder as possible. I have found instructions on 115gr bullets with Unique powder, but none specific with the Rainier jhp. I have three questions:
1. Is there any info about specifics of the amount of powder using the, Rainier(jhp 115gr) + CCI 500 + Unique, combo?
2. If not then does anyone have suggestions on the least amount of powder to use to make my xdm 9 and glock 17 cycle?
3. A little off topic, but what are the negatives on using lead bullets?
 

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Alright my brother and I are trying to reload for our first time. We have Rainier Ballistics 115gr jhp (9mm). The powder we are using is Unique, and the primers are CCI 500. I have an xdm 9mm, he has a glock 17. We want to load it, so it has just enough enough power to cycle the gun, as these are going to be used as target loads, and we want to use as little powder as possible. I have found instructions on 115gr bullets with Unique powder, but none specific with the Rainier jhp. I have three questions:
1. Is there any info about specifics of the amount of powder using the, Rainier(jhp 115gr) + CCI 500 + Unique, combo?
2. If not then does anyone have suggestions on the least amount of powder to use to make my xdm 9 and glock 17 cycle?
3. A little off topic, but what are the negatives on using lead bullets?
Your probably not going to find, in a manual, any information about YOUR specific load and components that you mention above. Most manuals provide a given set of components and its up to you to use them...or work up your own loads substituting YOUR components. Being new to reloading it is VERY, and I do mean VERY important that you know to start with nothing more than the recommended start loads and gradually work up from there if you wish to have a load that is a heavier charge at some point. Also, something to be aware of...if it works in one gun one way, it may work in yours totally different...good or bad. You are best off, IMO, to start your own loads at the lowest starting point and work up from there. It is YOUR responsibility to load safely, and to use common sense when loading your ammo. That being said I would use some caution using "recipies" that other people are using since they are loads proven to work for THAT person in THAT persons weapon and were most likely started at the starting load and worked with to get the desired result. Not saying you should not do it, just use some common sense and pay attention to details. Check your loads against a starting load that is given and make sure that you are not exceeding pressure levels.

Looking at the manuals I use (Hornady 8th Edition, Lyman 47th & 49th Editions and Modern Reloading) I would say you should be good with around 3.8-4.0gn with the 115gn JHPs. Again, if I were you, I would start with the recommended loads and go from there. I am pretty sure you can substitute pretty much any jacketed bullet provided the weight is the same and again you are starting with starting loads...at least thats how I do most...NOT all...of mine and have had no issues. :razz: There are others on here that have been at this reloading a whole lot longer than I that will give some of the best advice you will get anywhere. My handgun loading experience is limited but have loaded many thousands of small and large (magnum) rifle rounds.

Just my thoughts...

~J~
 

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Start by using lead bullet data of the same weight and design, for plated bullets. Start with a minimum load and work down .1 grain at a time until the gun stops cycling then use the one or two loads up from the load that stops cycling the gun reliably. Load about 5 rounds of each to test.
 

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Eventually, invest in a chronograph.
 

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Kinetic bullet puller first. :)
 

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hmm, interesting question, never heard of pushing load down to bare min for saving powder. Are you sure you can save much per bullet at 7000 grains per pound? Might do better if buy in bulk or go FMJ instead of JHP?
 

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I load "bunny fart" rounds for IDPA CDP competition.
 

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Its not a good idea to load below start/min load data listed in most manuals It can cause overpressure due to case volume to power charge volume ratios. This is know to happen in rifle loadings. Also you do not want a load so light it may leave a bullet in the bore when I sstarted loading many years ago I stuck a 148 wadcutter in a lovely old S&W K38 and not knowing it I drove another behind it and ringed the barrel then went through a h-ll to get it replaced as Smith did not make that barrel any more.
 

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There is a reason to never load below the manual minimum. its called detonation. Look up Detonation in your manuals rear index of terms. You can get in as much or more trouble with light loads the same as overcharges, as stated in the above post by Lopper.
 

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I've only heard of this happening in rifle calibers, usually magnum rifle calibers.
 

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I've only heard of this happening in rifle calibers, usually magnum rifle calibers.
It will never happen in pistol loads with fast burning powders.

Even in rifles i have never seen where it was reproduced in the lab.

I think so called "detonations" are really either over charges or using the wrong powder. I read where a guy didn't have any 4831 so he used bullseye!

don
 

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I've only heard of this happening in rifle calibers, usually magnum rifle calibers.
True, it's more likely in rifle calibers, but handguns are not exempt. I had a very early experiance with .243 loads when I was younger (a long time ago). I loaded under the manual min load and the detonation made the bolt almost stuck. I had to use extra force to get it open. I tried several rounds that did the same thing. I learned my lesson on light loads right there. Went home and pulled the rest and loaded them up to mim specs with no more problems. :shock:
 

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True, it's more likely in rifle calibers, but handguns are not exempt. I had a very early experiance with .243 loads when I was younger (a long time ago). I loaded under the manual min load and the detonation made the bolt almost stuck. I had to use extra force to get it open. I tried several rounds that did the same thing. I learned my lesson on light loads right there. Went home and pulled the rest and loaded them up to mim specs with no more problems. :shock:
A .243 is not a normal handgun cartridge!

Since you were a new reloader, are you sure you were using the correct powder?

don
 

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A .243 is not a normal handgun cartridge!

Since you were a new reloader, are you sure you were using the correct powder?

don
I can still look up the charge and powder because I keep records of everything I reload for referance. And, yes I am sure it was the correct powder. I wasn't a new reloader at the time, I was just like this OP and was looking for a lighter target load. Some of us learn by our own experance and some of us learn by other peoples experiances. Which is better?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for all the info guys. For now, i'm going to combine xdm_shooter and agalindo's info. That is I am going to start in the middle of the recommended low/high. Then move down the .1 grain at a time.
 

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No offense to xdm_shooter but Rainier recommends that you use lead bullet data not jacketed bullet data for their bullets.
 

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No offense to xdm_shooter but Rainier recommends that you use lead bullet data not jacketed bullet data for their bullets.
No worries agalindo...I misread what the OP said, I thought he was loading JHP bullets...overlooked the "Rainier" :rolleyes: my bad
 

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There is a reason to never load below the manual minimum. its called detonation. Look up Detonation in your manuals rear index of terms. You can get in as much or more trouble with light loads the same as overcharges, as stated in the above post by Lopper.
Not likely w/ the small volumn 9mm.
A couple things fo rthe newb reloader. You will not find any data using plated bullets, well, maybe AA powder site, but no other. A plated bullet is NOT a jacketed bullet & should be loaded using starting jacketed data or lead bullet data. OAL is important, especially in the 9mm. Match the profile of the bullet as closely as possible to the bullets used in your data source. Failing that, load to the longest OAL your gun will run. To check that, make a dummy round, remove the bbl & drop it in. It should seat fully & fall out freely. If it's too long, seat it 0.01" deeper until it does. Then try it in the mag, you'll need to load at least 3-4 rds to test the mag.
For really light loads, Unqiue isn't the best choice, a bit slow for that. Trying to save money on your powder charge is foolish economy IMO. Choose a powder that suits your vel needs & load it properly. Unique or other medium burner will leave unburnt powder if loaded much below midrange levels IME. For a 115gr plated, I would not go below 4.5gr. The plated HP will load pretty short OAL too, the shoulder hits rifling sooner than a RN design. Sounds like you need to do some add'l. reading/study. If you do not have a reloading manual, go buy two; the Lyman #49 & the Speer #14, read them both, then again.
 
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