Gun Specific Bullet Weight

This is a discussion on Gun Specific Bullet Weight within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; I was listening to Guntalk the other day and I learned that certains (perhaps all) guns are designed around an specific bullet weight... or maybe ...

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Thread: Gun Specific Bullet Weight

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    Gun Specific Bullet Weight

    I was listening to Guntalk the other day and I learned that certains (perhaps all) guns are designed around an specific bullet weight... or maybe the other way around. It was mentioned that 230 grains is the "sweet" weight for the 1911 and I was wondering if there is a list or resource that covers this topic.
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    Not sure of a list Miggy - tho maybe one exists somewhere but IMO yep - there were certain de facto bullet choices early on ... your 230 for the .45 acp is one and 158 was another for 38 spl, in snubs in particular IIRC.

    I think too way back 125 was the ''usual'' for 9mm. .44 mag I think was 240. Trying to remember .45LC, that too was I think 230.

    These days it seems we have strayed quite a bit from the early choices.
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    I was listening to Guntalk the other day and I learned that certains (perhaps all) guns are designed around an specific bullet weight... or maybe the other way around.
    It is true to an extent that the weight of the bullet determines the rifling twist that is the most optimum.

    For instance, the original Colt M-16 used a bullet weight of 55 grains and a 1-10 twist.
    Later, it was determined that the 62 grain bullet had more penetration, but the 1-10 did not display the best accuracy, so the twist was dropped back to 1-8 and heavier bullets above 70 grains require even less, such as a 1-7.

    With pistol bullets the difference is not as critical, but it can still be noticeable. The standard .45 loves bullets that are 230 grains. Some will shoot the 180's just fine, others will see decreased accuracy.

    When you design a gun, you have to start somewhere. You figure out the weight of the bullet,about how fast you want it to go, and what twist is needed to stabilize it. Of course there is some overlap, but some cartridges are just more finicky than others.


    Some of the reloading manuals get into this somewhat.
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    Certain cartridges were designed with a certain bullet weight in mind. The 40S&W was a 180gr, the 10mm was a 200gr, the 45 Auto was a 200gr but settled on the 230gr, the 44 Mag was 240gr, the 45 Colt was 250gr, the 45/70 was 405gr, 30-06 was a 150gr as a military round. That's all I can remember.
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