Berry's 185 gr. Hollow Base Round Nose

Berry's 185 gr. Hollow Base Round Nose

This is a discussion on Berry's 185 gr. Hollow Base Round Nose within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; Does anyone have experience loading this bullet (185gr HBRN) for the .45 using HP-38 powder ? I have been working loads up from 5.0 to ...

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Thread: Berry's 185 gr. Hollow Base Round Nose

  1. #1
    Member Array dougja's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
    Tacoma, WA

    Berry's 185 gr. Hollow Base Round Nose

    Does anyone have experience loading this bullet (185gr HBRN) for the .45 using HP-38 powder ? I have been working loads up from 5.0 to 5.6 grains and the low range didn't cycle the action well enough and the higher range doesn't produce the accuracy I would like.
    The Lee manual states the safe range for 185 gr. jacketed bullet at 5.0 to 5.9 grains of the HP-38. Berry's suggest working in the low to mid range of jacketed data.
    Interesting that at 5.6 grains the recoil is only moderate, suggesting to me that the hollow base of the bullet may allow higher charges.
    I would really appreciate input from someone who has experienced this bullet. I have read the manuals, called Berry's , read Berry's website and searched the web.
    Can accuracy be improved with even more of a powder charge, almost to the never exceed level? Should I look at OAL, currently 1.255" or could it be in the Lee Factory Crimp adjust (currently about a 1/2 to 3/4 turn) offering a .471 measurement at the neck.
    I know this post won't appeal to most people, but I hope someone else using hollow base plated bullets by Berry will find it helpful or they will contribute their knowledge.

    Thanks in advance for your helpful suggestions.

  2. #2
    Member Array showmebob's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
    Salida, Colorado
    Can accuracy be improved with even more of a powder charge, almost to the never exceed level? QUOTE]

    I don't have experience with your caliber and load but while working with .380 and Berrys bullets I found that for my gun the higher the charge the more accurate it was. The last .1 grain made a huge difference. The other calibers I load for with Berrys bullets seem to be more accurate with lighter loads.
    Hope this helps!

  3. #3
    New Member Array Chris356TSW's Avatar
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    Nov 2011
    Shingle Springs, CA

    185 gr Berrys HBRN/DS

    I had issues with the same bullet when I first began working with the Hollow Base. I have found that 1st you really need to weighht and sort the bullets and try to keep them within 2 to 4 tenth of a grain for a consistant accurate load. Save the odd bullets for practise. Make sure that you use the same manufacture of brass. I use either Federal or spear, Federal tends to be thicker. Measure your brass to be sure it has not became to short from battering (very common for brass that head spaces off the case .888 min.) I have found that Unique tends to be more accurate since they changed it a few years back but you should be ok with the lite loads,185gr, 700 to 800 FPS and Unique for the heavy loads. your best accuracy will be at or around 750 to 850 FPS. the firearms I have tested it in, S&W Performance center 1911, M&P45, S&W 625 rev. and Glock.
    The M&P and 1911 = Federal case, bullets weight 184.7 to 185.00=6.0 grains of Unique = 1.25" @ 25yard off a rest and 2" to 2.75". though we headspace off the case I try to seat the bullet as close to .0003 to .0005 off the rifling it will depend on each firearms chamber. To find your distance from the rifling take a semi tight case that holds the bullet firmly then start the bullet in the case and slowley push it into the chamber until the case head stops in the chamber and then gently remove it. Or you can get a gauge from brownells to measure the distance.
    I only do this on my match ammo, except the weight of each bullet and I don't mix cases. Also make sure that your the neck size is small enough to hold the bullet firmly ( bullet .452 - neck .450) and use a firm taper crimp and try not to deform the neck and bullet when doing the taper crimp.
    My M&P I use the exact bullet but 6.5 of unique.
    because of the hollow base the base swells to seal of gass leakage and will increase pressures slightly so begin at 5.6 (Hornady 4th edition 200 grain load and 6.5 max and not over pressure. The problem with Berrys is the inconsistant bullet weight, I have had them vary from 182.3 to 185.9 and that kills the accuracy. Unless your shooting a barrel with polygonal rifling you might try Laser cast, they are extremly hard and can handle up to1200 fps without heavy leading. Their 185 or 200 grain SWC are excellent and work well with any pistol powders. Always remember never reload for self defense, thats a go to jail free card. hope this helps.

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  5. #4
    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Jan 2010
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    I am loading up some at this very minute for a shoot on Sunday. I am loading for the 40 and 45. I only use Unique powder for 90% of my ammo needs. I only use 230 weight and don't have issues with the accuracy.
    " Blessed is that man, who when facing death, thinks only of his front sight"
    -Jeff Cooper

  6. #5
    Senior Moderator
    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
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    May 2007
    It would seem that the hollow base bullets would have the potential for very good accuracy.
    Charter Member of the DC .41 LC Society "Get heeled! No really"

    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

    Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893

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