General Bullet Information about the bullets we sell.
Here is a discussion of various handgun bullet shapes and abbreviations that may help you in your endeavors.
This document is talking about lead cast bullets exclusively.
All dimensions are in inches and weights in grains (7000 grains to 1 pound)
Bullet Diameters / Bullet Sizes:
The bullet diameters are determined by the sizing die that the bullets are processed through.We can cast a 38/357 bullet and it falls from the mold at about 0.359 or 0.360 diameter.We can size that bullet as:
0.358 38 Special and 357 Magnum
0.357 38 Special and 357 Magnum
0.355 380 auto.
Three (3) different bullets' can be made from one mold. The 357 sizing is used in some 38/357 guns and gives better accuracy.
Coated bullets are sized AFTER the coating is applied. While lubed bullets are sized and lubed at the same time.
38-40 bullets / 40 S&W / 10MM
These bullets are exactly the same. They are produced by the same mold. All have a size of 0.401.
44 Special / 44 Magnum / 44-40 bullets
These bullets have all the same shape while the cartridges are vastly different. 44 Special and 44 Magnum are typically sized at 0.430. But the 44-40 bullets can be sized at 0.429 or 0.428.
38 Short Colt / 38 Long Colt / 38 Special / 357 Magnum / 357 Maxim
These all use the same bullets. The cartridges are listed from weakest to strongest (left to right). The cases are longer from left to right, so you can not put a more powerful cartridge in a less powerful pistol.
Realize the 357 Magnum and 357 Maxim are very high-powered cartridges that should probably shoot jacketed bullets.
45 ACP \ 45 Colt \ 45 Long Colt
It started with the 45 Colt, a cartridge adopted by the military in about 1872-1873. Used in revolvers, and proper sizing was 0.454.
In 1904 John Browning designed the 45 ACP cartridge. This cartridge was adopted by the military for the M1911 pistol. That bullet was sized 0.452.
There is no such thing as a 45 Long Colt!! Many people use the 45 Long Colt to refer to the 45 Colt.
Because the military was producing 45ACP rounds and that bullet was sized 0.452 most manufactures changed the chamber for the 45 Colt to 0.452 to be compatible with the 45 ACP components.
We make bullets sized 0.454 and 0.452. We use the Long Colt name to identify the 0.454 bullets. We are trying to point out the difference. Some older (original) firearms want that 0.454 sizing.
Here are some of the more popular abbreviations used to describe our bullet shapes.
RN- Round Nose.A bullet with a Round Nose.
RNPF-Round Nose Flat Point. A bullet with a round nose that appears to be cut off flat.
TCFP-Truncated Cone Flat Point. A bullet with a cone-shaped nose that appears to be cut off flat.
FB-Flat Base. A bullet with a flat base. Older style mold. Easier to make in the 1970s
BB-Bevel Base. A bullet with a relief around its base, making it easier to reload.
Lube Groove.A recess in the wall (side) of the bullet to hold the bullet lube.
No Lube Grove-NLG. A bullet with a straight side and no recess to hold the lube material.Must be wrapped in cloth or epoxy coated.