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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I obviously have a lot to learn, as anyone who has been following my threads for the past few days knows. Thank you to everyone who has given advice to me to help me not blow myself up. Here is the latest question I have:

Where can I find load data on my own without asking everyone here all the time?

I have the Lyman 49th manual but that doesn't have loads for everything I need. I'm looking for data for this bullet...

http://www.dardascastbullets.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=dardas&Category_Code=380

...but there's no data for it on the Hodgdon website (I'm using Titegroup powder.) Where the heck can I find all this stuff on my own?
 

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Generally you can use data for a jacketed bullet of the same weight/style and reduce the load data by 10% when loading up a lead bullet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Generally you can use data for a jacketed bullet of the same weight/style and reduce the load data by 10% when loading up a lead bullet.
What about in the case of a bullet that's 2 grains lighter than the one in the load data? As in the case of the bullet I linked and the data on the Hodgdon site. The bullet I linked in 98 grains cast lead but the data is for 100 grain FMJ bullets.
 

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There is no ones stop shopping for data for all the components available. It's why I urge newbs to use exact or near exact components to the printed data sources they have for at least 1000rds. Beyond that, you are going to have to learn to extrapolate data from what you have to work with your components.
Your lead bullet data is a good point. There are probably a dozen diff 90-100gr 380 lead bullets available to the reloader. You will find data in the Lyman for one. So you have 90gr data for a 100gr bullet. Lyman also shows data for a 120gr bullet. It is almost always safe to use heavier bullet data for lighter bullets. So I would use the 120gr max data as my starting point & work up to the 90gr data, slowly. SLowly is no more than 10reds in no more than 0.1gr powder increments.
I admonished you earlier about slowing down & I will repeat this again. As a newb, you need to apporach this like it IS rocket science, even though it is not. You really have no business using components that you do not have EXACT data for at this point in your budding hobby. I don't even recommend lead bullets for newbs because you will come across special issues that apply to loading lead bulelts & will not know how to deal with them. Jacketed bullets are so much easier, lots of data, few problems getting good results. Just ask Steve, C4W, about lead bullets & potential issues. IMO, buy 1000 jacketed, not plated, but jacketed bullets that match as closely as possible the ones in your data. If you only have one data source, you need more. More sources are more options & gives you the ability to cross reference. Last resort IMO, is coming to a forum & asking for reloading advice on formulas. What I may use I won't feel comfy telling a newb to use. Besides, every gun is diff & what works in mine may not in yours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
you can use loads listed for a heavier bullet weight for a given powder. Using that load with the lighter bullet just reduces the pressure. See LeePrecision website FAQ: http://www.leeprecision.com/cgi/faq/index.cgi

...click on loading data, and bullet weight not found.
Wonderful, thank you!

Next question: if I can't find data for a specific bullet, for example I am using a random cast bullet I found online (with cast bullet data from a reputable source), how do I figure out the correct OAL?
 

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Wonderful, thank you!

Next question: if I can't find data for a specific bullet, for example I am using a random cast bullet I found online (with cast bullet data from a reputable source), how do I figure out the correct OAL?
OAL is very bullet/gun specific. So when working w/ an unknown, make a dummy round, no powder, make sure it fits you mag & your chamber. Pull the bbl out of the gun & use it as a gage. The round should drop in & out freely. That is your max OAL. Then make up 10 test rounds w/ a powder charge just above starting but no higher than midrange & fire them. If all is good, that is your functioning OAL for that bullet in that one gun. Again, all guns are not the same.
 

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Lyman has some good load data for lead bullets in .380. Your going to have to extrapolate it out from either the heavier bullet (preferred) or the lighter bullet (be sure to reduce the load). I know you already bought some Hornady Ammo. You might want to get some cheaper factory ammo to try out as well. I started my .380 journey with some standard Speer ammo. I got used to shooting the gun with that ammo. Got a feel for how it recoils and what the brass does. I then figured out a resonable starting load using the Lyman 49 you have. I shot 10 of those and could easily tell it was not nearly as strong as the factory (cheap) stuff. So I knew I had something at least close to a starting load. I worked it up .1 gr at a time (this is a .380 we are talking about). When I got a load that functioned well but did not feel harsh I stopped and use that as my practice load. It's not as punchy as the factory stuff, but I know its safe and I enjoy practicing with the gun more. The cheaper factory ammo will help you get a feel for what the gun is supposed to feel like. My LCP is a pretty easy shooting gun IMHO. I have shot a lot of .380's that are way worse. I guess it fits my hand. The P238 is a nice gun as well. Real sights, nice trigger. You will like it.
 
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