.380 acp reloading -=- anyone doing it - MP-Pistol Forum

.380 acp reloading -=- anyone doing it

This is a discussion on .380 acp reloading -=- anyone doing it within the MP Reloading forums, part of the Smith & Wesson MP Forum category; Well, after swearing that I was going to keep things simple and have only a single caliber (9mm) I bought an M&P Bodyguard .380. I ...


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Old April 5th, 2015, 02:19 PM   #1
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.380 acp reloading -=- anyone doing it

Well, after swearing that I was going to keep things simple and have only a single caliber (9mm) I bought an M&P Bodyguard .380. I just like the little thing.

The local shop had some PMC ammo available at $24.99 a box. Yikes. So I looked a bit and finally found some Fiocchi brass for 19.99 so I bought a couple of boxes and some Hydra-Shoks to see how it did with HPs.

I'm not going to pay those kind of prices very much, but I'd like to break this little guy in so I decided to add 380 to my reloading routine. I have a single stage press and 9mm die sets and I've loaded about 10K 9mm rounds without any issues.

So I ordered a set of .380 dies and some brand new brass along with some Hornady 90 grain XTPs. I'm starting with exactly what the books say for Titegroup and I'm using .955 as a COAL (right from the Hornady book).

But no one says much about crimp on a .380. Should it be tight, or just barely crimped?

Any and all advice on anything else or any of your thoughts on loading .380 will be greatly appreciated.
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Old April 5th, 2015, 05:06 PM   #2
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Make the taper crimp like you would for a 9 mm, remove all of the case mouth flair but don't crush the jacket or distort a lead bullet.

Also, some .380 brass is pretty thin and a regular sizing die may not reduce it enough to hold the bullet properly even with a good crimp. Sort any range pick up brass to be sure it's strong enough.

Otherwise it's as straight forward as any other cartridge. Just don't try to hot rod it to make it a full power 9 mm and both your brass and your gun will thank you.
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Old April 8th, 2015, 01:35 AM   #3
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Well, they work. 100 rounds, 100 bangs. Kinda uneventful. Was concerned because I use CCI primers and the BG is known for light strikes. They all lit.
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Old April 8th, 2015, 09:26 AM   #4
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I have done a small amount of 380 reloading for my little Ruger LCP, it didn't particularly like my 380 reloads using plated bullets, the problems might be the very soft bullets, when they would hang up I noticed some substantial dents in the bullets, I'm not positive but I believe the bullets were Rainier.

I haven't done a lot of trouble shooting on my reloads, its a little pocket pistol not a plinker, and it shoots factory ammo, including my self defense rounds with no problems at all.
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Old April 8th, 2015, 12:26 PM   #5
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.380 uses the same shell plate as .223/5.56, if that helps.
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Old April 8th, 2015, 05:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G56 View Post
...

I haven't done a lot of trouble shooting on my reloads, its a little pocket pistol not a plinker, and it shoots factory ammo, including my self defense rounds with no problems at all.
I agree fully. My only real purpose is to break the gun in and to teach myself to shoot it. I just didn't want to spend $24 a box for the ammo to do that with. I also had no idea if I should be thinking HPs or just RN ball ammo. Around here, 380 ammo is hard to find and you can forget looking for anything specific. You take what they have. The only HPs were SD rounds at $22 for 20 rounds. So I bought Hornady 90 grn XTPs and some Berry's RN. I'm concluding that there is little difference between the two at the typical 7-15 yard range. The rounds cost me just over 16 cents each. That's a big savings to me. I bought used dies and a #10 shell holder (thanks for the heads up on the shell plate, KR - but I'm still using the old Rock Chucker single stage). I'll likely make no more than 500 to 1000 rounds before I give it up. I may not keep the .380, but I'm still learning, and so far the little BG has been a hoot to play with. Not a bad little gun at all.
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