View Full Version : 200 Grain SWC or Round nose for accuracy?

24th November 2007, 14:30
Will a 200 grain SWC or a round nose be more accurate?

24th November 2007, 14:32
That will be a question best asked to your pistol. For me I prefer a LSWC for range/match use.
I would suggest picking up a few boxes of each and see how it shakes out at the range.

24th November 2007, 15:01
My smith advised me to looking for a bullet design that had a good deal of bearing surface -- i.e., lots of "outside" that can contact the rifling and impart a good, stable spin.

At the ranges and velocities at which competition .45 ACP 1911s are typically used, bullet shape probably has less effect on accuracy than you would imagine. The round-nose design is one that feeds optimally in most semiautomatic pistols. The LSWC design punches a more circular hole in paper than a round-nose bullet and is easier to score, yet still feeds better than the classic flat-nosed wadcutter.

But as Hunter said, all pistols have their own appetite, and this is true not only between different models of pistol, but between different examples of the same model. Try a few boxes of whatever you're considering, and use the one that feeds and groups the best.


Joni Lynn
24th November 2007, 15:07
It seems that the 200 swc style is more accurate in my guns.

24th November 2007, 23:20
Like several others have said, every gun is different. With that said, look at what the bullseye guys shoot... LSWC. Yes they are easier to score on paper, but do you think the bullseye guys would shoot bullets that did not have good inherent accuracy? And besides, most will never shoot well enough to really tell a difference.

25th November 2007, 08:36
LSWCs are more accurate.
But a finely tuned load behind a round nose can be more accurate than an untuned load with an LSWC. That is, each load (in each gun) will have a "most accurate" combination. You have to try different loads with any bullet, in each gun, to determine which is *the* most accurate.
Start with a combination that others have found accurate and see how it shoots in your gun. Then, see how others have varied that combination and try the same variations to see what is best in your gun. (Note "gun", not "guns".)
This can be time-consuming so start with something others have found to work and, if you want better, then start experimenting (carefully!).
In 45 ACP, I shoot a combination that many Bullseye shooters use -- it is "good enough" for my abilities: H&G #68 200 grain LSWCs, mixed brass, Winchester Large Pistol primers, 3.8 grains of Hodgdon's Clays, OAL of 1.242 +/- 0.002", and 0.469 +/- 0.002" taper crimp.

25th November 2007, 13:23
Thanks to everyone for the information. I purchased my Colt Combat Commader years ago, but until recently have not had time to really get into the hobby of shooting. Thanks again and I look forward to the day that I will be the one who can contribute when questions are asked.

Joni Lynn
25th November 2007, 14:43
I also like the nice neat holes that the 200 swc makes in paper.

25th November 2007, 15:55
I like the SWC's...for accuracey and nice holes in IDPA targets!! But you may have to let your gun decide.....some will not run SWC's with out work.

26th November 2007, 21:39
A lot of folks here and elsewhere recommend LSWC bullets. What about plated SWC? And Federal makes a 185 grain Jacketed SWC in loaded ammo. They call it "Target".

Do you need to shoot lead, or will plated swc be just fine?

26th November 2007, 21:52
The Federal 185gr SWC is an excellent target round.

26th November 2007, 22:10
Yes. Excellent indeed. Feeds well and is accurate in my series 70.

I'm wondering, when folks say lead SWC, are they taking about swaged lead, or cast? I rarely read about plated SWC bullets, and yet they probably feed better in 1911s, do they not? And they are readily available.

26th November 2007, 22:33
Jacketed are fine and many Bullseye shooters use Nosler 185 JHPs, specifically for their accuracy.

Plated not so good - probably adequate at 25 yards but not at 50 yards. I presume the electroplating process doesn't lay down a sufficiently even weight distribution when it's applied. They get a lot of use in IPSC/USPSA though where the "A" zone is so much bigger and 50 yards is a rarity.

Plated don't feed any better than lead or jacketed in a properly setup gun, and can be worse ... specifically, in a gun with marginal feeding reliability, the soft plating on Rainiers can tie it up. Some also have an unusual ogive - the Rainier 230 RN is significantly 'pointier' than traditional ball. Berry's and Montana Gold are thicker plating and a standard ogive.

As to swaged vs cast, I believe the general theory was that casting could leave voids that would cause uneven rotation and loss of accuracy. Star swaged were the gold standard in Bullseye until they ceased production almost 2 years ago. Zero, Magnus and Precision Delta offer swaged, almost everyone else is cast, LaserCast, Penn, Keads, Mastercast, etc. Mostly comes down to what your gun prefers.


29th November 2007, 09:15
A lot of folks here and elsewhere recommend LSWC bullets. What about plated SWC? And Federal makes a 185 grain Jacketed SWC in loaded ammo. They call it "Target".

Do you need to shoot lead, or will plated swc be just fine?

I've used Rainer Plated as well as Berry's plated 200gr SWC and had good results with both... but the Oregon Trails 200gr LSWC provided me with better accuracy at greater distances. I'm sure if I had spent more time tweaking the plated SWC loads (different powder charges and/or brands), I could've gotten better results, but I found the Lasercast OT bullets on sale (and even when not on sale), they were cheaper to than the plated brands.

Manufacturers who label their bullets as "target" or "match", expect you to pay more for them for their potential "better" accuracy. I once picked up some 200gr Remington Match FMJ Truncated cone bullets (1000) while on sale... and didn't see that much difference between those and the OT Lasercast, which cost less. For informal target shooting, the speeds involved won't "lead" my barrel to justify the cost of a copper plated or jacketed bullet. As a matter of fact... with the cost of materials these days, I'm going to venture into casting my own bullets very soon.

29th November 2007, 18:04
Plated will be fine but they usually cost more than lead so for economy, lead's the way to go.

25th December 2007, 21:10
Okay so I thought I would follow up on my reloading for my 45ACP. I have started with 200 grain SWC from both Berry's and Rainier. I have not been to the range with either bullet yet so all I can conclude so far is strict reloading. I like the Berry's bullets better than the Rainier bullets for reloading. I have reloaded around 200 of each bullet and will take them to the range later on this week. It seems the plating on the Rainier bullets is quite a bit thinner than on Berry's. My Colt Combat Commander will only feed SWC consistently when the OAL is 1.215" or less. The Rainier bullets are longer in length (.635")than the Berry's bullets (.595"). This might not seem like much, but when I am looking for a 1.215" OAL this is a huge deal. When I do a slight taper crimp it is hard not to cut through the Rainier plating, but the Berry's plating held up great. I will see what the range has to say when I go there later in the week.

25th December 2007, 22:15
I agree on the Berry's vs Rainier plated bullet. Since MidwayUSA was my first and favorite mailorder/internet supplier when I started using plated bullets and they only had Rainiers, no choice. After discovering other sources for components, I like Berry's better, at least until they price themselves out of "my" market.
What's your powder choices?
Please keep us updated with your results.