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.224 bullets actually measures .225 - safe to use?


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A bought a pack of cheap LOS 55 grain .224 FMJ bullets to reload for my AR15 in 223 remington. Their intended use is for cheap plinking/hoser rounds, unless they will surprise me and group well even at distance. I've seen decent groups posted on the internet using these bullets. 

 

However, I measured  them and was quite surprised when these bullets measures .225" in diameter. All my other bullets measures .224". I guess I should say they measures .2252" at their widest point, it seems they are not entirely round and most of the bullet diameter measures .2245". 

 

I've loaded up a ladder with them, that I'm now afraid to shoot. Would you consider it safe to load this bullet? 

 

 

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Are you measuring across the cannelure?  Some companies apply the cannelure 'not in the press' and it's a post process step.  So when the cannelure is applied it leaves the metal on the edges raised.  The wash is typically not able to 'knock that back down'.  You commented they seem out of round too.  This also tells me the cannelure was added 'outside of the press'.

 

When done in the press the bullet will go thru a size die so it makes the raised bulge go away and the bullets are round.

 

Measure the bearing surface below the cannelure with a mic if you can.  Calipers are not the normal tool for measuring bullet diameter.

 

SAAMI max bullet diameter is 0.2245" +0/-0.0030  So if they are truly 0.2252" they could create a high pressure situation.

 

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These bullets are listed as FMJ, so they should be jacketed and not plated. No cannelure on them, they are smooth.

 

I did use calipers but they were good quality and these LOS bullets are clearly of wider diameter than my other brand .224 bullets. The major part of the diameter of the LOS bullet is .2245" like I said, it is just at one point when I turn the bullet in the calipers that I can measure .2252". I know, I should get a micrometer...

 

 

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I got a reply from LOS:

"our FMJ bullets 223 caliber are softer and due to this they could be a bit larger diameter without causing any problems.
Bullets are used in major ammunition companies all over the globe."
 
All good then, I guess.
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  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

Just wanted to follow up that I finally got time to test an initial crude charge weight ladder (0.4 gr powder steps) with these bullets and they worked just fine. Judging from this promising first test they provide more than acceptable accuracy for practice within 100 yards, and excellent price/performance ratio.

 

Best 5-shot group was ~1.4 MOA. If I can improve this with fine tuning the powder and perhaps seating depth I'll be real happy, but just repeatable ~1.5 MOA would be great considering these are really cheap bullets.

Edited by mrd
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