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Zero Vs. Berry Bullets


chrisa006

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I've heard of 2 reoccurring complaints regarding Berry's.

The jacket separates easier than other plated bullet products out there. The bullet isn't always sized correctly.

I don't really know the reasons for the plating gripe, but crimp seems to be a big factor here. If you find the correct crimp the plating doesn't auto-disintegrate. People using other plated bullets seemed amazed at the fragility of these bullets.

The sizing issue seems random. Although I believe it was dirtypool40 that ordered a huge order (25,000+ ???) and had the bullets begin to arrive sized .002 too small. Perhaps contact dirtypool40 and ask him how this was resolved. I'm not sure if the doublestruck Berry's are worth the money, I couldn't tell a difference with a 100 bullet average and a .0001 micrometer.

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You rang??? B)

It was a sizing issue and I went round and round with them. To their credit, they finally said "you're right, we're sorry we'll fix it, and we'll change our sizing to .402".

The 200's I got as replacement (all they had, although I prefer the 180's) have been great. They are NOT the more expensive double struck, they are just sized .402". Make sure to ask for that when you order.

PaulW has used them and so have others on here.

The week before the sectional I shot one of the best free hand groups I've ever shot with those same .402" plated hp's. I backed up diagonally in the bay and had about 30 yards. four went into a ragged clover leaf and the fifth, I "dumped" an inch and a half out at 7 o'clock.

The short version? Sized properly they work great. My next order is going in before the end of the year.

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Just understand you are not comparing apples to apples. The Berry is a plated bullet where as Zero is a real jacket. Basically its a lead bullet with a thin copper coating. The berry's may be a good choice for practice but the consistency wont be there so you may not want to risk using them at major matches. Not even sure its worth the price difference in the first place considering the overall cost of the sport. I have used and sold Zero for many years. I have tried others but nothing entices me to move from the Zero. I would rather have quality and a good value. Thats why you dont see me shooting Nosler, Hornady or Lapua.

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I use either Zeros or Montana Gold FMJs... for .45 ACP.

I tried two brands of plated bullet and finally gave up.

Maybe it was me... but I just couldn't get consistant crimps. Even at 172 - 175 PF the plating blew off of some.... plus they seem to be prone to set back problems.

The FMJs are a more cash but worth it to me.... since I really want to spend as little time reloading as possible.

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First, why are you considering using the plated bullets? Is it because of cost? Are you looking for a totally encapsulated bullet to reduce smoke/exposure to lead?

I have tested all kinds of bullets when I was casting my own bullets. I was a dealer for Rainier. I liked Rainiers because I liked the idea of the completely encapsolated bullet. I did not like the smoke I got from the powder burning the exposed lead at the bottom of FMJs. At the time, plated bullets were a little cheaper than FMJs. I carried ouot a lot of tests with Ranier and West Coast Bullets. First, there is a significant difference in the consistency (diameter/weight) between double-strike (sized twice) and single strike plated bullets. Accuracy was acceptable to 25 yards - fired in various guns from bags and 45s from a ransome rest (not as good in open guns). However, my Bullseye shooter friends did not like them - the accuracy was not quite right for them (45 cal). For IPSC, they were acceptable. Phil Strader used (I am not sure if he still is using them) West Coast bullets for a long time. The double-strike bullets (especially the Raniers) had a pretty significant plating. Triton used their JHPs for their defensive loads. I have used them for hunting in my .44 and they performed well against deer and pigs (aslong as the velocities were too radical). Plated bullets ran faster than FMJs so you can reduce your charge a 10th of a grn or so (all of my chrono work is done on Oehler chronos - 2 set in tandem). Plated bullets are better than lead bullets because of the lack of smoke but I don't think so for accuracy (that is if you have a good quality lead bullet). You do have to be careful about over crimping with some of the plated bullets, primarily the single strike bullets. I have put significant crimps on both Ranier and West Coast bullets and never cut the plating. My tests demonstrated that the plated bullets work well in Limited guns, etc. Accuracy was not that great in Open guns - actually unacceptable based on the tests I conducted (again a velocity issue I think).

The rising shipping costs made me question the cost effectiveness of using the plated bullets - I am on the East Coast and it seems most were made on the West Coast. Around 1999, Star Ammunition started making a CEB (Completely Enclosed Base) bullet. They were followed by Montana Gold (not sure if Zero makes one). These were the ticket for me because I could buy and sell an accuracte and consistent, completely encapsulated bullet for a little less than the plated bullets (pitty they are out of business now). Again, the cost of delivered plated bullets per thousand was almost the same as the price of FMJs from either of Star, MG, or Zero. So, if price is the factor, compare delivered costs. For me saving $7/1000 by buying plated bullets over FMJs is not enough for me to go with the plated bullets. The thing to consider is that plated bullets aren't cheap to manufacture - they are labor intensive (core casting, the plating process, the sizing). The process for FMJs is easier but they are costly because of the materials needed (jackets/core). Factor shipping into both and the price difference/1000 is not that great. So, why use plated bullets then?

As for comparison between Zero, MG, and Star - A lot of factors can effect accuracy - loads, guns, etc. I tested all three in various calibers and had them tested by Bullseye shooters. We could not determine any significant difference in accuracy between the three fired from the same guns with the same loads (there was a variance in points of impact but you adjust for that). There were slight velocity differences between the 3 with the same charges - the most signifcant being MGs (slower), Star being faster. However, the variances were minimal and I have switched bullets without changing my charge weight (slight point of impact change). Both Zero and MGs have excellent quality control and you don't have to worry about accuracy/consistency with either.

I have used Zero 180 JHPs in my limited gun and MG 180 CMJs (exact same load for both). I currently am using the MGs because I like the ogive on the bullet better - they feed in my gun better. My son uses MG CMJs in his Open gun. Currrently, I get a better buy on MGs. Since I am loading for 2 shooters right now, I have to go with the best price, too. However, I can take my Limited load and use the Zeros without any worry (only a slight change in point of impact). Haven't tried a change with my son's open gun.

So, I would go with the plated bullets ONLY if you can get a really good buy on them delivered. Otherwise, I would go with Zero or MG.

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180 gr Berrys are not for making major. Minor, OK. Major, no.

200 gr Berrys are a good choice, but not enough cheaper than Zeros to make it worth messing with for me. For the extra couple bucks, I just send a check to Angus and am done with it.

Since you're east coast, do yourself a favor and send Chuck the check and be done with it.

If you're really going to be practicing a lot, as in 20K+ in practice a year, there is probably some merit in buying 180gr Berrys and loading them down to about 875 to 900 fps. You'll save a few hundred bucks a year that way. The rule of thumb with Berrys is to keep them under 950 fps. Personally, based on my experience, I'd keep them at or under 900 fps.

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I have run Berrys at 1400 fps and had no problems except with the HP.

The HP started seperating around 1345 fps.

No problem getting major out of the 180 either with very good acuracy.

I agree Zero is top of the line but Berrys are a good budget choice.

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Just wondering, what am I missing? The places I've priced Berry's from and the prices I got from Angus for Zero bullets for my production gun, Zero's from Angus are cheaper. Where are you guys pricing the Berry's from. I've used Berry's for the last 3 years with only one issue and that is they don't like fast powders in my gun. No accuracy and lots of key holes.

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About a month ago, compared bullet prices from Precision Delta, Zero from Angus & Berrys plated from Grafs. Grafs prices were lowest & included shipping. 40-180 HP, $145.99/2M; 45-230 HP, $152.95/ 2M & 9mm-147 HP, $111.19/2M. Precision Delta was only slightly more & will be my choice for my next bullet purchase even tho I have had good results with Berrys.

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180 gr Berrys are not for making major. Minor, OK. Major, no.

200 gr Berrys are a good choice, but not enough cheaper than Zeros to make it worth messing with for me. For the extra couple bucks, I just send a check to Angus and am done with it.

Since you're east coast, do yourself a favor and send Chuck the check and be done with it.

If you're really going to be practicing a lot, as in 20K+ in practice a year, there is probably some merit in buying 180gr Berrys and loading them down to about 875 to 900 fps. You'll save a few hundred bucks a year that way. The rule of thumb with Berrys is to keep them under 950 fps. Personally, based on my experience, I'd keep them at or under 900 fps.

Eric, My prices now include shipping so it doesnt matter where you are. Alaska, Hawaii or Guam(U.S. territory) They go by priority mail flat rate box.

CHRIS, i am a supporting dealer on this forum. You can look in the dealer section or go to www.shootersconnection.com. Just dont leave the s out between shooter and connection or you will go to a competitors web page who bought the domain shooterconnection to steer my cusotmers to him. I returned the favor but still think I am on the loosing end of that deal.

About a month ago, compared bullet prices from Precision Delta, Zero from Angus & Berrys plated from Grafs. Grafs prices were lowest & included shipping. 40-180 HP, $145.99/2M; 45-230 HP, $152.95/ 2M & 9mm-147 HP, $111.19/2M. Precision Delta was only slightly more & will be my choice for my next bullet purchase even tho I have had good results with Berrys.

From Grafs web page today.

BERRY 40 (.401) 180gr HP BULLET PER 100

Item Number: BY4080H · Availability: In stock

Quantity: 100$8.99 500$42.70 1000$80.91 2000 $156.43

on the 2000 quantity of Zero from me at 165.00 its only 4.50 a 1000 cheaper. Not worth the difference in quality of you ask me. You can save even more buying 4000 at a time now.

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OK Chuck, you just got my business back.

I just did the math on the Montana Gold VS. Chuck's Zero's.

The savings is $0.026 per bullet for .45 230 gr JHP

And, the saving is $0.0105 per bullet for .40 180 gr JHP IF ordered in a lot of 4000

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ive shot the double struck 180s at 1000 FPS without fail or accuracy troubles. I really think its more of how you load them rather than the bullet(*if they are sized right) mine were at .4015 avg

titegroup, Factory glock barrels, KKM and a smith and wesson 1006 10mm...fail not.

of course, YMMV.

harmon

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