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SWC shoulder

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On the SASS Classifieds, there is a post on Hollow Base Bullets.  Out of curiosity, I clicked on it and "Bear Creek  Supply" was cited as a source.

Upon further review, on .45 ACP bullets, B. C. S.  stated and I quote "one of our bestsellers, a 200 gr RN without a (STUPID) SWC shoulder, unquote.  Really? I thought the SWC shoulder was vital for .45 ACP dependability?

As I am about to order a supply of bullets I hesitate until more experienced pards chime in concerning the SWC shoulder.



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Howdy Blaze:


Since "SWC shoulder" is ambiguous, it's hard to know what they're talking about without seeing a picture.  (it might mean a true semi-wadcutter design with pronounced shoulder, or it 'could' mean the small shelf that exists on most .45 acp bullets where the shank meets the ogive). 


FYI, Here is a bullet and company I am extremely happy with.  If you order 1000, they pay the freight.  If that's more than you want to buy, I'd be happy to split 1000 with you -- as long as they're 230 grain.




You'll note this bullet has the "shelf" I refer to above.



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First off, military style FMJ .45 auto bullets shoot perfectly fine with NO shoulder to break up a smooth transition from bullet shank to nose ogive.

So, THAT should prove a "SWC shoulder" is not necessary for reliable feeding.

The .45 auto cartridge headspaces on the case mouth, not on the bullet.  If the bullet interferes with the case mouth being able to move fully forward in the chamber, the round may not be fired by the pistol.


Bullseye shooters like a SWC or even wadcutter (if it will even run in their 1911) design because the shoulder cuts a clean hole in the target at maximum shank diameter, ensuring they never lose a point due to failure to break a ring when a round nose bullet bends the paper without cutting it.  We, of course, don't have to break rings to get a hit.


A little bit of a visible "break" between shank and nose does give the reloader a landmark when adjusting seating dies.  But accurate seating is a little more precise (and easier to measure with a caliper) if you will find the OAL that your gun needs with the design of bullet you want to shoot, and set your die to that OAL.


As for "stupid" (or intelligent), I've not found bullets to be able to be categorized as to their IQ.  ;)


If you pay attention to seating the bullet correctly, and test assembled rounds in your barrel to verify that none run into the very short leade at the front of the chamber (or even hit the rifling) so that you will get 100% chambering when you shoot, you can shoot a bullet with OR without a visible break at the shoulder.  I've shot traditional semiwadcutter bullets (with a strong shoulder), and round nose bullets (both smooth and landed shoulder), and truncated cone bullets (which have an angled shoulder all the way to the flat nose).  Load so the upper end of the shank of bullet ends at or no more than 0.010" past the case mouth, and you won't get failures to chamber because of the bullet design.


If you get sloppy, and especially if you shave off "fingernails" of the shank of the bullet due to insufficient belling or starting a slug cocked in the case mouth, you can have failures with any of the common designs of slugs.


That 200 grain Bear Creek smooth round nose bullet ought to work fine for you, BK.  But then, I would not be scared of recommending a visible-land-break round nose bullet either.    (But for the record, I mainly shoot a Truncated Cone design today.)   


Good luck, GJ





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