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I have just bought a P-11 9mm, I was shooting Hydra-Shok 147gr HP, I decided to take a metal file and file down the side of the casing to remove the bullet without damage by prying around on it. After I got the side filied down enough to remove the bullet I could see that the bullet was packed down tight on the powder. It seems to me that this would simulate a case where a smiley pushed the bullet back. If it is safe for a bullet to be pressed down tight on the powder on the 9mm, what is the difference on the 380?
 

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the difference is that it was intended to be pushed back in the 9mm case. That is the way it was loaded, and the way the pressure was tested (we would assume from factory ammo).

if you were to start with a round that had extra room in there (say substitute a faster burning powder so you have less powder in that same case) and do the same pressure testing, and come up with a loading that matches the original in pressure. Then push the bullet back some more, the pressure will rise. That is the dangerous part. It is not really the position of the bullet (assuming that the factory round is within pressure limits), just the change in position from where it was loaded (and presumably within pressure limits).

oh, and I personaly don't like 147's in the P-11 you don't gain a lot with the heavier round out of such a short barrel (it does not have time to gain speed), and it will add more felt recoil. I like the ones around 127.... (just my .02)
 

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A bullet that is seated so that it is in contact with the powder is called a compressed load... as opposed to one that may have air space and the powder is loose and can be heard when shaking the bullet. There is nothing wrong with compressed loads as long as the resulting pressure is within spec. If you compress the load more, you increase the pressure... the same thing happens with uncompressed loads... either way, you have an increase in pressure which can, in some cases, be dangerous.

I use a compressed load with a stick powder for my match .223 ammo... and you can hear the powder crunching during the seating of the bullets. It's perfectly normal.
 
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