^^This.^^ Properly fit, lubed cast bullets can be fired up to around 1400 FPS without leading without gas checks. With gas checks, they can be launched at velocities around 2500 FPS. The proper alloy, lube, and rifling twist rate become increasingly important as velocities increase.It can be. I've seen pistol barrels so leaded up you couldn't see the rifling.
On the other hand, I've seen barrels that have had over 1000 rounds run through them that take two patches to clean.
Bullet fit is #1, good lube is #2, and bullet hardness is a distant #3.
Thunderbolts in my S&W 22 Victory & my Ruger SR22 choke up the barrel pretty good. They work great in my Single Six however.