Weighing Bullets -- how much difference matters?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by awshoot, Jun 15, 2017.

  1. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    In the 1980s I found 180 grain Nosler partition bullet variables that were over fifteen grains in weight from the same lot.
    I went nuts sorting and weighing bullet weights after that for years. Ask me if I do it now.
     
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  2. DizzyJ

    DizzyJ
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    Do you do it now? :D
     
  3. Goosebrown

    Goosebrown
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    For powder, varget is pretty consistently good in 6.5. Also h4895 I think powder change and different weight will be more important than bullet weight differences.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2017
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  4. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    Lapua is great brass! When you finally settle on your best round make sure you purchase enough powder, bullets, cases and primers from the same lot number so you can duplicate it exactly in the future.

    My best example is the same load exactly to the tick, except for the brass in an old .264 Win. Westerner.
    With Winchester balloon cases the rifle shot sub MOA -3/4'' at 100 Yards all day long. I purchased new Remington brass worked up the load exactly, only to find it shot the same load at +6'' at 100 yards.
    Through research I found the difference was in the case design [ the web at the case base + volume] and I had to start all over again with the Remington brass. Never was I able to duplicate the performance of the Balloon cases with Remington brass.

    Variations in bullet weight did not matter, as much as concentricity of the overall round.
    Just sayen
    Silver Hand
     
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  5. DizzyJ

    DizzyJ
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    Remington brass definitely has more capacity than most other manufacturers. I learned that first hand by measuring volumes of several different manufacturers.
     
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  6. Goosebrown

    Goosebrown
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    Lapua brass or stop shooting and learn to play the tuba. No other brass compares.
     
  7. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    Best brass may not give you the best load for accuracy!
     
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  8. Goosebrown

    Goosebrown
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    With the right work up it will.

    Every. Time.
     
  9. Crohnos01

    Crohnos01
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    Hmmm.... In my case, I would have enough brass cases I could probably make my own tuba out of left over cases... I do occasionally whistle across the empty case mouth...:p
     
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  10. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    Yea for the brass you are loading! Did you not read my post about the .264 balloon brass issues I had? That was the extreme in my almost forty years of reloading.

    I have found brass can make a difference due to case configuration and case volume.
     
  11. awshoot

    awshoot
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    So I repeated my previous set of loads except this time all of the bullets I used were weight sorted and weighed in between 143.20 and 143.29 grains. The shortest cartridge measured 2.400" (base to ogive) and the longest was 2.405". I kept track of the exact measurement of each cart and plotted each shot -- I see no discernible correlation between the variations in length and where the bullet ended up going.

    Best series:
    6 shots: 2.7"
    5 shots: 1.4"
    4 shots: 0.8"

    (My prior result with unsorted bullets: 1.7"; 1.4"; 0.7")

    I felt like my shooting was normal -- I personally didn't feel I was having an off day -- if anything, I felt more relaxed. The weird thing is that my weight sorted bullet loads were actually worse than when I didn't sort. It was hotter today and a little bit more breezy, but it wasn't a howling gale. Another odd thing, the best group this time was not at the same powder charge as the previous one.

    Anyway -- I checked the twist rate calculator on Berger's website and the bullet I'm using is rated as "marginally stable" for my twist rate. I think I just need to move on to something else.
     
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  12. DizzyJ

    DizzyJ
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    Sometimes retesting can confuse one even more!
     
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  13. Crohnos01

    Crohnos01
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    Mathematically, eveything you can do to turn a variable into a constant is good for repeatability. Consistent bullet weights, same lot number primers and powder, etc....

    Then it all goes to hell when you get to the range :s0092:
     
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  14. awshoot

    awshoot
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    As an update, I went with a whole new setup. I've only just started working the load and so far I've only done a series where I varied BTOL but kept the powder charge weight constant (I just chose a bottom of the range charge). I used 123 gn Nosler Custom Competitions. Did not weight sort bullets.

    The winning BTOL made a 6 shot group measuring: 1.36"; minus one flier: 0.88"; minus two fliers: 0.75".

    I feel better about this and once I get through varying charge weights, I should have something decent for target shooting. I think the 143 gn bullets I was fighting with are just too heavy for my twist rate.
     
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  15. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    Concentric from the tip of the bullet back through the case, bullet stick out, close as possible for your rifle to the lands and grooves. There are times the mag well has to be altered for the reach.

    Consider this when you have flyers.
     
  16. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    It never made any definitive difference, so no I do not.
     
  17. ma96782

    ma96782
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    There are many factors that could add up. But, the main idea is that you want consistent ammo that will shoot.

    Mind you that I'm not saying that X is the number for all situations. But the USMC Match Shooters weights each bullet and sorts them to within 1/10 of a grain. How do I know that? Watch this.....



    Answer is at 33:03. Course, things could change.

    And, don't ask me why the guy that seated primers....was loading ammo using spent primers.

    Aloha, Mark
     
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  18. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    I was not only loading rifle but also pistol at the time so my results may not have been exactly what you wanted to see or hear. For me and the thousands of rounds I fired anything under an inch at 25 yards with a hand gun was outstanding and when I did achieve the task [slow fire on a police range] I had quit weighing my projectiles! Not to say I don't have several 20 round boxes of loaded rounds that every consideration had been made wile loading for long gun. In general a guy can shoot under an inch or make one hole 5/8'' or less with five rounds
    and never weigh thousands of pills to do it.
     
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  19. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf
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    Harry M. Pope never weighed his hand-cast bullets or powder charges. He sure knew how to use a micrometer and shoot though..
    San Diego Schutzenguilde
    Not saying that a manufacturer could screw up big time but I've never seen jacketed factory slugs vary by much at all.
     
  20. Silver Hand

    Silver Hand
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    Might have been something that got by Nosler at the time,1970s. But there 30 cal. 180 grain partition bullets were as much as 15 + grains out [That was what started me going nuts placing every jacketed and cast pill on a scale] I really wanted them to work in that caliber! Love the concept of the H partition and separate lead hardness. I tested for penetration, remaining bullet condition and spent weight, in sand stone, sand, wood and soil. Also shot a few steel plates of various thickness. Other than disintegration hitting the thicker plate steels, not one was recovered de-jacketed. I spent lots of time shooting them! Someplace around here I think I still have the targets with all the load data and color codes I used at the time, written in place on the paper targets and may still have a partial box and a maybe full box of bullets from that lot#.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2017
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