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Why Factory Ammo is inaccurate:

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Dyjital, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Yeah yeah yeah.. I know it's true.

    With my "Premium" ammunition failing to sell:

    IMAGE_1.jpe

    I decided that I would pull all bullets apart and basically have some expensive brass...

    I couldn't let that experience drag me down so I had to look at the positive side of reloading.

    Why is factory ammunition inconsistent?

    I had 60 rounds to tear apart:

    IMAGE_2.jpe


    All the same lot:

    IMAGE_3.jpe


    I weighed each powder load and the results could be surprising to some.... :
    each box has it's own column.
    Weighed out on a RCBS 750 elektronik skale

    IMAGE_4.jpe

    The variance actually surprised me a little.
    High: 40.0gr
    Low: 39.4gr
    Average 39.8gr

    While the powder was all across the board, the bullets on the other hand were rather consistent. Coming in at 99.8-100gr


    Too much time on my hands


    I've noticed that a .3 grain load in my rifles make a difference of hole for hole and half dollar size groups. I now understand, completely.
     
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  2. IheartGUNS

    IheartGUNS WaCo Well-Known Member

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    [video=youtube;Y5AK7fh-Oq0]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y5AK7fh-Oq0[/video]
     
  3. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    Now consider that the best match/benchrest shooters don't weigh charges AT ALL.
    They charge strictly by volume.

    And actually, if you toss out the highest one, and the lowest one, the rest are pretty much within 1% variation.
    Better than I expected actually, but then again, it is their "premium" ammo.
     
    Dyjital, rrojohnso, BDA.45 and 3 others like this.
  4. Velzey

    Velzey Estacada, Oregon Gunsmith Gunsmith Bronze Vendor Bronze Supporter

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    And this is why I handload! But for factory ammo .5 is pretty good. You should find some surplus 7.62 and compare.
     
  5. Misternt

    Misternt Salem Area Active Member

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    Did you measure COAL as well?
     
  6. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    I didn't measure the lengths. Eyeball gauge said they were all really close.
     
  7. nglayton

    nglayton Brooks Happiness is a warm barrel!

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    So I'm thinking why didn't you just take it out and shoot it instead of pulling it all apart?
     
  8. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Didn't want to spend an hour in transit to and from range just to put 60 pointless rounds down the barrel. Make every shot count.

    Plus this way I have an extra 60 bullets, 60 primers just waiting for powder. :). I already load the 100gr Sierra so that's the idea.


    Cost vs benefit.
     
  9. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    I think you're making a mountain out of a mole hill... I know we have all these high tech tools at our disposal to determine that there's a total variation of 4/70000's of a pound in 60 rounds of ammo. I would actually consider that to be pretty good, well within tolerance.

    Chances are if there's anything that's having a detrimental effect on your accuracy it's that the powder selection was probably made more with cost in mind than performance. Nearly all commercial manufacturers have a "run sheet" that details exactly what it is, and exactly what goes into it, and exactly how it's supposed to perform. Sometimes these are backwards standards decided by accountants (the accountant wants the round to cost X and the writes a standard that accepts fliers and other accuracy issues). It's also possible that your gun just doesn't like their load. It happens, that's why there's tons of ammunition manufacturers out there.
     
  10. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Well played AMP. You are right (seriously). It was an exaggeration to prove the variance (which we all know) in factory ammo. Granted a 1% variance isn't much. My rifle tended to think so.

    It was more of a kudos as "why to reload" for consistency. You cut my smoke and mirrors down to a hallway with caltrops.
     
  11. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    That's funny. A world record holder at my Club uses an RCBS Chargemaster combo to load at the range. Has a battery pack he built so he can operate independent of "grid power".

    Yes, SOME BR shooters still rely on their Harrell's powder dispensers and record their weights in "clicks" but you can bet your heinie that they weighed those charges at one time and then selected this powder thrower because it delivered consistent powder drops.

    Those that use nasty "rat turd" like powders are going more and more to weighed charges because even the Harrel's can't meter them consistently.

    BTW:

    For those of you up in WA that know Ted Larson, he just shot a match with his 30BR. Weighing every charge that he dropped from his Harrells powder dispenser his score was 400-16x. That's every one of those 40 rounds going through the 10 ring at 300 yards and 16 of them were "dead center".

    What was that about the best BR Shooters never weighing their charges?
     
  12. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    Set the scale a grain or two shy, then use a 'dribbler' to top it off. I do it every time. My new (used) Handi-Rifle in .233 is shooting one hole at 50 yards loading this way. Not bad for a rifle that does not seem to be regarded as a 'tackdriver' from most reports.
     
  13. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    The shooter who posted the 400-16x uses a "T & F" trickler. That's "Thumb and Forefinger". Keeps a "lid" filled with powder next to the scale and takes a pinch after dropping the charge from the "Thrower". Adds granule by granule until his digital ( horrors upon horrors) scale reads the exact weight he wants.

    Watching this accomplished shooter sure makes a lot of what people claim as fact here on the internet look questionable :)
     
  14. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    This is a fight I've fought more than once. Seeing as how I was the guy trying to justify the more expensive powder so the standard deviation of the load would drop from 45FPS down to 8FPS.

    When it comes to getting the "good ammo" it's not a matter of blaming the equipment, it's not a matter of blaming the cooks, it's a matter of blaming the accountants who gave the cooks something not worth cooking with.
     
  15. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    When tuning for accuracy, a 1% variation can be everything. Maybe not in a super small case like a 9mm but in a 30-06 it's a half a grain. some rifles with light barrels have narrow accuracy nodes and that half grain up or down can put you on both sides of where it wants to shoot.

    Also, the farther out you shoot, the bigger the effect.
     
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  16. theflyguy

    theflyguy Beaverton, Oregon Member

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    I was surprised how much my accuracy was/wasn't when I compared my reload to factory new ammo. A friend of mine, took me out to Tri-County Gun Club to do some rifle shooting.

    I just began reloading, so what I took out was my first time shooting rifle reloads.

    I’m shooting a Savage Model 11 .308 with a 3x9 BDC scope (don’t remember the brand name).

    For my first time I was happy with the results, since I haven’t shot rifle in nearly 25 years. My reloads were getting within 1.5”-2.5” at 100 yrds. But when I went to shot the factory stuff, I wasn’t even on the target. It was two different bullet weights 168gn vs. 150gn, but still at 100 yrds I expected to at least put the factory ammo on target.

    What a surprise for me….
     
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  17. Tomas204

    Tomas204 Oregon City Member

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    Different bullets go different places, same gun same brass, I can get flyers or tack drivers you will find out that even some gun's like different brass, with the exact same load :huh: