Accurate powder scale

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Carman, Jan 14, 2012.

  1. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone know if there is a powder scale available that will measure more accurately than 1/10th of a grain?
     
  2. Mutt

    Mutt Member

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    Yes there are.

    1: You will pay for it.

    2: You will use a razor blade on individual granules or start sorting those granules based on mass to achieve the weight resolutions you're after.

    3rd: You'll never see the benefit/difference on target, game, or assignment or be able to shoot that difference.

    4th, and probably most important: The money would be better spent on quality marksmanship training, and quality equipment. And the attention spent would be better focused on an OCD style "method" to ones brass prep, reloading process, and record keeping.

    All JMHO, of course.

    Good luck

    ~Mutt
     

  3. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Mutt. I already shoot sub moa with every rifle that I own, but for grins, I seek perfection.
     
  4. Mutt

    Mutt Member

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    Cool!
    Post your best targets to date. I love target posts and reading the details on how the shooter produced those tight one-hole and sub-minute groups. Makes me jealous and drives me to be better. I dig those long shot hunting success stories too. Awesome! Vids are also a bonus. I can learn from that.
    Nothing sells me on new equipment more than tangible results from people on the internet. Heck that's how I found my most accurate load. I asked what others were using on the internet, then I picked one, loaded it up, shot it, and boom, accuracy! Now when I show up the animals just all come out of the bushes with their hooves up in the air, then lay down and die and the targets just punch themselves where I'm looking. True story! [/sarcasm] ;)

    Seriously. I'd love to see. Don't be shy.
    Training never stops, "sub MOA" or not. There's always something to be taught and learn and a .01 res scale and some cash aint gonna learn nobody nothin'.
    Do you compete locally? You should.

    Also, if you find someone that'll straighten me out on the benefits of using a .01 gn, .001 gn resolution scale as opposed to a .1 gn. I'm all ears....learning and being schooled.

    Take care.
     
  5. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Hahaha. No, I don't compete. I just love to shoot. That's why I took up reloading. I reload for my AR15, 9MM pistol, my M1 Garand, and just recently for my 300 Win Mag. Never had any issues with reloading until recently. I sold my Ruger 300 Win Mag and bought a Savage LRH in the same caliber. I shot one of the loads I had been shooting from the Ruger and it stuck the bolt in the Savage. I know you read all about it because you commented about it. Turns out that I needed to trim the casings a bit. The load was fine after that but I have switched from RL22 to H1000. Started working up loads from 74 grains and finally settled at 77.7 grains and 2940 fps. Anything loaded up from there started causing sticky bolt again. I can shoot XP3 180 gr ammo at 3000 fps but I can't work up a load past 2950 without getting the sticky bolt. I wish like hell I could sneak in and steal about 50 pounds of winchesters powder and a bunch of XP3 bullets. That's about the only way I could load up anything with the velocity and consistency that their load has. I have decided that is the one caliber that I am going to just buy off the shelf because I can't build anything even close that will shoot from the Savage. The tolerance in this particular chamber is just very low. Went and had it checked by a gunsmith and he said it was the least forgiving he has ever seen, but that is why it puts holes in the holes with the XP3 ammo.
     
  6. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Hat makes me nuts is that no matter how meticulous I am about case prep, powder measure and loading, the is always about a 20-40 fps variance in velocities with my loads. Seems like there should be a better way to get closer groups in terms of velocity.
     
  7. Mutt

    Mutt Member

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    I don't get it, Carman.
    How can you be so meticulous but blow right by case length? How can you shoot sub minute groups but post issues with your load? How far are you printing these sub minute groups? 100? or a real long range? If you're not shooting long you should I wonder if you're still sub moa at long range with velocity issues and consistency issues like that. It won't show up negatively at close range but long distance will make an honest load out of it. I apologize man...I'm just lost as to how such a super performing load and an experienced handloader such as yourself can print groups so well but kick out such ugly Velo, ES, SD...ugly enough to make you question it yet still defend it. I'm not being a smart a$$ this time...I'm really, really lost and looking for answers.

    A couple things to consider to tighten up your numbers-
    I'd, at the very least, consider them ~maaaaybe~ even try some before dismissing them out of hand:
    Neck tension (consistency!, You can fine tune the amount with a NS bushing die...even an FL bushing die)
    Neck turning (esp since you have that super tight factory match chamber you're barking with).
    Anneal. (some do, some don't...but since a monkey can handle the task with a little focus and since bullet seating is NOTICEABLY smoother, I DO IT!)
    Check your brass length before and AFTER you drag that expander ball through your necks. I bet you find something there. (Those damn balls are only good for UNdenting a bent mouth or two, IMO)
    Consider Neck sizing with a bushing die (FL or NS only) or Lee's collet die (cheap and VERY good)
    Sort your projectiles by bearing surface
    Seat to a consistent depth (into consistent cases)
    Try brushing the inside of your necks with a nylon brush with some 0000 steel wool wrapped in it.
    Check your case capacities and sort/cull/load accordingly
    Make sure there's no lube/oil in your tube, chamber, and bolt body. (run a patch of denatured alcohol through followed by dry patches until it's dry)
    Have you checked your headspace?
    Have you uniformed your primer pocket?
    Debur'd the flash holes?
    Some tubes need copper "fouling" in there others need zero.

    I heard tell of story one time where a fella couldn't get his stick to group under expectations for anything. Someone suggested cleaning out all the copper and using just one type of bullet as he was shooting sighters with factory ammo to "warm up" then switching to his handloads to do his testing. As it was explained the differing copper properties can cause an issue with consistency that's damn near untraceable. I don't recall his outcome but I called BS at first and tried it myself because I had the same type of problem with one of mine and I'll be damned if it didn't tighten up the groups of my old, old Weatherby. Hocus-pocus? Voodoo? Maybe...I thought the same thing. Learning.

    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2012
  8. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

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    Mutt

    get rid of the expander ball, change over to a straight decapping w/o expander. All of the die mftrs normally sell that setup as aftermarket conversion. Use an expanding mandrel to open the necks. I use the K&M mandrels as they match my K&M neck turners.
     
  9. SidecarFlip

    SidecarFlip Well-Known Member

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    I'm a bit puzzled as to how someone can be so meticilous and not check case length as all bottleneck cases grow..... I keep a set of Starrett Calipers on the bench constantly........
     
  10. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Well...I am not as experienced at loading as you might think. The guy that got me into reloading died shortly after from cancer and there is a lot I have yet to learn. I clean primer pockets, chamfer and denier meticulously but he never said a word about case length (learned that in the past few days). Checking headspace...no idea how so I took it to a gunsmith. That is who told me this is the most low tolerance chamber he has ever seen. I can get on here and read about stuff but don't know anyone else who reloads that I can go watch and learn. As far as shooting...that is the easy part.
     
  11. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    I have calipers and use them to check COL as I am loading but case length never was mentioned by my friend that got me started as it never was an issue until recently. Until just a few months ago, I reloaded for my AR15 and my 9MM. Have not had any issues whatsoever with them as I load fairly light in both. The 300 win mag is the first thing I loaded where it was an issue. Believe it or not, I have some .223 cases that I have reloaded as many as 8 times and they still have no stretch. I chamfer and deburr them and that along takes care of any small stretch that may have occurred.
     
  12. boomtube

    boomtube Well-Known Member

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    "...but for grins, I seek perfection. "

    You need to check on getting a CNC lathe and turning your cases with better precision than they get stamped out by the present makers. Case variation has a bigger effect on our loads than .01 gr. of powder. Primers vary too but I don't know what to suggest for obtaining higher precision primers.
     
  13. Carman

    Carman Well-Known Member

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    Well.....as I said, I switched from RL22 to H1000 and what a difference it made on the accuracy. The Savage just did not like the RL22 ( maybe it was the temperature variation issue with RL22. I started with 77 gr of H1000 and worked up in .2 gr increments. When I got to 77.9 gr, I started having issues with the sticky bolt again, but no other pressure signs at all. The MV with the 77.9 gr was 2977. I started backing off .1 gr at a time and decided to go with 77.6 gr. I shot five rounds with this load, and had MV from 2937-2948, which is the tightest group of MV that I have ever gotten loading the 300 Win Mag. All of these loads were using the Nosler E-Tip, so I am getting pretty close to the Winchester factory load specs of 2950 fps. I am pretty happy with this load, but still can't shoot this load as well as I can the Winchester XP3. Damn it all! I wish I could come upon a train wreck carrying those bullets and that powder. I would be shoveling it into the back of my truck for sure. I absolutely love shooting those XP3's but paying $54 for a box of 20 is sinful.