Humbling experiance the other day. Maybe someone else can learn from this!

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Michael Eichele, Dec 11, 2008.

  1. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    No matter how many loads you have made and shot, rifles you have owned, developed loads for and tested, how old you are, and how much experiance you have, once in a while you just miss the boat and then something comes along that seems so bizzare and unexplanable. I had a potentially dangerous experiance the other day and figured out the source. Yes I felt stupid and humbled, but I wish to share this beacuse A: I have no shame and B: I hope someone else can learn from this and not find themselves in a dangerous situation.

    In all the years I have been reloading and shooting and testing various rifle types and calibers, I have always re developed a load when I changes lots of powders, cases and primers. The one thing I never thought to re develop for was bullets. I always just assumed manufacturing procedures lended themselves to making concistent bullets from lot to lot unlike chemically based components.

    The last couple of weeks I have been developing loads for my new barrel on my 300 RUM. I worked up slowly to find the max charges for 3 powders. All yeilded decent to good accuracy. I ran out of bullets and bought some new ones. Went home, loaded them up to the max charge, went to the range and the pressure and velocity went through the roof. 95 grains of RL-25 originally offered 3377 FPS (avg). The new velocity was 3485 with a 180 AB. It took a bit of sweat to get the bolt back. I had to reduce all my loads by 2 grains. I was scratching my head trying to figure out what happend. Finally I figured it out. I was seating my bullets .020" off the lands. The new bullets at the same OACL measument (3.740") was now .002" off the lands.

    Granted, I didnt damage my rifle or myself, it could have been ugly. The lesson here is always check a new lot of bullets to see if they will be closer to the lands. Personaly, I may be seating ALL my bullets long and just shove them into the lands during chambering to avoid this problem and just work up loads with them into the lands. Not sure if I will do this or just reset my die for new bullets. More experiments are in order.

    Later
     
  2. eddybo

    eddybo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for reminding me of that important tid bit. I am preparing to load up for a PD trip and just bought 500 52gr 22cal bergers. I was just going to load them up using my same brass and powders and primers. I hadnt even thought to check my load with the new bullets. It would have been sad to get 1/2 way across the country and have my primary short gun popping primers. I will make sure I give them a try before I load tem all. You may have saved me a lot of wear and tear on my bullet puller. Thanks for sharing.
     

  3. trueblue

    trueblue Well-Known Member

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    Meichele,

    Were these bullets of a different brand, or the same brand & weight, just out of a different box ?
     
  4. Forester

    Forester Well-Known Member

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    Same question. That much variation seems like an awful lot from one lot of bullets to the next.?
     
  5. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    Same brand, model, weight.
     
  6. gbp

    gbp Well-Known Member

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    was there a difference in ambiant temperature? or was the cartridge allowed to rest in a hot chamber for an extended time?
     
  7. 4xforfun

    4xforfun Well-Known Member

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    WOW!!!!!

    I had a similer experiance. I do the loading for a guy....7mm Rem Mag/H1000/ 150 NBT (MOLY) at XXXX. Ya, they were up there neer the edge. He needed me to load another batch for the upcoming season, but doesn't show up untill the night before season.....not with Balistic tips (which I usaly moly for him), but with precoated Balistic Silver Tips. They were new at the time, and I hadn't even herd of them. I gave him that puzzled look....Told him I need to do some load development with them, because I KNOW that when you are on the edge.......!!!!!?????..... He absolutly refused....said that the guy at Cabellas that sold them to him said that they were EXATLY the same. I wonderd (to myself) if this salesman came in from the Camping department to fill in for the day!!! "LOAD EM UP...THEY WILL BE FINE" he told me!!! He shot it 4 times....all four blew the primers and left HUGE extractor marks with some of the brass flowing into the ejector hole. He comes back to me...........and gave ME that puzzled look......If I remember right he had an "upside down smile" above his right eye.:D:D Since he still had all of his fingers , toes, and , more importantly, A FACE, I made fun of him, and his newest, bestist buddy at Cabellas.


    OK.....So I am an ASS H*LE:D:D
     
  8. LewisH

    LewisH Well-Known Member

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    "Shoving them into the lands during chambering" is called "jam fit seating", and is a technique favored by some benchresters. It often yields the best accuracy, but I've abandoned it for PD loads after having too many bullets stick in the chamber, filling receiver with powder after extracting a loaded round. :D

    I would never use this technique for big game loads.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008
  9. mrdeeds

    mrdeeds Member

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    I had a similar experience a few months back in my 22-250. Though i didn't have any pressure problems, my accuracy went to Sh** to say the least. At the time I was measuring COAL from head to tip..so when I ran out of 50g. v-max, I went and bought more, loaded to the same "COAL" a went shooting...that's when the above happened.

    So after some head scratching, I go out and buy a bullet comparator and start checking Head to Ogive lengths from the old lot of reloads to the new. What I found was, even though COAL was the same the head to ogive measurement was different my a margin of .020!

    Moral of the story...use a bullet comparator when measuring OAL. That way you always measure of the part that's parked in or in front of the lands..

    Nate
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008
  10. Willys46

    Willys46 Well-Known Member

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    I saw you said they were Accubonds. I live in Or and business takes me to bend quite often and while there I stop by the Shooters Pro Shop at Nosler. I usally by the seconds for shooting (they have over runs of first for winchester quite often. Different color tips (red)).

    I was getting unexplained vertical at 600 yrds so I started measuring the bullets Base to Ogive with a stoney point comparater. I found them to vary wildely even within lots! I now sperate them by weight and base to ogive. You can pick up seconds for $13.25 per 50 for 160 7mm AB. This allows me to be selective with weight and measurement.

    When this came up i talked with the old guy that worked in the store. He was a long range guy and he was supprised by the variance and was heading home to measure his..He was getting vertical problems as well.

    What i found is there tolerances are based of hunting situations not Benchrest. The average guy would never know the difference.

    Another side note. When you buy Nosler brass. They say its weight sorted which it is but not weight sorted between lots. Its weight sorted PER BOX. So if you want a 100 peices you take the risk of the two boxes being different weights.

    Willys
     
  11. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    I do not let cartridges sit in a hot chamber.

    Ambient temps were within 5 degrees.

    NOTE: The original bullets at my OACL measurment were .020" off the lands. The new ones, at the same OACL were .002"
     
  12. kraky2

    kraky2 Well-Known Member

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    I've seen where new "lots" of bullets can have longer base to ogive measurements. BUT, I don't think that .018" diff in seating depth is gonna crank up that kind of pressure and velocity diff. Maybe if the bullet was actually jammed in the lands? I guess the way to find out if that really was the diff would be to just seat the new bullet .018" deeper.....but I think something else is at play here.
     
  13. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    Bear in mind I am shooting a big tempermental case at MAX loads. It doesnt take much to send them over the edge.

    I did however seat them back .020" and the velocity went down conciderably. The velocity with the new lot is still higher than the last one but MOST of the velocity spike was from being right off the lands.
     
  14. kraky2

    kraky2 Well-Known Member

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    I had an experience once with my 30-378. I was also shooting 200 ab's with max loads. Everything was going fine with probably 20 rounds down the barrel. It was winter and I was letting the barrel cool. I could shoot 2-3 shots and then let it sit.
    Anyhow all of a sudden the chrono showed a quick gain of about 40 fps and an ejector mark appeared. Well maybe my scale hung up a bit and I got a bit more powder in that one. The next one jumped about 80 fps and the bolt was really sticky. I stopped there and pulled the last 6 rounds down when I got home.
    Only thing I can think of that might have happened is my barrel fouled out and that big long AB just didn't want to go down the tube as ez as the earlier shots.
    Obviously this wasn't what happened to you but it is the kind of thing you can run into when playing with the big overbore cases. When you got so much case and velocity you should be happy to stop 50-100 fps shy of max loads but so many of us like to keep the pedal to the metal!
    For me it was another lesson about valid hunting loads. We all know that sometimes we can't keep our barrel as clean in the field as at the range. Temp changes, moisture, dust....you name it can all come into play. (Like 4 straight days of Alska rain on one trip!) Finding loads at the range that run redline are kind of useless out there in the field.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2008