Oal first or charge weights first?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by txsendero, Feb 10, 2010.

  1. txsendero

    txsendero Well-Known Member

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    Should you go with a medium charge weight and test different bullet seating depths first, or work on charge weights first and then test seating depths after you find a good charge weight?
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  2. Greywolf18

    Greywolf18 Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    I just started reloading so I may be doing it wrong but this is what I did. I used max coal according to reloading books and played with the powder first. Took 2 best powder charges and varied the coal using both powder charges. Took 2 best of those groups and did 5 shots of each to verify which was better @ 200 (longest range here) and the better group won. It was a bit of shooting but I was still learning to reload so I wanted the extra practice, others have shorter methods I'm sure. I'm looking forward to hearing from the guys that have been doing this longer than I have.
     

  3. Fitch

    Fitch Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    Developing a load with the bullet set back from the lands 0.020" or so is what I do. I do it to be absolutely "sure" the bullet is not touching the lands. If the bullet is touching or jammed into the lands it can raise the peak chamber pressure 7,500 to 10,000 psi which is a lot.

    If load development is done with out the bullet touching the lands, and the bullet is moved out to touch the lands, it will reuslt in the peak pressure going up by 7,500 to 10,000 psi - this is not a feature.

    If this is a hunting load I'd recommend starting at 0.020" jump and after load development is done try increasing the jump in .010" increments to see if that makes a difference. Jamming the bullet for a hunting round into the lands can cause issues with clearing the rifle - there is a chance that emptying the chamber the unfired bullet will stay in the lands allowing powder to dump into the receiver when unloading and clearning the rifle..

    Fitch
     
  4. ivo

    ivo Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    I usually start with my bullets at max mag length with gives you enough room to extract a loaded round without worries of jamming your bullet and emptying your powder into your action. then I play with charge weight and tweak the loads from there.
    Ivo
     
  5. roaddog1m

    roaddog1m Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    Most barrels have a sweet spot somewhere between .012 and .030 where you will find the best accuracy. I'd also pick a place maybe around .020 and leave that as a constant. Start playing with one thing at a time but keep your barrel cool and clean. That is very critical. Also, not only powder charge but the burn rate is important. Just because the book tells you that a certain powder produced the best accuracy for them, doesn't mean a hill of beans to you.

    I would also say, don't spend all summer testing loads. Find a good one and go have fun! You can easily burn up a barrel and a bank account, looking for that magical load. Just find a good one and go kill something!

    Good shootin'

    Tom
     
  6. Fitch

    Fitch Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    +1 Well said.

    Fitch
     
  7. trueblue

    trueblue Well-Known Member

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    Re: Oal first or charge wegihts first?

    I start with the bullet seated on the lands, then work up in charge weight to find my top pressure load. Once I know that, you can back off the lands and do load developement.