ELDMs Blowing up mid flight

Tikka300man

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Mar 25, 2012
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15
My 28 nosler has approximately 120 round down the tube as of today. Its a 26" proof 1:8. The first 100 rounds did well, mainly for load development, zeroing, etc. I've been using 1 box of Hornady 180 ELDMs (just opened a new box for these last 20 rounds), N570, with ADG brass. My 180's are from several different lots (tough times finding bulk supplies).
As of now, my load with 82 gr of N570 is pushing the 180's to 3130 fps.
Today at my local range I was finally setting the zero stop on my scope. These rounds were with the new box of 180 ELDMs. First 3 rounds were fine, made and adjustment, then I get this on the target, 3 inches high, when I have yet to touch the elevation:
View attachment 298557

At first, I thought the bullet just tumbled. Well, it did tumble, but it was also coming apart. Upon closer examination, you can see the gray marks on the paper when part of the jacket impacted the paper, with a shape that is not just a tumbling bullet. Started to think well, may be it was due to me recently stripping down the barrel and just shrugged it off.

Went 5 for 5 with no issues. Even let the barrel get rather warm during that string too. It was fine. Then the next 3 groups of 3 had issues, with at least 1 round going way off target and never making the paper. I had a friend observe the impacts as well.

I was lucky enough to catch another separation on paper. This one you can clearly see the gray marks on the paper where the deformed jacket was striking the paper.

View attachment 298559

Has anyone else had this problem? I've read about 28 noslers having ELDMs blowing up completely when speeds exceed 3200 fps. I'm also aware that QA/QC has probably gone down the drain too, given the state of the industry.
With this experience, the expense to shoot this rifle, and me needing to have it dialed in before November, I ordered 150 rounds of 177 gr hammer hunts. At least with solids the odds of them coming apart are slim mid flight.
The one thing I can promise you is that it is not caused by 'overspinning' the bullets. That is a myth that has been promulgated for many decades. To over-spin a bullet, you would need an extreme twist rate, much faster than your 1:8" and you wouldn't notice it at anything under 400 yards even then. Since there are far too many armchair experts out there, your best bet is to always go to the manufacturers. Clean your barrel thoroughly first to see if that helps; if not, you should contact Hornady to see what their recommendations are and if you're using the bullets out of parameter in some way unbeknown. If that doesn't work, you might also need to take it to a competent gunsmith.
Remember that enthusiasts only have so much experience; they might help but they may not; so always consult manufacturers who have far more experience and insight.
 

L.Sherm

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I guess this guys just a so called expert too.
 

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slowshot18

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The one thing I can promise you is that it is not caused by 'overspinning' the bullets. That is a myth that has been promulgated for many decades. To over-spin a bullet, you would need an extreme twist rate, much faster than your 1:8" and you wouldn't notice it at anything under 400 yards even then. Since there are far too many armchair experts out there, your best bet is to always go to the manufacturers. Clean your barrel thoroughly first to see if that helps; if not, you should contact Hornady to see what their recommendations are and if you're using the bullets out of parameter in some way unbeknown. If that doesn't work, you might also need to take it to a competent gunsmith.
Remember that enthusiasts only have so much experience; they might help but they may not; so always consult manufacturers who have far more experience and insight.
I take everyone’s opinion into consideration. A lot of people when armed with a keyboard are professionals in every subject. But on the flip side, every opinion gathered helps lead me in the right direction! I’ll be contacting hornady this week. My smith warned me of potential problems with the eldms especially when I go over the 3000 fps mark. I’m leaning more towards the lot of bullets that I have as the first 100 from a different lot did not cause any issues. I even pushed them to 3250 fps when doing my initial work up to find the stopping point. That was at 84.5 grains of n570. Backed it back down to 82. At this point I need to move on from the eldms a hopefully have decent luck with the 177 HH’s that’ll be here this week.
 

Frank in the Laurels

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Jul 15, 2007
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995
Maybe the jacket just can't handle being pushed that fast !! I've seen bullets spun to fast at high velocity but they never made it 25 yards from the back before they disintegrated..a little plasma blink...slow it down a 100 or change bullets...maybe you have a sharp edge on your rifling..could be a million things..
 

DJ Fergus

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Dec 25, 2015
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2,932
The one thing I can promise you is that it is not caused by 'overspinning' the bullets. That is a myth that has been promulgated for many decades. To over-spin a bullet, you would need an extreme twist rate, much faster than your 1:8" and you wouldn't notice it at anything under 400 yards even then. Since there are far too many armchair experts out there, your best bet is to always go to the manufacturers. Clean your barrel thoroughly first to see if that helps; if not, you should contact Hornady to see what their recommendations are and if you're using the bullets out of parameter in some way unbeknown. If that doesn't work, you might also need to take it to a competent gunsmith.
Remember that enthusiasts only have so much experience; they might help but they may not; so always consult manufacturers who have far more experience and insight.
I don't believe over spinning in and of itself causes this. When the bullets jacket gets deformed to the point that the jacket becomes perforated, the jacket will come loose more readily. In that case, spinning it faster would contribute to the jacket slinging off in a matter that's more sooner than later. With that being said, I still don't believe it's solely an problem of too much twist. And the remedy would be a thicker jacket or a barrel that's not chewing up the bullet.
 

MagnumManiac

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Actually, stability is a parameter that can vary either way from neutral. Stability is the property that describes a bullet’s response to a perturbation perpendicular to its flight path. If disturbed, the bullet will wobble ever so slightly and recover (positive stability) or it will diverge in the direction of the perturbation (negative stability.) If stability is neutral, the stability parameter is 1.0; less than 1.0 is negative stability, greater than 1.0 is positive stability. Most bullet people advise using a barrel twist rate for a particular bullet and velocity that results in a stability parameter of at least 1.3, and 2.0 or 2.5 is better (more stable.) The higher the stability the more resistant the bullet is to disturbances to its flight path.
Thanks for agreeing with me.

Cheers.
 

MagnumManiac

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I guess this guys just a so called expert too.
Pretty sure my old 13” twist Palma barrel was 1.2 or 1.4 with a 155g Palma bullet, either Sierra or Nosler.
Been a long time since I shot Palma, so my math could be off.

Cheers.
 

loonie

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Dec 15, 2012
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Montana
I was doing a powder ladder last week in a 7 Saum with a 8 twist 3 groove 180 ELDM and RL 26, curious how fast I could go before pressure. Shooting 600 yards working up in 1/2 grain increments 3032 FPS was the limit. Had 4 in a row blow up before the target. The barrel has low round count and the throat is good. The M's have thin jackets and are not suited for heavy skinned animals like elk. I found out the hard way !!! They were ok for deer and antelope. I have shot them faster in a 9 twist. Also had 105 A max blow up when pushed too fast. They are fragile so not the best for hunting .
 

slowshot18

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Location
Texas
I was doing a powder ladder last week in a 7 Saum with a 8 twist 3 groove 180 ELDM and RL 26, curious how fast I could go before pressure. Shooting 600 yards working up in 1/2 grain increments 3032 FPS was the limit. Had 4 in a row blow up before the target. The barrel has low round count and the throat is good. The M's have thin jackets and are not suited for heavy skinned animals like elk. I found out the hard way !!! They were ok for deer and antelope. I have shot them faster in a 9 twist. Also had 105 A max blow up when pushed too fast. They are fragile so not the best for hunting .
You’re confirming my thoughts exactly! I searched eldms blowing up last night on google. As many others have stated, it’s a problem especially with the .264 147’s and the .284 eldms. There was even reports of the 147’s coming apart in 6.5 creedmoors too, and the factory 147 loaded rounds in 6.5 prc.
Plenty other people were getting the “macaroni” shaped hits on paper at 100 yards just like I was, indicating that it is not a keyhole impact, but it is the lead core striking the target and the jacket never making it to the paper, even at 100 yards.
 

can1010

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Feb 27, 2012
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You’re confirming my thoughts exactly! I searched eldms blowing up last night on google. As many others have stated, it’s a problem especially with the .264 147’s and the .284 eldms. There was even reports of the 147’s coming apart in 6.5 creedmoors too, and the factory 147 loaded rounds in 6.5 prc.
Plenty other people were getting the “macaroni” shaped hits on paper at 100 yards just like I was, indicating that it is not a keyhole impact, but it is the lead core striking the target and the jacket never making it to the paper, even at 100 yards.
and if you read between the lines you start to notice that it is the heavy for caliber in each line that does it. I dont think it is the jacket like some suggest because they use the same jacket on the BTHP bullets and i have never had one come apart even at warp speeds.

this is an issue with a lot of factors coming together to cause the bullets to come apart but bullet design in the heavy for caliber is the one common factor
 
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