How do the factories load "universal" high performance cartridges??

Vettepilot

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So we've all seen it advised a bazillion times; "....work up a load slowly in your gun, watching for pressure signs". And, "If you change any component, start over on load workup with a reduced charge".

Now sometimes it is difficult when reloading to match the performance, at least in terms of velocity, of factory loaded ammo. To be competitive, and keep the buying public happy, (and brand loyal), factory ammo has to have relatively high velocity performance for each given cartridge.

So how do they do it? How do they make rounds with respectable velocity, that are safe in "any gun of modern manufacture in good condition"??

I realize they use powders that we don't have access to, but where's the "magic"? High performance loads, that work in ANY gun, (and are safe) ,with no gun specific load workup.

What am I missing here??

Vettepilot
 
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bpcrshooter

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midwest
I have more than once seen ejector marks on factory loaded brass. I would assume that factory rifle makers are mandated to stay within a set dimension for SAMMI and if the cutters go outside of that, they are changed out. With that they can take their "high performance" load at either end and if no signs of pressure are noted, there good to go. Now do rifle manufactures hold true to that limit?? I dont know, seeing ejector marks on factory loaded ammo leads me to believe, no.

Maybe Im WAY off, if so I too have always wondered that.
 

Andrew Massi

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I've had high pressure issues from many of the hornady superformance line. Hornady has always offered to replace, before covid I traded them a case of superformance 223 77bthp for a case of match eld-m. This leads me to believe I wasnt the first to complain about that particular load and had a remedy already dialed up.
 

Jud96

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I believe they test a percentage of ammo from each lot to verify it’s pressure and velocity. If they keep pressures at or below SAAMI specs, they are good to go. I don’t know for sure, but when they start up a new lot they will tweak whatever is necessary to stay at safe pressures and within reasonable velocity of what they claim.
 

asd9055

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I have had primers pop out with some Hornady ammo in 300 Blackout
A bunch of us had really bad luck with Hornady in 300 WBY to the point I pulled the bullets, dumped the powder and primers and just used the cases.
Factory gives you average groups in many rifles...but some show pressure, in my experience.
If I am just harvesting deer in Texas, any ammo will do. Real hunts, different story
 

sierracharlie338

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I have more than once seen ejector marks on factory loaded brass. I would assume that factory rifle makers are mandated to stay within a set dimension for SAMMI and if the cutters go outside of that, they are changed out. With that they can take their "high performance" load at either end and if no signs of pressure are noted, there good to go. Now do rifle manufactures hold true to that limit?? I dont know, seeing ejector marks on factory loaded ammo leads me to believe, no.

Maybe Im WAY off, if so I too have always wondered that.
I dont have the answer either, but I get pressure signs on my Hornady Black ammo for my Grendel out of a LaRue. The signs are definitely there but the rifle functions perfectly. I have always wonder along the same lines of how the Gold Medal Match and Hornady Match ammo shoot so well out of such a wide array of platforms.
 

Jud96

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I dont have the answer either, but I get pressure signs on my Hornady Black ammo for my Grendel out of a LaRue. The signs are definitely there but the rifle functions perfectly. I have always wonder along the same lines of how the Gold Medal Match and Hornady Match ammo shoot so well out of such a wide array of platforms.
One reason Hornady Match shoots so well in their cartridges is because they took the time to test the bullets they load to see what bullet jump they preferred, then loaded their ammo with their bullets at those specs for rifles chambered in their cartridges.
 

sierracharlie338

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One reason Hornady Match shoots so well in their cartridges is because they took the time to test the bullets they load to see what bullet jump they preferred, then loaded their ammo with their bullets at those specs for rifles chambered in their cartridges.
That makes complete sense. Never would have considered that I suppose.
 

243winxb

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The burn rate between powder lots can be pressure tested in a closed bomb test.
Powder lots can then be blended to adjust a fast or slow lot.
Then ammo manufacturers pressure test & check velocity to match SAAMI standards.
My guess.
 

tankgijohn72

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Feb 11, 2014
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Larger manufacturers use conformal pressure gages to verify lot pressures in test barrels. Pressures are verified against CIP standards typically. Look on box. See attached from winchester box. CIP logo. Not sure what the BLE logo is. Look up EPVAT testing if you want to dig deeper. But, basics are there is a specialized test barrel with a pressure gage threaded into the chamber. Conformal gages contact the case, casemouth gets direct exposure to gas at the case mouth.
 

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Stammster

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Factory Hornady Superformance ammo in 270 and 30-06 always come out with extremely flat primers - in multiple guns. They seem to function fine, and have very high velocities (Magnetospeed). I personally would never reload that hot.

I’m not sure what powder they use, but it’s some high density ball powder 2-3 grains over anything we can buy for reloading.
 

huntintoo

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Only 2 of m y rifles have ever shot Factory ammo with consistent grouping under .50". I considered myself lucky with both of them. However both I reload for now, fun times trying to match factory speeds. (.243 Win. [Weatherby Vanguard] & .223 Rem. [Savage])
 

Warbird2006

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Apr 15, 2012
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So we've all seen it advised a bazillion times; "....work up a load slowly in your gun, watching for pressure signs". And, "If you change any component, start over on load workup with a reduced charge".

Now sometimes it is difficult when reloading to match the performance, at least in terms of velocity, of factory loaded ammo. To be competitive, and keep the buying public happy, (and brand loyal), factory ammo has to have relatively high velocity performance for each given cartridge.

So how do they do it? How do they make rounds with respectable velocity, that are safe in "any gun of modern manufacture in good condition"??

I realize they use powders that we don't have access to, but where's the "magic"? High performance loads, that work in ANY gun, (and are safe) ,with no gun specific load workup.

What am I missing here??

Vettepilot

Its called a chocolate loads :)
 

supersubes

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Nov 12, 2019
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Nevada
I think there’s a fairly significant difference in pressure characteristics between virgin brass and fired/sized brass. If you used virgin brass all the time, you’ be able to push it harder without pressure signs. I’m not talking about brass life either. I’ve noticed this repeatedly when working up loads in new rifles.
 

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