Identifying loads during load development

memtb

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2013
Messages
1,773
Location
Winchester, Wy.
How do you mark or identify different loads during load development? Separate boxes, mark the cases or bullets, color coding? Wondering what others are doing and how you keep them from possibly getting mixed up if an accident happens and they spill or someone starts taking them out and looking at them only to maybe put them back incorrectly. Powder, powder charge, primer, seating depth, etc.

I usually load and test in groups of 20. For that 20 round test group, the only variable will be the charge weight! If I go to a different component, that group of 20 will have the same component.

I use a small point magic marker, marking the cases with a small line similar to the Roman numeral 1. No marks indicates the lowest charge, one mark indicates the next higher charge. If you test which 5 rounds per charge, you’ll end up with 3 lines on each of the heaviest loaded case. Obviously, if you test in groups of 3.....you’ll end up with the heaviest loaded group of 3 cases with 5 lines, with 2 cases left over. To keep your fire count equal on your cases, load your remaining 2 cases with whichever load you may want to reverify, or step up to your next higher charge! Mark accordingly!

When testing seating depth, the same system could be used. memtb
 

EWY

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2017
Messages
54
I color code the primers and write down the particulars of each load as it corresponds to the colored primer.
 

BHP9

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2007
Messages
280
Location
Ontario, Canada
I load in a group of 10.

I use the MTM 50 rd Case Gard R-50.

I made cards with 10 columns and 5 rows, with the load overlapping 2 rows, for a total of 5 different loads.
 

RYEWSKY25284

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2014
Messages
607
Location
Albuquerque,NM
How do you mark or identify different loads during load development? Separate boxes, mark the cases or bullets, color coding? Wondering what others are doing and how you keep them from possibly getting mixed up if an accident happens and they spill or someone starts taking them out and looking at them only to maybe put them back incorrectly. Powder, powder charge, primer, seating depth, etc.
I load in lots of 5. Each lot has a load data sticker. I chronograph my 5 shots for each group, then I make a note of "upper left target" lower left target and so on. After i've done all of my shooting/load testing I place the corresponding load sticker on the target and write on that target the 5 shot velocities with ES & SD...I then define the groups by
"poor accuracy"-"good accuracy"-very good accuracy & extremely good accuracy.
=PA, GA, VGA or EGA.
 

wonderman4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2013
Messages
196
Location
South Texas
A shooting buddy always made a card to put in his MTM box with the loads.

One day he knocked it off the bench and all came tumbling down. He had no way of knowing what was what, so he packed up and left.

Now he marks the primers as I do. Different colored Sharpie for each load along with a legend on a card in the box.

When we get back, we can measure the cases and tell what powder charge did what.
 

BigJake54

Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2012
Messages
15
My technique is similar to memtb. I test in groups of 25, with each 5 shot group varying in powder charge by .5 grains. No other variables. I place the each 5 shot group into a loading block I made with the lowest charge in the first row to the highest charge in the fifth row. No one touches these except me. I record every round I load into a notebook, which then gets transferred to an Excel spreadsheet (separate tab for each gun). At the range, I mark each target with the load, date tested, range conditions, etc. All results get recorded in my spreadsheet before further testing.
 

Mike AVM

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
117
Sharpie on the bullet for ease of cleaning. No case marks. Dots, dashes, numbers and letters all work. I have them in ammo cases and the load log has the mark annotated per load, along with all the particulars, including expected velocity and barrel timing from QuickLoad. I use OBT method plus OCW to arrive at good loads pretty fast.
 

Fatso

Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2016
Messages
9
I use a plastic cartridge box with 10 divisions, 5 slots each. Inside the lid I place a piece of paper that is divided exactly like the holder below and numbered 1 through 10. I then place up to 5 loads for each of the 10 divisions. The numbered divisions correspond to my load data sheets. After firing, the empties are placed back in their respective slot upside down. This allows case inspection that also corresponds to a given load.
 

crkckr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2014
Messages
338
Location
In the woods outside of Warrenton, MO
I keep a card for each 50 round box and ID each row with powder charge, powder, case, primer, and OAL. I also put a date, caliber or specific rifle, and what's to be tested, accuracy or chronograph Each case (sometimes 3 rounds, sometimes 5) is ID'd with a row number. That way if 'ol fumble fingers manages to spill the box, they can all be put back in the correct row. The cards are also marked with a box number as well. When shooting, I will put up several sheets (4 target diamonds on each 100yd sheet) and then mark each sheet as T1, T2, etc. When actually shooting, I keep a sheet of paper on a clip board and write down the box number and row for each target dot (T1A,T1B etc.) and put wx data, rifle, range and whatever else might be important on the sheet. I can bring in a cardboard backer board with up to 8 sheets on it, measure groups, transfer all the load data and such, then I add all of the target sheets to a manila folder for that specific rifle. I also have a seperate info sheet that I keep the data on, usually by bullet type or weight. On some rifles I also have a log book where I keep all load data, wx & group size and any cleaning data. On some targets I will also keep track of each shot on my clipboard if I'm getting 3 & 2 groups or other weirdness.
I will admit to chasing after my little box data card when the wind grabbed it but I'm usually very careful with them. I'm much too old (and lazy) to be chasing down a wind blown card these days!

As to the cases, i put a small nick on the rim of the case with a fine dremel cutting wheel each time the case is sized. On some rifles I weight sort the brass and will engrave the group or weight of the case on the base of each case.

My bottom line is to keep note of anything that can make a difference in group size or velocity info.
Cheers,
crkckr
 

Almondgrower

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2018
Messages
131
Location
CA
I mark each round with sharpie with each charge weight . I then put them in a Ammo box or zip lock bag with a card with all the load info . You would be surprised how many times you will knock over loaded Ammo when not marked (lol). Sharpie stays on the brass even threw most tumbler media and is then harder to remove . B-12 chemtool is fantastic for removing sharpie prior to brass prep . I use a camera setup for long target shooting to plot shots on my iPad ( works really well ) but before that I used jumbo sharpies in various colors to mark the bullets and it prints on the target surprisingly well .
 

Alibiiv

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Jun 17, 2013
Messages
1,504
Location
Rhode Island
I work a load 20 cases at a time, using a 20 round Plano cartridge box. I put a strip of masking tape down the side of bottom case holder. I draw a line at every 4 cartridges and then mark the powder load within the spaces between the 4 cartridges. I only work a load using one powder at a time. For me to do otherwise it can get a bit confusing, plus it makes a lot of work changing powders and loads. When I have the cartridge box full with my loaded ammunition, I ALWAYS tape the box shut with masking tape, it doesn't open or spill this way.
 

birdiemc

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2011
Messages
905
Location
San Antonio, TX
If I had 20 rounds, I use Sharpie and write on the case numbering them 1-20. Then have a spreadsheet on my phone with all the necessary data numbered 1-20. Then as I'm shooting I pull out the phone and plug in velocities for each shot fired, when I look at targets I plug in group sizes or whatever data I happen to be gathering at the time...then I start running my graphs and analysis
 

misterc01

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2019
Messages
678
Location
Florida Panhandle
Separate boxes. Track reloads when I fill in my reloading checklist as I load. Reload in increment of 100 round boxes for loads I a going to shoot with. For load development, I have a separate set of 20 round boxes. Label the boxes by row. 5 loads per row 4 rows per box. I shoot in 5 round increments.
 

SealTeam4

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2016
Messages
777
I use 100rd boxes for load development. 3-4 rounds of each charge weight. I used to write the charge weight on each case but now I use a journal for each barrel and make my target at home with a dot for each charge. Below the dot I write the charge weight in bold letters easily legible at 100yds.

I like the idea of color coding primers to distinguish how many firings my brass have. I’ll be incorporating that into my practice
 
Top