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Old September 25, 2002, 11:32 PM   #1
larryw
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Precision powder throws

I'm finding that the +- .3gr accuracy of my Dillon 550B when loading extruded powders is nowhere near accurate enough for my needs. This is especially evident in my .223 where .1gr can make a full inch difference in my groups and the max load gives me 5-shot groups that can be covered by a dime.

Currently I'm throwing the loads light and adding powder with a baby-food spoon until I get the right weight. But, this is slower than mud.

What do you do when you want to load 100+ rounds of rifle in a minimum amount of time with powder charges that are right-on?

thanks,
LW
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Old September 26, 2002, 01:33 AM   #2
labgrade
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I've had wierd success with extruded powders in throwers & have yet to try 'em in my 550 .... time'll tell.

I've a Reading thrower that does very well with the finer stuff, runnig a single stage use, but when doing extrudeds, I'll set the thing to throw, sometimes 2 grains low, & use a powder trickler.

Same-same using Lee's powder scoop kit &, at the low end, use the trickler to fill the pan to the right weight.

Sometimes that's the best you can do.

I'd appreciate any further input too, other than a change of powder - & then again, I'd appreciate that info too.

Never used some of the latest powders that seem to flow ... stuck in the early 70's I am ....

(... which is no help at all for a progressive - edit = time delay due to a dying PC .... )

Last edited by labgrade; September 26, 2002 at 02:03 AM.
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Old September 26, 2002, 08:47 AM   #3
Dave P
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Just about any powder measure will be at least +- .1 gr, esp with long stick powder. Harrells are some of the best, but still not normally better than +- .1.

Trickling after throwing out of a good machine is prolly the most cost effective.

BTW, most rifles have a couple of sweet spots for each bullet/primer/powder/length combo, where +- .3 gr or more makes no diff to the groups. The ladder method will show you these sweet spots.
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Old September 26, 2002, 08:59 AM   #4
RemVssf
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I too have a 550B and I don't use the powder set up. Almost use it like a single stage. I load 308 w/ Varget and what I do is size and prime(50 at a time) and then take the cases in(workshop is too small for everything) to where I have my RCBS powder measure and PACT scale. Set and weigh and then measure every 10th charge. Thenh take back out and load the rest of the way. I usually load around 250 at a time. Sure it's slow but ... works for me.I have a friend that has "tweaked" his 550 to be consistant w/ Varget... how?? He says he'll drop by and set mine up this weekend. He says he polished the slide of the powder bar ??? let you know morw later. Other choice is to use another powder. Am having great results with Benchmark.
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Old September 26, 2002, 12:00 PM   #5
cheygriz
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Why on earth would you use extrudred powders in the .223 anyway? The Dillon measure will throw +- .1 with virtually all ball powders. Ball powders also burn cooler, and at least in my experience, offer equal or greater accuracy in the .223.

I have, over the last 40 years, years worked up extemely accurate ball powder loads in .223, .243, 6MM Remington, .25-06, .30-30, .308, .30-06, and .45-70. I haven't been able to achieve the same accuracy level as extruded powder in the .338 WinMag or .375 H&H, but I'm still working on it.

I've never found ANY powder, ball or extruded, that will surpass the accuracy level of H-335 in my .223 rifles. AAC# 2230 comes close, though. Just mt personal experiences. YMMV
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Old September 26, 2002, 02:20 PM   #6
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Ball powders are dirtier.

Try getting a Lee Perfect powder measure and the auto die for it. Should work better.
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Old September 26, 2002, 03:00 PM   #7
Steve Smith
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Dirtier, shmirtier...switch to ball, or at least ar eally short stick.

There's always the Prometheus powder measure.
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Old September 26, 2002, 08:09 PM   #8
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Yes the Prometheus works great, but, I am not shooting rifle much anymore so mine is for sale.
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Old September 26, 2002, 08:25 PM   #9
Steve Smith
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How much are you selling it for (just curious)? Does it have the charge thrower, or just the scale part?
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Old September 28, 2002, 11:13 PM   #10
slickpuppy
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It has the charge thrower and the electronic control system. Haven't set a price. I think it was around $1100 or $1200 a couple of years ago. It is incredibly accurate.
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Old October 1, 2002, 06:35 PM   #11
larryw
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cheygriz, this is why I'm using an extruded powder (IMR4198) behind a 40 gr V-Max bullet; that's a dime on the right side. These groups were shot during a gusty afternoon and the wind was winning. But it calmed down long enough for the group on lower right, which is what I'm used to seeing.

I'm not a big fan of the ladder method, preferring instead to evaluate five shot groups of varying charges. Doing this, sweet spots become readily apparent and the targets are easily referenced at later dates.

After reading these comments, I worked up loads using H322, H335 and Benchmark and did not get results that matched 4918. Regardless of powder, in my gun (Rem 700 VS) I found with the 40gr bullet, +-.1gr is the difference between dime-sized and over-quarter-sized groups.

Anyways, I picked up a Hornady powder trickler and that is speeding things up over the baby-food spoon method I was using.

Thanks all for the tips.

LW
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Old October 6, 2002, 10:38 AM   #12
Fatelvis
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I must be surrounded with alot better shots than me, on this site. I KNOW +/- .3 of a grain of powder, wouldnt be noticed in my target shooting, much less +/- .1 of a grain! If you are looking for bench rest presicion, you`re better off throwing every charge a little light, and trickling it to the target weight. That kind of precision is going to take time, no way around it.
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