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Old October 9, 2011, 08:59 PM   #1
Jbotto
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First reloads=SUCCESS. Still some issues...

Well I got out to shoot my first 20 reloads.

Remington .223 brass
24.3 grs of H335
55gr Midway Dogtown HP
Remington brass
CCI 400 primer

I had success! Just as accurate as factory loads shoot in my rifle, but ever 3-5 rounds I'd have one go off, make an 'off' sound and end up keyholing at the 100 yard target. They always hit close to the bullets that went straight, but why was this? I know what the sound at the shot was, it was the bullet tumbling in flight, so that question doesn't need to be answered. Just curious as to why this was happening. I was no where near the 4000fps max of the bullet, and I've shot 55gr bullets (factory loads) in my rifle before and never have had that happen. My rifle is a Stevens 200 which I believe has the 1:9 twist in it. That should still stabilize this bullet. Where am I off?

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by Jbotto; October 9, 2011 at 10:30 PM.
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Old October 9, 2011, 09:46 PM   #2
mrawesome22
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Which cartridge are you loading?
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Old October 9, 2011, 10:29 PM   #3
Jbotto
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Wow. My apologies, I'm reloading for the .223 Rem. I will edit original post.
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:01 PM   #4
mehavey
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One Question: What was the temperature?
One Suggestion: Use CCI450s (mag primers) with H335 to get dead sure/consistant ignition
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:03 PM   #5
mrawesome22
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My first guess would be the el cheapo bullets.

That's where I would start anyways.

Get some 53gr Hornady or Sierra match bullets and see if it goes away.

If it doesn't, about the only other thing I can think of is some sort of flaw in the bore.

And a question - Did you shoot any factory rounds through this rifle, and if so, did they do the same thing?
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:10 PM   #6
Jbotto
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I don't blame the CHEAP bullets, because they are Nosler made, and have heard great things about them from a bunch of different people. The temperature was about 65 F today. Also, as stated in the original post, I have shot factory ammunition through this rifle before and I've never had any bullet weight do this, from 45 grs to 68 grs.
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:12 PM   #7
Miata Mike
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I have loaded maybe 400 rounds now using between 24.5 and 25.0 grains of either H335/WC844 and my CCI small rifle primers have worked well in warmer temperatures. I know of no key holing in my loads. I used quite a few of the RP brass so I wouldn't need to remove primer crimps.

I use 55 grain fmj military pull bullets, which I can't imagine are any better that your Dogtown bullets. I think my DPMS has a 1:9 twist barrel also.

Don't know....

Last edited by Miata Mike; October 11, 2011 at 09:58 PM. Reason: Uber typo! Sorry!
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:28 PM   #8
mrawesome22
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Well you could get some better bullets and if that doesn't fix the problem, then you'll still have them when you do find your solution.

Quote:
I have shot factory ammunition through this rifle before and I've never had any bullet weight do this, from 45 grs to 68 grs.
Yeah, no way it's the bullets lol.
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Old October 9, 2011, 11:32 PM   #9
Jbotto
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Thanks everyone for your responses. I'm just kinda pulling my hair out wondering what I did wrong. Maybe it is the bullet. I don't know. I'll just keep trying things and I'll have it figured out in no time! (hopefully)
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Old October 10, 2011, 01:51 AM   #10
Habaz72
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Could shaving copper off the bullet during seating cause something like that?
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Old October 10, 2011, 11:46 PM   #11
capreppy
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Some things to check:

- concentricity after seating. If concentricity is way off, it could be off enough that it starts keyholing after. It obviously also affects accuracy
- OAL after seating

I use your recipe with a few different 55gr bullet profiles and don't have any issues with any of them. Good luck.
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Old October 11, 2011, 05:06 AM   #12
grumpa72
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MiataMike said "I have loaded maybe 400 rounds now using between 24.5 and 35.0 grains of either H335/WC844 and my CCI small rifle primers have worked well ...

I use 55 grain fmj military pull bullets,..."

Did you really load .223 with 35 grains of H335? If so, that exceeds the Hodgdon's recommendation by a factor of 50% or 10 grains.
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Old October 11, 2011, 09:17 AM   #13
jglsprings
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Quote:
I'd have one go off, make an 'off' sound and end up keyholing at the 100 yard target.
Did it sound like a light load or extra loud?

How are you reloading? Progressive or turret press? Single stage?

Have you checked your powder measure and scale for consistency? I have had a very BAD experience with a low end powder measure and got low and light loads.

P.S.

Usually I'd look at the bullets, like everyone else is suggesting, but given your description I'm inclined to start looking at all of the components and the process that you are using. Are all of the components new? Just thinking out loud here...
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Last edited by jglsprings; October 11, 2011 at 09:24 AM.
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Old October 11, 2011, 01:40 PM   #14
Jbotto
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I'm using a Bonanza Co-Ax press, Lee Collet dies, and all new components. I forget what scale I have, but I believe it's a Lyman beam scale. I'll check tonight. I've just been weighing each charge and using a RCBS trickler to finish it off to the measure. The loads felt normal to me. They were no quieter or louder and I know that for a fact as I shot my normal factor loads just before I tested the reloads.
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Old October 11, 2011, 03:17 PM   #15
243winxb
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Lee Collet die & Low neck Tension

Quote:
ever 3-5 rounds I'd have one go off, make an 'off' sound and end up keyholing
Lee Collet die- Light neck tension, low bullet pull. The firing of the primer is moving the bullet forward before the powder can build pressure to burn correctly. The 5.56 needs 45lbs bullet pull. Size the neck correctly or buy a custon undersize mandrel from Lee. Lee info >
Quote:
Collet Mandrel

The Mandrels for the Collet Dies are made to .002" to .003" under nominal bullet diameter as there is about .001" to .002" of spring back. When the case neck is finished being sized, we want the case neck to be .001" under nominal bullet diameter
This .001" neck tension is to light. The case neck should expand .002" after seating a bullet.

Last edited by 243winxb; October 11, 2011 at 03:22 PM. Reason: add title
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Old October 11, 2011, 10:03 PM   #16
Miata Mike
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Quote:
Did you really load .223 with 35 grains of H335? If so, that exceeds the Hodgdon's recommendation by a factor of 50% or 10 grains.
Oh my god, what a typo. Thanks for pointing it out grumpa72. Good thing is a guy could never put that much powder in a .223 case. As it is my loads are filled up to the shoulder of the case.
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Old October 11, 2011, 11:38 PM   #17
chris in va
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I was shooting at a scrap piece of sheet metal yesterday with my M&P Sport and noticed some keyholing as well. 24gr RX15 and 55gr FMJ. Weird. I guess those things couldn't wait to start tumbling!
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Old October 12, 2011, 07:54 AM   #18
sw282
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l have used their 50gr bullet for years . Never a problem..
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Old October 12, 2011, 09:04 AM   #19
jglsprings
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First you said:

Quote:
I'd have one go off, make an 'off' sound and end up keyholing at the 100 yard target.
Then you said:

Quote:
The loads felt normal to me. They were no quieter or louder and I know that for a fact as I shot my normal factor loads just before I tested the reloads.
Sorry, I guess I misunderstood your description of the problem.
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Last edited by jglsprings; October 12, 2011 at 09:13 AM.
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Old October 12, 2011, 01:08 PM   #20
Jbotto
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jglsprings: I see where you are coming from. The report of the rifle was the same as always, but the odd sound I heard was the bullet tumbling in flight. My apologies for not being clear. It sure makes a strange sound though!
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