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Old January 29, 2012, 09:35 PM   #1
Eazmo
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Chronograph! what do i want?????

OK so I've been reloading metallic for about a year now and have been thinking about a chrono as a to-me/from-me for my B-day next month.

so I'm looking for some recommendations?
Is there certain features i want to look for?
certain models better than others?
can i get a decent one for around a $100 bucks?


as you can tell i basically know squat about them.
I have never even used one so any tips or cautions greatly appreciated
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Old January 29, 2012, 09:42 PM   #2
mrawesome22
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Buy one where you have the display sitting at the bench with you.

Chrony alpha master does everything I need it to do.
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Old January 29, 2012, 10:21 PM   #3
jr05
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Pro Chrono Digital
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Old January 31, 2012, 11:10 AM   #4
COSteve
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Yep, the separate display on the bench is much better as you can control it without moving from the bench. A few ideas are to use soda straws instead of the steel rods so that if you hit one it won't break the plastic sensor housing and put tape at 4" and 6" above the sensors as this is the ideal area you want the bullet to pass over the sensors.



If I need the sky screens and it isn't windy, I just take some sheets of paper, fold them in half, and tape them to straw extensions.



Another real plus to getting a unit with a remote computer and readout is if you loan your chrono to a friend and he shoots it. That way he'll only have to replace the sensors for $50, not the whole thing.









Go ahead, ask me how I know.




He made good on buying another.

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Old January 31, 2012, 11:34 AM   #5
bossman
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Yep, the separate display on the bench is much better as you can control it without moving from the bench. A few ideas are to use soda straws instead of the steel rods so that if you hit one it won't break the plastic sensor housing and put tape at 4" and 6" above the sensors as this is the ideal area you want the bullet to pass over the sensors.


How do them straws hold out with a light wind. Seems that my outdoor range always has a light breeze, unless it's the dead of summer and you need one.
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Old January 31, 2012, 11:57 AM   #6
Brian Pfleuger
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I have a Shooting Chrony Beta.

If I were buying one today it would be a CED.
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Old January 31, 2012, 12:25 PM   #7
Unclenick
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Agree with Peetzakilla. I think most chronographs will work under the right conditions, but it is difficult to impossible for the average shooter to check their calibration to any better than about 50 fps (which you can do with a .22 rifle and .22 match ammo). That's probably good enough for most work as long as it's consistent as the light changes. That would require periodic re-firing of .22's during testing until you were confident the unit wasn't shifting readings.

I have both the Oehler 35P and the CED and find they agree with each other very closely under all conditions. Bryan Litz found the same thing during testing for his book, Applied Ballistics for Long Range Shooting. RSI's web site says a test (no reference) by the German military using Doppler radar (fraction of an fps accuracy) to evaluate chronographs for its armorers also found the Oehler and CED the most accurate about a decade ago. This would have been the original CED Millennium, like I have. The current one, the CED M2, has a four times faster 16 MHz clock and self-adjusts its sensitivity to lighting conditions and has a bigger memory than the old one. I've not used and M2, but I think Litz's is an M2, and it seems like they've tried to improve accuracy further.

Only problem for the OP is the CED is about twice his price limit. Of course the Oehler is six times more.
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Old January 31, 2012, 12:33 PM   #8
rclark
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I use the F1 Chrono. Has and does work really well. In fact, I am taking is out at lunch today to do some tests! I don't mind having to read it from a distance (of 10 feet), nor getting out of my chair to reset it as I have to go out and change targets anyway after a string. Got mine for $99, but see Walmart has 'em on line for $70. http://www.walmart.com/ip/F1-Chronograph/4382668 . BTW, I tested mine with another manufactures unit behind mine and they were within 20fps. Good enough for me.

The tape idea is a good one. First thing I did. Longest time is getting tripod legs where they need to be when setting up for use, so from rest your setup to shoot between the tape and then straight with the target .
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Old January 31, 2012, 12:50 PM   #9
David Bachelder
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I have a Chrony F1 and it works for me. You can spend more money for more bells and whistles if you want, but I doubt that they are that much better, long term.

I've shot my chrony rods four times. The first time I had the aluminum factory rods. Then I switched to wooden dowels. None of the four bullet hits damaged the unit.
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Old January 31, 2012, 02:50 PM   #10
Eazmo
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Thanks all, good input.

one more question: i live in Arizona, allot of bright intense sunshine and i shoot in the open desert.(no shade) Is this going to be an issue ?????
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Old January 31, 2012, 03:12 PM   #11
Tex S
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CED has worked well for me.
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Old January 31, 2012, 03:22 PM   #12
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I like the pro chrono digital because of the ability to use a PC connection to control it and save the data. I use it with a hand me down laptop. Had the chrono a couple of years now, just started using the laptop with it.

Whatever you get make sure it can be controlled from the bench.
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Old January 31, 2012, 04:04 PM   #13
sourdough44
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I have the Pro Chrony D, about $100 from Midway. I usually shoot in a private setting, so I just walk to it to look at the numbers. It works fine for me. It is essential to know where your gun is shooting before you shoot through it. I also keep it fairly close, just beyond muzzle blast range.
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Old January 31, 2012, 04:32 PM   #14
rclark
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I set mine up 'by the book' ... 10 feet away ... shoot 4-6" above sensors and it works well. As for conditions, I have shot mine on cloudy, real cloudy, and no clouds. Don't notice the chrono being affected. Always used the defusers.


Quote:
It is essential to know where your gun is shooting before you shoot through it.
That is a good point! I always have my revolvers sighted in before using the chronograph with them.

Quote:
Whatever you get make sure it can be controlled from the bench.
Not necessary at all. But each to their own . Read the number, write in notebook. Simple. String done, you go reset the chrono, and change out the target. Ready for next string. Once you get home, you plug the numbers into your handy dandy spreadsheet and get your average, SD, and ES numbers. This also gives you the choice of throwing out obvious bad readings (high and/or low) too. For example, at lunch today I recall for one test string, the shoots being around 1180 +- 30fps, but then had one 1055.... Now where did that come from ... throw it out. Oh my test strings are from usually 15 to 30 shots depending...

How do some of you guys manage to hit the chrono or the uprights? I mean, shooting 4" to 6" above the chrono, only 10 feet away, and shooting from a stable bench rest ... It almost seems impossible. Guess that is subject for another thread!
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Last edited by rclark; January 31, 2012 at 04:45 PM.
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Old January 31, 2012, 07:27 PM   #15
hounddawg
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Don't knock the computer interface til you have tried it I love the ability to just dump the numbers into my load database and make notes as the other shooters finish up.

Sometimes there may be 5 to 10 other shooters at the club, and I do load development at the bench. It is nice to have access to the numbers when doing so without having to wait for the range to go cold.

If I was shooting in a private setting it would not matter so much I suppose, or if I was just checking for power factor in pistol loads.
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Old January 31, 2012, 07:58 PM   #16
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CED M2 here, love it. Downloads all my data onto my hard drive at the end of the day.
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Old January 31, 2012, 08:13 PM   #17
totaldla
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I'm partial to Chronys. Here is some info that might give you a chuckle

Chrony Experience
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