The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old December 25, 2013, 09:05 AM   #1
Reef
Member
 
Join Date: April 29, 2012
Location: Milton, FL
Posts: 87
223 Loads shooting slow

OK, so I loaded up a batch of 223 and went to the range to chrono a few to check the load. The velocities were not what I expected.

• Brass- range, mixed head stamps, all trimmed to 1.750”
• Bullet- Hornady 55gr BT-FMJ w/c
• Powder- H335, 23.0 grains
• Primer- CCI 41
• Seating depth- 2.200” OAL
• Lightly crimped
• Loading Manual- Hornady 8th edition
• Range conditions- sunny, 45*F, light wind, low humidity, near sea level
• Chronograph- CED M2 placed about 15’ from the muzzle
• Gun- Sig M400 Enhanced, 16” barrel, 1 in 7” twist


Results of 18 shot string:
No issues with the rounds as far as feeding/ejecting goes, just the speed looks off.

High= 2444.0
Low= 2297.0
Extreme Spread= 147.0
Average= 2377.6
S.D.= 33.8
95%= +- 17.8

The load manual suggests a speed of 3000 fps with 22.4 and 3100 fps with 23.2. The test gun was a Remington 700 with a 26” barrel and a 1 in 12” twist. I don’t think it would make that much of a difference so that’s the reason for the post. Any suggestions or ideas are appreciated in advance.
__________________
1911 is Faster than 911
Reef is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 09:33 AM   #2
PA-Joe
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 9, 2010
Location: NEPA
Posts: 724
What is your barrel length. Add or subtract 25 fps per inch. Also 45degrees is on the cool side so velocities will be lower.
PA-Joe is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 09:39 AM   #3
SonOfGun
Member
 
Join Date: February 25, 2012
Location: Utah
Posts: 68
Your powder charge is below START load in a Speer #13 manual.

They list a 55 gr bullet with H335 START at 24.0 gr and MAX at 26.0 gr using a magnum primer.

I suggest using more than one manual for comparison.

With all the variables factored in you may or may not have the same results. All components will produce different results.

You would be amazed how much more velocity 10 more inches of barrel will produce. My long range rifle has a 30 inch barrel for that reason.
SonOfGun is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 09:40 AM   #4
steve4102
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 23, 2005
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 2,182
Yes, a 10 inch reduction barrel length can have huge affect on velocity.
That said 2300fps does seem kinda low.

Your 23gr load is the bare minimum according to Hodgdon. Work the load up towards max of 25.3 gr and see if things improve. I'm not a fan of loading Minimum loads.
steve4102 is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 09:54 AM   #5
andyjr11
Member
 
Join Date: March 27, 2013
Posts: 30
I agree with the low load wt. being the problem. I shoot the same bullet with a load 0f 25 gr. of 335 out of a 24" barrel and get over 2900 fps.
andyjr11 is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 10:38 AM   #6
cryogenic419
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 29, 2009
Location: NW Ohio
Posts: 401
Ran that through Quickload using the specs you supplied, the only real variance being case capacity and its showing 2529 fps.
cryogenic419 is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 10:43 AM   #7
rg1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 6, 2001
Posts: 752
In this situation TRUST Hodgdon's data for H335 with 55 FMJ bullets in an AR15 rifle. Hornady's data is low for an AR rifle. Maybe in their bolt action rifle using the exact combination they tested their data is correct? I'd start at 24 grains of H335 and work up to 25 grains looking for best accuracy. Using 25 grains you should be near 3000 fps in your rifle.
rg1 is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 10:53 AM   #8
Marco Califo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 4, 2011
Location: LA
Posts: 807
For what it is worth, the Sierra manual lists higher loads for their 55 grain bullets. For bolt guns they go past 27 grains. They have a separate guide for AR type, the main diff being lower velocities which are lower, mainly because you are talking about 24" vs 16.25".
http://accurateshooter.net/Downloads/sierra223ar.pdf
http://accurateshooter.net/Downloads...223rembolt.pdf
__________________
........................................................

Last edited by Marco Califo; December 25, 2013 at 02:37 PM.
Marco Califo is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 02:12 PM   #9
Reef
Member
 
Join Date: April 29, 2012
Location: Milton, FL
Posts: 87
Thanks for all the replies! I just looked over some of the other manuals and the Hodgdon’s Website, concur the charge is low. Going to start at 24 and work up from there. Again, thanks for the help and a very Merry Christmas!

Dave
__________________
1911 is Faster than 911
Reef is offline  
Old December 25, 2013, 11:38 PM   #10
chris in va
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 26, 2004
Location: Louisville KY
Posts: 12,513
Lyman 49

55gr SP
H335 24.3 3142 - 27 3270

Gotta be a misprint though, 130fps difference?
chris in va is offline  
Old December 26, 2013, 12:04 PM   #11
mehavey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 17, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,819
That spread in velocities tells me either: Ignition problems, or Chronograph problems.

Run some commercial/military ball over the chrono and see what you get.
Even at 16" you should approach 2,900 w/ SD's ~20-ish.

If still reading low, you've isolated the problem. Check battery (my Oehler like lithiums when cold)

If reading comes back "normal," up the powder charge and see if ignition improves. (You're already running a mag primer)
mehavey is offline  
Old December 26, 2013, 03:25 PM   #12
rebs
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 10, 2012
Posts: 2,207
23.0 grs is definately a very light load, start with 24.0 and go up in .2 gr increments
rebs is offline  
Old December 26, 2013, 04:21 PM   #13
RC20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 10, 2008
Location: Alaska
Posts: 2,017
Quote:
What is your barrel length. Add or subtract 25 fps per inch. Also 45degrees is on the cool side so velocities will be lower.
The OP listed his barrel length at 26 inches.

With a low charge and non magnum primers the variation is likely due to inconsistent light off.

Get it up a bit an maybe do the magnum primers and see how she goes.
RC20 is offline  
Old December 26, 2013, 04:30 PM   #14
mehavey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 17, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,819
I believe it was 16" ("Sporter") length
SIG M400 Enhanced
(Note also that his CCI-41 is already a mag primer)

But I agree w/ probability of inconsistent ignition due to combination of low charge weight/temp effects (although 45° ain't all that low)
mehavey is offline  
Old December 26, 2013, 04:33 PM   #15
Brian Pfleuger
Staff
 
Join Date: June 25, 2008
Location: Central, Southern NY, USA
Posts: 18,575
The OP lists his barrel length at 16". He's 10" shorter than the gun used in the data. It's not unusual to lose 50-75fps per inch with really short barrels. 25-50 per inch is a good average but that's with similarly length barrel. The shorter the barrel the more you lose per inch.

I wouldn't be the LEAST bit surprised to see a 16" barrel be at least 500fps slower than a 26" barrel, all else being equal, besides this being a semi instead of a bolt.

Sierra's data shows 2800fps from a 20" barrel and 24.2gr H335. So getting 4" less barrel and a very low charge of a slow powder... seems entirely believable to me.
__________________
Still happily answering to the call-sign Peetza.
---
The problem, as you so eloquently put it, is choice.
-The Architect
-----
He is no fool who gives what he can not keep to gain what he can not lose.
-Jim Eliott, paraphrasing Philip Henry.
Brian Pfleuger is online now  
Old December 26, 2013, 04:38 PM   #16
mehavey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 17, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,819
SIDENOTES: QL(default settings) thinks it should be in the mid 2,600's with that load/barrel.
Temp effect is projected to drop it ~35fps.

Last edited by mehavey; December 26, 2013 at 04:43 PM.
mehavey is offline  
Old December 29, 2013, 05:16 PM   #17
Reef
Member
 
Join Date: April 29, 2012
Location: Milton, FL
Posts: 87
Follow up on OP

Follow up from OP of 25 December:

Brass: Sorted range brass, using all LC for this test, trimmed to 1.750”
Bullet: Hornady 55gr BT-FMJ w/c
Powder: H335, starting at 24.0, 0.2 increases to 25.0
Primer: CCI #41
Seating depth: 2.250”
Lightly crimped
Loading Manual: Sierra Edition V, 6th printing
Range conditions: Overcast, 50*F, light wind, 95% Relative Humidity, Barometer 30.02
Chronograph: CED M2 placed about 15’ from the muzzle
Gun: Sig M400 Enhanced, 16” barrel, 1 in 7” twist

Wanted to validate the Chronograph so I shot a 5 shot string using Geco 55 gr FMJ.

The box of the factory ammo lists 3314 fps at the muzzle using a 23.6” barrel.

ALL ARE 5 SHOT STRINGS

Results using Geco Factory Loaded Ammo:
• High= 2868
• Low= 2821
• ES= 47.0
• Ave= 2844
• S.D.= 15.0
• 95%= +- 23.3
• 1.706” group (outside to outside -.224)

Reload Test #1 at 24.0gr
• High= 2735
• Low= 2668
• ES= 67.0
• Ave= 2696.8
• S.D.= 29.5
• 95%= +- 45.8
• .685” group

Reload Test #2 at 24.2gr
• High= 2751
• Low= 2635
• ES= 116.0
• Ave= 2684.4
• S.D.= 46.1
• 95%= +- 71.5
• .521” group

Reload Test #3 at 24.4gr
• High= 2787
• Low= 2694
• ES= 93.0
• Ave= 2747.6
• S.D.= 32.6
• 95%= +- 50.5
• .535” group

Reload Test #4 at 24.6gr
• High= 2784
• Low= 2720
• ES= 64.0
• Ave= 2764.2
• S.D.= 23.2
• 95%= +- 35.9
• .427” group

Reload Test #5 at 24.8gr
• High= 2813
• Low= 2764
• ES= 49.0
• Ave= 2789.2
• S.D.= 18.5
• 95%= +- 28.7
• .547” group

Reload Test #6 at 25.0gr
• High= 2839
• Low= 2775
• ES= 64.0
• Ave= 2809.6
• S.D.= 21.2
• 95%= +- 32.9
• .373” group

All targets were placed at 25 yards and using 2 MOA Red Dot Aimpoint optic (my disclaimer for large groups)!
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Targets.pdf (136.4 KB, 9 views)
__________________
1911 is Faster than 911
Reef is offline  
Old December 29, 2013, 05:27 PM   #18
mehavey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 17, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 2,819
You're within 50fps of where QuickLoad(default settings) thinks you should be w/ all loads, and ignition looks consistent.

Glad things are back in synch...
mehavey is offline  
Old December 29, 2013, 10:01 PM   #19
rg1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 6, 2001
Posts: 752
Nice follow-up post with technical info. Strange that many many reloaders with Hornady 55 fmj's in their AR's say 25 grains is their most accurate load. I feel this level is safe also with most all combinations of components, cases and primers. Do as you did though and work up. A lot of Hornady 55 FMJ loaders load to a shorter overall length with them from 2.200-2.230" and some like you load out to 2.250".
rg1 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:57 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.10798 seconds with 8 queries