Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Inventing loads without a manual

  1. #1
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default Inventing loads without a manual

    I thought that might hook a couple of people.

    I have usually stuck to actual manual maximums in my reloading. The only time I previously flew blind was when Barnes came out with the TTX and informed us we MIGHT be able to increase max Barnes manual loads by a grain or two. The limited info on the .375 Ruger though has me searching for good data. This is compounded by my preference for Barnes bullets. I called Horanday and they were happy to give me data for Hornaday bullets, but their max loads proved pretty anemic and were not close to what I had been getting in my .375 H&H. Other sources, including this forum, listed loads but really had no justification for them being within pressure limits that I could see other than “looks OK to me”. Now I think I can read a primer, but I also think it is a pretty inexact science. The latest advice I read is from a national shooting magazine that opines that because the case capacity of the .375 Ruger is above .375 H&H, the H&H data can be safely used to work up loads up to or slightly above H&H max. Doesn’t this miss a lot of variables or is it accurate advice. The latest Barnes manual has a couple of loads, but with powders I do not prefer. I have a lot of H&H data and would love to use it if I can.

    What say yea? Murphy?

  2. #2
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    4,431

    Default

    Well, I load where no manual has ever gone before.

    Now before everyone starts saying how crazy and unsafe that is let me say I have some 'sperience.

    I have a formula to calculate how much of which powder in a case with X volume and Y bullet to give Z pressure and V velocity. (Sort of a built in Powley computer but with Hodgdons and Alliant powders.) I have done this many, many times and it works quite well. I've piezo crystal pressure tested these loads and I have strain gage tested these loads and I'm pretty sure of what the results will be. Did ya ever wonder how the bullet and ammo companies do it? Just like this. This is not seat of the pants it is scientific.

    The 375 Ruger and 300 grain Hornadys hits max at about 2660 fps from the 23" African barrel and 2570 fps from the 20" Alaskan.

    Actually starting at max loads for the 375 H&H works pretty well. With the standard H&H load of H4350 in the 375 Ruger velocities for the Ruger will be less than the H&H (due to the larger case volume). If you have a chronograph it is absolutely the best way to do load development working with standard calibers. If not you'll need to rely on the subtle indicators of primer, case and bolt lift. The 375 Ruger will not fill the case with many suitable powder where as the H&H did. The slightly slower powders such as 4350 (probably the single best powder for it) work best. RL-15 which was a fovorite for the H&H isn't as good in the slightly larger case and my guess is that Varget would not be either except for the lighter bullets 235 to 260 grains and then not as efficient as the H&H. I did not use Varget in the Ruger but as it compares with RL-15 I am guessing about it.

    Many folks put some powder in the case and fire it and the bullets hits somewhere close to where they want and they call it good....and it is it just isn't what is advertised in most cases. Such as loading the Ruger with a load that works but with no chronograph and not knowing it is less than the H&H in standard form.

    I was a little disappointed in the data from Hornady. It did not even equal their factory loads. It seems as if they want to sell the ammo. The truth is that the Ruger is only slightly faster/stronger than the H&H anyway but that is ok. Even equal to the H&H and beltless in a 30-06 action is an improvement. Honestly the main reason to shoot the H&H is because it is such a grand old caliber and can be found in great old classic rifles. The Ruger can likely never claim that.

    Nevertheless, it is what it is and it 's ballistics are well proven. I have always liked round numbers and shot an H&H improved fro a number of years just because it could easily launch the 300 grains at 2600 fps. I loaded it accordingly. That is where I want the 375 Ruger to be but it doesn't like 2600 fps from a 20 " barrel. So I guess it's 2550 fps for that one.

    Mixing variables. Well no, it isn't actually. There are always differences in gun chambers and barrel dimensions even in the same caliber form the same manufacturer. So those differences will just be there. A load that is perfectly fine in one Remington 30-06 may be over pressure in another Remington 30-06. We can't predict that we just adjust for it when it comes. Those differences won't cause a catastrophic failure or even a locked bolt and almost never even damage the brass (expanded primer pocket).

    After those differences all we have is internal case volume, bullet weight and construction type, and the same old powder. We are using the same bullets. We are using powder from the same can and we are using the same old Federal 215 primer. The only variable for this caliber over the H&H is the case volume. If you want to weigh an empty, fired case form each and fill to the top with water and weigh again, divide one into the other and calculate a % difference and adjust the powder charge by the same %, you'll be in the ball park. This an indication of what a powder charge will be, you then just treat it as a load from a manual, reduce by some amount and jump in. If that sounds unreasonable to you or you have qualms about such a technique, wait for all the data to be published and you'll see I was right. Please feel free to tell me so, I was right once before.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  3. #3

    Default base expansion...

    Dave,

    Have you considered measuring the base expansion from fired factory ammo and using that as a baseline for your load development?

    Using the same brass, same rifle, I have found this to be a useful tool. You have to have a good mic and be careful measuring and take good notes to be safe.

    There is more to it, but if you are interested myself or someone else can give more info on procedures.

  4. #4
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    4,431

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ozarks View Post
    Dave,

    Have you considered measuring the base expansion from fired factory ammo and using that as a baseline for your load development?

    Using the same brass, same rifle, I have found this to be a useful tool. You have to have a good mic and be careful measuring and take good notes to be safe.

    There is more to it, but if you are interested myself or someone else can give more info on procedures.
    Yes it's another tool, an indicator to study. It is generally reffered to as the Ken Waters technique. He used it and believed in it. It has come under some fire lately from the "more educated" writers and several factors pointed out among them brass hardness and increasing hardness with each firing. But Waters was an engineer capable of analyzing all factors well, I'm sure he knew what he was doing. It will take a good mike and you must measure to one ten thousnadth of an inch and use it with the many other indicators.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  5. #5
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default

    Great stuff, Thanks!

    I am a bit fuzzy on using my Crony to set my load. Normally I use it to see where a particular load has me instead of the inverse. can you 'spain' that one again? What velocity are you lookin for in 270G or 235G ?

    I have about 25 years of slow steady experience and hammered a few primers very flat in my very early years. Too old to want to screw up now.

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Southwest Alaska
    Posts
    2,145

    Default

    Can't completely trust manuals. Need to use the Chrony with the manual. Or even better, just buy pressure testing equipment and you won't have to guess.

    http://www.shootingsoftware.com/products.htm
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...

  7. #7
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    4,431

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveintheburbs View Post
    Great stuff, Thanks!

    I am a bit fuzzy on using my Crony to set my load. Normally I use it to see where a particular load has me instead of the inverse. can you 'spain' that one again? What velocity are you lookin for in 270G or 235G ?

    I have about 25 years of slow steady experience and hammered a few primers very flat in my very early years. Too old to want to screw up now.

    Easy enough First we must ask what are we looking for. That comes from the A. Factory loads, B. previous experience with the caliber, C. ballistics of a referenced or similar caliber.

    The 375 Ruger is advertised to equal the H&H with a 24" barrel in the Ruger's shorter 20" barrel, bullet for bullet. It will do that easily.

    If your barrel is 23" it will add 100 fps to the H&H ballistics. As advertised.

    Thes modest increase in ballistics is supported scientifically by the added capacity of the Ruger case so we aren't out on a limb here. This of course requires the use of the same powders as one might use for the H&H and the same bullets.

    I loaded the 270s to 2850 fps in the 23" Ruger that is a well accepted H&H ballistics, plus 100 fps. I don't recall what I did with the 235 Speers but can look tomorrow.

    Now it is true that if we errantly run off and just load any powder in the 375 Ruger and try to get 2850 fps with a 270 grain bullet, this could cause problems but you'd have to be a little looney to just indiscriminately grab a jug of powder and start stuffing, this does require some common sense and some experiance, I'm sure you have both.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  8. #8
    Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Palmer,Alaska
    Posts
    1,737

    Default

    While I'm in total agreement about 4350 as being the best for the .375 H&H. (I use no other). And after reading the above posts, I had a thought about this bigger case.

    I was wondering if RL-22/MRP might work out a little better? Now this was just a thought and I have no idea if this would be the case, just curious?

    As to using case head expansion, I read the arguments against it. After years of using this method, I found the arguments made a lot of sense and scared me enough to re-evaluate my process. The problem I kept running into with the against argument was the fact that, it works.

    The main problem I see with measuring case expansion is this. You had better develop a feel for the use of a measuring tool before you rely on it. You had better learn good record keeping techniques. You can not just blaze away.

    Just my two cents.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default

    A few more questions:
    Why H4350 vice IMR4350? Slightly different burn rate, but is there anythiing else?

    I have used a lot of reloader 15 in the H&H myself. It (along with IMR4350) was what I used for my initial 375 Ruger loads, just way to little of it it would seem. Reloader 19 intriges me but I have heard Reloader 22 is highly temp sensitive, comments?

    On using my crony to construct loads. I have not had a lot of luck with matching load velocites shot in a test barrel in my own rifles at the loads listed. That is what I meant by using my crony to check my loads instead ovf vice versa. I work up to either my best accuracy, book max or individual rifle max and see where I am. If I understand this correctly I can take factory ballistics and use that as the goal while working up to safe maximum loads? Still fuzzy on this one, sorry.

    Thanks for all the imputs so far. Keep em coming.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Southwest Alaska
    Posts
    2,145

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveintheburbs View Post
    A few more questions:
    On using my crony to construct loads. I have not had a lot of luck with matching load velocites shot in a test barrel in my own rifles at the loads listed. That is what I meant by using my crony to check my loads instead ovf vice versa. I work up to either my best accuracy, book max or individual rifle max and see where I am. If I understand this correctly I can take factory ballistics and use that as the goal while working up to safe maximum loads? Still fuzzy on this one, sorry.
    Thanks for all the imputs so far. Keep em coming.
    Everyone always wants max loads.

    Best accuracy is the smartest plan. If you go over to www.accuratereloading.com and look at the reloading pages, you will see some really high-pressure loads. Compare the quantity of powder to a reloading manual. The important point will be to look at the group sizes. You will notice that at low to moderate loadings (almost always), the groups are the tightest. Once the pressure climbs, the groups open up.

    My .500 A-Square has a listed max load of 118 grains RL-15 at 2,467 fps with 57,500 psi. My velocity adjusted for my barrel length is 2,402 fps.

    I loaded 113 grains to begin and found I was already at 2,385 fps. 113.5 gave me 2410fps. What do you think would have happened had I loaded 118 grains?

    This is an isolated case, but I use it to illustrate the necessity of using a chrony, and accepting that just because the book says "more", does not mean I can throw prudent caution and common sense out the window. This goes for both quantity of powder and velocity.
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...

  11. #11
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default

    Noted, seen that myself. Doesn't really answer my questions though.

  12. #12
    Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Palmer,Alaska
    Posts
    1,737

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveintheburbs View Post
    A few more questions:
    Why H4350 vice IMR4350? Slightly different burn rate, but is there anythiing else?

    I have used a lot of reloader 15 in the H&H myself. It (along with IMR4350) was what I used for my initial 375 Ruger loads, just way to little of it it would seem. Reloader 19 intriges me but I have heard Reloader 22 is highly temp sensitive, comments?

    On using my crony to construct loads. I have not had a lot of luck with matching load velocites shot in a test barrel in my own rifles at the loads listed. That is what I meant by using my crony to check my loads instead ovf vice versa. I work up to either my best accuracy, book max or individual rifle max and see where I am. If I understand this correctly I can take factory ballistics and use that as the goal while working up to safe maximum loads? Still fuzzy on this one, sorry.

    Thanks for all the imputs so far. Keep em coming.
    IMR and Hodgdons 4831 both had a meaning at one time. The meaning of the IMR was point in fact it came from the same lot, meaning that each canister is from the same lot. Hodgdons bought huge lots of powder and mixed the lots. That meant that with-in each can you had a mixture of lots. Well that's history now gone are the days of mixing lots of powder at Hodgdons. What you get now in 1 pound can or 8 pound keg is from the same lot. At one time IMR was a brand name of I.e. DuPont. They sold out and moved to Canada. Agiain sold out and as far as I know the IMR brand is owned by Hodgdon.

    Where the trouble comes in, people for the most part think as long as it says 4831 it is going to act just the same. WRONG, there is differences between lots, they have faster and slower burn rates with-in the same number. What does this mean to today's shooter/reloader, vary little. At one time it meant a great deal to competitive shooters who strives for accuracy. It was commonly said the H-4831 could have as much as a grain difference in a can. That's why many competitive shooters would use only IMR.

    Using Accurate 4350, Hodgdon 4350, IMR 4350 today I don't see the big differences that I used to see. (This of course is in a .375 H&H)

    Temperature sensitive? Lets think about this for a moment. When do most people go to the range to work up loads? At 20 to 30 degrees? Heck no there out in warmer weather. When do they go to sight-in for the fall hunt? By looking at the pact crowds at the ranges around the country, just before they take off to hunt (Not a bad thing). You worked up a load in the 60-70 + and shoot it in the 20 to 30's, does that mean the powder is temperature sensitive? I sure hope so, or we are breaking some natural laws.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

  13. #13
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default

    Thanks Big Al,

    So why do you and Murphy prefer the Hodgdon (except it sounds like they own both) variety these days. I’m happy to bow to experience, but curious why.

    Still interested in Reloader 19 in the 375 Ruger.

    As far as rumors of temperature sensitivity. I routinely work up loads in late winter that I shoot in fall or work them up in summer and shoot in winter. Easily 60+ degrees of temperature difference. I have never worried about it so far but read some concerns about Reloader 22.

    Still scratching my head over the crony thing.

  14. #14
    Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Palmer,Alaska
    Posts
    1,737

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveintheburbs View Post
    Thanks Big Al,

    So why do you and Murphy prefer the Hodgdon (except it sounds like they own both) variety these days. I’m happy to bow to experience, but curious why.

    OLD Habits die hard? I really don't care which of the several iterations I buy, I only buy in case of kegs anyway, no lot change to worry about.

    Still interested in Reloader 19 in the 375 Ruger.

    As far as rumors of temperature sensitivity. I routinely work up loads in late winter that I shoot in fall or work them up in summer and shoot in winter. Easily 60+ degrees of temperature difference. I have never worried about it so far but read some concerns about Reloader 22.

    Still scratching my head over the crony thing.
    Idon't know, I use a crony so seldom, I frequently forget to pack the thing.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •