The importance of load development

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David LaPell

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Sep 14, 2008
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Working on my .22 Hornet, I thought I would show how load development is important. Here are three loads, all using the Nosler 40 grain Ballistic Tip, 2400 powder, and CCI small pistol primers. These three loads show the subtle differences in the small amounts of powder. Working on a few more tweaks before I decide on "the" load.
Picture986.jpg
 

SBH4628

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Oct 28, 2009
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Indiana
Looks good David :D Was you using 2400 Alliant or Hercules?,,,I have both. Also 1st year 77/22 Hornet (Safe queen) :D Ready ta get it back out.Did you let the barrel cool down after each string? Thank you for the pics.Also forgot to add I also cast bullets for this caliber,,Lyman#225415
 

revhigh

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Forgive me David, but I don't see much difference in the group sizes. What am I missing ? I'd call them almost identical, other than the righthand one having most of the holes closer together, which may or may not be due to the load. How would the flyer be explained ?

I wouldn't be sure you can attribute those groups to the tenth of a grain change in 'loadings'.

Can you please enlighten me ??

Thanks

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Bucks Owin

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How much glass is on that rifle? I'd be a little disappointed in those groups at 100 yds if I had enough scope on it to be sure it was the rifle and not my shooting. Are you shooting off bags and bench?...Not trying to rain on the parade but..... :? Honestly, I can't read anything from those targets and frankly, I'd be wondering what's wrong with the combination.....JMHO
 

David LaPell

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Right now this gun has a free floated barrel. Part of the problem too might be because it was a very windy day. The thing with the .22 Hornet is that they are notorious for being finicky. I have alot more experimenting to do, but if you look at the target on the left, and then on the right there is an obvious shrinking of the groups. There was no difference between the placement of the gun, and the adjustment of the scope between shots. I am hoping to try and mess with other granulations right now. What I was pointing out is how much even a tenth of a grain can make a difference.
 

BearHawk 357

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Feb 18, 2010
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Ohio
David,

I tried to estimate the average size of these three groups. Let's say, for the sake of discussion, that these were 1.5" groups at 25 yeards. These groups would open up to about 6" at 100 yards. You mentioned that you still had a little tweaking to do until you found the "right" load. Yikes.

I thought that the 22 Horntet was the type of round that is commonly shot into 1" groups at 100 yards. Most guys I know would send a varmint rifle back to the factory, for repair, if it printed a 6" 100-yard group. I'm not trying to beat you up here, man. I'm just a little bit confused.

I feel that these three groups are nearly 100% the same (both in group size and in pattern location). Here are my thoughts about the target on the right: I feel that there are two flyers on the target on the right. They would be the two rounds, in the black, that are furthest to the right. This is what is giving that target the appearance of a nice group. I think this due to the fact that the round that is not in the black, on the right target, is in the same exact spot as all of the rounds in the other two targets. You can't hardly view a shot as a flyer if it landed exactly in the same place as the previous 10 shots that were fired. It is more likely that your flyers were in the black (like I think happened).

Like others, I really didn't want to rain on your parade here. However, I just had to say something about this. Staying quiet, about this one, was driving me nuts. These are not the worst groups I have ever seen. But the title of your thread doesn't match with, in my opinion, what actually happened, in regards to these targets. Keep working on those loads, buddy.
 

Dave King

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May 24, 2009
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Maryland, USA
25 yards with a rifle scope... Is this scope adjustable for parallax (AO - adjustable objective)?

If your scope isn't an AO type you may be fighting eye placement/position and your load change could be having zero effect.
 

mattsbox99

Hunter
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Jan 12, 2009
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Montana 'Merica
I can save you a lot of load development and wasted time... fill the case up with Lil Gun and stick a 30-45 grain bullet on top with a small pistol primer (non magnum) or Rem 6 1/2 SR. You can't fit enough Lil gun in the case to go over pressure but 13 or so grains should be enough.
 

Bucks Owin

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51st state of Jefferson
Dave King":n85n9wt7 said:
25 yards with a rifle scope... Is this scope adjustable for parallax (AO - adjustable objective)?

If your scope isn't an AO type you may be fighting eye placement/position and your load change could be having zero effect.
That's a very good point, wish I'd thought of it!..... BTW David, free floating works wonders with some rifles and others don't like it...(P-64 M70's being a good example) I'd make sure the scope mounts are tight and parallax adjusted if possible. Then shoot a few groups at 100 yds with factory ammo and check back with your results....IMO, a Hornet that can't manage (or better) the groups you've shown, except at 100 yds is hurting somewhere....25 yds is too close for anything except for preliminary sighting in. Also, there'll be very little effect from wind and tweaks in powder charge will be meaningless at such close range. Let's get this fine old caliber shooting "up to snuff" my friend, a tuned up Hornet is a joy to shoot! :wink:
 

revhigh

Hawkeye
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BearHawk 357":3amuqxv6 said:
It is more likely that your flyers were in the black (like I think happened).

Yeah ... I see what you mean ... if the scope wasn't adjusted between targets I'd agree with your assessment.

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