What's wrong? - UPDATED

Help Support Ruger Forum:

Jayhawkhuntclub

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 28, 2007
Messages
1,240
Location
Kansas
(I also posted this on the revolvers forum, but I'm looking for all the good advice I can get.)

My 45 Hunter w/scope shot an average of 1" at 20 yards with the load I had today. I move out to 50 yards and it shot an average of 5" groups. I don't consider 1" at 20 yards anything spectacular, but it's not bad either. So how are my groups so bad a 50? The crosshairs were dead center: I don't think it was the shooter. It's not the scope either. So what makes a bullet accurate at 20 and all over the place at 50? Help!

BTW, the load was 255 gr Keith (Missouri Bullets), WLP, 9.0 gr Unique, Starline cases. Also, I shot these from a solid rest and sandbags.
 

DGW1949

Hunter
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
3,963
Location
Dixie
Quite a difference in 5 MOA and 10 MOA.
First thing I'd suspect would be a muzzel and/or crown problem.
I'd check the bases on them bullets too. Cull out the worst ones, sort the rest by size and weight...then try it again.

Hope this helps.

DGW
 

Bucks Owin

Hunter
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
3,198
Location
51st state of Jefferson
That Lipsey Hunter is a nice sixgun, but as a matter of course I'd check throat dimensions in anything .45 Colt. If they are undersize like a lot of .45 Bisleys appear to be, I'd fix that first. That said, and I'll draw some flak here I'm sure, but a fellow who's knowledge of bullet design I respect greatly feels the "Keith SWC" bullet is somewhat outdated and there are more accurate designs out there....FWIW, Dennis
 

Jayhawkhuntclub

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 28, 2007
Messages
1,240
Location
Kansas
Maybe not the best method for measuring, but I took some 0.451" bullets and dropped them down each cleaned chamber. None fell through. I could force them through with a little effort. I tried this with multiple bullets multi ple times. All of the bullets measure .451" on the micrometer. Is this enough to assume that the camber mouths are too tight? If so what do you think the odds are that reaming them would fix my problem?
 

Jayhawkhuntclub

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 28, 2007
Messages
1,240
Location
Kansas
pistoleer44":3pzs8dal said:
Find some 45 cal cast bullets that size at .452 or even .454. I bet you see some improvment.

My cast bullets are 0.452. My point is my cylinder throats are already too tight. I don't see 0.454 helping.
 

Jayhawkhuntclub

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 28, 2007
Messages
1,240
Location
Kansas
Well I had the cylinders reemed by CAS. I took it out today and I shot two groups with lead (one was 8.0 gr Unique the other was 9.5 gr Unique). Both groups were 5+ inches.

But since the last time I shot it I also bought some 250 gr Hornady XTPs. I had these loaded up with H 110 (24.5, 25.0 and 25.5) I shot two groups of each and averaged just under 2.25" at 50 yards. I'm not sure if I should expect better at 50 yds or not. But overall I was pretty happy with the XTPs.

I am now pondering if I should recut the forcing cone to 11 degrees to try and improve my lead bullet accuracy. If I do so, what are the odds that it hurts my accuracy with XTPs?
 

Bucks Owin

Hunter
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
3,198
Location
51st state of Jefferson
2.25 at 50 yds with XTP's is pretty good IMO! I'd try a different cast bullet as the one's you have should shoot better than they have. Some cast bullet makers make cast bullets extra hard to resist shipping damage with little thought to accuracy. I'm not saying that's the case here, but it can't hurt to try a different bullet to eliminate the possibility that the bullet itself is the culprit. Cast bullets are not all created equal! :shock: ...JMO, Dennis
 

DGW1949

Hunter
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
3,963
Location
Dixie
With the weight bullets you are using, a properly cut 11 degree FC can't hurt.....might even help...but I'm still thinking bullet. Sort them lead bullets by size and weight and then pick the ones with the flatest base (think sprue-marks here)...try it again. If that don't help, I'd give some serious thought to coating them with Alox. Reason is, most all commercialy-cast bullets are too hard for the pressures you're getting from 8-9 Grns Unique....and they got the wrong lube for what you are doing with them. I've often found that coating the whole thing (old lube 'n all) with Alox can make a measurable difference in accuracy.

Far as your question about the effects of re-cutting the FC on a jacketed bullet....dunno...I don't shoot 'em, so I can't say.

DGW
 

Rick Courtright

Hawkeye
Joined
Mar 10, 2002
Messages
7,897
Location
Redlands CA USA
Jayhawkhuntclub":pslcunr9 said:
I shot two groups of each and averaged just under 2.25" at 50 yards. I'm not sure if I should expect better at 50 yds or not. But overall I was pretty happy with the XTPs.

I am now pondering if I should recut the forcing cone to 11 degrees to try and improve my lead bullet accuracy. If I do so, what are the odds that it hurts my accuracy with XTPs?

Hi,

Random thoughts:

XTPs have outperformed MY cast bullets in the apps where I've been able to try 'em side by side.

In apps where I haven't tried XTPs, there's been a lot of magic along w/ the science when working up cast bullet loads. A slight change in the load CAN make a big difference w/ cast bullets. In MY gun, of course!

As for the forcing cone cut, remember whenever you're testing that you only want to change ONE variable at a time. You've had CAS cut the throats, so stop right there as your first "gun variable", and work on changing things one at a time w/ your "load variables."

You'll find something you like, or not. If not, THEN think about the forcing cone cut. It's just anecdotal, but I've heard and read that more often than not, there hasn't been the huge increase in accuracy the shooter expected when the f/c is cut. Leading can decrease significantly, though.

You won't know until you try it, and trying it's a one way trip: you can't put metal back on once it's been cut off...

Personally, I'd be happy w/ ANY load I could hold near 2" at 50 yds from a revolver, and figure "It ain't broke..." but that's just me!

Rick C
 

Bucks Owin

Hunter
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
3,198
Location
51st state of Jefferson
Dittos on the Lee Liquid Alox, I coat Hornady cowboy bullets with it as a matter of course, but it can't make a "bad" bullet shoot good. It can help keep it from leading if there's a problem in that regard. Hitting the base a little harder with a powder increase/change "could" help too. But a 5" group is the bullet's fault I think we can all agree. Try a cast bullet of known accuracy from a friend perhaps? I'm thinking 452190. Hold off on the FC mod for now as Rick said. There are plenty of accurate .45 BH's out there with Ruger's untouched FC....JMO, Dennis
 

ChuckS1

Bearcat
Joined
Jan 21, 2007
Messages
88
Location
Stafford, VA, USA
FWIT, a 2" group at 50 yards is pretty good for a pistol cartridge. My M1911A1 bullseye pistol groups between 1.5-2.0 inches at 50 yards from a Ransom rest and that's on a good day when everything is perfect. When I shoot off hand, I'm damned lucky to hold the 8 ring. So, I'd say you're doing pretty good with XTPs.

As far as the cast bullets go, if you want good groups, two things come to mind. first, look at the bases. Not so much how flat they are, but make sure the edges are nice and sharp. any defect there will show up at 50 yards. Second, as others have said, is to weigh them. For my 50 yard loads, I use my home cast H&G 68 200 grain SWC. These have a flat (not beveled) base, and I only load those that are +/- 2 grains of the 200 grain weight. I also weigh each powder charge, instead of using a powder measure. If you want to get really anal, weigh the brass as well.
 
Joined
Aug 16, 2005
Messages
9,358
Location
Milo Maine
Have you sluged your barrel to check for a tight spot or a bulge. That would be the next step for me. Or have a look at the crown. Not an expert here but little things can make a big difference. ps
 

BearStopper

Blackhawk
Joined
May 16, 2008
Messages
787
Location
Oregon
It is interesting to me that some Ruger handguns can shoot so well, while others are difficult to work with. I have an OM Super that shot 2 1/2" groups at 50 yards with the first cast bullet load I threw at it. Also with the same load my Redhawk shoots just as well. I had two 4 5/8" OM .357's that wouldn't shoot well with any loads I put through them. Now I didn't get around to trying but about 3 or four loads before they got sold/traded but it was amazing how bad they shot. I now have an OM 6 1/2" convertable .357/9mm and I am going to be more patient to find the best loads for both cylinders on this one. I just don't understand why Ruger would continue to produce the 45 Colt with bad tolerances?????
 
Top