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 Post subject: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 2:12 pm 
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I've been doing metallic reloading for 25 years, but I'm a newbie to shotshell reloading. I recently tested a batch of my reloads and found that they were clocking significantly hotter than expected from the reload data that I used.

Here is the data I was following using once fired Remington Premier Nitro 27 hulls with 1 oz. of 7.5 magnum lead shot:

Image

I was dropping 19.2 gr. of Clays powder, so I expected something around 1250-1270 fps for my reloads. I weighed every 5th drop. I was getting pretty consistent drops of +- .2 gr.

My chronograph was showing an average speed of 1373 fps for my reloads. I used some Fiocchi 1250 fps factory loads for a control, and my chronograph was clocking them at an average of 1262 fps, so my chronograph may be around 10-12 fps high, but I still don't understand why I'm almost 100 fps higher than expected with this load.

Maybe this is a normal variation for reloading shotshells? Thoughts.




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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 2:41 pm 
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Do your reloads have significantly more recoil than the Fiocchi's? If not something else is going on.

What choke were you using?....You want to use cylinder with a skyscreen chronograph. The more choke you use the higher the velocities. It varies with the load but figure for every 0.010" of choke about 10 - 15 FPS. Not gospel just about what happens....but not every time.

How far from the start screen are you? Should be 2' to 3' (I know that isn't what the instructions say).

Shotshells are tough to chronograph on sunny days. Cloudy days are best and you must use the sunshades even on cloudy days.

I realize that you probably shot both loads on the same day, but shotshells are finicky with skyscreen chronographs. That doesn't mean you can't use a skyscreen chrono, just that they are finicky.

What was the crimp depth on the shotshells you reloaded? 0.055" to 0.060" is what you should use. Thickness of a dime is a good comparison. Crimp depth is important and will affect velocities more than you might think.

If you reloaded the shells correctly, you can reasonably expect to be within +/- 50 FPS.

Just remember the only consistent thing about shotshell ballisitics is their inconsistencies. Chronographing shotshells is not as easy as a single projectile cartridge. You learn a lot more about chrongraphs when you use them for shotshells.

What I am telling you is don't get real wrapped around the axle about this.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:26 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 12, 2012 5:11 pm
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dogchaser37 wrote:
Do your reloads have significantly more recoil than the Fiocchi's? If not something else is going on.

What choke were you using?....You want to use cylinder with a skyscreen chronograph. The more choke you use the higher the velocities. It varies with the load but figure for every 0.010" of choke about 10 - 15 FPS. Not gospel just about what happens....but not every time.

How far from the start screen are you? Should be 2' to 3' (I know that isn't what the instructions say).

Shotshells are tough to chronograph on sunny days. Cloudy days are best and you must use the sunshades even on cloudy days.

I realize that you probably shot both loads on the same day, but shotshells are finicky with skyscreen chronographs. That doesn't mean you can't use a skyscreen chrono, just that they are finicky.

What was the crimp depth on the shotshells you reloaded? 0.055" to 0.060" is what you should use. Thickness of a dime is a good comparison. Crimp depth is important and will affect velocities more than you might think.

If you reloaded the shells correctly, you can reasonably expect to be within +/- 50 FPS.

Just remember the only consistent thing about shotshell ballisitics is their inconsistencies. Chronographing shotshells is not as easy as a single projectile cartridge. You learn a lot more about chrongraphs when you use them for shotshells.

What I am telling you is don't get real wrapped around the axle about this.


Thanks for the help.

I didn't really notice much recoil difference, but I was using a limbsaver.

I was about 5 feet from the chronograph for measurements, which is what the instructions said for shotguns. I was not using the shades, as it was an overcast day. I was getting an occasional error on the chronograph, so I suspect that it was having problems reading the passing load.

I was alternating between an improved cylinder and light modified choke, so this may have increased my numbers some. Didn't know that I should have been using cylinder.

My crimp depth looks very close to the factory shells. Maybe just a touch less on some.

Really appreciate the help! I can see that some things I did using the chronograph may have elevated the numbers.

My biggest concern is not creating excessive pressures.

I'm guessing that as long as I follow the manufacture's load data, I will be safe regardless of what numbers I'm seeing on the chronograph.

Really appreciate the help. Very informative! Shotshell reloading is definitely a different beasty.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:37 pm 
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Have you checked the weight of your shot charge? If using a MEC bar, they frequently drop light charges that could result in higher velocity

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 3:52 pm 
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casonet wrote:
Have you checked the weight of your shot charge? If using a MEC bar, they frequently drop light charges that could result in higher velocity


Yea, I'm using a MEC 1 oz. bar. I didn't think about checking the shot charge. I'm going to run a couple of loads and check it.

Thanks!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 4:05 pm 
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Most MEC bars drop light charges, and it will vary by the shot size and the amount of hardening alloys in the lead.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:36 pm 
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In my Mec 9000, the 1 oz bar typically drops about 15 - 25 grains less than 1 oz. I have always attributed that to whatever was added to the lead to increase the hardness (usually antimony but sometimes other metals). I have never worried about it since I get roughly the same number of pellets in the load (assuming reasonably standard shot size). It could result in higher velocity but I don't think as much as you observed.

There are other threads going both here and elsewhere that question whether the load data that was generated for Clays that was manufactured in Australia produces the same results as the Clays that is now produced in Canada. I can't speak direclty to that because I don't use Clays.

My suggestion is to tune your load to the velocity you want (for me it's about 1225 fps) and as long as the load is within the range specified by the supplier, go for it.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:44 pm 
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My sport load is Nitro hulls, 16.4 grains of Clays (#29 MEC bushing) one ounce of magnum #8 with a CB1110-12 wad. Consistently ~1225fps over the chronograph. MEC 600Jr press.
Are you double-checking your powder load on a scale occasionally? Adjust powder bushngs as necessary to get the fps as desired. Maybe final crimp is excessive? I imagine that may also change the characteristics of the ballistics.
Quote:
I'm guessing that as long as I follow the manufacture's load data, I will be safe regardless of what numbers I'm seeing on the chronograph.

Not necessarily.

tp

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Last edited by T-Pee on Tue Sep 01, 2020 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 7:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 12, 2012 5:11 pm
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T-Pee wrote:
My sport load is Nitro hulls, 16.4 grains of Clays (#29 MEC bushing) one ounce of magnum #8 with a CB1110-12 wad. Consistently ~1225fps over the chronograph. MEC 600Jr press.
Are you double-checking your powder load on a scale occasionally? Adjust powder bushngs as necessary to get the fps as desired. Maybe final crimp is excessive? I imagine that may also change the characteristics of the ballistics.
Quote:
I'm guessing that as long as I follow the manufacture's load data, I will be safe regardless of what numbers I'm seeing on the chronograph.

Not necessarily.

tp


Interesting you are getting 1225 fps from that load when compared to the load data, which shows a result of 100 fps less. I guess hotter primer could make some difference?:
Image

No wonder I was getting 1373 fps from 19.2 gn.


How could you get in trouble following a manufacturer's published recipe? I'm thinking they will be covering their rear-ends with published loads. I can understand problems if you make substitutions.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 8:09 am 
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You can't get in trouble following the manufacturers data.

The very first clue that something is wrong with your velocities is the recoil. That much difference in velocity will change the recoil and it will be very obvious, regardless of recoil devices.

If I had this issue, I would first solve the problem of the chronograph not recording velocities. There maybe nothing wrong with the loads this may all be a chronograph problem and a chrono that is missing loads is not recording correct velocities. Also skyscreen chronographs are very good at telling you how consistent your loads are (once you solve the missing shots problem) they may or may not be good at giving you accurate velocities. As I stated +/- 50 FPS is about as good as it gets.

I would also be sure that the components that I was using match the data. Clone wads cannot be trusted to match the ballistics of the OEM wads. Clones are a safe substitution, that does not mean that the velocities or pressures will match. Close enough is not close enough when you are trying to match velocities. Measure the crimp depth be sure it is correct. Under weight shot drops have an effect on velocities. You MUST match the data exactly if you expect to be close.

When you use the 'close enough' method you will get accumulated errors.

Remember that the data was shot under controlled conditions of a lab, with different lot numbers of components, by a tech (not you), on a different reloader, using a completely different type of chronograph and a completely different type of barrel. Most folks don't think that these are valid differences...OK....but they are the same people that can't match the data.

The funniest part about this Clays deal....Clays was originally sold as a 'soft' recoiling powder and we couldn't figure out why until we shot some of the loads over the chronograph...They were all slower than what was printed in the data. Not by much, about 25 FPS.

Now folks are saying that the velocities are high. :lol: :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 10:18 am 
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dogchaser37 wrote:
You can't get in trouble following the manufacturers data.

The very first clue that something is wrong with your velocities is the recoil. That much difference in velocity will change the recoil and it will be very obvious, regardless of recoil devices.

If I had this issue, I would first solve the problem of the chronograph not recording velocities. There maybe nothing wrong with the loads this may all be a chronograph problem and a chrono that is missing loads is not recording correct velocities. Also skyscreen chronographs are very good at telling you how consistent your loads are (once you solve the missing shots problem) they may or may not be good at giving you accurate velocities. As I stated +/- 50 FPS is about as good as it gets.

I would also be sure that the components that I was using match the data. Clone wads cannot be trusted to match the ballistics of the OEM wads. Clones are a safe substitution, that does not mean that the velocities or pressures will match. Close enough is not close enough when you are trying to match velocities. Measure the crimp depth be sure it is correct. Under weight shot drops have an effect on velocities. You MUST match the data exactly if you expect to be close.

When you use the 'close enough' method you will get accumulated errors.

Remember that the data was shot under controlled conditions of a lab, with different lot numbers of components, by a tech (not you), on a different reloader, using a completely different type of chronograph and a completely different type of barrel. Most folks don't think that these are valid differences...OK....but they are the same people that can't match the data.

The funniest part about this Clays deal....Clays was originally sold as a 'soft' recoiling powder and we couldn't figure out why until we shot some of the loads over the chronograph...They were all slower than what was printed in the data. Not by much, about 25 FPS.

Now folks are saying that the velocities are high. :lol: :lol:


I followed the load data exactly for materials including OEM wads, primers, etc.. I did run some loads last night and found that I'm dropping a little less than 1 oz. of shot, which would definitely increase the speeds. My crimps look pretty good, very close to factory depth or just slightly less.

I can't rule out a problem with my cheap chronograph, which was also reading the Fiocchi factory loads on the high side. I know from above posts that I was too far from the chronograph, I was not using the sun shades, and I had too much choke for a proper test. I got several errors during the testing, so I think the machine was having problems reading the shot string. I have a friend who has a Magnetospeed chronograph and I may see if he will let me try it, but not sure it will work on a shotgun.

I ran across this series of articles on chronographing shotgun loads. Interesting reading: http://www.claytargettesting.com/study2 ... udy2a.html
Looks like there are a lot of variables that can affect the readings.

Appreciate the help!


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 10:37 am 
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Those articles by Neil Winston are excellent.

Yes there are a lot of things that can affect the readings.

Having a load with a known velocity (reference) allows you to correct a chronographs readings. But that can get expensive as you have to send off reloads to a lab and then you have to have a supply of components and be able to duplicate that load over and over. Not a real big deal but more than most folks want to go through.

One chronograph that I have had good luck with is the Competition Electronics ProChrono. $99.00 pretty much everywhere.

I set my muzzle 3' to the center of the two skyscreens, use the sunshades and only on cloudy days or under a canopy of some sort. I have good luck at my gun club under the roof on the rifle range where the shooting benches are. Every now and again you will lose a shot but it shouldn't happen very often. You should be able to consistently shoot 10 round strings with no problems.

Stray light or light that flashes (sun through the trees when it is breezy) that is what creates the biggest problem with skyscreen chronographs. That is why a nice calm overcast day is best, unless you have a controlled environment such as a lab.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:23 pm 
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Ernest T wrote:


My chronograph was showing an average speed of 1373 fps for my reloads. I used some Fiocchi 1250 fps factory loads for a control, and my chronograph was clocking them at an average of 1262 fps, so my chronograph may be around 10-12 fps high, but I still don't understand why I'm almost 100 fps higher than expected with this load.
I would not trust that the speed printed on the box those Fiocchis came in matches the actual speed produced by the shells in the box. It's a mistake to try and use factory loads as a "reference" because the standard they use allows for wide variation, as much as +/- 90 fps. That box of Fiocchis could have shells going as fast as 1340 or as slow as 1160 and still with the 1250 advertised speed.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:52 pm 
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+1 on the Pro Chrono. I have one and have been very satisfied wit the results. It is a good idea to change the battery before the chrono says it needs it. I have noticed that as the battery ages the readings tend to become more erratic.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 6:08 am 
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Variances between shotguns can cause that much or more variance as well. Over/Back bored barrels will run different velocities and pressures vs shotguns that are not. Barrel length will have minimal, but noticeable impact, crimp depth, shot weight variances, etc.

Shotshell reloading is not rifle reloading. Follow the published data and you will be fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 7:13 am 
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T-Pee wrote:
My sport load is Nitro hulls, 16.4 grains of Clays (#29 MEC bushing) one ounce of magnum #8 with a CB1110-12 wad. Consistently ~1225fps over the chronograph. MEC 600Jr press.
Are you double-checking your powder load on a scale occasionally? Adjust powder bushngs as necessary to get the fps as desired. Maybe final crimp is excessive? I imagine that may also change the characteristics of the ballistics.
Quote:
I'm guessing that as long as I follow the manufacture's load data, I will be safe regardless of what numbers I'm seeing on the chronograph.

Not necessarily.

tp

I’m a little confused, I’ve extensively shot a 1 oz load with 16-17 grains of Clays. My chronograph shows approximately 1100 fps.


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 9:07 am 
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This thread confirms my distrust of hobby-level (edit) shotgun chronographing.


Last edited by J.Fred_Muggs on Sun Aug 30, 2020 3:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:36 pm 
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J.Fred_Muggs,

It isn't the chronographs.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 3:46 pm 
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The precision of your Chronograph will be just as accurate as your 10 powder drops !
What difference does it make when the ammo factories have 90 fps +or- and the very
little difference in forward allowance between , 1150 and 1250 fps ? you think ?


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 Post subject: Re: Hotter Than Expected Reloads?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2020 4:54 pm 
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Ravenanme,

You might want to take a good look at the SAAMI Standards, nowhere does it say that ammunition should vary +/-90 FPS.

That is a reference to what the average velocity of the box of ammunition can be from the stated dram equivalent. In other words if the box says 12 gauge, 3 Dram 1 1/8 oz. the actual average velocity of the ammunition in that box can vary +/- 90 FPS from 1200 FPS. It does not mean that individual shells can vary in velocity from 1100 FPS to 1290 FPS.

Typical variation in a 10 shot string for premium target ammo is a Standard Deviation of 14 FPS or less with an Extreme Spread of 35 FPS or less.

If you are diligent and use components that work well together you can achieve those numbers with reloads, it isn't all that difficult.

I had a load tested by Tom Armbrust that had an SD of 7 FPS and an Extreme Spread of 14 FPS.

+/- 90 FPS is off the charts and will cause you to miss.



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