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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have recently acquired a Magneto Speed Sporter and have been using it quite extensively. All for numbers for reloading of course. Over the past month I have shot many different loadings with different powders and bullets and have also repeated many to try and verify numbers..

Here is my dilemma, I am getting random shots that are just way out of the ordinary with absolutely no rhyme or reason that I can pinpoint...

I will normally load 12 each of the loads I want to test and then also load 3 separate weight groups. So like this; 12 ea of say 23.0, 12 each of 23.2 and 12each of 23.4.. I will then shoot them round robin is three shot groups at a single target with separate bulls for each one.

Shoot 3, move to the next,and shoot 3 and then move to the next and shoot 3.. After those I will repeat the process for a total of 4 rounds of 3.. All the while recording the shot speeds in order.

What I am finding is that in almost every three shot group there will be one shot that is extra ordinarily higher or lower than the other two. and there is no pattern that I can find. It can be the first shot, last shot or the second shot. Many times the shots will be within 10/15 fps or they at times match, but there is almost always one that is way out, sometimes by as much as 100fps!

My reloading practices for this have been meticulous. All brass the same headstamp,straight with no dents or deformed mouths. All sized and checked at the same batch, all trimmed at the same time. Every powder charge is check weighed on a beam scale and trickled up.. I have now just loaded some tonight and this time I tried it with annealed brass but of course I have not shoot this yet. I have also tried loading these loads to different length with no improvement.

Anyways I cannot think of what to try next. I have even tried more time between shots to see if this was a heat issue and it doesn't appear to be that either.

Not looking for perfection just to try and lower this Extreme Spread. If I could get consistently below 50 I would be extremely happy.
 

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Does it do the same thing with factory ammo? If so, I'd look to the gun for an answer. What is it?
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The gun is a Savage Model 10 in 223 with a 22" barrel with 1:9
I haven't shot Factory in it with the chrono but plan on it during the next trip.
Have found a few loads that shoot great groups @ 200yds but the numbers are not so great. While I have also found some loads with single digit SD that didn't group well.
 
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Are you collecting numbers or bullet holes? :)
I've shot a few groups through the chrony and been amazed at how wrong the machine was. The bullets are right. ;) Sometimes the machine tells you why the bullet is wrong, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Actually I guess you could say a bit of both. Shooting groups to find the smallest and the chrono to see how consistent these loads are. Finding the two do not always correlate. At least at 200yds!
 

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Too much data is confusing to me so I don't collect it, but I've noticed the more 'balanced' a cartridge the closer that correlation. It's much easier to get small SDs from low pressure cartridges and loads than the big flash rifles. Comparing 25-06 and 257 Roberts is a good exercise to show that, but when it's 25-06 and 257AI, they become the same amount of inconsistent. The lesson learned is 'velocity becomes a PITA when the goal is accuracy.'
Good groups builds my confidence in the rifle. Odd numbers wreck it. ;)
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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So you didn't say what powder, but here is what I have noticed in two different 204's using CFE.

I found an accurate load in my rifle, which falls into the very light load range. Per the Chrono only it regularly throws 100+ fps variants. However that doesn't appear in the groups. In another members rifle, the results are the same.

As far as a 15-ish fps variant, it depends on your use and groups. For the load I use to a mile in painless, my ES is well into the teens. In a few threads I've shared the groups at 100 aren't brag worthy. But again for the intended use at distance, it isn't what's holding me back.
So are your groups at that distance an issue, or just the numbers?

Cheers
 
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Try a magnum primer .. or a different brand of primers. . I've found that CCI primers seam to work good with all powders. . And in my experience CFE doesn't like light bullets. .
I believe you have a ignition problem. .
Moving the bullet out closer to the lands should help .. but you need to now how close you are .. in your situation closer would be better. . as long as you still have plenty of bullet in the case .. a lee factory crimping die can be very beneficial in this situation
 

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Someone help me here. It's been decades since I've used my chrono. It is still packed away somewhere, but I seem to remember reading or being told that varying light conditions (Sun going in and out among clouds, or even the position of the sun) can fool a Chrony into giving false readings. I remember sometimes having trouble with mine picking up the bullet on a darker overcast day. Maybe it is NOT the loads, but something going on with the Chrony????
 

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I took the goofy little snap together plastic panels off and thru them away and got a
20x30 in. Pice of 1/4 in. White Styrofoam board and stuck the visor support sticks through and tapped them and that works pretty good. . No more cloudy day problems
But your right Blackhawk 355 the sun hitting the croni at a low angle will give a no read or false velocity reading
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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Again, not with a magnetospeed....
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So you didn't say what powder, but here is what I have noticed in two different 204's using CFE.

So are your groups at that distance an issue, or just the numbers?

Cheers
I see this happening with 3 different powders; Varget, TAC and Benchmark. Right now I am using Remington 7 1/2 primers. Bullets have been RMR 69gr HPBT and Hornady 62gr FMJBT.

Have done a soft jam in this gun with the 69gr bullet and there is .130" jump from normal seating length to the lands. Have also tried numerous lengths and none made much difference in speed or group size.

As mentioned have found loads with great groups but horrible numbers and loads with great numbers but horrible groups.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Unless you are going to shoot well beyond 200 yards, or at the highest level of competition.... then frankly I would ignore the numbers, and look at groups. Without shooting it over a second chronograph at the same time, there's not much way to tell if the machine reading the shots is consistent, or not. Given the design of the magneto-speed, I wouldn't think it should produce random odd readings.... but you never know.

That's the problem (challenge) with our hobby stuff; we don't know the details on how it's calibrated and just have to assume it always works right. We don't know the tolerances that it can be expected to read to, either, for the most part.

If your load processes are indeed meticulous, and you are having the same results with several powders, then primers may be the next thing to fiddle with (assuming you can find any). Try whatever variation / brand you aren't using now. Magnum, match, different colored box, etc. May get smaller groups; may not. May get rid of the random high/low readings; may not.

Good luck.
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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As mentioned have found loads with great groups but horrible numbers and loads with great numbers but horrible groups.
Like MikeG, stick with the good groups and ignore the numbers.
I have a friend who's had random reading issues with his mag-speed at times as well. The supposition is/was that there were some loads that would trip it into reading random kernels(or whatever, just like a regular chrono) if the heat/pressure were such to be somewhat magnetic. No clue if that is actually what was going on, but given the group consistency it didn't really matter either.

Cheers
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks folks, was also wondering if this is just the nature of the beast. As this is not a custom Bench gun but just a run of the mill bone stock Savage. Have I " hit the wall" with the gun and components? One of the regular bench shooters has told me also not to pay too much attention to the numbers at this range but watch for group size. I do know and see that I am consistently about 100fps below what the book tells me I should be seeing.
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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Have I " hit the wall" with the gun and components?
I do know and see that I am consistently about 100fps below what the book tells me I should be seeing.
Unless I missed it, you never stated charges. But given the velocities reported against reference material, I wouldn't necessarily expect so. In some of Denton's soak testing, Varget can be rather temp sensitive in the 223. So It is possible that is toying with you.

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Correct I did not state charges as I have seen this with all charges as I have worked up loads. The only thing in these numbers that is consistent is that they do not repeat in any way or fashion. The high/low are completely random.
 

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I've found the Magneto to be extremely consistent overall. Usually, when you get odd velocity readings like you're getting, it is related to the powder/bullet/primer combo, or sometimes the powder measure. I eliminated primers from the mix long ago by standardizing on CCI. They have always been very consistent in every caliber I've used them in, and I can count the number of bad primers out of the box on one hand, even after 3 decades. That said, some combos just don't settle down. You may get great results 98% of the time, but at certain charges, they get flaky. Certain bullets may be erratic with certain powder loads, or at certain pressures. That's why I not only use a chronograph I also graph every load on paper so I can see the trend visually.

Another thing that you may find is that your powder measure is off and throwing inconsistent loads at times. With certain powders if you're right on the edge of a pressure line, a couple extra tenths of a grain can put that load over the line and cause a pressure excursion. Keep in mind also that canister powder is a blend of various lots of powder to get within a certain pressure window. A particular lot may be rated at +-3%, but you might get pockets of powder within that lot that didn't mix quite as well, and that can change the burning rate and/or pressure on individual rounds. I've found this to be more common with stick type powders than ball type, and I have switched over to ball for just about everything because of better consistency. Ball powder is also more likely to be more homogenous chemically grain to grain than stick powder.

If you were shooting an AR instead of a bolt rifle, I'd say don't worry about bullet standoff. I've never wasted my time trying to dial in a specific standoff in any case. I use the cannelure if the bullet has one as the point I seat to, and if it doesn't have one I seat the bullet to the base of the neck, or one caliber of length in the neck. The .223 has a particularly shot neck, so I've always used the cannelure, and since most .223 rifles use a magazine of some sort, max reliable feed length in the magazine determines bullet seating. I use the powder charge to fine tune the load, and always chose accuracy over velocity as long as the speed is reasonable.
 
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