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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to be looking for a good Chronograph to use in my load development, I don't want a expensive one but I do want a good one that will work indoors or out if possible, all the pertinent readouts, maybe even one that can print out a hard copy of the shooting event, with a summary of the results.

Does this critter exist?
 

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It does and it's called the ProChrono Digital Chornograph by Competition Electronics:

http://www.competitionelectronics.com/Prochrono Digital.html

Cablelas or Midwayusa.com has them for around $100. YOu can probably do an online search and find it for even less somewhere else. I've had mine for a few years and it has yet to not give me a reading on bullets or arrows, even on cloudy days. IMO, it's the best chrony for the money you can get.
 

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I've got the ProChrono Digital Chornograph by Competition Electronics and I'm really pleased with mine. I've never used it indoors, but they make a kit to make that work.

This has been a real aid in working up loads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
M1Garand said:
It does and it's called the ProChrono Digital Chornograph by Competition Electronics:

http://www.competitionelectronics.com/Prochrono Digital.html

Cablelas or Midwayusa.com has them for around $100. YOu can probably do an online search and find it for even less somewhere else. I've had mine for a few years and it has yet to not give me a reading on bullets or arrows, even on cloudy days. IMO, it's the best chrony for the money you can get.
From what I saw on the web page it seems that to use the thing indoors you need to buy a light accessory to be able to do it, I would rather have one that does not need anextra if you know what I mean.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
faucettb said:
I've got the ProChrono Digital Chornograph by Competition Electronics and I'm really pleased with mine. I've never used it indoors, but they make a kit to make that work.

This has been a real aid in working up loads.
I appreciate the information, I'm trying to stay away from add on light fixtures as that just raisesthe cost of the unit, and requires extra set up time, if it turns out to be the only option then that is where I'll have to go.
 

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It should work if there's enough light overhead and the light is incandescent, not fluorescent. You may have to use a 200 watt bulb instead of a 60 watt.

Bye
Jack
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Jack Monteith said:
It should work if there's enough light overhead and the light is incandescent, not fluorescent. You may have to use a 200 watt bulb instead of a 60 watt.

Bye
Jack
There in lies the rub I shoot at an indoor range most of the time and it is lit by Flouresent Lights, I was told that there was a Chronograph out there that used a on board lighting system that could be used inside or out and even under the dreded Flouresents
 

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I've got that rig. The chronograph runs between $170 and $180, depending on the dealer. The IR accessory screen is two arrays of infra-red light emitting diodes in bars that install in place of the standard diffusers. These are translucent plastic so you can use them as natural light diffusers as well. A power supply plugs in and red and green LEDs that face the shooter confirm whether the voltage to the IR LEDs is adequate (for when you are running them on batteries rather than on AC power). The IR accessory costs another $90. Being real IR, it is invisible and doesn't influence sighting indoors as incandescent glare can.

RSI's website describes a German ballistics lab evaluation test of commercial chronographs measured against a Doppler radar lab instrument. It states that only the CED Millennium and the (no-longer available) Oehler 35 matched these lab measurements well. I have become very leery of the cheap chronographs because my dad's Chrony disagrees with an Oehler 35P I co-own with two other guys by more than 200 fps out of 2500 fps. I can’t speak to the other brands.

I got my CED Millennium chronograph more recently to have a second chronometer downrange to get velocity loss information for calculating ballistic coefficients. Since the CED Millennium and the Oehler 35P are in good agreement, I am able to employ them as a pair, gathering velocity loss data for each shot. Otherwise you have to rely on averages for a string fired near the chronometer against an average for another string fired from a distance, and hope to match conditions and loads for the two strings well enough to get good data. The CED Millennium has a relatively large display that can be read through a spotting scope at 100 yards, to help this process. The main instrument is kept remote from the sensors by wires, like the Oehler, so if you have a low shot you only damage the sensor (replacements available) and not the "brain".

The unit has several features: It has an IR port to communicate directly to any IR-enabled Hewlett-Packard printer without going through a PC. This means you can carry a small battery-powered laptop printer to the range if you need immediate records produced. It also has a PC port and software so you can download its 200-shot memory into a PC and compile records and stats. It can break the memory into strings without having to download (so you can do that at home later), and has separate buttons that provide statistics on the string on demand, even in mid-string. It allows you to review strings a shot at a time and to erase them if necessary. It allows you to ignore an anomolous shot in the stats.

The CED can be used with several different sensor spacings. This is another advantage of remote sensors. It has a robot voice that tells you the velocity just recorded. I thought that was silly until I started measuring air gun pellet velocities in reduced light, where it became an unexpected convenience.

Another feature for IPSC shooters is a power factor calculator. The CED Millennium is the chronometer the IPSC uses in sanctioned matches to determine competitor's power factors for scoring. I've seen pictures of their officials using two CED units in tandem inside black boxes (to avoid ambient light variations) running the IR screen accessories. The second unit validates the first so competitors can't argue they were robbed by a bad reading. They do, however, often learn they didn't have the power factor their cheaper chronograph said they did, and I gather that has occasionally raised some hackles.

NIck
 

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Unclenick that CED does look like good chrony. What chrony does your dad have? From my experience and as far as I can tell, the Pro Chrono digital has been very accurate and has yet to fail giving me a reading.

I shot several brands of factory ammo through it in various calibers to compare to published claims. My results were similar to published claims. I also recently shot some of my 204 Ruger and 32 grn Hornady V-Max's through it. Factory claimed 4225 fps. I got 4225, 4225 and 4230 fps. That seems to be fairly accurate for me and at it's price, one of the better if not best in that range. For someone looking for an inexpensive accurate chrony, I think it's a great choice. That German test would be an interesting read, you don't have a link or anything do you?
 

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Cobra44 said:
I appreciate the information, I'm trying to stay away from add on light fixtures as that just raisesthe cost of the unit, and requires extra set up time, if it turns out to be the only option then that is where I'll have to go.

I believe the "kit" is nothing more than a simple fixture that mounts on the rods. It's about $30-40 on top of the unit cost. So you can get the setup for around $120-130 and nothing against the CED, that looks like a great chrony as well but the setup you are looking at will probably cost you $150 more over the Pro Chrono Digital. Check out midwayusa.com and the feedback on both units:

http://www.midwayusa.com/esearch.ex...+Begin+Search.x=11&Click+to+Begin+Search.y=15
 

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M1Garand,

Dad's chronometer says "Chrony". The Shooting Chrony company made it. I believe they coined the term "Chrony" as short for "chronometer", hoping that people would come to use it as a generic term, the way we use the "Kleenex" brand name to refer to all "facial tissue". It gives them an edge when people go shopping. They got their wish!

I've heard complaints that Shooting Chrony brand instruments suffer reading changes when you tilt them on their tripods, causing them to catch the light differently. Also that they can have blast mistriggering and shift with temperature and other issues, but I haven't tried to replicate any of that myself. A company producing inexpensive units could easily produce some units that are good and some that aren't, and the customer's random good or bad luck would determine which he gets? Also, electronics get cheaper every year, so there is nothing to stop good units from becoming less expensive over time. Certainly the CED Millennium is a lot cheaper than the Oehler was.

As someone who designed electronic instrumentation for a living for many years, I can tell you that doing a side-by-side calibration with a calibrated instrument, or calibration with a reference standard, or doing a result validation by first principles are the only ways to know the absolute accuracy of an instrument. In the case of a chronometer with remote sensors, there is a check you can make by shooting strings through it with the sensors at different spacings to see how much disagreement occurs? This is because the time counting electronics are likely to be extremely accurate (look how well cheap electronic watches work), and it is the bullet shadow sensing precision that is the main source of error. So if you assume timing accuracy, if one sensor is responding faster than the other, the time error introduced should be constant in a given set of conditions, regardless of the sensor spacing. So, if you get readings with two-foot and four-foot spacing that matches, the sensor response is matched (ideal). If you get, say, 1% difference, then you assume the long spacing has given the sensor error half the significance, so the reading difference is half the error caused by sensor response error on the two-foot reading.

For example: You load 50 identical rounds. You fire five as foulers, then 10 over the chronograph with the sensors at two-foot spacing, then 10 with them at four-foot spacing. You clean and cool the gun, fire 5 more foulers, then 10 more rounds at four-foot spacing, and the last 10 at two-foot spacing again. This should distribute fouling, temperature and other condition changes out over the two and four foot measurements. Suppose the average two-foot spaced reading is 3000 fps, and the average four-foot spaced reading is 3030 fps. The first reading was likely low by 60 fps (twice the difference) and the second is likely low by 30 fps, bringing them both up to 3060 fps being the true value. This works out because the error has half the significance in the long spaced reading if the timer is accurate. The bigger the strings are and the more you break them up and alternate them to average performance shifts with conditions, the more confidence you may have in your error correction.

Jim Ristow at RSI did a test with the CED Millennium at two and four feet and got no statistically significant difference in measurement. I think it was 2 ft per second average difference, or some such number (I’d have to look it up). Unfortunately there is no similarly convenient way to check the error in a unit with fixed sensor spacing.

I've seen different rifles of the same type shoot up to 150 fps apart with the same load (M1 Garands, actually, shooting Lake City M72 as low as 2525 fps rather than 2640 fps claimed on the box). That's why you see the warnings not to try to duplicate published loads by loading to their claimed velocities with a chronometer; not even with a known accurate one. The pressures can be quite different in your own gun when you do. Most of the reloading manual numbers come from a firearm sample size of one, and no effort is made to determine how representative that sample is? Matching published velocity claims may be considered to drop a strong hint about whether your chronometer is accurate or not, but it can’t really prove it. Too many variables. What you could say is, the more published examples it matches, the less probable it is that you have a unit that is making gross errors.

Anyway, you may very well have a great tool in hand. I'm not saying it isn't, but just that I don't have a way to tell? It may not have existed when the German tests were done so they may have found no fault with it? I expect they failed to include the relatively new German-made PVM-21 sold by NECO, which looks to be a good instrument. But whether the PVM-21 at $730, or your unit at $120, without a lab test, there is no stand-alone basis to determine how either one compares to absolute as neither appears to have variable sensor spacing? Perhaps the day will come when, as with better thermometers and voltmeters, you will be able to pay a little extra for NIST traceability of calibration? It would be nice to know someone had checked its accuracy out.

The only information I have on the German study is at the end of the RSI page I linked in my previous post. They don't reference the complete work. Because it was a military project, parts might be unavailable to the public. You could write Jim Ristow and ask?

By now someone is shaking their head and saying the science geeks are just way too picky. Well, yeah, probably. It’s what makes the search for the one-holer rifle appeal to us.

Nick
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
unclenick said:
I've got that rig. The chronograph runs between $170 and $180, depending on the dealer. The IR accessory screen is two arrays of infra-red light emitting diodes in bars that install in place of the standard diffusers. These are translucent plastic so you can use them as natural light diffusers as well. A power supply plugs in and red and green LEDs that face the shooter confirm whether the voltage to the IR LEDs is adequate (for when you are running them on batteries rather than on AC power). The IR accessory costs another $90. Being real IR, it is invisible and doesn't influence sighting indoors as incandescent glare can.

RSI's website describes a German ballistics lab evaluation test of commercial chronographs measured against a Doppler radar lab instrument. It states that only the CED Millennium and the (no-longer available) Oehler 35 matched these lab measurements well. I have become very leery of the cheap chronographs because my dad's Chrony disagrees with an Oehler 35P I co-own with two other guys by more than 200 fps out of 2500 fps. I can’t speak to the other brands.

I got my CED Millennium chronograph more recently to have a second chronometer downrange to get velocity loss information for calculating ballistic coefficients. Since the CED Millennium and the Oehler 35P are in good agreement, I am able to employ them as a pair, gathering velocity loss data for each shot. Otherwise you have to rely on averages for a string fired near the chronometer against an average for another string fired from a distance, and hope to match conditions and loads for the two strings well enough to get good data. The CED Millennium has a relatively large display that can be read through a spotting scope at 100 yards, to help this process. The main instrument is kept remote from the sensors by wires, like the Oehler, so if you have a low shot you only damage the sensor (replacements available) and not the "brain".

The unit has several features: It has an IR port to communicate directly to any IR-enabled Hewlett-Packard printer without going through a PC. This means you can carry a small battery-powered laptop printer to the range if you need immediate records produced. It also has a PC port and software so you can download its 200-shot memory into a PC and compile records and stats. It can break the memory into strings without having to download (so you can do that at home later), and has separate buttons that provide statistics on the string on demand, even in mid-string. It allows you to review strings a shot at a time and to erase them if necessary. It allows you to ignore an anomolous shot in the stats.

The CED can be used with several different sensor spacings. This is another advantage of remote sensors. It has a robot voice that tells you the velocity just recorded. I thought that was silly until I started measuring air gun pellet velocities in reduced light, where it became an unexpected convenience.

Another feature for IPSC shooters is a power factor calculator. The CED Millennium is the chronometer the IPSC uses in sanctioned matches to determine competitor's power factors for scoring. I've seen pictures of their officials using two CED units in tandem inside black boxes (to avoid ambient light variations) running the IR screen accessories. The second unit validates the first so competitors can't argue they were robbed by a bad reading. They do, however, often learn they didn't have the power factor their cheaper chronograph said they did, and I gather that has occasionally raised some hackles.

NIck
This is the unit I think I am going to get, I just told the wife that I will ask for it for Christmas and every body can chip in on it and that it would be the only thing I am asking for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
M1Garand said:
I believe the "kit" is nothing more than a simple fixture that mounts on the rods. It's about $30-40 on top of the unit cost. So you can get the setup for around $120-130 and nothing against the CED, that looks like a great chrony as well but the setup you are looking at will probably cost you $150 more over the Pro Chrono Digital. Check out midwayusa.com and the feedback on both units:

http://www.midwayusa.com/esearch.ex...+Begin+Search.x=11&Click+to+Begin+Search.y=15
Still leaning toward the CED unit.
 

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Might also look at a PACT. They've got a kit that lets you shoot under flourecent lights. I've got the PACT model 1 XP and it's pretty darn good so far.

RJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
M1Garand said:
Looks like a great choice as well. Good luck and look forward to some results and input once you get her up and running.
Looks as though I may have to wait until Christmas before I can get it. DANG I hope not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
recoil junky said:
Might also look at a PACT. They've got a kit that lets you shoot under flourecent lights. I've got the PACT model 1 XP and it's pretty darn good so far.

RJ
Thanks for your response but I think I'm Going to go with the CED Unit.
 
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