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Strange results Factory ammo versus reloads..

This is a discussion on Strange results Factory ammo versus reloads.. within the Reloading forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; So today I finally got a chance to take out the 243 winchester ar I built after sending the barrel back to bhw to be ...


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Old January 12th, 2017, 05:38 PM   #1
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Strange results Factory ammo versus reloads..

So today I finally got a chance to take out the 243 winchester ar I built after sending the barrel back to bhw to be tweaked. Its a black hole weaponry .936 bull, 1n9" twist. So I had several types of ammo.

Factory ammo---
Hornady superformance 95 grain sst
Nosler ballistic tip 90 grain
Winchester 95 grain soft point.

Reloaded ammo---
Sierra 95 grain tipped match king, imr 4831 powder #200 cci
Hornady 95 grain sst with superformance powder #200 cci

So I fired the rifle to check zero and function, all was good. First the winchester soft point. Produced about 3 moa, no groups.

Second I fired the sierra match king reload, well under 1moa.

Third was the the factory hornady superformance 95, somewhere close to 2 to 2.5 moa, it would group, but I feel was more luck.

Fourth my reloads with the same bullet and powder, under 1moa, very tight groups, same point of aim and impact as the sierra reload. I was not expecting that at all.

Then the 90 grain nosler factory ammo, it shot close to 4 moa with no groupings, seemed to be all flyers. So I then loaded a few more of the smk's dead on the money still at under 1moa.

So the reason I was testing was to see what the rifle liked the best, and have brass to reload. So now I have 2 choices atleast. But what I wasn't prepared for was the difference between the hornady factory ammo, and my reloads with the same powder and bullets. That was totally unexpected. I know my reloads are very precise, because I am very detailed in loading them, but I never thought it would produce such different results. Any of you guys ever experienced this?



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Old January 12th, 2017, 06:36 PM   #2
 
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Maybe it's me, but I've never had a bolt action, single shot, or semi auto, that would shot anywhere as tight as any of my reloads. Yes I'm very peculiar about my rifle rounds. Everything is checked for weight and measure beforehand. It's assembled with the utmost care because it's made for hunting. I've given factory rounds of every brand more than a fair chance and they just don't seem to group.
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Old January 12th, 2017, 06:39 PM   #3
 
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First time I've heard of an AR build in .243, but I gotta say, I like the idea. Don't know why your AR doesn't like the factory ammo. How much difference is there between the factory ammo and your reloads as far as the muzzle velocity?
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Old January 12th, 2017, 07:11 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Bozz48 View Post
First time I've heard of an AR build in .243, but I gotta say, I like the idea. Don't know why your AR doesn't like the factory ammo. How much difference is there between the factory ammo and your reloads as far as the muzzle velocity?
Well I custom ordered the barrel to my specs. It has a lr308 barrel extension so its compatible with the dpms LR 308 components. Reason I decided to do 243 win is that I already have several 308's, and for some reason lately i have been building 6mm rifles, 6.5 grendel, 25-45 sharps, 6.8spc etc. But anyways thats another story.

I didn't have a chronograph setup although now I wish I had. It started out to be a function testing trip, that I ended up sending more rounds downrange than I planned, my reason for no chrono.

The factory superformance rounds felt more heavy recoiling than my superformance reloads, I did notice that. My reloads were at the max load in the 9th edition hornady manual. They were close to the same length 2.613" both cannlure, i taper crimped mine with a lee factory crimp die, I assume the factory rounds were roll crimped, they appeared to be. Other than that I really have no clue. I would have thought it would have been way closer. The barrel is 1n9" twist 3 polygonal rifled, 20" and its free floated. Here is a picture of the rifle. This is a real head stomper, and something I have not witnessed between factory and my reloads before.

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Old January 12th, 2017, 07:15 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Smokey Joe View Post
Maybe it's me, but I've never had a bolt action, single shot, or semi auto, that would shot anywhere as tight as any of my reloads. Yes I'm very peculiar about my rifle rounds. Everything is checked for weight and measure beforehand. It's assembled with the utmost care because it's made for hunting. I've given factory rounds of every brand more than a fair chance and they just don't seem to group.
I understand that, since I started reloading a decade ago or more I pretty much only shoot my reloads. I may try factory ammo to get an idea of the rounds it likes, then improve on it at the bench, but for the most part, only time I shoot factory ammo is when I need brass to reload, sometimes its cheaper to buy loaded rounds, fire them to break the barrel in or plink, and reload them, than it is to buy the brass, and roll your own. Its that way with 6.5 grendel, 6.8spc and 50bmg for sure.
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Old January 12th, 2017, 09:47 PM   #6
 
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Originally Posted by Bozz48 View Post
First time I've heard of an AR build in .243, but I gotta say, I like the idea. . . .
I believe the original was called "6mAR" made by Robert Whitley. You can read about it (and other variants) on 6mmAR.com. Brass is formed from 6.5 Grendel; he has custom made Redding dies in stock along with everything else one needs.

Bought my upper from Robert and mounted it on a RR LAR15 lower. Given the high-quality barrel he uses (eg Bartlein) and the superior BCs of the 243 bullet, they shoot pretty well lol.

Last edited by Twoboxer; January 12th, 2017 at 09:51 PM.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 01:21 AM   #7
 
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I believe the original was called "6mAR" made by Robert Whitley. You can read about it (and other variants) on 6mmAR.com. Brass is formed from 6.5 Grendel; he has custom made Redding dies in stock along with everything else one needs.

Bought my upper from Robert and mounted it on a RR LAR15 lower. Given the high-quality barrel he uses (eg Bartlein) and the superior BCs of the 243 bullet, they shoot pretty well lol.
I wonder if that upper will work on a S&W M&P??
Seem like it ought to, but I don't know what, if anything, S&W changed around.
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Old February 4th, 2017, 12:01 PM   #8
 
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I wonder if that upper will work on a S&W M&P??
Seem like it ought to, but I don't know what, if anything, S&W changed around.
Don't know, and apparently Doylestown PA is a bit of a ride from where you are Try emailing Robert . . . there's a tiny email link tippytop-right on his home page. He may well have experienced success or failure with an M&P lower.
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Old February 7th, 2017, 08:40 AM   #9
 
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When I bought my RAP in 6.5 C I bought the Hornady Superformance rounds in different weights (123 gr, 129 gr, 140 gr) to see how it would shoot with a "performance oriented" factory round. I was soundly disappointed. I pulled a few apart and checked the powder charges and found that there were some that had a half grain over/under. My reloads using Hornady specs however, are really accurate, 0.6 moa at 200yds my personal best. Factory rounds, when I could get a measurable group, were probably 1.5 to 2 moa.
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Old March 23rd, 2017, 10:02 AM   #10
 
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You da man Tacky! No really...You have a great caliber there, shot .243 for a few years and killed quite a few Missouri deer with them. But I kinda wonder about the factory production these days. I'm sure you're like all of us that load and you more so than me since you've been loading longer, sounds like. But I have a good friend that worked at Lake City for 21 years. He laughed the first time he saw me pick up a box of Fexxxxx ammo. Curious, I asked him why. He said "if you knew what I know and have seen what I have there you wouldn't ask." Basically it came down to the machines being set to run at such high production speeds to satisfy military and other contracts. The tolerances on those machines are so loose that as long as they don't trip the markers and stop the lines, it's considered ok. "If you had a production line kick off, there was hell to pay." Then I asked him how they could get by with it, he shook his head. "have you ever looked up the ball (FMJ) standards?" Remembering I had an old copy at home I told him I would look again. From the Army standard, "the ammunition passes standard for XM855 if rounds hold 12" groups at 100 meters. Standard for match ammo is 6" !! So yeah I think you and quite a few of us may be loading quite a bit better than factory!!
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Old March 23rd, 2017, 12:17 PM   #11
 
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I think I read somewhere that the powder in Hornady's factory Superformance loads is a blend of powders and different from the Superformace powder they sell a la carte.

Getting chronograph readings would be beneficial in helping determine what is going on.
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Old March 23rd, 2017, 04:35 PM   #12
 
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That's the very reason I started reloading years ago because I can always customize a more accurate load than any factory round, especially my bolt riffles
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Old March 23rd, 2017, 05:14 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Dragonscout View Post
You da man Tacky! No really...You have a great caliber there, shot .243 for a few years and killed quite a few Missouri deer with them. But I kinda wonder about the factory production these days. I'm sure you're like all of us that load and you more so than me since you've been loading longer, sounds like. But I have a good friend that worked at Lake City for 21 years. He laughed the first time he saw me pick up a box of Fexxxxx ammo. Curious, I asked him why. He said "if you knew what I know and have seen what I have there you wouldn't ask." Basically it came down to the machines being set to run at such high production speeds to satisfy military and other contracts. The tolerances on those machines are so loose that as long as they don't trip the markers and stop the lines, it's considered ok. "If you had a production line kick off, there was hell to pay." Then I asked him how they could get by with it, he shook his head. "have you ever looked up the ball (FMJ) standards?" Remembering I had an old copy at home I told him I would look again. From the Army standard, "the ammunition passes standard for XM855 if rounds hold 12" groups at 100 meters. Standard for match ammo is 6" !! So yeah I think you and quite a few of us may be loading quite a bit better than factory!!
Thanks bud, yes I can see the truth in what you stated about factory ammo. The federal gold medal match 168 in 308 is pretty consistant. The rest.....not really. Well I just recently did a barrel swap, had an issue with the first barrel, so now it wears an 18 shilen match, tactical contour, 1n8 twist in 243win. The other day I started the break in process, fired 56 rounds, it seemed to like the 95 grain tmk sierra with 4831. So next I am gonna revisit the heavy 105, and 107 with the new faster twist rate. Wish me luck.




Quote:
Originally Posted by DDelambre View Post
I think I read somewhere that the powder in Hornady's factory Superformance loads is a blend of powders and different from the Superformace powder they sell a la carte.

Getting chronograph readings would be beneficial in helping determine what is going on.
You are correct. I need to chrono the rounds to see whats going on. Thats surprising about the alcarte mixture, but I do not doubt it.
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Old March 24th, 2017, 03:21 AM   #14
 
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I am not really surprised at all with your results.

Reloading = better accuracy, more choices, less expensive per round, & enjoyment of DIY
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