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Thread: Copper bullet load development preparation

  1. #1

    Copper bullet load development preparation

    I will soon be heading the the range to test a batch of development loads for some Barnes TSX. While there I also have a batch of target rounds (Sierra Match Kings) to test with a muzzel brake.

    I've read a few things that suggest that the Barnes shoot better from a really clean barrel and that they can then deposit a fair bit of copper in the barrel. With this in mind should I do anything in preparation or follow a particlar order of fire? Such as a deep clean of the barrel beforehand, shoot the Barnes first followed by the Sierras or vica versa or just shoot them with the barrel lightly fouled (as is how I usually shoot)?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    I don't do any special cleaning for shooting TSX's in my .222 & .270. They don't seem to cause fouling any worse than jacketed bullets.

    Hope it goes well and you don't have to shoot too many bullets to find a reasonable load.

  3. #3
    Barnes TSX & TTSX have deep canelures on the bearing surface to reduce pressures & copper fouling. - It works! I shoot TTSX & TSX in 6mm & 30 cal & get almost no fouling.
    The original Barnes solids didn't have the canelures & did suffer apparently.
    Start with a clean unfouled barrel & you should be ok.

    Ian

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Yorric View Post
    Barnes TSX & TTSX have deep canelures on the bearing surface to reduce pressures & copper fouling. - It works! I shoot TTSX & TSX in 6mm & 30 cal & get almost no fouling.
    The original Barnes solids didn't have the canelures & did suffer apparently.
    Start with a clean unfouled barrel & you should be ok.

    Ian
    That's 100% correct. The original plain-shank X-Bullets were notorious barrel foulers, needed a scrupulously clean barrel to group well, and in any event didn't perform that well anyway in many rifles. Then Barnes Bullets adopted a practice long-known to cast lead bullet designers and shooters, machine in relieving grooves. As the full diameter sections of the bullet shank are swaged down in the rifling, some metal is displaced into the grooves relieving pressure and giving a generally much better result all round.

    One other beneficial result is that there isn't a great deal of difference between maximum loads for these bullets in the latest Barnes manuals from those for equivalent traditional lead core / gilding metal jacket types, whereas the original plain surface all-copper types usually needed a substantial charge reduction to stay within allowable pressures thanks to their longer bodies and greater contact surface area.

  5. #5
    I recently got a box of 139 Hornady GMX bullets. I have a very good load with 139gn Interlocks and it's well below the max. I loaded up five GMX with the same powder load, and to the same COL. First shot- no pressure signs, and to pretty much same point of aim - just a smidge higher. The rest went into a one inch group. So have loaded up 20 and going hunting.

  6. #6
    Thanks guys, I think I'll just give it a good clean beforehand and then crack on as normal.

  7. #7
    Well just to confound the myths...

    i am am shooting XLC, non driving band cannulure Barnes solid copper alloy bullets
    havent cleaned the barrel more than a few patches and a pull through prior to load development and testing

    They group well, with the same point of impact and it does not appear to impact on group size on either of the two other loads I shoot in the same rifle

  8. #8
    good stuff this makes it all the more appealing to develop two rounds to use without the issues I had read about. The issues were probably due to older articles regarding the Barnes without the canelures.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by bewsher500 View Post
    Well just to confound the myths...

    i am am shooting XLC, non driving band cannulure Barnes solid copper alloy bullets
    havent cleaned the barrel more than a few patches and a pull through prior to load development and testing

    They group well, with the same point of impact and it does not appear to impact on group size on either of the two other loads I shoot in the same rifle
    'C' = Coated. That was Barnes Bullets' first and partially successful response to the barrel fouling and resulting problems, a friction reducing coating that is.

    If the original 'X' problems were a 'myth', why did Barnes Bullets develop the strongest, fastest working copper cleaning solvent on the market at that time and stress its value and use in its literature?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Laurie View Post
    'C' = Coated. That was Barnes Bullets' first and partially successful response to the barrel fouling and resulting problems, a friction reducing coating that is.

    If the original 'X' problems were a 'myth', why did Barnes Bullets develop the strongest, fastest working copper cleaning solvent on the market at that time and stress its value and use in its literature?
    sorry, perhaps myth wasn't the right word

    I was concerned about the coating fouling and not knowing what it actually is (moly?) I expected it to affect bullet performance of my other cup and core/BT
    so far so good

    personally despite the current decent results in initial testing I am not sure the whole copper discussion on toxicity is a valid one

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