Help choosing powder weight?

Wylyetom

Well-Known Member
I've been working up a load for my 22-250 using 50 grain Vmax and H4895 powder, been out this morning again to try some more loads, I have worked up in 1/2 grain increments from 33 up to 37, there have been no pressure signs on the cases and all have shot well. This is where the indecision lies, below is 4 targets from 120 yards I used this morning, I shot rounds containing 34.5, 35, 36, 37 grain weights but no single weight seems to stand out, I think the third shot every time was me rather than the bullet. I only use the gun for hunting not target shooting but can't make my mind up on which to use, drop at 280 yards only seems to differ by around1.25 inch from 34.5 to 37, so would the hotter round be better as it will be slightly flatter? Looking forward to some advice( be gentle I'm only a novice), Tom
 

simonl

Well-Known Member
I don't think you can draw conclusions from a 3 shot group. I try to find consistency in POI across 3 groups, at 0.3gr increments. The size of the individual group is less important as long as they are within say half inch or so.

That way any inconsistencies in charge weight or temp variations don't change poi.
Somewhere between 35 & 36 there's an inch change in poi, so avoid that region for sure.
 

Wylyetom

Well-Known Member
Hi Simon thanks for the info, I like the point about looking for the consistency over group size, Just to clarify the picture above is the wrong way around, it should be turned anti clockwise by 90 degrees, so all shots were above the bull. Tom
 

Barkingsnake

Well-Known Member
I don't agree. I have lightweight barrels on my rifles and do all my load development using 3 shot groups. Regards JCS
Agreed, even on heavy barrels as it works just great to determine loads worth looking at from ones that are not.

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Eric the Red

Well-Known Member
I would suggest 1gr groups are too big to seek another node. I also would not do yourself down on the spread. I would repeat the test, but I would put in finer increments - if you're looking for speed, certainly look at 36.5 and 37.5. The other thing to consider is speed variance in the group - are you chrono'ing these? Or just go with 34 as it seems fine......!
 
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simonl

Well-Known Member
Agreed, even on heavy barrels as it works just great to determine loads worth looking at from ones that are not.
Agree that 3 shot groups can allow you to exclude lousy charges, but assuming that the 3 shot cloverleaf for 34.5 (top right as shown here) is what that rifle will shoot repeatedly is very likely to lead to disappointment...
Wyelyetom - Suggest you take that 34.5 & rather than tinkering with seating depth etc, fire a couple of 5 shot groups to get an appropriate level of confidence in your results before drawing conclusions.
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
I shoot three shot groups with my hunting rifles but I will shoot with one load only for 60 rounds. If I don't get what I like, I change something. That aside, the OP might want to take what he feels is the most accurate load and put it to the field. If it is suitable, he has his load. If it is wanting, he can change it.

Brain working a load seldom works as well as field working a load.~Muir
 

Barkingsnake

Well-Known Member
Agree that 3 shot groups can allow you to exclude lousy charges, but assuming that the 3 shot cloverleaf for 34.5 (top right as shown here) is what that rifle will shoot repeatedly is very likely to lead to disappointment...
Depends on the rifle and the user.
 

Wylyetom

Well-Known Member
I would suggest 1gr groups are too big to seek another node. I also would not do yourself down on the spread. I would repeat the test, but I would put in finer increments - if you're looking for speed, certainly look at 36.5 and 37.5. The other thing to consider is speed variance in the group - are you chrono'ing these? Or just go with 34 as it seems fine......!
Thanks for the advice every one, I had worked up loads from 33 to 37grains in 1/2 grain increments before I shot this group, when I did this I could not see any real diffefence in group size except for the bullet drop, although the 34.5 was slightly tighter.I was interested to know whether the faster round with more powder would be flatter shooting? or would it lose its speed quicker and become less accurate at extended range, sorry for all my questions but I have only been loading for around 8 months. So far 34.5 seems to be the best.
 

Eric the Red

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't over think it. It works - shoot it. Extended range difference is at 4-500 yards I'd imagine. Just watch how the round performs as the temperature drops as we go into Autumn/Winter - you may need to tweak the load for the colder weather.
 

riflerob

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't over think it. It works - shoot it. Extended range difference is at 4-500 yards I'd imagine. Just watch how the round performs as the temperature drops as we go into Autumn/Winter - you may need to tweak the load for the colder weather.
I would agree. Stop chasing the dragon. Any of those loads seems to work perfectly, so pick one and crack on with it, adjusting if needed for winter.
 

Wylyetom

Well-Known Member
Thanks, I will load up a dozen 34.5 tonight and give them a go, to be honest I am over the moon with there accuracy, and my max shooting range would never exceed 300 yards!
 

garyw

Well-Known Member
your node lies between 36gns and 37gns both shoot to the same poi on the target- load a few more in between and adjust seating depth -dont do both at once -your not far away.
 

nun_hunter

Well-Known Member
I don't agree. I have lightweight barrels on my rifles and do all my load development using 3 shot groups. Regards JCS
I simply shoot two three shot groups on the same target so in essence a six shot group of a certain powder charge but with a barrel cooling break in the middle. It's too easy to pull one shot and then you're left with only two shots that you know were good which isn't enough to tell anything really.
 

Wylyetom

Well-Known Member
Thanks for all the advise, I have been out again this morning to check the 36 - 37 grain loads as Gary suggested, but I have loaded them longer running at 0015'' off the lands, below is the grouping, they were all pretty good and more than enough for hunting but I think I'm going to stick with the top left which was 36 grains, the targets were shot at 100yards and then one shot at 200yards so I could see the drop, the 36 grain load fired the first three shots through the same hole with the fourth slightly lower but this was probably me, the 200 yard shot only seems to have dropped 1/3 inch so will load some up tonight. Thanks again I still have a lot to learn, next the 25-06!
 

ileso

Well-Known Member
Not being a hand loader, but based on your original statement that your concentrating on developing a hunting round. I think that concentrating first on that rather that all the rest will help considerably. Ie: shot distance, penetration and energy at given max distance. Then tweeking the load to suite... at least thats how i would approach the problem. ... i could be wrong though

Edit: ok i see you already did it like that, apologies for the redundant comment, all those groups are adequate for hunting
 
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