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Loads By Reed








Posted by: Reed - 8/19/2002 (11:18 a.m.) I have some data that I thought Id share with the other Savage fans. This is sort of a synopsis of my experiences with this muzzleloader to date. It should show some real life data from yet another source and hopefully help others avoid needlessly duplicating certain things. Ive encountered a problem or two that Ill mention in another post.

Ive been testing 3 bullets, the 175g Devel, the 300g Hornady HP, and the 340g PR Dead Center. Ive been testing these using two powders, Lil Gun, and H-777. I finally completed my load testing where I was shooting progressively larger charge weights over a chronograph and proceeded to some group testing as of yesterday. Ill share both load data and some group sizes. Also, the chrono was an Oehler 35P placed about as far away as the cords would allow and this distance may have varied somewhat as I see some inconsistencies in my data that corresponds to shooting certain loads on different days. Shooting this ML in the hot Missouri summer means that it takes several days to compile this amount of data due to the finite number of shots available in any one day, not to mention the abuse of shooting these HOT loads.

All shots were fired after cooling the barrel with a wet towel stored on those little plastic ice blocks between shots. I also ran spit-dampened patches down the barrel between each shot. The smokeless powder only needed one patch while the H-777 needed two. Other constants, Savage ML-10 II, stainless steel (with a lapped barrel), synthetic stock, Leupold 4.5-14x40 scope, Win W209 primers, use of the double sabot method with use of 28ga. Shotshell wad bases and two felt disks rammed home prior to seating the bullet. All groups mentioned in this post were fired at 100 yards off of a concrete bench.

Regarding H-777, I am working from weights off of an analytical balance, no volume charging for this shooter.

Ill list the chrono data rather than eat up room in table format. You might notice that with my load data I tried to choose a charge weight for group testing where the velocities were no longer increasing with the increase in powder charge. This is particularly pronounced in the H-777 data.

Data:

175g Devel

Lil Gun:

46, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62, & 64g charge weights yielded 2400, 2610, 2631, 2602, 2795, 2789, 2840, 2775, & 2863 fps respectively.

Group: using 64g Lil Gun I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 2.206 inches.

H-777:

100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, & 160g charge WEIGHTS yielded 2035, 2147, 2114, 2195, 2123, 2162, & 2180 fps respectively.

Group: using 120g of H-777 I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 3.649 inches.

300g Hornady:

Lil Gun:

46, 48, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, & 60g charge weights yielded 2265, 2326, 2353, 2395, 2452, 2470, 2507, & 2542 fps respectively.

Group: using 60g Lil Gun I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 0.655 inches. This was the first group of the day after shooting a few fouler shots with Lil Gun with a bore that had been cleaned completely the previous evening.

H-777:

100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, & 160g charge WEIGHTS yielded 1769, 1806, 1845, 1887, 1828, 1850, & 1867 fps respectively.

Group: using 150g H-777 I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 3.948 inches. This was the last group of the day for me so the barrel may have had too much sludge and I may have been tired as the first two shots were separated by 1 inch and the 3rd shot opened it up to almost 4 inches.

340g Dead Center

Lil Gun:

46, 48, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, & 60g charge weights yielded 2130, 2183, 2211, 2284, 2311, 2344, 2383, & 2403 fps respectively.

Group: using 60g Lil Gun I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 1.180 inches.

H-777:

100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, & 160g charge WEIGHTS yielded 1669, 1716, 1735, 1747, 1752, 1759, & 1757 fps respectively.

Group: using 120g H-777 I had a 3-shot group at 100 yards of 2.618 inches.

I'd certainly be interested in any thoughts or suggestions you might have or any question about something I failed to add. Sorry for the length of the message but this addresses about 5 range sessions.

Reed