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Sharing some Load Data - getting 155gr bullets to major


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Hey everyone.  I've been experimenting with lighter bullets in .40 trying to make major.  My latest test was with some Montana Gold 155 grain FMJs I picked up off the prize table at Battle In the Bluegrass this year.  I'm experimenting to see whether I like lighter or heavier bullets better.  I've shot plenty of 180s and 200s and I'm currently using 200's at matches, but noticing that the recoil feels slow.  When I started using them I had been shooting Single Stack running 230gr bullets in .45 so it felt similar.

I'm sharing so my tests can be of some use to others who might be searching for load data.

I did notice that the 155's produced a significantly faster recoil impulse, especially when approaching major power factor.  It wasn't harsh, which is good, but it did get the slide moving faster which is what I think I'm looking for.  All of these were tested in my Brazos Custom Pro Series Limited gun.  The barrel is a 5" Bar-Sto.

All of these use the same bullet, same powder, mixed brass, CCI SP Primers, and same OAL.  The only difference was the amount of powder in the cases.  I'm trying to make major with these and I know I can go safely up to 5.9gr of Titegroup loaded to 1.125 per Hodgdon's data for Hornady XTP bullets, so I'm going to load up some more starting at 5.5gr going up to 6.0gr at 1.20 OAL to get more data and see how they feel.  I was on the edge of a consistent major power factor load at 5.5gr so 5.6 or 5.7 should make it consistently at 1.20 OAL.  I'm also going to load some to 1.80 OAL starting at 5.2gr and up to 6.0gr because the bullets are pretty short and could probably stand to be seated a little deeper.

 

The good news is as the powder charge increased to the point where the load would reach major power factor, the extreme spread and standard deviation lowered.  That's promising.  I think as long as accuracy is good, this would be a pretty awesome, VERY fast recoiling load to make .40 major.  I will post results of the rest of my tests using this bullet once I get out to test them and also some more data with 165gr BBI's which I should be receiving in a day or so.

 

I did not test for accuracy.  That will come later and will be based on my abilities.  I don't have a realistic rest to truly test for accuracy anyway so testing for accuracy will be subjective...

 

1. 155gr MG FMJ, 4.9gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 896

Max Velocity: 950

Avg Velocity: 932

Extreme Spread: 54

Standard Deviation: 17

Avg Power Factor: 144

 

2. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.0gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 907

Max Velocity: 983

Avg Velocity: 958

Extreme Spread: 76

Standard Deviation: 20

Avg Power Factor: 148

 

3. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.1gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 962

Max Velocity: 1014

Avg Velocity: 982

Extreme Spread: 52

Standard Deviation: 14

Avg Power Factor: 152

 

4. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.2gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 986

Max Velocity: 1029

Avg Velocity: 1009

Extreme Spread: 43

Standard Deviation: 14

Avg Power Factor: 156

 

5. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.3gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 996

Max Velocity: 1036

Avg Velocity: 1018

Extreme Spread: 40

Standard Deviation: 15

Avg Power Factor: 157

 

6. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.4gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 1006

Max Velocity: 1044

Avg Velocity: 1030

Extreme Spread: 38

Standard Deviation: 12

Avg Power Factor: 159

 

7. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.5gr Titegroup, 1.20 OAL

Min Velocity: 1051

Max Velocity: 1091

Avg Velocity: 1061

Extreme Spread: 40

Standard Deviation: 12

Avg Power Factor: 164

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3 hours ago, bkrumme said:

 

I did not test for accuracy.  That will come later and will be based on my abilities.  I don't have a realistic rest to truly test for accuracy anyway so testing for accuracy will be subjective...

 

 

Yes you do.  Get somewhere where you can sit at a table, roll up a bath towel, take your normal two-handed grip, and rest your wrists on the rolled up bath towel.  It works beautifully. ;) 

Edited by IDescribe
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8 hours ago, FortyOverUnder said:

Think about changing OAL to 1.180?

Side note: stop winning things like awesome guns and bullets and stuff.

 

Yes. I'm going to load some more loaded shorter.  My gun runs very well with rounds at 1.195-1.20, though so I like to keep them close to that.

 

And I can't help it if I get picked in random draws and nobody picks up the 155gr bullets until I'm called ;)

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6 hours ago, IDescribe said:

 

Yes you do.  Get somewhere where you can sit at a table, roll up a bath towel, take your normal two-handed grip, and rest your wrists on the rolled up bath towel.  It works beautifully. ;) 

 

I can always do something like that and I will to make sure the accuracy is acceptable for me, but there are still going to be variations due to grip/trigger control. Obviously I will be able to see major accuracy problems with the load even if I shoot offhand, but the results are still limited to what I am capable of.  To objectively test for accuracy you need a ransom rest. That's the only way I feel the data could be of use to someone else.

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IPSC major is what you are looking for (170PF) or is USPSA major PF slightly lower? The loads you have appear to be slightly lower for a 170PF, and this is why usually would be best to go for a bit more heavier projectile. 

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More data to go along with this since I finally had a chance to get out to the range and test more loads.  None showed pressure signs.  I also had the chance to try some 165gr BBI bullets which are what I would use if I went to a light bullet.

As far as feel, these 155gr bullets are VERY fast.  With the 200gr bullets I've been using I can see the sights lift and come back down.  These are so fast they've snapped back nearly instantaneously.  The 165gr bullets are nearly as fast.  I'm going to load up a bunch using the bolded loads below and run them in practice and at some club matches to see how I do with them.

1. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.6gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1064, Max Velocity: 1116, Avg Velocity: 1072, Extreme Spread: 52, Standard Deviation: 15, Avg Power Factor: 166

2. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.7gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1059, Max Velocity: 1110, Avg Velocity: 1081, Extreme Spread: 51, Standard Deviation: 16, Avg Power Factor: 167

3. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.8gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1062, Max Velocity: 1098, Avg Velocity: 1079, Extreme Spread: 36, Standard Deviation: 13, Avg Power Factor: 167

4. 155gr MG FMJ, 5.9gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1076, Max Velocity: 1116, Avg Velocity: 1093, Extreme Spread: 40, Standard Deviation: 13, Avg Power Factor: 169

5. 155gr MG FMJ, 6.0gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1098, Max Velocity: 1119, Avg Velocity: 1109, Extreme Spread: 21, Standard Deviation: 6, Avg Power Factor: 171

 

6. 165gr BBI RNFP, 4.6gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 933, Max Velocity: 981, Avg Velocity: 958, Extreme Spread: 48, Standard Deviation: 16, Avg Power Factor: 158

7. 165gr BBI RNFP, 4.7gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 957, Max Velocity: 994, Avg Velocity: 978, Extreme Spread: 37, Standard Deviation: 11, Avg Power Factor: 161

8. 165gr BBI RNFP, 4.8gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 976, Max Velocity: 1019, Avg Velocity: 993, Extreme Spread: 43, Standard Deviation: 15, Avg Power Factor: 163

9. 165gr BBI RNFP, 4.9gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 984, Max Velocity: 1014, Avg Velocity: 997, Extreme Spread: 30, Standard Deviation: 9, Avg Power Factor: 164

10. 165gr BBI RNFP, 5.0gr Titegroup, 1.185 OAL, Min Velocity: 1009, Max Velocity: 1058, Avg Velocity: 1026, Extreme Spread: 49, Standard Deviation: 14, Avg Power Factor: 169

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On 7/13/2017 at 8:52 PM, bkrumme said:

My latest test was with some Montana Gold 155 grain FMJs I picked up off the prize table at Battle In the Bluegrass this year.  

 

Uhh...ahem...those were supposed to be MINE, thank you very much.  LOL!  :P  :roflol:  :sight:

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