Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Tue May 07, 2019 7:47 pm

I finally got out to shoot a few more of the cast heavies at 100m, about 30 or so. I ran some at the post-PC size of .454 and some I sized again back down to .452. I'm settled on sizing twice, once before, and once after PC. Mostly pictures on this post, but 29.3 grains of Shooters World Blackout gave perfect cycling on all but 2 shots of the 28 I loaded up (still using a 1oz buffer). I should have shot paper for a real group, but I only had my steel. Also, these things hit like a hammer, check out the log a bullet traveled all the way through, stopping with the base forward.
454.png
454.png (118.74 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


452.png
452.png (111.54 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


Sized to .452 then PC (finished at .454)
IMG_20190507_172141275-436x581.jpg
IMG_20190507_172141275-436x581.jpg (108.44 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


Sized to .452, PC'd, then sized again to .452
IMG_20190507_173238004-436x581.jpg
IMG_20190507_173238004-436x581.jpg (91.35 KiB) Viewed 1260 times
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Tue May 07, 2019 7:51 pm

Log was shot at 50 meters

Front view of the bullet entry into log
IMG_20190507_173134818-436x581.jpg
IMG_20190507_173134818-436x581.jpg (116.99 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


Top down view showing the width of the log
IMG_20190507_173121974-436x581.jpg
IMG_20190507_173121974-436x581.jpg (118.68 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


Bullet came to rest under the bark
IMG_20190507_173157760-530x707.jpg
IMG_20190507_173157760-530x707.jpg (75.7 KiB) Viewed 1260 times


Pulled bullet
IMG_20190507_173543637_HDR-436x581.jpg
IMG_20190507_173543637_HDR-436x581.jpg (86.29 KiB) Viewed 1260 times
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Hoot » Tue May 07, 2019 8:45 pm

Good Grief, I would have expected more deformation after all that! :shock:

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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Tue May 07, 2019 8:49 pm

Hoot wrote:Good Grief, I would have expected more deformation after all that! :shock:

Hoot


I know right? Especially after doing a 180 degree flip in a fairly dried out log (fell during Hurricane Florence). Maybe some day I'll open it up with a chain saw....
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Wed May 08, 2019 10:13 am

The primers of the .452 sized rounds looked more or less normal. Some of the primers of the .454 size rounds were flat. Its hard to tell on the low quality photo.

452 sized
fired cases 452.jpg
fired cases 452.jpg (97.32 KiB) Viewed 1243 times


454 sized
Fired cases 454.jpg
Fired cases 454.jpg (99.13 KiB) Viewed 1243 times


I'm also pretty set on opening up my gas port diameter. Has anyone done it with a hand reamer? I don't want to use a hand drill with a drill bit and I don't have a drill press. Just looking for any tips out there.
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Hoot » Wed May 08, 2019 12:24 pm

Rklenke wrote:...snip...
I'm also pretty set on opening up my gas port diameter. Has anyone done it with a hand reamer? I don't want to use a hand drill with a drill bit and I don't have a drill press. Just looking for any tips out there.


With a set of sharp numerical bits and a drop of oil, you can open it up with a hand drill as long as you have somewhat of an eye for a right angle, move one number at a time and don't shake like Don Knots. This allows you to actually experiment right at the range, assuming its not overly restrictive. Sure saves time running back and forth from home. Though the change is very minimal from one number to the next, I do advise cleaning the bore and retesting after each increment. That will keep the size change down to just what is needed to get the job done.

I won't bother repeating all the advice about what constitutes a need for a port diameter change versus proper break-in and lubrication. That has been plentifully shared around here already and anyone considering enlarging their port should have already read it. IE Enlarging the port diameter is the last resort to a cycling issue.. I've had to do it once, when all else had failed, on a rifle length gas system, for use with fast, 200gr bullet recipes. Repeat: Last Resort.

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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Fri Nov 29, 2019 9:18 pm

I'm bringing this thread back from the dead with some interesting (to me) information. I just recently got into gas checks since I've been avoiding them due to info read here on the forum. It is an extra time consuming step, but I'm already seeing some good results. I'm not going to start a new thread for a range report on a 500gr bullet, but I bought the Lee C457-500 and I'll post my results on here.

I bought the aluminum and copper gas checks from Sages reloading supply and have been so happy with the aluminum that I haven't even tried the copper. The aluminum measure 0.082" tall whereas the copper measure 0.068" tall. I well with the taller ones and didn't look back.

gas checks.jpg
gas checks.jpg (92.94 KiB) Viewed 615 times


The Lee C457-500 bullet (when run through the Berger stability calculator) comes up as stable, in contrast to the 459-500, which came up as marginally stable. It has a flat point which gives a wide range of seating depth possibilities (I tried from 2.05" to 2.2" COAL), and due to the smaller diameter from the 459, sizes and GC in one pass, so much less work than the 459.

bullets.jpg
Lee 457-340, Lee 459-500, Lee C457-500
bullets.jpg (114.33 KiB) Viewed 615 times


I just picked up a 454 sizer and decided to throw myself another variable, one that worked out well. I started at the subsonic baseline that I established with the spire point bullets of 23 grains Shooters World Blackout and decided to not adjust powder yet as I do have a lot of variables with crimp (also bought the Lee FC which I like much better than the Hornady taper crimp), COAL, diameter, etc. I shot a lot more than the groups posted below during workups, but not on sight-in targets at 100m, so I'll exclude them.

Constants: 23 grains SWBO, Starline brass, 2.2" COAL, Lee FC, 100m range
Variables: .452 / .454

String one: .452 sized bullets
Foul: 1023 fps
1: 1040
2: 1013
3: 1027
4: 978
5: 1003

String two:
Foul: 1046
1: 1040
2: 1020
3: 1013
4: 1050
5: 1027

target.jpg
target.jpg (111.13 KiB) Viewed 615 times


I was very impressed by the .454 sized bullets and will continue testing with that as my new constant. None of them cycled the action fully, but they were fired unsuppressed, that will have to wait until my tax stamp is approved. Until then I'll be burning through my lead, 500 grains at a time. The next step is using some more consistent brass. My poor Starline has been fired 3-4 times and may not be holding a consistent crimp. They will need to be annealed soon if anyone has friends with an annealing machine...
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Thu Dec 12, 2019 9:21 pm

Next nice day I get I'll be looking into the different gas check options. Below are my constants:

Trimmed Starline brass 1.7" (3ish firings)
Lee C457-500 PC and sized to .454
23.0 grains SWBO
2.20" COAL

In the picture below you can see the differences between the different GC options. They are all from Sages Outdoors. The aluminum and copper GC are very clean and smooth while the tall GC seem to have a "tag" where they were punched out. In terms of "felt" neck tension as I was seating the bullets, the copper GC seated the easiest, followed by the aluminum, followed by the tall GC. I've loaded 5 identical of each bullet and plan to shoot at 50m.

IMG_20191212_092144_2-446x446.jpg
IMG_20191212_092144_2-446x446.jpg (95.3 KiB) Viewed 512 times


The two shorter GC pop right on and center while the tall GC are more difficult to fully seat prior to running it through the die. I get around this by putting the GC on the base of the bullet, setting the bullet on the punch, and running it up into the bullet seating die set so that it firmly seats the GC on the shank. Next the bullet is run through the sizing die. It's a little extra work, I'm hoping it's worth it.
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby c_franklin50 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 2:02 pm

Rklenke any further updates on this project? I got my tax stamp back after almost a year and looking to do much of the same that you are for deer hunting one major easement for me is i am loading for a bolt gun with a 1:16.
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Re: Heavy Cast Subsonic Bullets (500 grain) Range Report

Postby Rklenke » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:45 pm

c_franklin50 wrote:Rklenke any further updates on this project? I got my tax stamp back after almost a year and looking to do much of the same that you are for deer hunting one major easement for me is i am loading for a bolt gun with a 1:16.


I'm super happy to see a reply here, I swear this place has been a ghost town recently. I found that I get my best results when I check with the tall checks from Sages outdoor supply and size to .454. Then I powder coat the entire bullet and the finished product will be .455ish. If you sort by weight afterward you'll get the best results. For a 1:24 twist barrel, the accuracy is not that bad.

With my suppresor I can load 22.5 grains SWBO and get cycling with a 1oz buffer and the velocity is about 1100. If I go less, sometimes I get one that won't cycle. You can tell when one breaks the sound barrier for whatever reason since it is so close to 1125fps. I think I'm loading them to 2.13, but I'd have to verify.
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