Tech

Reloading: Is There Such A Thing As Too Much Precision? – Sin City Precision

by on 10/19/2016
 

Originally published by Sin City Precision on Aug 2nd, 2016.

The Story:

One of the best things since I became part of the crew here at Sin City Precision is getting together and shooting the breeze with the other folks about all things precision shooting. We have not always seen eye to eye on the best way to attack a course of fire, what reticle is the best, who makes the best glass bar-none, the best bullet, and one item where no one seems to agree on is best reloading practices.

Yes that’s right, the black art of reloading. Being an experimental physicist turned Good Will Hunting, there is still a part of me that needs scientific evidence on why something is so much better than something else. With everyone having their own method, order of operation, magic case prep sizing lube, etc… there is hardly ever a time when you can directly compare between two reloaders and make quantitative comparisons.

I acquired a RCBS Chargemaster and compared to my previous method of dropping a load and trickling powder charge by hand on a $30 generic jewelers scale I bought off EBAY, this thing was amazing as far as I was concerned. It was so much easier and I could get things done so much faster. I thought I was all that and a bag of chips, there was no way I would ever need anything better.

PC: APT

PC: APT

So let’s set the “wayback” machine to a time when hanging out with some of the crew doing Cerakote work on some rigs. While waiting for the paint to dry and enjoying some adult beverages, the discussion about the “Prometheus Killer” came up. The “Prometheus Killer” was actually a V2 by Automatic Powder Trickler. Now I am all for the best whizz bang widget to get the job done, but with all the variance possible in the brass itself – between annealing, neck tension, wall thickness, trim length, concentricity, primer pocket fitment, bullet jump, as well as between primers and kernels of powder – I was not convinced that measuring powder charge down to the kernel was going to be a measurable variance or even remotely necessary to have some great hand loads.

A month or so later, someone in the club acquired one of these “Prometheus Killers” and I wound up doing a little troubleshooting to get the thing working properly with his quite impressive lab grade scale (an A&D FX-120i). Looking at the scale it reminded me of the quality equipment I used to use for research. I just thought to myself, “self… this is complete overkill for slinging some lead down range when there are so many other external factors.” With that said, the science guy started working in my wee brain and I was determined to do a test to see if having all that precision in dropping a powder charge into a bunch of different tubes of brass, each using a piece of copper and lead to cork it off was really necessary or was this super precise charge weight just some placebo making people think their hand loads were amazing thereby making them have the confidence to shoot better.

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