Actually, I do not see where I introduced a second variable in my experiment, as I have avoided annealing for the last couple of cycles, so at least 1000 rounds, if not more. This weekend, the only variable that changed was the barrel, and it was a huge change.
As for your question about neck tension, you are absolutely correct in stating that it's a very difficult variable to measure. Some of the folks are using hydraulic seaters that measure pressure. I think that's a measure too far for me. The way I presented it to the group recently is that it's important to have a good tension but the difference between requiring 20PSI to push the bullet out or 40PSI is mouse nuts when you figure the pressure pushing the bullet is above 60,000 PSI. I know some of the guys on the Australian team use .005 or more of neck tension and load to astronomical pressures. They use up the case in one single firing. They do very well, sometimes. I have increased my neck tension in 2017, I think it was. I now use .003 and considering going one more to .004.
Never forget that in F-Class, velocity is highly prized and we are always looking for the next accuracy node. You surely can have accuracy and good brass life, but that will be at more sane pressure compared to some of the stuff we produce.
I have not given up on annealing, but for now, I'm relegating it to the side.
|Knows too little |
about too much
TL Davis: “The Second Amendment is special, not because it protects guns, but because its violation signals a government with the intention to oppress its people…”
A couple of updates.
I continue to bypass my annealer but one thing that I decided to check was how much work my regimen was giving to my brass.
My match rifle has an extremely thigh chamber and freebore, and while I do not turn my brass, I only ever use Lapua brass in it. So, I pulled out my case guage for .308 Winchester and slipped in my newest (7 times fired) loaded cartridge. It slipped in just fine. Then just for kicks, I slipped in a 7 times fired, and not yet resized piece of brass. It slipped in all the way with the slightest of pressure at the end.
Even my fired brass fits into a guage. That's how little the neck is worked in this rifle. And resizing without an expander ball means, very little work during sizing. This is why I don't think I'm getting any benefit from the annealer at this point. The cases are getting ready to be dumped as the primer pockets are becoming a little loose. It's not surprise seeing my load is a couple of grains over book max.
In other news, I have been using the Autothrow along with the AutoTrickler in my powder measuring and yesterday, I had another session when I loaded 100 rounds with that setup. It went extremely well, it was quick and on point. I added a 3 foot by 3 foot plastic shield in front of the scale to ward off the A/C and the walking around and that was the best $4 I spent.
I ordered the V3 upgrade for the AutoTrickler and AutoThrow from Adam. Delivery should be some time next week. One of the new features is the ability to set the target weight from you smartphone via Bluetooth. That will make me happy. Also, the new stand for the trickler will allow for better control of the dispensing.
More info when it comes in.
So this weekend we had a 1000 yard match with eTargets. One of the side benefits of using electronic targets is that you get an idea of the velocity of the bullet at the target.
Looking at my strings, I see that my bullets are coming in right around 1460FPS on average, right where JBM says they should be and more interestingly, the SD of my bullets terminal velocity is in the single digits. That is very satisfying; shows that my handloading is adequate and my bullet preparation (pointing) is paying off.
I ordered the V3 upgrade kit from Adam when it was first announced in May. I received my package earlier this month and installed it on my A&D scale.
The stuff is solid. I love how you can set your target weight via an app on your smartphone/tablet that communicates with the electronics in the scale via Bluetooth. I used the setup to load a quick ladder test consisting of 6 different loads. It was quick, easy and painless.
After the test was done, I loaded up 70 cartridges with the selected load and the V3 Autothrow/Autotrickler dispensed a charge, to the kernel, every 10-12 seconds automatically. This is absolutely great. I used to dread the powder measuring process, and now, it's a lot of fun. (Yes, "fun", I am strange.)
I'm very impressed by how so much more efficiently I can process my brass and produce world-class match ammo compared to how I started handloading, 38 years ago.
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