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Picked up a Ruger Hawkeye Compact for the grandkid.

I’m finding plenty of recipes that are geared towards full length barrels. Is there a rule of thumb concerning such short barrels, 16” in this case. RL-15 shows 2800 to RL-19 showing 2900 for instance.

I’m guessing the slower powder would not work as well in such a short barrel, but I don’t know that.


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Posts: 4761 | Location: southern Mn | Registered: February 26, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You can expect about 30-50 FPS loss of velocity per inch of barrel length. You would need to chronograph the exact load if you want more precise numbers. But I doubt any deer-sized animal will know the difference between a 2800 FPS load and a 2600 FPS load, especially since the difference between the two velocities gets less the longer the range. I actually load my 30-06 down to about 2600 FPS with a 165 gr Nosler Ballistic tip for mild, comfortable shooting, and the last five deer didn’t know they were hit with a slower bullet. We often give too much credit to the last few FPS of velocity. Just sight in for the load, and go fill the freezer!


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Posts: 328 | Location: St. Louis, MO | Registered: June 15, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If efficiency is your primary concern (as it is mine) then always try out a heavy for caliber bullet to see if it shoots well.

The powder charge has to be smaller to keep the pressure safe, so there is less to burn. I have had great luck with this most of the time. Even better if a faster burning powder works well too.

As an aside, expect that your POI may move upward a tad since the bullet has a longer dwell time inside the barrel and recoil affects it that much more.
 
Posts: 6594 | Registered: May 12, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I’d start with a powder in the Varget range & a 139/140 grain bullet. My next look would be a 120 grain bullet.
 
Posts: 4447 | Location: WI | Registered: February 29, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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