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Range Rpt - 8x57 Rem Classic with ANVBs
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Old 04-20-2013, 01:42 PM
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Default Range Rpt - 8x57 Rem Classic with ANVBs

I'm getting ready to hunt bears in Prince William Sound (first week of May, God willin' and the creek don't rise), and I've decided to take the Remington M700 Classic in 8x57 and use the ANVB (Ain't No Varmint Bullet). Hey, if I'm gonna make 'em, I oughtta use 'em.

I also took the relatively new (unfired) Savage .223 bolt gun with some "factory" 55-grain FMJ ammo, and some handloads.

I REALLY have to get the 8x57 1) sighted in, and 2) a reasonable load worked up for the ANVB.

I wanted to use W748 powder, as that gave good velocity and pressure values with a timing node, but when I went to "the cupboard" the cupboard was bare of W748. Of course no one has ANY powder these days because of all of the stupid panic buying. So, I had to use I3031. It actually gave better "paper" numbers than W748, but I have yet to have the ACTUAL performance of I3031 come even CLOSE to what QL says it will do. Nonetheless, I HAVE I3031. I DON'T have w748.

The timing node with a 24" barrel is achieved with something around 50.0 grains of I3031. That yields a paper-whipped MV of 3204 f/s at a max pressure of 49,000 PSI for the 125-grain ANVB. I loaded up 3 rounds of 50.9, 3 with 51.0 and 4 with 51.1 grains. "Normally" I would have used 0.3-grain increments, but I had some faith that this was going to be "close", because I had very precise measurements of the rifle and cases.

Keeping the story short, I decided to go the public range that I have come to seriously dislike. The reasons for going there were that it is approaching "breakup" here, and even those few places on public land that I might consider setting up, there is no chance of that at this time of year. Second, I was kinda in a hurry, and didn't want to fiddle around trying to find a "make do" place to shoot. Third, I needed this session to "work" for getting the rifle sighted in properly and finding a load for the ANVB. I didn't want to 'half-donkey' it and not get conclusive data. So, I ended up at the public range.

Of course it started off on the 'wrong foot', as it always does nowadays at this range. There was something 'going on' with the local cops, and they had most of the range occupied. The good news was, it was nearly 3 o'clock in the afternoon, and they were wrapping up. Secondly, the only range available to me was one in which the minimum range to set a target was 50 yd. If you could see the place you'd see how STUPID that is. Nonetheless, that was 'reality'.

I had not wanted to waste ANVBs in sighting in the scope, so I had loaded up 10 rounds with Hornady 125-grian HPs. I would use those for "getting on paper", then fine tune with ANVBs. Normally, I would start that process at 25 to 35 yd, depending on where the "paper-whipping" said the bullet path crossed the line of sight. Of course, I couldn't set the target short of 50 yd, so that's where I started.

Here is a picture of the target. (I used the same target for all the 8x57 shooting.) In this picture, you can see a tight group, one high hole, and two near the bulls-eye.


You'll see numbers 1 through 6 in the picture. 1,2, and 3 are the first shots after bore-sighting. Number 4 - up at the top left in the number "3" - is the fourth shot BECAUSE I MOVED THE BLASTED SCOPE IN THE WRONG DIRECTION. Number 5 is moving it back, and number 6, down in the red bull, is the last shot at 50 yd.

This group is the next three shots - 7,8, and 9 - at 100 yd, still with the Hornady 125s. Certainly not 'awe inspiring', and a little unexpected based on the 4-shot group at 50 yd seen in the previous picture.


The size of the 50-yd group was 1.607 minutes of an angle. The size of the 100-yd group was 2.943 minutes of an angle. That is ALMOST twice the MOA size. Sumpin' funny going on there. I think they might be "waking up" (as opposed to the "going to sleep" that some people propose bullets do).

Maybe I should make something clear lest someone unfamiliar with what "minute of an angle" really means.

Using the term "minute of an angle" (MOA) standardizes a group's size independent of range. So, the actual size of the group at 50 yd was 0.767 inches. That is 1.607 minutes of an angle. The size is "normalized" with respect to range. Comparing groups sizes in minutes of an angle allows one to disregard the range at which the group was shot. Therefore, if one shoots a 1.607 MOA group at 50 yd, one would expect the same firearm to shoot the same bullet from the same rifle using the same load into the same MOA-SIZED group regardless of the range.

To complete the explanation: NOT compensating for range in this specific example means that the 50-yd group size of 0.767 INCHES "should" have produced a group size IN INCHES, at 100 yd, of approximately 2 times 0.767", or 1.607". You'll note that this is the same number IN MOAs that I reported for the 50-yd group. That's because 1 MOA at 100 yd equals approximately 1 inch - actually 1.047 inches. Therefore, the 100-yd group size in MOA units, is 1.83 (almost twice) as big as the it "should" have been if "something" wasn't "amiss".

So I started shooting the ANVBs hoping 'things' might get better. They didn't.

By the way... the ANVB cartridges were loaded to place the bullet's caliber-diameter-ogive 0.050" off of the lands. Unfortunately, that meant a seating depth of only 0.191". That is only 59% of a caliber. I prefer not to have less than 67% of a caliber of the bullet in the neck of the case. Therefore, I crimped - using Lee's "Factory Crimp" - all of the ANVB cartridges. The Hornady 125 HPs were seated 0.300" deep, which meant that they were approximately 0.110 inches off of the lands. I'll come back to that in my conclusions.

Here is the first group of three of the ANVBs. The charge is 50.9 grains of I3031.


As you can see, it ain't 'pretty'. Group size is 3.102 MOA.

Here is the next 3-shot group. Charge is 51.0 grains of I3031. Group size is 2.133 MOA.


Here's the last 3-shot group of ANVBs. Charge is 51.1 grains of I3031. Group size is 3.656 MOAs.


By the way, the line drawn around the bullet holes includes one of the Hornady 125s, and excludes one of the ANVBs. The hole in the RED bull is the Hornady, the hole slightly lower and left is the ANVB.

So...

As you can imagine, I'm not too happy with this. There are some interesting "things" to note:
1) The ANVB and the Hornady shot similarly-sized groups even though;
-a) They had radically different seating depths, 0.050 and 0.110 off the lands.
-b) They had different charges, 50.0 for the Hornady and 50.9 to 51.1 for the ANVB.

2) The groups I shot several weeks ago at 50 yd at my house using the ANVB from the 8mm SLT were comparable to the 50 yd group of the Hornady yesterday.

3) The Hornady 100yd groups were TWICE as big as they "should" have been based on the 50-yd groups.

Obviously, the "jump" caused by being far off of the lands, isn't having much of an effect on group size. The 8mm Steyr LONG THROAT meant a big "jump", and the 50-yd groups were essentially the same size as these 50-yd groups. Even the difference of about 60 thousandths in the ones shot from the Remington using different bullets produced very similar group sizes at 100 yd.

Here's what I think I am going to do:

1) I'm going to load the ANVBs to 2/3rd of a caliber (0.216") seating depth. This MAY make a difference.
2) I'm going to continue to crimp. I THINK this will make ignition more uniform.
3) I'm going to weigh the jackets before selecting a core weight, and thereby do my best to make the between-bullet-weights as uniform as I can. I DON'T THINK this matters, but I don't like the current variability in weights.
4) Use a different powder than I3031. I've never been able to get that powder to produce small groups. I wouldn't change this if I didn't THINK it WOULD matter.
5) I MAY shoot at 50, 75, 100, and 150 to see if I can figure out what's happening between 50 and 100 yd, AND to see if it is getting worse as the range increases.
6) I will continue to load Hornady 125s just to have a "standard" bullet to compare so that I don't incorrectly think a problem is unique to the ANVB.

I took my chronograph to the range, but I so hate having to "deal with" all the hoohah at the range, I decided not to fiddle with it. I can get chrono data "out behind my garage".

Paul

By the way... The fact that the factory Hornady bullets "opened up" at 100 yd, AND that the 50-yd group with the ANVB out of the 8mm SST is essentially the same size, gives me confidence that the "issue" isn't my hand-made procedures or bullets. Gotta be something else.

Paul
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Last edited by gitano; 04-20-2013 at 02:20 PM..
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8mm, 8x57, anvb, range report, swaging


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