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#12150615 - 07/16/17 Whoops (Chapter 2) !!!  
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NTG Offline
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I recently bought a 2nd 22-250 (a RARP) so that I'd have enough guns for hunting bunnies and yotes with my growin-too-fast boys. I've been reloading for ~10 years, but until recently I've always used my Dad-in-law's or my buddy's RCBS Charge-master. With a new job that takes a lot more of my time, I thought I'd get a scale and the few things I lacked to load in my basement vs. taking time to travel to their houses.

Fast forward to yesterday. I got some chores done and wanted to do some load work on the new 22-250. Last load I wanted to try was the combo of I4895 and Speer 55 SP. Someone had told me I4895 had done real well in theirs, I had some, and never tried in in my other 22-250. I didn't have time to run the whole gamut from bottom to max load (and really wanted to focus on some temp resistant powders like varget anyway) so I only ran a few in the middle of the range. The third round of the 35.5gr load sounded a bit different, and I thought well it's hot out (~95F) and the barrel is quite warm, and then I tried to open the bolt...and it took all the muscle I have (not a lot, really blush) to get it open. I had blown the primer!

Had a BBQ with friends last night so I really didn't get a chance to research this until tonight. I first started reading about the temp sensitivity of I4895, and didn't think there was enough variance to blow a primer (note that this load is a whole grain below Hodgdon's max). Then started looking in to seeing actual reports of this combo, and didn't find much. Then I just started trying to research what had caused others to blow a primer and came upon a thread from Dirtfarmer, titled "Whoops....." (April 2015). His scale had a problem with the weight jumping a notch. I then recalled that I didn't fire all the rounds I'd made for this load (who would after blowing a primer?). So I pulled a bullet, and tested the scale, and sure enough that load had been 40.5 grains!!! shocked

The Herters MS4 magnetic scale I'd bought second-hand some light wear on the beam in the lower gradients, but I'd never even thought that the weight would jump as it hit after removing the pan.

I share this as a reminder to be aware of, and double check what you're doing all the time.

I am curious of what pressure this load was running at, if anyone wants to run it through quickload (using 210s, win brass)...yea...it'll probably scare me again, but that's o.k.

Also, should I be concerned about the chamber, have it inspected?

If interested, the primer pocket was blown to .224. The lower section of the web is at .469, and most new brass is measuring about .466. Any input, critique, etc is welcome. I don't want to get anywhere near this experience again. Thanks in advance.

AIH 300 BP 2
#12150763 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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agazain Offline
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"I didn't have time to run the whole gamut"...
There ya go, and it IS rocket science.


Oops! Forgot to log in. There, that's better.
#12150792 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Ok... Running the starting charge and then up in increments wouldn't have mattered based on the cause of this "woops"... Even at the min charge the weight hoping on me would have given me 39gr, which is 2.5 gr over max. But, I'm here to learn so keep the input coming.

#12152049 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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NTG Offline
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I'd welcome any other input/help on this. Thanks.

#12152133 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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denton Offline
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Seriously zippy load: Taking the QL defaults, it's just shy of 90 KPSI. Primers tend to fall out about 80 KPSI.


It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong. Richard P. Feynman
#12152226 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Mule Deer Online content
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Had one similar whoops a number of years ago, one reason I've been very careful about checking the scale ever since! Have also seen some errors in electronic scales, so it isn't unique to balances.

Oddly enough the whoops I had didn't show ANY signs of high pressure for the first shot--other than a very high chronograph reading. The chronograph I was using sometimes gave screwy readings in bright light, but the second shot blew a primer, and only then did I suspect something might be wrong. The rifle was a Ruger No. 1, which proved very resistant to gas blow-back--but also opened with relatively little effort, contrary to what we often hear about No. 1's.

I replaced that chronograph soon afterward, but have seen plenty of problems with those belonging to others. Also oddly, for a long while it was probably the best-selling chronograph on the market, and may still be, since it's once of the least expensive. Many people have had fine results from them--including me, until they went screwy. Yes, "they," because I owned three before finally giving up.


John

"Gunwriters, as you know, aren't as informed as their readers are and if it wasn't for the readers, there would be no need for writers..."--Shrapnel, May 2015
#12152311 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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22250rem Offline
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Stuff can happen........ I'm usually using a Lyman 1200 DPS 3 digital powder system but keep my old Lyman balance beam scale close by and set for the same weight as the digital unit is dispensing. The other day I was doing 82.0 gr. RL-19 charges for my buddies 300 Weatherby...... Occasionally double checked one with the balance beam after the digital said it was 82.0 just for my own peace of mind. Digitals sometimes can "wander" and do other funny stuff. Having some check weights is also a good idea.

#12152700 - 07/17/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Thanks everyone. Mule Deer, or anyone, I thought I read once that Ruger proof tested all their actions to 150% of the pressure spec. I can't seem to find that now. Any truth to that?

Also, do you think it's ok to shoot, or should it have it inspected?

Thanks again.

Last edited by NTG; 07/17/17.
#12152818 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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MILES58 Offline
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About four years ago I had a similar incident with a scale of similar construction but different manufacture. I was working up loads and one of them took a little extra trickling to come up to weight. Instead of dumping it back into the measure and throwing another charge I poured it into the waiting case. I do not know how far over it was, but I wrecked the end of the bolt. The bolt opened hard, but not pound it open hard. I did not have the Chrony set up, which is extremely unusual for me. It was the third round fired and was only 1/2 inch out of the group and high.

The cause was a little dust in the pivot. The scale had been left uncovered in a dusty area. Well, actually, the cause was compound operator error. I left the scale uncovered in an area with enough dust and I ignored the need for more trickling than usual. Your Herters scale is actually a Redding OEM and one of the better (IMO) available balance beam scales. Take a soft tooth brush and clean the serrations on top of the beam with alcohol and clean the pivots (beam and body) and it will be good to go. Keep known bullets (for low weights use #4 buck) with the scale as check weights. I use #4 shot, #2 shot, #4buck, 32 grain hornet bullets, 45 grain bullets, 55 grain bullets and 80 grain bullets to check what the scale tells me about powder. To check the scale at bullets weights I just compare to bullets out of a different box. Every now and then you get a bullet(s) that makes you go Hmmm. Probably comes from people opening a box in the store and putting a bullet into the wrong box.

Accidents like these are why you develop habits when you load and you pay attention when something breaks the pattern/rhythm. I have loaded virtually all of my own ammo since 1956. I was taught to set the measure up for the charge, throw the charge bump the handle on the knocker twice as I drop the charge into the scale pan, and trickle up to weight on the scale. Pour the charge into the case, seat the bullet and repeat. To this day I get nervous throwing charges directly into the case even though I have tested my measures many times and I know it is safe. I have never charged a loading block full of cases and then moved on to seating bullets. I'd probably have the twitches for days if I ever did that.

An absolutely consistent pattern loading would have prevented your whoops and mine. It will serve you well because when you get the feeling something was different your only option should be to pull the bullet and start over. Back when I started loading, things were more crude, loading manuals were not infrequently off in what was safe, how fast t was going, and you had almost no way short of firing the load to check up on it. Nobody had a chrony. Like me, you made two mistakes and didn't catch either one.

#12153025 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: MILES58]  
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mathman Online content
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I'd have the twitches if I had to weigh charges for a loading block full.

#12153230 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Before seating bullets, look very carefully with a bright light down into the top of the open cases. You would probably have been able to see the difference in the charge fill in those cases. If they all look exactly the same, then you know you haven't overcharged any of them.

#12153346 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Mule Deer Online content
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NTG,

Most "proof" loads are around 150% of standard pressure loads.


John

"Gunwriters, as you know, aren't as informed as their readers are and if it wasn't for the readers, there would be no need for writers..."--Shrapnel, May 2015
#12153349 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: DakotaDeer]  
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Mule Deer Online content
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Mule Deer  Online Content
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DakotaDeer,

That works--unless ALL of 'em are overloads!


John

"Gunwriters, as you know, aren't as informed as their readers are and if it wasn't for the readers, there would be no need for writers..."--Shrapnel, May 2015
#12153400 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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MILES58 Offline
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It's just they way I grew up and was a lot more necessary back then. Habits keep you safe. Habits die hard. The best I've been able to do breaking habits like this is to charges cases directly out of the measure and only weigh every tenth one when I am doing a bunch like .223s. Any deer hunting loads or anything less than maybe 100 rounds are 100% weighed and trickled up to weight. That was just dogma in the church I grew up in. Knowing it's safe and that the measures are all very consistent will never override the training and habit.

#12153441 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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agazain Offline
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Add "Hurry" to the list of things that don't go with Handloading -- alcohol, prescription drugs, fire, distractions/diversions, etc. Safety first, and glad you are not defensive about the goof.

Barry


Oops! Forgot to log in. There, that's better.
#12153467 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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Allen917 Offline
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I've had my scales jump a notch or two while sitting on the reloading bench. Also my powder measure would pack in extra powder if there was a lot of activity on the bench. To avoid that, I built a sturdy little side table that is not attached to my loading bench, to mount my powder measures and scales on. It's worked well for me.


My biggest fear is when I die my wife will sell my guns for what I told her they cost....
#12154442 - 07/18/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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NTG Offline
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My thanks to you all! No one has answered my "go ahead and shoot the rifle again or have it inspected first" question. Any input on that?

#12154752 - 07/19/17 Re: Whoops (Chapter 2) !!! [Re: NTG]  
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MILES58 Offline
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MILES58  Offline
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Were it my rifle, I would carefully examine the bolt face and lugs. Any cracks or distortion is cause for replacement. I would mic the end of the bolt. If the bolt body is smaller than the end, replace. I would also run some go-no-go gauges into the chamber. If it's new bolt time, or if the no-go fits, unless you know what you're doing, it's time for a good gunsmith to give it a thorough check over. In the case of my Whoops, My bolt face was a little messed up and the extractor was wrecked. It cost me the price of two bolts off ebay and the time to borrow the right go-no-go gauges from a friend.


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