.223/5.56 reloading question - Page 2
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Old 06-25-2013, 05:47 AM   #11
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Ok, this .223 vs 5.56 case capacity debate got me interested, so I tried it out for myself.

I tested 2 pieces of .223, and 2 pieces of 5.56. I rand them through a sizing die, then filled them to the brim with IMR 4320, here's my results.

Hornady .223 - 28.3 gr capacity
Hornady .223 - 27.95 gr capacity
Lake City 5.56 - 28.4 gr capacity
Lake City 5.56 - 28.2 gr capacity

It's possible the powder settled down more in some of these then others, but from what I see, their pretty close in capacity.

I'll probably test a few more casings later to get a better average.

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Old 06-25-2013, 05:51 AM   #12
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BTW, I can't seem to find a good .223 recipe for what I'm using. I'm using IMR 4320 and a Barnes 55 gr JHP FB bullet. The closest thing to a JHP FB bullet I could find was data for a Barnes 55 gr TSX FB. That recipe called for 22.1 gr of powder. Does that sound like a good starting load? These rounds will be used mainly in my AR.

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Old 06-26-2013, 08:31 AM   #13
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When testing case capacity accurately you should do the following.

The internal case volume has to be established by weighing empty once fired cartridge cases from a production lot then filling the cases with fresh or distilled water (H2O) up to the point of overflowing and weighing the water filled cases. The added weight of the water is then used to establish the liquid volume and hence the case capacity. This liquid volume measurement method can be practically employed to about a 0.01 to 0.02 ml or 0.15 to 0.30 grains of water precision level for fire arms cartridge cases. A case capacity establishment should best be done by measuring several fired cases from a particular production lot and calculating their average case capacity. This also provides insight in the uniformity of the sampled lot.

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BTW, I can't seem to find a good .223 recipe for what I'm using. I'm using IMR 4320 and a Barnes 55 gr JHP FB bullet. The closest thing to a JHP FB bullet I could find was data for a Barnes 55 gr TSX FB. That recipe called for 22.1 gr of powder. Does that sound like a good starting load? These rounds will be used mainly in my AR.
When data for a specific bullet is not available it is safe to use data of same weight bullet of similar construction. Similar construction are the key words here.
Your Barnes 55gr JHP is a cup-n-core bullet, that means it has a soft lead core with a copper jacket. Your Barns TSX is a Solid copper bullet, no lead and no jacket. These two bullets do not fall under the guidelines of "Similar Construction" and data should not be swapped.

Hodgdon has the load data you need. Use their data for 55gr SPR-SP and IMR 4320. SPR-SP stands for Speer Spire Point, which is a bullet of similar construction to your Barns FMJ. They are both cup-n-core bullets and data is interchangeable as long as you , Start low and Work Up.

http://data.hodgdon.com/cartridge_load.asp
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Old 06-26-2013, 01:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texaswoodworker View Post
BTW, I can't seem to find a good .223 recipe for what I'm using. I'm using IMR 4320 and a Barnes 55 gr JHP FB bullet. The closest thing to a JHP FB bullet I could find was data for a Barnes 55 gr TSX FB. That recipe called for 22.1 gr of powder. Does that sound like a good starting load? These rounds will be used mainly in my AR.
Barrel length may play a factor as well. Shorter barrels may like a fast burning powder. I have good luck with Reloader 7 & 10, also Varmint, H335, AA2015 and BR 8202.
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Old 06-26-2013, 01:27 PM   #15
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Barrel length may play a factor as well. Shorter barrels may like a fast burning powder. I have good luck with Reloader 7 & 10, also Varmint, H335, AA2015 and BR 8202.
As all the powder that is going to burn is burned up in the chamber and the first few inches of the bore, the powder that gives the highest velocity in a long barrel will also give the highest velocity in a shorter barrel.
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Old 06-26-2013, 01:59 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texaswoodworker View Post
Ok, this .223 vs 5.56 case capacity debate got me interested, so I tried it out for myself.

I tested 2 pieces of .223, and 2 pieces of 5.56. I rand them through a sizing die, then filled them to the brim with IMR 4320, here's my results.

Hornady .223 - 28.3 gr capacity
Hornady .223 - 27.95 gr capacity
Lake City 5.56 - 28.4 gr capacity
Lake City 5.56 - 28.2 gr capacity

It's possible the powder settled down more in some of these then others, but from what I see, their pretty close in capacity.

I'll probably test a few more casings later to get a better average.
use water

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Originally Posted by mseric View Post
When testing case capacity accurately you should do the following.

The internal case volume has to be established by weighing empty once fired cartridge cases from a production lot then filling the cases with fresh or distilled water (H2O) up to the point of overflowing and weighing the water filled cases. The added weight of the water is then used to establish the liquid volume and hence the case capacity. This liquid volume measurement method can be practically employed to about a 0.01 to 0.02 ml or 0.15 to 0.30 grains of water precision level for fire arms cartridge cases. A case capacity establishment should best be done by measuring several fired cases from a particular production lot and calculating their average case capacity. This also provides insight in the uniformity of the sampled lot.



When data for a specific bullet is not available it is safe to use data of same weight bullet of similar construction. Similar construction are the key words here.
Your Barnes 55gr JHP is a cup-n-core bullet, that means it has a soft lead core with a copper jacket. Your Barns TSX is a Solid copper bullet, no lead and no jacket. These two bullets do not fall under the guidelines of "Similar Construction" and data should not be swapped.

Hodgdon has the load data you need. Use their data for 55gr SPR-SP and IMR 4320. SPR-SP stands for Speer Spire Point, which is a bullet of similar construction to your Barns FMJ. They are both cup-n-core bullets and data is interchangeable as long as you , Start low and Work Up.

http://data.hodgdon.com/cartridge_load.asp
thats ok if all guns had the same size chambers... after firing the inside volume of a case will vary ever so slightly from gun to gun due to varied chamber volumes. thats why you cant use fire formed brass in different guns other than the one its fire formed in. thats what hogden and powder companies do in test barrels that have EXACTLY measured test chambers. this doesnt translate directly to production firearms.

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As all the powder that is going to burn is burned up in the chamber and the first few inches of the bore,
not true. you can see the difference in barrels as long as 16" and 20" in 556/223. take your flash hider off fire a shot at nite from a 16" barrel and same thing with a 20" barrel there will be much more flash of burning powder from a 16" barrel and almost none from a 20".

something has to be happening to the powder in that extra 4" of barrel.

all the powder that is going to burn is ignited in the first few inches and continues to burn and produce gasses as the bullet moves down the barrel. thats where burn speed matters if your trying to find an efficient powder. you want the burn rate to equal the time the bullet spends in the barrel. thats where the confusion comes in when talking about this issue.

the powder isnt burned up in a few inches its ignited in the case and chamber and throat and continues to burn as the volume increases from the base of the case to the base of the bullet as the bullet moves forward.
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Old 06-26-2013, 02:10 PM   #17
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Not true. Muzzle flash is the result of the gasses that were created by the "burned" powder igniting when they exit the muzzle and enter an oxygen rich environment not burning powder.

http://www.navweaps.com/index_tech/tech-090.htm

From John Barsness of Handloader Magazine.

Muxxle flash is caused by hot gases reigniting when they hit the atmosphere, but unburned powder. At least 99% of the powder is burned in the first few inches of any centerfire rifle barrel

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Old 06-26-2013, 09:35 PM   #18
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Ok, I measured them again (with water). All of the cases were run through a full length sizing die since they came from different guns. Here's my results.

PMC .223

29.10 gr
29.55 gr
29.00 gr
29.30 gr
29.20 gr

Average - 29.23 gr

PSD 5.56

28.75 gr
29.15 gr
28.90 gr
29.40 gr
29.30 gr

Average - 29.10 gr

WWC (Winchester) 5.56

29.45 gr
29.30 gr
29.40 gr
29.20 gr
29.65 gr

Average - 29.4 gr

Lake City 5.56

29.70 gr
29.75 gr
29.50 gr
29.50 gr
29.95 gr

Average - 29.68 gr

Hornady .223

29.95 gr
29.70 gr
30.60 gr
30.60 gr
29.95 gr

Average - 30.16 gr

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Old 06-26-2013, 11:20 PM   #19
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Thanks for sharing. As you have found, Military brass does not have less case capacity and reducing the charge is not necessary.
You have done what many handloaders have done and busted the 223-5.56 Myth. Good Job!

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Old 06-28-2013, 02:23 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mseric View Post
Not true. Muzzle flash is the result of the gasses that were created by the "burned" powder igniting when they exit the muzzle and enter an oxygen rich environment not burning powder.

http://www.navweaps.com/index_tech/tech-090.htm

From John Barsness of Handloader Magazine.

Muxxle flash is caused by hot gases reigniting when they hit the atmosphere, but unburned powder. At least 99% of the powder is burned in the first few inches of any centerfire rifle barrel
This says nothing about burn rates and the % of powder burned from a specific powder, the article speaks in general terms. It's an interesting article but barrel length and powder do make a difference otherwise they would not publish so many manuals and load recipes. Nosler manuals will list most accurate powder for bullet weight and specific barrel length, water weight of the case capacity, COL.
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