Tumbling loaded ammo THE TEST - Page 2


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Old 07-01-2008, 11:53 PM   #11
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At this point I pulled the bullets and examined the powder. I did not see any broken powder kernels and I did not see any powder residue on the bullets. I may or may not shoot them ammo as I did not see any more damage to it. On the other hand, I did see some powder residue after 8 hours. I would have to say that it is unsafe to tumble loaded ammo. This observation was done only in a vibratory case cleaner and a rotary case cleaner like the RCBS Sidewinder Case Tumbler seen above; could provide different results and could possibly provide more destruction of the powder due to the more violent tumbling used with that method.
A note about safety, I was going to fire these rounds to test for accuracy and if indeed the velocity had changed. But after seeing what was happening to the powder I have made the choice to not fire these rounds and to discard the powder used here by either soaking in water or burning. Would tumbling ammunition loaded with spherical or ball powder hurt it any, well I did see some signs of minor abrasion even in the Winchester 748. While it was not very bad and not even close to what the IMR 4350 was producing I would not tell anyone that it is OK to tumble ammunition loaded with spherical or ball powder. The fact remains that you do not know for sure what is going on inside of your cartridge while it is vibrating in the tumbler. I would have to caution anyone from tumbling loaded ammo. To me there is significant cause to warrant the powder manufactures placing the warning on all powder. I for one will stick to the thought that tumbling loaded ammo is a bad thing to do.



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Old 07-02-2008, 12:24 AM   #12
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Excellent series in the testing cpttango30! Great attention to detail and really good information included.

I agree with, and have agreed with for some time, that tumbling loaded ammo isn't the best option for ultimate accuracy and could lead to detrimental effects. I think this test was very well done and the information is there for the masses to consume and form their own conclusions.

I, for one, recommend this test series be moved to the Knowledge Base as this is an issue that has come up on the internet, and around the gun range, for years now.

Very well done Sir! Thank you for the effort and the time it took to put this together for all of us....

JD



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Old 07-02-2008, 04:43 AM   #13
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Thanks for the kind remarks Dillinger. If you want to move it go right ahead and move it.

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Old 07-02-2008, 05:42 AM   #14
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Nice work, well done and thank you cpttango.

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Old 07-21-2008, 07:50 PM   #15
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Nice thorough research CP! I am one of those that agree with you and the powder manufacturers. The coating on the powder is called "deterrent coating" and there are several chemicals used, one is composed of a chemical called DNT (Dinitrotoluene). They are applied to the kernels of powder in varying degrees to control the burning characteristics of the finished product. Tumbling removes this coating and can boost chamber pressures to beyond safe limits. Removal of case lube should be done after resizing and before priming if tumbling is desired.
Note: Case lube should ALWAYS be removed from case exteriors because residual lube can "raise pressures and bolt thrust to potentially dangerous levels. " (Sierra Rifle Reloading Manual - 4th Edition)



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