Omega .50 cal load - finally!


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redbone
November 10, 2006, 10:43 AM
I bought a T/C Omega a couple of years ago, and have been searching for the mythical MOA load ever since. And, I might add, with disappointing results. I've tried conicals, Powerbelts, and a variety of sabot loads. None of these worked out very well for me as far as accuracy goes. I was able to get 3-4 MOA, which was fine for hunting (I've taken four whitetails with the Omega so far), but I was never pleased with that accuracy. A couple of months ago I tried the T/C Shockwave 250 grain bullet, and it was somewhat better.

I should add that I have been determined to find a bullet that works well with two 50 grain 777 pellets. Last summer I explored American Pioneer loose powder, in an attempt to work up a load for the Hornady XTP sabots, but finally gave up on that and went back to my old standby, two 777 pellets. I also briefly experimented with three 777 pellets, but didn't see any accuracy advantage with the XTPs, so I gave up on that also. Mostly what I saw was a lot more smoke coming out of the muzzle with three pellets.

Well, yesterday I finally made it back out to the range with a box of T/C Shockwave 200 grain sabots. Wahoo! At 100 yards, I'm getting 1.25 inch groups, just me shooting off a bench with no rest (in other words, some of the group is due to my wobble, so I'm guessing that it would be slifghtly sub-MOA from a decent rest). With an impact point about 2.75 inches high at 100 yards, it's right at 10 inches low at 200 yards.

Interestingly, the bullets are 0.399 inches in diameter, a departure from the more typical .44 or .45 sabot bullets for a .50 muzzleloader,

I plugged this info in the Point Blank calculator, and assumed a muzzle velocity of 1925 fps, based on some velocity info on the 777 website. Then I played with the ballistic coefficient until the trajectory matched my range data. Seems like a B.C. of 0.13 and a zero of 142 yards is a pretty close match to what I saw at the range. Temp was 60 degrees F, and altitude is 665 ft MSL. So much for that advertised "higher ballistic coefficient"!

Point Blank tells me this load will have a velocity of 1424 fps at 100 yards and 1093 fps at 200 yards, with energies at those ranges of 901 and 530 ft-lbs, respectively.

At 200 yards I was getting 3-inch groups, so the load is plenty accurate to that distance, although a bit low on power. I'm also a bit concerned about terminal ballistics at 200 yards - don't know if 1093 fps will be enough for good expansion. That's all pretty academic, anyway, since I rarely get a shot over 75 to 100 yards here in southern Indiana, so I'll be getting at least 1500 fps when it counts.

Deer season opens next weekend!

Anyone else had any experience with the 200 garin Shockwaves, especially on whitetails? Good expansion?

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arcticap
November 10, 2006, 02:59 PM
I load a 225 grain lead hollowpoint Buffalo Bullet/sabot combo. but haven't shot a deer with it so I don't know about how it would expand.
I did recover a .20 gauge Winchester/BRI lead shotgun sabot slug from a deer that began as .40 caliber and expanded to ~.64 caliber at about 25-30 yards:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=19761&d=1154981359

http://thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=19760&d=1154981284

However, I did find this review from Cabela's that gives a negative opinion about the heavier Shockwaves:

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/reviews.jsp?productid=215941

Other reviews rave about the fact that this [similar?] Superglide Shockwave bullet holds together so well and that they have great accuracy:

http://www.basspro.com/servlet/catalog.TextId?hvarTextId=82231&hvarTarget=search&cmCat=SearchResults

The TC Shockwave bullets do seem to be awfully accurate, but if it's expansion that you are looking for, maybe a lead bullet of a similiar weight would shoot fairly accurately and provide more expansion potential too.

If your looking to continue to try out different bullets, this outfit may let you mix and match sample amounts of various lead bullets:

http://blackjackhill.com/zencart/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=1_6

Here's an interesting .40 caliber lead bullet:

http://www.prbullet.com/40.htm
http://www.prbullet.com/

For big game: http://www.prbullet.com/uls.htm

hossdaniels
November 10, 2006, 03:34 PM
My Knight loves 250 grain hornady sst's with 2 pellets of 777. I can get under 1.25"@100yds on a regular basis. It hates xtp's and powerbelt's, and any more powder than that. That thing shoots better than most centerfires i've seen.

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