How do you keep track of your load data?


November 28, 2010, 11:53 AM
How do you keep track of your load data? A notebook, excel, specific computer program, or scribbled on little pieces of paper.

I'm going to start a nice specific notebook detailing all of the pertinent info.

I did recently inherit a computer so maybe that's the ticket. What programs are available? I'm not looking for reloading data, just a way to keep track of my own.


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November 28, 2010, 12:09 PM
I use a spiral bound notebook. Computers fail on me all the time. I load for 30+ calibers, and I need all the info. at the loading bench, not in another room.

November 28, 2010, 12:17 PM
I keep it on the computer (with the folder mirrored on two drives) and hardcopy.

I made a form on Word that I use. I hand write the data in a binder as I develop loads, then type them out for long term storage when I got enough handwritten entries.

I still do that for pistol and shotgun.

For rifle I've migrated to Sinclair targets....they have space for load data, and I just throw the targets into a binder for quick reference.

November 28, 2010, 12:19 PM
Excel spread sheet with all my "standard" loads developed over the years.
I guess if the computer crashes, I do have back-up's on CD & also on D drive.

Then if worse came to worser, I could re-type it.
I keep hard copys in my reloading manuals, for referance, as well as on the reloading bench.


November 28, 2010, 12:28 PM
I have a label that I tape to the box of ammo and a label that looks the same that goes in my notebook. When I start reloading for more then one caliber I will have a notebook for each.

November 28, 2010, 12:28 PM
Home made Excel log. I save it in two other places every time I make changes. I also print it out and put it in a three ring binder.

November 28, 2010, 12:43 PM

lots of great solutions in the above link! particularly post 6 (best solution Ive found yet)

I also use a Rolodex to keep track of proven long term pet loads, for my LRPV I intend to have it's own binder filled with targets and load workup data. My ballistic app for my iphone also gets pet load data input into it,

November 28, 2010, 01:01 PM
I use a 3-Ring notebook. One page per load along with an 8 1/2 X 11 target which is often just a 1" "Spot" in the middle of a clean piece of copy paper.

November 28, 2010, 01:51 PM
Lyman reloaders data log. Copies of the pages after it fills up. Punched for 3-ring binder.

November 28, 2010, 02:03 PM
My loads go into small plastic bags with the data on the bag. After I shoot the target, I transfer the data to the paper, with notes about wind direction, temp. time of day , date, sun's angle to the shooter, phase of the moon, and what I had for lunch. The target then goes into a three ring binder.:D

November 28, 2010, 02:14 PM
I use an 8-1/2x11 "lab notebook" with the pages sewn in. I have it divided into sections for each cartridge and use one page per bullet. If I get a new weight or shape, I start a new page. I find this works great for me because most of my reloading is done for CZ pistols... which almost always have special OAL requirements tied to the bullet. So the top 1/3 of each page is bullet dimensions and chamber measurements.

November 28, 2010, 06:36 PM
Quickload for storing load data files.

Ammo goes in ammo cans.
Ammo in ammo cans is in ziplock bags.

Ziplock bags contain label sheet created in MS- Word.
Labels stored on HDD, backed-up on external HDD.

Ammo can gets abbreviated labeling.

November 29, 2010, 12:31 AM
Range report 2009- 08-05 6mmBR Rem700 260Rem M98

I went to Issaquah range.
The wind was calm, but it was packed... on a week day.
The place had been remodeled.
I was there ~ 2:30 to ~ 3:30
Addendum to range report:

I usually do not work on Rem700 actions [I like M98s and Ruger #1s], but
last month I put together some parts:
1) Rem700 22-250 for $180 at gunshow, took off the stock and barrel.
2) Krieger 6mmBRX 1 in 8" twist barrel with Harrell brake $100 at a forum
3) Choate Ultimate Sniper stock $40 at gun show
4) IOR 2.5x10x42, illuminated, second focal plane, MP-8 Dot reticule, 1/2
mil hatch, 1/2 moa target turrets $600 on a forum
5) IOR tactical steel rings came with the scope
6) Harris swivel bi-pod mounted on the rifle, lying around my house
7) B-Square Weaver Bubble Bore Level $14 SWFA
8) EGW Picatinny Rail 1 Piece Scope Mount $40 SWFA
$374 rifle + $600 scope = $974 in materials

I cut off the 3" of shot out throat on the used barrel.
I put a 2365" pin gauge in the bore and dialed in the 4 jaw and the
spider of my PM1236 lathe.
I cut a 6mmBR chamber with my custom .272" neck reamer.
I cut threads, bolt head relief, and a diameter for recoil lug on the
I loaded up some Lapua 6mmBR brass with H335 and 87 gr Vmax moly bullets

It weighs 13.2 pounds with rings
A) Remington short action
Choate ultimate sniper stock with lead filled pistol grip
Krieger 22" 6mmBR bull barrel 1 in 8" twist, with shot out throat
chopped off until a .2365" pin gauge fit the bore tight.
Harrell recoil compensator
IOR tactical steel rings
IOR 2.5x10x42, illuminated, second focal plane, MP-8 Dot reticule, 1/2
mil hatch, 1/2 mill target turrets, scope
B-Square Weaver Bubble Bore Level
I had a Harris swivel bi-pod mounted on the rifle, but I used a medium
DogGoneGood shooting bag and wedge, because of the Choate stock forend

Lapua 6mmBR brass fire formed to 6mmBRX, sold used to me, and I resized
to fit the chamber I cut ~ .007" longer than normal 6mmBR brass.
Win small rifle primers
33 gr H335
*87 gr Vmax moly*
2.290" OAL [jammed into the lands, the bullet will seat that much
further anyway]
Quickload predicts 69,191 psi, 3,161 fps with 2,393 psi start pressure.
Quickload predicts 73,896 psi, 3188 fps with 5,393 psi start pressure.
It is jammed into the lands with a small bullet, so the truth will
likely be somewhere in between.
I did not chronograph, as I forgot to bring the tri pod.

~ 1" 2 shots 50 yards, fouling shots, did not retrieve the target, I
bore sighted to within ~ 4 moa at the range.

1.03" 5 shot group at 100 yards
0.55" 5 shot group at 100 yards
1.14" 5 shot group at 100 yards [would have been 0.34", if not for one
0.96" 5 shot group at 100 yards
1.04" 4 shot group at 100 yards [out of ammo, with 2 rounds left that
would not chamber]
average = 0.94" with the flyer, 0.78" without the flyer.

VZ24 action
260 Rem, 22" Douglas long chambered #3 taper 3 pound barrel
VZ24 stock with barrel channel milled out but no epoxy
Weaver #45 and #46 two piece steel scope mounts with Devcon Steel
under the mounts and Loctite 242 on the threads. Burris Low tactical
rings with 6 screws on the cap and a bolt on the Weaver rail.
IOR 2.5x10x42 scope with MP-8 1/2 mili rad reticule in first focal plane
and moa turrets. Rubber tube extensions on both ends of the scope. Scope
center is 1.9" above bore center.
100 gr Nosler Ballistic Tip moly coated # 26100 bullet moly coated ,
45.0 gr canister IMR4895,
2.940" over all length, almost no insertion of the bullet into the neck,
due to the short bullet and long throat.
Quickload prediction 61,328 psi 3261 fps
chronographs as 3,236 fps

0.99" 3 shot group at 100 yards, still perfectly sighted in on third
trip to the range.

What did I learn?
A) The 260 will shoot well when the Copper is cleaned out. It stays
sighted in.
B) The IOR scope I bought yesterday has a very different line width on
the reticle.
C) I confirmed my convictions that heavy guns and light bullets on
windless days make small groups.

The Sinclair bullet comparator on granite surface plate show with the
shoulder of the case in the 30 cal bullet ogive hole:
2.180" resized RP brass from Sav 99
2.195" virgin Lapua brass
2.204" fired brass from Rem700.

What does it all mean?
I made the Rem700 .008" too deep.
I resized the RP brass .015" too short.

Tim the student
November 29, 2010, 12:49 AM
I use a homemade excell spreadsheet. I don't save it to a computer, but I print it out and hand write the info in. I keep all of those in my 3 ring binder.

November 29, 2010, 08:08 AM
I use three ring binders with tabs for each cartridge. I use home made data sheets to record data with different sheets for load info, velocity info and groups. Lot numbers keep references tied between pages. Sheets were originally hand drawn and photo copied, now on done on a CAD system and photo copied.

The loose leaf binders allows me to add sheets for notes and other cartridge specific information with the load data.

November 29, 2010, 08:15 AM
computer log and baggies with spent brass (with load data & group size)

November 29, 2010, 09:08 AM
I keep a running log on a Google-docs spreadsheet.

Free, reliable, and I can view, update, or makes notes from anywhere. It won't matter if my house burns, and my HDD's crash. The data will persist.

November 29, 2010, 10:47 AM
50 years ago I bought a recipe card box and a package of 3"X5" cards. Labeled "A" 38 Special and so on up the list as I loaded more cartridges. The system still works for me. I keep all the cards with the notes from tests. I've traded away guns and then got another like it so the card file gave me good starting points without having to start from scratch. The system also keeps me from repeating mistakes.
I've got about 20 of the files now and refer back every once in a while.
Works for me!!!!!!!!!

November 29, 2010, 01:31 PM
If you do a search on this forum there is a thread called Reloaders Resource there is a nice free downloadable access database program that has load data, allows you to enter your own data, firearm manuals, a area to put pics and info on your guns and printable targets.

November 30, 2010, 01:40 AM
I use a book for load data and a spreadsheet. I print out range sheets and when they are filled I put them in a binder too. I also use sheets of paper.. I'm a mess!!!

November 30, 2010, 12:41 PM
I started designing power supplies with Lotus 123 spread sheet in 1988.
I put 500 hours into designing a spread sheet that would predict the stress on each of the 3,000 component parts of a power supply that goes into a European fighter jet.

In 2007 I used a spread sheet to calculate the accuracy loss at each component of a current monitoring system in the engine starter of an American private jet design.

In 1999 I started handloading and immediately started using EXCEL to keep track of all the bullets and powders, and powder charges used in 9mm overload experiments.

I soon abandoned the spread sheet system for reloading.

I now reload; 19 Badger,.222, .223, 22-250, 6mmBR, .243, 25acp, 25/35, 250/3000, 257 Robert Ackley Improved, 260Rem, 6.5x55, 270, 7x57mm, 7mm Rem mag, 32acp, 32sw, 32S&WLong, 32-20, 7.62x25mm, 30-30, 303Sav, 300Sav, 7.62x39mm, 308, 7.5Swiss, 30-06, 300WM, 303Brit,7.62x54R, 8x57mm, 338WM, .380, 9x19mm, 9x23mm, 357 Sig, 38 sp, 357 mag, 38sw, 40sw, 10mm, 10.4mm, 401 power mag, 44mag, 45acp, 45Colt, .410, 45/70, and 12 ga.

The system I now use is the narrative description of the range report.
I want descriptions of the gun, the target, the wind, and the effect on the brass.

There are too many aspects to fit in the spread sheet format.

November 30, 2010, 12:53 PM
I've tried all kinds of methods but the one that works is a small rain-proof notebook I keep with me. I record the range observations and load data along with wind and other basic conditions. Over time this gives me a good idea of what's working and what isn't. I only put the "keeper" loads in my big bound book. I then code the keepers and mark the code on the cartridges with a sharpie. For example, a certain load with the .450 Marlin is marked as two lines on the back of the cartridge like "II" So if one goes astray (the always seem to) I'll know what the heck it is. Others are marked with triangles, waves, etc. which correspond to a certain "keeper" load.

November 30, 2010, 01:05 PM
I store a piece of cardstock with the OAL, powder charge, bullet weight, primer, brass, # times loaded... ETC inside the baggie where i store my ammo. I'm way to cheap for even plastic cartridge carriers.

November 30, 2010, 01:12 PM
I use the back of my Lyman's 49th for 9mm,.380, .40 S&W, .223 and .45 LC.

When I get more calibers I will transfer the data to a notebook.

November 30, 2010, 02:08 PM
I don't keep a log, but I do use a label I print out in Word on some Avery label stock and attach each label to each box of ammo I create.

I confess to not being terribly interested in 'experimenting' or working up loads. I shoot mostly plated using Win 231/HP-38 for indoor range target practice, low-mid jacketed data. They all go bang and achieve my goal of MOD (Minute of Dead) accuracy at realistic SD distances (under 25 feet).

December 1, 2010, 09:48 PM
I number each of my boxes i put my reloads in, then I use that number to referance back to a manual spread sheet which is a page for each cal. Once I shoot all the ammo in that box, i cross out the line on the spread sheet with a red pencil, but can still read the info. then I reuse the number. When I shoot the ammo, i use the same number of the box to mark my targets, so when I can get home I can transfer the target data to the spread sheet.

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