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Ran my 1st ladder test the other day....

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by BsChoy, Jan 11, 2008.

  1. BsChoy

    BsChoy Well-Known Member

    I took out my Stevens iin 223 with some 68gr horn bthp I had worked up over different weights of H4895. And to my utter amazement it worked just like the guys online said it would. Shots 3,5,7 all landed in practically the same hole. While 2,4,6 landed in a close group but seperate spot on the target. Shots 1 and 9 were completely seperate of the rest and each other. Now if I take this information and apply what I read I should go with the same powder charge that was used for shot 5 and change the oal as necessary right?
  2. nicholst55

    nicholst55 Well-Known Member

    That's my understanding of it, although I must confess I have yet to try this myself.
  3. John4me05

    John4me05 Well-Known Member

    Can someone please explain for me
  4. mainebear

    mainebear Well-Known Member

    Me Too?
  5. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Well-Known Member

    In a ladder, you load up several cartridges, starting with the lowest charge and working up. You fire a single group with those cartridges, noting the sequence number of each. What you will usually find is some shots cluster very closely together, others fall outside the group. The middle load of the tightly clustered group is usually your most accurate load.

    It's a quick method of developing a load. You can improve on it (sometimes) by taking your chosen charge and loading 10 more cartridges with the OAL being the variable, and shoot them as before. Take the mid-OAL of the tight group.
  6. John4me05

    John4me05 Well-Known Member

    Ahhhh so 5 1 shot groups at 1 target instead of 5 5 shot groups at 5 different targets
  7. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Well-Known Member

    A ten shot group at one target, each with a different load. Select the rounds that hit closest together.
  8. dakotasin

    dakotasin Well-Known Member

    i really like the ladder method of load development. you'll be completely finished w/ load development in 2 range sessions...

    i run all my ladders as far as possible. typically for rifles i like a 350 yard ladder, and for revolvers 100 yards, and for pistols i like 50 yards. at the longer ranges i can see exactly what is going on, and to what degree a change makes. my typical ladder is 10 shots, each a 1/2 grain stiffer than the one before (except for rum's, where the increment is 1 grain). i record chrony readings on each shot, and note bullet impact on the target w/ each shot.

    doing it this way allows you to test 2 or 3 or more powders in 1 range session, and be very confident w/ your choice by the end of the day. ladders save a ton of money in the form of bullets and powder, and if you are working up loads for a real kicker, you will appreciate being completely done w/ load development w/ the fewest shots possible. if you aren't running ladders now, you should really try it. if it doesn't work for ya, you won't be out much.
  9. Crimp

    Crimp Well-Known Member

    You also might want to check out Dan Newberry's OCW method, which IMO has benefits over Audette's ladder method. Very interesting stuff!
  10. John4me05

    John4me05 Well-Known Member

    Ill try it as soon as i get some different tips for my .223

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