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F 1 Chronoy on the way, any tips.

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by BossHogg, Feb 9, 2012.

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  1. BossHogg

    BossHogg Member

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    Well I opened the wallet and have a $70 F 1 chrono from wallyworld on the way. Any tips on how to go about setting it up ? Does anyone know how many shots in a string before you have to reset? The only tip I know is don't shoot it.:D
     
  2. edfardos

    edfardos Member

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    replace the aluminum rods with wood shishkabab skewers. If you shoot from the ground, shield the device from dirt/dust. Dirt falls into the sensor and into the screen. No need for skyscreens on cloudy days.

    have fun!

    edfardos
     
  3. USSR

    USSR Member

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    BossHogg,

    A tip for anything other than completely overcast days: Don't rely on just those small skyscreens. Tape some translucent material between the skyscreens and off to the side facing the sun. Direct sunlight on the sensors will cause erratic velocity measurements, usually hundreds of fps higher than reality. BTDT.

    Don
     
  4. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    As Don said, direct sun on the sensors is not your friend.

    In addition to the shades mentioned, you can tilt the whole chronograph in the direction of the sun. With the sun low in the sky, particularly in winter, it helps shielding the sensors.

    Also, bring a black magic marker or Sharpie along. A black ring around the front of the bullet improves the contrast for the sensors to see. I find this more necessary with 17, 20 and 22 caliber rounds.

    Remember the offset between your sights and the barrel. Sight too low over the screens and the bullet will hit the chronograph. Also, do not get in a hurry when shooting over the chronograph. This will also lead to a shot up chronograph.

    Have fun with your chronograph.
     
  5. Samari Jack

    Samari Jack Member

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    Put clear plastic strapping tape across the openings to the eyes. I did that with mine to keep dust and burnt powder out and makes cleaning a breeze. Put a target up to aim at behind the chrony. Aiming at an empty space is hard. Follow the directions closely. This is a cheap POS but will work fairly well if set up properly through trial and error.

    I have mine set up indoors using an incandescent light source (150 watt suspended 8 feet above using a reflective shield behind the bulb). I have to turn off my fluorescent lights to get the thing to read correctly. With my indoor set-up, I had to position the enclosed sun shields so that they block direct light from the bulb.

    I like the idea about the chop sticks. I've already dinged my metal rods once and was a pain getting it straight again.
     
  6. kingmt

    kingmt Member

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    A pocket full of rechargable batteries.
     
  7. MtnCreek

    MtnCreek Member

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    The instructions will probably tell you where the sweet spot is for the best reading. I put some elec. tape on my screen supports about 1.25" higher than the sweet spot to mark it.
     
  8. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    The bottom line is good batteries, keeping it clean, setting up far enough away to eliminate shock wave distortion, use defusers only if you are getting inconsistent readings or error messages.

    Once I figured mine out it has been super reliable. One of the key factors here is set up 20' away. Any closer and it will start throwing errors or obvious wrong fps. because of shock waves. I also recomend a couple pounds of weight hanging off the bottom of the pod to prevent wind or muzzle blast from knocking it over, and to help dampen shock wave effects.

    And so far as how many shots until you reset it, I only reset mine when it throws an erorr code. I've tested mine against much higher quality units, and it has been right on the money about 98% of the time.
     
  9. brickeyee

    brickeyee Member

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    Don't shot the chrony or the sensors.
     
  10. Strongbad

    Strongbad Member

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    Sheesh, all of this sounds like a lot of trouble! lol I've been using mine for 10 years (Master Gamma) and haven't done any of that crap. lol I have the two piece rods so the screens are pretty far from the eyes. On my father's old chrony (it's red, I can't remember the model) he's only got 1 piece short rods which makes for a tight shooting window. On mine that's not an issue.

    Anyway the only time I've had an issue with the sun is right when it's directly overhead in the middle of the day and usually a little re-orienting the chrony will solve any bad readings. Beyond that, make sure that you're shooting through it in a straight line. If you're shooting off axis, it'll error on you, or atleast mine will. If you're running into issues with powder, dust, etc. set the chrony up further from the muzzle. :)
     
  11. rsrocket1

    rsrocket1 Member

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    10 years and you have neither shot the chrony itself nor shot any of the rods?
    You obviously don't use it very much :D
     
  12. BossHogg

    BossHogg Member

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    Ordered it on Wed and got an e- mail Thur saying it was ready for pick-up. Got the 9 volt's and wooden dowels and set it up out back. Got air pump bb gun and shot a few through it. 511 with 5 pumps and a high of 587 with 8 pumps. Should I go ahead and shoot it with the BB gun just to get that out of the way? :D
     
  13. rsrocket1

    rsrocket1 Member

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    No need to. You'll shoot it with a real gun soon enough.

    Another thing to do is when you go out to test your loads, bring your BB gun or a 22LR gun with you to test out the Chrony before you start testing your valuable loads. Sometimes the thing is just outright temperamental such as when the sun is low on the horizon to your back or some other odd position.
     
  14. Strongbad

    Strongbad Member

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    If only that were true. I don't go to the range as much as I used to (2-3x a month), but I still go pretty often. I'd say the chrony probably gets set up 90% of the time? Not only have I not shot it, but I haven't even had a close call. Heck, I've even shot through it with my 500 S&W off a bench with open sights! On all of my rifles, at the distance that I set it up, when you turn the scope down, you can see the rods. Put the crosshairs in the middle and squeeze. It's not that hard. :)
     
  15. Samari Jack

    Samari Jack Member

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    You must be using a rifle. Try it free hand, not on a rest with a mouse gun .380. When I first got mine, I nicked one of the uprights. After that, I used a rest with a target to shoot at behind.
     
  16. josephbw

    josephbw Member

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    I'll do you a favor and show you what happens when you shoot your chrony, so you don't have to find out for yourself. :D


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  17. Sturmcrow

    Sturmcrow Member

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    I got mine for Christmas '10 and only just shot over it a few months ago. I had read so many posts about how finicky it was, and had a buddy that seemed to have no end of troubles with his, that I kept getting cold feet about getting it out. I'm pretty sure that my buddy just did not know about the "keep a fresh battery in it" rule, and I have had ZERO problems. The thing has been absolutely great. Sure, I've had an ERR 2 here and there and a few readings that were obviously wrong, but the SD's let me know when something is off. I did manage to shoot it a little bit on the second outing. Noticed when I was putting it away that the sheet metal was bent back a bit behind the second sensor. Had I been a half inch lower, it would have looked like Joseph's above. I say, go out, use it, keep some batteries around, and report back on your results.

    For instance, I am a bit worried that my 10mm 10.8gr 800X load in my 6" Storm Lake G20 barrel is reading at just under 1500fps. That's a 900 ft-lb load out of a 700 ft-lb cartridge. Seems odd that 1.5" of barrel would add that much velocity, but it seems to shoot fine, with no "pressure signs" and is an accepted load at the 10 ring.
     
  18. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Yup, chronographs don't take to kindly to bullets.

    I have had two expire from lead poisoning.
     
  19. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I like to shoot some factory ammunition over my chronograph to "calibrate" the fire arm. I get a idea if the gun shoots fast or slow relative to published information.

    I have two 20" barrel ARs that the velocity varies 10% between them with the same ammunition.

    I always remove the battery at the end of a session. The battery lasts me a long time that way, calender wise, but it is good to have a fresh battery on hand.

    I found the Chrony manual has some good troubleshooting tips in it. I sometimes have a little trouble getting the Chrony to read the bullet reliably at first, but after making some adjustments in the screens, shades, and technique I usually get the Chrony to read well for the remainder of the session. I have the most trouble when the sun is low in the sky.
     
  20. CMV

    CMV Member

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    I keep a couple spare batteries in the body of the Chrony in individual packs. there's tons of dead space in there & I don't have to worry about having a new battery on hand if needed.

    I have the F1 also. Stay away from fluorescent lighting with it. That will make it go haywire. Our club has a station set up for using a chrony. Has 3 very bright floodlights in a line hanging kind of low just to give a good light source directly over the chrony. Problem is, the lights over the tables are on the same circuit. Even though there are few of them and they're higher & farther away, they'll still make my chrony act up. The lights going down the sides are CFLs and they too will interfere.

    No shading or placement I've found can make my chrony F1 act right inside that place. And I don't mean off by a little - it will tell me I have mild .223 loads going over 4,000 fps or factory .45 ACP going 400 fps.

    I've seen some of the benchrest guys there using their chrony's and getting great results. Different brand and they have to plug them in. They have their own light source. But even with all the fluorescent range lights on, they can sit them anywhere (not under the floods - those aren't even turned on) and get good results.

    Outside on an overcast day - mine works wonderfully. Last time I used it was under a gray sky and it took about 50 readings with no errors. Next best conditions are under an overhead sun with the diffusers in place. I'll typically get 18-19 out of 20 with no errors under those conditions. Anything else is a crapshoot based on sun position.

    I tried to make my own light shield/source using a cardboard box and some LED lights and after a few attempts gave up on it because even when I got it right, after taking it apart & putting it back together it wasn't repeatable.

    If I remember to take a camera, I'll get a picture of the setup at the club. It *looks* like it should work wonderfully for a chrony indoors but I've had no luck
     
  21. jr_roosa

    jr_roosa Member

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    I got rid of the cardboard box and keep it in a 30 cal ammo can with all the parts and the manual and some spare batteries.

    Keep it out of the rain. Water makes it very unhappy.

    J.
     
  22. BBDartCA

    BBDartCA Member

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    Try getting used to set up first with a pellet gun at home. Better than at the range when you have to wait for it to go cold to make adjustments.
     
  23. Lost Sheep

    Lost Sheep Member

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    Pellet gun is not necessary, either, if you just want to test it for operation. Get a medium-long (20" or so) rod and wave it as fast as you can passing over the sensors and you should get readings in the 300-400 fps range. (The longer the rod, the faster you can get the end of it to go. With my hand alone, I could not get enough speed or a compact enough "shadow" to get a reading.) The rod should be at right angles to the axis of the instrument so the shadow or the rod is as short as possible.

    Good Luck.

    Lost Sheep
     
  24. Strongbad

    Strongbad Member

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    Saw a guy on another forum a couple of years back that made a little deflector for the front of his Chrony. Used a piece of beefy angle iron with the corner running horizontally across the front of the chrony. That way if you hit the iron it deflected up or down away from the Chrony. Good idea, but again I've made it a practice not to shoot mine lol.
     
  25. cberge8

    cberge8 Member

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    As for proper lighting, I find a $20 Targus tripod from Wal-Mart (in the camera section) works beautiful. This greatly eases getting the chrony setup at a natural shooting height, and tilting it for best lighting.

    You may also hear people saying that Shooting-Chrony will take damaged units (including shot units) in as a trade in and sell you a new one for half of retail. While this is true, they give you 50% off their retail price. When mine was shot by "a friend of mine" I looked into doing just that, after paying their 1/2 retail and shipping it came out to about $10 more than the original I ordered from wal-mart.

    As for the memory issue, my F1 keeps 20 shots in memory. After 20 shots, it will continue to function without needing to be reset by simply "forgetting" the oldest shots as you add new ones.
     
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