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I Like Crisp Round Holes In Targets

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by gunnels, Jan 17, 2015.

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  1. gunnels

    gunnels Member

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    I reload 380, 9mm, 40 S&W, and 45. I use both lead and plated bullets. I tend to prefer truncated cone flat point and semi wad cutter shaped bullets. I am constantly experimenting with bullet/powder combinations. When testing I will load a full range of the recommended powder weights but I typically settle on pretty light loads.

    I have noticed that sometimes the bullets leave nice crisp round holes in the target and sometimes the holes are ragged. Do ragged holes indicate something is wrong with the flight of the bullet or am I reading too much into it?
     
  2. Creature

    Creature Member

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    Yep, you're reading to much into it.
     
  3. CZ9shooter

    CZ9shooter Member

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    As long as it not an oval shape due to bullet tumbling. Cardbboard backing behind a regular paper target sometimes helps make cleaner holes. Hanging paper with no backing gives me weird shapes. Not only will the hole be ragged, but it tears in a random direction sometimes too. Can almost look like tumbling.
     
  4. Dudedog
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    Dudedog Contributing Member

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    Wait till your vision starts going bad and all the holes look fuzzy around the edges.....:evil:


    SWCs (and WC) bullets do tend to cut nicer holes than TC bullets.
    Target backing can make a difference IMO.
     
  5. rsrocket1

    rsrocket1 Member

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    You have a better chance for crisp holes if you choose a bullet with a pronounced shoulder and not a gradual taper like a TC or RN bullet. That's why wadcutters and semi wadcutters are so good for target shooting.

    It may sound strange, but having the target lay flat and tight against a cardboard backing really helps too. Sometimes shooters come on these boards thinking their bullets are keyholing when in fact the bullets are simply ripping the target paper because it has no backing.

    While these 45ACP bullets were fired from a muzzleloader at 1400 fps, they are pistol bullets and you can see some holes are fairly crips, while others are ragged. Notice that the ragged holes are where the target was not sitting flush with the cardboard backing (top holes) versus the nice crisp holes on the bottom left group where the target was flush against the cardboard. The other picture shows what the bullets that made the holes look like and the sabots I used in the ML rifle.

    Hope that helps.
     

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  6. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    Paper weight and quality have a lot to do with it too. But the square shoulder is what give you nice clean holes.
     
  7. Catpop

    Catpop Member

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    Plus one for new cardboard backing (hint- those old waxed cardboard campaign signs that litter the roadside every so often make great backing and target holders) and shouldered bootlits, like Kieth style.
    Catpop
     
  8. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    The bullet profile is what give you the nice round clean holes in the target.

    Wadcutters punch a clean crisp round hole like a hole-puncher would. Semi-Wadcutters will too but to a lesser extent. Round nose bullets push through the paper and leave ragged edges as will truncated bullets.
     
  9. deadeye dick

    deadeye dick Member

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    I use pizza boxes or the like For targets and stick on orange bullseyes. The cardboard is great for WC or SWC's Nice round holes:D
     
  10. j357

    j357 Member

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    +10 on using any target (even printed on a home ink jet) backed by and firmly taped to any cardboard, event trash which is a great idea I hadnt really considered as a source.

    I like to use a stash of thick 8x11 poster stock a buddy gave me and circle a 3 or 2.5 inch pvc coupling in black sharpie with an internal cross of red sharpie at all four corners, taped to cardboard. That will leave crisp holes with RN bullets it tell you.:evil:
     
  11. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Member

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