Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Old Handloader Magazine - Technical Details

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Peter M. Eick, Jun 18, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    5,035
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    I bought the 40 years of Handloader on DVD to read when I had time to kill working offshore. So far I have gotten up to issue #14 in July-Aug. 1968.

    This magazine is just amazing in the technical details provided on topics. I have to admit I have read several articles over and over again just trying to really understand the impact of what they were saying. For example there has been a running discussion over several issues of pressure excursions and the actually put footnoted and referenced equations and documented data instead of authors biases into the magazine.

    I actually had to sit down and play with excel a bit to understand some of the equations relating the ballistics and pressure curves to understand what they were presenting. This was also true when I sat down and read the series of articles about pressure and how it interacts with the powder and cartraige shapes.

    I learned a great deal about the powder and how primers work. The temperature of ignition and how much heat each primer put out was quite interesting to see. Also the discussion of the powley computer and the latent energy in gunpowder was fascinating.

    Also was impressive so far was to read the "ask questions section" and see all of the load information provided. Along with Harvey Donaldson's comments about how things were done and his little letters on the back pages.

    What has also been interesting so far is to read reviews of equipment where the author basically says this thing does not work right or gives poor results. Amazing to see the candor, to bad modern magazines can't say the same thing. What is also interesting how rare the articles are just sort of personal histories or what someone went hunting and we shot a deer type of thing. The articles are in general about handloading, techniques, equipment, concepts and detailed tests. To bad the modern Handloader is not 1/2 as technical is was the older issues.

    So I guess the question I pose is why cannot a magazine that is detailed, technical and well written survive in today's market? Why do we have to get some much personal history with every article and less detailed technical and accurate information like the older issues? Why do we put up with "gunzines" when we used to get "magazines" if you get my drift?
     
  2. dmftoy1

    dmftoy1 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,213
    Location:
    Lexington, IL
    I think the primary reason is that the internet is killing off the print media. If I spend money (rarely) on say an issue of "Guns and Ammo" I think I can read it cover to cover in probably 15-20 minutes. It used to be (say mid 80's) that there would be one or two articles in there worth reading. Even some of the authors I liked (such as Venturino) in Guns don't put anywhere near the detail that they used to. IMHO The sad thing is . . . .I don't enjoy reading anything on the internet anywhere near as much as I enjoy a good magazine. (format)
     
  3. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    22,063
    where'd you buy that? got a link? i'd love to pick up a copy
     
  4. NVMM

    NVMM Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2005
    Messages:
    435
    Location:
    NV
    I have alot of my old handloader magazines. They make wonderful references to look back on. I agree with both above posts. I would not subscribe to any of the gun rags. I think they do a disservice to new shooters. Hey! If somethings not right tell like it is. I learned a lot reading Harvey Donaldson.
    I also look back on my old American Reloaders Association Bulletins. Those writers gave solid and honest information. They went into great detail about the componants and what happened when you pulled the trigger.
    Todays rags are mostly an advertisement. Ah for the good old magazines.
     
  5. Matt Dillon

    Matt Dillon Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2003
    Messages:
    768
    Location:
    Houston, TX
  6. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    22,063
    when does the copyright expire? you could probably make copies of the older stuff for free
     
  7. EddieCoyle

    EddieCoyle Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    1,231
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    If it's not renewed, the copyright for the 1966 issues will expire in 2041.
     
  8. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Messages:
    18,372
    Location:
    Deep in the Ozarks
    Before or after December 2nd? I'd like to spend my 100th birthday reading those issues.:p
     
  9. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2005
    Messages:
    7,836
    Location:
    Ava, Missouri
    Make those copies with :D BIG:D print for Vern on his 100th...
     
  10. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    21,964
    Several years ago I wrote a letter to the editor taking the Wolfe (now Harris) magazines to task for their loss of technical approach. Also the waste of money on color interior photos. I mean a gun has a blue barrel and a brown stock, why do we need a color picture?
    The editor replied that Dave Wolfe and Neal Knox had run the magazines as a service to the shooter, often losing money on an issue due to low advertising content and low subscription and gun store sales. They were often paying for magazine publishing with book sales. The new owners were determined to make the magazines independent profit centers so they got them into newsstand sales and adjusted the content to interest the typical newsstand buyer.
    'Rifle' is closely approaching the point at which I quit subscribing to G&A and ST; 'Handloader' is farther behind but is moving that way.
    Most of my back numbers are in rented storage, I don't have the shelf space at home for them. The DVD is looking better and better. It is only money.
     
  11. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Messages:
    18,372
    Location:
    Deep in the Ozarks
    In my humble opinion, "Rifle" and "Handloader" lost a lot when they lost Ross Seifried. He wrote the kind of articles someone else here mentioned -- the kind you could read and chew over for an hour or two. The kind you kept for reference, or just for the pleasure of re-reading.

    They haven't got a writer of his caliber now.
     
  12. roo_ster

    roo_ster Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2003
    Messages:
    2,974
    Location:
    USA
    Where did Ross end up? He, too, was my favorite & inspired me to get a .577-.450 Martni-Henry.
     
  13. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Messages:
    18,372
    Location:
    Deep in the Ozarks
    I don't know. If there's some magazine he's writing for regularly, I'd like to know what it is, so I can subscribe.
     
  14. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    7,950
    Location:
    Ohio
    "So I guess the question I pose is why cannot a magazine that is detailed, technical and well written survive in today's market? "

    Ah..........maybe I am missing something, but that magazine is published in today's market. This month's issue has an article very similar to the one you describe: "Play by the Rules: Ballistics Math" which I found to be a very good article. He gives three rules which allow you to closely estimate: how much velocity increase you can expect with increased case capacity (such as in an Ackly improved case), how is velocity effected when you increase bore size but have two cases of equal capacity (7mm mag vs .338 Win mag: same case different diameter neck), and if in the same case how does bullet weight effect muzzle velocity.

    This is NOT directed at anyone in particular and certainly no one who posted in this thread but.......................
    I get a big laugh out of the people on these internet gun boards. They LOVE to blow their own horn about how the information on these boards is so much better than the gun magazines. AND they NEVER miss the opportunity to say so.
    I said the same thing in a recent thread and no one commented on my post: I would say that a huge percentage of the stuff on this board as well as most other gun boards is BS. First of all, sift through the threads and find how many you see that are about actually shooting guns. You will find that most of them are about "what is your faviorite gun" or "what is the best 9mm", something about shooting dogs or some such thing. Purely personal opinion with no data or facts mentioned as to how they arrived at their decision. A huge number of posts you read contain total misinformation. Most of the time this is innocent: the person doesn't have any experience with the thing in question but he can't resist the urge to post anyway. This is painfully obvious with threads asking about NFA weapons. If you pick out the threads that demand precise, serious information, almost nobody posts in those threads.
    But, there is that tiny percentage of stuff on these boards that I find interesting or helpful to my enjoyment of the hobby that makes it worth coming back.
    The point is, that magazines have their faults. I only read one of them on a regular basis. But the internet isn't much better IF any better.
     
  15. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Messages:
    23,648
    Location:
    Los Anchorage
    I still find enough useful info in "Handloader" to buy it. "Rifle" is also good, though increasingly fluffy.
     
  16. Jmurman

    Jmurman Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    661
    Location:
    MD
    I've never seen "Reloader" magazine, but would like to for sure...as I am a real newbie with this hobby.

    The DVD's sounded great until "$599" :what:

    I don't subscribe to too many magazines as I find they are more orientated towards the marketing aspects than real substance. The real exception is the magazine I get from Garand Collectors Assoc.
     
  17. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    21,964
    444,

    The rule of thumb article you cite was interesting and useful.

    My most recent specific complaint of insufficient technicality was with Handloading the .300 Win Mag Parker Hale Model 1200 in Handloader 237 by Steve Gash. He wondered why his rifle was less accurate with heavy bullets than others in the caliber. He found that it had an 11.5" rifling twist which was marginal to insufficient with the longer bullets of interest. Based on a formula developed by C.E. Harris and currently used and cited by Sierra as more precise than Greenhill. Good so far. Except that he gives the formula but does not say what value of "S" the "stability factor" he used or how to establish it. I guess I could back calculate from the results he gave, but instead I e-mailed Handloader. No reply.
     
  18. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    22,063
    444, i think everyone would agree with you. the advantage the internet has, however, is that you don't have to wait 30 days to see the article disputed in the corrections or letters to editor columns.

    sure, there is no shortage of idiocy here, but it's not all that difficult for knowledgable people to tell which other posters are knowledgable and which aren't.

    the danger is, the complete n00b probably won't be able to discern
     
  19. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    7,950
    Location:
    Ohio
    True enough but the same goes for the magazines.
    Someone who already knows what he is talking about realizes when a magazine makes a mistake. You can point the mistake out, but they may or may not acknowlege your correction.
    This board is no different. You can try all you want to clear up common misconceptions and it all falls on deaf ears.
     
  20. EddieCoyle

    EddieCoyle Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    1,231
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Plus it's free. Most of the time you get what you pay for though.

    THR is different. Anytime and every time I have a specific question and ask it here, I get the answer I need. Sure, you have to sift through all the "+1's" and "You-should-buy-a-Dillon" and "I-have-X-and-it's-better-than-the-Y-you're-asking-about" posts, but that's what blocked lists are for.

    I try to give back when I can, but I've learned more here than I'll ever be able to give back.

    Oh yeah... Hey 444, what's your favorite 9mm to shoot dogs with? :neener:
     
  21. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    7,950
    Location:
    Ohio
    Get a Glock :neener:
     
  22. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    5,035
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Well I am glad I am not the only one lamenting the loss of detailed technical discussions on line or in the magazines.

    I have to say I sprung the money for the DVD's (it was around $400 to subscribers when I bought them) for a very special purpose. I work offshore and like this job, I have been on. 60 days at sea, internet access is rare and slow speed. No TV to speak of (unless you like south east asia feed) and basically I wanted something to unwind to. When you project manage you have to do some relaxing thing (no beer on the boat either). Did I get $400 out of it? Heck yes, and I am only up to 1968.

    I want to read the technical details that make me a better reloader and not hear the history of the 45 colt round for the 20th time. Or why I need to match my bullet to the throat in a revolver. Sometimes I think the average gunzine should just change the cover picture from a prior year as it is so repeatative.

    Even when they try to write reasonably technical articles, they start making so many generalizations that even a knowledgeable practicioner of the art could tell they were glossing over important technical details.


    So where does that leave us??

    Where do we go for what I would call the "Master's Level or PhD Level" of reloading discussion? I know I am a participant there yet, but I would sure like to hang around and listen a bunch.
     
  23. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    22,063
    peter, you probably already know all three of these, but i've found the best info on reloading in the back issues of precision shooting magazine. I bought the "benchrest shooting primer", which is a compilation of articles from '82-'96. I highly recommend it.

    i've also found the discussions on accuratereloading forums to be far more technical on average.

    and finally, i like to call and talk to people. i usually call sierra's hotline before posting here. i like talking to the guy at RSI software (who is now posting here).

    some things you just have to hunt for
     
  24. NVMM

    NVMM Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2005
    Messages:
    435
    Location:
    NV
    Peter M. Eick, "I want to read the technical details that make me a better reloader and not hear the history of the 45 colt round for the 20th time. Or why I need to match my bullet to the throat in a revolver. Sometimes I think the average gunzine should just change the cover picture from a prior year as it is so repeatative."

    Thank you Peter M. Eick. That says it all.
     
  25. greg531mi

    greg531mi Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    611
    Location:
    MI
    What I don't like about rifle and Handloader, is they write about bolt action/single guns and their cartridges only! They don't write about the autoloaders, the pumps, they think they are for the military, and that's it. Also, handloader has had pistols, rifles(only $5000 customs of course!),shotguns, and optic's, but less and less reloading articles....Why? to sell more at the newstand. They are slipping, but are better than most still....At least they have writer's that know about guns, better than most.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page