Range Report .416x.348 Win On H&R Receiver

Look here: http://www.thehunterslife.com/forums…ad.php?t=19936 for “The rest of the story”.

Skipping all the “fun” you can read about in the above post, let me cut to the chase scene.

I shot the newly made rifle built around the H&R Pardner action, chambered in .416x.348 Win. I had loaded 10 rounds: 5 with Speer 350-grain Deep Curl (#4491), and 5 with Hawk 400s (0.035″ jacket). I intend to use the Hawks for most of the hunting I plan with this rifle, but they’re about a dollar a bullet, so I was using the Speers for ‘sighting in”. I had planned to sight in at 50 and shoot the 400s at 100 yards.

This first picture is the first group shot from this rifle.

You can see the shots numbered in the order in which they were fired. The “1” with a circle around it, and an “H” below it, is the first 400 Hawk. I’ll explain more about that below. As you can see, the first and second shots were a bit “wide”. However, apparently, the rifle was just “settling in” as the next 8 shots (the last three 350s, and all of the 400s) were GREAT.

Here is the analysis of that first 5-shot, 350-grain group.
First the digital “target”. I have removed the mean so that the group is centered. I have also scaled all of the digital targets to the same size so they are easy to compare visually.

The squares on the target are 1″ on a side. The circle is the 95% Confidence Ellipse (CE). Based on a sample size of 5, that ellipse should surround 95 out of the next 100 shots with that rifle and bullet.

Here are the stats on the group:

The first line “Mean Distance from Group Center”, is the average “miss”. So, the 5 bullets missed the Point of Aim by an average of an inch (0.96″).

The second line is the variation in the “x” (windage) axis. 0.92 is fairly big, and you can see that from the target.
The third line is the variation in the “y” (elevation) axis. 0.88 is just a little better, but it is better.

The fourth line – degrees of freedom – is a figure I need for doing the rest of the analysis.
The same goes for the next line.

The “x-axis RADIUS” is HALF the width, in inches, of the 95% CE.
The “y-axis RADIUS” is HALF the height, in inches, of the 95% CE.

The next two lines are the area in square inches of the 95% CE. (Two separate ways of calculating area for a “check” on the numbers used to generate the 95% CE.) 54 square inches is a BIG 95% CE. That means AT 50 YARDS, whatever I’m shooting at would need to have a “lethal zone” that was 8.5″ x 8.12 inches. About the size of a white-tailed deer’s ‘chest cavity’… at 50 yards. BUT…

The news gets better! First, those last three shots were indicators of what the rifle was going to do. (Second, it always help to increase sample size!)

Here are the stats on each shot:

“How wide and how high” is how far off the Point of Aim the group center is. In this case, it’s 2.07″ left and 5.62″ high.

The next lines are how far each bullet missed the Point of Aim (after accounting for being 2.07″ left and 5.62″ high.) The first shot missed by 1.81″. The second shot by 1.52″. Both pretty bad, especially at 50 yd. However, look at the next three: 0.15″,
0.80″, 0.55″. That’s a pretty good three-shot group, even if at 50 yd. You’ll see these three shots combined into a graph of the “last 8 shots”.

The five 400-grain shots were good. Here’s the target.

That lower shot (#5) was likely operator error. I’ll explain later. Also, the first of the 400-grain Hawk bullets was shot at the same POA as the Speer 350s were. In the digital target, I bring it down into the 400-grain group.

Here’s the digital target:

The other people at the range were “waiting” on me, and I hurried that last (#5) shot. Otherwise, pretty good for a ‘start’. Oh yeah, ignore the 350 “Hornady” in red in the title. (I was fiddling around and didn’t change the title before I took the screen-shot.)

Here’s the data:

All the meanings are the same as for the 350-grain, just the numbers have changed.

The area of the 95% CE is only 30% the size of the CE for the 350s. But, I think I should add that the 350 group includes two (of 5) shots that are essentially the first two shots out of the barrel, and the rifle was clearly ‘shooting in’. Therefore, I have some confidence – borne of the last-3-shots grouping – that the 350s are going to shoot well too.

More stats:
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Compare the “wide and high” figure in this group with the 350 group. It’s about an inch more to the left, and 2″ lower. I think once I get a better front sight reticle, the windage difference will be much smaller. The elevation difference will likely be similar to what it is now. That is provided I maintain these velocities.

Now… Considering how nicely the last three 350s shot, and how nice all of the 400s shot, (and that the first two 350s were “first shots”), I combined the last three of the 350s with all five of the 400s. Of course there is no real target for this, so here is the digital target combining the last three 350s, and all of the 400s:

The yellow points are the 350s.
By the way, those “holes” represent the actual dispersion of shots. The 400s were just over 1″ wide.

Here are the stats:

Look at how small these numbers are. There are two reasons:
1) The two “first shots” have been removed. That helps.
2) Sample size went from 5 to 8. That MATTERS statistically. (This illustrates how risky it is “betting” on data from small sample sizes.)

Here is the shot by shot data:

(The “wide and high” numbers are not meaningful as the means have been removed.)
The biggest misses are only .4″ from the center of the group. You can double the above numbers for the individual shots for 100 yds. (That of course doesn’t account for “OPEN sights” at 100 yd.)

Here’s the ‘payoff’: Notice the area of the 95% CE; TWO point TWO square inches! Compare that to 54.2. THAT means that based on this data set (of 8 samples) we can expect 95 of the next 100 shots to land inside that 2-square-inch circle. Extrapolate that to 100 yards, and it becomes 8.7 square inches. That’s still very good. That’s a circle 3.2″ wide. 95 shots inside a 3″ circle. That’s “good”. I’m “happy” with that. Meaning, I have some optimism that this rifle will shoot well. And likely, at least with both the Speer 350s and the Hawk 400s.

The muzzle velocities were:
For the 350s:
1904
1888
1857
1714
1904

For an average of 1853, with a standard deviation of 80.25. That SD is pretty bad, and it can’t be ‘sliced and diced’ by “first shots”. But, if you remove that 1714, the average only goes to 1888 and 22.16 respectively. The 1888 is closer to the 1900 predicted by QuickLOAD, and the 22.16 isn’t a bad SD.

For the 400s:
1753
1751
1734
1684
1775

For an average of 1740 and an SD of 34.43. Again, nothing to write home about. If we drop the 1684, the average goes to 1754 and 16.84 respectively. This is WAY (150 f/s) below the 1900 predicted by QL. I’m scratching my head over that.

I had forgotten to factor in the wind. That might explain a little of the ‘left-right’ dispersion. Also, the trigger is VERY stiff. (Unfortunately, I don’t think the malfunction problem has anything to do with its stiffness.) Stiff triggers cause horizontal spread. So, between the wind and the trigger, I should get a little improvement if I can shoot in less wind and get the trigger pull lessened a bit.

Also, I’ve got to change that front reticle. It’s a post. I’ve never liked posts. Don’t like ’em in scopes, and don’t like ’em in open peep sights either.

I kinda wish I could mount a scope on this thing without making it look ‘wrong’. It might be able to shoot quite well. Trouble is, the more I handle it and look at it, the more I’m liking it’s short, stubby ‘style’. A scope would really detract from that. I COULD mount a scope to get the best load worked up, but if I did that, when I went back to open sights, I’d always be ‘thinking’ how good it was with a scope. It’s not good to be “thinking” about “stuff” when you’re hunting. Regardless, I have to get the trigger squared away first.

I took it apart at home: “No problem” at home.

Took the forearm off. Took the barrel off. Pulled the hammer back. NO PROBLEM!

Tried it several times. No problem.

Put the barrel back on. Pulled the hammer back. No problem.

Put the forearm back on. Pulled the hammer back. NO PROBLEM! 

I thought about “temperature” when I was at the range, but couldn’t imagine that that was the problem. Still can’t. But I have no idea WHAT the @#$%^&* problem IS!

Problem “fixed” – for the moment. Now will have to keep an eye on it. The good news is that even if not working properly, it can still be made to work in a “two-handed” operation. Since it’s a single-shot, that’s not as big an issue as it would be for a repeater.

Paul