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2/22/2018 7:46 PM  #1

Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

Question ?

Working on loads for a 50 cal straight barreled hunter class rifle for table shooting.

In weighing .495 balls, what kind of weight variation do use to group the balls?

In a .395 ball I allow total variance of .3 grains per group.

Since a .495 ball weighs about twice as much would .6 grains be reasonable?

It's too darn muddy at the range to shoot so  might as well stir the pot a little here.



2/23/2018 8:06 AM  #2

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

I don't consider the fact that one ball may weigh twice as much as another. I try to keep the variance uniform regardless of overall weight.


2/23/2018 10:16 AM  #3

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting


Have a double cavity .495 Lee mold that I'm using.

Ended up making 4 groups- 179-179.9, 180-180.9, 181-181.9 and 182-182.9 grains. That range covered all of the balls from the pour.

Might be a little overkill but they will be consistant in each group.

That will eliminate all of those fliers, right ? 😄😄😄😄


     Thread Starter

2/23/2018 2:04 PM  #4

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

With those spreads you will want to keep the 4 groups separated. I wouldn't worry about which group you use as long as you shoot a match with all balls coming from the same group. That should definitely eliminate any flyers, guaranteed!!


2/23/2018 4:08 PM  #5

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting


I have the groups seperated into 4 metal cans and labeled.

When I get down to just a few left that aren't enough for a match, they will go back in the lead pot.


     Thread Starter

2/23/2018 6:30 PM  #6

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

Sounds like a plan to me. Look forward to seeing you, Beau and others.


2/24/2018 5:06 AM  #7

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

Carl and Mark...
Thought I'd throw in on this one since despite a lot of folks telling me "it don't make no difference" I'm one of those "ball weighers" too.
For shooting Table and Chunk I use a .500 ball. My nominal weight is 186.5 gns. I keep the ones within 0.5 gns of that, up or down.
For my 40 cal. longrifle, I'm casting .395 balls and I reduce the acceptance range to +/- 0.1 gn.
As you can see...I use a different acceptance range depending upon the size. I'm also casting some 500gn. bullets for BPCR and accept +/- 1.0 gns. on those.
I used to keep the ones that were "slightly" outside my acceptance criteria to use for "foulers", but have quit doing that. I prefer a philosophy to make every shot count. I have had too many occasions where one of those "fouling shots" , usually the first shot of the day...finds the 10 ring. Now what do you do..???

BTW Carl...I had dinner earlier this week with John Meisenheimer, formerly of the Kentucky Longrifles. He was my Organic Chemistry professor at EKU. It was an event for Eastern Kentucky University alumni down here in Orlando Florida. John and his son "Lucky" live there. It was at Lucky's house. John is getting along well and enjoyed showing some pictures of himself and the group he used to shoot with in Kentucky, in full regalia.


2/24/2018 8:29 PM  #8

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

      With my .395 Ideal mold most of the balls weigh 94 grains plus or minus .3 tens of a grain so I use 94
grains minus .1 plus .2 tens of a grain.

​    With your .495 balls I think I would use one cavity then weigh 20 balls throw out the lightest and heavyest
​ball,then average the remaining balls. Then go plus or minus .5 or .6 tens of a grain of your average and see
how they group.

​      I don't like Aluminum molds I think they heat up and cool down quick and I can not hold a constant weight
maybe it is how I cast.

​    Carl hope to see you and Bo and Mark at the April 8th Table Shoot at Allen's.I am ready for warm weather
​so I can start shooting Just had Cataract/Implant Surgery and can see my sights again.


2/24/2018 8:39 PM  #9

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting

    I don't know what is going on but when I post something it does not show up the way I
typed it.



2/25/2018 9:08 AM  #10

Re: Round Ball Weights for Bench/Table Shooting


Looks like we all agree that weighing balls is important to achieving the best accuracy and good lead pot and mold management make for more uniform balls.

I use a Lee 20# bottom pour pot set at about 8 1/2 on the knob and try to not let the volume in the pot vary more than 1" as I mold. When I add lead back in I wait for 5-10 minutes for the temperature to come back up. I leave the mold resting on the edge of the pot during that time so it stays hot.

I use a Cabelas electronic scale to weigh the balls and will set out 4 shallow cups and start weighing and grouping the balls very similar to Don's weight tolerances. Anything above or below the groups goes back to the melting pot. As I weigh I look at every ball for any visible flaws and discard any found.


I will let some of the older Kentucky's Corps guys of your recent meeting with John. They will be glad to hear he is doing well.


Bo, Dan and I are practing our table shooting weekly here at my place and are looking forward to the start of the season. Our first table shoot is down at Bryan Station's club at Wilmore, KY on March 14 and the second shoot on our list is Alan's on April 8.

Look forward to seeing everyone through out the season.

Keep shooting,


     Thread Starter

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