04/21/19 – Below are my results:
Rifle: AR-15 with a 16” FN barrel, 1/7 twist and a YHM Phantom QD suppressor.
Powder: Hodgdon CFE223
Bullets: Hornady 75 gr BTHP (P/N 2279)
COL & Crimp: 2.250 with light taper crimp
Cases: All Wolf Gold trimmed to 1.750”
Conditions: Overcast, 64 deg F
Load Data *
- Hodgdon: Start 23.0 gr (2680 fps) and Max 25.0 gr (2876 fps) – 24″ barrel, 1:12″ twist
- Hornady (9th Ed.): Service Rifle Data – Start 20.2 gr (2200 fps) and Max 24.9 gr (2700 fps) – 20” barrel, 1:9” twist
- Hornady (9th Ed.): NATO – Start 22.2 gr (2500 fps) and Max 26.5 gr (2900 fps) – 20” barrel, 1:7” twist
Note * – Always verify load data for yourself, starting low and working up in safe increments. Published data varies from source-to-source, and subject to typos and transposing errors. Additionally, internet posts such as this are someone’s personal experience.
Here were my results, 5 shots each at 50 yds:
CFE223 (23.0 gr) – Avg 2369, ES-54, SD-19, 1.50” group
CFE223 (23.5 gr) – Avg 2429, ES-65, SD-27, 1.00” group
CFE223 (24.0 gr) – Avg 2498, ES-23, SD-11, 1.25” group
CFE223 (25.0 gr) – Avg 2612, ES-52, SD-19, 1.25” group
CFE223 (26.0 gr) – Avg 2704, ES-60, SD-22, 2.25” group
A few observations:
- For the top two powder charges, I discounted one shot each as probably my bad shooting.
- I am using an EOTech EXPS2-0, so I do not consider this precision testing. I had to adjust my optic left after the first set and was shocked with the grouping for the 23.5 gr load. Three literally hit the bullseye within a ½” diameter dot and two only ¾” high.
- I had no signs of pressure, including the top end load of 26.0 gr.
- Comparing the published Hodgdon data (24” barrel) to my results (16” barrel):
• 23.0 gr 2680 fps vs 2369 fps = 311 fps/8” = 39 fps/in.
• 25.0 gr 2876 fps vs 2612 fps = 264 fps/8” = 33 fps/in.
• Average 36 fps/in difference.
• So interpolating my best group at 23.5 gr would be about 2720 fps (2429 + 288).
- I should probably try a few loads between 23.5 & 24 grs.
- Don’t forget to focus on accuracy and not velocity. If I had no chronograph, I would be clueless on velocity and would go with the lower charge for my particular barrel, powder & bullet combination.
The load data contained above was developed using specific components. Other components may not produce equivalent pressure or velocities; therefore, it is recommended that the user be familiar with the basic rules of reloading safety. If you choose to use any load data above, you are using at your own risk.
Always verify load data for yourself, starting low and working up in safe increments. Published data varies from source-to-source, and subject to typos and transposing errors. Additionally, internet posts such as this are someone’s personal experience. My recommendation is that you should always consult at least three sources of manufacturer’s ammunition and/or powder reloading data before reloading your own ammunition.