Brinell Hardness Important?

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Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by dsandula on Mon Jan 04, 2016 7:31 am

I'm looking for viewpoints and experience with brinell hardness.  Is there a real difference between say 12 and 16 brinell hardness ratings in our activity?  Is it gun to gun, load to load dependent?  I've been shooting Dardas 45 ACP bullets for years and his website advertises 16 brinell hardness.  I just bought 185 grain Missouri bullets at 12 brinell hardness which they say are optimized for bullseye velocities?  The Missouri Bullet website advertises bullets at 16 brinell hardness as a "power" bullet.

Doesn't it boil down to what works?  That being said, do I have a better chance of finding a combination of barrel, bullet and load with softer bullets?

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Virgil Kane on Mon Jan 04, 2016 9:25 am

Not an expert on this but I can relate my experiences with2 different 1911's. I have a 1911 that I built myself and it has a Kart barrel. Shoots lights out with soft swaged bullets from Magnus much better than any cast bullets I have tried whether from Magnus, Missouri, S&S or Dardas. My other 1911 is an older Clark Sr. gun that has the original barrel. There are so many tooling marks in this barrel that it looks more like a sewer pipe than a barrel. Swaged bullets in this Clark just scatter and form a pattern, harder cast bullets however out shoot the Kart barrel I have in the 1911 I built. Magnus 801's are this Clark's  favorite cast bullet but I'm not sure of the brinell hardness of these.

Only thing I can say it I believe that every barrel is different and some experimenting with various bullets and makes is well worth the time involved.


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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Rich/WIS on Mon Jan 04, 2016 11:21 am

Not sure if it matters a lot at target velocities how hard a bullet is.  Rule is to match your alloy to what use you plan for the bullet.  I cast all my SWC 45 out of range lead and it will usually come in abut 11-12 brinnel, and will shoot well with no leading.  Rifle bullets are generally shot at higher velocity and pressure and need a harder alloy.  Difference also in shape, a long rifle bullet not well supported by the lands can slump as it is accelerated and shoot poorly, a hard alloy helps stop this.  In either rifle or pistol most important issue is making sure the bullet diameter is large enough to completely fill the bore to prevent gas blow by and leading.  All of the above assumes a good smooth barrel, rough spots in a bore are tough on soft alloys but if really bad no amount of hardness will fix the problem.  A rough barrel will often shoot fine with jacketed bullets because the inherent strength of the jacket is not affected by the roughness, but will damage a cast or swaged bullet.  If you can afford it get the rough barrel replaced, or just load different bullets for each gun.

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by 243winxb on Mon Jan 04, 2016 11:48 am

Cast bullets -If the alloy is to soft, the nose may get deformed on the feed ramp, causing jams.

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jglenn21 on Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:56 pm

the vast majority of bullet makers today use a 92-2-6 alloy which will be 16 on the Brinell scale.


plain old wheel weights make great bullets for us and run softer. a quality lube does matter when it comes to leading

here is the formula for figuring the right Brinell harness. it is based upon the pressure of the round in CUPS

Brinell = CUPS / (1422 x .90)

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jmdavis on Mon Jan 04, 2016 1:16 pm

Lube is important and must be factored with hardness.

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Jerry Keefer on Mon Jan 04, 2016 2:08 pm

I have a tester.. The old soft lead theory Suspect .. My soft lead theory is, " I hate soft lead ".. It is a barrel leading  problem..Alloy costs money.. and 99 % of the shooters have no clue what the BN is on the projectiles they are shooting.. Star..Look at the followers that thought Star was the panacea.. I hated and refused to buy them..Ransom tests would put the first  ten shots in a perfect cluster.. after that it got progressively worse, by a significant margin.
Stars I have on hand as "antiquity samples" test between 8-10
Remington HBWC are softer yet at 6.. I think the saving grace for the Remingtons is the "whiskey barrel" shape.. It minimized leading, but they  do lead the barrel, but not quite as bad as Stars. Many of us brushed or used a Lewis Lead Remover prior to every 50 yard stage in PPC.
Penn cast presently on  hand all tested 18. Give me cast hard bullets any day..

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Dave C. on Mon Jan 04, 2016 3:17 pm

The size of the bullet means more than the hardness.

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jmdavis on Mon Jan 04, 2016 3:25 pm

Does anyone have a hardness for zero bullets (swaged not jhp)?

Size, lube, velocity and hardness all relate to accuracy and leading.

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Bubba Blaster on Mon Jan 04, 2016 3:43 pm

http://www.lasc.us/Fryxell_Book_Contents.htm

Chapter 3...Alloy Selection and Metallurgy



Hardness. So we want to make sure that a bullet isn’t too soft, or leading will result through galling and abrasion, and we want to make sure that it isn’t too hard so we don’t lose the beneficial effects of obturation, and fall prey to leading through gas-cutting. Does that mean that we have to hit a very specific hardness for each cast bullet application? Thankfully, the answer to that question is “No”. Rather, there are a range of hardness's that serve very well for each pressure/velocity level.

 Useful
ApplicationHardness Range
Light target loads (<800 fps and 10,000 psi)BHN 6-12
Standard revolver loads (800-1000 fps, 16,000 psi)BHN 8-14
+P revolver loads (1000-1200 fps, 20,000 psi)BHN 10-16
Magnum revolver loads (1200-1500 fps, 35,000 psi)BHN 12-20
454 Casull (1400-1800 fps, 50,000 psi)BHN 16 and up
          The lower end of each of these hardness ranges will expand somewhat in each of these applications. Harder bullets can be used, but they won’t obturate meaning that you’ll have to use a lube capable of sealing the system, since the bullet cannot contribute to this critical job. Hard lubes probably won’t work here. Note the recurrence of BHN 12 in many of these ranges, and remember that’s what the Oldtimers used to think of as a hard bullet. We’ll come back to this thought…

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jmdavis on Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:02 pm

I also know that a friend who did extensive testing, all at 50 yards, with a number of alloys determined that the best results in his Clark SR .45 and his wife's .45 came from Linotype. Since Lino was expensive they settled for alloys that hardened wheel weights and got acceptable accuracy. The alloy was around Lyman #2. I can get more info if anyone cares. 


I don't really want to spend time on casting, but I have been using Bull-X hard cast that are over 15 years old for the past year. They are almost gone. I would like to know the hardness of the Zero bullets without buying a tester.


Last edited by jmdavis on Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:59 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Jerry Keefer on Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:53 pm

Mike,
I don't have any to test, but I talked with Fred at Perry last year and he assured me they were sufficiently alloyed..

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jmdavis on Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:57 pm

Thanks Jerry. I'm going to get out to the range with the Ransom Rest and test a batch of them in the near future (likely the next warmish day). 

I've had no leading problems at all in any of 3 different 1911's with the Bull-X. That was what was concerning me with the swaged bullets. I have several k of Zero 185's that I hope will shoot as well as the older bullets. 

If they don't perform as well, I will sell or reserve them for practice and get Magnus or Penn Bullets to replace them. 



Mike

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by Wes Lorenz on Wed Jan 06, 2016 1:26 am

For those interested about range lead composition. My club's range is open to public shooting for most of the week, so there is a lot of jacketed (soft lead core) and 22lr bullets in the berm.
I have been casting for a few years and wanted to know the alloy composition. A fellow shooter tested my cast lead with a Niton analyzer:
http://www.thermoscientific.com/en/products/portable-analysis-material-id.html
Results were:

The lead tested out as,
Copper                     .25%
Tin                          .68%
Antimony                2.41%
Lead                      94.88%
 
If you noticed the percentages don’t add up to 100%, that’s because the analyzer couldn’t read the small amounts of trace elements such as carbon, sulfur and other contaminants. That’s normal.

I found this on service Ebay for $40.00:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Analyzing-Service-Only-Thermo-Niton-XL2-GOLDD-XRF-Analyzer-/262203132027

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

Post by jglenn21 on Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:29 am

Wes


your alloy is basically the old lead wheel weights. Works just fine for our soft loads. probably around 12 on the scale

they are some really good lubes out there today that pretty much eliminate leading

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Re: Brinell Hardness Important?

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