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Another look at Piledrivers

June 14 2017 at 8:52 PM
gubb33ps  (Login gubb33ps)

Another look at the high BC piledrivers.

HAd a long run of playing with the H&N .177 21gr. Piledriver. Never got the results that Harry got with his, but perhaps it was that (1) I was using the H&N versions and he was/is using the U.K. made versions, (2) he's a better shot than I am, and (3) I'm kind of envious of the rifles he uses them in.

In the real world, by my actual tests, are very close to .08 BC, which is way-way ahead of "normal" pellets. Almost solid, round nose, boat tail, they just don't shed velocity nearly as fast as "normal" .177 pellets.

Also won't shoot worth a ding-dang in most rifles.

So far, tested 15 .177 rifles of all velocity ranges, action types, etc. Found two that shot them well enough to actually use at moderate ranges (like 50-75 yards). Unfortunatle, the ones that did shoot them were not the ones set up for speed/power.

The other possible problem with the .177 Piledrivers was some tests of pellet stability AFTER impact. In the best rifles found, would make nice round holes and didn't indicate any tipping or "death spiral", but the tests also indicate that after contact with something semi-solid (including meat) they tended to tumble. Didn't get the peletration you'd expect, but a lot more rip-n-tear of tissue.

Which didn't stop me from trying the 30gr. .22 version.

If it does come close to that .09 BC, will be interresting. The .177 verion turned out to be very close to its reported BC, will have to test the .22 version.

So I pulled out 3 .22 PCP's that happened to be at hand today, of different power levels, figuring on something like 30/40/50 foot pounds.

L to R:

M10 set up for 825fps / 35gr cast bullets / 52.9 foot pounds
Beeman Chief that was set for 792fps/ 18.1gr./25.2 foot pounds.
BAM 51 set up for 964fps / 18.1gr. /37.3 foot pounds

photo e14b04c9-38ec-4ab9-860d-b5a8279fc232.jpg

Just to see (as I was so dissapointed by most the rilfes in .177 using Piledrivers making large random patterns) shot at 20 yards for first tests.

Went with 10 shots in this quick test...just trying to see if any of the 3 was worth a test at longer range.

photo 4a94b528-f78c-4766-b554-0fd502b8fcf8.jpg

Which ain't match accuracy (more like 1/3 to 2/5" at 20 yards...for something like 1.7-2MOA). Not terrible, is at least useable. ALL the rifles will shoot some other "normal" pellet better...all will shoot some worse.

The energy increased in two rifles (25.2 foot pounds became 29.2 and 37.3 foot pounds became 40.3). Decreased in the one I was using as a "slug shooter" (down from 52.9 foot pounds to 50.3).

What got me is that the first 3 test rifles all shot well enough at 20 yards to make 50 yard testing a reasonable thing to do. With the .177 versions, it took awhile to find any rifles worth a move to longer range. time permits...will be shooting these over some distance, getting the real world BC, and seeing if any of these three show a useful accuracy at 50 yards.

If any do, even the "slow" rifle, will teast it on some "meat media" (last time it was a raw stuffed chicken wrapped in a two layers of t-shirt) to see if they have the tendency of the .177's to tumble in meat.

By this time (3 rifles into testing) was pretty discouraged with the .177 version's accuracy. Not so discouraged with the .22's. MIGHT find one that really-really "likes" them.

This message has been edited by gubb33ps on Jun 14, 2017 8:57 PM

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