Range Report  Hornady 147's coming apart...

goosed

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Factory 6.5CM ammo 147 ELD-M's lot # 3180567.


Roughly 160 rounds fired and accuracy is good when they hit, but I'm consistently getting 1-2 per 20 that are coming apart mid-flight. Got a few more variables to isolate before I blame the bullets, but thought I would check in to see if anyone else is having similar issues?
 

Supersubes

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    Save a few for Hornady. They’ll want to check them out, and they will replace them no questions. Hard to believe they’re coming apart frankly. Can you tell us something about the rifle?
     

    TXSGFmrCWO3

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    For factory ammo, that would take a barrel twist of something like 1 in 4" if they're not defective. The only time I've ever heard of bullets coming apart is lightweight varmint bullets reloaded to high velocities out of a high twist barrel.
     

    TheGerman

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    77g Nosler CC's had this problem way back. Don't remember what it was exactly, but something with over a certain velocity and twist the jackets basically spun off.
     

    goosed

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    Save a few for Hornady. They’ll want to check them out, and they will replace them no questions. Hard to believe they’re coming apart frankly. Can you tell us something about the rifle?

    Recently bought several cases of this stuff so there is no worries about saving some for Hornady.

    I really dislike needy customers or being one myself. So I'm just trying verify if others are having the same issue or if I'm the only one and should continue to eliminate variables to ensure it's not gun/barrel/me before I contact them.

    2 rifles tested, both exhibit it:
    1)savage w/ generic 28" prefit CBI barrel ~350rds on barrel.
    2) RPR factory barrel ~1600rds on rifle

    Using the 147's primarily for casual midrange f-open events. 1-2 per box there's the classic symptoms of the bullet coming apart with the puff of smoke off the bullet midflight with trace ending right there and no impact on target.
     

    Enthusiastic_Amateur

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    There are quite a few threads out there with Hornady running tests on the suspected bullets but apparently being unable to replicate the problem.
     

    goosed

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    77g Nosler CC's had this problem way back. Don't remember what it was exactly, but something with over a certain velocity and twist the jackets basically spun off.

    In my case of factory ammo @ 2720-2765fps out of standard twist 6.5cm barrels, pretty hard to believe I'm pushing velocity or twist limits of these bullets, but who knows.

    It might also just be a batch of jacket issues similar to the issues berger had just a few years ago... or it might be an issue isolated to just me. At this point I'm just collecting data points to fully understand it.
     

    goosed

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    There are quite a few threads out there with Hornady running tests on the suspected bullets but apparently being unable to replicate the problem.

    Huh...

    So there might be something several of us end users are missing? Any evidence that someone found a single definitive solution to their issue or just the usual forum "i hate company xyz cause they didn't give me a hand out", "will never use xyz again", "bla bla bla"?
     

    lte82

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    I havent had an issue in matches shooting 10-12 rounds in a string with the 147s. 7.5T 5R Bartlein @ 2770-2780 fps with ~900 rounds.
     
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    morganlamprecht

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    ive "heard" of this happening with bullets caused by rough areas in the chamber around the throat, never seen first hand so take it for what its worth...would be hard to believe you got unlucky enough to have that on 2 different rifles tho...never seen any 147s come apart personally, and have buddy who has shot 1000s of them in 6.5 creed...a few other buddies shooting them in 6.5prc havent complained either
     

    goosed

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    I havent had an issue in matches shooting 10-12 rounds in a string with the 147s. 7.5T 5R Bartlein @ 2770-2780 fps with ~900 rounds.

    Appreciate the first hand experience.

    Few questions if you don't mind:
    Lot# ?
    Factory ammo or hand loads?
    creed or other cartridge?
     

    goosed

    Gunny Sergeant
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    ive "heard" of this happening with bullets caused by rough areas in the chamber around the throat, never seen first hand so take it for what its worth...would be hard to believe you got unlucky enough to have that on 2 different rifles tho...never seen any 147s come apart personally, and have buddy who has shot 1000s of them in 6.5 creed...a few other buddies shooting them in 6.5prc havent complained either

    Yeah, I've heard that before as well. Not sure I put much stock in that before, but it certainly can't hurt to take a moment at my next few local matches to ask around if anyone has a bore scope to confirm or eliminate that possibility.
     

    goosed

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    How are you cleaning the barrel?

    Every 120-240rds it gets the foaming stuff (wipe-out brand), let soak for 4-8 hours per instructions. Followed by brass brush passes. Then 2 dry VFG pellets... if they come out fairly clean I'm done... if too dirty run Hoppe's on VFG's for a few more passes, followed by dry VFG's if it will be shot within a week or oiled if not.

    For stubborn copper buildups I use CLR (diluted 1 to 3). Followed by hosing it down good with several gallons of water through barrel and finish with a good oil coating. CLR has only been used on RPR, it has NOT been used or needed on CBI barrel yet.
     

    223762

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    I’ve heard that CLR works really good. I’ve not tried it yet myself. Do you brush both barrels? How many strokes with the brush do you give the barrel? Does the barrel sit for a long time dirty, until you get 120-240 rounds on it before cleaning?
     

    lte82

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    Appreciate the first hand experience.

    Few questions if you don't mind:
    Lot# ?
    Factory ammo or hand loads?
    creed or other cartridge?

    Hand loads, 6.5 creedmoor. I can get the lot number for you in a few days.
     

    Luke

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    I'll have to check my lot number, but I have fired a couple boxes of the 147's without problems. The high BC of the 147's are great for short barrel 6.5CM's.
     

    flyer

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    I was thinking about buying 1,000 147 grain blems.

    If this was the problem, I'm glad I didn't buy.
     

    Supersubes

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    It’s gotta be a manufacturing defect of some sort. I bet 99% of users are shooting them out of creedmoor sized cases in 8 twist barrels. In other words, not very fast and not over stabilized.

    Hopefully Hornady can get their finger on the problem quickly, and make everyone whole again who lost on the bad bullets.

    It’s a great bullet, and my go-to at the moment. 147’s in a creedmoor with reloder 26. Like a whole new cartridge....
     

    neomastiff

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    Shooting at a regional match in Kansas last month several of us in the squad noticed a "whiz" and puff of smoke at 100 yards, or so from a competitor's factory rifle. This happened at least 1 out of every 20 - 30 rounds. Factory 6.5 Creedmoor Hornady 147gr ELD-M ammunition. Strange, to me at least, was some of the separated jackets were impacting targets and some were flying all over. A few stages later another shooter says he was having a rough day with fliers and weird stuff happening with his bullets. Turns out he was shooting the same ammo, different gun. Another shooter reloading 6.5 PRC has the same issue with the projectiles he was loading. In both cases the lot numbers were provided to Hornady. As others have posted, I'm confident Hornady will get to the bottom of this.
     

    knuckleballz

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    I have loaded up and shot 100 147 running 2835fps out of a 8 twist 24inch tikka with no issues. Lot#26333
     

    Enthusiastic_Amateur

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    Shooting at a regional match in Kansas last month several of us in the squad noticed a "whiz" and puff of smoke at 100 yards, or so from a competitor's factory rifle. This happened at least 1 out of every 20 - 30 rounds. Factory 6.5 Creedmoor Hornady 147gr ELD-M ammunition. Strange, to me at least, was some of the separated jackets were impacting targets and some were flying all over. A few stages later another shooter says he was having a rough day with fliers and weird stuff happening with his bullets. Turns out he was shooting the same ammo, different gun. Another shooter reloading 6.5 PRC has the same issue with the projectiles he was loading. In both cases the lot numbers were provided to Hornady. As others have posted, I'm confident Hornady will get to the bottom of this.

    This has been going on for a while, they haven’t got to the bottom of it and claim they can’t repeat the failures. I wouldn’t hold your breath.

    First melting tips, now bullets coming apart....it would be a huge blow for them to have another major issue......we’ve all become obsessed with chasing the BC whether it’s the 147 or the RDFs. There is often a compromise.

    I’ve gone to the thicker jacketed more consistent Lapua Scenar and although it has a lower BC they just work and aren’t difficult to load for.
     

    Ledzep

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    A few reports of it with 147s and 180s. Some consistently reported conditions are 4-groove and 6-groove rifling with square corners. I have yet to see a report out of a 5r barrel. Brux and Proof care common.

    That said I've been running the 140s and 147s in a 4 groove brux and 4 groove proof and have had very few issues. 1 or 2 140s lost in the proof 6.5 SAUM (900 total rounds on it), nothing lost in the brux creedmoor. The brux knots factory match 147s sub .6" @ 100 for 10 rounds.

    The 140s I lost were with heavy fouling in a match. Hot barrel. One time occurrence about 600 rounds ago on 1 stage of a match.

    Would be a good idea to post barrel maker, rifling profile, twist, groove count, and if you can slug it and get land/groove dia.
     
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    Ledzep

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    TJC, melting tips was not exclusive to Hornady. They were just the first to find it via dopler testing and correct it. Before they told everyone, nobody knew any different. The heavies coming apart is a pretty small percentage and they're aware and working on it.
     
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    Milo 2.5

    The Dalai Lama of the Reload
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    If bullets are coming apart, need to make sure the barrel gets cleaned good to eliminate fouling as the cause. A borescope really tells a story too, we pay good money for premium barrels but it is no guarantee they are inclusion free. I just chambered a Dasher with a proof carbon barrel. I scoped it after 14 shots and was surprised to see about 4" in was a spot stripping copper, laid it in the groove in a neat fan shape pattern for 3". I cleaned it and fired 30 more, it had eased up some by then. After 100rds the copper is tucked just under the one side of the rifling, I'll monitor it and JB paste if it is an issue.
    A lot of different things can make a bullet come apart, even the construction of the bullet itself. If you know it is an issue, help your own cause if you need to shoot them.
     
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    goosed

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    Quick update:

    Gave it a good cleaning friday, then shot 100 hand loaded 140 hybrids Saturday followed by 100 FGMM 140 SMK's on Sunday with cleaning. Zero bullet issues.

    Cleaned it good again Sunday night, next day shot 60rds of 147's... Spotter thought there may have been a puff off shot 17, 19 and 48, but they retained accurate impacts on the 600yd target. Being spotter wasn't certain I give them a passing grade. However, shot 34 clearly came apart at 200yds with no impact on target.

    200 rounds post cleaning of Berger's and SMK's with no issues. Followed by 34rds post cleaning before an ELD comes apart... frustrating. I'll have a scope available to me on Thursday night to be certain, but I'm not confident the barrel is a problem being it's only one bullet type having issues. We'll see.
     

    stevenc23

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    Quick update:
    200 rounds post cleaning of Berger's and SMK's with no issues. Followed by 34rds post cleaning before an ELD comes apart... frustrating. I'll have a scope available to me on Thursday night to be certain, but I'm not confident the barrel is a problem being it's only one bullet type having issues. We'll see.

    Have you spoken with Hornady? What did they say?
     

    goosed

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    Have you spoken with Hornady? What did they say?

    Nope, still trying to do my due diligence to eliminate possibility of rifle related issue currently. Waiting on bore scope now and will go from there.
     

    stevenc23

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    I would definitely recommend calling Hornady as well. They are aware that some individuals are having this problem and they may be able to help you figuring what is going on. If their bullets are coming apart for any reason they need as much information as possible so they can address it.

    FWIW I called them and asked about the 147s before I placed an order to restock my supply. The 147 is my bullet of choice for my 6.5 and I expressed my concerns to them given the numerous reports I have heard. They said that in all the cases they are aware of it is happening in tight bores.
     
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    Bulletsmith

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    I have shot these in my 6.5 Creed up to 2840 or so and I have not had any problems. I use a 1-7.5 twist Bartlein 5r barrel 26in long.
     

    goosed

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    I would definitely recommend calling Hornady as well. They are aware that some individuals are having this problem and they may be able to help you figuring what is going on. If their bullets are coming apart for any reason they need as much information as possible so they can address it.

    FWIW I called them and asked about the 147s before I placed an order to restock my supply. The 147 is my bullet of choice for my 6.5 and I expressed my concerns to them given the numerous reports I have heard. They said that in all the cases they are aware of it is happening in tight bores.

    If their company line per your words is it's the barrels fault, tight bore or otherwise. Why recommend calling them?
     

    GNCC407

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    Not to resurrect a old thread, but I had one do this to me yesterday during a load development. I heard a second bang sound and a puff about 75 yards down range. First time Ive ever had this happen in over 500 firings of the 147.
     

    BCX

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    I’m on 2 FB forums. Guys having problems w 147 ELD. Hornady told me it was only the bullets from 2018. I never had a problem till my 2019 lot of bullets ?
     

    BCX

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    Please call Hornady. They told me I was the first to say there was issues w the 19. I don’t think they believed me lol!!
     

    223762

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    How many rounds are on the barrels? How do you clean the barrels? Do you know who’s barrel you have? I’ve shot thousands of the 140 eldm, and never had a failure
     

    lte82

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    140's are not the problem, 147's.

    So 140's are 100% good to go then? I have been shooting 147's for two years, but I only have like 400-500 of the original 4000 I bought in 2017, and debated about switching to the 140 if they aren't blowing up.
     

    223762

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    If you lost confidence in the 147, then try the 140s. They shoot great out the guns I use them in. They hammer in the ar-10. And I’ve never had one come apart.