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Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

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Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

Old 03-19-2006, 10:15 PM
  #1  
Spike
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Default Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

I'm a new Omega owner and my first trip to the range last week was good overall. The gun grouped well with 250gr shockwaves and 245gr Barnes spitfire boatail expanders. I was discouraged by the difficulty loading the barnes sabots (even with a clean barrel). Some of you suggested to try the Harvestor crushed rib sabot which I took to the range today.

WOW! They went in like butter. I couldn't believe the difference in loading between these and the ones that came with the barnes/shockwaves. Needless to say, I'm a crushed rib man from here on out. Thanks to those who got me onto this product. It's ribbed for my pleasure now!

So now the true purpose of this post. I was shooting at from a bench at 25 yards (cut me some slack I'm looking for consistency) and shot 5 barnes boattails in the new crushed rib sabot. I used 100gr of 2f 777 powder for every shot. Cleaned between each shot and like I said, they went in like magic. Unfortunately, I didn't hit the paper once.

I followed this session with the exact same protocol except I used 250gr shockwavees in the crushed rib sabot. Again, they went in like teflon. Attached is the result of my six shots (it's actually the same target I shot the barnes at but you wouldn't know)

The only explanation I can come up with is that these sabots aren't compatible with boat-tail bullets or at least this barnes bullet. I know the petals on the crushed rib sabot run deeper than the barnes sabot but I didn't think it would matter too much. I used the special $5 "barnes bullet alignment tool" to ensure these were seated properly. I've never missed paper consistently like this before. I can add that the shots were all over the place as they hit the board off paper both high and low.

Anyone else experience anything like this before? Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

gopherfan


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Old 03-19-2006, 10:28 PM
  #2  
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

gopherfan

I am not a Barnes bullet fan, but there thousands out there... There really is such a thing as a sabot built for boat-tail bullets.I do not know what shooting a boat-tail in a regualr sabot would produce, but I can not believe that would cause the problem. I do also know that there are lot of peope out there shooting Barnes bullets in regular sabots.

There is another possibilty - the crush rib may be to thin for the Barnes and you may be getting blow by. The Barnes is a .451 bullet the Shockwave is .452. .001 doesn't seem like much but it really is. It would be mysuggestion that you try some MMP HPH-24 50/45 sabots or even regular 50/45 Harvesters. The MMPsabots work well in my Omega and as I have loaded 'crush ribs' I have to tell you I thought they were a little to loose. In the same breath I also need to say that not all Omega bores are the same unfortunately.

Good luck...


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Old 03-19-2006, 10:44 PM
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

I think you experienced some bore smoothing with the wider T/C Shockwaves.

Always start-off a new ML by shooting a box or two of full-fledged conicals like Maxiballs before using sabot/bullets with new inlines.

I would suggest trying the Barnes again - but this time, use them after2-3 T/C Shockwaves at the range. See what happens on the target paper. If it's bad news again, do like Sabotloader suggested & change to the regular Harvester plastic sabots.
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Old 03-19-2006, 10:46 PM
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

Thanks sabotloader, I still don't understand why the barnes bullets (which are the narrower) are harder to push than the shockwaves. I've tried the shockwave sabots with the barnes bullets and vice versa and they still seem tight. How loose is too lose when pushing a sabot? I know it's an impossible question but I'm just curious.

By the way, I nearly couldn't pull my breach plug today after the range session. I'm trying out your tape solution.

gopherfan
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Old 03-19-2006, 11:02 PM
  #5  
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

Triple Se7en-

What do you mean by bore smoothing with the shockwaves? They're the only thing that seemed accurate. In fact, both the barnes and shockwaves have done well with their factory sabots...they're just a pain to push.

I've heard that about conicals before. I'm going to pick up a box or two. Heck, it's fun just to shoot and maybe it will help things level out.

I appreciate the advice guys!

gopherfan
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Old 03-19-2006, 11:17 PM
  #6  
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

gopherfan

The Barnes sabots are thicker they are built for a larger bore. The SW's come with a thinner sabot. If you were to order the Hornady SST it would also come with the thicker sabot.

If I am reading your post correctly - even when you put the Barnes in the SW sabot it was still difficult to push down. There is a possibility that you may have gotten the wrong sabots with your SW's. TC did package the wrong sabots for a time, they will exchange them if you call them.

My ultimate test as to the proper fit of the sabot and projectile to the barrel is - you should be able to push the bullet and sabot into the barrel with pressure from your thumbs. Problem the Thompson QLA... doesn not allow you to do so. So the next rule is with the ram rod you should be able to start the combination down the barrel by applying moderate pressure. Once I get the combination started down the barrel - I can push it down to seat with one hand. Youroriginal description with the crush ribs really sounds good, but it might be to easy.

I really can not even come close to explaining why you missed at 25 yards with theBarnes and drilled the target with the SW's. In fact I would say it was impossible.

I still go with the original thought try to load either regularHarvesters or MMP-24's and see what they do for you.

The tape thing has worked for mefor years I realy hope it works for you. Remember to wrap from the nose back - one wrap all the way back. When you are done take a light and look down the barrel you should see the tape over the nose of the breech plug all the way around the barrel.

good luck - mike


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Old 03-20-2006, 07:36 AM
  #7  
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

All I'm referring to is just a hunch! You may of had a tiny burr or two that hung-on for the Barnes bullets - but were knocked off/smoothed-overwhen the Shockwaves went thru.

If it were my gun, I'd still run a box of conicals thru. If you can find some Buffalo Ballets or the 10-12 pks that Traditions puts out, - even theHornady Great Plains will work.

Then go back to sabots.
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Old 03-20-2006, 11:12 AM
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

FWIW, I like the regular 50/45 Harvester sabots in conjunction with the Barnes bullets. The only ones I have used have been regular flat base Expander MZ's, though. Very accurate. And just the right amount of seating pressure in all three of my T/C guns. I did not try the crush rib sabots with these bullets since the regular Harvester sabots gave such good results.

Yes, it is possible to get too much of a good thing when looking for an easy seating sabot. Especially with heavier powder charges. If it wasn't for the issue of getting them down the barrel and seated in the first place, we would all be using really tight sabots. They give higher velocity and a narrower SD of velocity from shot to shot. Powder burns better.

I think it's possible the sabot base is trying to fold over the boat tail of the Spitfire under the heat and pressure, causing the base to come apart? Get a bigger target and see what the bullet holes look like at 25 yards. Try to recover a sabot. Substitute a regular Barnes MZ bullet with a flat base and see what happens.
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Old 03-20-2006, 07:06 PM
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

Maybe I can shed some light on your problem. I
also shoot an Omega and I have done a lot of
work & investigating bullets & sabots. As sabot-
loader said not all bores are the same. Mine was
extremely tight. I ran a cotton ball down the bore
and a lot of fibers got stuck on a lot of places. So
I asked Cayugad what to do? His suggestion was
to take out the rough spots, using J-B Bore paste
and a small piece of scotchbrite pad. Well I did
this and when I was through my bore looked like
a mirror. Here is where a lots of folks will dissagree
with me. I put on some gloves ran extremely hot
water down the bore, ran some patches untill clean,
then while barrel was hot I ran a patch with bore
butter on it. This was an idea I got from T/C.
After all this I still couldn't get a bullet/sabot to
load without using a sledge hammer. Next I talked
to someone who knows the in's & out's of sabots.
That being Sabotloader, he said keep looking keep
testing their is a bullet/sabot combination that will
work. After much testing, reading, talking to T/C
talking to Barnes, talking to Hornady, and Harvester
about the new "Crushribs" I finally found that magic
combination. I shoot the 300gr. Hornady XTP with the
.451 Harvester crushrib sabot. Loads easy shoots
great. It is a shame that the ML industry doesn't
have a standard size bore, but they don't. So
don't give up the right combo. is out there. As
for the misses at 25yds. I'd have to side with
blow-by. Good Shooting & God Bless Danny
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Old 03-20-2006, 08:00 PM
  #10  
Spike
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Default RE: Are some bullets sabot sensitive?

Thanks Danny and the rest of you who have offerred advice and insight on this situation. I haven't experinced any snagging of dry patches but I appreciate the how-to on the JB application. I've read other posts which reference it but until now I wasn't sure what to make of it. On my next big trip to cabelas I'm going to look for some as I've heard it's good at removing sabot residue as well.

I'm also tempted to blast some conicals and see if that changes things. I'm glad that the crushed rib sabots loaded well and shot accurately. If I didn't have two more boxes of the barnes bullets on the shelf the whole issue would be dead. I just found it so interesting to have such consistent shooting all day and then completely miss the paper on the crushed rib/barnes combination. Looking at the barnes sabot in more detail I've noticed the petals don't extend to the base of the sabot. They only run 3/4 of the length of the sleeve and I personally suspect that this protects the boattail from flopping around. I'm headed back out again in a few weeks and I'm definetly going to try to see if they're just as inaccurate with this combination again. Proof of principle I guess.

Regarding the 300gr XTP's, are these available in bulk without the sabot? The more I get into this I forsee that I'll be buying sabots and bullets seperately and I'd rather get my money's worth. Any suggestions? Is there a comprable pisol bullet from Hornady?

Thanks again for everyone's ideas. I sat next to a guy at the range this weekend who was shooting a brand new muzzleloader. He was shooting powerbelts without swabbing betweeen shots. He was already talking about selling the gun because it "didn't shoot right". I offered what little advice I could (I let him swab with the alcohol/windex) and he still was convinced the gun was at fault. I'm learning more and more that this is a passion and and art. Finding the right combination of gun, powder, projectile, sabot, conical, and method for maintainence can be frustrating but also fun if you have a little guidance. There's a lot of different ways to do things but ultimately knowledge is power.

Without this forum I would be lost. I truly thank you all.

Tom
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