Hornady Factory Ammo Powder - 6mm Creedmoor 108 ELD Match

JKPJKP Senior MemberPosts: 1,848 Senior Member
I picked up some Hornady Match 108 ELD 6mm Creedmoor factory ammo to try in my Ruger Precision Rifle. Outstanding results.

Obvious solution is to simply buy a bunch of the factory ammo and call it a day.

But, I like to hand load so I pulled one of the bullets and took a look at the powder. It doesn't look quite like H4350 which is what Hornady published for the longest time as a recommended 6CM load. Further, it's 40.4 grains and the box indicates that's pushing the 108 grain bullet over 2900 fps.

Point of comparison, 40.5 grains of H4350 chronos around 2840 fps.

The powder looks close to H4350 but it has two distinct "pellets" in it. One looks just like H4350 but the other has a greenish color to it.

Hornady has recently published a more extensive load sheet for 6CM:


Quite a few more powders on the list now. I compared IMR 4350 to what I pulled and it doesn't have the green tint.

Anyone ever seen a powder with green in it that's on the list above? Some poor phone photos for reference:






  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    With results like that why reload?
    Sell the fired brass and by more ammo. Use the extra time to load other cartridges, or post more threads.:applause:
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 1,848 Senior Member
    It's more of a reverse engineering challenge than anything else. Plus, the factory ammo is over a $1 a cartridge...
  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 1,848 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Unless the ammo maker says "we use _____ powder", it's probably a secret blend of eleven herbs and spices.

    That's what I'm thinking.

    I may be focusing on the wrong thing though. Further reverse engineering suggests that the neck is a bit "looser" on the factory ammo. I'm basing this on how little effort was needed to pull the bullet. I'm using Hornady's dies so I don't know that I can control that much in my loading process.

    Another comparison is COAL - the factory ammo is 2.80 while my loads are 2.83. Not much of a difference but it could matter I suppose.

    Or, I could have just gotten lucky and dropped five in roughly the same hole.
  • MileHighShooterMileHighShooter Senior Member Posts: 4,768 Senior Member
    Superformance? I don't have any to look at, maybe someone here does
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    Once again, please refrain from cutting short any baseless totally emotional arguments with facts. It leads to boring, completely objective conversations well beyond the comprehension ability of many.
  • shotgunshooter3shotgunshooter3 Senior Member Posts: 5,427 Senior Member
    Do they still publish the load data on the box like they used to? One of the requirements of the 6.5 Creedmoor was for factory performance to be easily duplicated in handloads.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    - I am a rifleman with a poorly chosen screen name. -
    "It's far easier to start out learning to be precise and then speeding up, than it is having never "mastered" the weapon, and trying to be precise." - Dan C
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,778 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Unless the ammo maker says "we use _____ powder", it's probably a secret blend of eleven herbs and spices.

    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,018 Senior Member
    I don't know of a major ammo maker that uses "canister grade" (The stuff us mere mortals can buy) powder in their ammo. I'm certain Dave Emory and his group in Hornady's ballistics lab found the consumer powder that most closely replicated their powder.

    Quick lesson on powders, the reason why there's up to a 10% variation in different lot numbers is because ALL (that I know of) consumer powder is actually "blended".

    They want, let's say H4895, they make a batch (batch"W") and test it.... oops, it's just outside the spec for H4895 on the "fast" side. They figure out if they mix it with "this much" of batch "M" (which was a little out of spec for H4895 on the slow side) they will have a lot that is within the published specs for H4895. They test it, and as long as it's within H4895 specs, they'll bottle it up for consumer consumption.
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,018 Senior Member
    JKP wrote: »
    Further, it's 40.4 grains and the box indicates that's pushing the 108 grain bullet over 2900 fps.

    Point of comparison, 40.5 grains of H4350 chronos around 2840 fps.
    As uncommon as it is for factory ammo to actually produce advertised velocities, what is the factory ammo actually delivering, compared to your 40.5gr 4350 load?

    If you're just comparing published ballistics, unless they're from the SAME BARREL, the comparison is invalid
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 4,692 Senior Member
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    You don’t need to match the powder. You need to match the bullet and velocity.

    Not exactly true. You can use the same bullet and match the chronoed velocity with a different powder, but I'll almost guarantee you 100% the barrel time will be different. Barrel time, for those that haven't heard the term before, is how long the projectile is in the barrel after ignition.

    This is important because, the barrel flexes as the round is passing through it. Think of it as shock waves traveling up and down the barrel much faster than the bullet clears the muzzle. Different barrel lengths greatly affect barrel time, even when when shooting the same bullet with the same lot of powder.

    Ever notice how a charge of "xx.x grains of zzz powder" can yield excellent results while xx.z grains yields patterns even though the velocity spread of both loads overlapped? That's barrel time at work.

    Google Chris Long and read his excellent research on this. He explains it much better than I.

    Access to QuickLoad and a chrono are essential to effectively using this info, though. Quickload used in conjunction with Chris' data has saved me a ton of load development $$ over the years.

    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 26,188 Senior Member
    What Knitepoet said about blending powders, and what Linefinder said about barrel 'dwell time' of the projectile are the two things that mess with your pet loads. Pretty much ANY powder that ammunition manufacturers use for their loads, and what the powder manufacturers sell in the canisters reloaders buy is a blend to get the burn rate and max pressure within the limits of that particular powder number. What the ammo manufacturers have blended for their supplies of powder is more tightly controlled as to X pounds of XXX powder and Y pounds of YYY powder to get that specific blend, and they pay for that tighter quality control and the blending process.

    And THAT is why if you find a particular lot number of a powder that makes your rifle shoot well with a particular bullet, you buy more of that lot number and hoard it like gold.

    And rimfire ammunition is the same. Some lot numbers in your rifle will shoot really well, and others not so well. Even small differences in powder burn rate and max pressure in the small charges in rimfire rounds make a difference.

    And that barrel vibration thing the Linefinder talked about is one of the reasons those fat target barrels came about. Those big heavy barrels still vibrate, but the mass of the barrel dampens the vibrations; not eliminate them, but dampen them.
    If the U.S. Congress was put in charge of the Sahara Desert, there would be a shortage of sand in under six months.

Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.