Collecting the Data: Chronographs Part 1

As most precision shooters know, having accurate data for your ammo is a huge part of precise, repeatable shooting. For our Semi Lightweight Barrel Shootout, we are taking a close look at a wide range of ammunition from a variety of manufacturers. In addition to the accuracy and precision down range we hope to gather info on the velocity, ES and SD of each type of ammo to get a better look at what makes certain ammunitions shoot great. As we continue to do these tests we hope to build a large library of chrono data for a wide variety of barrels, ammunitions and conditions.

We are fortunate to have two chronographs available to use, a Magnetospeed V3, which is quickly becoming one of the most affordable, trusted and easy to use chronographs on the market. The other is the relative newcomer, the LabRadar. This unit uses Doppler radar to measure velocity far after a bullet leaves the muzzle which should add some interesting information to our data.

Due to the Magnetospeeds design that typically mounts to the barrel of the firearm you are shooting (you can mount it in a picatinny mount with the V3) we were worried about how that may affect the accuracy of the barrels. The LabRadar mounts to a tripod and is set next to your firearm and detects the projectile(s) as you fire. Both units export data to a microSD (Magnetospeed) or SD (LabRadar) card. This data can then be opened on a PC to allow easy, concise access to all of the data recorded.

Tonight I went out and shot both of them side by side to see how the information matched up between them. I will be posting that later tonight in part 2!

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