Master Post for Semi Lightweight Barrel Shootout

This post is a master archive for everything surrounding the Semi Lightweight Barrel Shootout.  The test was conducted over veterans day weekend of 2016.  The data was processed over several weeks following and as a result it became some what hard for the casual observer to jump into.  When reading this information remember that during much of the ammo presentation we did not know which barrel or ammo had shot the best and we simply presented it as we found it.

 

The original post can be found @ SLW Barrel Shoot Out.  We fluctuated back and forth with the procedure for the test and it went from something we could do for a good time to concentrating on presenting everything clearly.

 

Testing went relatively smooth but we found early that we would be presenting fewer groups than we would have liked and the process was taking longer than we had hoped.  All barrels shot one ten shot group of each of the ten ammo selections.  Then they fired two five shot groups of each of the ten ammo selections.  Resulting in 60 rounds fired of each ammo and 600 match grade rounds being fired overall.

We went after the ammunition break downs first and each of the ten can be found in the links below.
Australian Outback 69gr

PPU 69gr

Black Hills 69gr

Federal Gold Medal Match 69gr

PPU 75gr

PMC 77gr

ASYM 77gr

Federal Gold Medal Match 77gr

CBC 77gr

IMI 77gr

The data from each of the ammunition types was compiled in a Data Summery found @ SLW BARREL SHOOTOUT AMMO DATA SUMMARY

Finally we compared the barrels using both Extreme Spread and Mean Radius

We also have an ammunition comparison adding price in as a factor found in the Price for Performance rundown.

If you enjoyed reading about this particular test share with a friend.  We learned a lot on how we wanted to share data in the future and how much we could attack in a given time frame.

Barrel overview using mean radius/average to center on targets

Before we talk about any of our own data I feel it is important to talk about what mean radius is and what it should mean in terms of accuracy reporting.  Any time someone talks about accuracy or precision as a general subject they quantify that using the term MOA.  MOA stands for minute of angle and is an angular measurement.  Generally speaking when they use this term they are talking about the measurement of extreme spread which they are showing the furthest outside two shots.  With an extreme spread you can have multiple ten shot groups that may look very very different but can be reported as the same size.

mean-radius-example

The above group illustrates how two groups which look very different could be misinterpreted.  The group on the right at .646 MOA extreme spread would be considered larger than the .643 MOA extreme spread on the left.  The are very close and could be a calculation error.  The reality is that the group on the left is much tighter with one outlier shot.  This isn’t necessarily a ‘flier’ or shot that should be removed from the group information but it surely shouldn’t define the entire group.  This is where mean radius comes into play.  By measuring each rounds displacement from the center of the group we can compare groups based off of the average deviation form the center of the group thus incorporating every round of the group rather than the two furthest groups.  The average to the center of the target on the left is .176 while the target on the right is almost twice as dispersed at .309.

Extreme spread has held its hold on shoddy reporting thanks to its ease of use.  Technology has taken over most aspects of our life but it seems to just be too easy for a shooter to approximate the furthest two shots (or often times eliminate the furthest and compare only the interior most groups)

Luckily there is great software out that we can easily process group sizes.  One such product is ontarget when you process groups through on target you can quickly compare extreme spread as with average to center instantly.  If you see other shooters presenting groups you can also quickly find a reference point and find the mean radius for comparison sake.

So how did our barrels and ammo compare when measuring every round of the group rather than just the extreme spreads?  (note some of the graphs were made by Ryan and are good.  The graphs with no Black Hills info are made by yours truly.  The computer genius)

Lets start with the Ammunition mean radius averages

ammo-group-average-all-atc

Right away we must remind that the ten round group for the Black Hills 69 grain was only 8 rounds for one barrel.  So 1/3 of the 10 round groups are slightly skewed and the combined data will be slightly different.  For that reason when we get to the barrel information there will be two graphics one with BH and one without.

Using mean radius we still see a rather tight pack among the full data of the ammunition results.  We still instantly pick up the larger PPU groups and find that it wasn’t a single or even a few misplaced rounds that sent the extreme spread to be the largest but the averages of the rounds to be routinely larger than the counterparts.

 

ammo-group-average-10-round-atcWhen showing just the ten round groups we see similar groups that do not line up as well as the others mostly the PPU offerings.  I feel compelled to remind again that the 10 shot group data for the Black Hills 69 had one excellent group of 8 rounds.

ammo-group-average-5-round-atcIn the five round groups we see the Black Hills is higher and is represented with a full sample size.

The barrel results are easier to read and compare.

5-round-group-average-atcI am leading off with the 5 shot groups as there are twice as many samples for them.  We also do not have any contamination in them.  The scale on this bar graph is at a very close examination.  There is only a difference of .04 moa over all the 5 round groups.  The three barrels all shot very well.

all-groups-average-atcWhen comparing all groups the criterion is about .05 moa tighter than both the BA and Larue offerings but this includes data for Black Hills 10 shot groups.

imageThe combined groups graph without Black Hills quickly shows off that I am a cave man that isn’t capable of simple computer tasks.  I couldn’t figure out how to put the numbers into the top and Ryan had actual things to do on a friday night. The figures are

Ballistic Advantage .584

Criterion .539

Larue .586

This doesn’t represent a huge change but it made me uncomfortable presenting data that was skewed.  I try to remind anyone looking at this that no groups were left out and any discrepancy from our method is noted.

10-round-group-average-atcTen shot groups with the BH data have been shown at a narrow range.  Remember that we are only looking at a difference of .11 moa from 1st to 3rd.

atc-10-shot-no-bhWithout Black Hills data again using my computer skills the values are

Ballistic Advantage .691

Criterion .607

Larue .660

The change from data containing all rounds and the data exluding the Black Hills 69 grain had no real change on the Ballistic Advantage or Larue barrels the Criterion had a shift from .5807 to .607.  This didn’t change much but is now representing a .09 moa change.

Below is each ammo broken down by barrel.  ppu-75gr-atc-barrel-data

asym-77gr-atc-barrel-data cbc-77gr-atc-barrel-data fgmm-77gr-atc-barrel-data imi-77gr-atc-barrel-data pmc-77gr-atc-barrel-dataaustralian-outback-69gr-atc-barrel-data black-hills-69gr-atc-barrel-data

It needs to be noted that the criterion 10 shot is mislabeled as a 10 shot when it is actually an 8 shot group.

 

ppu-69gr-atc-barrel-data

SLW Barrel Shootout – Australian Outback 69gr Ammo Performance

The ninth ammo we are posting the data for is Australian Outback 69gr HPBT Sierra MatchKing. Australian Outback isn’t as well known in the United States but this ammo is sure to turn some heads at around $0.55 a round (if you can find it in stock!). I was excited to see how it performed as it is a very budget friendly round.

All Chrono data was measured by a LabRadar Doppler Chronograph and the data was pulled from the strings saved to its SD card

All target measurements were done with OnTarget Precision Calculator software.


 

The Australian Outback 69gr shot an average of 2529.226667 fps between the 60 shots fired. Australian Outback 69gr had an Average Velocity about exactly in the center of the pack and had an Averaged Standard Deviation over 6 series of 10 shots of 28.99 FPS which was one of the highest SD’s recorded in testing. The graph below shows the shot to shot velocity of each string and also the average of each string at the end (data point 11). Further down is the raw data that this graph was generated from.

australian-outback-69gr-velocity-fps-16-barrel

Ballistic Advantage (Series 1) Ballistic Advantage (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2525.92 fps Stats – Average 2535.06 fps
Stats – Highest 2567.33 fps Stats – Highest 2576.53 fps
Stats – Lowest 2489.98 fps Stats – Lowest 2492.74 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 77.35 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 83.8 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 27.02 fps Stats – Std. Dev 23.82 fps
Shot ID V0 Shot ID V0
1 2545 14:49:34 1 2530 12:39:12
2 2490 14:49:46 2 2561 12:39:46
3 2502 14:49:57 3 2535 12:40:18
4 2521 14:50:12 4 2549 12:40:35
5 2558 14:50:26 5 2493 12:40:54
6 2567 14:50:43 6 2522 12:41:23
7 2549 14:50:54 7 2513 12:41:42
8 2512 14:51:06 8 2530 12:42:03
9 2500 14:51:18 9 2577 12:42:25
10 2515 14:51:34 10 2541 12:42:51
Criterion (Series 1) Criterion (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2518.03 fps Stats – Average 2561.27 fps
Stats – Highest 2569.23 fps Stats – Highest 2594.79 fps
Stats – Lowest 2442.99 fps Stats – Lowest 2523.6 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 126.23 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 71.19 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 36.89 fps Stats – Std. Dev 23.54 fps
Shot ID V0 Shot ID V0
1 2443 16:03:53 1 2552 15:10:52
2 2486 16:04:14 2 2542 15:11:26
3 2535 16:04:29 3 2567 15:11:43
4 2526 16:04:49 4 2524 15:12:02
5 2500 16:05:06 5 2565 15:12:21
6 2563 16:05:20 6 2590 15:13:17
7 2569 16:05:40 7 2595 15:13:38
8 2513 16:05:56 8 2560 15:14:05
9 2532 16:06:12 9 2582 15:14:22
10 2512 16:06:25 10 2536 15:14:38
LaRue (Series 1) LaRue (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2518.05 fps Stats – Average 2517.03 fps
Stats – Highest 2570.42 fps Stats – Highest 2560.76 fps
Stats – Lowest 2462.37 fps Stats – Lowest 2471.46 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 108.05 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 89.3 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 37.69 fps Stats – Std. Dev 24.95 fps
Shot ID V0 Shot ID V0
1 2549 17:41:54 1 2561 10:05:00
2 2570 17:42:10 2 2528 10:05:29
3 2565 17:42:23 3 2520 10:05:56
4 2494 17:42:39 4 2505 10:06:22
5 2525 17:42:51 5 2533 10:06:47
6 2536 17:43:11 6 2471 10:08:08
7 2516 17:43:24 7 2500 10:08:43
8 2494 17:43:36 8 2498 10:09:16
9 2470 17:43:49 9 2516 10:09:45
10 2462 17:44:03 10 2538 10:10:08

Next are the targets, each barrel shot one 10 round and 2 5 round groups for a total of 60 rounds fired. Barrel 1 had the smallest 5 round group of all the testing with a 0.99 MOA target and a 5 shot group average of 1.3325 MOA averaged between all 6 groups.

australian-outback-69-10-and-5-shot-watermark

SLW Barrel Shootout – PPU 69gr Ammo Performance

The tenth and final ammo we are posting the data for is PPU 69gr HP BT. PPU is well known for making a wide variety of ammo and their 69gr and 75gr offerings were some of the cheapest rounds we tested.

All Chrono data was measured by a LabRadar Doppler Chronograph and the data was pulled from the strings saved to its SD card

All target measurements were done with OnTarget Precision Calculator software.


 

The PPU 69gr shot an average of 2515.81 fps between the 60 shots fired. PPU 69gr had a fairly average velocity and had an Averaged Standard Deviation over 6 series of 10 shots of 32.58 FPS which was the highest SD of all the ammo’s tested. The graph below shows the shot to shot velocity of each string and also the average of each string at the end (data point 11). Further down is the raw data that this graph was generated from.

ppu-69gr-velocity-fps-16-barrel

Ballistic Advantage (Series 1) Ballistic Advantage (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2503.38 fps Stats – Average 2531.68 fps
Stats – Highest 2532.64 fps Stats – Highest 2688.87 fps
Stats – Lowest 2473.18 fps Stats – Lowest 2429.19 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 59.47 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 259.67 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 18.42 fps Stats – Std. Dev 66.17 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2498 14:33:03 1 2543 12:16:47
2 2490 14:33:17 2 2556 12:17:07
3 2532 14:33:29 3 2429 12:17:28
4 2533 14:33:40 4 2527 12:17:50
5 2509 14:33:52 5 2689 12:18:14
6 2502 14:34:02 6 2487 12:18:44
7 2494 14:34:11 7 2546 12:19:03
8 2510 14:34:24 8 2519 12:19:28
9 2473 14:34:34 9 2520 12:20:07
10 2492 14:34:48 10 2500 12:20:28
Criterion (Series 1) Criterion (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2503.09 fps Stats – Average 2522.76 fps
Stats – Highest 2572.39 fps Stats – Highest 2566.58 fps
Stats – Lowest 2467.13 fps Stats – Lowest 2468.93 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 105.26 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 97.65 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 34.55 fps Stats – Std. Dev 24.67 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2485 16:24:48 1 2567 16:00:47
2 2490 16:25:05 2 2528 16:01:08
3 2487 16:25:19 3 2518 16:01:26
4 2572 16:25:37 4 2531 16:01:47
5 2477 16:25:54 5 2527 16:02:05
6 2489 16:26:07 6 2469 16:02:31
7 2503 16:26:21 7 2541 16:02:48
8 2502 16:26:37 8 2523 16:03:03
9 2467 16:26:58 9 2513 16:03:17
10 2558 16:27:12 10 2512 16:03:31
LaRue (Series 1) LaRue (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2534.9 fps Stats – Average 2499.05 fps
Stats – Highest 2616.88 fps Stats – Highest 2529.64 fps
Stats – Lowest 2499.33 fps Stats – Lowest 2471.04 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 117.55 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 58.6 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 33.12 fps Stats – Std. Dev 18.55 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2554 17:08:45 1 2502 10:12:32
2 2525 17:08:59 2 2530 10:13:08
3 2513 17:09:14 3 2508 10:13:39
4 2532 17:09:30 4 2478 10:14:17
5 2506 17:09:47 5 2471 10:14:42
6 2530 17:10:01 6 2497 10:15:45
7 2541 17:10:15 7 2512 10:16:17
8 2532 17:10:31 8 2477 10:16:50
9 2617 17:10:46 9 2508 10:17:35
10 2499 17:11:00 10 2508 10:17:58

Next are the targets, each barrel shot one 10 round and 2 5 round groups for a total of 60 rounds fired. Barrel 1 had the smallest 5 round group of all the testing with a 0.929 MOA target and a 5 shot group average of 1.408167 MOA averaged between all 6 groups.

ppu-69-10-and-5-shot-watermark

SLW Barrel Shootout – Black Hills 69gr Ammo Performance

The eighth ammo we are posting the data for is Black Hills 69gr MatchKing HP. Black Hills is well known in the ammo industry and their 69gr load is one of the most popular.

All Chrono data was measured by a LabRadar Doppler Chronograph and the data was pulled from the strings saved to its SD card

All target measurements were done with OnTarget Precision Calculator software.


 

The Black Hills 69gr shot an average of 2583.093333 fps between the 60 shots fired. Black Hills 69gr had a higher than average velocity (kind of expected with a 69gr load) and had an Averaged Standard Deviation over 6 series of 10 shots of 21.16 FPS which was about average for all SD’s recorded in testing. The graph below shows the shot to shot velocity of each string and also the average of each string at the end (data point 11). Further down is the raw data that this graph was generated from.

black-hills-69gr-data

Ballistic Advantage (Series 1) Ballistic Advantage (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2605.77 fps Stats – Average 2585.56 fps
Stats – Highest 2633.3 fps Stats – Highest 2631.99 fps
Stats – Lowest 2583.06 fps Stats – Lowest 2541.58 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 50.24 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 90.42 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 18.78 fps Stats – Std. Dev 27.23 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2603 15:16:28 1 2632 13:11:21
2 2583 15:16:50 2 2570 13:11:36
3 2587 15:17:06 3 2601 13:11:58
4 2585 15:17:21 4 2585 13:12:16
5 2592 15:17:39 5 2554 13:12:35
6 2630 15:17:56 6 2580 13:13:31
7 2610 15:18:14 7 2576 13:13:51
8 2610 15:18:31 8 2612 13:14:17
9 2633 15:18:46 9 2603 13:14:32
10 2623 15:19:01 10 2542 13:14:51
Criterion (Series 1) Criterion (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2557.86 fps Stats – Average 2601.25 fps
Stats – Highest 2578.37 fps Stats – Highest 2626.95 fps
Stats – Lowest 2534.95 fps Stats – Lowest 2574.89 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 43.42 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 52.06 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 13.6 fps Stats – Std. Dev 16.72 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2578 15:39:16 1 2627 15:27:32
2 2553 15:39:36 2 2605 15:27:55
3 2543 15:41:29 3 2596 15:28:23
4 2535 15:41:43 4 2620 15:28:41
5 2563 15:41:58 5 2575 15:29:00
6 2559 15:42:15 6 2588 15:29:25
7 2561 15:42:34 7 2583 15:29:46
8 2574 15:42:48 9 2603 15:30:13
9 2547 15:43:03 10 2617 15:30:31
10 2565 15:43:15 11 2599 15:30:50
LaRue (Series 1) LaRue (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2583.57 fps Stats – Average 2564.55 fps
Stats – Highest 2617.97 fps Stats – Highest 2596.57 fps
Stats – Lowest 2531.79 fps Stats – Lowest 2524.69 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 86.18 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 71.88 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 26.08 fps Stats – Std. Dev 24.53 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2532 17:48:59 1 2573 10:43:32
2 2565 17:49:19 2 2571 10:44:00
3 2618 17:49:37 3 2554 10:44:32
4 2614 17:49:56 4 2583 10:45:03
5 2589 17:50:17 5 2569 10:45:32
6 2573 17:50:30 6 2542 10:46:35
7 2599 17:50:49 7 2536 10:46:53
8 2582 17:51:16 8 2595 10:47:18
9 2599 17:51:43 9 2597 10:47:40
10 2565 17:52:01 10 2525 10:48:00

Next are the targets, each barrel shot one 10 round(*) and 2 5 round groups for a total of 58 rounds fired on target. Barrel 1 had the smallest 5 round group of all the testing with a 0.969 MOA target and a 5 shot group average of 1.441 MOA averaged between all 6 groups.  Sadly this was the first 10 round group fired through the second barrel.  We failed to make the correction during the optic swap and the first two shots for the black hills are off paper.  All chronograph data was captured but we had to adjust and fire the remaining 8 rounds.

black-hills-69-10-and-5-shot-watermark

SLW Barrel Shootout – Federal Gold Medal Match 69gr Ammo Performance

The seventh ammo we are posting the data for is Federal Gold Medal Match 69gr (Also known as FGMM 69gr). This is the first of four 69gr offerings we tested and is the one of the most common ammo’s used for testing AR’s for accuracy. It is one of the most expensive ammo’s we tested as well and I was curious to see if its high price was equaled by high performance.

All Chrono data was measured by a LabRadar Doppler Chronograph and the data was pulled from the strings saved to its SD card

All target measurements were done with OnTarget Precision Calculator software.


 

The FGMM 69gr shot an average of 2608.214 fps between the 56 shots fired out of the 3 different 16″ barrels we tested. 4 shots of the test were lost when the Chronographs battery died (no fault of the equipment, just the operators lack of attention!) FGMM 69gr had one of the highest average velocities (just behind IMI 77gr and CBC 77gr) and had an Averaged Standard Deviation over 6 series of 10 shots of 17.94 FPS which was one of the lowest SD’s recorded. The graph below shows the shot to shot velocity of each string and also the average of each string at the end (data point 11). Further down is the raw data that this graph was generated from.

fgmm-69gr-velocity-fps-16-barrel

Ballistic Advantage (Series 1) Ballistic Advantage (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2598.21 fps Stats – Average 2639.29 fps
Stats – Highest 2633.84 fps Stats – Highest 2659.45 fps
Stats – Lowest 2569.29 fps Stats – Lowest 2596.47 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 64.55 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 62.98 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 21.94 fps Stats – Std. Dev 23.97 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2634 14:56:37 1 2644 12:54:15
2 2604 14:56:57 2 2650 12:54:41
3 2594 14:57:13 3 2659 12:58:43
4 2570 14:57:28 4 2628 12:59:23
5 2569 14:57:44 5 2596 12:59:41
6 2587 14:57:59 6 2659 13:00:01
7 2603 14:58:10
8 2622 14:58:27
9 2618 14:58:42
10 2581 14:58:58
Criterion (Series 1) Criterion (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2601.07 fps Stats – Average 2627.36 fps
Stats – Highest 2624.31 fps Stats – Highest 2661.87 fps
Stats – Lowest 2583.36 fps Stats – Lowest 2594.26 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 40.95 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 67.61 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 12.47 fps Stats – Std. Dev 19.53 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2607 16:40:00 1 2634 13:42:27
2 2583 16:40:20 2 2611 13:42:45
3 2587 16:40:34 3 2633 13:43:04
4 2599 16:40:50 4 2615 13:43:31
5 2616 16:41:01 5 2631 13:43:47
6 2604 16:41:13 6 2662 13:44:40
7 2599 16:41:27 7 2616 13:45:01
8 2594 16:41:47 8 2627 13:45:20
9 2624 16:41:57 9 2594 13:45:36
10 2597 16:42:09 10 2650 13:45:56
LaRue (Series 1) LaRue (Series 2)
Stats – Average 2616.67 fps Stats – Average 2579.2 fps
Stats – Highest 2634.91 fps Stats – Highest 2609.9 fps
Stats – Lowest 2592.94 fps Stats – Lowest 2558.99 fps
Stats – Ext. Spread 41.97 fps Stats – Ext. Spread 50.9 fps
Stats – Std. Dev 12.45 fps Stats – Std. Dev 17.27 fps
Shot ID V0 11/12/2016 Shot ID V0 11/13/2016
1 2606 16:51:03 1 2565 11:10:41
2 2623 16:51:23 2 2562 11:10:59
3 2605 16:51:38 3 2559 11:11:17
4 2624 16:51:54 4 2578 11:11:35
5 2622 16:52:10 5 2572 11:11:54
6 2612 16:52:24 6 2579 11:12:30
7 2620 16:52:43 7 2606 11:12:49
8 2593 16:52:57 8 2610 11:13:19
9 2635 16:53:17 9 2587 11:13:36
10 2627 16:53:31 10 2574 11:14:00

Next are the targets, each barrel shot one 10 round and 2 5 round groups for a total of 60 rounds fired. Barrel 1 had the smallest 5 round group of all the testing with a 0.998 MOA target and a 5 shot group average of 1.250333 MOA averaged between all 6 groups. The ammo performed well and was very consistent.

fgmm-69-10-and-5-shot-watermark