Hornady ELD BC Update

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Hornady ELD BC Update

Post by stokesrj » Tue May 15, 2018 8:11 am

We have seen manufacturers update their published ballistic coefficients from time to time, almost always reducing them to reflect more accurate performance in the face of growing user capabilities to discern the exaggerated marketing based claims. However, Hornady has taken a completely different path with their ELD-X and ELD Match bullets recently. As it turns out, they have been able to confirm superior performance as some of these bullets moved from prototype to high volume manufacturing. The BC's improved.

Sierra has been at the forefront of publishing data that more fully reveals their bullets flight characteristics as the velocity changes. They have long published BCs that change as the velocity changes. This has often made me wonder how some people claim to simply plug the manufacturers BC into a ballistic computer, dial in the solution in their scopes turrets and make a center hit at 1,000, or even 1,500 yards. My experiences have been far different with dozens of bullets, scopes, and ballistic calculators. Often the difference is measured only in inches at moderate ranges but quickly changes to feet at extended ranges. Either those who claim this are lucky, or wishful, or I'm just plain unlucky. I almost always have to adjust the bullets BC to achieve center hits at extended range and almost always it is revealed that the bullets published BC is overly optimistic.

The Hornady ELD-X bullets have been the closest to published BCs of any manufacturer I have tested with my Lab Radar but that is only part of the puzzle because my Lab Radar can only measure the BC at short range. I would still get different results at say 1,000 yards.

But recently Hornady has published revised BC's but also published the BC's at different velocities. I think this helps explain why I would get different results in the field than what the ballistic calculators would previously indicate with the single BC value. I don't know for sure this will completely explain the differences; most people seem to think it was simply an atmospheric data error or something similar that causes the difference. However, I think this is hog wash since I have repeatedly checked and rechecked those data entries and purposely changed them to what would be required to see the differences in field performance I have observed. This could simply not have been the case. Now, perhaps with the added data Hornady has provided I might be able to come closer to the truth. Take a look for yourself. Perhaps our knowledge will continue to improve.

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Re: Hornady ELD BC Update

Post by Ado » Tue May 15, 2018 2:27 pm

That is really useful information. I have new boxes of 6.5 ELD-M 147gr and ELD-X 143gr bullets and will be working up loads albeit at a snails pace...once I get my new KKC stock glass bedded and then up and running...

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Re: Hornady ELD BC Update

Post by 7x57 » Tue May 15, 2018 4:19 pm

Thanks Bob that's very useful and interesting information. I use ELD-M in my 6.5x47 and am very impressed with performance. So far only shot out to 500 but with incredible accuracy. Noticed the 108gr 6mm has impressive figures and might be worth trying in the Dasher that I have just built.

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Re: Hornady ELD BC Update

Post by deerhunter338mag » Wed May 16, 2018 7:09 am

Will take me sometime to come around to them as I’m a Berger man through and through. But thanks for the information Bob was extremely interesting.
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Re: Hornady ELD BC Update

Post by Joe338ST » Wed May 16, 2018 9:10 am

That is interesting stuff there. Sierra has published different BCs for different velocity brackets in the past to give more accurate ballistic calculations for their bullet paths. I thought it was because the bullet shape changed as the speed melted the plastic tips and hence reducing the BC...and that was also the reason Hornady developed the ELD range as they felt the polymers in the A-Max bullets were melting at high velocities. But come to think of it the Sierra bullets I used in the past were all copper jacket bullets and should not have suffered from distortion....Still Sierra published the different BCs for various speed brackets. Something certainly goes on with BC changing due to bullet distortion perhaps at different speeds....I wonder if Berger will go on the same path....

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