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  #1  
Old 07-15-2017, 8:37 PM
Lamski Lamski is offline
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Default Starter Chronograph options for new reloader?

What is a good starter chronograph for working up a load? One that will hopefully not break the bank. I know its a useful tool when you need it but once load development is done I would hate to have a $400 piece of equipment sitting on the shelf collecting dust. Those cheaper Caldwell ones do a good enough job? Or is the money spent on a nicer unit worth it?
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  #2  
Old 07-15-2017, 8:54 PM
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We used a Caldwell G2 this morning indoors. Worked great. We did 12 different loads (two 5-shot series each) in about an hour.
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Old 07-16-2017, 1:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DueceMcGurk View Post
We used a Caldwell G2 this morning indoors. Worked great. We did 12 different loads (two 5-shot series each) in about an hour.
I am glad to hear that. I have a CED Competition Electronics Pro Digital but I have my eyes on a Caldwell G2 as well.

It just looked good and I liked that it is upside down and has a built in light that can be used indoors. I am looking forward to going to the indoor range and trying it out.


Lamski: if you are new to reloading and looking for a Chrono you have to decide what you want to spend.

MANY entry Chronos are some of the orignal Paintball Chronies that sell for about $120 or so and are called SHOOTING CHRONY
https://ads.midwayusa.com/s?targetLo...temsPerPage=48

They are not bad and they have different colors/models based on what you want to do, some have detachable face or built in light, others might not.

These are entry level if you are not sure. The RED one is what I used and what a lot of folks use. This is the one that people are ALWAYS shooting in the face...

After that you have CED, PACT, and a few others including the Ballistic G2 made by Caldwell.
https://ads.midwayusa.com/s?targetLo...temsPerPage=48

There is ALSO another chrony called a Magneto Speed that attaches to a revolver barrel or rifle barrel, but you gotta talk to the company FIRST and buy the correct setup or parts.

Finally, there is the LABRADAR that will run you about $500+ but is really cool. No lights needed, just turn it on and set it near you. Sadly though, I think that it has the ability to pick up other shots near you.

Personally speaking, the Caldwell Ballistic G2 Chrono is probably a very good chrony that you can get that is considered cheap (at around $200) and it is supposedly simple to use and pretty accurate.

This is the one that I am going to be buying. Currently I have a Competition Electronics Pro Digital. It is okay, but you need to have it in the sunlight. If you run it inside, it will not necessarily pick up your shots. I paid about $150 for it but I am going to be selling it soon. (shameless plug)

If you want to check your load data and see that the velocity is matching up with your forecasted data, then you absolutely need to have a chrono to tell you the velocity.
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  #4  
Old 07-16-2017, 4:49 AM
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These can probably still be had for about $100 on sale, but these F1 chornos are ~$109 right now (plus shipping):
https://ads.midwayusa.com/product/53...SABEgJzfPD_BwE

This is the one I have.
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Old 07-16-2017, 5:00 AM
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I have a ProChrono Digital chronograph (https://www.amazon.com/Competition-E...chrono+digital) and a cheap tripod that works just fine (https://www.amazon.com/AmazonBasics-...eywords=Tripod)

I set it up 5 to 10 feet out from the muzzle, and it works great. You'll have to pay more to get a set up that will work indoors.
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Old 07-16-2017, 5:43 AM
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Old 07-16-2017, 7:17 AM
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I have tge MagnetoSpeed. It's expensive, but it works well indoors with SOME firearms. It attaches to your barrel, so you don't have to set up and retrieve it from downrange, and doesn't depend on light. It works best with rifles and longer barreled revolvers. It doesn't play well with short barreled revolvers, and you have to get an adapter to work with semi-autos. I would NOT start with this one unless you have to shoot where you can't set up one of the tri-pod based units.
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Old 07-16-2017, 7:22 AM
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F1 chrono it's compact, light weight, accurate and always on sale.
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  #9  
Old 07-16-2017, 7:52 AM
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I use the Competition Electronics ProChrono Digital Chronograph with the blue tooth adapter. Works well.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:03 AM
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I have an Oehler that I have had many years. It is the model 33. The newer ones(model 35's) have a 3rd screen and are top of the line.

The Oehler Chrono's are one of the original if not the original makers of Chrono's for testing ammo. They are excellent with separate sky screens and electronics which helps since the screens are cheap to replace if hit by a poor shoot. They are not cheap though. For a long time they quite selling to the public but started to again a few years back for about $600.

I believe the cheaper brands work well now also. But most have the electronic built into the screens and this makes them harder to read from a distance for me especially in bright sunlight. Also if you hit them with a bullets you need a new unit usually.
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  #11  
Old 07-16-2017, 1:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mayor McRifle View Post
I have a ProChrono Digital chronograph (https://www.amazon.com/Competition-E...chrono+digital) and a cheap tripod that works just fine (https://www.amazon.com/AmazonBasics-...eywords=Tripod)

I set it up 5 to 10 feet out from the muzzle, and it works great. You'll have to pay more to get a set up that will work indoors.
I've had that ProChrono in my Amazon cart for about a year and I think I may go with that one unless I can get a nicer one for around $100 or so.
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Old 07-16-2017, 2:37 PM
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I have the Chrony with the remote readout. Works well. Can stay at the bench to obtain data. Anything with skyscreens is going to be lighting sensitive.
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Old 07-16-2017, 2:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mayor McRifle View Post
I have a ProChrono Digital chronograph (https://www.amazon.com/Competition-E...chrono+digital) and a cheap tripod that works just fine (https://www.amazon.com/AmazonBasics-...eywords=Tripod)

I set it up 5 to 10 feet out from the muzzle, and it works great. You'll have to pay more to get a set up that will work indoors.
I have this unit plus the bluetooth module that transmits to my phone all the data which can be dloaded to my computer in an Excel format. This is a very good unit..
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  #14  
Old 07-16-2017, 3:05 PM
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I have a caldwell model that can use my phone as remote, came with lights for use indoors - which is the only place I've used it.
Works well - the lot including a ceapo tripod ~$100 IIRC
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Old 07-16-2017, 3:07 PM
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I have the Caldwell as well. It works great and is inexpensive.
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Old 07-16-2017, 5:15 PM
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Any of these in the $100 range would be appropriate to start with. I started with the F1 shooting chrony
Pretty basic with few bells and whistles but gives you the info you need. I upgraded to a shooting chrony with more features. Pm me if you want, prob going to sell the F1 soon
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Old 07-16-2017, 11:19 PM
Lamski Lamski is offline
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I ended up ordering the Caldwell Premium kit. It comes with the tripod, IR LED light kit for indoor use, carry bag, and I can connect my phone to it. I really wanted the ProChrono but to get the Bluetooth kit and IR LED kit would have been a substantial additional cost. The Caldwell seemed to have a lot of features for the money.


https://smile.amazon.com/Caldwell-Ba...ll+chronograph
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Old 07-17-2017, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lamski View Post
I ended up ordering the Caldwell Premium kit. It comes with the tripod, IR LED light kit for indoor use, carry bag, and I can connect my phone to it. I really wanted the ProChrono but to get the Bluetooth kit and IR LED kit would have been a substantial additional cost. The Caldwell seemed to have a lot of features for the money.


https://smile.amazon.com/Caldwell-Ba...ll+chronograph

Yeah it would be nice if the G2 came with a cable that you could use instead of bluetooth connection.

That caldwell looks nice though.

My funds are gone. I just picked up an H4N Pro for $97.00 and it looks brand new. Even has the box. It is not a chrono though. I just hope it makes my guns sound better in my videos though.
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  #19  
Old 07-17-2017, 1:25 AM
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another caldwell user here.

btw, mini thread hijack here,
Does yours pick up readings from the guy next lane?
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  #20  
Old 07-17-2017, 4:55 AM
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I have the red Chrony with remote display, it works fine most of the time but is lighting sensitive of course. It's particularly nice on overcast days, just set it up and shoot over it without the screens.

Were I to do it again I'd pick up a Magneto Speed. I live in a city, it's a 5 hour round trip to drive to BLM and even then, my spots are rather limited during the summer. If I want to do any load development it's pretty well going to take the entire day and I'm limited in what I take (since I have to carry it all in). I have local ranges I can go to but I don't want to fiddle with the chrony during a ceasefire or chance having someone else shoot my chrony.
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  #21  
Old 07-18-2017, 8:37 AM
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Be mindful that most of the chronies mentioned in this thread are not very accurate and will give you false ES's if you take then too seriously. Every test done that I have seen puts the 35p and the Magnetospeed at the top, and everything else FAR behind. Some chronos are so bad, you are probably better off not using them at all. My prochrono and my son's shooting chrony are not even in the same universe with the 35p when it comes to accurate readings.

Brian Litz is recognized as having done the best comparison of modern chronos to date. It is an interesting read id you have the time;

http://www.appliedballisticsllc.com/...aphChapter.pdf
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  #22  
Old 07-19-2017, 6:19 AM
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I have a Chrony Alpha Master. It is actually decent as far as providing relatively accurate data. But I switched to a Labradar last year when I started developing loads again for the first time in several years.

Where I shoot now, the Chrony simply does not pick up the bullet in the lighting conditions on the range in the morning.

I have a Labradar now.

Note: My Chrony is still available for sale: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/s....php?t=1244095
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