Much has been written and stated on this theme and much more could be, though it probably wouldn’t add much to our way of thinking … because “we know it all” anyway. Right? According to “some” that appears to be the attitude.
Several of my “early years” were invested in the formal study of the entire Bible, Theology, Christian Education and Practical Ministries (Pastoral, Missions and Evangelism), but it wasn’t until I engaged in those activities, and made practical application of those “tools”, that my true understanding and maturity developed exponentially. The same method applies to most professional work and activities. Because I was fascinated with the heavens, I wanted to see what was “up there”! That resulted in intense study of manuals on how to build your own telescope… that actually resulted in building four reflecting Newtonians (mirror type): three 10″ diameter parabolic mirrors, and finished a fourth 10″ for a friend, a 4.25″ RFT, and finally, a 12.5″ compound Dall-Kirkham (modified Cassegrain). The first 10″ was made from a 1″ thick porthole glass that worked but was not a resounding success because it wasn’t made of Pyrex and not thick enough to be stable under extreme temperatures. The others worked fine and actually gave better viewing than my current commercial 8″ Celestron Cassegrain because they gathered much more light and gave better resolution. But I didn’t learn “all that” on day one! It was a process, but I set the standards high and went for “big bore” mirrors! Newtonian and Cassegrains are mirror-type telescopes just like the biggest in professional observatories. Usually, beginners of telescope making start with a 6″ Pyrex blank.
< The 8″ commercial Celestron has a combination of optics involving an 8″ front lens, an 8″ front surface concave mirror at the back end, another convex mirror attached to the front lens on the inside which magnifies the image sent back through a hole in the center of the main mirror that in turn is reflected by a prism or flat mirror at 90 degrees to the eyepiece(s) at the back for viewing. The main front lens and two optical mirrors must have a total optical correction of better than 1/8th wavelength for all light rays gathered by the 8″ optical front lens and mirrors to form a sharp image that can be magnified by up to 400 x without distortion. Of course, much depends on the lack of turbulence in the atmosphere (which is also a lens) on a given night. But on rare occasions I’ve been able to use my own home-built 10″ telescopes to 600x in the observation of Saturns rings and Jupiter’s belts, spots and moons casting their shadows on the surface of its “clouds”.
Applying that methodology to analysis of rifle ballistics, it’s plain that levels of knowledge and experience prevail. And it’s also plain that the degree of precision in the analysis of ballistics doesn’t compare with that called for in optics, astronomical or otherwise. The astro mirrors I made – all six of them – had to be ground to a perfect concave sphere, polished and corrected to a perfect parabolic form – within a minimum of 1/8 wavelength of light throughout their entire surfaces, to bring all light collected to a sharp focus of an image. Eyepieces of various magnifications were then used for viewing. Mine, on average, were better than 1/10 wavelength. There are instruments and methodology for doing that. 1/10 wavelength of yellow light is: 1/10th of about 580 nonometers, or 58 nanometers. A nonometer is 1 billionth of a meter (American sp.).
I mention this to say that whether it be biblical knowledge and application, telescope knowledge and application or rifle ballistics and application, I have used the same methodology, and then ask the question: “DOES IT WORK?” For example: “Did God really answer prayer given by faith in HIM?” – as per biblical instructions. Did the instructions I received in manuals for the construction of reflecting telescopes actually get the job done – DID IT WORK?
Directions and instructions given (M.div. in theology for example) are “tools” that are “interpreted” through application! So the application of a “tool” causes maturity in understanding, and is a PROCESS!
For some it’s a looooong process, for others: much shorter! It’s been said: “It’s better to sharpen the axe before you cut the wood!”, or words to the same effect.
By nature, I’m an analyst – so “they” tell me…
So, I started with Lyman as my first book on reloading, and Speer my second (which I still have). Lyman was used for my first handloading exparience – a .30-06, and Speer # 11 (Omark Industries, Inc. 1987) for my first .45-70 – a load right from page 316, and 56 grains of H322 (as in telescope making – I started “big”, with large aspirations). So that didn’t give me their results (1886 fps from an 1895 Marlin, 22″), so I added one grain more and got an average of 1865 fps that became my load… I killed my first bear with that “almost” book load! And I used the Speer 400gr bullet!
My method was: Instructions and experience. Then: “Did it work?” < The proof!
When we find out what “works”, and why, we mature from childhood to adolesence, then on to young adulthood, etc. I don’t read my bibles much anymore because I know too much already! Two exceptions being: when I want to hear directly “from above” a message for the day, or future, and reminders of biblical truth because I’m forgetful of lessons learned! Same with reloading manuals. It’s been a few years since I’ve bought one… but the new Speer interests me for the sake of the .35 Whelen and “new” powders, so I go online for that.
But God has given us a gift of eternal life through His SON, Jesus Christ. BUT… we only know the TRUTH about that through “the manual” he has also given… the BIBLE! And today, a vast majority of the “western world” don’t know what’s in it because it’s been “put down” by so-called “well educated” people who, themselves, don’t know what’s in it!
The BIBLE is a good manual for life and eternity, but it does no good it it only collects dust! Much the same as anyone reading Hornady’s manual when they don’t even own a rifle, and are negative about that!
I read the Bible through from the first verse to the last when I was 12 years old. And that was in the King James Version. And that wasn’t the last time I read it through.I believed it then and I’m more convinced than ever “that it works”, from experience over 3/4s of a century!
< That’s my wife, Adrienne, on the left of a couple I united in marriage in 1965. We visited with them in the Montreal area on our return trip from the celebration of our 60th anniversary in New Brunswick in the summer of 2017. He became pastor of the French congregation in Montreal when we moved to Ontario in 1975. When he retired a few years ago, they moved north of Montreal where we visited them. They remained faithful to each other, and in love until she died of cancer late last year. She was always a great support to Pierre and a very positive person due to her faith in the LORD. And Pierre also, he misses her greatly but is thankful for their many years together – and one day soon they’ll be together again! DOES IT WORK?
Anyone, whatever their credentials, who wants to debate “signs” of pressure in stating “It ain’t possible” – after handloading for 43 years a good variety of cartridges, and several rifles in many of those cartridges, I will say “signs” are VERY important!
Currently, after five firings of the same cases in .35 Whelen using increased loads of CFE 223 from 65 grains to 69 grains, I’ve measured the heads and length of those cases after each firing. There has been slight growth in the brass but still within specs without trimming, and CHE is still slightly less than a max load of RL-17, which in itself is a safe load. These are the same cases, starting from new, never previously fired. All fired primers look identical, no soot blowing back around case necks, etc. I could safely use these same cases for another three to five firings with the same load. How do I know that? From experience!< .35 Whelen “stuff”! On the left – those were new cases, now fired five times. They will be used again. On the right – in the back corner are six reloads reserved for hunting. That will be their second firing. They are loaded with the 225gr AccuBonds over 69 grains of CFE 223. They are primed by WLRM. COL is 3.45″, and expected MV should be the same as when previously tested at 2835 fps MV. In the front right are three once fired, and three loaded with the 225gr Nosler Partitions. That will be their second firing at about 2770 fps MV.
How do I know my Father in Heaven answers my prayers/ hears me when I talk with Him? From experience! As someone responded to the query: “How do you know God exists?” Immediate response: “I talked with Him this morning!”
And as I responded to an atheist who challenged a small group of Christian men with:”God doesn’t answer prayer because he doesn’t exist!” My immediate reply: “You would have to be God to know that he doesn’t exist!” Obviously, an impossible proposition!
So, which is more important: Knowing a rifles ballistics or personally knowing God? Wanting empirical evidence for the existence of God is both normal and available to those who are genuine in their search. And equally so for those who want empirical evidence that a particular load from a manual is fully trustworthy in a new rifle-cartridge project.
How would you determine each?
My methodology (again): First: Instruction, Second: experience, then: “DOES IT WORK?”<It worked for him – son Brent. My handloads in his .356 Winchester .
Til the next…