Hodgdon LilGun in .22 K-Hornet

Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by ReedG, May 19, 2013.

  1. ReedG

    ReedG Site $$ Contributor

    Nov 22, 2004
    Anyone have experience with LilGun in a .22 K-Hornet. Load data and the guy I got the rifle from say about 13.0 to 13.5 gr. with 40-gr. bullet with shoot "tiny groups". I started with 11.8 and worked up to 13.8 in .2-gr. increments. My first time at the range with 12 three-shot groups was a best of 4" at 50 yards. Went home, took off stock and checked out bedding, retorqued the screws and verified properly floated barrel. Took off the scope and put on one of my 36X Weavers. Went back to range with four three-shot loads of 12.8, 13.2 and 13.6. Sighted the scope with Hornet factory ammo which gave me three shots into .75" at 50 yds. without trying. Proceeded to shoot my four groups with a best of 3" at 50 yds. Literally can't get two shots in the same county! Something is wrong.

    Went home, did another set of four three-shot loads and back to the range with the Chrony, hoping it would show me something to help figure out the total lack of accuracy. First shot through the Chrony with 13.5 of LilGun behind 40-gr. Vmax showed 3,710 fps!! Great I'm thinking, now the Chrony is going crazy. Next shot was 3,690. I actually shot 10 rounds which were all over 3,600 and went into a 6" group at 100 yds. No pressure signs, no flattened primers, nothing.

    The only other powder I have on hand that will work in a K-Hornet is H4198. Went to the range the next day with a bunch of loads from 11.5 to 13.8 (all I can get in the case). These all Chrony'd between 2,300 and 2,800 with some three-shot groups at 100 yds. less than an inch.

    It seems something unusual is going on with the LilGun. Investigation shows that the cap of the Harrell's powder bottle is coated with powder and an oily substance. Also, inside the powder trickler is an oily coating and powder granules. This is not static cling, it is oily. Anybody every experience this?

    Attached Files:

  2. stacy

    stacy 2 TIMOTHY 2 VERUS 15 Site $$ Contributor

    Jan 6, 2012
    I shot 13.5 grs of LILGUN in a standard 22 hornet w/a 35gr HP berger that thing is bad on varmints
  3. LHSmith

    LHSmith Site $$ Contributor

    Feb 14, 2008
    I just bought some Lil Gun for a .221 Fireball with so-so results. I noticed the powder is a PITA to handle, but I attributed it to static and I remember flake powder being not too user friendly. In the future, I will not be putting it through my Harrells measure because of this.
  4. SeabeeKen


    Aug 12, 2012
    Never tried it in a K hornet but my Ruger in 22 Hornet loves the stuff. Seems to be a very potent powder.
  5. ARW

    ARW Site $$ Contributor

    May 24, 2006
    I also tried lilgun in my 221 Fireball, mostly because I read how others really liked it in that caliber. It shot ok but RL-7 was the better powder in my particular rifle. One thing I did notice was pressure really went up with only a small increase in powder charge with the lilgun.
  6. SeabeeKen


    Aug 12, 2012
    Lil-Gun is high energy stuff. I also hear it is hard on barrels when shooting quickly.
  7. BigDMT

    BigDMT Guest

    Just because someone else's rifle likes Lil Gun, doesn't mean yours will. If it shoots that bad, but good with factory ammo and 4198, then there's nothing wrong, your gun just won't shoot that powder.

    My hornet shot pretty decent with it, but the best accuracy in my rifle was with Alliant 2400.
  8. SmokinJoe

    SmokinJoe Site $$ Contributor

    Mar 19, 2008
    Something most reloaders don't know about Lil'Gun is that the coating on the powder grains will react with aluminum, maybe some other light metals, and it will react with acrylic as used for powder measure reservoirs on popular brand measures. That is why I quit using it, though I got pretty good results with it on target. For the hornets, I don't think you can do better than Alliant 300MP if you can find some. It is a very fine ball powder, even finer than AA1680, but has none of the oddball characteristics of LG, and the burn rate is perfect for the 22 Hornet type cartridges. If you can't find any of that, try some H110, 2400 or IMR4227, lots of hornet shooters like those also.
  9. Outrider27

    Outrider27 Site $$ Contributor

    Mar 24, 2010
    In addition to the above, within the limits of what you have on hand or can get locally, experiment with different brands of primer, including small pistol primers. Some Hornet/K Hornet shooters swear by the substitution of small pistol primers for accuracy loads with some powders. My K Hornet likes H4227 and CCI small rifle or Rem 7 1/2 primers, but you never know until you try. I've noticed that in their #14 reloading manual Speer switched to small pistol primers for all powders in the regular Hornet, though they still seem to use small rifle primers for the K Hornet loads (which appear in the pistol section because of the K Hornet Contender barrels).
  10. watercam

    watercam Site $$ Contributor

    Mar 28, 2008
    FWIW H110 is stellar in the Hornet...
  11. Rbreb13


    Mar 28, 2013
    I have KHornet in a Ruger 77/22 All Weather. Haven't tried Lil Gun. Mine seems to like H110 or AA1680 the best so I haven't had a reason to switch.
  12. Newtire


    Dec 7, 2014
    I see someone mentioned 300 mp as being a good powder for 22 k-hornet. Just wondering what your loads were.
  13. Nvreloader

    Nvreloader Site $$ Contributor

    Nov 1, 2012

    I run Lil-Gun powder in several standard and K Hornet rifle and pistols using 35 VMax bullets.
    I have found that it will do the job very nicely,
    Makes nice Black rainbows out of Starlings/Magpies and Flicker birds which are destroying the house,
    and around the ranch which are stealing the dog food. ;D


  14. Live2Ride

    Live2Ride Site $$ Contributor

    May 7, 2006
    My Ruger 77/22 with CPC barrel likes only small pistol primers. AA1680 with Bergers is my load.
  15. wapiti25

    wapiti25 Site $$ Contributor

    Jan 17, 2010
    Yes on Lil gun will leave an oily residue in the powder measure.

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