Centerfire Rifle Cartridge Reloading Energy Calculations:
Rifle recoil and bullet energy, is a byproduct of the propulsion force generated by the powder charge held within a metallic rifle cartridge. The physical event of recoil energy occurs when a powder charge is detonated within a rifle barrel, resulting in the conversion of chemical energy held within the powder charge into thermodynamic energy.
This energy is then transferred to the base of the bullet and to the rear of the cartridge or breech, propelling the firearm rearward into the rifle shooter while the rifle bullet is propelled forward down the rifle barrel until it exits out the muzzle.
The forward moving bullet energy can be calculated easily,
simple formula; velocity x velocity x bullet weight = ?;
divided by 450,340 = bullet kinetic energy in foot pounds.
The rearward rifle energy can be calculated easily as well, which is free recoil and designated as foot pounds of recoil energy.
Simply put the law of physics says for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. In light of that fact it is more than fair to say that all bullets of equal weight and velocity should recoil the same.
However, there is an acceleration time frame chemically engineered into all reloading powders that cannot be ignored either and that acceleration time frame equates into what a shooter feels on his shoulder or felt recoil. Did you achieve full acceleration of bullet to peak velocity in 6″ of rifle barrel or 26″ of rifle barrel as this equates into the recoil factor.
Rifle Recoil Calculator:
Everyone that handloads rifle cartridges for their rifles is always faced with the problem of wondering how much recoil will be produced by their individual rifle from their handloaded ammunition.
Here is a rifle recoil calculator formula that will get you close to your own pet rifle load recoil if not exact. This method of calculating recoil is based on the energy of the powder used and not velocity, also beings not all powders possess the same chemical kinetic energy this formula will not be 100% but it will be very, very close.
Also you will note that when using this formula you will find that even though you will have velocity levels the same between handloads it will reflect that there is a difference in actual recoil between them.
Step 1: Add the weight of your powder and bullet together expressed in grains.
Step 2: Now multiply this number by the weight of the powder.
Step 3: Now take the weight of the rifle in pounds and decimal fraction of pounds and multiply that number by 80.
Step 4: Now divide the number you got in Step 2 by the number you got in Step 3. The answer will be foot pounds of recoil energy.