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Author Topic: Chronograph Recommendations  (Read 379 times))

Offline rr_shooter

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Chronograph Recommendations
« on: March 25, 2021, 10:28:47 AM »
I searched through the site and was surprised the most recent discussion on this topic was a few years ago.  With advances in technology and new products coming out, I thought there might be new recommendations and opinions on the topic.

Yesterday, the LCD on my ProChrono Pal started acting up.  The middle “leaf” in the tens place on the display wasn’t showing up on the power up self-test.  This meant I couldn’t tell if it was reading “0” or “80”.  Guess it’s time for a new chrony,

I think I want to stay away from the inexpensive models, such as those on AliExpress or Banggood.  I know some members have had good luck with them, but I’m afraid of shooting out the legs with an opening that small.  On top of that, there’s no way I can see to export the data, so I’d have to manually write down the numbers (something that bugs me with my Pal).

I also want to stay away from a chrony that attaches to the barrel, such as a Combro or Magneto.  I think that might make cocking a break-barrel or underlever difficult, if not impossible.

On the other end, I really like what I’m reading about the FX chrony.  I like the fact that the chance of accidently shooting it is practically zero, but I don’t know if I want to shell out $200.  I’m looking for something in the $75 - $150 range.
I’ve been looking at both the Caldwell (~$85) and the ProChrono DLX (~$125).  The Caldwell uses a wired connection with your phone for a remote display, whereas the ProChrono is Bluetooth enabled.  Both appear to let you include photos of your groups, but the ProChrono has the feature to call out your velocities (similar to the FX). The app for Caldwell hasn’t had an update in nearly five years, so support may be a concern.

Any thoughts/opinions/recommendations on these two (or other brands/models) would be appreciated.
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Offline Deerstalker

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2021, 10:41:31 AM »
I purchased the Caldwell Chronograph and IMO it is an excellent unit for airgun testing.  The chrono comes with a 25' audio cable that plugs into the iPhone/iPad so that you have a data file of your tests that look like the one attached.  The Caldwell chrono does not store your shots only shows the current one.  The unit is easy to setup/use & requires a 9 VDC battery.  You should be able to get the unit for about $100.  Hope this helps.

My chrono data from my iPad.

Thursday, March 25, 2021
HW95L .22 (stock) FPS Pellet testing. 
Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph & iPad APP

Created: 03/21/21 11:08 AM
Description: 10 shot test for H&N FTT 14.66 gr Notes 1: 25 yard target
Notes 2: Distance to Chrono(FT): 5.00
Ballistic Coefficient: 0.021
Bullet Weight(gr): 14.66
Temp: 51 °F cloudy day
BP: 1030.00 in Hg
Altitude: 495 feet, Cary, NC 27511

Shot #      FPS        FT-LBS         PF
10          679         15.01      9.95   
9           694         15.68      10.17 
8         692         15.59       10.14 
7           691         15.55       10.13 
6          688         15.41       10.09 
5           695         15.73       10.19 
4           681         15.10        9.98   
3          687         15.37       10.07 
2           694         15.68       10.17 
1           686         15.32       10.06 

Average: 688.7 FPS
SD: 5.5 FPS
Min: 679 FPS
Max: 695 FPS
Spread: 16 FPS
Shot/sec: 0.0
True MV: 702 FPS
Group Size (in): 0.00
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Offline Tncsse

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2021, 10:54:39 AM »
I’ll 2nd the Caldwell.  I purchased late last year. Connected to my iPhone or iPad via the cable no issues. The downloaded app works fine on both iPhone and iPad and give read outs like mentioned above. I will say though that I had to disassemble the light bars and reattach and tighten the connection for the power to the light bar. Poor CQ in my opinion.
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Offline SteveP-52

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2021, 11:34:45 AM »
Airgun Accessories Gate. You should be able to find any number of posts on them:

https://www.gatewaytoairguns.org/GTA/index.php?board=109.0
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Offline avator

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2021, 11:39:12 AM »
1 vote for the ProChrono DLX.
Grab the UV light kit while you're at it.
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Offline nervoustrigger

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2021, 12:34:53 PM »
I alternate between these 3:
 
1. Prochrono
2. FX
3. generic Aliexpress clamp-on type
 
If I need to save the string, I generally go with the Prochrono.  I made a USB adapter for about $10 to retrieve the strings onto my PC and that works well for my purposes.  The Prochrono seldom misses a shot, and it even works well at night with a cheap LED puck placed on each  diffuser.
 
I'm lukewarm on the FX.  It's finicky about its distance from the muzzle and it goes through batteries like candy.  Though once you figure out the settings and proper physical placement, it works nicely.  Getting an audible from the phone is a feature I never would have guessed I would like so much.  Since it has no built-in readout, I have reservations about software support 5 years down the road.
 
For impromptu chronograph work, I grab the generic clamp-on.  Its convenience alone makes it worth the infinitesimal price of admission.  If I had to fiddle with the FX or drag out the tripod to do a quick run over the Prochrono, I would....well, I just wouldn't.  I can get a quick reading in about 30 seconds with the clamp-on, even at night which is pretty frequently the case for me.  The other thing I like about it is the fact it never misses a reading.  Never is a strong word but it's the accurate word.  So for checking a regulated PCP for potential creep symptoms, I can't risk missing the first shot after it has sat idle overnight.  Using the clamp-on is a 100% assurance of catching it.
 
To summarize, my advice for you would be to get a decent full-size conventional chronograph like the Prochrono DLX (Bluetooth) or Caldwell to cover your stated priorities, and add one of the clamp-ons if and when you find yourself thinking "I'd like to check the velocity but I really don't feel like dragging out the chrony right now."
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Offline oldpro

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« Last Edit: March 25, 2021, 01:32:36 PM by oldpro »
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Offline 19Sheridan57

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2021, 01:35:05 PM »
   Caldwell
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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2021, 01:35:50 PM »
Moving to Acc. gate.
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Offline rr_shooter

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2021, 02:22:54 PM »
Thanks for the responses, everyone.

Jason - you seem to own examples from all the options in my post.  Have you found them all to be fairly consistent in their measurements?
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Offline nervoustrigger

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Re: Chronograph Recommendations
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2021, 02:39:09 PM »
I did compare the cheapie to the ProChrono and they agreed closely.  In fact, the extent to which they differed was a barely noticeably lower reading on the ProChrono and I chalked that up to the 2nd sensor being somewhat further from the muzzle as a consequence of the chronograph’s size. 

I haven’t done a comparison with the FX. 
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