For 2016, Hornady has unleashed a bunch of exciting new products- two that I’m particularly excited about are the new Lock-N-Load Iron press (I will be covering that in detail shortly!) and the new line of bullets including ELD-X and ELD Match bullets. I just got my hands on some ELD-X bullets, and I’m really looking forward to loading and then shooting these bullets in the Ruger Precision Rifle.
So what is ELD-X? This acronym stands for “Extremely Low Drag, Expanding”. In layman’s terms, Hornady has created a bullet that combines some of the great attributes and features of both match bullets and hunting bullets into a single bullet design. The key breakthrough in this new product was the material science and unique scientific experiments that yielded what Hornady calls the “Heat Shield” tip. Based on extensive testing using doppler radar, Hornady determined that polymer tips (on bullets such as AMAX and all other conventional polymer tips in the industry) would melt when pushed to super high velocities. Literally like a space capsule re-entering the atmosphere. With these findings in hand, Hornady focused on developing a new material for their plastic tips that could be pushed way further in velocity before being compromised. The performance benefits are two-fold: higher BC and consistency due to the polymer tip, and higher usable velocities due to the heat shield.
Here’s a picture showing the new ELD-X 143 grain 6.5mm bullet next to an AMAX 140 grain 6.5mm bullet:
On the outside, the biggest difference (other than dimensions) is the color of the polymer tip. These new ELD-X (and ELD Match) tips are darker in color, and are more translucent. What you can’t see in this picture is the internal design which makes ELD-X a true hunting bullet. The design is optimized so that it expands through the entire internal penetration path.
I just got these bullets, so I haven’t had a chance to load any or shoot any- but stay tuned because I’ll be doing that very shortly!