4DOF Ballistic Calculator

Is the Hornady 4DOF calculator merely marketing hype?

Recently, the Hornady 4DOF Trajectory calculator has been labelled by Applied Ballistics LLC. (AB) as being nothing more than marketing hype, lacking data for predictions and being inaccurately described in its capabilities.....click here for the full response from Hornady.

Should I use the Standard Ballistics Calculator or the 4DOF Ballistic Calculator?


Using the Standard Ballistics Calculator:

The Hornady Standard Ballistics Calculator uses BCs (G1 or G7 ballistic coefficients) to calculate trajectory and is ideal for traditional hunting and varmint bullets at close to moderate distance. For more precise long range calculations using select low-drag precision bullets, check out the Hornady 4DOF Ballistic Calculator.

Using the 4DOF™ Ballistic Calculator:

The Hornady 4DOF Ballistic Calculator provides trajectory solutions based on projectile Drag Coefficient (not ballistic coefficient) along with the exact physical modeling of the projectile and its mass and aerodynamic properties. Additionally, it calculates the vertical shift a bullet experiences as it encounters a crosswind; referred to as aerodynamic jump.

The use of drag coefficients, projectile dynamics, aerodynamic jump and spin drift enable the Hornady 4DOF Ballistic Calculator to accurately measure trajectories, even at extreme ranges. It is ideal for both long range and moderate distances and is available for the low-drag precision bullets listed in the drop down menu of the calculator. For calculating trajectories of traditional hunting and varmint bullets using BCs (ballistic coefficients), please use our Standard Ballistics Calculator.

Why aren't there more bullets in the Hornady® 4DOF™ database?

Hornady technicians will continue to add Hornady projectiles and other bullet brands to the database. Testing is time consuming, but rest assured, there will be more projectiles added to the library.

Why aren’t all Hornady® bullets (A-MAX®, SST®, V-MAX®, GMX®, InterLock® etc.) in the 4DOF™ database?

For typical hunting, varmint and match bullets shot to conventional distances, traditional Ballistic Coefficient (BC) based ballistic calculators are perfectly adequate for calculating trajectory. The Hornady 4DOF calculator separates itself from BC based calculators when shooting at extended range with what Hornady considers truly match accurate, low-drag style projectiles with a G1 BC over .500, including Hornady ELD-X, ELD Match and Hornady BTHP Match bullets, as well as certain competitors' products.

There is a considerable amount of time invested in data collection for any one bullet. Thus, in order to be considered for Doppler radar testing and inclusion in the Hornady 4DOF database, bullets must have either Heat Shield or finished metal tips (BTHP), be truly match accurate, and have a G1 BC over .500. When considering a hunting bullet, it must exhibit excellent terminal performance at both conventional and extended ranges. Bullets that don't meet all these prerequisites won’t be included in the Hornady 4DOF library.

How much more accurate is the 4DOF calculator over a standard BC-based ballistics calculator?

This video interview by outdoor writer, Richard Mann and Hornady Engineer, Jayden Quinlin, explains the answer.


What is Axial Form Factor? What is it doing?

For some time, the "standard practice" within the shooting sports industry has been to use a fixed Ballistic Coefficient (BC), or drag simulation, for any given projectile. It has always been assumed that the BC/Drag Coefficient (Cd) of the projectile was the BC of the projectile no matter what. Recent work with Doppler radar...click here to read more.