Precision Hand Loading For Long Range-Chapter Two: Bullet Prep
About those meplats. What is “meplat”? It is the personal present tense act of an individual platting or braiding a three-fold cord. Just kidding. We already learned the meplat is essentially the point of the bullet. So why are we concerned with them? Consistency of course. Dumb question. WE ARE FOREVER CHASING CONSISTENCY. Not all Meplats are created equal. And considering the bullets come out of my 300 Win mag with a 10 twist barrel @ just over 2900 fps- they are doing in the neighborhood of 211,000 rpms if my math is correct. (No guarantees there!)
So if you go through your box of match bullets, you’ll quickly see many many bullets have OBVIOUSLY inconsistent meplats. Well we cannot have inconsistency & happy shooting on the same short bus. They just can’t be found in the same places. Enter the meplat trimmer.
A meplat trimmer is a simple tool that too can be had from Sinclair Int. and similar companies. It uses an endmill to trim back the meplat to the point that it’s cleaned up/consistent. And when we run all our bullets through the trimmer, their all have exactly the same meplat diameter and are square to the bullet.
True, a meplat trimmer blunts the bullet a teeny bit, and that does make it a bit dirtier. (“dirty” being a slang aeronautical term that means NOT aerodynamic) yes it reduces BC, but the BC were not consistent with all those gimped up bullet points anyway.. So take your pick. Have an inconsistent/untrue but published high BC , or have a bit lower BC that is dead on consistent bullet to bullet, shot to shot at range. For you anal types like me that have to have a number- I keep hearing a quote of 2%: that is trimming the meplat reduces BC by about 2%.
Here’s a picture of a gimped up point, and the same after being trimmed.
Here’s Sinclair’s link to their trimmer
NRA competitor Robert Whidden developed a die system that presses a keener point on a given hollow point match bullet. This increases BC which allows the bullet to retain velocity, energy and wind bucking ability better. Most of us long range shooters on this website are shooting 6.5mm and bigger bullets. My understanding is bullet “pointing” has great gains in .224” bullets as well as good gains in 6mm, but the larger diameter the bullet the more negligible the return. I’ll let you read about it here, whiddengunworks.net/pointingdie.html because man I am I tired of typing!
So this concludes how to sort and prep your bullets to be as consistent as possible in your long range endeavors. Feel free to contact me as I’m happy to help.
Coming soon is Chapter Three: Where’s My Riflings And Where Should I Put Them?
Tres MonCeret is a career machinist, gunsmith, competitive shooter, writer and instructor of many modern and primitive outdoor topics. He is currently looking for work in one of these venues in any geographical “cool place” to live. Resumes available.
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