I'm jumping them pretty far. My c.o.a.l. is 3.950" and my lands are at 3.4250" with this bullet. With 300 gr. Lapua c.o.a.l. touching lands is 3.80".
But I did'nt have trouble with seating depth working up a load for the Berger.
What I had trouble with was the sensativity to powder charge and primer.
Usually I can get a bullet to shoot with the first or second combo I throw at it.
I like to stay with an even number for simplicity, like 88 or 90 gr's. then a 215 to light it. Then I'll mess with seating depth to lower e.s...
With the berger I tried all the usual methods and I would always get a flier or 2 with every combo.
Until I went 1/2 gr's. I ended up @ 89.5 gr. Retumbo. E.S. of 4 fps. and shot .447" @ 100 @ 2,750 fps. Also using a Winchester Mag primer. 215 opens the group to 1". Weird huh?
As far as wearing out a barrel, I have gotten over 3,500 rounds accurately (under 1") before I set it back. I'll chop off 1" from both ends, recrown and rechamber, and get around 2,000 more before I can it.
Darrel Holland saw a .340 Weatherby barrel 15 years ago I had over 5,000+ rounds through and he could'nt believe it would still shoot. The fire cracking looked like snake skin. It would still cut 3/4" @ 100 when I sold it.
One 338 Win. mag. barrel I have, I put 5,283 rounds down it in 1 year. March 16th -08 to march 16th-09. Shot 225gr. Sierra FB, and 300 gr. MK out to 1,500 yds... Still shot 5/8" when I took it off. Kept it for conversation peice.
Shocking thing is, it's a factory stainless Ruger barrel. When new, the 225 gr Sierra shot 3 shots @ .096" at 100 yds. Second best 100 yd. group I've ever shot.
Why? Because I shoot alot. And 99% of all my shooting is 1,000 Yds.+.
I also Document every shot on every barrel. Weather, date, time, everything.
If something with the rifle or load changes I want to know why and how.
If I miss more or less or get smoked by the wind, I'll know what to look for in the future, so I can avoid or overcome and conquer.
To me, missing takes the fun out of shooting.
My Granpa, who was a Sniper in WW2, taught me at a young age to accept recoil, not be afraid of it and if you are going to pull the trigger you should hit what you shoot at...
Documenting everything and studying it from time to time, I learn what weather patterns will do to the wind at a certain time of year in a specific canyon. And I shoot in different canyons all year long. Never letting myself get static.
When you learn the wind, your shooting goes to another level, way beyond what you thought was possible.