I just finished up a rifle for Joecool here on LRH. Here is a list of componants:
-338 Allen Mag chambered
-BAT 8.5" M receiver, left hand
-BAT 40 MOA rail base
-Rifles Basix 8 to 20 oz trigger currently set at 1 lb
-Lilja 1.450" straight cylinder 1-10 twist 338 barrel with very large 7/16" flutes
-APS compact 4 port muzzle brake
-McMillan MBR Tooley stock
-Hybrid ABS Barrel bedding V-Block bedding system
-Nightforce 8-32x 56mm NP-R1 reticle
Total package weighs in at around 30-31 lbs ready to shoot. I must admit that for a long range rifle, I am a real sucker for the Tooley stock but I am a vertical grip design nut. THis rifle REALLY feels good to shoot.
Back to the range test. I loaded up some loads, same I was using in old Black Sunshine. THis load is pretty darn mild in that rifle but in the 40" pipe still clips along right at around 3400 fps with the 300 gr pills.
I instantly found out that in warm summer temps this load works well, in the cooler winter temps, it is to low in pressure and I was getting severe hang fired, some long enough I would start wondering if they were going to actually go bang!!!
Our weather has been the pits for long range rifle testing and with the addition of our new little girl time has been a bit used up the last week or so so I must give Larry a huge thank you for his patients through this time. I have taken longer then I told him I would and apologize for that.
Yesterday morning I woke up to quite a bit of snow falling so I headed over to the shop to get some work done. Around 3:30 in the afternoon the clouds lifted and it stopped snowing. The winds were calm so I decided to try to get up and test the rifle. Packed everything up and headed out.
By the time I got things set up, gong and rifle, I had about 30 minutes of shooting time left, at the most. I took some pictures with what light I did have and then bore sighted the rifle. I had placed the gong at 1000 yards and also set up a smaller sighter rock 10 yards to the right of the gong to zero in on before moving to the steel.
It only took three shots to break the rock but it was not easy with the severe hang fires with this load. I could not chrono because of the light conditions but form earlier testing, I would estimate this load was in the low 3200 fps range.
I shot a few more times to confirm the scope adjustment and then turned the last three toward the gong. I did not have it suspended, just propped up against a rock outcropping.
Lined up on it and tripped the trigger on the first shot,
"Click......................Bang!!" and around a second later dust lifted all around the gong and the very loud metalic impact noise drifted back to my shooting position. Must have been a pretty close to center hit as the gong never even twitched from what I could see.
Shot two started away with another "Click....................Bang!" and again the bullet rung the steel.
Shot three repeated the first two but this shot flipped the steel plate down the hill, must have been on the fringes somewhere I figured.
I packed everything up and headed over to the gong, not sure what to expect from shooting this rifle with these severe hang fires. I feel I am a decent shot but the "Click...........Bang!" thing is very hard to shoot though accuracy wise. Also they generally are not the most consistant loads velocity wise either!!! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]
Got up to the gong as was pleasantly suprised by the results on the steel.
The three shots made a nearly perfect triangle on the lower left quarter of the plate. They measured just a hair short of 6" ctc for the three shot group. With the light conditions and the hangfires I was very happy
I want to get the load worked up to eliminate the hang fires and get the rifle up into the 3400 fps velocity range where it will easily reach and do one more test at long range and then get her packed up and headed to her new home.
All in all I am very happy with the results and I am pretty sure there will be no problems at all hammering an elk at 1500 yards through the vitals with this rifle.
With a good working pressure load I would be amazed if this rifle will not play with the 1/3 moa level at this range and easily consistantly under 1/2 moa in good shooting conditions.