Re: New long range rifle completed
The coues hunt is over for us. We had a great time. The big bucks eluded us this year but it was still great to camp and get away from our usual routines. We glassed up 20 bucks and about the same number of does. All bucks were spikes and forkhorns except one small 3 pointer.
Don used my rifle and got a spike opening day. Shot was 480 yds, the 180 VLD hit exactly where aimed. Entered behind the shoulder breaking a rib going in and out. Exit was approx 1 1/2". Deer folded in seconds.
Four days later just before a weather change my remaining friend shot another spike. He used a 257 weatherby, shooting the 115 VLD, I built a few years back. Up to this point he had never used turrets. The buck was right at 400 yds, yea I know, who would believe it but it really was exactly 400 yds. He twisted up the M1 turret on the 4.5-14 scope and hit that buck behind the shoulder and it dropped dead with no movement what so ever.
There was another spike with that deer so I said what the heck and shot at it. That is when things went wrong. The first shot was low and barely clipped the abdomen! It spilled his insides and he stood in shock. I asked my spotter what happened as I acquired the buck again. He said hte shot was low. I shot again with same turret setting and it was way over his back. HUH? I shot again and it was TEN FEET to the right. I then grabbed the 257 and finished the deer.
After some thought I realized the thin jacketed hunting VLD decided that THIS was the time to be torn up by the 1 in 7 twist 3 groove barrel. The shot count in the barrel is around 230 rounds. I haven't gone to the range to verify but I am certain that is what happened. The rifle was carried with care and never even bumped. If it was bumped it would have shot a few shots near each other.
SO..... those of you that warned me about that combination of a 1 in 7 AND a 3 groove were right.
I do have a load with the heavy 180 target VLDs and will shoot them against the hunting bullets tomorrow and will know very quickly the cause of those misses.