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VLDs and Full Length Magnum Cases

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Old 09-17-2011, 12:10 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
Posts: 538
VLDs and Full Length Magnum Cases


I'm not new to loading Berger VLDs and I have achieved great accuracy with the -06 case Based Wild cats that I have. I have learned just like Eric Stecker has said. That seating just off of the lands is the most accurate.

This being Said, I am starting to Load for the 7mm STW and the Issue I'm having is in order to seat to the lands the bullet is soooo long that In order to clear a loaded case from the action, I have to pull the Bolt... I can't be the only one with this problem....

What is your approach? Are you still able to get the accuracy if you seat just long enough to clear the action normally??? or do you just seat to the lands and Pull the Bolt????

I'm Loading the 180g Berger, It's one Long Bullet. I want it to work so bad, It's sickening.....I decided to seat so I could clear the action and so far accuracy is less than desired, about 1" at 100yds...I just wanted to see what you guys were doing. I'm probablly going to start over and load to the lands and go from there.


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Old 09-17-2011, 06:50 AM
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 5,852
Re: VLDs and Full Length Magnum Cases

I no longer try to seat ONLY right next to the lands after Eric wrote this article. I start there but usually end up as much as .160 off the lands before I stop searching for the perfect load and instead just go out and shoot stuff.

Optimizing Precision And Accuracy From VLD Bullets
By Eric Stecker

The following has been verified by numerous shooters in many rifles using bullets of different calibers and weights. It is consistent for all VLD bullets. What has been discovered is that VLD bullets shoot best when loaded to a COAL that puts the bullet in a “sweet spot”. This sweet spot is a band .030 to .040 wide and is located anywhere between jamming the bullets into the lands and .150 jump off the lands.

Note: When discussing jam and jump I am referring to the distance from the area of the bearing surface that engages the rifling and the rifling itself.

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Old 09-17-2011, 05:15 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
Posts: 538
Re: VLDs and Full Length Magnum Cases

Thanks for responding Len...

I guess it's a good thing that I have a whole box of them to experiment with. The diffrence between tne bullet seated Just off the lands and the one that clears the action is close to 0.25". I usually try seating just off of the lands. I don't believe in jamming into the lands as it would increase presures dramatically.

I have read the article that Eric Wrote and It totally makes sense to me. I will be doing as he suggested and try differing seating depths.

I won't worry near as much about the loaded Cartridge extraction. After all, the need to remove an loaded cartridge should be minimal.

When I first started shooting Bergers for hunting, I was sent a box by Berger to try. I was doubtful and I ended up calling and speaking to Eric and he assured me that they would perform. I was able to, without much effort get them to shoot extremely well out of my custom .30-06 Ackley Improved. the Buck in my Signature is the fruit of that first try with Bergers.

So I'll try it again and hopefully I'll get this 7STW shooting. I have to admit that those 180g VLD are very "sexy" if you will.... They gotta work.

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