I need some help....with a lot of stuff....
I'm trying to become a decent shot. I've got what I think is a good rifle. 7WSM, Rem 700 (short action which limits max seating depth to magazine length), Lilja barrel, HS bottom metal, NF 5-22x50 scope & Manners GAT stock. Stock tigger set at 3.5 lbs and Leupold dual dove-tail scope mounts (both of which may need an upgrade, I don't know).
I've been trying to develop a good load. My best so far seems to be SGK 160gr, Win Mag primers, 64.5gr of 4381sc. I can usually get an MOA group, sometimes better. If memory servers, I'm getting around 2950 fps (don't that info here).
I've been shooting from a bench & prone with a Harris bipod and rear bag. My problem has been consistency. I think I may have discovered one error I have been making last night. I was shooting at 200yds and my group was a 4-5 inch horizontal line. I'm not a great shot, but I know I'm not that bad. I had read something about "Bipod Hop" when shooting off hard surfaces, so I placed a Past Recoil pad that was in my bag under the bipod and shot again. I got about a 2" group just by putting a pad under the bipod.
Do most of you shoot with a pad under your bipod when shooting off a bench or is this a mental problem I have?
I ordered and watched Shawn's DVD and thought it was great, but I feel like I'm not shooting well enough to move on to that level. I know you can't judge my technique, but with the info I've provided, can you see any obvious problems?
I'm going to go shoot in an hour, and I'll try and post some photos, but if anyone has any obvious suggestions, I'm all ears. Thanks for your help.