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Reloading Techniques For Reloading


.270 vld ?

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Old 03-07-2011, 05:36 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 22
.270 vld ?

I am loading some Berger VLD's at the max coal of 3.340 as stated from the berger load data I got from Berger. When I chamber them they are jammed into the lands and come out with a coal of 3.330. Should I set the coal to 3.330 or less. I am stumped and have no intentions of firing any of these until I get this worked out. Any advice or thoughts would be great.
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:21 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Allen, TX
Posts: 2,608
Re: .270 vld ?

The actual COAL depends on your rifle. Chamber, headspace, throat, throat erosion, etc all come into play on every individual rifle.

If I understand you correctly, then you are jamming your bullets .010" into the lands which is acceptable for some applications. e.g. benchrest, target, single shot. But, you certainly want to work up your load carefully as it could cause a pressure spike as compared to the same load with say .010" jump to the lands.

Also, keep in mind that it's often considered risky to jam bullets into the lands with a hunting load and/or in a repeater as you may accidentally pull your bullet out of it's case inside the rifle if you open the bolt after chambering the round and end up with a magazine and chamber full of powder.

Hornady and Sinclair make COAL gauge tools for measuring and there are methods for measuring similar to what you've done in order to fix up a dummy round that can be retained as a reference.

One technique is to seat your bullet long in an uprimed case and use a sharpie to color the ogive. Then, try closing the bolt gently. If you feel resistance, seat it a little deeper and color it again. Repeat the procedure until you are just able to close the bolt with the slightest scratches on the ogive. That would be you COAL to the lands.

From there, you can start working up loads with that COAL as a reference point and try various seating depths with various amount of jump. Berger published a paper about seating depths but I can't gte to their website right now. It's been referenced in these forums a few times.

good luck
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:36 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: MD
Posts: 94
Re: .270 vld ?

above post sums it up pretty well. your COAL for that gun is the 3.330. 0.010 is a lot of jam in my opinion. I've never gone over 0.003 for a hunting rifle and always found good accuracy between 0.000 (the 3.330 in your situation) and 0.003 jam (3.333 for you) 4831sc gave me the best accuracy in my 270 with 140vld

good luck
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:12 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Allen, TX
Posts: 2,608
Re: .270 vld ?

See sticky here: Getting the Best Precision and Accuracy from Berger VLD bullets in Your Rifle
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:29 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: MS
Posts: 1,652
Re: .270 vld ?

Try them .010 is not a lot of jam and if your measurements are correct should not overcome normal neck tension.
I admit that I know just enough to be dangerous.....but dangerous at ever extending distances.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:38 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 98
Re: .270 vld ?

If you are pushing the bullet back into the case when you chamber it you can't simply assume that your last measurement is at a "0" setting. The bullet probably engraved the ogive at least .005. The correct way to establish seating depths is to use one of the specialized tools previously mentioned in this thread. I have shot many Berger VLDs in four different calibers. Depending upon the rifle some like the bullet to jump, some like to be at "0" and some like to be jammed.

As previously mentioned, to jam the bullets beyond .005 is not a good situation for a hunting rifle as you can stick the bullet into the rifling and then dump a full charge of powder into your trigger group if you attempt to eject a loaded round. In my experience, most VLDs will be seated somewhere between +10 and (-) 40. I read the sticky from Berger but have never found any accuracy jumping more than (-) 40. Remember if you seat into the lands reduce your initial load by 5% to start. I would test with (3) shot groups and load (3) @ (-)50, (3) @ (-) 40, (3) @ (-) 30, and so on up to + 5. One of your (3) shot groups will print better than the others and you can fine tune from there.

Finally, you want to make sure that your barrel rate of twist will stabilize the VLDs (see Berger's web site) and remember that VLD's are not fully stabilized at 100 yards. Don't be discouraged if your 100 yard groups are not in one hole. The accuracy with them really tend to shine at 200+ yards.

Good luck with your testing. Let us know when you find the sweet spot.
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