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Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

 
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  #8  
Old 09-13-2009, 07:50 AM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

I would use this depth because of the depths you tested it is clearly producing the most consistent results.
Depth 0.050"
Group1 = 0.98"
Group2 = 0.99"
Ave = 0.99"

Like .280 fan said I would now work on your powder charge. If the intention is long range I wouldn't fret too much about 100 yard groups. Get a powder charge that yields a consistent (low) ES/SD and send them down range further to see what you get. Your powder charge stands to make the most change in your results.
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  #9  
Old 09-13-2009, 09:22 AM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by bookworm View Post
I'm wondering if I should fire a few more with the Bergers touching the lands? I have heard that they like to be touching or in the lands, but I followed the process outlined by the fella that posted an article that works for Berger.
Yup, I think you should try some to the lands at some point. with all due respect to some of the other guys, i dont think your groups clearly show anything other than so far you have a mediocre accuracy with your current bullet/powder/rifle combination. The reason I say that is, there is very little consistancy with your groups. The two groups that produced a sub MOA group and then a larger group are inconssitant. What were those larger groups like? Were ther two shots close together and a flier???

Quote:
Or, would you go ahead and work on the powder load with one of these seating depths and then tweak seating depth once I find powder charge.
This is exactley what I would do. Find your powder charge sweet spot using one seatting depth. I would recommend either .010 off the lands or touching the lands. It seems to me most guys are shooting their Bergers touching the lands, but maybe I'm wrong. I think I do remember one of the Berger guys recommend starting .010 off the lands, so you might start there. Once you find the best charge, then adjust your seating depth to fine tune it. You should also try some different powders. Yeah, that gets spendy and time consumming, but if you want .5 MOA, that's what it might take. I'll be trying 3 bullets and two powders just for starters in im 300 RUM.

Three shot groups can be tough to get conclusive results from from an inconsistant shooting rifle/bullet/powder. Maybe you're getting barel stress issues? Maybe you're pulling a shot now and then. Maybe you have a bedding issue? Maybe there is some inconsistancy with your loading techniques? How often are you cleaning? Do you shoot any fouling shots? IMHO, I just dont think there is enough info here to make any conclusions at all.

Quote:
I'd like to keep shooting until I find something that gets me to 0.5moa, but I don't think I have the time and frankly I'm not sure this particular rifle is capable. And while I don't want to think this...perhaps it is me that is not capable of shooting .5 moa consistently.
Have you shot .5 MOA befroe? Maybe it is you or your rifle? You should have a fairly good idea whether or not you're holding steady and getting a clean break. What rifle do you have?

Hope you get it figured out,

-MR
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  #10  
Old 09-13-2009, 10:14 AM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

For a hunting rifle you really don't want a load where the bullets are into the rifling if an acceptable load can be developed with the bullet off the rifling or even at magazine length.

In my 300RUM, the 210VLD shoots better @ .020" off the rifling than it does loaded into the rifling. Loading at magazine length didn't work in this rifle so I will be using the .020" off length.

In a custom .308 I tried loading an Accubond to the magazine length just to see how it would shoot. At magazine length, the bullet ogive is .122" off the rifling. Believe it or not, this proved to be a more accurate oal than any other that I tried and regularely shoots under .5".

I agree with the author, Berger VLD's will often shoot quite well with a jump to the rifling. You just have to find the correct amount of jump for your rifle/load combination. There is often more than one "sweet spot" so a little experimentation is always a good idea. Contrary to what is often posted on the web, bullets don't always shoot best when close to (or into) the rifling.
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Old 09-13-2009, 01:44 PM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

Varmit Hunter,

In case there might be a misunderstanding, I am in no way implying that bullets *always* shoot better when seated to or just off the lands. I am implying that from what I have read in these forums and others, I am under the impression that *most* (not all) of the reports I read say the Bergers shoot best when seated to the lands. My impression made be wrong and I didn't see anyone mentioning that to the OP so I just though I would offer it. The best results I've seen from any bullets fired from MY 300 WSM are the Bergers seated to the lands.

I think we all agree that different rilfes and different powders and bullets produce different results. Some might like the Bergers or what ever bullet seated .100 off and some might like them in the lands, but I think that in most cases, Bergers like very little jump, if any jump at all, and this is why I sugested to the OP to find the sweet powder charge and then fien tune the seating. He may be using a charge that his rifle just doesn't like and in my past experiences, the powder charge seems to affect accuracy more than seating depth... just my experience.

Last edited by MontanaRifleman; 09-13-2009 at 04:35 PM.
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  #12  
Old 09-13-2009, 03:52 PM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

Thanks for everyone's input and help. Here are answers to a few questions by MontanaRifleman:

Quote:
What were those larger groups like? Were ther two shots close together and a flier???
Yes, very often there are two of the three shots very close (often 1/2" range) with one that flies out by an inch or more. In fact, as I sit and look at my targets right now, I see that of the 6 groups that were similar (1 - 1.5 moa), every one of them followed that pattern. Two shots will be 0.25" to 0.5" and then the 3rd is out by an inch or so.

Quote:
Maybe you're getting barel stress issues? Maybe you're pulling a shot now and then. Maybe you have a bedding issue? Maybe there is some inconsistancy with your loading techniques?
My rifle is a standard Remington 700 SPS dropped in an HS Precision stock and trigger adjusted down to 3#. I saw no improvement in accuracy with the HS stock, so I just returned it. I'm going to go with a laminate stock and will pillar and glass bed...which is next weekend's project.

Quote:
How often are you cleaning? Do you shoot any fouling shots?
I clean after every trip to the range, which is 20 to 40 shots. I usually shoot 3 fouling shots.

Quote:
Have you shot .5 MOA befroe? Maybe it is you or your rifle? You should have a fairly good idea whether or not you're holding steady and getting a clean break.
No, I have not shot MOA consistently before. I've been shooting casually for a lot of years but am a newbie to the higher accuracy and long range stuff. I'd like to get my hands on a proven rifle and see if part of the problem is me. I'm shooting off of a solid concrete table with a stable rest on the front and a nice leather rabbit ear bag in the rear. My shots are breaking clean and everything seems to be very steady.

Also, I've tried a couple different scopes to rule out a bad scope as a contributing factor.

Keep the suggestions coming - I appreciate the input.
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  #13  
Old 09-13-2009, 05:08 PM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

MontanaRifleman,

My comment was not in reference to anything that you or any other individual has posted. After reading thousands of posts, over several years, one could interpret that most bullets shoot best at, or into, the lands. I'm not sure if that is true or not but there are certainly many fine shooting rifles that use ammo loaded with bullets that are well away from the rifling. I doubt that any factory match ammo has bullets that will be close to the rifling but it still shoots competitively in many different firearms. Some of my A-Max loads shoot very tight groups when seated deeply in the cases. I'm not convinced that "close" is inherently more accurate.

My point was simply that for hunting purposes, I'd rather look for an accurate load with bullets loaded well off the rifling than to get hung up looking for a load that should be accurate because the bullets are close to, or into, the rifling.

I also think that it would be beneficial to work up his powder charge until he is in the range of where his final load will be, then try tuning for oal. As pressure changes so do other related factors such as the best seating depth. At least that has been my observation.

Charlie

Quote:
Originally Posted by MontanaRifleman View Post
Varmit Hunter,

In case there might be a misunderstanding, I am in no way implying that bullets *always* shoot better when seated to or just off the lands. I am implying that from what I have read in these forums and others, I am under the impression that *most* (not all) of the reports I read say the Bergers shoot best when seated to the lands. My impression made be wrong and I didn't see anyone mentioning that to the OP so I just though I would offer it. The best results I've seen from any bullets fired from MY 300 WSM are the Bergers seated to the lands.

I think we all agree that different rilfes and different powders and bullets produce different results. Some might like the Bergers or what ever bullet seated .100 off and some might like them in the lands, but I think that in most cases, Bergers like very little jump, if any jump at all, and this is why I sugested to the OP to find the sweet powder charge and then fien tune the seating. He may be using a charge that his rifle just doesn't like and in my past experiences, the powder charge seems to affect accuracy more than seating depth... just my experience.

Last edited by Varmint Hunter; 09-13-2009 at 05:17 PM.
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  #14  
Old 09-13-2009, 09:30 PM
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Re: Berger seating depth test results - what do you think?

[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by bookworm View Post
Yes, very often there are two of the three shots very close (often 1/2" range) with one that flies out by an inch or more. In fact, as I sit and look at my targets right now, I see that of the 6 groups that were similar (1 - 1.5 moa), every one of them followed that pattern. Two shots will be 0.25" to 0.5" and then the 3rd is out by an inch or so.
Sounds to me that out of the 12 shots from those two sets of groups you have two fliers. You may possibly have a .5-.75 MOA rifle? The question is what caused those fliers? Was it the rifle, or inconsistancies in the loads? In any case you still want to tighten up those groups a little. I would think with some load work, good reloading techniques and good shooting techniques you probably can.

The HS should have been a good platform provided the action screws were torqued down appropriately. Your SPS may only shoot .75 MOA or you might get a little better with some work. With a factory rifle and barrel, sometimes you get a good shooter and sometimes a mediocre one.

Sounds like you're fairly confident about your shooting. If you have any friends you know are good shots or know anyone at your range, you might ask them to shoot your rifle or like you said, shoot someone elses.

When you clean, are you sure you're getting all the copper out? You might get it bore scoped once after you''ve cleaned it to see.


Hope you get it worked out

-MR
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