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Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

 
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  #1  
Old 02-27-2013, 10:33 AM
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Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

I was sitting in the Dr. office yesterday and read an article in F&S about long range shooting. I don't recall the author the exact quote, but he said something to the affect of; with today's high quality bullets only the most dedicated reloader can make ammo better than factory loads. I find this very hard to believe and considered it kind of an insult to our craft. Thoughts on this???
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:53 AM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

My thought is this..I hav come to hate most hunting/gun magazines because all they do is try to promote something that they know isn't true. How do you think they get their money? They don't just get money from subscriptions. They also get money by advertising for large manufacturers of firearms and ammunition. You think they are going to say anything bad about the people and their products? If they did, you would see a lot less products being reviewed by that magazine and probably a lot less money going into the magazine company's pocket.

Take those articles with a grain of salt because all of it is just to get something for you to read and maybe believe. Just think of all the people that don't reload that would buy into that because they don't know any better.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:03 AM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

I read the article, and thought that in many ways the article was the best one I've seen in a general hunting magazine in a long time with regard to long range shooting and hunting. Many magazines lambaste anyone who shoots over 300 yards - and based on watching many hunters who show up at the local rifle range that may be a good idea.

I think his point was that ammo was a lot better than it used to be, and rifles are in general much more accurate. You might end up with a winning combination with regard to accuracy but many here - including myself - have found that our handloads will beat any factory ammunition tried in our rifles. Your odds, though, are much better than they used to be in getting rifle + ammo = accuracy when buying off the shelf.

PS. I didn't put that issue in the waiting room yet.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:12 AM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

I agree with what Vette said. Most of the people I see at my local ranges I wouldn't trust to shoot 100....Muchless 300+ yards.

I have had some very good quality factory ammo over the years and had very good luck with it in my rifles. However, the thing about reloading is not just to for accuracy. It's also to save money, and to find out what your gun might prefer over a factory load.

Personally I have found loads for my guns that they seem to REALLY like over factory loaded ammo, which was already accurate enough for most. I'm kind of a perfectionist, so I do get mad when I pull a shot that doesn't touch the other one. And to me, anything where all 3 (or 5) is not touching is not a good group. But that is also my OCD and perfectionist sidekicking in. LOL
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  #5  
Old 02-27-2013, 11:20 AM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

IMO, it all depends on what you purchase in what caliber. The cheap stuff is out there as always, Privi and Remmy come to mind right away along with Wolf, but, there is some really good ammunition out there but you'll pay for it.

Lapua factory loads and HSM are excellent choices. Not cheap and not always available (especially now).

I look at factory ammunition as a source of brass as erll as the range box at the club.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:34 AM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

Lapua, Nosler Custom, Federal Premium, Weatherby brand (Norma), and even Hornady are all excellent choices for factory ammo.

The Hornady TAP LE (red box) .308 168gr HPBT ammo has been very accurate out of my .308's. Apparantly it is handloaded and is true match-grade ammo, which I can tell from the accuracy is produces. Of course, I guess it has to be if that's what agency snipers use, and trust their lives to.

Federal Premium has always been my go-to ammo for hunting. I still have tons of it stock-piled for my STW and 7mm RemMag. Same goes for the Weatherby brand ammo, which is manufactured by Norma. I have tons of it stocked up for my .257 Wby Mag.

And I shot Hornady ammo before all of those, and never had 1 single issue out of it. I just preferred the Accubonds to the SST, so I swapped over to Federal Premium.

But all of these have been excellent from my experiences with them. I have never had any negative experience with any brand of ammo, EXCEPT 2.....Remington & Winchester factory ammo. I had 3 Remingon .22LR bullets get stuck in the barrel of one of our .22 pistols and had to get a gunsmith friend to drill and tap them out. Also, I've never had good luck with Winchester factory ammo grouping very well...

I do love Winchester nickle-plated rifle brass. That is some good stuff to use for reloading.
__________________
"I'm just a peckerwood who lives in the hills with too many guns..." - Bob Lee Swagger

"Give me a minute...I'm good. Give me an hour...I'm great. Give me 6 months...And I'm unbeatable." - Col. Hannibal Smith

Ignore everything I say, because I have a reading comprehension and memory problem...

Quote:
Originally Posted by WildRose View Post
The 284 is to the STW what a tricycle is to a Ninja.
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  #7  
Old 02-27-2013, 01:00 PM
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Re: Factory ammo as good as hand loads?

Seems like the writer was lumping all reloading together, which is (to me) like lumping ALL 4wd trucks together and hitting a mud pit and calling them equal when one factory truck makes it and 1 custom built doesn't. I know guys that reload informally just to save a few bucks or have a little more blammo for the same price.

Then there's guys like us that specifically load ammo to perform at it's top level in 1 individual rifle. In which case saying that factory (even HSM) ammo is equal to hands loads is like saying a Camaro LZ1 is equal to Danica Patric's car she ran in Daytona. While that Camaro is a helluva car and advertised as race ready it is not equal to a top level sprint cup car.

So the tradition advantages of handloading are still there, be it cost or custom loads, or both.
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Keep in mind the animals we shoot for food and display are not bullet proof. Contrary to popular belief, they bleed and die just like they did a hundred years ago. Being competent with a given rifle is far more important than impressive ballistics and poor shootability. High velocity misses never put a steak in the freezer.

Joe
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