I am a newbie at handloading and I need some experienced opinions on how to interpret a COL test. I just started handloading at the beginning of this year so I have A LOT to learn! As a bunus I just started shooting a rifle in November last year so I have a lot to learn there as well.
I attempted to perform a COL test for Berger VLD 140s this morning with my Savage Long Range Precision 260. I had previously determined that for my rifle a Berger VLD 140 'in the lands' seemed to be COL 2.930" so using the method prescribed by Berger I made four sets of rounds (5 rounds per set) at COL 2.930", 2.890", 2.850", and 2.810".
I had a failure to chamber (my first!) on one of the 2.850" rounds. Chalk that one up as a lesson learned.
I shot these groups at 200m using a bipod and rear bag.
The group sizes were:
2.810" = 0.733"
2.850" = 0.423" (only 4 rounds)
2.890" = 1.248"
2.930" = 0.874"
My (ignorant) analysis of this target is that the rifle does not like 2.890", it _might_ really like 2.850", and it doesn't seem to mind 2.810" or 2.930".
Do you draw any conclusions from this target?
Should I repeat the same test?
Or should I try a test with rounds with COL 2.830", 2.840", 2.850", 2.860" to see if the 2.850" is an anomaly or not?
Any advice is much appreciated.