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Reloading Berger Bullets


Need some advice

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Unread 02-09-2009, 08:09 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: MN
Posts: 1,219
Re: Need some advice

I made one, but it still cost me 35 bucks so here is one on midway from RCBS:
Netscape Search

The link will just go to midwayusa.com so it is called RCBS Case Master Concentricity Gaging Tool
Product #: 310955 | Manufacturer #: 87310


I have never used it, but it looks to me like it should work just fine. You may want to ask someone who has used one to make sure that it works well.
I used to re-load but now I "hand-load".
-- Well, at least I try --

Last edited by britz; 02-09-2009 at 08:13 AM.
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Unread 02-09-2009, 05:56 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 430
Re: Need some advice

The Sinclair run-out gauge is the most popular and easiest to use. In conjunction with a ball mic, you can assess your brass's quality and the suitability of your sizing and seating process.
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Unread 02-09-2009, 08:55 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Bryan, Tx
Posts: 284
Re: Need some advice

Neck turning gives uniform neck tension so that the bullet leaves the cartridge evenly. Call me crazy, but I also use neck turning to index my cases. I take a thousandths off the necks with a Forster neck turner, which doesn't quite take material off all the way around the neck. Wherever there is untouched brass (usually one easy to see side) is the thin side. I then put the thin side at 12:00 squarely behind my lug. Saves measuring neck thickness on every case!!! Even if you're shooting factory barrels (as I do), you should neck turn. Forster neck turner is 60$, mandrel 12$. Spring for a power driver at sinclair that works with lee shell holders. Neck turning by hand just plain sucks! For less than 100$ you can have this process up and running AND all your cases indexed.

See other posts on bullet/case runout. Results vary sorting with this technique, but are generally favorable if you put in the time IMHO. Seating your bullets into the lands will reduce effects of runout, but is not practical for a hunting rifle. I just returned my RCBS casemaster for a Sinclair gauge.

Sinclair = Cadillac!
RCBS = Kia! (love that Chargemaster 1500 combo though)
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Unread 02-10-2009, 03:25 PM
Gold Member
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Republic of NJ
Posts: 978
Re: Need some advice

Definitely buy yourself either a Hornady or Sinclair bullet comparator, this will allow you to sort bullets by bearing surface etc. Set your dies so that you only bump the shoulder back about 0.0005 - 0.001", this can be accomplished by purchasing the Hornady headspace gauge. Also purchase a Hornady or Sinclair OAL gauge, as this will allow you to precisely measure your bullet jump to the lands, especially when used with a bullet comparator (most bullets can differ in length up to 0.020", so reading off of the bearing surface eliminates that). Also, the runout gauge, Hornady just came out with one, and it also allows you to correct runout caused by the bullet not being seated straight etc.

Good luck.
Red mist. It's an addiction!
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Unread 02-12-2009, 12:24 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 181
Re: Need some advice

i have read a few poeples posts/replies that say to only turn necks if you have a tight neck chamber...is this true? i thought the reason for neck turining was to uniform the brass???
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Unread 02-12-2009, 01:00 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Bryan, Tx
Posts: 284
Re: Need some advice

Neck turn for uniform neck tension and even bullet release. Even factory rifle chambers benefit from turning the cartridge neck. Plus it lets you know where the thick and thin sides are so they can be "indexed" (placed in the gun behind the lug the same way every time). If the thin side is behind your recoil lug, it is less likely to stretch Stretching would theoretically creating a banana cartridge shape over time. I have never had an issue with this, but I neck turn/index to be consistent even with my factory rifle.
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Unread 02-12-2009, 01:17 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 26
Re: Need some advice

I find it kind funny, and sad at the same time, that THE formula to accuracy is not being advocated.

The Three B’s.

1. Barrels
2. Bullets
3. Brass

In the above order!

I’ve thought today a little bit about why this is. Everybody knows the 3B’s, it’s in every reloading manual and on every accuracy forum. So why are people so quick to suggest not using this particular die, or using golf tee’s and water to find internal volume, or weigh brass and organize into little segregated piles, and suggesting the purchase of inexpensive measuring tools.
The answer lies in not wanting to hear the truth; the truth being the three B’s. When some asks: “What can I do to not group two feet at a gazillion yards?” The answer: “Buy a better barrel” is not what one wants to hear. The question: “what can I do to my load (read bullet here) to shoot under an inch?” does not want the answer “go buy five different powders and five different bullets and experiment”. However, this is the truth of the matter.
Imagine for a second perfect brass, and I mean perfect. Then Imagine the perfect load assembled with all the perfect tools and gadgets, one’s that “flatline” on concentricity gages and weigh exactly the same weight. Now shoot them down a factory barrel, you choose which one, I’m not here to be bashing. Your results will be mediocre.
So, start with your barrel. Instead of buying this fancy tool, and that accuracy gage, and those premium brass, invest your money in a top of the line barrel and you will be amazed. They just shoot, even with poor loads.
Secondly, experiment with many load combinations. Not just one bullet and a couple of powders, I mean really play until you find a combination that is suited to your barrel. While reloading, don’t convince yourself that it’s not shooting because of your brass prep or reloading procedure. It’s simply that you haven’t found the right bullet and powder combination.
Finally, once you’re shooting .2’s and .3’s at 100, and have no vertical at 300 yards, then start fiddling with the little stuff. You may or may not notice a difference depending on the quality of brass you started with. The brass component of the three B’s is more a matter of maintenance, keeping them clean, to length, and annealed.

Be happy and satisfied with how your rifle is shooting. Have fun, shoot, reload, enjoy yourself, and take a youngster along with you. Don’t expect miracles from factory fodder, be content. The money you spend on all the gadgets is wasteful (trust me I have them all). If you’re truly, and I mean truly unsatisfied with your results, then go out and buy a top of the line barrel.

Last edited by heikki02003; 02-12-2009 at 04:22 PM.
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