Originally Posted by Derek M.
This idea is cogent. We should do what works. For me, if I begin with the bullet seated at the lands, my pressures are usually at their highest, as they should be. This leaves me with one direction to tune, and that is to seat deeper, where consequently, the pressures tend to drop. If in fact I can get a better load with a bullet seated deeper and pressure drops, I can always add more powder to see if the load can be tuned even more.
My problem is I tend to get lazy once my loads are in the .4 range and under at 100 yards.
You are spot-on. It is MUCH easier to eliminate variables when you have to only work in one direction. Our method is very similar to yours except that we start with the bullet at .030" off the lands. We have NEVER failed to find a load that would tune to allow the shooter (in good conditions with a good trigger, scope and bech equipment) to shoot in the zeros and have minimal spread on velocity.
We actually thought that we were going to have to eat some crow with our procedure a few weeks back as one of the guns would not break the .5 MOA barrier consistently and we had stated on numerous occassions that they all will shoot in the zeros and boy were we worried...... However, we maintained our standards of (less than .1 MOA at 100 yards) and slowly eliminated the variables and ultimately found a faulty Jewell trigger and a faulty Nightforce scope. With those two variables eliminated (scope replaced and trigger swapped out (note to Kirby: we just pulled out the trigger hanger vice taking the gun out of the stock), the gun started "showing out" as it was designed to do.
Keep up the good work and don't sacrifice high standards when it gets difficult..... The other thing is that when the groups are big, the bullets may not be "asleep" yet. :o