Originally Posted by Kennibear
Does it improve the bullet by making it longer or at least with a long bearing surface relative to weight to minimize this effect? That is, do long bodied bullets with long contact surfaces pitch and yaw less? Have you found a correlation between length of bearing surface as a function of sectional density that improves or reduces this effect?
Very informative article, written for laymen to understand. That alone is an accomplishment.
I don't know. High speed video is the best way to quantify the maximum pitch and yaw angles of bullets in flight. We've produced and reviewed high speed videos to quantify pitch and yaw on a number of bullets, but we haven't noticed any length related trends, but we haven't carefully designed an experiment with bearing surface length as the only variable either.
I tend to think that controlling other factors is likely more important. You want a good concentric load with minimal opportunity for the bullet to get misaligned in the bore as it transitions from the case to the rifling, and you want a good crown and a clean release as it leaves the muzzle. As Mike said, you also want to keep the muzzle pressures down either with an appropriate barrel length or a good powder choice.
With a given level of maximum pitch and yaw (say 5 degrees), longer bullets will have a greater increase in drag than shorter bullets, because at a given angle, longer bullets have a greater increase in cross sectional surface area than shorter bullets.