rifle, ammo or both

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by lonestar shooter, Feb 18, 2009.

  1. lonestar shooter

    lonestar shooter Member

    Jan 25, 2009
    I shoot a model 700 adl in a 7mm rem mag. The rifle is stock except for a timmney trigger and a homemade bedding and free float job. The rifle will shoot a hornady factory 154 gr sst load at 1/2 moa at 100 yds almost without fail, and I can occasionally shoot 6 in. groups at 600 yds.(if the conditions permit) the gun has 2 kills at over 600 yds. It'll shoot. My question is: Will a custom rifle, built for accuracy from the ground up, shoot this load better than my rifle does now? Question 2: Will my rifle shoot percision loaded handloads better than it shoots this factory load? Question 3: If my rifle can shoot 1 moa at 600 yds with this factory ammo, can I assume that it can hold 1 moa at 1000 yds with the same ammo? (I'm pretty sure the shooter cannot:D) So, do I need to lean towards a custom built rifle, custom ammo, or both?

    Any advise would be welcomed. I'll be working out of town for a while. I'll check back when I return. Cheers and thanks.
  2. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

    Dec 24, 2001
    lonestar shooter,
    Q1: There is no guarantee what a custom rifle will shoot the best. A lot of the accuracy detracting factors are taken out (actually never added to) of a custom rifle built by a accuracy minded and competent riflesmith. It may shoot that same factory load to 1/4" but then again it may go 1". A custom riflemaker may guarantee his rifle with a certain factory ammo, but you can be sure it's ammo that he's already shot through the rifle and knows what it's doing. Q2: I would say it's a pretty good bet that it will shoot custom handloads better than it will factory fodder. This is under the pretense that the experienced handloader tries as many different bullets, powders and primers, along with good brass as necessary to find that "magical" load. Other factors need to be taken into consideration also, such as knowing how often the barrel "needs" to be cleaned in order to keep accuracy at a level for effective handloading. Q3: "Assume makes an a$$ outta' u & me"....but that is the theory behind the 1MOA from 100yds to extended ranges.
    If you can afford both custom rifle and ammo, go for it. If you're on a budget, go for the custom reloaded ammo and see if you can improve your rifle's accuracy. Later on you can either add accuracy enhancing things to your rifle, like better stock and glass or go the custom rifle route. Like my Daddy used to say, "The choice is your's, make it light on yourself"...JohnnyK.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009

  3. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Jan 16, 2008
    Q1: A custom rifle probably would shoot more accruately than your current rifle, but do you want to lay out that kind of money to find out? Unless you've got deep pockets, I would work with the rifle you currently have.

    Q2: Your rifle will probably shoot better with handloaded ammo. This is an investment worth making even if you're only able to duplicate the accuracy results you're currently getting. Just looking at the variety of bullets available you would be able to put together a custom load for whatever situation you might encounter.

    Q3: Tough to say whether your ammo will hold 1moa accuracy out to 1k. For example, recently I was out shooting my .308 at 800 yards and my rifle shot just fine with factory ammo. At 900 yards it keyholed every shot (the bullet started to tumble in the air). The only way you will find out the accuracy potential of your ammo at 1k is to go out and shoot 1k.
  4. RugerM77.270

    RugerM77.270 Well-Known Member

    Sep 25, 2008
    1/2'' is good and will probably improve with handloading. Manytimes factory will vary from lot to lot so the next box of factory may not shoot the same. You can eliminate many inconsistancies with handloading. Plus its so much fun and the possibilities and combinations are endless.

    IF you are shooting 1/2'' at 100 and 6'' at 600 yard there is an ''arc'' to you bullet. For your gun to shoot ''straight'' it should be shooting 1/2'' at 100 and 3'' at 600. You will probably be looking at 12'' at 1000 which ain't bad but you will never know for sure until you try.