THA thing you did to your ammo to help your precision is ?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by herbeapuce, Feb 26, 2013.

  1. herbeapuce

    herbeapuce Member

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    Hi.
    I'm not doing to good with my reloads... I am also fairly new to this addiction ;-)

    maybe some of you more experimented reloaders here could share with me and others what really made the big difference in their ammo ....

    what would you say was the most important thing you did to your reloads (not to your rifle plz) to help your grouping

    things that come in mind:

    getting better cases
    weighting the case
    neck turning the case
    neck sizing only ( obviously)
    interior neck reaming
    neck tension
    primer choice
    more accurate scale
    better dies
    better seating die
    playing with OAL
    crimping
    polishing the chamfer
    deburing primer hole

    etc etc etc


    what single action did you do to your ammo that evening to get that big smile on your face at the range that day , when you finally realized what was it you were doing wrong or omitting ?

    I am not looking for being a F class champion, I just want to feel good about my reloads and have a close to .5 inch group with my tikka t3 varmint in 25-06. At this time I have only reloaded about 200 shells in various powders , OAL, primers, bullets; and I get a lot of flyers... on a group of 5 , I often get 1 or 2 holes touching, but then the flyers... I end up at 1" to 2"....

    thanks for your time and knowledge.

    stef
     
  2. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Well-Known Member

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    Hate to tell you this but.. it's not one thing. It's when you get it all right that it works. Oh , no crimping !
     

  3. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Well-Known Member

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    You might try posting a detailed description of how you are loading and with what tools in what caliber ect and see if some members can point out a few errors or ways to improve. There are lots of variables and there is no silver bullet.
     
  4. farout

    farout Well-Known Member

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    When I was trying to find that magic .5 MOA or better with my 25-06. I found a few things that helped that I don't believe were on the list.

    ..Don't mix different case brands when reloading (Don't shoot two Winchesters and then one Remington and expect to get a good group.)
    ... Neck tension does matter. cases should be annealed after about 4 firings. Do not shoot groups with cases that have different round counts on them (Don't shoot two 3 times fired cases with a never fired case and expect to get a good group.)
    ... Bullet choice. ( If you are starting out with something like a Berger VLD and getting flyers, get a bullet that is easier to tune. Like a Sierra GameKing or a Nosler Ballistic Tip.)

    BUT as the above folks said. YOUR issue could be anything. A detailed description of how you are reloading and what tools your using would go a long ways to helping you find a solution from the board here.
     
  5. dakota1tn

    dakota1tn Active Member

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    I like nosler brass. Expensive but worth it. The thing that made the most difference in my loading was when I started measuring for the ogive of the bullet instead of form the tip. Every gun will vary but most will have a sweet spot anywhere from touching the lands out to 50 thou. all factors matter but this made the biggest diff. for me. Also all brand bullets do not shoot the same. Nosler is usually very accurate.
     
  6. herbeapuce

    herbeapuce Member

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    Nov 24, 2004
    Ok here we go , bear with me plz

    My rifle is a tikka t3 stainless varmint, 24 inches barrel and 1 in 10 in 25-06

    I started reloading about 6 mouths ago, but I can’t spend too much time a it

    I am still using my Rem and Winchester cases from when I use to buy factory ammo. I don't mismatch brand. I may shoot 30 Rem and then 65 win...the cases have been reloaded no more than 5 times each I would say.

    I use :


    Froster co-axial press
    Lee deluxe die kit
    Later bought a expensive froster benchrest seating die
    Lyman gravity scale, 2 cheap digital scales ( gemini-20 )
    I have a screwdriver type rcbs primer hole deburring tool ( that one to be used once only)
    Lee case cutter on my drill, Lee chamfer and deburr, also have rcbs deburring tool
    I do not have a thumbler , and I have stopped washing the case in water / vinager. Seems to me it wasn't doing much.
    I use the primer tool that came on my press. I do not have a dedicated primer tool
    I did once weigh all the cases and made groups, but they are all mismatched now, ( no difference so I gave up..)
    I have measured with my cleaning rod the max OAL for my rifle and I usually try to be .005 to .01 shorter

    So I take a case , deprime & neck size it , cut to length with the lee and my drill, chamfer inside ( I find I don’t have to deburr outside as I can't really see or feel a burr )
    Then I scrape the primer hole, then I prime.
    I take good care of measuring my powder but I suspect my scale(s) to be not so precise. If I alternate from one digital to the other digital, I always get a different reading. If I shake my tray and put back on scale, I sometime get a new reading… the errors are never more than 0.05 g though . (I will have a My Scale 250 in the mail soon if I don't get any better)
    I seat the bullet right way. now using 117 hornady interbond, used NBT 100g and 85g varmint


    Then I go to our 100 yard only range and test with my baush and lomb 6x24x40
    I do not clean my barrel every ? rounds (<-- plz put number there)
    I do wait 2 minutes between shots ( less right now as it’s winter here and cold )
    I start at minimum load in the recipe book and go up o.5g at the time. I always shoot 5 bullets groups. It seems my rifle does’t like anything pass minimum. If I get close to medium max load, it really opens up …
    I clean my rifle at home and back in safe.

    I am sure I am forgetting somethings , but that’s about it..

    what do you think ?

    (my question is : THA thing you did to your ammo to help your precision is ? )

    thanks in advance guys

    stef
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2013
  7. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Well-Known Member

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    Couple things right off the top. The cases need to be from the same batch. If this is fired factory casings you bought 20 at a time and you didn't segregate them into the boxes they came from the you need a bag of brass. Mix and match lots will cause fliers. Next , I would trust the beam scale a lot more than the electronic scales. When using the beam scale throw the charge just a bit light then trickle up. If you go over dump the charge and start over. Don't try to pick a few kernels out. You have some quality equipment to work with and some refining of your practices will get you there. Fix the brass and the possible charge drift and see where you are.
     
  8. herbeapuce

    herbeapuce Member

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    @ farout: are you saying you are annealing your cases many times ? I thought this was a one time deal...

    @ dakota1tn: I am considering Norma for my next cases... they are $160 per 100, north of the border

    and plz what tool are you using to take your measurement of the ogive ? Hornady Lock-N-Load ?

    thank you all for your time

    stef.
     
  9. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Well-Known Member

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    As for cleaning the rifle. If it is broken in then clean every 20 to 50 rounds or when it starts to open up. While you are fighting fliers I would clean every 11 rounds. Always shoot a fouling round down a clean barrel. So , clean then one fouler then ten recording rounds then clean again. Once you get a load down just clean when it opens the groups. After a while you will know you can go x number of rounds with that rifle before you need to clean.
     
  10. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Well-Known Member

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    Also , I don't lenght trim ever time. Usually every third to fith time will do. You don't have to buy the very best brass but it can help. I shoot plenty of Remington and Winchester brass but its not as consistent as lapua or last near as long.

    Bonded bullets often don't shoot well. Try the 115gr bt or the 117 sst bullets or the Sierra 120gr hpbt
     
  11. cowboy

    cowboy Well-Known Member

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    I know you asked for reloading suggestions only but I' ve got to ask you a couple things on your rifle before I chime in.
    Has your action been bedded, how do you torque your screws down onto your stock, barrel floated, and are you satisfied you have a good crown on barrel.

    You said your groups really open up when you approach med or upper end velocity is why I asked the rifle questions. That would not sit well with me. If I had a 25-06 that I had to run at 1/2 speed, well you may as well shoot a .243

    I will tell you that the best advice I ever got 40 years ago was keep everything consistant ALL THE TIME.

    I buy components in larger qty's with same lot numbers, that includes brass, primers, powder and bullets.

    Do you know what twist your barrel is - has a lot to do with what weight bullets to use.

    Another thing to consider is your shooting form , and trigger pull. Are you comfortable with the parallax on your scope. Last thing I would suggest is, I quit shooting and doing load evaluations at 100 yds many years ago. I finally got it through my thick skull I am not a bench rest shooter. Move out to 200 or 300.

    I have a rifle shooting Bergers that will shoot at 200 as good as it will at 100.

    From the amount of fliers you are getting I would say it is either miss matched components or something other than your ammo.

    Good luck and don't give up.
     
  12. dakota1tn

    dakota1tn Active Member

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    I feel the brass makes some diff. but not that much if the gun is a good shooting gun anyway. I use the hornady. I measure all of mine to within .001 either side of the length I want. I can take winchester brass and make most guns shoot .5 or less at 100 yrds. Just finished setting upl 2 243 win. for long distance. Both when finished..... shoots less than .5 @ 100. Every gun I have set up with the exception of 1 shoots less than .5 @ 100. Cleaning is also very important to most guns. This also takes time to find the sweet spot. Once the sweet spot is found most need to be cleaned between 10 and 15 rounds then a fouling shot. have seen some shoot better dirty than clean. Most guns will shoot better with the bullet anywhere from touching the lands to 50 thou. off. the most common seems to be 20 to 35 thou. I like athe Hodgen powders
     
  13. jkupper

    jkupper Well-Known Member

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    I would compare myself a novice compared to a lot of these other guys (even though I have been hand loading for ten years). What I can tell you is that using the same lot of brass, with similar weight in grains is important, so is making sure that all of your loads are as close to the same in powder measurements as you can get. The biggest difference between loads that I have seen is in using different powders. I leave everything the same and change powders, and them load for different charges of each powder. I am fortunate in that I load for a wide variety of calibers, so I have a good and varied powder supply. I have tried shooting 10 different powders at what is supposed to provide the same velocity and gotten ten different results. Some are definitely better results than others. Be patient and keep working. eventually you will find something that works for your gun. I almost gave up on my 30-06, but I did finally find something that worked very well after about 600 rounds of test firing! Have fun with it! I love my time at the loading bench almost as much as I enjoy my time at the range. Best of luck!

    Joe
     
  14. dakota1tn

    dakota1tn Active Member

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    This is how I start with a new gun. Make sure the barrel is floated!!!! I use flitz and polish the inside barrel for 30 to 40 min. I shoot one shot and clean until like new. Then 2 shots and clean until like new. then 5. Clean again and shoot 2 shoots. I find where the bullet touches the lands and load 2 of each with one grain less than max powder. Hodgdon. (my experience most guns shoot better faster than slower)2 touching lands then 2 @ 10 thou. 2 @ 15 20 25 30 35. If 2 of either touch bullet holes I load 2 more of the same and try them. I clean after every 12 to 14 shots. Also IF the bolt closes tight you nee to adjust your die down until it closes as easy as a factory round or close. I also aneal my brass after 4 fireings. The last 4 I set up.... I finally got a group that would at least touch a dime with 3 shots @ 100 yrds. Went up .5 grains on powder and then 1 grn on powder. The all would touch bullet holes or better for 10 to 12 shots. Then the group would open up. You need sand bags when shooting and shoot @ as small of a spot as you cross hairs will allow!! I measure groups diff. than gun makers or most people. I measure form outside of bullet hole to outside of bullet hole. my half in groups are 1/4 in groups according to gun makers.

    Ive been loading for 25 yrs but only started shooting long distance about 4 yrs ago. I still fell I have lots to learn but what I do seems to work!! ALSO REM!! WIND HAS SO MUCH TO DO WITH THE FLIGHT OF YOUR BULLET.