What do these groups mean???

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by buckbrush, Mar 25, 2010.

  1. buckbrush

    buckbrush Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    282
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
    Just wondering if anyone can tell me if these groups mean anything in particular about my gun, my loads, etc. I’ve had all three of these come out of my 338 Edge which I’ve been struggling with.

    Thanks.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Russ Hatch

    Russ Hatch Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    241
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2008
    Need more info, load, range, conditions, scope?
     

  3. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,380
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Well If I was shooting a provin gun and load I would say it's your trigger pull and breathing not knowing anything else about the situation.

    Jon
     
  4. buckbrush

    buckbrush Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    282
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
    300 gr SMK 0.015 off the lands typically yields groups like #1. Jammed into the lands yields groups like number 3 and 0.040" yields groups like number 2.

    Loads are either 92 gr of H-1000 or 94 of Retumbo and CCI250's...both have given the same groups. These groups are at 100 yards and are between 0.8 and 1.2 MOA.

    Just wondering if my loads are the problem This gun is not shooting well and after 150 rounds is still a copper mine...

    Thanks.
     
  5. dirtball

    dirtball Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    I would say, go back to group #1 and move it in and out (probably in since jammed gives you two close and a flier) in .003 to .005 increments until you find the best group and then adjust your load up and down in .3 to .5 grain increments and some where in there you should find THE load.
    Dave
     
  6. Jinx-)

    Jinx-) Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    693
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    I would still retest #3, just go back -0.005" and fire off cold shot before firing any groups, on #1 go up another +0.005
     
  7. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,380
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Let some one else shoot the rifle for groups
     
  8. tackb

    tackb Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    178
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    don't shoot 9 shot groups?
     
  9. tackb

    tackb Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    178
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    just kidding , 2-3 could be a loose swivel on your bipod or just trigger control maybe even flinching? get someone to watch you as you shoot and watch for trigger snatching or flinching ?

    try shooting groups with another proven rifle , this will eliminate the squisy bit behind the rifle ?
     
  10. SES50

    SES50 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    268
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    I would go shoot the rifle out at 300-400 yards and see what the group size looks like. My 338 Lapua with 300grn SMKs shoots around 1MOA groups that look like all of those at 100 yards and shoots around .3-.5 MOA groups at 300 yards. I now do all my load development between those distances. I only zero the rifle at 100 yards after the load development is completed.

    SES50
     
  11. Jinx-)

    Jinx-) Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    693
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    I usually shoot 8 - 10 to see pattern, shoot 5 atleast :D
     
  12. Robbin

    Robbin Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    170
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2008
    That's funny! We've got a friend that we call "OUR CONTROL GROUP", when we get stumped we make him shoot for us. He usually proves there is NOTHING wrong with the rifle or the load. :)
     
  13. Tikkamike

    Tikkamike Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,355
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    I agree with Jinx Shoot more shots, 5 is good 10 is better. Gives you a good pattern 3 shots don't give you enough info!!
     
  14. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

    Messages:
    6,848
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2004
    First off, load development with the 300 gr SMK is often not best done at 100 yards. Some rifles will shoot very tight 100 yard groups, most will shoot better moa groups at longer range.

    Plus, at longer ranges, you will be able to read the groups much better. If you have access to 500 yards, shoot at that range, of only 300 yards, do what you can. The longer the range the better but conditions need to be good the farther out you shoot or your just adding more variables to the equation.

    Personally 500 yards on paper is where I would recommend.

    Next, with all due respect, I would never shoot 10 shot strings with a rifle in this class. Main reason is simply because bore temps will get to high after 3 or 4 firings. From shot 5 to 10 you will be doing serious damage to your throat. Some will say they let the barrel cool between shots, in that case its not really shooting 10 shot strings, its simply shooting 10, 1 shot groups. In that case, no problem but you will chew up most of a day doing much load development this way.

    Again, in my opinion, three shot groups are the most valuable for large magnums but one three shot group means very little. Any load can punch a nice even triangle and any load can string rounds horizontally or vertically for any one three shot group.

    Set up at 500 yards, shoot 3 to 5 three shot groups with each load. Plot point of impact for each group compared to point of aim, measure group size and observe group shape. This will tell you much more about each load.

    In all honesty, and I apologize if this sounds overly simplistic, load up 50 rounds with load #1, get off paper and go out and work on your field shooting by taking one shot out of a cold barrel at targets of opportunity just like in a big game hunting situation.

    I tell my customers to get off paper as soon as they can. Shooting on paper alot tends to lead to a condition I refer to as tinkeritis which is simply the believe that the grass is always greener with another load or there is some magical load that will get you that mystical 1 hole group at 100 yards. perhaps but with a rifle in this class, likely not.

    I would bet that if you had an accurate drop chart matched to your #1 load, you could set up from 0 to 1000 yards and put first shot within 1/2 moa of point of aim out to that range limit easily.

    paper groups at 100 yards is for all intent and purpose meaningless to the long range shooter other then setting up the rifle for its zero. A 338 Edge is designed for one purpose, hammering big game at long range, not 100 yard paper punching and again, the 300 gr SMK will generally shoot tighter moa groups at longer ranges then at 100 yards.

    Stretch it out and see what it will do.