Wildcats and the Kahn at 1 mile plus....

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Fiftydriver, Mar 8, 2005.

  1. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    Well, I will admit that I was a bit pumped up by reading about GoodGroupers success and the other boys at 2000 yards. The weather was nice today and I had a bit of time so I headed up to my long distance range for a little shooting.

    I have been using the 300 gr and 350 gr ULD bullets from Wildcat Bullets in my 338 Kahn and both have been shooting extremely well at 500 yards, averaging in the 1.5" range if I do my part. I really wanted to see what they would do at some serious range.

    The farthest I have ever shot on paper is 1000 yards even though I have shot at targets of opportunity out to the 2500 yard range quite a bit, I have never tried to get a group on paper at ranges beyond 1000 yards but I was determined to do so.

    I set up my target, sorry, no fancy pics of the shoot will get some when I test the 350 gr pills. Being limited by ranging equipment I had to make due with what I had, my Leica 1200. I set the 4x4 foot target up and also set a dialing rock about 10 yards to the left of the target board to dial in on before the group on paper was taken.

    The target board was covered by white freezer paper and then 1 square foot piece of dark paper was taped to the center of the board. The 16 square feet of white really stands out on the prairie and the dark square was the perfect size to target on with the 16x SS scope.

    After the target was set up I drove back to the rims overlooking the canyon I would be shooting across. These rims run along the sight path for a good distance so I parked the truck at one point and ranged back to the target, 1020 yards. I then left the truck there and started walking farther down the rims until I came to the property line. Lining the truck up perfectly with the target and taking a range to the truck I got a range of 770 yards. I marked the spot where the 1760 yard mark was and then went back to get the truck and drove it back and set up the gear.

    With a 500 yard zero I dialed in the guestimate of MOAs to get me close to the dialing in rock at one mile. The rock was roughly 2 feet long and 1 foot tall. I leveled the rifle held a solid mil into the wind which was around 5 mph and let one of the 300 gr ULDs go.

    The bullet landed perfectly centered horizontally with the target rock but 10 yards low. I dialed in more MOAs and took another shot. This one landed right around a foot high, again on center.

    I took out 1 moa and then took a three shot group. SHot one cut the top edge of the rock on center, shot two landed just off the bottom edge of the rock and shot three landed on teh bottom edge of the rock. Looked to be a 14 to 15" group, I was plenty satisfied with this and felt confident getting on paper.

    I was a little concerned as my velocities were running a bit higher in variation then usual, around 30 fps.

    I lined the Kahn up on the dark center target using the first mil dot to the right as a aiming point to allow for the breeze. I tickled the 6 oz trigger and could see no sign of any dust around the target board, so far so good.

    In preparing for the second shot, the wind picked up slighly so I gave another 1/4 mil into the wind and let the shot go. Again, no dust from the impact, again good.

    For shot three the wind had settled back down so I took the same hold as the first shot and again no impact could be seen around the target. I had either landed all three on the target or I missed the hill!!!

    Since I had only taken seven shots at this point I really did not want to pack everything up this early. I found a rock at which I guessed to be around 2000 yards away farther down the canyon. This rock was about 18" roughly square and made a good target. I dialed in for what I guessed was 2000 yards and let a shot go. At this range I allowed for two mils into the breeze and landed pretty much center again but about 30 feet down the hill. Obviously this was a bit farther then what I had guessed. I cranked in more MOAs and on the second attempt landed roughly 10 feet high. At this setting, the first mil dot up was nearly a dead center hold for the impact so I switched from the main crosshair to the first dot up on the reticle.

    I fired three down range at the rock. The first landed about a foot to the right of the rock and about a foot low, the second dropped nearly 5 feet low for some reason, I was kind of baffled as velocity was within 5 fps of the first shot. Shot three landed at what seemed to be around a foot and a half higher then the first shot. SO I had two shots at what looked like around 18" apart and one that dropped well out of the group. I decided to take another shot to see what would happen with a three shot group. This shot looked to land on top of the first shot making a very nice three shot group less the dropped shot????

    I decided I had better get back to the shop and actually get some work done so I packed up all the gear and drove the 15 minute drive back to the target. You know you are shooting some range when a round trip travel time is 30 minutes with a 4x4!!

    The target was positioned roughly 100 yards off the trail so I ran up to see what if anything had landed on target.

    I first noticed a bullet hole just below the 1 foot target square. As I got closer to the board I noticed the two holes on the bottom of the board that were so close I simply could not believe it. In fact I had to dig the bullets out of the dirt to prove it to myself.

    [​IMG]

    As youcan see again, the only real group variation is vertical. This was common with all the groups I shot today. In fact all groups consisted of two shots close with one shot roughly 3/4 moa straight above those two. All were exactly this way except the one shot that fell out at the longer range shooting.

    Also all group variation was totally vertical. Horizontal variation was around 10" at most for all the groups fired.

    [​IMG]

    As youcan see these two landed pretty close. Now I am not saying this is skill by anymeans, luck is a beautiful thing at times, especially at this range. Its on paper though so thats all I care about.

    The shot that landed in the center of the target board landed dead center headlong into a couple ton sandstone rock that was behind the target board. It actually penetrated about 4" into the rock!!

    The Wildcat Bullets are built with an extremely heavy jacket so expansion at this range is rather limited unless heavy resistance is encountered.

    [​IMG]

    As the scale reports this bullet lose very little to the rock on impact. Penetration is never a problem with the Wildcats.

    After this I walked up to where I had targeted the rock that I guessed to be around 2000 yards. It was probably more like 2200 yards as it was across another small canyon that I could not pick out from the angle I was at.

    The group was probably around 20" or so for the three good shots, I still do not know why the one shot fell out of the group so far???

    Anyway, it proved to be a good test and the Wildcats easily performed up to my satisfaction.

    When dialed in a Basketball would be in serious trouble of being deflated at 1 mile!!

    Next up are the 350 gr pills to see how they compare at the same range. At one mile they should actually start holding more velocity and less drop then the 300 gr version that starts out around 250 fps faster.

    Wind drift should be noticably less as well comparing the .820 B.C. of the 300gr to the .975 B.C. of the 350 gr bullet.

    WIll be intesting to see. I will be sure to take my digital camera along for that test to get some better range pics.

    Good Shooting!!

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  2. brian b

    brian b Well-Known Member

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    Fiftydriver,
    I hate to speak for Goodgrouper but if you find us something to shoot at (vermin of some sort) we will make a Roadie to MONTANA with all the ranging and shooting equiptment to have some fun.
    B
     

  3. ricka0

    ricka0 Well-Known Member

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  4. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    Brian B,

    That would be a blast but I fear there really is not a high volume of live targets in my area. I think we need to meet half way and cut down the populartion of chucks in Idaho, I hear they have a ton of them down there in the Hells Canyon area.

    Would be fun to the the big guns together though. We need to wait a bit longer though, I am planning on building a heavy V-Block chambered for my 257 Allen Mag. Impact is not quite so dramatic but ballistic performance, at least compared to the 300 gr 338 bullets is significantly better. Just need to build the platform for testing. Probably a 34 to 36" pipe as soon as Dan Lilja gets the 1-7 twist tooling made up for me we will be in business. Same .820 b.c. of the 300 gr ULD using the 156 gr ULD but will get around 3450 to 3500 fps in the longer pipe I am predicting!!!

    Just need a good spotter as the impact will not be quite as dramatic as the 300 gr or 350 gr pills!!! Course with recoil like a 223 heavy rifle it will be pretty easy to see what happens down range.

    Want to see how my little 1/4 bore runs with the kings of the extreme range crowd!!!

    Later, we will have to do something here soon, even if its just to plink or make gravel. We need to go for that elusive 3000 yard hit!!!

    Good Shooting!!

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  5. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    B1g_b0re,

    Funny you should mention a long barreled 375. I have been trying to talk a customer into building a 375 Kahn for a while now but no one will bite. I figured a 400 gr ULD in this round with a 36" barrel would be mighty impressive at extreme range. Also very easy to load for, just chamber a standard loaded 378 Wby and fire and your there.

    True the standard 375 Ultra or 378 Wby would work great but we need a big brother to the 338 Kahn!!!

    45" barrel, better be a 1.5" diameter at least to control barrel whip. Would be neat to see what she would do though!!

    Good Shooting!!

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  6. 4ked Horn

    4ked Horn Writers Guild

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    Nice story fifty. Seems like I'm not the only one who had luck on their side this weekend. If you guys decide to do anything in Idaho and there is room let me know. I don't have alot of time to travel for a weekend but if I can get to it saturday evening and come home late sunday evening I'm up for it.

    So ya hear that hells canyon has a ton of chucks eh? I'll go find out and let ya know.(hehehe /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smirk.gif) Any other place you've "heard" about?

    Just joking. I will be spending most of my chuck time within 50 miles of Boise or Twin Falls this year. You know, work all week just to spend it all on gas.

    Thanks again for the story. Looking forward to any pictures of shooting you care to post.
     
  7. Shawn Carlock

    Shawn Carlock Sponsor

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    Kirby,
    Good post, I am getting ready to test the 300 gr Wildcat .338 bullets when I get back from Mesa Az. next week. I found a spot to do the mile but like almost everyone else it is cross canyon work. I think that this cross canyon work is at least some of the problem causing vertical group size ( I have had the same problems ). I have experenced the occasional dropped or "flown over" shot myself. I believe that this is from unreadable wind / thermal conditions and not equipment related. I have had variations of several feet @ 1550 yards with an extreme velocity spread of only 13 fps, but like you I had only 3-5 inches of windage. I think that this is just life in the canyons.
     
  8. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    Shawn,

    Thanks for the ideas, they seem logical to me. Where I shoot the winds come up a sharp face of the rims where the shooting platform is and at the target, the winds are grenerally stronger in a down draft direction.

    Finding a 1 mile range over flat land is often tricky but I will look.

    Have you played much with truing up the nose lengths on your bullets for added consistancy at long range?

    I have read of others doing this and it makes sense to me since every HP bullet I have ever shot had some degree of variation in nose length. Some severe.

    Would be interested in your thoughts on this as well as all the others doing this same shooting. How do the nose uniformers work for you, are they worth the time and slight lose in B.C.??

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  9. Shawn Carlock

    Shawn Carlock Sponsor

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    Kirby,

    I prepped the nose with a tool I made and it dropped an additional 11 inches at 1140 yards, but it cut the vertical size of my group almost in half. Looking at the wildcat bullets I don't think it will be the issue it is with the SMK. The biggest difference I have noticed with the SMK is using ones with the same ogive to base length reduced the extreme velocity spread quite a bit for me. It is tough for me to find over 400-500 yards of flat ground to test on around here. I have been fighting vertical wind / thermal / shear issues for ever. Hey I have an idea, lets build a warehouse 30' wide, 200 feet tall and 6000 feet long for a test lab. People that say you couldn't spend a 100 million lottery without giving some away never met long range shooters. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif
     
  10. ricka0

    ricka0 Well-Known Member

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    This mile+ shooting is <font color="red [b">SO COOL[/b] ] </font> maybe it deserves it's own forum.

    [ QUOTE ]
    control barrel whip

    [/ QUOTE ] In Lilja's excellent article Barrel Lengths and Velocities in the 338/378 Weatherby Magnum he writes [ QUOTE ]
    At the beginning I mentioned that the barrel was whippy at the longer lengths. The photograph accompanying this article shows the Geske actioned rifle with the barrel at its full 46" length. When I shot it at this length, for a moment I could actually <font color="red"> see the barrel whip like a fly rod </font> during recoil.

    [/ QUOTE ]
     
  11. goodgrouper

    goodgrouper Well-Known Member

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    Kirby,
    Love the story! Congrats on the group. I would love to make a roadie to Big sky country to shoot with you. There are some sweet chuck spots in Montana I've been told. We don't need lots of chucks, just one that's really FAR off!

    I agree with Shawn on several of his comments. We shoot at 1500 yard chucks in one place in Idaho over a huge canyon and it always is funny to watch the thermals come up out of the canyon and toss your bullet 5 feet higher from shot to shot!

    I also agree with Shawn on the ogive length and meplat uniformity. On our range the other day, the ogive length was causing the bullets to change velocity about 50 fps because of the longer bearing surface on some. We were sitting there on the bench and watching the chronograph as we shot at 2000 yards. Every shot that was 25 feet faster would land about a minute and a half higher! We also noticed some that dropped way down below the gong but remained the same velocity! There was no down drafts that we could tell, so it must have been the bad meplats on the MKs. Read this: www.davidtubb.com/tcom_images/reloading/bmu_one.html

    I ordered a BMU from Kevin Cram yesterday and I will let you know how it affects 2000 yard shooting on or about the 20th of March.



    There is one other thing that you might be interested in. After reviewing the tape of our shoot, I began to notice that the bullets that landed right usually also landed low, and the bullets that went left usually always landed high. Then it dawned on me that I had read about this before and had just forgot about it in the excitement of the day. It is called the Magnus effect. You may already know this, but I will explain it for others who don't. This phenomenon is not gyroscopic drift which is a more common term. Magnus has to do with the rotation of the bullet in relation to the winds current direction. It is explained wonderfully in the book, "precision shooting at 1000 yards" on page 116-117.
    Here is the scenario:
    No wind. You hold center bull, and you hit dead center. Now there is a wind from the right to left. You know that if you hold dead center again, the bullet will impact slightly to the left. So you hold (or click) into the wind the correct amount and fire. The bullet hits center but <font color="red">high! </font> You are shocked, but think it was just a fluke and shoot again. But now, the wind is coming from left to right. So you outsmart the wind and hold (or click) left into the wind the correct amount and fire. You hit dead center, but it hits <font color="blue">low!</font> Ok, what happened. It is Magnus! It is simply a phenomenon that takes place because a right-to-left wind pushes a right-handed twisted bullet left and high, and a left-to-right wind pushes the same bullet right and low! And the farther out you shoot, the worse this thing gets. At 100 yards, it is about half a bullet diameter in certain conditions. At 2 grand, it could be 20 inches! Man this is technical, but it sure is fun!
    Later, -goodgrouper
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Kirby,
    Excellent post, and outstanding performance! Ya did good Bro! Thanks for sharing....
     
  13. 4ked Horn

    4ked Horn Writers Guild

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    Ya know Shawn, I'm from up there in Hayden and in 1984 to 1992 we used to shoot out on the farmers fields north of hayden road and east of hwy 41. I wasn't even really aware of long range hunting then but I would have been able to shoot a mile and never leave the same owners property. Too bad that is all getting developed.

    I cant for the life of me think of any place to even reccomend that even comes close to a mile of flat(ish) land to shoot on that dosen't have houses on it now. Give me some time to look at my topographic maps and maybe I can find something near by.

    I just took a look and I'll tell ya, you are in the middle of a very large drainage basin that runs from sandpoint to spokane and beyond. If you can't find any unpopulated flat stuff there I don't know where you would go. You would be even harder pressed to find anything long distance up in the mountains. You might be able to find an old clear cut mountain side that is a mile away but you would never see the impact.

    Sorry.
     
  14. 4ked Horn

    4ked Horn Writers Guild

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    [ QUOTE ]
    This mile+ shooting is SO COOL ] maybe it deserves it's own forum.


    [/ QUOTE ]

    We had it. We don't have it now.


    Don't ask. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif