Out of the box accuracy???

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Rwholt, Jan 4, 2014.

  1. Rwholt

    Rwholt New Member

    Dec 1, 2012
    I would not call myself experienced in shooting at all butI own a few rifles, mostly Remingtons, and get decent accuracy out of the box with factory ammo (1 to 1.5 moa). I recently bought a Cooper in 338-06. I intend to reload for it and just bought equipment and am learning how to reload. I got three boxes of ammo so I could shoot the gun right away. 180 accubond, 210 partiions and 225 accubond all by Nosler Custom. I have not been able to shoot better than 3 to 5 inch groups off a solid rest at 100yds with this ammo. After the first 10 or 15 shots I left the range and re-mounted the scope (tally rings Leup vx3 4.5-14) because I could not believe how wide the groups were. After re-mounting nothing changed. I called Cooper and they said it was the loads. Ok, I got their load data and I will reload their exact load for 338-06. (Sierra 215 GK, IMR 4064 49grs, COAL 3.286) My question is can reloading really make this much difference. I would expect this rifle to shoot sub moa easily. I can see getting any of my other rifles to sub moa by reloading but can I expect to get 3 to 5 inch groups down to sub moa by reloading? Any comment would be appreciated.
  2. MagnumManiac

    MagnumManiac Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    It is completely feasible to reduce those groups by handloading, but it won't just happen magically, and neither will 'their' load unless it has been shot in your rifle and is a 'known load' for YOUR rifle.
    I would be checking the action screws to see if they're too tight or too loose, and also how much contact their is between the action and the stock/bedding material, fore end pressure, if any, and if there is any twisting in the stock, if synthetic, or swelling and twisting if wood.
    How heavy is the trigger pull?
    This could have an effect on your groups.
    Do you touch the rifle ANYWHERE with your non trigger tugging hand?
    This can effect your groups badly, some rifles are sensitive to changing grip pressure along the fore end, and are effected by shifting in the front rest, unless placed in EXACTLT the same position for each shot, the POI can shift significantly. This is fairly rare, but does happen.

    When you start loading for it, the very first thing you need to determine is the length of the throat, the actual number isn't important.
    First take a case and put 2 narrow slits opposite each other in the neck, a Dremel cut-off wheel works wonders, size the neck about half way down and place a bullet just into the neck andccarefully chamber it in your rifle, cock and uncock the bolt a few times, then carefully withdraw the bolt and case, then measure the OAL, take note of it for future reference and that is where the start of the rifling is for THAT bullet. Do the same with each bullet type you want to use, as each bullet type will have a different profile and therefore will be different distances from the rifling.
    Once established, you then seat the bullets the amount LESS from the OAL that was touching to give you the amount from the rifling, or amount of 'jump'.

    I'm sure others will chime in with anything I may have missed.

  3. ZSteinle

    ZSteinle Well-Known Member

    Jan 30, 2008
    for what a cooper costs i would be sending that rifle right back!
  4. okie man

    okie man Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2013
    no kidding! I have a cz 527 in 223 that has yet to shoot a group bigger than 11/2'' with any factory or hand load. think I paid under $500 for it. my weatherby vanguard 257 shoots just about everything I tried under 2'' and I have less than $600 in it including scope. I would call cooper and talk to them about a gun that would not shoot a 2'' group with quality factory ammo.
  5. deadidarren

    deadidarren Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2011
  6. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

    Jun 11, 2010
    how much does that Cooper cost?

    1. I have a T/C in 44 mag that shoots 2.5" to 3" groups at 100 yards
    2. my two 30 Herrets shoot a little over an inch and a half at 100 yards
    3. my .222 shoots groups a.60"t 100 yards with a 15" barrel
    4. my 38-55 shoots in the 1.75" area in a Hi-Wall

    but the real insult is the 2500fps load that Cooper specs! I think I'd have a good gunsmith check this rifle out for you. Then send Cooper Arms a nice note with the rifle.

    Now what would I do:

    * try another set of rings and bases. I tried those a few years back under a high recoil rifle, and they just didn't work for me. I'd also change scopes with one I knew for sure was right. I'd also check the barrel for contact.
  7. Rwholt

    Rwholt New Member

    Dec 1, 2012
    I agree with you the Cooper specified load is pitiful. Regardless, after reading everyone's comments the gun is going back. Thanks for everyone's comments.
  8. Garycrow

    Garycrow Well-Known Member

    Jan 30, 2011
    Before you do anything, mount a different scope and try it. Something's obviously wrong and it might very well be the rifle. I doubt it's the ammo because even poor ammo in a good shooting rifle should shoot better than 3-5 inches. When I get results like you're getting I first check action screws and scope mounts for tightness, then if that doesn't work I swap scopes. Scopes or mounting problems have been my problem at least 50% of the time. Scopes go bad a lot more than most people realize. Most people just don't shoot enough or can't shoot well enough to know that the scope is bad.