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Thread: Cartridge, powder, bullet wt./shape versus resonance and me

  1. #1

    Cartridge, powder, bullet wt./shape versus resonance and me

    I've just acquired a sub 1 moa 308 rifle and am looking at hand loading.
    1/ Is there an ideal procedure to follow to eliminate each variable (or optimise each components contribution to the result - grouping) before you get down to the ultimate variable, i.e. yourself! The one that gets me is resonance - at least I think I have that factor correctly named.

    2/ When you start hand loading, how may bullets of each combination of variables do you make/fire to give you a norm' for that combination for comparison with others?

    3/ Do you make your comparisons at one range only, say 100 yards, or is that another variable. i.e do cartridge combinations perform better at one range than another or if you've got it right at 100 yds, you've got it right at all distances?

    I'm sure there's more to ask but that'll probably do as a 'starter for 10'.
    Thx in advance, Paul

  2. #2
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    I've only got limited experience (well, I've only got one rifle) but the sequence I followed was:

    1. Bullet weight (I settled on 150gr)
    2. Powder (both type and number of grains)
    3. Overall Length
    4. Primers
    5. Then it was down to things like neck sizing the brass rather than full-length sizing.

    Reloading becomes addictive, but to be honest by the time I'd completed number 3 above it was all pretty academic, as I realised that - so far as real life stalking was concerned - the rifle was far more accurate that I'd ever be capable of shooting.

    Enjoy reloading!


  3. #3

    Reloading can be as simple or as complicated as you wish to make it, it is really a bit of a black art. If you have someone close by who can put you on the right track I would speak to them nicely.

    The best thing that I would recommend for you to do is to is, decide on what weight of bullet you want to shoot and then load in accordance with the information available. This information is in reloading manuals, which I suggest you get yourself and read thoroughly at least twice before reloading. You will see there is a never exceed limit posted in the powder weight information, take 10% off this and then work your way up to it in 0.5 grain increments, keeping a wary eye out for pressure signs as you go. Load five rounds for each weight of powder and see what that brings, you should be able to tell which is the best for your rifle, a chronograph although not essential is really handy in this development. When you have found which is the best load for you out of your development, you can now fine tune this.

    Every time you ,make a change, whether in component or seating depth, there will be a difference in the reaction to it by your rifle. So you see it really is a case of deciding what you are after. As willie_gunn said you can settle on a hunting reload or pursue the ultimate round for accuracy, but the hardest thing to maintain consistency in is you enjoy.


  4. #4
    Bullet weight will be determined by many things, whats available, what you want them to do, barrel twist rate,
    once you have a bullet selected, find the best brass you can get and buy lots. follow case prep steps that are usually used by benchrest shooters, (i weigh them and sort into batches),trim to length, turn necks,chamfer and beburr, use a primer pocket uniformer,
    use good quality primers (i use federal match primers for everything)
    I choose a powder type mainly based on what's available/recomended
    Seat your bullets just off the lands for starters, work up your load firing groups of 4 or 5 shots (let it cool down)
    select your most accurate load and if you want load another batch to cover the increments between the load below and the load above (i've never needed to do this).
    by now you should be getting close time to mess about with seating depth to see if you can shrink the groups some more.
    if your going for it get a gauge and check your loaded rounds for run out.
    A lot of this depends on what your rifle is like.
    for my Custom 223 with a match chamber i do most of this but for my 6.5 i just resize, trim, throw powder straight from a harrel measure, stuff a bullet in them and away to go (still shoots 1/2" if i do my bit)
    Very important, test your loads at the range you want to shoot at my 308 would shoot smaller groups at 200m than it would at 100m.

    This is just the way i do it i'm sure we all do it different, if you want to buy some good reading material check out Sinclair international's website.

    Hope this is of some use.

  5. #5
    Many thanks guys. I'm listening to everyone at the moment but I guess the only way is to suck it and see based on what you've heard and seen others do. Thanks again.

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