Needing to zero a new scope on my Savage LRH 308, I dropped into the loading room yesterday morning with the intent of producing some cheap rounds with which to get roughed in, saving the expensive ones for the final tweak. I have 1000 of the PPU 150 grain FMJ at my disposal so chose those as the bullet, and selected some WC852F surplus powder for the charge. All cases were once fired PPU commercial, Small Base FL sized and trimmed. Winchester Primers.
Normally I like to flare the case mouths of my reloads but I was in a hurry (read: "didn't care about accuracy") so I skipped that step and just seated the bullets into the cases for the first 10 rounds. Compared to seating bullets in flared cases, it felt terrible and rough. I checked the first 10 for concentricity of the loaded rounds and most came out to .006 inches run out with a few as high as .007 inches. I loaded another 10 and the results were pretty much the same. The next 20 I flared the case necks and as I expected, the seating was silky smooth and the run out was halved: I think .004" was the worst with most under .003" run out. This has been my experience in the past; no surprise there.
I then went back to the first twenty with the severe eccentricity and manually corrected half of them to match those of the rounds I'd flared, or, less than .003" run out. The Hornady tool allows you to do this. I then crimped all 40 of the rounds I loaded.
At the range I was surprised to see that these FMJ bullets group reasonably well with that load: about MOA with the "flared" loads. When roughly at my zero point, I tried the ones that had no flare and got about 2.25 MOA for two, five shot groups. Here's the interesting part; I next shot the ones I manually corrected on the Hornady unit and they were back at MOA.
Take away from the above what you will, but I was pleased that the Hornady tool did what it said it would, that I had yet another example that flaring works, and that I found a use for that WC852F powder that I have 16 pounds of. It was an interesting day.~Muir