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Thread: Bullet hitting lands

  1. #1

    Bullet hitting lands

    I would appreciate some help from those with more experience. I am reloading some Sierra 160gn SPRN (1750) in 6.5x55. I have a max length (head to Ogive) using comparator of 92.75mm (3.651") and have set my seated bullet at 92mm. 30Thou back. I usually run at about 10thou back with SST and other 140 gn bullets.
    I am finding closing the bolt is hard and on opening the bolt I can feel resistance as the bullet is being pulled out of the rifling. On further inspection there are rifling marks on the bullet. I assume this is to do with the shape of the bullet being rather blunt and as the bolt travels in and the sprung extractor is against the head it is pushing bullet into lands before extractor is pushed home.
    I have measured col after removing from chamber and it appears that bullet is not being seated any further due to this but I am concerned.
    Any ideas?
    Thanks guys.
    PS these rounds are to be for load development to hopefully find a accurate one for a coming moose/boar hunt. So I want them right, don't want to fluff up a chance if one should present itself.

  2. #2
    Seat the bullets deeper and don't fret over the distance to the lands. Accuracy does not come from a certain distance to the lands. Factory ammo is loaded without regard as to the distance to the lands of anybody's gun. The best commercial match ammo in the world isn't loaded to someone's comparator measurement.

    Ignore it. You don't want a hunting load with the bullet into the rifling. Seat them to magazine length and shorter if necessary.~Muir

  3. #3
    Thanks Muir. I continued to seat bullet but even by the time I got the bullet set back to 88mm which is a whooping 4.75mm back and the bullet is now along way back in the case, I marked the bullet with marker pen and kept trying in the chamber, but still felt like bullet sticking which just isn't possible even accounting for depth of bolt face and extractor. So on closer inspection it appears on this case and the other 11 I made up I have not knocked them back far enough and a shinny mark can be seen on the throat. I suspect this is what is sticking on extraction. So do I need to pull the bullets and then with primer remover taken out size these cases again to allow for some expansion or would it be ok to set bullets to say 40 thou back using comparator and leave the throat as it is? They do load into chamber ok all be it with a slightly tight bolt.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by woodmaster View Post
    Thanks Muir. I continued to seat bullet but even by the time I got the bullet set back to 88mm which is a whooping 4.75mm back and the bullet is now along way back in the case, I marked the bullet with marker pen and kept trying in the chamber, but still felt like bullet sticking which just isn't possible even accounting for depth of bolt face and extractor. So on closer inspection it appears on this case and the other 11 I made up I have not knocked them back far enough and a shinny mark can be seen on the throat. I suspect this is what is sticking on extraction. So do I need to pull the bullets and then with primer remover taken out size these cases again to allow for some expansion or would it be ok to set bullets to say 40 thou back using comparator and leave the throat as it is? They do load into chamber ok all be it with a slightly tight bolt.
    I'm confused. By throat, do you mean neck or shoulder? Just for the matter of case size, if the bolt closes you can shoot them. But, where is the base of the bullet in all of this??~Muir

  5. #5
    I don't understand your metric dimensions. Can you take a photo of the loaded round and your calliper showing the measurement in inches? 3.651 inches can't be right in a 6.5 x 55 for COL. The book says 3.150 COL max.

    Where is the extra half inch coming from? What rifle are you loading for? Regards JCS
    Last edited by jcampbellsmith; 08-11-2012 at 07:35.

  6. #6
    I'm guessing the neck wasn't re-sized fully and the base of the neck where it meets the shoulder is marginally too big, happened to me using a lee classic loader where I wasn't pressing the cases far enough into the die. JCS sorted me out and pulled a stack of bullets I had loaded but couldn't close the bolt on!...then again, I could be wrong here, just a guess. hope you find the answer you're looking for :-)

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Muir View Post
    Seat the bullets deeper and don't fret over the distance to the lands. Accuracy does not come from a certain distance to the lands.
    On the contrary, it's one of the biggest variables that the handloader can control. As an example, my first centrefire rifle was a Ruger M77, bought new. It would shoot to an inch (3-round groups) with Norma 100gr factory ammo. But my first handload, using a different manufacturer's bullet but also 100gr, shot to three inches even though it was loaded to the manufacturer's specified OAL. By seating the bullets out further, i.e. closer to the lands, the rifle shot better than even with Norman factory ammo. However, trickling and weighing individual powder charges is a complete waste of time if the bullet is in the wrong place with respect to the lands.

    Another example is a Parker-Hale 1200TX I have. In September 2011 in ideal conditions, in the hands of an army sniper it was shooting 3-4MOA at 1,000 yards. Over the winter, I measured the freebore and tailored a load for it, seating the bullet 0.030" from the lands (the previous load had been loaded to factory OAL and was a heavier bullet). In April 2012, in ideal conditions, I shot the rifle at 600 yards. It shot to 1 MOA. A report and the target score card are here http://www.teessideshooters.org.uk/index2.htm Click on Gallery then the item on the new 7.62mm rifle.

    Quote Originally Posted by Muir View Post
    Factory ammo is loaded without regard as to the distance to the lands of anybody's gun.
    [snip]~Muir
    That's somewhat misleading. Of course, factory ammo is loaded with regards to the distance to the lands: it's loaded so that it will be clear of the lands no matter what rifle you have. In other words, a one size fits all. It has to be. Yes, it isn't tailored to any specific rifle (how could it be?).

    What the OP should do is this. Take a resized cartridge and trim to the correct length. Take a hacksaw and cut a slot in the cartridge neck along the case axis. Tidy the cut with a file. Take a new bullet, seat it to the desired length. 'Paint' the bullet with a CD maker. Don't use a generic felt tip pen, but a CD marker. They lay down a very thin film of ink. Seat the bullet. If you see land marks, seat the bullet 0.010" deeper and repeat. (The easiest way to do this is to use arbour shims under the die. Set the die higher than required, and remove shims to lower teh die and seat the bullet deeper. It save a lot of faffing about. I got mine from Sinclair years ago.)

    When it appears that the bullet is just clear of the lands, inspect the bullet with a magnifying glass - you might see the slightest of marks. Now you know where you lands are. Keep that cartridge and mark it with the date. Later, when your rifle has fired 1,000 rounds, you can repeat the exercise and measure the erosion in the rifle's throat by adding shims (or otherwise raising the die) from your original position. In a .243 I owned, the lands had been eroded by 0.10" and that's how much further out I had to seat the bullets.

    Hope this helps.

    -JMS

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by JMS906 View Post
    However, trickling and weighing individual powder charges is a complete waste of time if the bullet is in the wrong place with respect to the lands.
    I load for 3 calibres now
    .270, .243 and .222
    I load for 3 different .270s, A Parker Hale, A BSA and a John Dickson "Caledonian"
    1x .222 and 1x .243

    I couldn't tell you where the lands are on any of these rifles
    The Interlocks I load for .270 and .243 get loaded to "just below the cannulure"
    The VMax I load for the .222 get loaded "so they fit the magazine"

    All powder charges are done by volume measure scoops
    Cases are prepared by neck sizing only in a Lee Loader

    they all shoot better than factory ammo at sub 1MOA (in fact I had a touching group from 100gr .243!)



    Quote Originally Posted by JMS906 View Post
    the lands had been eroded by 0.10" and that's how much further out I had to seat the bullets.
    your lands had eroded by 2.6mm?!
    what happened if you didnt reseat an extra .1"? did it turn into a shotgun?
    did all the lands errode exactly 2.6mm?
    assuming a liner errosion rate the accuracy of your rifle must have been dropping off all the time before you measured the distance to the "erroded lands"




    OP
    pull the bullet and chamber the empty case
    sounds like brass issue rather than bullet issue

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by PKL View Post
    I'm guessing the neck wasn't re-sized fully and the base of the neck where it meets the shoulder is marginally too big, happened to me using a lee classic loader where I wasn't pressing the cases far enough into the die. JCS sorted me out and pulled a stack of bullets I had loaded but couldn't close the bolt on!...then again, I could be wrong here, just a guess. hope you find the answer you're looking for :-)
    Sounds about right to me, pull the bullets, deprime and start again paying careful attention to case length and resizing, and don't get too anal about distance to the lands as per Muir's suggestion

    John
    A clever man knows his strengths, a wise man knows his weaknesses

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by JMS906 View Post
    On the contrary, it's one of the biggest variables that the handloader can control. As an example, my first centrefire rifle was a Ruger M77, bought new. It would shoot to an inch (3-round groups) with Norma 100gr factory ammo. But my first handload, using a different manufacturer's bullet but also 100gr, shot to three inches even though it was loaded to the manufacturer's specified OAL. By seating the bullets out further, i.e. closer to the lands, the rifle shot better than even with Norman factory ammo. However, trickling and weighing individual powder charges is a complete waste of time if the bullet is in the wrong place with respect to the lands.

    Another example is a Parker-Hale 1200TX I have. In September 2011 in ideal conditions, in the hands of an army sniper it was shooting 3-4MOA at 1,000 yards. Over the winter, I measured the freebore and tailored a load for it, seating the bullet 0.030" from the lands (the previous load had been loaded to factory OAL and was a heavier bullet). In April 2012, in ideal conditions, I shot the rifle at 600 yards. It shot to 1 MOA. A report and the target score card are here http://www.teessideshooters.org.uk/index2.htm Click on Gallery then the item on the new 7.62mm rifle.



    That's somewhat misleading. Of course, factory ammo is loaded with regards to the distance to the lands: it's loaded so that it will be clear of the lands no matter what rifle you have. In other words, a one size fits all. It has to be. Yes, it isn't tailored to any specific rifle (how could it be?).

    What the OP should do is this. Take a resized cartridge and trim to the correct length. Take a hacksaw and cut a slot in the cartridge neck along the case axis. Tidy the cut with a file. Take a new bullet, seat it to the desired length. 'Paint' the bullet with a CD maker. Don't use a generic felt tip pen, but a CD marker. They lay down a very thin film of ink. Seat the bullet. If you see land marks, seat the bullet 0.010" deeper and repeat. (The easiest way to do this is to use arbour shims under the die. Set the die higher than required, and remove shims to lower teh die and seat the bullet deeper. It save a lot of faffing about. I got mine from Sinclair years ago.)

    When it appears that the bullet is just clear of the lands, inspect the bullet with a magnifying glass - you might see the slightest of marks. Now you know where you lands are. Keep that cartridge and mark it with the date. Later, when your rifle has fired 1,000 rounds, you can repeat the exercise and measure the erosion in the rifle's throat by adding shims (or otherwise raising the die) from your original position. In a .243 I owned, the lands had been eroded by 0.10" and that's how much further out I had to seat the bullets.

    Hope this helps.

    -JMS
    Thanks for sharing your experiences.
    You misunderstand what I'm saying. I am not saying that this isn't important with regard to accuracy, I'm saying that factory ammunition is not loaded to a set distance from say, your rifle, or my rifle, or JAYB's rifle, yet is capable of very good accuracy. Factory Match ammunition also is loaded without respect to any one individual chamber. I recently shot some Federal Gold Match in my 308. It was loaded to SAAMI spec length and was by far the most accurate ammo I have shot in my Savage yet no one at Federal ever asked to measure the chamber/throat on my Savage before loading it.

    As I have said before, with the exception of cast bullets in rifles, I never measure the distance from the lands for a hunting rifle. I start my loading with the bullet seated to minimum allowable OAL and work outward to the length of the magazine. Most often, very fine accuracy is had with the bullet somewhere in that neighborhood. From there, I tinker with primers or other aspects of the load.

    Too many people spend too much time and money agonizing over the distance from the lands instead of paying attention to other details. Do what you like but that's my take on it.~Muir

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