Where to go next?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Bigeclipse, Oct 31, 2014.

Next step?

Poll closed Nov 30, 2014.
  1. Load several different charge groups, pick best at 100/200 verify at 200/300 yards and call it good

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  2. OCW at 100 Yards

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  3. OCW at 200 Yards

    3 vote(s)
    30.0%
  4. Ladder at 300 Yards

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  5. other

    1 vote(s)
    10.0%
  1. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    All,
    I realize this is a reloading question and should be in the reloading section but I wanted to run a poll and did not see that option in that section so I apologize in advance. I am starting to work up a load in my new semi-custom savage 110 7mm rem mag with criterion 24 inch barrel 1:9 twist. The components will be 160 grain accubonds, IMR7828ssc, cci250s, remington brass. Because we cant do reloading at our range, I have to do load work-ups in stages. Here is where things got interesting. I went to the range to find my rifles max charge or until I hit book max (I do not like going over book max yet). I loaded up 7 charges and shot them at 100 yards with a chronograph. There was no horizontal dispersions and just a touch of vertical. Unfortunately I did not keep track of which charge created which bullet hole. So imagine a .5 inch drawn virtical line and that is what the bullet holes looked like all touching. Again, they were almost perfectly inline from left to right. I am thinking this means that at 100 yards, no matter what charge I pick, "may" lead to ragged holes (which is great!)

    I typically run OCW tests (only ran 3 to date) but all have provided me with great to decent loads for my applications. However, I do not think the OCW test at 100 yards would be of value here since, like I stated above, the groups may not very much from one charge weight to the next? So my thought is either running the OCW test at 200 yards or run a ladder at 300.

    I have heard ladders at 300 can be very unpredictable...too much opportunity for the shooter to mess things up. What do you all think I should do? My application will be finding a load that will be good to 500 yards on deer, which it looks like almost any of these loads will be well under 1 MOA and could work.

    Should I simply load several charges near max and take the best at 100/200 yards then verify at 200/300yards and call it good? Should I run 100 yard OCW, 200 yard OCW, or 300 yard ladder? Please leave comments below and I am sorry if this thread sounds dumb, just looking for ideas from you experienced shooters/reloaders.

    Note I will not be able to verify past 300 yards until next summer. I will not be shooting this rifle past 300 yards at deer until next year as well.
     

  2. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    19 views and no votes... I really am sorry guys, I know this thread may seem ridiculous but I am trying to balance budget (not wasting bullets/powder/case life) with creating a decently accurate load for 500 yard shots (maybe even further than 500 yards 2 years from now). Just trying to figure out what people would do if they could only test to 300 yards and also knowing that with my checking for pressure signs...I basically got no horizontal dispersion at 100 yards using IMR7828ssc at 60, 61, 62, 62.5, 63, 63.5 and 64 grains, which I would think indicates that no matter which powder charge I shoot I may see one ragged hole at 100 yards so doing an OCW test may be a waste at 100 yards.
     

  3. bill123

    bill123 Well-Known Member

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    According to the person who came up with OCW, Dan Newberry, OCW is best done at 100 yds.
     
  4. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    yeah thats what I figured so I think doing that test at 100 yards would not be so good if almost ever load was a single ragged hole which im thinking might happen here. I could be wrong but as I described above the only thing separating the different charge weights I tested looking for pressure signs was virtical dispersion of .5inches, there was zero horizontal dispersion.
     
  5. bill123

    bill123 Well-Known Member

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    Check out Dan's website. He recommends doing the test in .3-.5 gr increments depending on caliber.
     
  6. dkhunt14

    dkhunt14 Well-Known Member

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    I have hardly ever seen where a .3 or .5 grain load shot at 100 changes much. Most times the big bullets used are not settled. I feel 300 yards is the closest because of showing vertical. Matt
     
  7. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    im contemplating doing my first ladder...just a little hesitant due to it only being at 300 and have heard you need to have very good shooting skills or could get in to trouble with skewed results due to shooter error.
     
  8. bill123

    bill123 Well-Known Member

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    That's part of the beauty of OCW at 100. Its not about group size at first. Its about finding a string of charge weights whose groups center in a consistent place. Group size gets fixed with seating depth. According to Dan N., sub minute groups are all that is required to find the OCW. Check out the website.
     
  9. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    this I understand...but my concern is there wont be much change in point of impact either. Yesterday I loaded up 7 rounds to try and find my rifles max charge (looking for pressure signs). These were with IMR 7828ssc and were as follows 60grains, 61, 62, 62.5, 63, 63.5 and 64. ALL of these shot in almost exactly the same spot. Left and right there was NO movement. The only movement was vertical and was only .5inches. So basically it made single vertical line that was .5inches tall from the lowest hole to the highest. It was hard to even identify which load was hitting where so my fear is I may be simply wasting time and ammo running a OCW test. Im predicting I will simply get ragged holes in almost every group with very little change in point of impact at 100 yards.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2014
  10. bill123

    bill123 Well-Known Member

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    I see your point. I am by no means an expert at this but I think the idea is that if you recorded more than one shot per charge, you'd see a larger spread.
     
  11. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    Bill that may very well be the case...just dont want to load up 20 bullets, run a test that basically tells me nothing because of how well it is shooting but maybe it was just those 7 shots and coincidence they all grouped so close together.
     
  12. bill123

    bill123 Well-Known Member

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    Tough call. I started ( and stopped) reloading about 20 years ago and knew nothing about OCW or ladder testing. I just picked the charge that grouped the best and called it done. The deer didn't seem to know any better.

    I started up again about 2 years ago. Now I do all kinds of fancy testing that uses a lot of bullets but I can't say that my results are absolutely better.
     
  13. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    Haha good to know.
     
  14. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    If you have a load shooting one ragged hole it's time to stop experimenting and start loading and shooting.