what do y'all reload? i want to learn to reload rifle, pistol, and possibly shotgun,
we have a die for 38 special, and my grandpa thinks he has a die for 223.
anyway, BS away.
what do i need to start reloading? http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/gun...reloading.html
OK guys, I have gotten a few PMs about sorting bullets for precision shooting, so I figured I will just add a write up here instead of sending a bunch of PMs. Hope someone finds this useful:
In the world of mass produced bullets, No projectile (bullet) is going to be the same as the next. Even buying match grade (all I buy is SMK or Lapua Scenars, both match grade and considered among the best). Even with that though, there is always a 4-5 grain variation (sometimes more) within a box of bullets, and of course there is a HUGE variation in meplat of each bullet. There is always a variation in ogive, diameter, runout, etc.
Basically, for normal shooting none of this matters, however, when reaching out to 1500 yards, the name of the game is consistency. A 20 fps variation in muzzle velocity on a 308 will end up being about a 10” bullet drop at 1000 yards, so, in competition, or just good old fun long range, you want EVERYTHING about your round to be identical to the next to get consistent groups. So, what do I do? (and again, some will feel this is anal and overkill, so you can do as much or as little of these steps as you wish):
1. Buy in bulk, much cheaper…pickup a box of 500 175 gr SMK and perform the following:
2. Measure Bullet diameter and runout: Using a micrometer, I measure diameter (which is usually dead on) in multiple locations along the bullet and in multiple angles about the center axis. This will tell you if a bullet is out of round (egg shaped). If one is one or two tenths out of round, I demote it to a fouling shot. YES I know that in real life, the bullet is plastic when traveling through the barrel and will form to the roud barrel, BUT in my mind that will take away some energy, kick start it differently, etc. Maybe its anal, but I want to be constant.
3. Measure Bullet Bearing Surface: This measures the portion of the bullet that actually touches the rifling/barrel. Basically think of it this way, if a caliber you are shooting has a nominal bearing area of 0.25”, but when measuring you get one bullet that has a surface of 0.24” and another that has a bearing surface of 0.26”, that variation will greatly change your POI. The one that has a bearing surface of 0.26” has, obviously more contact with the barrel, therefore more resistance, which will build up higher pressure and results in higher muzzle velocity (higher POI), and likewise, the less bearing surface will result in lower POI.
There are a few ways to do this, my method is the bump gage method, as I already have bump gages to measure and determine the brass trim length for each of my actions. So, if you do not have these you need:
- (2) bump gage bodes and insert for your caliber (http://www.sinclairintl.com/reloading-equipment/measuring-tools/bullet-comparator-inserts/sinclair-insert-style-bullet-comparator-prod34014.aspx)
Basically, put the a bump gage (with appropriate insert for your caliber) on either side of your calipers (one on each blade facing each other), close them up to 0 them, then insert a bullet and measure. Then repeat for all bullets. Viola, you have your variation in bearing surface. Now sort into lots of identical bearing surfaces.
4. Trim Meplats: All Meplats were not created equally. This is VERY obvious if you simply look at the tip of your bullet. Even match grade have slight imperfections on the metplat (point of the bullet). So to fix this, pick up the following:
Using this is self explanatory, push bullet in and trim until you get a uniform tip, set the stop to that position, then run all your bullets through it. Magically ALL your bullets have identical tips. YES this will drop your BC slightly, but I’d rather have a constant slightly lower BC then a completely random BC from one shot to the next.
5. Weigh and Sort Bullet: Self-explanatory, I weight each bullet and sort by lots of .2 grain for standard shooting. If I am REALLLLLY trying to reach out and touch something, I will sort and get a lot of identical weights.
Note: Some long range shooter “point” the bullets. There is a die system that will press a keener point into a hollow point (SMK, etc) to get higher BC. This is still in the air as far as results of this. Some ppl believe its better for .224 and smaller diameters, but not as effective for larger diameter bullets. Personally I do not do it, however, if I am bored one day, I may do some tests and try it out. If anyone does test it out, let me know the results.
The end, now load them up in sorted and consitant brass, put an identical charge behind them, seat them to the correct depth for your chamber (which changes over time, so remember to remeasure once in awhile), and go have some fun. If you have questions, let me know, hope his was helpful.