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wayoutwest
02-02-2007, 10:05 PM
Well I went to the range this morning with my first batch of handloads for 308 Rem. 700pss

Rem. Brass (1x fired, FL sized (Lee)
Varget 43.0 grains (Lee Safety Scale)
Sierra 175 BTHP
Federal Primers
2.80 OAL
No Chrono

100 yds, slight wind, 45 degrees

I warmed up with Black Hills Match 168s and they went where I wanted them to go(not great but good). The very first handload, chambered good, fired, dead on (big smile). The second one, I couldn’t close the bolt, the third couldn’t close, 4th a tight fit but could close, low and outside, same for the fifth. Fifteen rounds in total fired, 5 went where they were supposed to, 10 were way off (2"-3") and 5 I couldn’t close the bolt on (no smile).

SO any ideas on why the bolt will close on some, tight on others and won’t close on some. Did the FL sizing really not size it correctly? Now I am not a great shot but a lot of these looked like the first cold bore shot. Maybe go a little bit higher on the charge? Maybe try just necksizeing the fire-formed brass and try again?

Any input is appreciated other than just give up and buy ammo.

thanks

thmpr
02-02-2007, 10:12 PM
Sounds like your head spacing on your sizing die is set incorrectly. It is not fully sizing the case far enough since engaging the bolt is tight. Do you have a case gauge handy to check the headspace?

moredes
02-02-2007, 11:10 PM
Agreed. It won't close because the headspacing is inconsistent.

I'll assume it's a .308 we're talking about (I don't follow 30-06, so I dunno if 168's and 75's are used there). Dunno what you expected for accuracy out of a bone stock Rem700. You don't say when it was made, but I'm not so sure that makes much difference. Remington has a pretty inconsistent reputation for their recent specimens (last 20 years, as I hear it). That said, y'oughta be able to get 2MOA with factory loads like BH, I would think.

How accurate was your seating depth? Were you using a competition seating die that'd allow you to set the bullet depth with precision, or are you using a regular seating component of a 2-die set? (We're getting pretty fussy here now.) Have you measured your rifle for the ideal OAL setting? What're you using to measure? Stoney Point is probably acknowledged as the most accurate and easiest tool to work with within monetary 'reason'.

As for your load, I've not heard anything good about Remington brass; that's not to say it's bad--I've just never heard anything good. Most guys shooting for groups tout Lake City brass, Lapua, Winchester, Black Hills, and sometimes even Federal (though a lot of folks dislike them for their inherent softness). As to powder and primers, each rifle is different. Varget is a favorite, but both my 700's really do poorly on it. They both like IMR 4064 or RL-15 better. Are your primers GM 210M, or just the usual 210s ? The Match primers *are* manu'd to better tolerances. I swear the PSS only comes in one barrel twist-- a 1/12, which common wisdom claims is more suited to 175+ than 168s especially at long range 300yd+.

175's and 168's ain't gonna hit the same spot even when you shoot them at the same target distance. What did you mean when you said the first was 'dead on'? If it hit where the 68's did, it's prolly more fluke than design. I dunno if you mean you got a 2-3" group spread with the '75s, or the 175s grouped 2-3" away from the 168s holes.

How long did you wait between shots? Theory (especially when shooting for group size) says that one should allow the barrel to cool at least a minute between shots. A minute's a long time to wait when that's all you're doing. However, if you don't, by the end of a 5-shot string, the barrel can be pretty hot, and after a quick 15-shot string (say, ~4 minutes for the entire string--~15 seconds per shot) the barrel could be too hot to touch (which violates the cardinal rule of barrel treatment, except in competitions). Under those conditions the barrel will walk and throw the pills everywhere.

50BMGBOB
02-02-2007, 11:14 PM
If it was once fired in a different gun,aka a military (belt fed) you may need a small base sizer.

wayoutwest
02-03-2007, 12:00 AM
oops

wayoutwest
02-03-2007, 12:00 AM
Sounds like your head spacing on your sizing die is set incorrectly. It is not fully sizing the case far enough since engaging the bolt is tight. Do you have a case gauge handy to check the headspace?

My noobie guess is that its not sizing the base of the case. I have a case gauge on my list for my next Midway order.

moredes

Agreed. It won't close because the headspacing is inconsistent.

I'll assume it's a .308 we're talking about (I don't follow 30-06, so I dunno if 168's and 75's are used there). Dunno what you expected for accuracy out of a bone stock Rem700. You don't say when it was made, but I'm not so sure that makes much difference. Remington has a pretty inconsistent reputation for their recent specimens (last 20 years, as I hear it). That said, y'oughta be able to get 2MOA with factory loads like BH, I would think.

How accurate was your seating depth? Were you using a competition seating die that'd allow you to set the bullet depth with precision, or are you using a regular seating component of a 2-die set? (We're getting pretty fussy here now.) Have you measured your rifle for the ideal OAL setting? What're you using to measure? Stoney Point is probably acknowledged as the most accurate and easiest tool to work with within monetary 'reason'.

As for your load, I've not heard anything good about Remington brass; that's not to say it's bad--I've just never heard anything good. Most guys shooting for groups tout Lake City brass, Lapua, Winchester, Black Hills, and sometimes even Federal (though a lot of folks dislike them for their inherent softness). As to powder and primers, each rifle is different. Varget is a favorite, but both my 700's really do poorly on it. They both like IMR 4064 or RL-15 better. Are your primers GM 210M, or just the usual 210s ? The Match primers *are* manu'd to better tolerances. I swear the PSS only comes in one barrel twist-- a 1/12, which common wisdom claims is more suited to 175+ than 168s especially at long range 300yd+.

175's and 168's ain't gonna hit the same spot even when you shoot them at the same target distance. What did you mean when you said the first was 'dead on'? If it hit where the 68's did, it's prolly more fluke than design. I dunno if you mean you got a 2-3" group spread with the '75s, or the 175s grouped 2-3" away from the 168s holes.

How long did you wait between shots? Theory (especially when shooting for group size) says that one should allow the barrel to cool at least a minute between shots. A minute's a long time to wait when that's all you're doing. However, if you don't, by the end of a 5-shot string, the barrel can be pretty hot, and after a quick 15-shot string (say, ~4 minutes for the entire string--~15 seconds per shot) the barrel could be too hot to touch (which violates the cardinal rule of barrel treatment, except in competitions). Under those conditions the barrel will walk and throw the pills everywhere.

Moredes, some of the stuff above is greek to me. I set the OAL based on the BH match 168 lenght with the standard seating die from Lee. As for primers they are the regular 210. When I switched to the 175s it was with a new target and the first shot hit the 1" shoot and see (POA-POI) (luck) the follow up shots grouped 2"-3" around it. It was not one long fast string but 3 slow 5 shot over about 20-25 minutes or so. The barrel may have got warm, positive it never got hot.

Thanks for the insight so far.

dw1784
02-03-2007, 12:18 AM
turn the dies another 1/4 to 1/3 turns. Get a stoney point like others suggests.
http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=45072

though there's been lot of talk about recent quality issues, PSS is one of the most accurate rifles out of the box. My pss will often print <1MOA on my best days. Then again, I might've lucked out as I've never had to adjust the trigger, get a new stock or need a new barrel like a lot of people ask on forums. It's more rifle than I am. You do need to try different loads though. For example, my pss seems to like 46gr of Varget with 155gr Amax Palmas, while my friend's light tactical pss(20" barrel) likes 42gr 4895. Good luck and have fun:)

tankerman
02-03-2007, 7:05 AM
The cases may need to be trimmed, was this used brass that you purchased? Full legth resize or neck resize. If you just resized the neck then the shoulder could be to far forward asuuming that this brass was fired in a different gun. Or were up messing with the seater die reapeatedly? Did you check the overall length to see if they were uniform? then measure from the base to the shoulder and the length of the neck compare several cases

moredes
02-03-2007, 7:13 AM
Bigtime brain fart on my part. OAL isn't really that "critical" with an OEM Rem700 unless they're barreling the actions with much more attention to machine tolerances than they've done in the past. The reason they're assembled with such a "long built-in OAL" is because of liability; they don't want the average reloader to be able to increase pressures by inadvertantly increasing the cartridge's OAL to the point of the actual bullet's ability to touch the lands and grooves (aka, 'throat').

Correctly assembled, there isn't a factory round available that comes close to crowding the throat by having an overly long OAL. Almost any one of the OEM bullet makers will do as a sampler for measuring OAL, and Black Hills is fine. Factory is certainly not the best OAL; you'll need to measure accurately (with something akin to a Stoney Point), but even at that, The OEM dimension will really stretch that cartridge length if one wants to set right off the throat for accuracy. So my previous point about measuring OAL isn't that valid. If you based your reloading OAL on Black Hills dimensions, that's good enough for ballpark.

If it took you 20-25 minutes to set off three 5-shot strings, you're right, the barrel never got hot enough to 'walk'. (and the general rule of thumb for 'accuracy' is, if you can't hold the barrel bare-handed, it's too hot to shoot--on a hot day in the sun, firing the 3rd round in a span of three minutes can make the barrel too hot for shooting best groups)

What kind of groups did you get firing the Black Hills stuff? How much experience do you have shooting rifles for accuracy? Do you know what "natural point of aim" means? is the rifle set up with a bipod, or did you use bags? Did you use a bag to support the butt, or was it hand-held? Were you using a scope, and if so, how was the parallax?

Lastly, my best ammo-related recommendation is that you should try different powder/primer combinations. 2-3" groups ain't very good; and if another shooter confirms that the lack of accuracy is inherent in the rifle (or the Black Hills is giving you groups under say, 1 1/2" at 100yd), I'd say the "fault" is in the ammo and/or your shooting technique. 175 SMK's may not be the best round to proof your gun at 100yd. There's a big camp that believes that 175's can't be as accurate as 168's in close (~first 300yd), and I'm a believer. There's a lot of theory surrounding the results that the majority (I mean like 51+%, not 99) of shooters get better groups with 175's farther out than in close. In any case, under 300yd, I'd use 168's for accuracy, even out of a 1/12 barrel.

Help me out here, guys.... I'm not up on my Rem700s anymore--what's the expected standard accuracy for an OEM 700 now?

Tankerman makes a good point. This is brass that meets SAAMI specs, yes? If not, you should trim the cases. I'd suggest you go with a Full Length resizing die for the initial firings only because you're having problems, but after that, a neck-sizing die (only) built for that gun would be a nice luxury.

MisterDudeManGuy
02-03-2007, 7:57 AM
For accuracy, "exactly the same" is the word. Trim cases, weigh them, weigh charges, use high quality primers, find a charge that fills the case, use a cartridge gauge to make sure the shoulder is where it ought to be, and use a gauge to measure dead length. If you are off the lands, then a crimp isn't a bad idea - especially if your rifle is throated long. Personally, I don't shoot anything that can't be made to seat in the lands. Not for accuracy, anyway.

OAL measurements are almost meaningless, but are really meaningless between different bullets with different ogives. Dead length is the measurement to get. That's the length between the case base and the contact point to the lands on the bullet ogive. A stoney point will do it.

Wait until you get your cartridge gauge before doing anything else. The only way to know if it's right is to measure it. Just turning the die in 'more' really doesn't do it. Even if turning the die gets the cartridges within SAAMI, you'll not know what you've done - nor how to replicate it if it works well. Nothing worse than getting a great load, and then not being able to make it again.

On short line, I shoot 150gr spitzers. My opinion is that boat tails take time to stabilize. That time can be increased by getting enough wrong in load development. I shoot for group size at 200. Hope some of this helps.

tankerman
02-03-2007, 8:20 AM
For accuracy, "exactly the same" is the word. Trim cases, weigh them, weigh charges, use high quality primers, find a charge that fills the case, use a cartridge gauge to make sure the shoulder is where it ought to be, and use a gauge to measure dead length. If you are off the lands, then a crimp isn't a bad idea - especially if your rifle is throated long. Personally, I don't shoot anything that can't be made to seat in the lands. Not for accuracy, anyway.

OAL measurements are almost meaningless, but are really meaningless between different bullets with different ogives. Dead length is the measurement to get. That's the length between the case base and the contact point to the lands on the bullet ogive. A stoney point will do it.

Wait until you get your cartridge gauge before doing anything else. The only way to know if it's right is to measure it. Just turning the die in 'more' really doesn't do it. Even if turning the die gets the cartridges within SAAMI, you'll not know what you've done - nor how to replicate it if it works well. Nothing worse than getting a great load, and then not being able to make it again.

On short line, I shoot 150gr spitzers. My opinion is that boat tails take time to stabilize. That time can be increased by getting enough wrong in load development. I shoot for group size at 200. Hope some of this helps.

OAL is not meaningless if the cases need to be trimmed and the shoulder is moved forward, or if he is seating the bullet out to far it could be contacting L and G's. I bet on the shoulder being to far forward, specially if they were not completely resized

Fjold
02-03-2007, 8:51 AM
If your sizing die is adjusted correctly (check the directions that came with your dies) then make sure before you size the cases that you have some lube inside the neck. Alot of times people will lube the outside of the cases but not the inside of the neck, this causes the expander ball to drag on the neck as it is pulled out and pull the neck and shoulder forward making the headspace to tight.

C.G.
02-03-2007, 8:51 AM
damn

You can delete these posts.

moredes
02-03-2007, 4:42 PM
Thanks, CG. I missed that. duh :rolleyes:

I bet your right about the shoulder being to far forward, Tankerman. But if he's right, and his OAL is copied from BH ammo, I wouldn't guess he's on the Ls and Gs.

anotherted
02-03-2007, 5:12 PM
NM, Fjold beat me to it.

I had the same problem. lube the inside of the case neck for sure.

Gunsrruss
02-03-2007, 7:28 PM
Well I went to the range this morning with my first batch of handloads for 308 Rem. 700pss

Rem. Brass (1x fired, FL sized (Lee)
Varget 43.0 grains (Lee Safety Scale)
Sierra 175 BTHP
Federal Primers
2.80 OAL
No Chrono

100 yds, slight wind, 45 degrees

I warmed up with Black Hills Match 168s and they went where I wanted them to go(not great but good). The very first handload, chambered good, fired, dead on (big smile). The second one, I couldn’t close the bolt, the third couldn’t close, 4th a tight fit but could close, low and outside, same for the fifth. Fifteen rounds in total fired, 5 went where they were supposed to, 10 were way off (2"-3") and 5 I couldn’t close the bolt on (no smile).

SO any ideas on why the bolt will close on some, tight on others and won’t close on some. Did the FL sizing really not size it correctly? Now I am not a great shot but a lot of these looked like the first cold bore shot. Maybe go a little bit higher on the charge? Maybe try just necksizeing the fire-formed brass and try again?

Any input is appreciated other than just give up and buy ammo.

thanks

First off, I used .308 reloads to on my 700PSS. My rounds were touching each other at 200yds. Needless to say I was pleased.
You will need a small base die, mine is from RCBS. Put the shell plate full up then run the die down to it. once the die contacts the plate give it a half turn forcing down the plate. This should give you a good sizing. I once had the same problem you are having. Try running 168 to 175 through the PSS. you will get better results. 175 prefered. Agood load for them is 41.5-42.0grains of 4895. My OAL is 2.780. Good luck, you picked the right gun. Now make it work for you. I would pull down all you have loaded and start again. Make sure your getting the right amount of grains, don't assume. Cheap is expensive and expensive is cheap I found this out the hard way. Try Pact powderdispenser and matching scale 229.00 and RCBS 3-way cutters for your triming. Saves a load of time and your loads will be right on. PM me if you want to talk on the phone. I have already paid the price,
Russ

wayoutwest
02-03-2007, 10:18 PM
Gentlemen, thanks for taking the time to respond to my post. I went out today and picked up a RCBS bullet puller, IMR 4064, CCI BR2 primers, and a box of Sierra 168 SMK. Just to try a couple other options.

I plan on adjusting the FL sizing die and resizing some of the Rem Brass I already have sized and trying to chamber them in the PSS. I also plan on trying to use the BH brass that was new and I fired and NS it, make a couple different combos of powder/bullets while I wait for my Midway order to arrive.

thanks again

MisterDudeManGuy
02-04-2007, 11:57 AM
OAL is not meaningless if the cases need to be trimmed and the shoulder is moved forward, or if he is seating the bullet out to far it could be contacting L and G's. I bet on the shoulder being to far forward, specially if they were not completely resized

IF the cases need to be trimmed? I trim always, to my preset length after sizing. That's the only way to know what the length is - is by setting the brass to a standard every single time. Sure, a person can measure and only trim the ones that need it, but it is so quick to do a trim that there's no point in not trimming every time. It's faster then measuring and selective trimming. If they don't get shorter in the trim, they were to spec since the trimmer is the gauge...

OAL is meaningful for magazine length issues. A cartridge headspace gauge, as sold by L.E. Wilson, will show up all sizing/neck length issues and headspace issues. Not hitting the shoulder in sizing - the gauge will show it. Anything short of measuring cartridge headspace and dead length is just guessing. Which is ok if blasting is the goal. Accuracy demands sameness. Repeatability requires measurement and control over the parameters.

C.G.
02-04-2007, 2:13 PM
Accuracy demands sameness. Repeatability requires measurement and control over the parameters.

This why this article caught my eye:
http://www.snipershide.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=13;t=005489

tankerman
02-04-2007, 2:59 PM
IF the cases need to be trimmed? I trim always, to my preset length after sizing. That's the only way to know what the length is - is by setting the brass to a standard every single time. Sure, a person can measure and only trim the ones that need it, but it is so quick to do a trim that there's no point in not trimming every time. It's faster then measuring and selective trimming. If they don't get shorter in the trim, they were to spec since the trimmer is the gauge...


OAL is meaningful for magazine length issues. A cartridge headspace gauge, as sold by L.E. Wilson, will show up all sizing/neck length issues and headspace issues. Not hitting the shoulder in sizing - the gauge will show it. Anything short of measuring cartridge headspace and dead length is just guessing. Which is ok if blasting is the goal. Accuracy demands sameness. Repeatability requires measurement and control over the parameters.
I do not always trim my cases. Depends on the use and I definitely do not trim straight walled cases often.
Chamber casting will show ALL issues.

MisterDudeManGuy
02-04-2007, 4:13 PM
This why this article caught my eye:
http://www.snipershide.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=13;t=005489

When the standard is low enough, even charges don't need to be weighed. If you want 5 through the same hole at 200, 3/4 MOA simply won't cut it. Not my opinion - just the way the math works out.

I think the point is to find out what factors are material to your situation and concentrate on them. My statements are not meant to say what is better - we all do what we do because we want to do it.

Case prep and loading are something that can be approached scientifically. By choosing to measure, I choose to know. By measuring my results, I can choose what to change because I control all factors that I can. Does that make what I do better? No. But it works well for me. When I get fliers after a load has worked for me over a whole season, I know what to examine to see what the cause was. If I did not measure and control factors, I would be left to guess.

Accuracy requires sameness is an independently true statement - it is not merely my opinion. It is factual that putting bullets downrange through the same hole requires sameness - because the hole has to be in the same location. What has to be done to get it there depends upon the requirement of the shooter.

tankerman
02-04-2007, 5:11 PM
I don't think anyone is debating the requirements of for ultimate accuracy. For me thats not always the goal.

C.G.
02-04-2007, 5:40 PM
When the standard is low enough, even charges don't need to be weighed. If you want 5 through the same hole at 200, 3/4 MOA simply won't cut it. Not my opinion - just the way the math works out.

I think the point is to find out what factors are material to your situation and concentrate on them. My statements are not meant to say what is better - we all do what we do because we want to do it.

Case prep and loading are something that can be approached scientifically. By choosing to measure, I choose to know. By measuring my results, I can choose what to change because I control all factors that I can. Does that make what I do better? No. But it works well for me. When I get fliers after a load has worked for me over a whole season, I know what to examine to see what the cause was. If I did not measure and control factors, I would be left to guess.

Accuracy requires sameness is an independently true statement - it is not merely my opinion. It is factual that putting bullets downrange through the same hole requires sameness - because the hole has to be in the same location. What has to be done to get it there depends upon the requirement of the shooter.

I am not disagreeing with you, I just found it curious that he was able to do as well as he did without the regimentation.

MisterDudeManGuy
02-04-2007, 7:03 PM
I am not disagreeing with you, I just found it curious that he was able to do as well as he did without the regimentation.

The article was pretty good. I do about that well when I make blaster ammo. I do my .30-30 like that. With the big fat bead sight on that thing, I can't even see anything past 100yds. In that case, all I am worried about accuracy-wise is something like half-minute-of-boar's-brisket... :D

tankerman
02-04-2007, 7:20 PM
Many a oldtimer scooped surplus 4831 using a 30 06 case, poured a little out of the neck and seated the bullet.