An old military training phrase for marksmanship was/is called "ball and dummy." It involves mixing dummy rounds with live ones. Used to train folks to call their shots, squeeze that 4.5 pound trigger properly and not move at all after firing until after you and the rifle's stopped moving from recoil. That means keep your trigger finger pulled back against its stop until you've stopped moving. Don't flick your trigger finger forward the instant you subconciously feel the sear break and release the hammer or firing pin.
I once had this happen to me in a 1000 yard match when I was using handloads with Sierra 190's supplied by the marksmanship unit. Probably the most accurate long range loads ever used in 7.62 NATO Garands. But it was not for training; it was for real that time in 1970.
First sighter, called a deep V at 3 o'clock. V ring was 20 inches in diameter. Target went down then came up with the spotter at 1 o'clock in the 36 inch 5 ring. Came down 1 MOA in elevation. Loaded my next sighter round.
Second sigher, called center. Target came up with a shallow V at 9 o'clock. Came one click (1/2 minute) right. Loaded my first record shot. Then made a 1 MOA change for the wind. The wind was a bit shifty and needed constant vigilance.
First record shot. Rifle went click. Round didn't fire. But I called it a V at 6 o'clock. Ejected the round, bulet was still intact, looked at my scorekeeper who just shrugged his shoulders. Loaded another round.
First record shot, second try. That one fired and was called a V at 4 o'clock. Target came up with a V at 3. No change.
To make a long story short, I had to load 42 rounds to get 20 that fired for record shots. Ended up with a 98-17V score on that old military C target and won the service rifle division placing 3rd overall against the magnum bolt guns. Lost two points from missing wind changes while on the gun aiming.
Weighed the rounds that went click; all were about 44 grains lighter than some of the others I had from that batch. The charge of IMR4320 was 44 grains. No wonder there was no powder in them as noted after I pulled their bullets. I still think the man in the unit's loading room was in cahouts with the other team members to pull a fast one on me.
Last edited by Bart B.; November 23, 2012 at 07:17 PM.