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Old November 21, 2012, 05:00 PM   #51
old roper
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I'm member of other site read down to the post # 6 here is part of it.

I remember that in the early 90's, Mid Tompkins did some weight checking on the Palma brass that Winchester made. I believe that Bob Jensen loaded the ammo, which seem to shoot very well. I forget the precise weights, but Mid said it was the most uniform brass by weight that he had ever seen, and I think Mid knew about that sort of thing

http://www.usrifleteams.com/lrforum/...howtopic=14552 this is pretty good site get some first hand information from some team members

http://www.usrifleteams.com/

Here something on the new bullet since Sierra isn't the only bullet now

http://www.usrifleteams.com/lrforum/...howtopic=14797
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Last edited by old roper; November 21, 2012 at 06:28 PM.
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Old November 23, 2012, 10:40 AM   #52
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Old Roper, I was one of the Palma Team members that developed the load in early 1991 those Winchester cases were made for Sierra's prototype 155's they sent us to test with. We developed loads to test with cases weighing between 165 and 170 grains. I weighed about 50 random samples of the 92 PALMA ones I got from the first match that ammo was used in the summer of 1991. Weight spread was 1.5 grains; excellent by any means. Mid told me back in the early 1970's that a 1% spread in case weight's good enough. That's the only case "prep" he's ever done; no flash hole or pocket reaming. Sometimes he would turn necks if they had more than a .001" spread in wall thickness.

I bunked with Bob Jensen in South Africa in the late 1990's for their Nationals and we talked one night about those 92 PALMA headstamped cases. The Western Cartridge Company plant in Illinois had to try 3 or 4 sets of case forming dies for the coin, cup, draw, head and trim processes to make them from cartridge brass sheets. Those cases were a little better than the great WCC58 and WCC60 match cases made there for the US Olympic Free Rifle Team in those years. Having many hundreds of each and weighed some of them, they were 1.8 to 2.1 grains for spread.

In a phone chat with WCC's production engineer in 1991 about those cases, he said that someone had asked about using those old dies they still have stored away for the 92 PALMA run. But WCC denied as the WCC58's averaged 150 grains and the WCC60 156; too thin for safety in the 1990's 'cause so many people loaded ammo way too hot. Which is why the 92 PALMA ones averaged about 169 grains.

That ammo shot about 1/2 MOA at worst in several rifles from around the world in the first match it was used in; 1991 Rocky Mountain Palma Matches at the NRA range at the Whittington Center, Raton, NM. A year later at the 1992 World Palma Matches held there, top long range competitors from all over said it was the most accurate batch of ammo they had ever shot. At a dinner on night during that event with Bob, Mid and others, one conversation was about how so many folks waste lots of time measuring stuff that doesn't matter trying to get the best accuracy. Case weight spread of 1% is good enough.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 24, 2012 at 09:11 AM.
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Old November 24, 2012, 10:57 AM   #53
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Bart B, It's funny your not mention with Bob Jensen in this article

http://riflemansjournal.blogspot.com...pet-loads.html

Bart B, there is 26 member of the Palma team including coaches
here is picture of 1995 team
http://www.palma.org/rifle-teams/f-c...team/1995-team
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Last edited by old roper; November 24, 2012 at 11:39 AM.
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Old November 24, 2012, 01:24 PM   #54
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I have weighed a LOT of 223 brass and NEVER found even half that much variation. I would call the brass you weighed as very unusual

I weigh all my 223 brass. I can give you hundreds of cases that are over 107 gns.
Normal 223 Rem brass that is deprimed comes in around 71 to 75 gns.
I keep all brass in that range and sell the rest.
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Old November 24, 2012, 02:01 PM   #55
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Bart B, this is clip I'm sure you seen before

The United States would not just sit around licking its wounds. The 1992 Palma Match would be contested in the United States. The National Rifle Association's 33,000 acre Whittington Center is the most recent of four recent sites in the United States that have hosted the Palma. It may possibly become the permanent home of the match in the United States. The new ranges were in the best of shape, the Sturm Ruger Arms Company manufactured special rifles for the home team, and team officials were working hard to ensure that the home team would win the maiden match on the home court. Fifteen nations would participate in this match with the nations from Africa and Europe forming composite teams.

While the traditional Palma format would be followed in the team event a dozen fired individual matches and aggregates comprising the World Long Range Individual Rifle Championship, would be added to the program. Shooting two of the Rugers and an assortment of Winchester Model 70s and Remington 700s and 40Xs the United States got off to a fine start in the individual matches. However, when the team match began the British took firm control. Perhaps smarting from the loss on home turf in 1985, they were determined to win. After the first stage it was obvious that the British were the team to beat. In the end, wielding rifles built around Paramount actions and Border barrels they won in a walk with a 59 point margin over the second place Canadians. New Zealand again found itself in third place. The United States ended up a disappointing fifth behind the Australians.

In part, the failure of the United States to do well was our different style of shooting and method of team selection. The other national teams fire a good deal more long range team matches together as a team than does the United States. Only time will tell if the extensive re-tooling will work, but the team leadership is to be congratulated for its efforts to remake the Unites States Palma Team into a serious threat in the future.

Just goes to show ammo isn't the most important part of winning.
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Old November 24, 2012, 03:56 PM   #56
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old roper,

Great Britain has come in #1 or #2 in the Palma matches every match since 1985. In that same time frame the US has come in #1 once, #2 twice, and 3rd place once. The US failed to make top three at 4 different Palma matches where the Brits have never settled for third place or lower.

Of course the Brits were shooting ball ammo in 1992, but Radway Green always put aside the first lot after new dies are installed for "sniper" and "match" lots.

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Old November 24, 2012, 04:11 PM   #57
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Jimro, all the teams shooting the Palma matches in 1992 at the Whittington Center used that ammo headstamped PALMA 92 that I referred to in post 52 in this thread. That's the rule in international Palma matches; everyone shoots the same ammo issued by the host country's team. Bob Jensen and his two sons use a pair of Dillon 1050 progressives to load many thousands of rounds of that stuff. I helped cart those 500-round boxes of it from the van to the ammo issue table.

For most of the regular fullbore long range matches in Great Britian, they do use ammo from Radway Green Arsenal. They ain't allowed to use handloads.

One interesting thing about ammo was the 1997 South Africa Nationals and 1999 World Palma Matches in South Africa. The US government did not allow ammunition nor components to be shipped to South Africa. So the South African Bisley Union (Their version of our NRA) arranged for a company in Canada to buy thousands of Sierra's 155-gr. Palma bullets then ship them to South Africa. I was there in 1997 and the Africaaners I knew from being there the year before told me they were very pleased to get bullets a lot better than the best their own arsenal made. Their arsenal ammo loaded with Sierra's shot as accurate as anything made in the USA.

Old Roper, those Rugers were the worst example of factory made match rifles the US Palma Team's ever seen. Horrible trigger, poor stock design without proper cheek support for the sights and rough barrels made by a Vermont company who makes only black powder and rimfire barrels. Nobody at Ruger knew anything about a Palma rifle, what it had to be able to do and well as being easy to shoot accurately from prone. They went to their regualar barrel supplier. Half of them had 4 grooves the other half had 6. The 4 groove ones shot a bit better, but 15 out of the 16 proved in accuracy tests to be wash tub guns; that's the size of the groups they shot at 1000 yards. One person on the US Team used the best one (least worse?) because his own rifle broke and nobody else had a spare for him. I gave my rifle to another team member 'cause his broke a firing pin. Everyone else used their own rifles that shot that ammo very well as tested.

And for the rest of the readers, note the US Palma Team last year didn't do so well as the head coach did not want each of the four line coaches doping wind for their four shooters. He tried to dope it for all four firing points and he couldn't see the conditions for each one from his position. He caught the dickens from the line coaches after the match was over.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 26, 2012 at 06:44 AM.
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Old November 24, 2012, 05:28 PM   #58
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Bart B. From what I read they didn't get to test those Ruger rifles at the factory but they are worth money.

http://www.lprgunsmith.com/target_rifles.asp
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Old November 24, 2012, 05:51 PM   #59
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Roper, Ruger chose not to test them except for a couple of proof loads to ensure their safety.

I see them listed for 4000 to 8000 dollars but don't know if any sold for that price. At that match, a bunch of us discussed their post-92Palma value and we all agreed they would fetch a lot from some folks but we placed their real value at about $800; the sights were worth half that much alone.

Remington also offered the US Palma Team 20 rifles in late 1991 on their short 40X action with .308 Win. barrels, but they were refused by the Team Management.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 24, 2012 at 09:16 PM.
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Old November 24, 2012, 09:58 PM   #60
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Bart B, I only know what I read vs what your talking about on those Ruger rifles.

I surprised you didn't mention that ammo made by Bob Jensen for 1992 Palma was thru one of his company's called Jensen's Custom Ammunition. Has to be legal
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Old November 25, 2012, 05:29 AM   #61
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Quote:
For most of the regular fullbore long range matches in Great Britian, they do use ammo from Radway Green Arsenal. They ain't allowed to use handloads.
The arrangement under which Radway Green (RG) ammunition was supplied to the GB NRA came to an end in 2008 and since then ammunition for GB NRA competition (for Palma-style matches) has been supplied under a commercial contract with RWS. Their product uses the Sierra 2155, the rest of the components being their own. The result has been a step change in performance, but also in cost. Most of the club team match circuit has also switched from RG to commercial products, usually from smaller domestic producers, and handloads are increasingly being accepted in club open/individual competitions. The RWS contract ends soon, possibly after 2013, so we could see a change of supplier (or rules) after that time.

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Old November 25, 2012, 08:23 AM   #62
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Rox, thanks for confirming what I've heard about the Brits using ammo from an other supplier.

When at international matches and talking with the Brits and others from the Commonwealth countries, they've pretty much all envied us Yanks for being allowed to shoot handloads. Lots of folks don't quite understand why that is.

It all began about a century ago when the Brits running their shooting games felt that the best way to find out who was the best shot was to level the playing field such that only humans were the variable. To that end, they insisted and made rules that everyone had to use the same rifle and ammo. Well, it's rediculous that only one .303 SMLE rifle was on the range and 200 people had to shoot it with the same lot of ammo to see who was the best shot. So the rule put in the books said all the rifles had to be the same make and model and shoot the same ammo. Didn't matter that the minute variables in bore and chamber dimensions as well as parts fit would make a few rifles very accurate, some just average and the rest would best serve as fence posts. When folks from the USA Palma Teams went to the rifle issue place at international matches to draw their rifles, thoughts of "I think the locals tested these and picked the best ones for them and left the less accurate ones for the rest of us." prevailed. Sometimes, that's the way it was. It was not that way when a couple hundred Winchester 70 Palma rifles or M14NM's were issued for International Palma matches at Camp Perry decades ago.

Regarding the ammo, the Brits back then also felt that if handloads were allowed, or commercial ammo could be used, only those who could afford to do that and did it best would have an unfair advantage over some poor bloke who held, aimed and fired rifles more consistantly than anyone else but couldn't afford time and costs to make or buy his own ammo.

But the rules have been for several years such that a lot of ammo made for the upcomming world championships would have samples sent to other participating countries so they could make barrels that shot it well before the competition. Sometimes a country would do sneaky things to win. Example; 1988 World Championships in Sydney, Australia. The ammo they sent to the USA Palma Team in 1987 was very good; it shot no worse than about 1 MOA at 1000 when we tested it. When we got to the ANZAC range in Sydney April, 1988, our practice day on the range told us something. The ammo issued had different headstamps than what we were issued in 1987. It was loaded hotter than what we got earlier. None of our 16 rifles shot it well; a few would hold about 15 inches with it, mine barely 20. The Australians won. . .handily. My daughter in law's father was a doctor (psychiatrist or psychologist) working in Sydney at the time and my wife and I visited him while there. We told him about that and he said that was typical of most Aussie governing bodies for so many of their sports disciplines; especially their America's Cup Yacht racing team.

That mind set on ammo still prevailed in the early 1990's when the International Palma Committee (comprised mostly of British Commonwealth folks) changed the rules that Sierra's 155-gr. Palma bullet would be "the" bullet for world championships. And many countries, Commonwealth or not, also named it for use in their own matches. There's still several rules and restrictions on sights; some do not allow spirit levels on front sights. And trigger pull weight has to be 3.5 pounds (1.5 kilograms) based on the old British rule stemming from "no light pull triggers are reliable and safe" mindset.

I think the Brits and their Commonwealth siblings as well as other countries have finally realized that the best marksmen handload ammo good enough that it's not a factor. More and more handloads are now being allowed. One of these days, the world's governing bodies may let folks use any bullet they want; caliber, weight, case or whatever; just go shoot a rifle and ammo of their choice and see who does best.

Last edited by Bart B.; November 25, 2012 at 08:28 AM.
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Old November 25, 2012, 11:45 AM   #63
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Rox, I've never shot Palma but I do read and granted reloads may be better than the issue ammo and getting liability insurance is a concern. You may not agree with using Sierra 155gr bullet but it did standardize issue ammo for host countries. reloads may be OK on local level but traveling they do present some problems or trying to buy supplies in host country.
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Old November 25, 2012, 02:16 PM   #64
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Quote:
You may not agree with using Sierra 155gr bullet
I'm perfectly happy with Sierra 155's - I load them and shoot them in their thousands. As long as they are what we use in National an International competitions, that is what I train with. It helps that they are cheap (well, relative to most of the alternatives).
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Old November 25, 2012, 04:32 PM   #65
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old roper, bringing stuff to handload ammo's exactly what happened to the USA Goodwill Team in South Africa at their Nationals in 1997. Most of us brought bullet seaters, powder measures and scales, primed and sized cases and Berger's new 155 grain Palma bullet that seemed to test well for accuracy. But we had to buy South African powder; 'twas probably supplied by Musgrave Manufacturers and Distributors (Pty) Ltd in Bloemfontein near the Gen. DeWet rifle range where we shot at. It was about the same speed as IMR4895 or Varget, small extruded kernels that metered very accurate. One guy on the USA team (Tom Whittaker) lost a challenge on a scored miss at 900 meters that cost him the SA National Championship that year.
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