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Old September 7, 2006, 10:30 PM   #1
Benonymous
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Bullet seating dilemma

Hi All.

I'm a total noob in the reloading area and I have a problem. Here's a pic of the handload I am trying to work up. It's a .308 hunting round using a Hornady SST projectile of 150 Gn weight. I have a pile of once-fired brass from my Steyr Scout and so I have used a prepped but unprimed case to seat a bullet in using the "put it in the gun-close the bolt" method.

The result is what you see here. The crimp cannelure is way above the top of the neck. I gave the seating plug a half turn down to seat the bullet in off the lands too. I have provided a Remington factory round here for comparison and the bullet ogive seems to be almost identical to the Hornady projectile.

As is, this round will fit easily in the magazine and seems to feed fine too. My questions are:
1. I can't crimp the case with the cannelure out this far. Is that a problem?
2. should I seat the bullet back so that I can crimp and just let the bullet leap the 1/8" into the rifling?
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Old September 7, 2006, 10:46 PM   #2
rwilson452
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where to seat

Unless your using a semi auto there is no great need to crimp. At this point if your get satifactory accuracy with out the crimp don't crimp. I never crimp my '06 ammo except for my M1. That point you found is just a starting point you may wish to dial in that seating depth some more. Trail and eror is the only way. some rifles wrk better at the lands and some like it back up about .03 off.
I would move back .005 at a time until you find a sweet spot. Then you tweak the powder load .5 gr at a time. then you do it all over again. you can do this forever or stop when your happy with the load.
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Old September 8, 2006, 01:03 AM   #3
Benonymous
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Thanks

Thanks for the quick reply It's good to know about crimping too. I just primed all my cases and I have a Lyman 1200 powder thrower (electronic) so off I go into the world of handload experimentation
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Old September 8, 2006, 08:59 AM   #4
rwilson452
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Powder charge Adjustments

One you have it tuned for length and charge you my want to tune using smaller steps. you should be able to find a range in powder charge that works the same. then use the mid range of that that way you don't need to be as fussy about the weight of the charge. My '06 allows for +/- .25 grains. so I have totoal of .5 gr to play with. AS you know the '06 is a bigger case than the 308 so I suspect the range will be smaller. my 22-250 is more like +/- .1 gr
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Old September 8, 2006, 09:30 AM   #5
JD 500
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It's not the least expensive way to go but...

I just loaded some of the Barnes Triple shock bullets. For some reason Barnes indicates that thier bullets (All copper) actually group better with the bullet seated to sammi spec OAL or shorter. This eliminates having to seat the bullet out close to the lands. The cartridges then function better and more reliably (Read better for hunting) at the shorter length.

I actually loaded them out towards the lands, got lousy groups, called Barnes, who said to seat them short. I loaded .300 wm to 3.340 (Sammi spec) and got awesome groups. In load development (Differrent charges) all 25 shots went into a 2x2" group @ 100 yds. Can't wait to get to the range with ammo of all the same charge.

Good luck.
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Old September 8, 2006, 03:03 PM   #6
cdoc42
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It is my understanding that the cannelure on rifle bulets is not designed to represent the spot to which the bullet should be seated. It is where it has the core locked to control expansion. Handgun bullets, different story.

I have seen Hornady change the location of the cannelure on 175gr .284 rifle bullets which I suspect was to improve bullet terminal performance. This would obviously change seating depth if one used the cannelure as a marker.

Re: Barnes, I found the ogive differed greatly in position on their bullets in the same box, same lot number. That, I gathered, explained their recommendation not to seat the bullets near the rifling because the OAL would differ, seating some unexpectedly into the rifling. If that IS the reason I don't understand why they just don't say it - explaining it as an expectation in manufacturing all copper bullets. On the other hand, if loading them away from the rifling improves accuracy, what's the point of seating close to the rifling with other bullets.......??
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Old September 8, 2006, 03:47 PM   #7
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I suspect the "put it in the gun close the bolt" method you used to determine cartridge length puts you very close to the lands, assuming you subtracted something from OAL to move the bullet away from the lands. The Remington round has to fit a wide variety of rifles, magazine sizes, chambers and throats, so the bullet is seated in farther. If this load is accurate, and is being fired from a bolt action rifle, then don't bother seating the bullet deeper and crimping into the cannelure. If you do decide to crimp your ammo, then you will have to seat deeper, but the cannelure is only there in case you need it, it's not a requirement to crimp.
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Old September 8, 2006, 07:42 PM   #8
Benonymous
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Thanks again:-)

Thanks for all of this good information It's funny the Remington round I used for comparison shoots pretty badly in my rifle. However I have some Winchester softpoint with a much straighter ogive that shoots beautifully. I think that I'll make a few in different seating lenghts for starters, as suggested, and see how it goes. I'm thinking that having this style of bullet seated further out will help in the Steyr.
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Old September 9, 2006, 01:11 AM   #9
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Load developement

There's as many different proceedures that reloaders have for load developement as there are different calibers!

That said, here's how I do it.
1. I select a bullet for the intended purpose.
2. I select a powder, I may already have it, I may select one I don't have.
3. If the load is for target use, where I can single load, then seating depth can be anywhere from touching the lands to max OAL in the manual. If the load is for hunting, mag length is what controls the max OAL for THIS load.
4. I start generally a grain or 2 over the suggested minimum, a middle load. The lowest load, the suggested minimum is usually 10% less than maximum. Seldom does the suggested minimum shoot well. So eliminating it saves components. I then pick a .5 or 1.0 grain increment to arrive at maximum, usually 5 load levels. Whether .5 or 1.0 depends on the capacity of the case, .223, I might do only one quarter grain increments. I usually load 5 rounds per increment, but in magnum calibers, or with expensive premium bullets I load 3 rounds/load.
5. As far as primers go, choose one and be satisfied with it. Switching primers means you have to start load developement over. Especially if your load is near the maximum.
6. Testing should be on a calm day with no rain. Be sure you have a firm rest and a solid bench. Targets are important, you need to be able to see the bullseye or aiming point clearly. I never test under 100 yds with a scoped rifle. it's a waste of ammo to test at 50 yards, the bullet may not be completely stabilized at 50 yds. If you get a tight group at 100 yds, then it's time to back up some. 200, 300 yds. will tell you if the 100 yd. group was a fluke!
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Old September 10, 2006, 06:10 PM   #10
30Cal
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You probably aren't going to see a lot of improvement by tweaking with seating depth--not with that bullet at least. The long VLD bullets are pretty sensitive to bullet jump and will definitely do better farther out.

I don't crimp except for revolvers and leveraction rifles.
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Old September 11, 2006, 04:42 AM   #11
arkie2
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You might give the Lee factory crimp die a look. According to Lee you can put a factory crimp on the bullet no matter where you seat it.
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Old September 11, 2006, 04:54 AM   #12
Mikke
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That's pretty much how my 150gr SST looks as well, also for a Steyr Scout. Shoots good that way.

No need for a separate crimp, I have used the Lee FC, but can't say I noticed any big difference (either positive or negative).
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Old September 21, 2006, 04:12 AM   #13
Benonymous
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Thanks Mikke. Sorry I took so long to respond to your post
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