The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Hide > The Art of the Rifle: General

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old October 28, 2012, 11:22 AM   #1
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
Rem 700 sps varmint accuracy

I'm new to the whole forum thing... bear with me please.
I have a Rem 700 SPS Varmint. 1 yr old. Apprx 300 rnds run down it. Cleaned A LOT (NO BRASS BRUSH THO). Bedded action factory stock... looking to upgrade when funds permit.
SCOPE: Nikon 3-9 x 40 (the price was right)
TWIST/LENGTH: 1:12 / 24"
Handloads: Factory(from Meijers)brass fire formed of course. Remington #200 primers, 44gr IMR4895 charge with a 168gr Hornady HPBT. OAL 2.8

So...Why is my accuracy so sketchy? Its not horrible, but I'd like to at least achieve what I shot with the Meijers purchased Remington 150gr spitzers. Shot a MOA .75 @ 100 yrds one time. THRILLED!... Never happened since. I'm at 1.25 on a good day. Thats #1

Next: When I clean the bore, I use a copper remover (essentially Amonia+dish soap) until it comes out clean. Go back thru with Ed's Red and get the crap out and clean. Dry patches a couple times... Run a quick very lightly oiled (Hoppe's) patch to... well ya know? It just seems right being a machinist and all for preservation of surface.
The darn thing doesn't want to come clean! I stopped cause I thought maybe something was wrong. I basically get a dirty(looks like black dirt)patch. Not much, but I want to have a WHITE patch after I clean... Am I asking too much?
I'll stop here... I have a strong want for accuracy.

I don't expect miracles. .5 MOA would be cause for celebration! Just want consistancy. So whatcha got for me? I can take it.
douggamm is offline  
Old October 28, 2012, 03:20 PM   #2
cw308
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 2010
Location: Long Island NY
Posts: 446
Sounds like 308 Cal. If so, I have a Rem.700 LTR 20" barrel 308 cal. Have been reloading for years for this rifle. Your Varmint is the same action, longer barrel 26" I thought .Anyway your rifle is a tack driver, just have to find the right combo for it. Remingtons have alot of free bore,so if shooting one shot at a time you can try bringing the bullet closer to the lands.tried it at first,didn't do much. Found staying with OAL 2.800 worked best & trying different powers, working up a load till I found a combo that worked.Takes time. My rifle did not shoot well with Varget. Found IMR 4064 42.0 Gr with Sierra 168gr.HPBT & 150gr. HPBT shot great. This year I shot A one hole 3 shot group dead center in the bulls eye, didn't want to shoot another shot to screw it up, I saved the target. I wish I could shoot that way all the time,but that is the fun of it.I wouldn't go any heavier than 168 gr. bullet with 1-12 twist. I'm now trying partial neck sizing,works good so far. Found it on Youtube, the computer is a great source for info. Also check your Mount,rings & action screws if they loosen they will drive you crazy till you realize the problem.Hope I Helped.Be Safe Chris
cw308 is offline  
Old October 28, 2012, 03:42 PM   #3
golfnutrlv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 5, 2008
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 1,347
Well, there are a couple things you can do. First, it's ok to clean your rifle every trip don't get me wrong, but my 700 shoots better with a fouled bore. Think of it, you zero with a fouled bore, test handloads with a fouled bore, why would you hunt or compete with a clean bore?

My 2 cents.

If you handload, try some different powder charges, see if accuracy gets better. If you feel like trying a different powder, make it varget. I've never used anything else for 308.

Also, load your rounds a little longer, just off the lands. I load my .308 to 2.9 inches. Works in my gun. This will not fit in a mag, but great for target or competition.
__________________
ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ
VIGILIA PRETIUM LIBERTATIS
"The price of liberty is vigilance"
America is at an awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards.
golfnutrlv is offline  
Old October 28, 2012, 03:47 PM   #4
kraigwy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 16, 2008
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 9,444
I'd back off the power a bit. 4895 is great for 308s but I don't think you need 44 grns. Back off to 41.5 and see what happens.

Try Fed Match Primers, they work great in my 308s.

Also don't be so picky on cleaning the thing. Shoot a few dozen rounds or so without cleaning and see what it does to your groups.

Just do one thing at a time and record the results.
__________________
Kraig Stuart
CPT USAR Ret
USAMU Sniper School Oct '78
Distinguished Rifle Badge 1071
kraigwy is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 06:49 AM   #5
Saltydog235
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 20, 2010
Location: Pawleys Island
Posts: 1,118
2nd Kraigwy on backing the charge down. Try some other powders, 4064, Varget, 8208 or 4350. My .308's love the Varget more than any other.
Saltydog235 is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 11:57 AM   #6
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
Well I certainly appreciate all the helpful info. Lookin like I got my work cut out for me from here on out.
Did try placing the bullet on the lands and there was really no difference. I'll back off the PC and see what that does. I've also got a 100 155gr A-MAX bullets coming soon. I figure it liked the factory 150's I got from meijers right. It hated the 180's I got one time. All over the place.
So I'll start there along with checking the rifle for anything loose or out of ordinary things. I do anyway before I shoot, but I'll double duty check it next time.

I was under the impression that the first cold/clean/dry bore shot is really the most important, being that's what it will be on the first shot of a hunt. ? Made sense when it was suggested.

Thanx again ALL! I'll let ya know what happens next time. Stay safe, aim and squeeze!
douggamm is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 12:21 PM   #7
emcon5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 10, 1999
Location: High Desert NV
Posts: 1,621
Just curious, how did you come up with that load? My Hornady book (7th edition)shows the max charge for that bullet with IMR4895 is 43.3 gr.

Sierra's load for their similar 168gr MK is even lower, 41.3 gr.
emcon5 is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 12:30 PM   #8
4runnerman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 16, 2010
Location: Minnsota
Posts: 2,807
I'd back off the power a bit. 4895 is great for 308s but I don't think you need 44 grns. Back off to 41.5 and see what happens

Ditto-My load is 42.3 gns 4895.
__________________
NRA Certified RSO
NwCP- Performance Isn't Optional

Last edited by 4runnerman; October 29, 2012 at 01:06 PM.
4runnerman is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 12:35 PM   #9
ronl
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2007
Posts: 778
My SPS seems to prefer Varget, but it also shot well with RL-15, 4064, 4895. I added a B&C Medalist A3 stock and it helped reduce the group size considerably, but it would shoot sub MOA with the factory stock if I was doing my part. The 168 Sierra Match Kings seem to shoot best, but 175 SMK's do well as well as the 155 Palma's. Mine also likes the COAL out to 2.820. Seems the Hornady 168's and 155's do not shoot quite as well in my rifle, but there is only a slight difference. Just picked up a box of Nosler 168's to try, but haven't loaded any of them yet. A few of my friends also picked up an SPS in .308, and they all have shot very well out of the box. Your's should be no exception. Just play around with load variations until you find out what works in your rifle and I bet you will be easily under 1 MOA. Hope this helps.
ronl is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 06:14 PM   #10
Rimfire5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 2, 2009
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 468
Shooting groups over 1.2 inches is not surprising if you are outside the preferred velocity for your stock & barrel combination and you are shooting with an OAL that happens to fit outside the harmonic balance of the rifle for that load.

I agree with several posters on your 44 grain 4895 load being on the high end.
I have never had really accurate groups that high up in the velocity range but I admit that I haven't shot more than 42.6 grains of H4895 either. That was where the accuracy started to really go south with that powder in my rifle. The 168 grain bullet groups at that load of H4895 for 4 different bullets at different depths averaged 0.626 with the worst load shooting 1.208 on average.

I noticed that you were using 2.800 as the OAL seating length. Some of my worst groups were shot at 2.800 seating depth, especially with bullets that have the ogive pretty far back from the tip. Then again with a different powder or bullet, some of the best groups were shot at 2.800 and 2.805. Some rifles have deep chambers and prefer a but deeper seating to get good performance.

I have had good results from H4895 in the 41.8 to 42.3 range using Sierral Match King 168 grain bullets depending on the seating depth. When I find a node (at 41.8 grains for example at 2.820 OAL), I find that I can retain the accuracy at that node if I reduce the OAL by 0.0005 for every 12.5 fps that I increase the velocity of a load. I have verified that the same effect holds for 175 grain SMKs and Nosler CC bullets.

I recently tried Nosler Custom Competition 168 grain bullets and have found they like to be seated about 0.01 deeper than the SMKs in my rifle to find the same accuracy node.

I recently have tried Vihta Vuori N140 powder in a range of 41.1 through 42.3 grains and have had even better results than with H4895. Looks like the velocity my rifle likes with N140 is a bit slower but, on average, the accuracy that results is slightly better than for H4895.

My best 10 hand loads with my .308 average 0.471 at 100 yards for 78 groups with 8 different 168 grain loads, one 150 grain load and one 175 grain load.
Six of the 168s are with Nosler bullets and the other 4 are with 150, 168 (2) and 175 SMKs.

Last edited by Rimfire5; October 29, 2012 at 06:21 PM.
Rimfire5 is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 06:43 PM   #11
CharlieDeltaJuliet
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 25, 2012
Posts: 750
I have the SPS tactical and it shoots .5 MOA all day long. I do not clean the copper fouling out after I shoot. I wait until it starts interfering with the accuracy. I was taught this by a long range shooting instructor (Todd Hodnett). If I clean the copper out after every day of shooting it loses accuracy and is a .75-1.25 MOA rifle. I still have a few rifles I clean rigorously after shooting, but not my SPS.
__________________
" The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to
keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect
themselves against tyranny in Government.
..." - Thomas Jefferson
CharlieDeltaJuliet is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 08:40 PM   #12
golfnutrlv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 5, 2008
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 1,347
Quote:
I was under the impression that the first cold/clean/dry bore shot is really the most important, being that's what it will be on the first shot of a hunt. ? Made sense when it was suggested
Ultimately, up to you. My gunsmith agrees with the fouled bore theory as well. He does not clean the barrel until the accuracy starts to be affected. He will then clean it, and go shoot 2-3 rounds to get it fouled and shooting where it should again.

Same could apply to hunting. Zero your rifle, clean, shoot 2 shots, go hunting. Clean after you get your freezer filled, or the season is over.
__________________
ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ
VIGILIA PRETIUM LIBERTATIS
"The price of liberty is vigilance"
America is at an awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards.
golfnutrlv is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 08:52 PM   #13
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
I came up with that PC load from 'Modern Reloading' 2nd ed. Pg.367.
Start grains of 41.0 and not exceed 45.4. With IMR4895.
I started light originally and worked up to 44gr. I've heard different things on line about PC. That's just where I wound up. Really never made a noticable difference in accuracy however. I have read thru many forums for info before I signed in here. Some of it has confused me a bit, but for the most part once I parse out all the info, I think I have a fair, but very green, understanding. I'm learning alot more now that I can ask specific questions. Thanx again to all.

I'll lessen the PC back to 41gr or so and let the barrel copper foul a bit. See what happens then. I was of the understanding that when a bore begins to foul it causes gauling of successive bullets after. Wouldn't that inherintly cause the bullet to be less stable due to surface roughness?

Last edited by douggamm; October 29, 2012 at 09:05 PM.
douggamm is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 09:16 PM   #14
Colorado Redneck
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 6, 2008
Location: Northeast Colorado
Posts: 1,066
I have a Remmy SPS Varmint in 204 Ruger. This rifle likes being fouled. I quite the deep cleaning after quizing some of the senior posters here in TFL. My SPS was the same way as yours, I could never get the patches to come out clean, and every time I cleaned it for the first 400 rounds or so, the patches looked like they had been dunked into India Ink. Even after cleaning if I ran another patch with Hoppes #9 down the bore it came out black.So now a wet patch, a couple of dry patches and it goes in the safe. Don't care if the bore is not spick and span---what I want is a shooter.

Long story short--the best round took a while to find. Don't give up---heck if you like to hand load and like to shoot it is all a good time.
Colorado Redneck is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 09:28 PM   #15
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
I hear ya Colorado. I love this sport and will continue till I'm dead and gone I'm certain. I love a challenge, and this one is real good one for me. I'm new to it at 45, but I'm a good listener too.
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 10:12 PM   #16
emcon5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 10, 1999
Location: High Desert NV
Posts: 1,621
Quote:
I'll lessen the PC back to 41gr or so and let the barrel copper foul a bit. See what happens then.
Actually, what you really need to do is start over.

According to the 7th edition Hornady manual, the starting charge for IMR4895 in 308Win with 168 grain bullets is 35 GR @ 2100 FPS. Charges are listed as:

35 GR @ 2100 FPS.
36.6 GR @ 2200 FPS.
38.3 GR @ 2300 FPS.
40 GR @ 2400 FPS.
41.5 GR @ 2500 FPS.
43.3 GR @ 2600 FPS, Max load.

If I was starting from scratch with these components, I would probably load 8 rounds each (10 would be better) at 39.5, 40.0, 40.5, 41.0, 41.5, and 42 grains and shoot a group with each to see which shot best. Shoot free recoil from sandbags, make sure you scope is properly parallax free

With a short action the magazine may limit this, but I like to measure the seating depth to the lands, then back off the OAL slightly (~.020" or so). You can also make up test batches with various seating depths to try and determine which your particular rifle likes best, but I have always got acceptable results determining seating depth/OAL this way.

As to cleaning, I clean when accuracy drops off. Depending on the rifle, this can be a long time. I have been on a P-dog hunts where I shot a few hundred rounds with no noticeable drop in accuracy.

Also, how are you cleaning? From the rear with a bore guide I hope, with a good coated one piece cleaning rod. You can wear out a rifle faster with a cleaning rod than shooting.
emcon5 is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 11:52 PM   #17
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
I tried to respond but no avail. I'll try again if this goes thru...
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old October 29, 2012, 11:54 PM   #18
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
Hmmm... well that worked.

Maybe I was too long winded the first time...? I had alot of accurate info for ya too. Oh well. Try again tomorrow. Gotta work tomorrow.
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old October 30, 2012, 09:12 AM   #19
CharlieDeltaJuliet
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 25, 2012
Posts: 750
Every rifle is different. I have a model 94 that loses it's groups after 15 or so rounds. My BA50 shoots better groups before cleaning just like the Remmy. My advice is to adjust your cleaning to suit each rifle. This is just my personal experience.
__________________
" The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to
keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect
themselves against tyranny in Government.
..." - Thomas Jefferson
CharlieDeltaJuliet is offline  
Old November 1, 2012, 11:43 PM   #20
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
new bullets came in and decided to whip up 6 combinations. Started with 155gr Hornady A-MAX bt @ 36gr up to 40gr. 5@36, 5@38,5@40. Then a set of Sierra MK 168 hpbt @ same loads. Only did 5 rnds per set. 30 over all rounds to test. 2.85 AOL. Gonna stick with this OAL. They fit the mag, not that it matters tho. I'm a one-at-a-timer. Just feels right to do it that way.

Gettin cold here in Michigan now. Gonna try and get out before the snow falls to run these and see what happens.
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old November 1, 2012, 11:47 PM   #21
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
I meant OAL. Whoops.
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old November 3, 2012, 09:57 AM   #22
geetarman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 18, 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 2,746
Doug,

I have a 700P that will not shoot 150/155 gr. bullets worth a hoot.

Mine comes alive with 168 gr, Nosler Custom Competition or Sierra 175 gr. Matchkings.

I have tried various powders and have pretty much settled down to H380 and BLC(2).

I don't have the load data in front of me but I do not load very hot.

I load to 2.800 oal unless I am shooting Berger 175 gr VLD. Those I load at
-.065 in. off the lands.


You will be AMAZED at how your groups can diverge depending on seating depth.

The same load can be really good or just terrible with as little as
+/- .010 in.deviation on seating depth.

I posted some groups a couple of years ago on this forum showing just how much deviation one can see. I will see if I can find the post.

If you check on all my posts, you can find back in 2009 about groupings.

It will be on the last page ( earliest ) of my posts. Lots of good stuff there.





Anyway, Berger has some good information for working up a load and that data can be used for other bullet manufacturers.
__________________
Geetarman

Carpe Cerveza

Last edited by geetarman; November 3, 2012 at 10:09 AM.
geetarman is offline  
Old November 8, 2012, 06:16 PM   #23
cw308
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 2010
Location: Long Island NY
Posts: 446
Just remember the colder the weather the lower your POI will be
cw308 is offline  
Old November 9, 2012, 10:09 PM   #24
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
So here it's 11.10.12
Haven't shot in a while. Have several loads worked up. Hope to get out tomorrow or Sunday and do some research. Its pretty cool here(warm for Michigan), but I will take humidity and temp readings as well as the rest of ambiant.

let ya know results ASAP.
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Old November 10, 2012, 02:44 PM   #25
douggamm
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2012
Location: Western Michigan
Posts: 17
went out and shot my test rounds and settled on 36gr imr4895 with 168 gr Sierra MK HPBT. Shot outstanding groups! The 155gr A-MAX bullets shot very well too.
Getting the PC down to 36gr really made all the difference. Also didn't clean it before hand either. Thanx to everyone that helped me out! Shootin is fun once again!
__________________
The ideal condition would be, I admit, that men should be right by instinct; But since we are all likely to go astray,
The reasonable thing is to learn from those who can teach. Sophocles, Antigone
douggamm is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.13721 seconds with 7 queries