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Old February 25, 2013, 12:06 PM   #1
mmc205
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HELP! Finer points of big bore at longer ranges

Hi all!

I have a 500 S&W performance center 10.5 inch.

It currently wears a Ultradot matchdot and a front harris bipod.

I'm newer to revolver, but not handguns. I can usually shoot my sp101 357 double handed at 25 yards and hit a 6 inch steel plate.

So here it goes. I have been handloading and shooting this beast, and i'm having what i think are accuracy problems. I'm just trying to figure out if its me or the load or the setup.

At 25 yards, with handload #1 (see below) i can probably keep roughly a 2 inch group. I know i'm jerking the trigger a bit anticipating the recoil.

At 100 yards, i can't seem to get better than a group all over the paper (probably 16 inch group)
again, i know i'm jerking the trigger a bit, but i figured my group would be roughly 4x my 25 yard group at 100 yards. Meanwhile its approaching 8x

I'm using ranier plated bullets, and although there is no data for 300 grain bullets, i found the following for 350 gr jacketed

PowerPistol 23.0 gr. 1,446 FPS
PowerPistol 27.0 gr. 1,564 FPS MAX

with my bullet lighter, and my barrel longer, i'm going to wager i'm at roughly 1500-1600 fps, maybe a bit more.

I've heard plated bullets can do bad things at higher velocities and effect accuracy. I have no ill effects on the brass or gun shooting plated, though i occasionally feel "stuff" hitting me when shooting them, nothing that hurts, but i feel something.

Anyone have any idea whats going on? anyone shoot plated at distance? what can you expect for accuracy for a 500 s&w with a red dot at 100 yards?

thanks a lot guys!


load #1 = 300 rainer plated bullet, 25 grains power pistol, CCI large rifle primer
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Old February 25, 2013, 12:33 PM   #2
Magnum Wheel Man
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Get yourself a pistol rest, so you can see the "general" accuracy of your load... once I get a couple I like, I switch to a field rest to wring it out between my best 2-3 with the pistol rest...

BTW... I shoot alot of big bore handguns ( don't have a 500 yet, but a 4" - 500 is on my short list )
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Old February 25, 2013, 12:55 PM   #3
jglsprings
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I have not had good luck with Rainer plated bullets at velocities above 1100 fps. My 44 mag used to peel the plating off. Now it was years ago that I trying to push these at 44 mag velocities and I don't know if they have changed the process or design to handle these types of pressures.

I have had excellent results with plated bullets at velocities below 1100 FPS.

From their website...

http://www.rainierballistics.com/faq.php

Quote:
Q3. Do your bullets have ANY velocity restrictions?

A. In general, our bullets typically perform their best when shot at velocities no greater than 1,200 to 1,250 Feet per second (FPS).
I most certainly agree with MagWheelMan (almost always as a matter of fact). You need to take the flinch out of the equation to test the loads. Shoot that monster off the rest for load development.
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Old February 25, 2013, 01:37 PM   #4
mmc205
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what kind of pistol rest do you recommend?
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Old February 25, 2013, 02:06 PM   #5
Magnum Wheel Man
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I see they don't make mine anymore, ( or at least Midway no longer carrys it )

mine is similar to this, except it clamps on the front, with a spacer for use with autos, mine has a tripod base, & all 3 legs are easily adjustable...

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/517...-shooting-rest
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Old February 25, 2013, 02:16 PM   #6
jglsprings
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I've got leather bags and a hoppe's rifle rest that I use.

http://www.opticsplanet.com/shooters...sand-bags.html

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/768...-shooting-rest

For the longest time I used shot bags filled with rice and sewn closed.
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Old February 25, 2013, 02:26 PM   #7
Magnum Wheel Man
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I also have a bucket of sand bags sewn out of ( super sack, bulk tote bag material )

fair warning if you use a sand bag on anything 357 mag & hotter... protect your bag with some leather, or the barrel / cylinder gap will blow holes in them... ( keep your hands back as well )
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Last edited by Magnum Wheel Man; February 25, 2013 at 02:49 PM.
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Old February 25, 2013, 02:40 PM   #8
jglsprings
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Yep, what he said ^

The leather holds up better.
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Old February 25, 2013, 02:56 PM   #9
feets
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You will have a tough time shooting offhand with precision due to the weight of that thing.

Rest it, build a load it likes, and work your way out to longer unsupported shots.
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Old February 25, 2013, 03:47 PM   #10
mmc205
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i'm currently shooting it with a bipod and a sandbag in the rear. Ha, i can't believe you guys thought i would even THINK of freehanding at 100 yards

Thats whey i'm so confused. I may be jerking the trigger a wee bit, but the same setup is getting me 2 inch groups at 25 yards, which would equate to roughly 8 inch groups at 100 yards. I'm currently getting close to 20 inch groups (if you could even call them groups)
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Old February 25, 2013, 04:07 PM   #11
Magnum Wheel Man
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I assume the revolver is not scoped ???

my eyes aren't good enough to shoot 100 yards with "handgun" sights for "groups"

I'd look for my best groups are 25-30 yards, & after I picked my best, try to bust them out to 75 or 100, knowing full well, that "I" might be the problem with the group at 100 yards
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Old February 25, 2013, 04:13 PM   #12
mmc205
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it has an ultradot matchdot, no magnification though. the dot is 2 moa. I don't feel aiming inaccuracy has much to do with the bad accuracy i'm seeing though; with rifles, i can usually hold 2 inch groups with a very similar non-magnified optic
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Old February 25, 2013, 04:17 PM   #13
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robhof

If your groups are consistent at 25yds then it could well be your bullets. I use cast ww/linotype and gas checks for the lighter bullets and get consistent grouping to 100yds. I don't have a 500, but do have a 357max and velocities are about the same as you are getting. If you can find a light load for your gun as in 38 level and use them for practice at 15 to 25yds then switch up when the flinch factor is gone. I loaded down to 38 level for my max when I developed a flinch and closed my groups considerably. I keep some on hand and practice with them occasionally to get confortable with the max, when I haven't shot it for awhile.
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Old February 25, 2013, 04:27 PM   #14
Magnum Wheel Man
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^^^ that's an ecellent idea... get a load for Trailboss & at least have that as an option to help you train with the 500
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Old February 25, 2013, 04:28 PM   #15
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Here's a thought, use a lead bullet with a gas check, there are companies out there that will sell you some, like rimrock, if you aren't interested in casting your own. Do some load experimenting and maybe buy a copy of the 58 year old "Keith on sixguns", it wont have anything to say about your shooter, but does have some good stuff on long range shooting.
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Old February 25, 2013, 05:01 PM   #16
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May I suggest using a least a 12 pound pedestal rest...like a Hart or a Sinclair, with the butt of the pistol grip on sand bags. Do not put to much rest pressure on the barrel. If your bipod is attached to the barrel --- it is probably pushing your barrel and the P.O.I. upwards.

The feet of your bipod, should not rest on a hard surface, rather, dig the bipod feet into some soft sand or dirt.

Sometimes...I use a shooting strap from Cylinder & Slide --- for my rifle and pistol shooting --- that is almost as steady as shooting off a bench; though it won't stop a flinch.

Prep the trigger...then sweep your trigger finger through the final press, without hesitation; with proper follow through.

Anytime I have a shooting session with my Ruger 454 Casull Super Redhawk...I limit my sessions to no more than 20 rounds.

Use a padded shooting glove...if you haven't already.

If you develop a flinch...work through your flinch with a 22lr pistol or rifle.

Last edited by Erno86; February 25, 2013 at 05:35 PM.
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Old February 25, 2013, 06:21 PM   #17
cryogenic419
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How set are you on using the Rainier bullets? Have you considered giving Berrys a try? I have been using them for a while and they seem to hold up quite well and seem as accurate as higher priced bullets in the 500. I have been able to get out to about 70 yards or so freehand and still keep a respectable grouping.

Despite what Berrys website says about keep all bullets at 1200 or below, this one can go much faster. When I first picked them up that part never occured to me until I got home from the store so I shot them an email. I initially asked them if they had any load data for the bullets because every manual I had showed a starting load well above the 1200 mark. Their reply to me was:

Sorry, we do not have our own tested load data, but let me try to help you.
Oops, the 1200 FPS limit is for all of our other copper plated pistol bullets, but not this one.Our 350 Gr. RS bullet for the .500 has been tested from 1200FPS up to 1800 FPS with good results.

Look on www.Hodgdon.com and they have several different powders with loads for the 350 Gr. Hornady XTP which will work with our bullets. Many customers have used :Lil'Gun for their loads.

Good Shooting,
Bud Watson
Berrys Mfg Inc
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Old February 26, 2013, 01:54 PM   #18
saleen322
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Big Bore Accuracy

I am satisfied with my .460:



Smith always could make a good revolver IMHO.
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Old February 26, 2013, 02:04 PM   #19
Gdawgs
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When I got my 460, I was convinced there was something wrong with the gun because it was so inaccurate. I had two issues going on. With one load I was working with, the bullets were tumbling in flight, so those were all over the place(could only keep then inside about a 5 foot radius at 25 yds). The other was my flinch. I figured I was flinching somewhat(like you) but I didn't think it was bad enough to make my groups(if you could even call them groups) around 8" to 10" at 50 yds. To test my flinch theory, I started loading my revolver Russian Roulette style. Only one hot load in the cylinder, then spun the cylinder so I didn't know when it was going to go off. One try like that and I knew right away what my problem was, LOTS of flinch. After concentrating (real hard) not to flinch on each shot, my patterns tightened right up. Give that a try and see how bad your flinch really is.
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Old February 26, 2013, 05:46 PM   #20
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The flinching is a big issue with big bore shooting. Even if you normally don't flinch, the more you shoot the more tired you become and you try to compenate. Best to just hang it up and shoot another day.
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Old February 26, 2013, 06:59 PM   #21
saleen322
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Long range shooting

Some things that you may find helpful. Even if you have to talk to yourself while you are shooting, DO NOT let yourself jerk the trigger. Just keep telling yourself to be smooth and steady straight to the rear. Keep a firm grip on the pistol and your hands will not take much recoil as you are making the gun move your whole arm--not hitting you in the hand. If you have to wear some type of padded glove due to recoil, you are likely not holding the pistol firmly enough. Put something padded under your shooting side elbow when shooting off the bench as the recoil will cause it to smack the bench top and eventually that will effect your concentration. If you are correctly focused on the front sight (or optic aiming point), your eye should follow it through the recoil cycle as opposed to finding yourself looking at the target after the revolver fires. I learned more about precision shooting and follow though from silhouette, air, and free pistol shooting than from anything else and if you have even a hobby level air gun, it is worth the time to train with it. Good luck to you.

Last edited by saleen322; February 27, 2013 at 07:33 AM.
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Old February 27, 2013, 02:37 AM   #22
mmc205
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HELP! Finer points of big bore at longer ranges

Thanks all, great advice!
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Old March 1, 2013, 03:35 PM   #23
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Don't shoot more than 10-15 full powered loads at a sitting. The effect is cumulative.
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