View Full Version : Use the same Ammo For Sight-in and hunt?

October 12, 2009, 06:37 PM
Well I figure you should sight in with the same ammo your hunting with but I was just wondering how many of you just grab any old ammo around and use it? I plan on just using some cheaper stuff to get it where I want it and then a few rounds of the hunt ammo.

October 12, 2009, 06:45 PM
I stick with the same ammo that I am hunting with majority of the time. The only exception would be if I just mounted a new scope and thought it would be way off, then I might use some ammo that was close to the same bullet weight. For instance I am about to sight in a new 7 MAG. soon and I had bought some 162 Grain Hornady Ammo because I didn't think I would get to work up the reloads for it before fall. I found some spare time to load some 160 Grain bullets so I am going to try the reloads first to get the scope close, then see if the factory ammo is more accurate. Which ever round works the best in my rifle will be my 2009 rifle season round.

October 12, 2009, 07:09 PM
Always sight in and hunt with the same ammo.

October 12, 2009, 07:31 PM
What he said. Same ammo, same lot number. If differant lot number, try a few rounds first.

October 12, 2009, 07:31 PM
ALWAYS sight in with same ammo you are going to use for hunting!!!!

Art Eatman
October 12, 2009, 07:54 PM
I pretty much stay with one pet load, year around. Generally. Before deer season, it was my custom to load fresh ammo and sight in with that batch. Most of the time it was close, but two or three shots verified that I was sighted in as I wanted the rifle to be set up.

October 12, 2009, 08:47 PM
Sight in and hunt with the same load.......

But I will say this: I always buy whatever cheep stuff I can for plinking sessions at the range. I like to shoot quite a few rounds from offhand, and even left handed, before each hunting season. I see no reason to not use cheep stuff for that.

In the woods though it's always the same load I set the sights with. My dad would roll over in his grave if he knew I went to the woods with ammunition different from what I sighted in with.

And whoever posted the "same lot" advice. Dad would go so far as to keep loads seperated by lots of powder. Same principle.

James R. Burke
October 13, 2009, 07:37 PM
Yup sight in and hunt with same ammo.

October 13, 2009, 07:47 PM
Depending on where I have to start or confirm with a rifle, I usually get in the ball park with the cheaper stuff and finish out with the hunting round I am going to use. After that, I just confirm with the hunting round at the begining of a season or when I travel out of state to hunt. I document all that I have done, in a log book so I don't leave much to memory as it is going to pot. :mad:

Be Safe !!!

October 14, 2009, 09:52 AM
If you have a new gun or a new scope that you know is way out of wack i think you can use the cheapo stuff to get it close and then dial it in completely with the good rounds.

Then shoot lots of the good ones at different sized targets at different ranges from different positions.

October 14, 2009, 12:20 PM
I can tell you from experience that different flavors of ammo CAN and WILL group to different points of impact. When I was playing with a .270, I tried 4 different brands of ammo. 2 shot to the same points of impact. The other 2 were way off from the first two (one was high and left and the other low and right).

Old Grump
October 14, 2009, 03:47 PM
I'll practice and plink with whatever is cheap and available but the last time my gun gets fired before hunting I use hunting ammo and I save the rest of the box for hunting with. Usually not much difference but I want all the points in my favor I can get.

October 14, 2009, 08:07 PM
What OOOOOld Grump said. Was that to many O`s:D.

October 14, 2009, 08:32 PM
I shoot CMP surplus through my /06 through the off-season. 2-4 weeks before the season starts, I buy 2-3 boxes of the "expensive" hunting ammo, making sure it's all the same lot, and re-zero with that stuff. Might put a few more downrange with the nice stuff to stay fresh but generally don't mess with it once it's dialed in. Echoing the above, always use the exact same rounds as much as possible. I bring a backup rifle in .308, cartridges loaded with the same bullets, in the event I have a problem or doubt with my primary. Animals aren't paper - get it right the first time, every time.

October 16, 2009, 10:50 AM
For sighting in a hunting rifle you bet! I want to know that what I am using to hunt with is right on. Different bullets may behave very differently. Don't want to take that chance.

October 16, 2009, 11:53 AM
Only if I want the bullet to hit where I expect it to.

October 16, 2009, 12:34 PM
That's why I like loading my own ammo. So it's real easy to sight in and hunt with the same load.

I shot ~100 rounds of my hunting load last summer before the season...One shot one kill was the result.

Armed Citizen
October 16, 2009, 09:17 PM
Usually stick with the same ammo or at least same weight between two brands.

T. O'Heir
October 16, 2009, 11:56 PM
If you're not reloading, you'll have to try a box of as many brands and bullet weights as you can to find the ammo your rifle shoots best anyway. Once you've found the ammo, you need to sight in on a bench, then practice with it, off hand, at 100 yards until you can hit a 9" pie plate every time.
Just sighting in with your hunting ammo isn't good enough. You have to know exactly what the rifle and ammo will do in every weather condition. Cold weather can cause a change of POI with factory ammo. Can with reloads too, but that can be the ammo or the rifle. Both can be modified for weather. A wood stock that isn't sealed in the barrel channel can warp and change the POI.
Reloading lets you shoot more with ammo that is tailored to your rifle. Lets you adjust the load for different ambient weather conditions too.

October 17, 2009, 08:49 AM
You could use cheap ammo to sight it in, and test fire 2 or 3 shots with your hunting ammo and make sure everything is right. It really depends on the distance you're shooting. With the average 75-100 yard shot, it's not going to be a very big deal.