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Old March 12, 2012, 10:02 PM   #1
Join Date: January 19, 2010
Location: Alabama, USA
Posts: 91
How much longer would you go ?

Hello fellow TFL folks,
Im now getting started doing reloads for my Ruger MkII 270 Win bolt action (sporter barrel) with the beautiful Boyds laminate stock that I bedded myself. Its shooting "decent" with H4350 with Nosler 130 gr ballistic tips but I want to tinker with the bullet seating depth the see if I can improve my grouping ,if any. So far the best grouping at 100 yds was with 52.8 grains of H4350, anything hotter and the groups would start to string up and widen and were not very accurate. I have also purchased one pound of H4831sc butI want to get the H4350 dialed in before I jump to the other powder to try...sorta like one thing at a time for me to see the results.
About 2 or 3 months ago I purchased some good used reloading goodies with the advice of the fine folks here on this forum, such as a new Lyman 49th manual, RCBS RCII press,RCBS dies, new Possom Hollow case trimmer and primer seating depth gauge/cleaner,etc as well as some Nosler 130 gr ball tips.
I will admit that Im new to reloading but I understand what the process is to reload.
Ok, having said that, heres what Im asking; the "stock" Federal OAL length for a 130 gr ballistic tip round out of the box is 3.255. This is where I have been seating my reloads at so far, just matching the factory case OAL .
I found my OAL length last nite to touch the rifle lands at 3.435, HOWEVER,...the rifle's max magazine length is 3.425, so Im guessing that in order to prevent cases from being jammed up in the magazine, I may want to shorten the measurement of the
magazine measurement by say .020 to .030 ? IS that a safe round figure for that to prevent hangups?
So if I now have a measurement from above of the mag of 3.425 minus
the .030, that gives me a OAL measurement of 3.395. Subtracting the 3.395 minus the OAL factory length of 3.255 gives us a difference of .140, which it seems is the measurement I have to play around with for seating depth. Am I right so far? I DONT want to seat the bullet right at the lands because I dont want to possiblly have an increase in pressure and shorter throat life of the barrel. Is there a length that I do not need to go over OAL wise ? Obviously I know not to go right to the max mag length of 3.425.
The cases Im using have been FL resized and then trimmed by me
to 2.530, which is whats listed in the Lyman manual as the trim to length. I also have some brass that have been once fired by me that I plan on neck sizing only and see how they perform.
So just how many thousanths further out would you take your bullet out at a time to start experimenting with the seating length? I will load about 5 or 6 rounds of each length to try with at a time.
Thanks and I will look forward the your replies.
johnmcgowan is offline  
Old March 13, 2012, 12:22 AM   #2
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Join Date: March 16, 2010
Posts: 733
I would go .010 at a time... I played with seating depth on my .308... the recommended 2.8" gave the best results, shorter and longer OAL produced bigger groups every time....
dacaur is offline  
Old March 13, 2012, 07:06 AM   #3
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Join Date: June 17, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 4,764
I found my OAL length last night to touch the rifle lands at 3.435, HOWEVER,...the rifle's max magazine length is 3.425...
OK, you have built-in standOFF of 0.010" if you max out the magazine length.
That is a good place to start.

In the end you "probably" will choose 0.020 OFF -- just MHO

That said, I'd suggest you get a Hornady comparator set to get true measurement of how
the ogive is setting up relative to the lands for you. Bullet OALs (especially exposed lead designs)
tend to vary a bit... and you want to reference off the ogive to be as repeatable as possible....

Last edited by mehavey; March 13, 2012 at 02:29 PM.
mehavey is offline  
Old March 14, 2012, 07:58 PM   #4
Join Date: January 19, 2010
Location: Alabama, USA
Posts: 91
Thanks guys!!
I made some batches last night and I moved some of them +.010 to try out. I will do a few batches at a time and see where it takes me.
Thanks again.
johnmcgowan is offline  

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