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Old 02-18-2019, 08:11 PM   #1
Bowyer
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Default Do you sort your bullets?

I've been reloading about 12 years mostly for hunting and now wanting to improve my accuracy. I started sorting my bullets by weight but have only seen a small increase in accuracy. I rarely shoot beyond 200 yards.

Just in case someone asks, I load for 223, 243, 25-06, 6.5 Grendel, 6.5 CM & 308.
On good days I can take any of these and shoot between 1/2" and 1" groups at 100 yards but there are always the occasional fliers. I feel like I have honed my shooting skills to the point that I know I made a good shot and the bullet hits an inch away and I have to blame the bullet.

1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?
2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy?
3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?

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Old 02-18-2019, 08:17 PM   #2
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I don't sort mine by weight but I do sort by brand. Winchester shoots pretty good for me and easy to find.
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:32 PM   #3
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Don't go down that wormhole, you will start sorting by weight and ogive. Next thing you know you will be weighing brass and trimming, primer pockets and flash holes. Next thing you know you will have 5 different piles of brass and bullets and you won't know what to do with them.
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:35 PM   #4
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You would be better off buying a set of windflags & learning to buck the wind and mirage over any sort of bullet sorting to improve group size...
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artos View Post
You would be better off buying a set of windflags & learning to buck the wind and mirage over any sort of bullet sorting to improve group size...
Wind flags.
Do you just set them near the target?

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Old 02-18-2019, 08:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrc View Post
Don't go down that wormhole, you will start sorting by weight and ogive. Next thing you know you will be weighing brass and trimming, primer pockets and flash holes. Next thing you know you will have 5 different piles of brass and bullets and you won't know what to do with them.
You should be prepping brass that way and weight sorting brass any if accuracy is your goal.

I donít sort bullets. Berger is good for me. I wonít waste my time if reloads are shooting 1Ē. Need to be .5 or under. Iím pretty OCD about case prep and seating. Obviously quality primers and an accurate powder charge plays a large role. Do it all right or donít do it at all is how I look at it.
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Old 02-18-2019, 09:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trophy8 View Post
You should be prepping brass that way and weight sorting brass any if accuracy is your goal.



I donít sort bullets. Berger is good for me. I wonít waste my time if reloads are shooting 1Ē. Need to be .5 or under. Iím pretty OCD about case prep and seating. Obviously quality primers and an accurate powder charge plays a large role. Do it all right or donít do it at all is how I look at it.
Thanks, I'll start sorting brass by weight.
You mentioned bullet seating, this is what brought me to my questions. While I was loading yesterday I emptied a box of bullets and opened another. The bullets in the second box had an average of .009" to .012" longer bearing surface than the first box.

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Old 02-18-2019, 09:18 PM   #8
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First question is: are you working with custom/semi-custom rifles or factory rifles? I have found that you can usually take factory rifles only to a certain level of accuracy by precision loading for the most part. To get much below 0.5 MOA groups consistently you nearly always have to work with a quality custom rig.
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Old 02-18-2019, 09:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowyer View Post
1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?It depends on your purpose and the rest of your loading process such as brass prep, etc.
2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy? So far, Sierra MatchKing, and I am trying out Berger Hybrids in my 6.5x47.
3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?My Sierra and Bergers are both really consistent, but they will still vary from lot to lot. I have been shooting Hornady ELDM in my 6.5x47 and the bearing surface on them is not consistent within the same box. It has been causing me headaches when doing seating depth testing because the seating depth is not consistent due to this. When I sort them by bearing surface I can get each group to load dead on every time.
.

Last edited by WTucker; 02-18-2019 at 09:33 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 02-18-2019, 09:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McClain View Post
First question is: are you working with custom/semi-custom rifles or factory rifles? I have found that you can usually take factory rifles only to a certain level of accuracy by precision loading for the most part. To get much below 0.5 MOA groups consistently you nearly always have to work with a quality custom rig.
Factory rifles.
Thanks, I know you're right. It's just that sometimes I get really tight, less than .5" groups, and it makes me think at least some of my guns are capable more consistent groups.

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Old 02-18-2019, 09:42 PM   #11
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Need more info about your equipment and process.

What dies are you using?
Are you full length resizing or neck sizing? Checking case length and trimming?
Trimming case necks for uniform thickness?
How are you weighing powder charges?

If you are 100% sure that the fliers aren't the shooters fault then you need to make sure you are weighing charges and going through every step exactly the same. I double weigh all charges just to be sure. There are other good suggestions above as well.

The devil is in the details.

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Old 02-18-2019, 09:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WTucker View Post
.
Thanks for your insight.
I am seeing the same thing that you are experiencing with Hornady bullets and am starting to suspect it is the culprit for wild fliers.

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Old 02-18-2019, 09:47 PM   #13
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Also, I like Bergers, Sierras and Noslers for accuracy. Just my preference. I dont like Hornady and havent ever tried Speer or Lapua. Havent loaded a lot of Barnes either but have been told that they can be very accurate out of a bolt gun.

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Old 02-18-2019, 09:52 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crash8005 View Post
Need more info about your equipment and process.

What dies are you using? "Hornady and Lee"
Are you full length resizing or neck sizing?
"Mostly neck sizing and full length every 3rd time."
Checking case length and trimming? "Yes"
Trimming case necks for uniform thickness? "No"
How are you weighing powder charges? "Balance beam RCBS M500"

If you are 100% sure that the fliers aren't the shooters fault then you need to make sure you are weighing charges and going through every step exactly the same. I double weigh all charges just to be sure. There are other good suggestions above as well.

The devil is in the details.

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Old 02-18-2019, 10:02 PM   #15
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My point is the wind & conditions will affect your group size way more easily than any bullet sorting.

You need to remember that every gun / bbl is dialed into a certain amount of obtainable accuracy. Some will never get under MOA & the hummers are few & far between...to be getting .5moa from a factory rig is outstanding & trying to chase that same gun into 1/4" consistently is likely futile.

Again, a set of windflags set up in stages from the bench to the target can really shrink groups, but would recommend getting to know them with a custom rig capable of 1/4" consistent groups to get their value.
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:04 PM   #16
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On good days I can take any of these and shoot between 1/2" and 1" groups at 100 yards but there are always the occasional flier.

If your chasing accuracy, at 100 yards they should all be in one hole. If you get fliers you did something wrong or have a reloading issue. Half inch groups are good at 400 yards or beyond, but typically less that half inch is acheivable with the right gear and right reloading equiptment and components

I feel like I have honed my shooting skills to the point that I know I made a good shot and the bullet hits an inch away and I have to blame the bullet.
wrong


1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?
sorting by bearing surface is much better than sorting by weight

2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy?
berger

3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?
none besides custom bullets. BUT bergers,
Lapuas, some sierras, and some hornadys shoot very very very well.


Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk[/QUOTE]

Theres a lot of unknowns in what your doing. Hard to narrow it all down. Your problem could be as simple as parralex issues. No telling really. You need to break down each step of your process reloading wise.
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:06 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowyer View Post
Wind flags.
Do you just set them near the target?

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Multiple distances. Multiple flags.
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:07 PM   #18
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I don’t sort bullets. If I’m working with a bolt gun, I’ll sort brass by headstamp.

It really comes down to what you’re doing with the gun. I personally don’t have any wishes to chase the “perfect” group at any distance. I’m ok with MOA performance and super happy with 3/4 or half MOA, as I either shoot fairly large targets in 3 gun or shoot critters 300 yards or less.

IMO, you can get to the point of diminishing returns reeeeeeeal quick.
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:08 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Big problems here if going for accuracy.
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Old Yesterday, 08:46 AM   #20
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I just ordered a Bob Green bullet comparator. It measures from the ogive to the spot where the seating stem touches. It really helps you achieve consistent seating depth.
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Old Yesterday, 09:13 AM   #21
trophy8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SNIPER3388 View Post
On good days I can take any of these and shoot between 1/2" and 1" groups at 100 yards but there are always the occasional flier.

If your chasing accuracy, at 100 yards they should all be in one hole. If you get fliers you did something wrong or have a reloading issue. Half inch groups are good at 400 yards or beyond, but typically less that half inch is acheivable with the right gear and right reloading equiptment and components

I feel like I have honed my shooting skills to the point that I know I made a good shot and the bullet hits an inch away and I have to blame the bullet.
wrong


1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?
sorting by bearing surface is much better than sorting by weight

2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy?
berger

3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?
none besides custom bullets. BUT bergers,
Lapuas, some sierras, and some hornadys shoot very very very well.


Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
Theres a lot of unknowns in what your doing. Hard to narrow it all down. Your problem could be as simple as parralex issues. No telling really. You need to break down each step of your process reloading wise.[/QUOTE]

.5Ē at 400+. Impressive.
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Old Yesterday, 09:16 AM   #22
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If I was shooting benchrest competition I probably would as well as several other things to make each round exactly the same in every possible way.
The 3 most accurate bullets I have reloaded are Barnes, Berger and Nosler in that order. One exception is Speer TNT 50gr HP flatbase in .224 for my 22-250 varmint rifle. These shoot in the 2's consistently with 36grs of H380. Also some guns prefer flat base bullets over boattail. My ladyboy calibers like .224 up to 6mm generally do better with flat base and the grown man calibers .30 and up like boattail design best. Not sure why but I just let the gun decide what it likes best.

If you are shooting boattail switch and try some flatbase or vice versa. Might help you find what your gun likes.

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Old Yesterday, 09:34 AM   #23
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I sort my 7mm Hornady's prior to loading. Doesn't take but a few minutes.

The practice has me putting aside 9-10 out of 100. I also trickle feed the powder for these loads. Just some added confidence and total consistency in an easy area.

I only shoot 6-12 rounds of these per year. 3 boxes last a long time.
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Old Yesterday, 09:51 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowyer View Post
Thanks for your insight.
I am seeing the same thing that you are experiencing with Hornady bullets and am starting to suspect it is the culprit for wild fliers.

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Do you know anyone with a gun that will consistently shoot in the .3/.2's @ 100? Just like shooting a gun like this will confirm your shooting skills reloading for the same weapon will help confidence in your reloading process.

I think sometimes numbers are thrown around that make people question their shooting, and in this case reloading process. Shooting pencil barrel factory rifles to 1/2 MOA @ 200 yards is a win in my opinion.
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Old Yesterday, 09:55 AM   #25
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The key word here is consistency in precision shooting. If you are doing everything right and are getting tight groups only occasionally, that doesn’t necessarily mean your equipment is capable of that kind of precision. Just as you sometimes have flyers that open up groups from the norm, one can also have flyers that go the other way and create groups tighter than the normal. That doesn’t necessarily mean your equipment is capable of that kind of accuracy (or actually precision). Those occasional tight groups might be flukes. To chase these extreme groups, especially in many factory rifles are often unobtainable. I know, I have tried too many times.
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Old Yesterday, 09:58 AM   #26
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If youíre gonna do that then you may as well get a meplat trimmer or crimper to get the nose of each bullet exactly the same. Go down that hole and Iíll send you some crayons to the nut house in the next six months. You may have mentioned it and if you hit did Iím sorry I missed it but I think that turning your necks is one of the more important things you can do to ensure consistent release.
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Old Yesterday, 10:12 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SNIPER3388 View Post
On good days I can take any of these and shoot between 1/2" and 1" groups at 100 yards but there are always the occasional flier.

If your chasing accuracy, at 100 yards they should all be in one hole. If you get fliers you did something wrong or have a reloading issue. Half inch groups are good at 400 yards or beyond, but typically less that half inch is acheivable with the right gear and right reloading equiptment and components

I feel like I have honed my shooting skills to the point that I know I made a good shot and the bullet hits an inch away and I have to blame the bullet.
wrong


1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?
sorting by bearing surface is much better than sorting by weight

2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy?
berger

3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?
none besides custom bullets. BUT bergers,
Lapuas, some sierras, and some hornadys shoot very very very well.


Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
Theres a lot of unknowns in what your doing. Hard to narrow it all down. Your problem could be as simple as parralex issues. No telling really. You need to break down each step of your process reloading wise.[/QUOTE]

One hole means different things to different folks. @ 100 .3 moa will typically be touching and likely torn to connect all shots. .2 is more like one hole but still not truly a one hole group in the .1 / .09 area.

I am guessing you meant 1/2 moa @ 400? 1/2 inch at that range is 1/8th moa, and more than impressive.
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Old Yesterday, 11:42 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -HIC- View Post
Theres a lot of unknowns in what your doing. Hard to narrow it all down. Your problem could be as simple as parralex issues. No telling really. You need to break down each step of your process reloading wise.
One hole means different things to different folks. @ 100 .3 moa will typically be touching and likely torn to connect all shots. .2 is more like one hole but still not truly a one hole group in the .1 / .09 area.

I am guessing you meant 1/2 moa @ 400? 1/2 inch at that range is 1/8th moa, and more than impressive.[/QUOTE]

Bingo. I hate when I hear ďone ragged holeĒ lol.
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Old Yesterday, 12:05 PM   #29
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One hole means different things to different folks. @ 100 .3 moa will typically be touching and likely torn to connect all shots. .2 is more like one hole but still not truly a one hole group in the .1 / .09 area.

I am guessing you meant 1/2 moa @ 400? 1/2 inch at that range is 1/8th moa, and more than impressive.[/QUOTE]

I dont talk in moa lol. I shoot competively. Half inch is clearer to understand for most people. Moa is slighly lsrger than an inch so at 100 we are talking about 4.5 inch groups to say moa... but a 4.5 inch group at 400 is horrible to me. Id change barrels at that point.

Im very deep into it all. Way more than most.

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Old Yesterday, 12:21 PM   #30
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Nah. I just load them and shoot them... Been doing it that way since 1980.
Unless your going address every variable, which is very time consuming, then it's a slight waste of time..
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Old Yesterday, 12:53 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SNIPER3388 View Post
One hole means different things to different folks. @ 100 .3 moa will typically be touching and likely torn to connect all shots. .2 is more like one hole but still not truly a one hole group in the .1 / .09 area.

I am guessing you meant 1/2 moa @ 400? 1/2 inch at that range is 1/8th moa, and more than impressive.
I dont talk in moa lol. I shoot competively. Half inch is clearer to understand for most people. Moa is slighly lsrger than an inch so at 100 we are talking about 4.5 inch groups to say moa... but a 4.5 inch group at 400 is horrible to me. Id change barrels at that point.

Im very deep into it all. Way more than most.[/QUOTE]

Are you a real life sniper?
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Old Yesterday, 03:16 PM   #32
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Quote:
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I dont talk in moa lol. I shoot competively. Half inch is clearer to understand for most people. Moa is slighly lsrger than an inch so at 100 we are talking about 4.5 inch groups to say moa... but a 4.5 inch group at 400 is horrible to me. Id change barrels at that point.

Im very deep into it all. Way more than most.


Barrel makers must love you then!!!!
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Old Yesterday, 03:33 PM   #33
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Parallax is something else I was going to mention like trophy8 said. It can definitely cause flier issues if you are not paying attention to it.
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Old Yesterday, 04:31 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SNIPER3388 View Post
One hole means different things to different folks. @ 100 .3 moa will typically be touching and likely torn to connect all shots. .2 is more like one hole but still not truly a one hole group in the .1 / .09 area.

I am guessing you meant 1/2 moa @ 400? 1/2 inch at that range is 1/8th moa, and more than impressive.
I dont talk in moa lol. I shoot competively. Half inch is clearer to understand for most people. Moa is slighly lsrger than an inch so at 100 we are talking about 4.5 inch groups to say moa... but a 4.5 inch group at 400 is horrible to me. Id change barrels at that point.

Im very deep into it all. Way more than most.[/QUOTE]

Change Barrels.......
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Old Yesterday, 05:24 PM   #35
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Thanks to everyone who shared their knowledge and insight.
I probably won't be buying a custom rifle any time soon but I will consider everything mentioned and begin to up my game.

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Old Yesterday, 06:34 PM   #36
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[QUOTE=SNIPER3388;I dont talk in moa lol. I shoot competively. Half inch is clearer to understand for most people. Moa is slighly lsrger than an inch so at 100 we are talking about 4.5 inch groups to say moa... but a 4.5 inch group at 400 is horrible to me. Id change barrels at that point.

Im very deep into it all. Way more than most.[/QUOTE]

I do not know you so I am going to give you the benefit of the doubt. This is not Snipers Hide. We cant go into these conversations thinking everyone is talking about a full custom rig. Saying that 4.5" @ 400 is horrible is a bit overboard.
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Old Yesterday, 06:37 PM   #37
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Who broke the quote function on this thread?
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Old Yesterday, 08:44 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WTucker View Post
Parallax is something else I was going to mention like trophy8 said. It can definitely cause flier issues if you are not paying attention to it.
The sniper338 mentioned parallax not trophy8, just making it clear he knows is stuff

Note: I spelted parallax correctly I think.
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Old Yesterday, 08:50 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sendit View Post
The sniper338 mentioned parallax not trophy8, just making it clear he knows is stuff

Note: I spelted parallax correctly I think.
Thanks for straightening me out. I think some of the quotes got messed up. Lol
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Old Yesterday, 08:53 PM   #40
MJC
Nubbin' Buck
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: Branchville, NJ
Hunt In: State land
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I prefer Berger bullets for my long range 6.5 Lapua. I sort by ogive because I believe bullet jump (as well as a ten other independent factors) affects accuracy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowyer View Post
I've been reloading about 12 years mostly for hunting and now wanting to improve my accuracy. I started sorting my bullets by weight but have only seen a small increase in accuracy. I rarely shoot beyond 200 yards.

Just in case someone asks, I load for 223, 243, 25-06, 6.5 Grendel, 6.5 CM & 308.
On good days I can take any of these and shoot between 1/2" and 1" groups at 100 yards but there are always the occasional fliers. I feel like I have honed my shooting skills to the point that I know I made a good shot and the bullet hits an inch away and I have to blame the bullet.

1. Would I benefit by sorting my bullets according to bearing surface?
2. Which bullets do you guys like best for accuracy?
3.Which bullets are the most consistent with all measurements?

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Old Yesterday, 09:59 PM   #41
texag93
Pope & Young
 
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Angelo, Tx
Hunt In: Panhandle
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Id sort brass before bullets. I shoot Berger bullets for precision. I start with quality brass and sort them by weight.
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