New Loads

I started the next part of eliminating possible causes of the horrible shot placement with removing the muzzle break. This was a little bit of an adventure. The shop down the street from my home was unable to remove the break due to having broken the tool they normally would use for a break like the one I currently am using.

This left me to take care of it myself, and when I am left to my own devices things can become expensive.

With this in mind I grab a pair of channel locks,  (it is strange that a single tool can be referred to as a pair), and twisted on the break until it broke loose. With this work done I remounted the SWFA 10x, and proceed to make some new loads using a different bullet.

I decided to try the 168 grain Hornady hollow point boat tail match, this is a round that I have had a lot of successes with, and the fact that it is the only other .308 bullet that I currently have in inventory also played a major role in this decision.

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With the break removed the 175 grain Nosler load still did not perform. The first two rounds were used to adjust the scope, with the third round landing two inches below the bullseye I left the adjustment alone for the next two shots in an effort to create a decent group.

That turned out to be a failure.

Load number 42, and 43 both were made with IMR 4350, wear as load number 44 used Reloader 22. All three have shown great potential, and will  be continued to be tested.

First was load 44, that produced a sub 1 inch group with a flier about two inches above the est of the group. I will take the blame for this as I was already becoming a little twitchy because of the recoil.

Load 42, after a scope adjustment, had two shots touching, with shot three, and four producing a one hole group, then a low left flyer.

For the final five shots, four rounds produced two separate two round groups, that were slightly larger than an inch, with the fifth round also producing a low left flyer.

By the end of this round of testing I was done for the day, and went to the handgun range, to enjoy a revolver I don’t spend enough time shooting.

Conclusions.

The 175 grain Nosler Custom Competition seem not to work well for me,  lucky I only have about 3,200 left.

A muzzle break will be needed no matter what. I will most likely go with a model that ports the gasses to the sides allowing the rifle to move in a more level straight line.

I need to work with my Model 27 a little bit more.

01/12/2017

 

 

 

 

Rollis Throws A Hissy Fit.

One the challenges in developing a rifle system is finding an accurate load that is precise. This can be a little annoying, if not completely frustrating.

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The RUM, only having 100 rounds through it, is proving to have a lot of precision problems, though the accuracy is showing potential in so far as the rounds are landing near the center of the target. The group size is rather large, or lacking precision. With an end goal of striking targets at over a mile (1,760 yards), groups that are measured in sizes of multiple inches at only 100 yards will not cut it.

After voting I headed to the range with most of my firearms to enjoy them for maybe the last time. I started with the RUM using load number 41, the same that I had been working with for the last several outings. This load has shown some potential, and needing to have as much consistency as possible I decided to stick with it.

The first shot struck one inch left, and one inch low of the point of aim, this would be known as the cold shot with a dirty bore, also commonly known as a cold, dirty. This has been a common occurrence with this rifle. I allowed the rifle to cool  for 10 minutes. The next shot was at least two inches high, and left. Needless to say I was disappointed with the results.

So disappointed in fact that I fired off the remaining 18 rounds. Then I removed the scope, and bagged the rifle up in it’s case then placed it in the bed of the truck where the bad guns have to ride.

The most likely causes for this complete failure will most likely be one of the following.

  1. Scope
  2. Ammunition
  3. Muzzle Break
  4. Barrel

The first thing I did was remove the scope, and test it on the .308 Win. After only a couple sight in shots the rifle was smacking bullseye with it.

The scope, load, and rifle combination has been used on other occasions, and have proved to be both accurate, and precise.

This leaves me confident that the scope is still working fine.

The next item will be to remove the muzzle break,  and then fire 5 more rounds of load number 41 which I expect to perform poorly. Unless it is a simple case of the muzzle break not being compatible with this rifle, which as I have stated before would be a shame. But as with anything firearm related, even though on paper it should work well there is a good amount of voodoo involved in building an accurate rifle.

I will also be trying different brands, and weights of bullets. Sometimes something as simple as a change in bullet weight, or the slight change of the profile of the bullet can produce vastly different results.

The most worrisome possibility would be the need to replace the barrel.

Rifle barrels should be thought of in the same manner as a car tire, there is only so many miles a tire can travel until it is no longer capable of holding the road, and a barrel will only survive a certain number of rounds until the chamber, and rifling is worn beyond its useful life. Some competitors will have to change a barrel out after only 1,200-1,500 rounds in the faster calibers. My hope is to be able to run this barrel at least 3,000 rounds before having to replace it. 

 Having a new barrel mounted would not be very difficult, but the price of even a lower end custom barrel, and the gun smithing it involves would almost be the same as the cost of the rifle itself. and even though at some point in time it will happen I really don’t want it to be in the first year with only 120 rounds down the tube.

 More later. 12/04/2016 Orange Park, Florida. 

Results

I made it out to the range a couple of weeks ago, and overall the results were mixed.

 First thing I did was fired the last 5 rounds of factory Norma ammunition. This was to to rezero the scope after having the new lower rings mounted.  The processes went very fast which was very surprising because I expected the horizontal impact to be off. I expected it to be high because the original mount was about twice as high. Fortunately it was dead on as far as horizontal impact was concerned.

 The vertical position was about 2 full mills to the right. Or about 18-20 inches. I made the necessary adjustments, then took my next shot. that one was also still off the red stickie bullseye but only buy a couple of inches the third and fourth rounds were in the red.

 I suspect the scope being that far off to the right had something to do with the fact that I did drop it on the windage knob not once but twice when I was mounting it.

 On to the first load.

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 This is load number 38, and as you can see I was making a nice group but shot number 3 was pulled from me flenching because of the recoil, I was still able to finish the last two shots with a group at slightly larger than an inch. I went ahead and made 10 more rounds of this load for further experimentation.

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 Load number 39 did not fare too well. If I was a gun magazine writer I would explain how this is a perfect group for the intended use. If my intended use was to miss the target I guess I could be happy with this group also. The group was shot number 11-15 for the day and I was starting to become a little twitchy, so the poor showing of this load may be due to my sissiness.

On this day I did not try load number 40, it would of been a waste of money. 

 At the end of this session I was at shot number 50 for the rifle. My plan will be to run it until shot number 100 then clean the bore of all the copper fouling. This will allow me to start building my fouling chart to learn where the fouling equilibrium is. More on this in a dedicated post.

  The next trip to the range will also include the much anticipated muzzle break. If it works as planned I will be sending some heavy metal down range soon.

  Too be continued. 

PS another development.

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New Toys

07/31/2016

 I arrived home Saturday Night and sitting on the dining room table was a couple of boxes that I have been expecting for a while, and quite happy to finally have received.

 The first was a bag of 500 .308 caliber 175 grain bullets manufactured by Nosler ammunition company. They are part of the Nosler Custom Competition line of components and used in the company’s match grade cartridges, and sold with the normal ”Match Grade” price tag.

 Being that they are .308 diameter the number of different cartridges that can utilize these bullets is quite numerous. One of my goals is to have 10,000 put away for my retirement. Also in case that another run on ammunition, and components occur I will at lest have some items put back.

  This particular lot will be segregated for load development, and normal use. 

 

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Bucket O’ Bullets

 The second item was a 25 round box of of Nosler Brass in of course 300 RUM. These will also be put to the side for later use. 

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 The most important item is the reloading dies. Now I can start my load development which if I do my part, and if the rifle is mechanically capable I will be starting on my next leg of my journey for 1,500 yard hits.

 More to come shortly.

Ohio

Well the wife and I recently returned from visiting family, and friends in the kind of great state of Ohio. It would be much better if the dummies had not elected the bag of dog shit John Kasich Governor. But that is a rant for someplace else.

One of the things I wanted done was to have the muzzle of the rifle threaded for a muzzle break, and maybe at some point a silencer. 

 I had Dana Brownfield of D&D Shooting Supplies do the needed metal work. Though at this time the break has not been installed. The particular break that we decided would work best had to be ordered, and I decided to have Dana apply a light sand blasted finish to  give it a flat appearance. This will help with not spooking any game if at some point I decide to use this rifle for hunting.

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 Because I now live about 900 miles from the Dana’s shop he will be shipping it to me. This should not cause any issues as the break that we chose to use has port holes milled 360 degrees around its surface, this will eliminate any timing issues.  

 Had I gone with a break that exhaust to the side, having the port lined up perfectly would be very important. Because the ports are 360 degrees there will be no correct position thus eliminating any negative pull off during recoil that could occur with a break that was timed incorrectly.

 The disadvantage to this system is that the muzzle blast will kick up dirt, and stone throwing this debris into my face.

 Don’t worry ladies nothing in this world could ever harm my most lovely appearance.

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 I also purchased a set of low profile scope rings, a new set of sling swivels, a set of reloading dies, and some virgin brass for load development.

 The new mounts should go a long way in providing me with a much better cheek weld. Something I have been whining about since I started this project.

 Much more to come soon.

 07/26/2016 One Stop Travel Plaza Newburg, Maryland. 

Just sitting waiting for the repair truck to come and fix the problem that was supposed to have been fixed last week.

Scopes and mounts.

 Not much has been going on in the 300 RUM world these last few weeks. I have been on the road only getting home on the Fourth of July weekend then doing some local, and overnight runs. 

 Arriving home last night Susan and I started preparing for our trip back to Ohio to see family and friends. But I am most excited about the fact that I will be having a muzzle break installed on the RUM. 

 Yes I have been told my priorities can sometimes be misguided.

 Now to the topic of the title, as stated earlier the cheek wield on this rifle using the S.S.A.L.T mount from SWFA is not working at all. This is affecting my ability to maintain a solid follow through hold during recoil.

 A low mount will be installed later this week after the metal work is finished. And as of this morning the rifle is at the shop waiting to be started on.

As of this morning A set of Weaver 30mm rings have been added and the metal work should be starting. Hopefuly I will be able to get some video of the mill work. 

  More shortly.

 

First Shot’s.

De Pain.            De Pain.

After getting everything put together and ready to go I hit the range. The first chore was to get the scope adjusted. I set up at the 25 yard position and fired a total of 3 rounds. The impact point was center target, but about 4 inches high. 

 This normally would not be an issue with most .308 Winchester loads as the impact point on the paper targets I normally use would still be in the black center of the scoring rings. Not so using  a round that is moving at about 800-900 fps faster. 

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27”x 27” target.

 After firing 2 rounds I was not able to find the impact holes. So I moved down to the bottom sticky target dot. The point of impact was 19 inches high.Meaning the first shots were traveling over top of the target.  The reason for this was both the canted 20 MOA Weaver scope mount base, and the height of the scope rings, causing the impact point to be so high.

 This was a simple fix with the adjustment of the scope bringing the impacts into the center right portion of the target.

 Fatigue, heat, and the recoil from shooting a hard hitting caliber from the bench became an issue. So much so that after a couple of hours, and 20 rounds I was done. But not until my last two shots were all but touching, and inside of the 2 inch sticky target.

 More to come.