February 15th, 2018

Quarter-MOA, Half-MOA? How Much Precision Is Really Enough?

Jim See Elite Accuracy
This impressive 15-round group was shot by Jim See of Elite Accuracy.

Different shooting disciplines demand different levels of precision/accuracy. In the rapid-fire 3-Gun game, you could probably “clean” most stages with a 2-MOA rifle. By contrast, in the short-range group benchrest game, to compete with the best, you’ll need a rifle that shoots in the “ones” (i.e. 0.1-0.19 MOA) in perfect conditions. In 1000-yard F-Class competition, the top shooters want a rifle that will hold one-third-MOA of vertical at that distance.

What is your standard of accuracy? How good is “good enough”. Jim See, a skilled gunsmith and successful PRS competitor, has answered that question for his tactical discipline. For the kind of matches Jim shoots, he likes to have a rifle that will hold half-MOA for five (5) shots, 3/4-MOA for 15 shots, and 1 MOA for twenty shots. Remarkably, Jim’s rifle can do that with factory ammo. Above is an impressive 15-shot group shot with .260 Remington Federal Premium Ammo.

Jim See Elite Accuracy

“I say it all the time, my loads need to print 5 under 1/2″, 10 under 3/4″, and 20 under 1″. It’s simple, if a hot barrel will keep 20 rounds fired in succession under my standard it will be a good barrel and load for Precision Match Shooting. Federal Premium Gold Metal Match .260 with Sierra bullets made the cut for me today. 15 consecutive shots under 3/4 MOA.” –Jim See

It’s said that you “can never have too much accuracy”, but there are acceptable standards for each discipline, and they’re not the same. A 100/200 yard Benchrest shooter will be sorely disappointed with a rifle/ammo set-up that can only deliver half-MOA. On the other hand, a PRS competitor like Jim See can achieve great success with a lesser degree of precision. This means you can save time and money. You can run your barrels longer between cleanings, and you don’t have to go “full OCD” when loading your ammo. The PRS shooter does not need to weigh-sort primers, or load powder to single-kernel standards. Proof is the performance. Jim See recently took third place at the Spearpoint Shootout, and he has been a podium finisher at other events. Learn more about Jim’s gunsmithing and training operations at EliteAccuracy.com.

Download This Load Development Target

Jim’s target seemed a bit familiar. AccurateShooter.com created this Diamond and Dot Target a few years back. On each aiming point, there are high-contrast black horizontal and vertical lines for aligning your cross-hairs. The gray circle lets you see the bullet impacts above, without obliterating the red diamond, which is quite useful for precise aiming (we put fine cross-hairs on the points of the diamond). This target sheet includes data entry tables below each of the three aim points. There are many other free targets out there, but this format is very popular. We’re pleased to see Jim using it. You can download this and dozens of other FREE Targets from the AccurateShooter.com Target Page.

AccurateShooter precision load development free target

Permalink Reloading 3 Comments »
February 12th, 2018

How to Properly Clean Your Reloading Dies

Hornady Die cleaning

After purchasing a new set of dies from Forster, Hornady, Redding, or Whidden Gunworks, you’ll want to disassemble the dies, inspect then, and then remove the internal grease and/or waxy coatings placed on the dies by the manufacturer. Here are two video that show how to de-grease and clean dies as they come “out of the box” from the manufacturer. In the first video, from Creedmoor Sports, Bill Gravatt shows various methods for cleaning dies both when new and after they have accumulated carbon and lube after use. This video is definitely worth watching. In the second video, a Hornady technician shows the method for degreasing dies before first use. A convenient aerosol spray cleaner is used in the video. You an also use a liquid solvent with soft nylon brush, and cotton patches. NOTE: After cleaning you may want to apply a light grease to the external threads of your dies.

Creedmoor Sports Die Cleaning Video with Bill Gravatt

Hornady Video Showing Aerosol Cleaner

Clean Your Sizing Dies and Body Dies Regularly
These same techniques work for cleaning dies after they have been used for reloading. Many otherwise smart hand-loaders forget to clean the inside of their dies, allowing old case lube, gunk, carbon residue, and other contaminants to build up inside the die. You should clean your dies fairly often, particularly if you do not tumble or ultrasound your cases between loadings. It is most important to keep full-length sizing and body dies clean. These dies accumulate lube and carbon residue quickly.

Permalink - Videos, Reloading 2 Comments »
February 10th, 2018

TIP: Polish Seating Stems to Eliminate Ring Marks on Bullets

Seating Stem Reloading Tip Sierra Bullet .223 Remington compressed loads

Here’s a helpful hint for hand-loaders from Sierra Bullets. While this article focuses on Sierra’s new Tipped Match-King bullets, the recommended solutions apply to other bullet types as well. The article explains how sharp edges on a seating stem can cause a ring to be pressed into the bullet jacket — especially with compressed loads that resist downward bullet movement. Here Sierra technician Rich Machholz diagnoses the problem and provides a solution.

Seating Stem Reloading Tip Sierra Bullet .223 Remington compressed loads

Solutions for Ring Marks Caused by Seating Stems

by Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Rich Machholz
Now that the new Tipped MatchKing® (TMK) bullets are being shipped and shooters are putting them to use I have received several calls regarding marking on the bullet ogive from the seating stem.

The cause can be traced to one of several things. In the .223 and especially with the long, 77 grain TMK seated at 2.250” or even 2.260” most loads of Varget® and Reloder® 15 are compressed loads, sometimes heavily compressed. This puts a great deal of pressure on the bullet through the seating stem. The result of all this pressure is a mark of varying depth and appearance on the ogive of the bullet. [Editor: We have seen this issue with a variety of other bullet types/shapes as well, including non-tipped VLDs. The solution is profiling the internal cone of the seating stem to match your bullet shape.]

Some older seating stems might even bear against the tip of the bullet which can make a slight bulge in the jacket just below the junction of the resin tip and the copper jacket in a compressed load. If this is the case there is not a ready fix other than calling the die manufacturer and requesting a new deeper seating stem.

Polish Your Seating Stem to Remove Sharp Internal Edges
If the seating stem is of proper depth the culprit most generally is a thin sharp edge on the inside taper of the seating stem. This is an easy fix that can be accomplished by chucking a spare 77 grain bullet in your drill, coating it with valve grinding compound or even rubbing compound or in a pinch even tooth paste.* Remove the seating stem assembly from the seating die. Turn the drill on and put the seating stem recess over the spinning bullet with the polishing compound to break or smooth the sharp edge that is making the offending mark. This might take more than one application to get the proper polish depending upon what you use, but the more you polish the better the blend of angles which will [ensure the stem matches the bullet contours, not leaving a sharp ring].

If the above is a little more than you care to tackle you might try very fine emery cloth twisted to a point that can be inserted into the mouth to the seating stem and rotated to polish the inside to eliminate any sharp edges that might be present.

Load Advice for 77gr TMKs in the .223 Rem
And last but certainly not least. Actually, even though we don’t say you need additional data for the TMKs, remember you are dealing with heavily-compressed loads in some cases because of the additional bullet length. Due to the additional length of these new bullets and in the interest of gaining some room in the case you might consider trying a slightly faster extruded powder like BenchMark or the 4895s or an even more dense powder like the spherical H335®, CFE223 or TAC. The extra room will allow for trouble free bullet seating also.

Good luck and remember we are no further away than your telephone: 1-800-223-8799.

Sierra Bullets Match-King Reloading Bullet Seating

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
February 8th, 2018

How Changes in Cartridge OAL Can Alter Pressure and Velocity

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridge

Figure 1. When the bullet is seated farther out of the case, there is more volume available for powder. This enables the cartridge to generate higher muzzle velocity with the same pressure.

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridgeEffects Of Cartridge Over All Length (COAL) And Cartridge Base To Ogive (CBTO) – Part 1
by Bryan Litz for Berger Bullets.
Many shooters are not aware of the dramatic effects that bullet seating depth can have on the pressure and velocity generated by a rifle cartridge. Cartridge Overall Length (COAL) is also a variable that can be used to fine-tune accuracy. It’s also an important consideration for rifles that need to feed rounds through a magazine. In this article, we’ll explore the various effects of COAL, and what choices a shooter can make to maximize the effectiveness of their hand loads.

Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute (SAAMI)
Most loading manuals (including the Berger Manual), present loading data according to SAAMI (Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute) standards. SAAMI provides max pressure, COAL and many other specifications for commercial cartridges so that rifle makers, ammo makers, and hand loaders can standardize their products so they all work together. As we’ll see later in this article, these SAAMI standards are in many cases outdated and can dramatically restrict the performance potential of a cartridge.

Bullet seating depth is an important variable in the accuracy equation. In many cases, the SAAMI-specified COAL is shorter than what a hand loader wants to load their rounds to for accuracy purposes. In the case where a hand loader seats the bullets longer than SAAMI specified COAL, there are some internal ballistic effects that take place which are important to understand.

Effects of Seating Depth / COAL on Pressure and Velocity
The primary effect of loading a cartridge long is that it leaves more internal volume inside the cartridge. This extra internal volume has a well known effect; for a given powder charge, there will be less pressure and less velocity produced because of the extra empty space. Another way to look at this is you have to use more powder to achieve the same pressure and velocity when the bullet is seated out long. In fact, the extra powder you can add to a cartridge with the bullet seated long will allow you to achieve greater velocity at the same pressure than a cartridge with a bullet seated short.

When you think about it, it makes good sense. After all, when you seat the bullet out longer and leave more internal case volume for powder, you’re effectively making the cartridge into a bigger cartridge by increasing the size of the combustion chamber. Figure 1 illustrates the extra volume that’s available for powder when the bullet is seated out long.

Before concluding that it’s a good idea to start seating your bullets longer than SAAMI spec length, there are a few things to consider.

Geometry of a Chamber Throat
The chamber in a rifle will have a certain throat length which will dictate how long a bullet can be loaded. The throat is the forward portion of the chamber that has no rifling. The portion of the bullet’s bearing surface that projects out of the case occupies the throat (see Figure 2).

Berger Bullets COAL length cartridge

The length of the throat determines how much of the bullet can stick out of the case. When a cartridge is chambered and the bullet encounters the beginning of the rifling, known as the lands, it’s met with hard resistance. This COAL marks the maximum length that a bullet can be seated. When a bullet is seated out to contact the lands, its initial forward motion during ignition is immediately resisted by an engraving force.

Seating a bullet against the lands causes pressures to be elevated noticeably higher than if the bullet were seated just a few thousandths of an inch off the lands.

A very common practice in precision reloading is to establish the COAL for a bullet that’s seated to touch the lands. This is a reference length that the hand loader works from when searching for the optimal seating depth for precision. Many times, the best seating depth is with the bullet touching or very near the lands. However, in some rifles, the best seating depth might be 0.100″ or more off the lands. This is simply a variable the hand loader uses to tune the precision of a rifle.

CLICK HERE to Read Full Article with More Info

Article sourced by EdLongrange. We welcome tips from readers.
Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 2 Comments »
February 7th, 2018

Stability Calculator — Determine Optimal Barrel Twist Rate

Berger twist rate calculator

With the Berger Southwest Nationals underway this week, we thought we’d steer our readers to a very useful resource, courtesy Berger Bullets. This online Stability Calculator helps shooters determine the optimal twist rate for their choice of projectiles.

Berger twist rate calculatorBerger Twist-Rate Stability Calculator
On the Berger Bullets website you’ll find a handy Twist-Rate Stability Calculator that predicts your gyroscopic stability factor (SG) based on mulitiple variables: velocity, bullet length, bullet weight, barrel twist rate, ambient temperature, and altitude. This cool tool tells you if your chosen bullet will really stabilize in your barrel.


How to Use Berger’s Twist Rate Calculator
Using the Twist Rate Calculator is simple. Just enter the bullet DIAMETER (e.g. .264), bullet WEIGHT (in grains), and bullet overall LENGTH (in inches). On its website, Berger conveniently provides this info for all its bullet types. For other brands, we suggest you weigh three examples of your chosen bullet, and also measure the length on three samples. Then use the average weight and length of the three. To calculate bullet stability, simply enter your bullet data (along with observed Muzzle Velocity, outside Temperature, and Altitude) and click “Calculate SG”. Try different twist rate numbers (and recalculate) until you get an SG value of 1.4 (or higher).

Gyroscopic Stability (SG) and Twist Rate
Berger’s Twist Rate Calculator provides a predicted stability value called “SG” (for “Gyroscopic Stability”). This indicates the Gyroscopic Stability applied to the bullet by spin. This number is derived from the basic equation: SG = (rigidity of the spinning mass)/(overturning aerodynamic torque).

Berger twist rate calculator

If you have an SG under 1.0, your bullet is predicted not to stabilize. If you have between 1.0 and 1.1 SG, your bullet may or may not stabilize. If you have an SG greater than 1.1, your bullet should stabilize under optimal conditions, but stabilization might not be adequate when temperature, altitude, or other variables are less-than-optimal. That’s why Berger normally recommends at least 1.5 SG to get out of the “Marginal Stability” zone.

In his book Applied Ballistics For Long-Range Shooting, Bryan Litz (Berger Ballistician) recommends at least a 1.4 SG rating when selecting a barrel twist for a particular bullet. This gives you a safety margin for shooting under various conditions, such as higher or lower altitudes or temperatures.

Story idea from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading No Comments »
February 5th, 2018

New Official Load Data for Latest High-BC Sierra MatchKings

Sierra MatchKing 2018 New bullets 95gr 150gr 200gr 230gr .223 Rem .308 Win

In recent months, Sierra has unveiled four very serious, ultra-high-BC MatchKing bullets in .224, .264 (6.5 mm), and .308 calibers. And just last week Sierra has released initial load data for these four new projectiles. CLICK HERE to get the latest official load data for these four new bullets.

High-BC MatchKings Tipped at Factory
Sierra recently released a new-for-2018, 95-grain .224 projectile, Sierra product #1396, with a claimed G1 BC of 0.600 — mighty impressive for a .22-caliber bullet. Next up is the new 6.5mm (.264 caliber) 150-grainer with an 0.713 G1 BC. This could be a game-changer for the 6.5-284 and new 6.5 PRC short magnum. There are also two new .308-caliber MatchKings, a 200-grainer with 0.715 G1 BC, and a new 230-grainer with a stunning 0.800 G1 BC. Many of these New Generation MatchKings now come “tipped” from the factory for more uniform BC.

Sierra Bullets has LOAD DATA for these four new bullets. If you handload for .223 Remington, 22-250, 6.5 x284 Norma, .308 Winchester, or .300 Winchester Magnum, check out this new reloading data.

» GET 2018 New Bullet DATA from Sierra in PDF format

.224 Cal 95gr HPBT MatchKing #1396
6.5mm 150gr HPBT MatchKing #1755
.308 Cal 200gr HPBT MatchKing #2231
.308 Cal 230gr HPBT MatchKing #2251

Sierra Bullets Load Data MatchKing .223 .224 6.5 mm .308 200gr 230gr
Sierra MatchKing 2018 New bullets 95gr 150gr 200gr 230gr .223 Rem .308 Win

Sierra MatchKing 2018 New bullets 95gr 150gr 200gr 230gr .223 Rem .308 Win

Sierra MatchKing 2018 New bullets 95gr 150gr 200gr 230gr .223 Rem .308 Win

Sierra MatchKing 2018 New bullets 95gr 150gr 200gr 230gr .223 Rem .308 Win

Sierra bullets header

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 4 Comments »
February 4th, 2018

Full-Length Sizing Die Fit — Diagnosing Stiff Bolt Lift Problems

Resizing Die Alex Wheeler Shoulder Bump Die fitting Full-Length

In this video, gunsmith Alex Wheeler explains how to ensure that your full-length sizing dies fit your brass properly. With many cartridge types, it’s not unusual for factory dies to be slightly large in the bottom section. When the diameter of a FL-sizing die is too large near the base, this can leave the bottom section of fired cases “unsized”, with the result that you can have extraction issues and stiff bolt lift, or what Alex calls “clickers”. At the same time, it’s not unusual for dies to over-size fired cases at the shoulder (i.e. reduce the shoulder diameter by .004″ or more).

We strongly recommend that all hand-loaders watch this video, particularly if you load cases 6+ times with relatively high-pressure loads.

Alex explains that a key dimension is the diameter of a fired case 0.200″ above the case head. If your die does not size your fired cases at this point, you should get a FL die that does. This could be a custom die ground to fit your chamber, or it could be a “small-base” die specifically designed to “hit” the bottom section of the case. Alex also notes that some FL dies have an inside chamfer at the mouth of the die, right at the very bottom. (See video at 3:55). This can leave the section of the case right above the extractor groove unsized, which can also lead to “clickers” and stiff bolt lift.

Paint Your Brass to Find Problem Areas
If you are having stiff bolt lift or extraction issues, Alex explains that you can “paint” your brass with magic marker (or dye-chem), and then place the case in your chamber. On the “hot spots” where the case contacts the chamber wall, the marking will rub off, allowing the brass metal to shine through in the problem area(s). This will illustrate where you need better sizing from your die.

“You can ink up the case with some magic marker or dye-chem. If you are getting clickers, go ahead and mark up the case and chamber it and see where it’s wearing. This will help you diagnose [whether the problem] is coming from the base, is it coming maybe from a score in the chamber… it can even happen at the shoulder although that’s pretty rare. Usually the dies size enough at that point.”

Did you find this video helpful? View more informative Tech Tip Videos on WheelerAccuracy.com.

Video Tip from Boyd Allen. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 2 Comments »
January 31st, 2018

Bullets Galore — Free Database with 3900 Bullet Profiles

ShooterForum Bullet Database

shootforum bullet databaseDid you know that there’s a free online resource that lists weight, length, SD, and Ballistic Coefficient for thousands of bullet designs. That’s right, the ShootForum Website offers profiles of nearly 3900 bullet types from all the major manufacturers. You can access all this info for free. This is a great place to start when you’re considering bullet options for a new rifle, or a new chambering for an existing rifle. You should definitely bookmarke this resource for for easy access in the future.

The massive ShootForum.com Bullet Database includes over 3900 bullet designs in all. We counted nearly 200 different 6mm bullets! The bullet info comes from the makers of QuickLOAD Software. Access to the online database is FREE. Most database entries include Caliber, Manufacturer, Stated Bullet Weight, True Bullet Weight, Length, Sectional Density (SD), and Ballistic Coefficient. In many cases multiple BCs are provided for different velocity ranges. Having bullet length lets you know right away if your cartridge/bullet combo can fit your magazine.

The coverage of the Bullet Database is amazing. Manufacturers in the database include: A-Square, Barnaul, Barnes, Berger, Brenneke, Calhoon, CDP, CheyTac, ColoradoBonded, CT, DAG, David Tubb, Delsing, DEWC, DKT, DTK, DYN, Federal, Fiocchi, FMJ, FN, Fortek, FP, Freedom, Frontier, GECO, Gian-Marchet, GPA, GS-Custom, H&N, Hawk, HeviShot, Hirtenberger, Hornady, HP, Igman, IMI, IMI-Samson, Impala, JDJ, JLK, Klimovsk, Lapua, LEADEx, LEE, Lehigh, LIMA, LostRiver, LYM, MEN, Mil, Norinco, Norma, NorthFork, Nosler, PMC, PMP, Powell, PrviPartizan, Rainier, RCBS, Reichenberg, Remington, RN, RNFP, RUAG, RWS, Sako, Sellier-Bellot, Shilen, Sierra, Sinterfire, Speer, Stoklossa, SWC, Swift, Swiss, The Gun Haus, TMJ, WestCoast, Winchester, WM-Bullets and Woodleigh.

CLICK HERE to Access ShootForum Bullet Database »

The database is great if you’re looking for an unusual caliber, or you want a non-standard bullet diameter to fit a barrel that is tighter or looser than spec. You’ll find the popular jacketed bullets from major makers, plus solids, plated bullets, and even cast bullets. For those who don’t already own QuickLOAD software, this is a great resource, providing access to a wealth of bullet information.

ShooterForum Bullet Database

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 1 Comment »
January 30th, 2018

Seven Smart Ways to Use Old Film Canisters

35mm film cannister tip bushings patches

While nearly everybody now favors digital photography over “old-fashioned” 35mm film, don’t toss those old 35mm film canisters, especially the clear Fuji-type with secure snap-in lids. Small plastic film canisters have a multitude of uses for the shooter and reloader.

Here Are Things You Can Do with Plastic Film Canisters:

1. Hold thrown powder charges. If you weigh powder charges after throwing them with a manual powder dispenser, throw the charges first into a film canister and then use that to drop the powder into the measuring pan on your scale. The canister will catch every kernel of powder. If you throw charges directly into a weighing pan, powder can sometimes bounce out. Using the film canister will help keep spilled powder off your loading bench and floor.

2. Store extra sets of foam ear-plugs in the canister. You never want to be without ear protection. This editor has four film canisters filled with plugs. Two go in the range kit, one goes in the car’s glove compartment, and a second stays in a lock box I use to transport pistols. This way I never find myself at the range without ear protection.

3. Place smaller cotton patches in film canisters, marked by caliber. If you use the water-tight Fuji-style canisters, you can even pre-soak the patches with solvent. You can have one canister for wet patches, another for dry patches. That saves time when you’re at the range, and avoids spillage. One caution–some solvents may react with plastic, so test this first before you put a solvent-filled canister in your range kit.

35mm film canister shooting gear rifle kit

4. Store your neck bushings, sorted by caliber in film canisters. With a permanent marking pen, you can mark the side or top of the canister with the bushing sizes, or caliber.

5. Store your favorite Bolt Grease (for rifles) or anti-seize compound (good for pistol slide rails), in the canister. You don’t need to fill it all the way up — a little dab will do ya. We only recommend this with the snap-top Fuji canisters.

6. Protect your muzzles with canisters, during transport. When shipping a rifle or barrel, slip the film canister over the muzzle, then secure it with electrical tape. This will protect the precious crown of a match barrel from dings or damage.

7. Protect front sights with linked film canisters. Forum member SPClark explains: “I’ve seen several shooters use film canisters to make up front match sight protection. Use some elastic cord between two canisters… that’s easy to remove once you get to the line.”

TELL US Your Tips!

There are countless other uses for 35mm film canisters. We invite readers to respond with their own tips on using these handy containers. If you don’t have some stashed in your workshop already, you can get empties for free at most film processing centers. The clear plastic Fuji canisters are the best — you can see what’s inside and the lids are watertight.

Permalink Reloading, Tech Tip 4 Comments »
January 28th, 2018

How To Choose the Right Bushing for Your Neck-Sizing Die

Redding neck die bushing size reloading tech tip Pat Ryan video

One of the most commonly-asked questions on our Shooters Forum is “what diameter bushing should I use with my neck-sizing die?” While we recommend that users obtain at least two bushings, you still have to know where to start. For hunting ammo and gas guns, we still recommend choosing a bushing that is 2 or 3 thousandths smaller than the neck diameter of a loaded round. However, in a bolt-action benchrest gun, you may well get superior accuracy with less neck tension. A while back Larry Isenhour set a spectacular 50-5X, 600-yard IBS record using very light tension — Larry employed a .268″ bushing for a .2695″ loaded round.

How to Select the Right Neck Bushing for your Cartridge Brass:

A while back, we discussed neck bushings during a visit to the Redding Reloading booth at the NRA Annual Meeting. In the video above, Patrick Ryan of Redding explains how to measure your cartridge brass and select the proper bushing diameter. Please note that Redding has changed its recommendations for benchrest neck sizing in recent years. Redding now recommends that benchresters start with a bushing that yields slightly less grip on the bullet.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 4 Comments »
January 25th, 2018

SHOT Show 2018 — Day Two Highlights with Cool New Products

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas
The most eye-catching display at SHOT Show 2018 was a 3D Hologram animation of the new SAR 9 pistol. Showing the pistol assembling itself in mid-air, the hologram was mesmerizing.

So many products — so little time. We saw some very interesting new products including new Berger Ammunition on our second day at SHOT Show. There were many interesting tools on displays as well as cool new rifles for hunters, varminters, long-range shooters, and tactical marksmen. We also met some old friends on Day Two, including the legend himself — Jerry Miculek.

To give you a feel for SHOT Show, here’s a nice teaser video filmed last year. This shows both Media Day and the events inside the Sands Convention Center. Though this is a year old, we definitely recommend it. Plus is has a LOT of pretty ladies. You won’t be disappointed — honest.

This Video is from 2017, But You Should Definitely Watch It — Lots of Pretty Ladies!

NEW — Berger Branded Ammunition in Lapua Brass

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Berger Bullets + Lapua Brass in factory-loaded ammo. You asked for it. Now it’s here. The new line of Berger Ammunition was unveiled at SHOT Show this week at the Capstone Precision Group booth. Berger, Lapua, Vihtavuori, and SK Ammo are now all owned by Nammo Lapua, so we can have these great American-made bullets packaged with superior, European-made Lapua brass*. This is an exciting development. There will be three (3) lines of Berger Ammunition: Match Grade Target, Match Grade Hunting, and Match Grade Tactical. We’ll have a full report with field tests this spring.

NEW and IMPROVED — Lyman Higher Rez Borecam

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Better. Sharper. Higher Resolution. The new, upgraded Lyman Borecam® Digital Borescope is a serious candidate for best gunroom tool of the year. We really liked the original Borecam and recommended it highly. But now the new version is a LOT better. Now offering 300k resolution, you can really see finer details inside your bore. Trust us — the difference is VERY Noticeable. We could see very fine detail as never before. We like the fact that the lens wand is marked like a ruler so you can see your insertion depth and the handle has an indexing mark so you can keep track of your rotation. Great product. NOTE: The 300K means the camera delivers 300,000 pixels, i.e. 0.3 megapixel. For a square this is about 550×550. For a standard aspect ratio, this is similar to 640×480 resolution.

NEW — Walther KK500 .22 LR 3P Competition Rifle

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Walther unveiled a handsome new smallbore (.22 LR) competition rifle, the KK500. This is more compact, with a shorter length of pull, so it’s a great choice for smaller-framed competitors — women and junior. The new Walther KK500 position rifle features bold red/gray laminated grip and fore-end block, plus an eye-catching red bolt handle. Very nice rimfire rifle for serious 3P smallbore shooters.

NEW — RCBS 6-Station Brass Boss

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

We tried out the new Brass Boss from RCBS. This new machine features SIX (6) powered tool heads, plus brushes. Four of the tool heads run at variable speeds up to 350 rpm. Two other high-speed tool heads run up to 550 RPM. There is a convenient speed control knob on the side of the unit. This is a great feature — you can run at high RPM for hard jobs like removing military primer crimps, and then slow way down to do more precise tasks such as inside chamfering. We like the Brass Boss. It is a definite upgrade over the previous RCBS Trim-Mate. The new Brass Boss includes tools for all six stations: inside VLD chamfering tool, outside deburring tool, primer pocket cleaners (small/large), military crimp removers (small/large), primer pocket uniformers (small/large), case neck brushes (four diameters), and a tub of dry case neck lubricant. MSRP for the Brass Boss is $189.95. We expect “street price” to be around $155.00.

COOL — World’s Biggest Cutaway Cartridge?

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

At the Vista Outdoor booth, we saw a 4-foot tall replica rifle cartridge. This was a real eye-catcher. Many folks looking at the giant-sized mock cartridge had never seen a 3-D cutaway like this showing the construction of the primer along with the core and jacket of the bullet. Note to Vista Outdoor — Please send one of these jumbo cutaways for our AccurateShooter.com “Man-Cave”.

WILD — $18,000 Janz Plasma Finish Revolver

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Holy Mother of Mercy. This stunning Janz pistol costs $18,000. You can buy an entry-level Honda Civic for that! But does that Honda have a rainbow-colored Plasma finish like the Janz? And can the Civic swap barrel and cylinder assemblies to shoot multiple calibers? These top-of-the line Janz wheelguns are crafted in Germany in very small numbers. Just remember, beauty doesn’t come cheap.

NEW — Leica HD-B 3000 Geovid Rangefinder Binoculars

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

When we looked through the new HD-B 3000 Leica Geovids we were stunned. Superb clarity and sharpness. And the laser ranging was instantaneous — amazingly fast. The new Geovid HD-B 3000 delivers linear distance determination up to 3,000 yards (2,750 meters). This combo binocular/LRF has an ABC® ballistic brain inside which can output holdover, click adjustment, and equivalent horizontal range (EHR). Barometric pressure, temperature and angle are also included in the measurements. Impressive.

FUN — Selfie Time with Jerry Miculek — The Man, the Legend

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Where else but SHOT Show in Las Vegas can you get a selfie with the world’s greatest revolver shooter, the legendary Jerry Miculek. Jerry was signing autographs at the Hornady booth. Of course Jerry’s not just a wheelgun ace. He has been a top 3-Gun competitor and, at last year’s 2017 Industry Day at the Range, Jerry set a world rifle speed record shooting a S&W M&P15.

NEW — Lyman Brass Smith C-Frame Press

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Lyman has three new cast-iron presses on display: an O-Frame Single Stage, and 8-station Turret, and this compact Brass Smith C-Frame Ideal open front press. We liked them all but we think this new C-Frame press is an exceptional value. With beefy cast-iron construction, it is much stiffer than other presses in this category. The compound linkage is smooth. The base is big enough to provide good stability. For someone looking for a second press, or a smaller press to take to the range, the new Lyman may be the right solution. Thumbs up.

WEIRD — Virtual Reality Self-Defense Simulator

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

At the NRA Booth, CarryGuard, the NRA’s insurance program, had a half-dozen high-tech Virtual Reality simulators. Visitors could put on a pair of VR goggles, and then experience a variety of threat scenarios. This helps gun owners recognize true threats and respond in a proper manner. We like the cool Virtual Reality technology, but it still seemed weird to see grown men wearing goofy VR headgear and waving their arms around like circus clowns.

BAD ASS — Victrix Heavy Metal Tactical Rifles

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Victrix is an Italian rifle-maker that shows that has proven that the USA doesn’t have a monopoly on seriously “Bad Ass” weaponry. We saw a trio of Victrix Minerva Tactical rifles that look tough enough to survive the Zombie Apocalypse with ease. The Minerva’s beefy carry handle under the fore-end is an interesting feature — something similar might come in handy for big ELR rigs.

SMART — Burris Spotting Scope with Accessory Red Dot

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

Can you see an extra feature fitted to this Burris Signature HD Spotting Scope. Yep, that’s a Burris Red Dot Sight on the left side near the eyepiece. Smart idea — this helps you align the spotter quickly, particularly in low-light situations. After seeing this rig, we’re wondering how we might attach a red dot to our older spotting scopes. Hats off to Burris for this clever optics upgrade.

NEW and TEMPTING — Tikka T1x Rifle in .17 HMR

Shot Show Day 2 Two Las Vegas

When we first revealed the impressive new Tikka T1x rimfire rifle in .22 LR, some readers said: “Well the .22 LR version is nice but will it be available in .17 HMR? That’s what I really want”. Well ladies and gentlemen, Tikka WILL sell a 17 HMR version of the T1x (see above). We saw this on display at SHOT Show and smiled. This gun has a very nice trigger, smooth running bolt, and the magazine is easy to seat (unlike some other recent rimfire rigs). Fitted with a nice 3-18X scope and bipod, this could be a great carry-around varmint rifle. We hope to test one this spring.

* NOTE: With some cartridge types for which Lapua brass is not currently made, other brands of brass may be used. However, most Berger Ammunition will feature Lapua brass.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, News, Optics, Reloading 1 Comment »
January 25th, 2018

Primer Performance — Technical Insights by CCI Expert

Primer Priming Tool Magnum primers foil anvil primer construction reloading powder CCI
Winchester Pistol Primers on bench. Photo courtesy UltimateReloader.com.

There is an excellent article about primers on the Shooting Times website. We strongly recommend you read Mysteries And Misconceptions Of The All-Important Primer, written by Allan Jones. Mr. Jones is a bona fide expert — he served as the manager of technical publications for CCI Ammunition and Speer Bullets and Jones authored three editions of the Speer Reloading Manual.

» READ Full Primer “Mysteries and Misconceptions” Article

This authoritative Shooting Times article explains the fine points of primer design and construction. Jones also reveals some little-known facts about primers and he corrects common misconceptions. Here are some highlights from the article:

Primer Priming Tool Magnum primers foil anvil primer construction reloading powder CCISize Matters
Useful Trivia — even though Small Rifle and Small Pistol primer pockets share the same depth specification, Large Rifle and Large Pistol primers do not. The standard pocket for a Large Pistol primer is somewhat shallower than its Large Rifle counterpart, specifically, 0.008 to 0.009 inch less.

Magnum Primers
There are two ways to make a Magnum primer — either use more of the standard chemical mix to provide a longer-burning flame or change the mix to one with more aggressive burn characteristics. Prior to 1989, CCI used the first option in Magnum Rifle primers. After that, we switched to a mix optimized for spherical propellants that produced a 24% increase in flame temperature and a 16% boost in gas volume.

Foiled Again
Most component primers have a little disk of paper between the anvil and the priming mix. It is called “foil paper” not because it’s made of foil but because it replaces the true metal foil used to seal early percussion caps. The reason this little disk exists is strictly a manufacturing convenience. Wet primer pellets are smaller than the inside diameter of the cup when inserted and must be compacted to achieve their proper diameter and height. Without the foil paper, the wet mix would stick to the compaction pins and jam up the assembly process.

Read Full Primer Story on ShootingTimes.com:

Here are two videos that offer some good, basic information on primers:

Permalink - Videos, Reloading, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
January 24th, 2018

Eyeball Your Brass — How to Diagnose Flawed Cases

Case Diagnostics 101 Sierra Bullets .223 Rem 5.56 brass cartridge safety

Ever wondered what caused a particular bulge or marking on a case? And more importantly, does the issue make the case unsafe for further use? Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Duane Siercks offers some insight into various issues and their causes in this article from the Sierra Blog.

Incipient Case-Head Separation
This is a Winchester .308 Win case that has a real issue. This case has a very obvious incipient case head separation in the process of becoming a complete failure.

Sierra Case reloading pressure safety inspection

This is most commonly caused by over-sizing the case causing there to be excess headspace on the case. After a few firings and subsequent re-sizing, this case is just about ready to come completely apart. Proper die adjustment is certainly a requirement here. Of course this case is not safe to reuse.

Excessive Pressure (Load Too Hot)
If you will notice in the picture of the case rim, there are two pressure signs to notice. First, look at the primer. It is basically flattened to about the max of what could be considered safe. If this was the only pressure sign noted, I would probably be fine with this load, but would constantly keep an eye on it especially if I was going to use this load in warmer temperatures. This load could easily cross into the “excess pressure” realm very quickly.

Sierra Case reloading pressure safety inspection

There is another sign of pressure that we cannot ignore. If you’ll notice, there is an ejector mark apparent that is located over the “R” of the R-P headstamp. This absolutely tells us that this load would not have been in the safe pressure range. If there were any of these rounds loaded, they should not be fired and should be dis-assembled. This case should not be reloaded.

Split Case-Neck
Here we have an R-P .22-250 case that has died the death. Everything looks fine with this case except the neck is split. This case must be tossed.

Sierra Case reloading pressure safety inspection

A split neck is a normal occurrence that you must watch for. It is caused by work-hardening of the brass. Brass cases get harder with age and use. Brand new cases that are stored for a period of time can become hard enough that they will split like this case within one to two firings. I have had new factory loads do the same thing. Then as we resize and fire these cases repeatedly, they tend to get harder and harder. Eventually they will split. The life of the case can be extended by careful annealing practices. This is an issue that would need to be addressed in an article by itself. Of course this case is no longer usable.

In the classes that I teach, I try to use examples like this to let the students see what they should be looking for. As always, if we can assist you, whether you are new to reloading or very experienced, contact us here at Sierra Bullets by phone at 1-800-223-8799 or by email at sierra@sierrabullets.com.

Dented Case Body
Here we have a Lake City 7.62×51 (.308 Win.) case with two heavy marks/dents in the case body.

Sierra Case reloading pressure safety inspection

This one may be a bit of a mystery. It appears as if this case may have been caught in the action of a semi-auto rifle when the firearm jammed or the case failed to clear during the cycling process. I probably would not reload this case just to prevent any feeding problems. This also appeared to be a factory loaded round and I don’t really see any pressure issues or damage to the case.

CLICK HERE for MORE .223 Rem Case Examples in Sierra Blog

It is very important to observe and inspect your cases before each reloading. After awhile it becomes second nature to notice the little things. Never get complacent as you become more familiar with the reloading process. If ever in doubt, call Sierra’s Techs at 1-800-223-8799.

Sierra Bullets Case Diagnostics Blog

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip No Comments »
January 24th, 2018

Tool Time: Sinclair Cartridge Case Neck Sorting Tool

Case Neck thickness sorting gauge Sinclair accurateshooter.com

He who dies with the most toys wins — right? Well Sinclair has another interesting gadget you can add to your reloading bench. The Sinclair Case Neck Sorting Tool lets you quickly sort brass by neck-wall thickness. For those who shoot “no-turn” brass, this can improve neck-tension consistency. Large variances in neck-wall thickness can cause inconsistent neck “grip” on the bullet. Generally, we’ve found that more consistent neck tension will lower ES and (usually) improve accuracy. We know some guys who shoot no-turn 6mmBR brass in competition with considerable success — but their secret is pre-sorting their brass by neck-wall thickness. Cases that are out-of-spec are set aside for sighters (or are later skim-turned).

Watch Case Neck Sorting Tool Operation in Video

Case Neck thickness sorting gauge Sinclair accurateshooterHow the Case Neck Sorting Tool Works
Here’s how the Sinclair tool works. Cases are rotated under an indicator tip while they are supported on a case-neck pilot and a support pin through the flash hole. The unit has a nice, wide base and low profile so it is stable in use. The tool works for .22 through .45 caliber cases and can be used on .17- and .20-caliber cases with the optional carbide alignment rod. The MIC-4 pin fits both .060 (PPC size) and .080 (standard size) flash holes. Sinclair’s Case Neck Sorting Tool can be ordered with or without a dial indicator. The basic unit without dial indicator (item 749-006-612WB) is $59.99. The tool complete with dial indicator (item 749-007-129WB) for $89.99. IMPORTANT: This tool requires caliber-specific Sinclair Case Neck Pilots which must be ordered separately.

Editor’s Comment: The purpose of this Sinclair tool is rapid, high-quantity sorting of cartridge brass to ascertain significant case-neck-wall thickness variations. Consider this a rapid culling/sorting tool. If you are turning your necks, you will still need a quality ball micrometer tool to measure neck-wall thickness (to .0005) before and after neck-turning operations.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Reloading No Comments »
January 23rd, 2018

Download Latest Hodgdon IMR Relative Burn Rate Chart

Hodgdon IMR Winchester Burn Rate Powder speed table relative table chart

Hey guys, you’ll probably want to download this new Powder Burn Rate Chart issued by Hodgdon/IMR. This recently-released table includes the latest IMR powders including the Enduron series (IMR 4166, 4451, 4955, 7977), shown in green below. Please note, the chart is not limited to Hodgdon and IMR propellants. It also includes popular powders from Accurate, Alliant, Norma, Ramshot (Western), Vihtavuori, and Winchester.

This chart provides useful information for all hand-loaders. When doing load development, and testing one powder versus another, it’s generally wise to choose propellants that share the same relative burn rate, as least for starters. NOTE: Hodgdon powders are shown in blue, while IMR standard powders are shown in yellow, and Winchester powder are shown in red. DOWNLOAD Chart HERE.


Hodgdon IMR Winchester Burn Rate Powder speed table relative table chart

CLICK HERE to Download Chart as PDF File »

Story find by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
January 23rd, 2018

Lyman Releases Long Range Precision Rifle Reloading Handbook

Lyman Precision Reloading Manual 6.5 Creemoor PRS Long Range

Lyman Products is offering a new reloading resource, the Lyman “Long Range Precision Rifle Reloading Handbook”. With the growing interest in Precision Rifle Series (PRS) events and Extended Long Range matches, Lyman saw the need for an up-to-date, reliable print resource for precision long range competitors. Lyman says this is “The first-ever reloading manual specifically written for the growing sport of precision long range shooting.”

Lyman’s new book covers the most popular cartridge types, and the premium components used by top shooters. The book covers the vast majority of popular cartridge types used in long range precision shooting. You’ll find .223 Rem, 6mm Dasher, 6×47 Lapua, 6XC, 6mm Creedmoor, .243 Win, 6.5×47 Lapua, 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Rem., 6.5-284 Norma, .308 Win, .300 Win Mag, .300 Norma Mag, .338 Lapua Mag and more. The data section includes Berger and Lapua target bullets, as well as Sierra MatchKings and Hornady ELDs. A wide range of propellants from Accurate, Alliant, Hodgdon, IMR, Norma, VihtaVuori, Ramshot, and Winchester are reviewed.

Lyman Handbook Includes Articles by Leading Experts and Top PRS Shooters
The new handbook also includes articles by top PRS shooters and industry experts. Articles such as “PRS How-To” and “Rifle Systems for PRS” by Matt Gervais provide expert info and tips and techniques to start competing. An authoritative article by Hornady’s Dave Emary, “The History and Design of the 6.5 and 6mm Creedmoor” explains why these cartridges have become so popular for PRS and other applications. Emary’s “Reloading Considerations for Long Range Ammunition” is also highly recommended for both novice and experienced hand-loaders.

“As the leader in reloading data, we saw a need for an accurate and reliable source of reloading data for these precision, long-range loads,” said Trevor Mullen, Lyman’s Global Marketing VP. “Our process of compiling a new reloading handbook … is to work with the best in their field — reloaders, the manufacturers of ammunition and rifles, participants in the PRS sport, and our own staff of highly-skilled, highly knowledgeable test shooters. This new handbook [will help] those looking for that edge in PRS competitions.”

The “Long Range Precision Rifle Reloading Handbook”, priced at $16.98, will be available soon from online retailers. Within a short time you can also purchase the book from the Lyman web store. (It is not yet in stock).

Permalink Competition, Reloading No Comments »
January 22nd, 2018

Bargain Finder 122: SHOT Show Edition New Products

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

SHOT SHOW Edition: For this week, we are doing something a bit different. Rather than showcasing discounted Deals of the Week, for this Monday, we’re featuring new-for-2018 products that will be on display at SHOT Show in Las Vegas. We have selected new products that, we believe, offer excellent inherent value even without special discounts. You may not be able to purchase all these items right away, but expect them at major vendors by early spring.

1. Lapua .300 Norma Magnum and .338 Norma Magnum Brass

Lapua Norma 300 338 Magnum cartridge brass

A recent development based on the .338 Norma Magnum necked down to .30 caliber, the .300 Norma Magnum was adopted as the U.S. Military’s Advanced Sniper Cartridge “for extra long ranges beyond 1500 meters”. In addition to its military duties, the 300 Norma is sure to find favor with Long Range competitive shooters and hunters. We are excited to see this impressive new offering added to Lapua’s line of outstanding cartridge brass. Along with the .300 Norma, Lapua will also produce the .338 Norma Magnum parent cartridge. That .338 NM was developed by J. Sloan and D. Kiff as a long-range sporting cartridge, based on the .416 Rigby case. Norma adopted and standardized the .338 Norma Magnum through CIP certification in 2010.

2. New T1x Rimfire Rifle from Tikka

Tikka T1X .22 LR rimfire 17 HMR

Tikka is introducing a new Rimfire rifle, the Tikka T1x. It features a medium-contour 20″ barrel with threaded muzzle, 10-round detachable magazine, and a smooth bolt throw. This will be offered in Both .22 LR and .17 HMR. The rifle boasts the feel and balance of Tikka’s centerfire line, so this can serve as a nice small-bore option for fans of Tikka hunting rifles. MSRP for the T1X is $499.00. There has been considerable shooter interest in this new Tikka which should provide competition to the CZ line of European rimfire rifles. The pricing is more than a Ruger or Savage, but much less than an Anschutz.

3. New Savage 110 Models with Adjustable Stocks

Savage AccuStock AccuFit Adjustable stock internal Chassis

For 2018, Savage’s model 110 line-up boasts higher-quality, user-adjustable stocks. The all-new AccuFit system allows shooters to customize length of pull and comb height. The new AccuStock features a rigid chassis embedded in the stock. Savage has a full line of revamped 110s with these enhanced stocks. For example, the Savage 110 Long Range Hunter shown here features a 26″ barrel with brake, and is offered in six calibers: 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Rem, .308 Win, 300 WSM, and .338 Federal.

4. Starline 6mm and 6.5mm Creedmoor Rifle Brass, $50/100

Starline Grendel Creedmoor 6mm 6.5 mm brass

Starline Brass has recently added the 6.5/6mm family of cartridges to the company’s growing line of rifle cases. Starline is now producing 6.5 Creedmoor in both Large Primer pocket and Small Primer pocket versions. It also offers 6mm Creedmoor, and 6.5 Grendel. This brass will be pretty affordable, starting out at $125 for 250 cases (that works out to just $50 per hundred). Starline already sells other popular rifle brass, including .223 Rem, .243 Win, .260 Rem, and .308 Win. While this Starline brass won’t rival Lapua Brass, it may be suitable for tactical competitors who must run stages where it is impractical to recover your brass.

5. Lyman All-American 8-Stage Turret Press, $199.99

Lyman 8-stage Turret Press

Lyman is releasing a beefy All-American Turret Press with eight (8) stations. That’s one more than the Redding T-7 Turret Press, and two more stations than the six-station RCBS Turret Press. With the Lyman’s EIGHT stations you can hold sizing AND seating dies for four different rifle cartridges. With eight stations available — there are countless options. Rigidity is very important with a turret press — if you have too much “give” of flex with the turret head you may get inconsistent results when bumping shoulders using full-length dies. With a heavy cast-iron frame and turret head, Lyman says its new Turret Press is “the most rugged” on the market. We like the front-mount priming system which can easily be operated with your free hand, whether you mount the press arm on the left or the right. You can purchase this press for $199.99 from MidwayUSA.

6. Ruger — Ruger Precision Rimfire, $399.99

The Ruger Precision Rimfire .22 LR rifle is so new that few vendors have them yet. But you CAN pre-order one now for $399.99 from Sportsmans Outdoor Superstore (MSRP: $529.00). For PRS shooters and Ruger Precision Rifle owners, this may be an ideal rimfire cross-trainer, with ergonomics and balance like their centerfire rig. This PRS-style .22 LR rig has some very interesting features, including adjustable bolt throw that lets shooters change from a rimfire 1.5″ bolt throw to a short-action centerfire 3″ bolt throw, reducing the chance of short-stroking your bolt in competition. The Ruger Marksman trigger adjusts from 2.25 to 5.0 pounds.

7. Vortex — New Affordable Viper HD Spotting Scopes

High-end performance at a mid-range price — the new-for-2018 Vortex Viper® HD Spotting Scopes offer impressive clarity, resolution, and color fidelity at an affordable price. The new 20-60x85mm model has a $1099.99 MSRP. That’s half the price of some other top-quality spotting scopes. The 15-45x65mm models have an $849.99 MSRP. These spotters feature HD lenses and helical-style focus. For conventience, the attachment collar allows the entire spotter to rotate. Designed for durability, the Viper HD spotter is has rubber armor, and exterior lenses are protected by ArmorTek — an ultra-hard, scratch-resistant compound that repels oil, dirt, and fingerprints. Both sizes are offered in straight and angled versions. And like all Vortex products, the Viper HD Spotting Scopes are covered by a lifetime, unconditional, no-fault, transferable, VIP Warranty.

8. MTM Cleaning Rod Case, $25.00 Street Price

MTM Cleaning Rod Case

Here’s a cool new product that will make it easier to stow and/or transport your precious cleaning rods. Sure you can tuck a single rod in a gun case, but what if you want to carry a variety of rods to the range? This case holds up to four (4) rods securely, and keeps solvent residues off your fine firearms. MTM’s new Gun Cleaning Rod Case is capable of storing four rifle or shotgun cleaning rods up to 47″ long. Each rod is held in an individual slot and there are foam inserts on either end, making transportation secure and rattle-free. You don’t have to worry about the rods banging into each other. We like the fact that MTM has cleverly included multi-sized “corrals” to hold patches from large to small. Plus there is plenty of room to hold jags and brushes.

9. Mossberg MVP Precision in 6.5 Creedmoor and .308 Win

Mossberg MVP Precision

The Mossberg MVP Precision looks good. It has all-new chassis with a longer fore-end up front and a fully-adjustable LUTH-AR MBA-3 stock in the back. Every rifle comes with an LBA trigger, and 20″ or 24″ threaded and free-floated medium bull barrels are standard. The action features an oversize bolt handle with a Picatinny rail on top. Available chamberings include the 6.5 Creedmoor (no surprise) and 7.62×51 (.308 Win). Mossberg will also offer combo packages fitted with Vortex Viper HS-T riflescope. Mossberg has not announced an MSRP for the new MVP Precision. However, we expect this new rifle to have a street price around $1300.00, competitive with the Ruger Precision Rifle.

10. ScopeSlicker WeatherProof Scope Cover, $24.99 MSRP

ScopeSlicker NX scope protector

ScopeSlicker NX is a weather-resistant scope cover that includes two built-in lens cloths. This smartly-designed socpe protector features two retaining bands that keep it on the scope, while providing quick access by flipping each end up to view through the scope. ScopeSlicker NX is made from premium neoprene for abrasion and impact protection. The slim-fitting neoprene cover is available in a variety of hi-resolution patterns, and fits a wide range of common scope sizes.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading No Comments »
January 22nd, 2018

Get FREE Reloading Data Sheets and Ammo Box Label Templates

Reloading Data Form Ammo Box Template printing labels chronograph data sheet

Redding Reloading offers handy Handloader’s Data Sheets in printable PDF format. This FREE form allows hand-loaders to document their tool settings, bushing size, powder charge, load specs (COAL etc.), and case prep status. In addition, the form allows you to enter your load testing information, complete with chronograph data, group size, zero range, and wind/temp conditions. With this single, handy form you can document all the vital information for your particular cartridges and loads. We suggest you print these out, 3-hole-punch ‘em, and then keep them in a three-ring binder.

Download FREE Handloader’s Data Sheet (PDF)

We’ve seen various reloading log templates, but this Redding form (shown below) is better than most because it combines both reloading data AND range-test data in one place. You can see all key details of the reloading process (tool settings etc.) plus the end results — how the load actually performed over the chronograph and on paper. This form allows the user to capture a large amount of information for later use, while accurately track load development. Go to Download Page.

Reloading Data Form Ammo Box Template printing labels chronograph data sheet

FREE Ammunition Box Label Template
Reloading Data Form Ammo Box Template printing labels chronograph data sheetRedding Reloading has also developed a printable template for your ammo boxes (see photo at top of article). This lets you put all vital load info on your ammo boxes. There are fields for: Date, Cartridge, Powder, Grains, Bullet, Weight, Primer, Case type. Designed for Avery 5260 (or similar) label sheets, this template allows you to print 30 labels at one time. You can purchase the Avery 5260 peel-off printable label sheets at any office supply store.

Download Box Label Template (PDF)

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading No Comments »
January 21st, 2018

Pulling Bullets Safely and Efficiently with a Collet Puller

Hornady cam-lock bullet puller ammunition UlimateReloader

When you make a reloading mistake, you may need to “pull down” assembled ammo. The embedded UltimateReloader.com video demonstrates how to use the Hornady Cam-Lock bullet pulling system.

When Reloading Goes Bad — The Danger of Over-Charging
Our friend Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com was recently reloading some 9mm pistol ammo with his Hornady progressive press. As part of his reloading procedure, he visually checks the cases — and he noticed that the charges seemed high. Sure enough, his most recently-produced rounds were about two grains over spec. He diagnosed the issue: “I was using a powder measure without a baffle. What happened was, over the course of the loading session, things settled in, and the charge level increased.”

Not knowing just when his powder measure started delivering too much powder, Gavin decided, for safety’s sake, to pull down all the ammo he had just reloaded. Yes that’s time-consuming, but it’s better than the alternative — having a dangerous Kaboom while shooting. With fast-burning pistol powders, a two-grain over-charge could cause a blown case, damaged firearm, and/or serious injury.

Watch Cam-Lock Bullet Puller Used to Remove Bullets from Loaded Ammo:

Use of Bullet Puller starts 4:00 minutes into video.

Gavin says it is vitally important to perform safety checks during the reloading process: “You’ve got to do it — check every single round to make sure there IS powder, and that there’s not too MUCH powder. Double, Triple, Quadruple check your components… and your powder charges. You can’t be too careful.”

To pull down a loaded round, first place the cartridge in the shellholder on your press ram. Then raise the round up into the bullet puller device installed where a die would go. The Hornady Cam-lock bullet puller works by clamping the bullet in a collet when you flip down the red-coated lever. Then, with the case held by the rim in the shell-holder, the bullet exits the cartridge as the press ram is lowered. It takes time, but it’s pretty fool-proof once you get the hang of it. This entire process is illustrated in Gavin’s video, starting near the four-minute mark.

Hornady Cam-Lock Bullet puller Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloder.com

The Hornady Cam Lock Bullet Puller has four (4) key components: 1. Cam-Lock die body; 2. Cam-Lock lever; 3. Stem; and 4. Collet (Caliber-specific).

NOTE: In order to use this tool, you’ll need the appropriate collet for each diameter range of bullets you intend to pull. For example use collet #3 for 6mm, collect #6 for 7mm, and collet #7 for .308 Caliber.

Hornady cam-lock bullet puller ammunition UlimateReloader

Permalink - Videos, Reloading, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
January 20th, 2018

Choosing and Using a Progressive Press — 6.5 Guys Video

6.5 Guys Progressive Press video Gavin Gear Ultimate Reloader

Progressive reloading presses offer shooters speed and efficiency in producing custom-tailored rifle and pistol ammunition. However, there is a wide choice of Progressive Presses and a bewildering array of options to consider. In this video, the 6.5 Guys and UltimateReloader.com’s Gavin Gear provide an overview of the leading Progressive Presses on the market along with key considerations for precision rifle shooters. If you are considering getting a Progessive for rifle ammo reloading, you should watch this informative, 25-minute video.

10 Tips for Reloading Precision Rifle Ammo on a Progressive Press:

1. Make sure the brass is very clean. Don’t mix old range pick-up brass with newer brass.

2. Apply a thin, spray lube to all cases before the sizing/loading cycle.

3. Consider priming your brass separately (with a hand or bench tool) before the operation. Then inspect the primers before loading powder and bullets.

4. Always wear eye protection when loading with the Progressive, particularly if you are priming cases.

5. With tape, mark the powder measure/dropper with the powder type and charge weight.

6. Cycle a few cases, sizing and adding powder but NOT seating bullets. Weigh the powder charges to ensure the powder measure is dispensing the correct charge. Sometimes this will change a couple tenths as it “settles down” after the first few charges.

7. Check the brass for shoulder bump and bullet seating depth carefully for the first few rounds, then check again periodically.

8. Try to maintain a steady pace and operate the handle the same way every time.

9. Visually inspect the powder charge in each case (before bullet seating), and use a lock-out die if your Progressive Press has enough stations.

10. Never, ever mix pistol and rifle powders! If you have previously loaded pistol ammo with your Progressive, make sure ALL the powder (every flake and kernel) is removed from all components of the powder-dropping system before you add rifle powder.

Loading Pistol Ammo on a Dillon

The .45 ACP is probably our favorite centerfire pistol cartridge. In this video, Gavin Gear shows how to load this popular round on a Dillon 550B Progressive Press:

Visit these sites for more Reloading and Precision Shooting Videos:

6.5 Guys

Ultimate Reloader

Permalink - Videos, Reloading No Comments »