The .308 Winchester for Long Range

A place to discuss subjects related to those who prefer to take those longer shots. Sponsored by European Long Range Hunting and EuroOptic

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secondtry
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by secondtry » Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:36 pm

stokesrj wrote:I’m contemplating going full bench rest Maniac in this endeavor, Wilson in line bushing and seating dies, HS arbor press, flash hole uniformer, primer pocket uniformer and case neck iron and turn. My past experience leads me to believe that I can tune a .5 MOA rifle into a .4MoA rifle for an extra thousand bucks :)
Makes sense to me. If you are going for broke on this one, best to cover all the bases, or at least as many of the bases as are reasonable affordable. Who knows how much "reasonably affordale" means ? :lol:.

Which barrel maker will the custom shop source your barrel from ?



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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by Scotch_egg » Sat Oct 28, 2017 4:05 pm

I would not be going with neck sizing on a hunting rifle.

I would go with whidden neck bushing full length dies. If you want a portable reloading setup look at the Buchanan hand press. It’s seriously smooth and I now prefer it to my forster co-ax for small batch loading.

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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Sat Oct 28, 2017 9:06 pm

secondtry wrote:Which barrel maker will the custom shop source your barrel from ?
I'm not sure who sources the barrel, it is a 5R rifling profile, it may be a Remington for all I know. The reason I went that way, is that I can get a blue printed action and HS precision stock for less than buying an action and stock and then having it blueprinted. So I might look at it as a free barrel and if it doesn't shoot, then I'll replace it and move on.

The benchrest type loading kit is a little more than I estimated once I added it all up.

Wilson Neck size stainless die $56.99
Wilson Micrometer stainless seating die $99.99
Wilson Neck bushings .335, .334, .336 $60
Wilson Full Length Resize Bushing die $90
K&S Arbor Press $115
Wilson Fired Case Holder $11.49
Wilson New Case Holder $11.49
K&S Neck Turn Kit $329.95
K&S Hand Prime Kit $230.95
K&S General Brass Prep Kit $195
Mitutoyo wall thickness Micrometer $165
Grand Total $1,365.86

I just question if it will make an appreciable difference. I can routinely develop loads tuned to a sound rifle that will perform at the .5 MOA level with my existing equipment and would not expect this additional gear to get me that much more accuracy. But you never know until you try.
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stokesrj
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Sat Oct 28, 2017 9:15 pm

Scotch_egg wrote:I would not be going with neck sizing on a hunting rifle.

I would go with whidden neck bushing full length dies. If you want a portable reloading setup look at the Buchanan hand press. It’s seriously smooth and I now prefer it to my forster co-ax for small batch loading.
I know John Whidden and have shot with him. I also own some of his dies, both bushing and non bushing, full length size and neck size only.

I want full length sized ammunition for my R8 for driven hunts. But for most other hunting uses uses neck sized cases are more than good enough and do provide an extra level of accuracy at long ranges, 800-1,000 yards. I usually get five or six loadings neck sizing only before I need to bump the shoulder back to prevent bolt resistance upon closing. I also use a Wilson case gauge on all hunting ammunition. If the round fits the gauge, then I know the bolt will close on it easily.

Part of my motivation is portability of reloading gear. I currently have a dedicated game/trophy room with my loading bench set up. But I plan to downsize soon and want a smaller set up. I'll look into the Buchanan hand press, thanks for bringing it to my attention.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by Scotch_egg » Sun Oct 29, 2017 11:43 am

For the portable set up I suggest this press. I have loaded sub .5” ammo on it already.

https://buchananprecisionmachine.com/pr ... ding-press

I know that most of the top U.K target shooters are now all full length sizing. There was also a good article here on the subject.
http://bulletin.accurateshooter.com/tag/erik-cortina/

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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by SPEEDY » Mon Oct 30, 2017 5:49 am

That article mirrors my experience with reloading, but I mever considered only giving it a light bump.
My dies are all standard but it might be worth buying a competition set for LR use.
I'm soft and I don't care. :dance:

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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by Corjack » Mon Oct 30, 2017 6:43 am

SPEEDY wrote:That article mirrors my experience with reloading, but I mever considered only giving it a light bump.
My dies are all standard but it might be worth buying a competition set for LR use.

After using full length bushing bump dies for a couple years I am sold. Things such as consistency noticeably improved. If you got only one 308 no problem, if you have multiples, and you want to shoot the same ammo, you will need to bump all of it back to fit the tighter chamber. If you got a real tight chamber, and a sloppy one, you might have a few issues. Short brass life due to stretching, or rounds fired in sloppy chamber may not size/bump to fit tight chamber. I ran into a bit of this myself. Even anealing was not enough to bump a handful of brass back, I had fired in a loose chamber, that needed bumped back .010. I fussed around with them a couple times, and finally just pitched them.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Mon Oct 30, 2017 6:46 am

This is currently the process that I use, I only bump the shoulder just enough, .002" for bolt rifles and .003" for my gas guns. This is also the method used by top rifle competitors in some disciplines in the US, namely High Power National Match, F-Class and PR matches. However when it comes to bench rest neck sizing is still the name of the game especially at 1,000 yard benchrest matches where SD's must be low single digit numbers, careful attention is paid to neck tension so necks are inside and outside turned, flash holes uniformed, primer pockets uniformed and many use a force measuring arbor press for bullet seating such as the K&M with force pack
K&M arbor press with force pack.jpg
I'm not sure if this is because the bench rest shooters are stuck in their ways, or that they typically tune for top accuracy disregarding top velocity which in turn may make neck sized cases less likely to be expanded to the point that they fail to spring back, or just why. I can say that I've seen a couple of our top F-Class shooters try their hand in 1,000 yard benchrest competitions using their full length sized ammunition and go away shamed.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by Corjack » Mon Oct 30, 2017 6:56 am

Shows a difference in locality. Most of the 600 and 1000 yard BR guys I know use full length bushing bump dies. A couple are always in the top five at most matches. One of them went to a match in the Phoenix Az. area, and came back absolutely baffled by what he saw some of the local shooters doing.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:46 am

I suspect this notion of regional preference is correct, I just checked with Speedy Gonzalez which the last time I saw him shoot was using the Wilson neck size dies. He has changed to a custom full length bushing die cut with the same chamber reamer used to cut his barrel chamber, seating die is also made from a section of the barrel and used with an arbor press. He is more of a 100 and 200 yard benchrest competitor but with four consecutive national titles he is among the best so I tend to pay attention to what he has to say.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by JPBlaser » Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:06 am

Actually I at the moment am looking for a 308 win. FL sizing die to grind to my chamber dimensions.
I think this will give me a tad better case life aside from the possible accuracy benefits.
On the other side I'm waiting for some Forster Benchrest dies plus a bushing neck sizing one with shoulder bump for my 308.
The Forster FL Benchrest sizing die should in factory configuration bump the shoulder less than the regular dies without further setup.Anyway I think that grinding one to my chamber will be an interesting experiment. :)

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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by Joe338ST » Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:01 pm

What I've done in the past is I would fire about 5 rounds or so only neck sizing the brass. Make sure you trim the neck back. You get to a point where it just gets a little difficult / tight to close the bolt on the case. At this point you know the shoulder is tight up against the chamber. I measure the shoulder length of the brass. I run the brass through the die and remeasure the shoulder length. The case shoulder should be 0.001 or 0.002 shorter (depending on how easily the bolt closes on the brass case). If it is more than that you can turn the die a little higher in the reloading press and lock it. Then check on a fresh 5 times fired tight round to see if the shoulder has been set back enough. If it is not enough you'll need to turn the die down ie deeper towards the shell holder. If the shoulder cannot be bumped back enough ie your rifle chamber is a bit long (very unlikely) you can sand away a small amount off the face of the reloading press shell holder where it contacts the die face and that would enable you to bump the shoulder back. Once set this way the shoulder should hardly move. Of course if you have numerous chambers you'll just have to have a die setup for each.

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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Fri Nov 03, 2017 5:43 am

Joe, that is precisely the procedure I use. But in some calibers and chambers, like my Stolle Panda 6.5 Grendel I can go perhaps 8 or ten loading neck size only before needing to bump the shoulder back. I think the number of loading is dependent on the chamber fit, hardness of brass, and pressure of the load.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by stokesrj » Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:32 pm

I started load development today for my .308 Rem 700 R5. I tried a combination of things, that I've been pondering. First I just got the gun today, it is a Remington Custom Shop blue printed 20" fluted and threaded bull barrel with an extended tacticool knob, HS Precision stock, cerakoted armorer black. I mounted a Nightforce 15-55X50 scope in Nightforce 30mm direct mount with 20 degree tilt.
Rem 700 5R.jpg
I am skeptical about the need for prolonged barrel break in but I also kind of believe some sort of break in helps make cleaning easier as the barrel goes along it's life. So, I started out shooting one, cleaning, shooting another cleaning for ten rounds using some Federal Gold medal Match 168 grain SMK factory loads while sighting in the scope. I then shot a few three shot groups cleaning every three shots. It was obvious this gun wants to shoot, all groups were sub MOA.

Then I shot a matrix using the 168 grain Sierra Tipped MatchKing and H4895, starting at 39 grains and working up in .5 grain increments to 42.5 grains, just one round each, watching for any pressure signs and observing velocity, I was looking for a flat spot where velocity was tight for three consecutive loads.

I was also observing point of impact shift and noticed that as I approached 42 grains things really came together, tight velocities and 41, 41.5, and 42 all went into less than .25 MOA. This is a region I'll then do some fine tuning around, smaller increments of powder and varying seating depth.

The thing that really impressed me was how tight the group for all nine loads was and how it tightened up as I increased charges. The 41-42 grain loads were all right around 2,600 fps. Here is a pic of all nine shots, the high one was one of the light loads at the start.

I'm pretty confident that developing less than .5 MOA loads is going to be easy.
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Re: The .308 Winchester for Long Range

Post by secondtry » Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:38 pm

H 4350 Bob ?? Is that a typo, or is there some plan behind it ?

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