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The right ammo... It's a big deal.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Godsgunman, Dec 9, 2019.

  1. Godsgunman

    Godsgunman Member

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    So just bought a new Savage Axis 308 for hunting. My buddy gave me 2 boxes of Hornady Whitetail to sight it in and use for the season. I know this is an entry level rifle but it's still a Savage and known to be accurate. Well to my dismay even after 20 shots the best groups I could get at 100 yds was 3 1/2". I was very frustrated and had quite a few flyers. Came home and cleaned it real good and bought some Federal Nontypical ammo. Took 2 shots at 150 yds and this was the result
    IMG_20191209_201408.jpg
    Now THAT is the accuracy I was looking for out of this rifle. The Hornady and Federal were both 150gr. It's just amazing to me the difference in quality and performance between 2 well known and respected brands.
    Take the time and find out what works best for you and your rifle. Makes a world of difference.
     
  2. giggitygiggity

    giggitygiggity Member

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    You’re 100% correct. I’ve had the same experience with many of my rifles... some will shoot terrible with one kind of ammo and then I switch to something else and the group is a fraction of the size.

    On a side note, I hope Non-Typical works well in most rifles as I picked up some 6.5 Creedmoor for a recent rifle purchase.

    I’m glad you found a good match!
     
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  3. Legionnaire
    • Contributing Member

    Legionnaire Member

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    This is why many of us hand load our own ammo. Glad you found a load that works.
     
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  4. mdThanatos

    mdThanatos Member

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    Savage rifles and Federal ammo have typically been a good combination. I have had good results with even their blue box 308 offering. I don't know if it is because both Savage and Federal were under the same umbrella or not but I haven't had any accuracy issues using them together.
     
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  5. fpgt72

    fpgt72 member

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    You have so much more control if you roll your own. It is not THAT expensive to get into, does not take that much space, you don't need a ton of stuff to get started.

    The box the OP had was bad, then the other box was good.....next time out with boxes from a different lot it will be starting all over again.

    I really hate deer season....and SOME deer hunters....they come out to the club shoot 3 rounds and call it good. Don't get me wrong anything that removes forest rats is good in my book, but really guys....you are not hunters you are not shooters you are just killers.
     
  6. Picher

    Picher Member

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    I think that many shooters are afraid to start loading. It's a daunting process, unless you have someone to teach the fundamentals. I learned from a good, careful handloader and even after some 50 years of loading, and maybe 40 years after his death I think of him. I've also helped several others learn the safe way to do things at the bench.
     
  7. alsaqr

    alsaqr Member

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    Yep, i'm well aware which ammo works in my individual rifles; i make the stuff.
     
  8. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    That is an impressive TWO shot group.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2019
  9. fireside44

    fireside44 member

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    I've been loading for ten years now but the real problem was load testing since, at the time, I had to pay to shoot at locations clear across town and not all of them want you to even be shooting reloads. So unless youve already got the magical formula for your gun it's a real pain waiting for a range trip only to find you can increase your starting charge.
     
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  10. fpgt72

    fpgt72 member

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    Just how would they know if you are shooting reloads? ..... the little plastic boxes....hate to tell those people this but I have factory ammo in little plastic boxes.
     
  11. fpgt72

    fpgt72 member

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    I think it goes past that......I think I am safe in saying that there are quite a bit of new people in shooting now....and people that are coming back to it.

    I know of several people that are afraid to death of "reloaded" ammo. Lots of mis-information out there usually revolving around you will blow your hand off, face off, whatever. Also some of the "rules" reloaders go by tend to support this....never shoot anyone's reloads but your own.....if you are having an event (boy scouts for example) only factory ammo is to be used....stuff like this makes people go well if it is so safe why not let a boy scout shoot that garand with your home made 3006......well.......

    Then there is cost.....the first thing they say is.....well how much will I save reloading my own 9mm......well not much, but reload your 375 H&H you are going to save money pretty quick.......however not many people shoot goofy stuff like that, and unless they are running hundreds of rounds a weekend loading for "common" flavors usually takes a while to recover costs.....then there is the time.....not many I know of would suggest to someone new out of the gate to start with a full progressive setup with all the feeders to where you pull the lever and a new round pops out.....then the costs of such a setup are pretty up there for entry......

    Then what if you don't like it.....what if the entire process of loading ammo is just something you hate....you would much rather go buy 4 boxes of 30-40 Krag at $30 a box and shoot your once a month CMP match that way.....nothing wrong with that.....if you pay for that dillon it is a bigger hit to your pocket over a single stage.
     
  12. fireside44

    fireside44 member

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    It's the saggy pants syndrome. I think you are using reloads so you have to leave. What you have to say about it doesn't mean anything. Now hurry up, I have a dozen people waiting to get a lane. The waiting area was like a barroom on busy nights, swarming with people.

    If you cant load test in your back yard it becomes much more of a hassle to roll your own ammo, specially if you are new to handloading.
     
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  13. HamSlamma

    HamSlamma Member

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    You guys talk about Federal working so well in Savage.

    I own 4 Savage rifles and Im sorry to say that Federal dose not group well in any of them. Winchester in one, Hornady in two of them and the other likes Remington.....ya never know!
     
  14. fpgt72

    fpgt72 member

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    Their business so they can say we don't want you here for any reason under the sun.

    I thank my stars I have never had to deal with that.

    I am guessing cap and ball guys never shoot there....or other black powder type guys.....every round is a reload then.

    I would drive across state to take my business elsewhere.

    I am lucky enough to walk out my back door and shoot......even at that I will load up several different mixes and trot off with my notebooks and stuffs and see just where the little holes go and how fast they got put there. I don't see why someone that needs to travel to a range could not do that same thing.

    Next spring I plan on shooting at greater distance then I can at home....limited to 100-ish at home....bench is currently at 97 yards.....why 97 because I don't want to move it back to 100....sucker is heavy. Now next spring if I end up at a range where I can shoot 500 I have a feeling those great loads I have for 100 might not be the ticket for 500 and I will be working up loads again......only issue is the 500 yard range is about an hour and a half away.....so getting ducks in a row will be more of a big deal.....I am pretty off the cuff where shooting goes, at home brings this....and will forget this that or the other and have to walk back to the house and get whatever I forgot....not an option if it is that far away.

    Edit to add:
    sounds like a great place to open a new range....several have opened here in KC, and they do a land office business.....not sure of insurance or that jazz, but they are pretty swanky and have to be making money.
     
  15. fireside44

    fireside44 member

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    No they went to the other range which allows reloads but not more than one shot every two seconds. Therefore, neither range was acceptable.


    I didn't have that kinda disposable income so I sold my house and just moved outta state and bought a bigger backyard not in city limits. Problem solved.
     
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  16. JBradley500

    JBradley500 Member

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    I don't know if this is a coincidence or not but I just got a 308 Bergara Hunter with a DNZ mount and a Leupold scope that I mounted with great detail. I shot 165 grain Hornady American Whitetail and it shot the worst groups I've ever seen. Frustrating as hell.

    I just went through the gun to check for anything keeping the action from seating or barrel contact. Cleaned up some things but I hope it's the ammo honestly. I'm going to try something else and maybe a 150 grain.
     
  17. <*(((><
    • Contributing Member

    <*(((>< Contributing Member

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    You should see my single shot group.

    @Godsgunman I would shoot a 5 round group and see what it looks like.
     
  18. kBob

    kBob Member

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    Picher,

    Getting in the way back machine I turn back to about 1990 (Golly, Mr. Peabody, did they even have guns that far back?) (Shut up, Sherman.)

    There was some over lap in my local gun club and my local Ham Radio League. In the radio world one needs a good "Elmer" or mentor to get started on the best foot. It occurred to us that the same might be true in reloading. We devoted a couple of our "Show and Tell" sessions in our gun club to Simple reloading with Hand presses like the Lee "Hammer-matic" Loader and the Lyman Tong tools and bench mounted Single station presses. We got such good reviews that we offered a four hour session at a donated gathering spot at a Putt Putt golf course "clubhouse" (owner was club member and interested in learning reloading) and got eight or nine folks a good running start where they each actually loaded some ammo for their own use.

    Our scribe wrote it up and sent a suggestion to the NRA for creating a NRA Certified Reloading instructor ticket. I understand they have a course for basic reloading available now but have not seen it.

    My wife tells me that it I offer such a class again today that the "Release and Hold Harmless Agreement" she prepares for me may be of a size to be a back breaker.... lawyers, ya got to hate them or marry them...

    -kBob
     
  19. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    Hard to draw any real conclusions from two rounds. I’d finish out a 20 round box before assuming the Federal ammo is shooting better than the Hornady.
     
  20. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    I suspect you will get excellent repeatable results with 1 shot groups. :D

    Now show us the 1 shot group on a buck!
     
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  21. Picher

    Picher Member

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    The dies for the several cartridges I load are carefully adjusted, based on the likes of each rifle/caliber, but settled on for the rifles I shoot most. Luckily, the settings tend to be pretty good for the two or three rifles that I may have in that chambering.

    I'm fortunate that the several rifles I'm loading for in a particular chambering tend to like the same die settings, powders, and even bullet choices. It's not always that way. Some powders, bullets, and seating depths seem to work for several rifles in some cartridge chamberings. For instance, Varget has been a very tolerant powder and the .223 cartridge in my three bolt-action rifles seems to shoot well in each.

    Some cartridges just are not that tolerant to being fired in multiple rifles, especially with loads that approach maximum for a particular rifle's chamber.
     
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  22. Old Stumpy

    Old Stumpy Member

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    I don't know why people think this. I started reloading back around 1972, and I didn't know anyone to ask questions of. And there was no internet. My resources were ten year old library books on hand loading, and a newly purchased reloading manual. I found that if you followed the written instructions, were careful and observant, and read and reread anything that wasn't clear, it was pretty straight-forward.
    Don't exceed the listed powder charges for the bullet weights given.
    Verify that you never double charge a case before seating a bullet.
    Never guess.
     
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  23. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Did it shoot better because you cleaned it, or changed ammo?
     
  24. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

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    This is just one of the reasons why I always run several different brands/types of ammo through any gun I buy.

    Why waste time with the aggravation of feeding your gun something it doesn't like or dosen't shoot well? All you get for it is bent out of shape for no good reason.
     
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  25. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    Federal Gold Medal Match has given great accuracy in the guns I've tried it in.

    Privi match, not so much even their match components left me wanting. +/- 2gr from the lot of 168gr "match" bullets was way too much variance. I got +/- 0.1gr from SMK's.
     
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