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Topics - bikemutt

General Discussion / Sig SSG 3000 thoughts
A buddy of mine has a couple of these rifles, one in .308, one in 6.5 CM. Barrel changes are supposedly quite simple and barrel options have grown. I've shot his .308 rifle, heck, it made even me look good :) Wondering if anyone here has one, or knows about them?

General Discussion / This one is a puzzle to me, maybe team-6.5CM can help?
I realize I'm on thin ice asking about a .223 rifle here on the 6.5 CM forum but, you all are the best :)

I pulled out another Savage from the safe today and cleaned her up so she won't divorce me. This one has seen maybe 300 rounds down the pipe, mostly factory ammo. She is the gun I would take to the range if I want to be sure I'll have a good day, very accurate, not fussy at all.

Anyway, I borescoped the barrel before and after I cleaned it using Wipe-Out. As I'm going down the barrel after cleaning, about half way in a 24" tube, I see this halo. I backed up on it over and over, it's there, I swear, and it was before beer-o-thirty.

It almost looks like a zone caused by the rifling machine stopping and starting again. I'm just guessing here as I've never seen a barrel being made. And yes, this is half way down the barrel, not where the rifling starts.

Thought I'd ask you all if you all have seen anything like this?

General Discussion / How soon we forget (humor)
I haven't shot my Savage rifles for almost a year now, been busy working with an X-bolt and Cooper. So, I decided today was the today to pull out the Savage 10 .308 and get it ready to shoot tomorrow. I'm checking all the usual stuff; made sure scope screws are still tight, brake on tight etc. Then I get to the bolt; press the release, nothing, it won't come out of the action. Fiddle with the safety, nothing. I mess with this darned bolt for 20 minutes to where my better half has now heard a flotilla of bad language that's made it's way to the kitchen and comes in to check up on me.

That's when a sheepish look comes over my face; squeeze the trigger IDIOT!  :-[  :'(

It's gotta be an age thing :)
General Discussion / What target rifle?
There are so many target rifles out there these days, it makes my head spin.

Let's say I won lottery (I didn't, but stick with me) and was dead set on buying a 6.5 CM rifle for <600 yd targets, what would you buy?

I'm talking a rifle that, no matter what my skill level, would always be better than me.

There's factory, semi-custom, custom etc, the list seems to go on and on.

Not trying to start a pissing contest here, this is an honest question. Thanks.
Reloading / New brass, Quickcheck my Quickload please
I'm about to start working with Alpha LRP brass, I've been using Starline LRP brass.

My Starline load has been 41.7 gr H4350 under a Hornady 140 gr BTHP bullet. This load runs right around 2810 fps out of a 28" X-bolt rifle.

The measured H2O capacity of a fireformed Starline case is 51.82 gr, the unfired Alpha measures 49.88 gr H2O.

Using Qickload and holding everything constant except for the case capacity, I need to back off the H4350 to 41.0 gr in order to achieve the same muzzle velocity and approximate Pmax. I realize the capacity of fireformed Alpha may be different than virgin, I just want to be confident I've backed of enough on this new brass to stay safe and not beat it up.

So, does backing of 0.7 gr H4350 sound out of line for a starting point?

I realize neck tension plays a role here, I will keep an eye on that.

Reloading / Case capacity and starting load question
Now that I have my cool-man primer pocket plugs I'm ready to measure some case capacities.

I'm shooting twice-fired Starline LRP brass right now and will be transitioning to Alpha LRP brass as the Starline's wear out.

My question is, when it comes time to work up loads for the Alpha brass, can I make any useful case capacity comparisons between fire-formed Starline and virgin Alpha brass? Since what I'm mostly looking for to start with is making safe loads for the Alpha, I think if the Alpha brass has the same or greater capacity than the Starline, I'd be OK staying close to my current charge weight of 41.7 gr H4350. On the other hand, if the capacity of the Alpha brass is less, I'd probably want to back down a fair amount on the charge.

Of course, I'll use QuickLoad to examine my loads but, there's no substitute for sage advice :)

Reloading / Bullet choice time
I'm running low on my supply of Hornady .264 140 gr BTHP match bullets., time to get some new ones in the pipeline.

I've tried ELD-Ms and Nosler RDFs and maybe a couple others I forgot, the X-bolt I have seems to like these BTHP bullets.

I don't compete and don't shoot past 300 yards and getting darn close to retirement. The Hornady bullets run about $0.22 a piece, Matchkings about $0.33, ELMs about $0.27.

Any reason to move up or just shoot what the rifle likes and thank my lucky stars she's a cheap date? 
Reloading / X-Bolt seating depth ladder run today, help me out experts
I finally got out today for a seating depth ladder, perfect day for it, sunny, cool very little wind.

Quick facts:
Browning X-Bolt Target, 28" barrel, 6.5 Creedmoor.
Starline LRP brass, once fired.
Hornady 140 gr BTHP bullet.
H4350 41.7 gr load.
CCI BR-2 primers.

Brass prep:
Decap, wet pin tumble, dry.
One Shot lube, body size, bump shoulders a hair over 0.001.
Neck size, Lee collet.
Trim, chamfer.

I've been loading for this rifle with a seating depth of 0.030 as it seems to work pretty good. For this test I started at 0.040 and worked towards jam. I used 6 rounds of some factory Hornady 140 gr ELD-M to warm up the barrel. Labradar was employed to track velocity, ES and SD. With my loads the rifle's POI was about 7 o'clock, I left it there.

Below is the target and the chart I used to record velocity data, all 3-shot groups.

A few comments:

Pretty sure I pulled the low ones @ .028 and .016. The masterpiece @ .007 can be blamed on the red hot piece of .556 brass from my lane buddy next door going down my collar, lol.

I really want to love .019 since it's one hole but the ES and SD was the worst of the day. If .004 is really that good it makes me wonder if this gun might like jam?

I painstakingly measured everyone of these very carefully; no setting the micrometer seating die and hoping for the best.

I fat-fingered the Ladradar on the last group, accidentally disarmed the unit after the first shot :)

Anyway, for better or for worse, here goes.

General Discussion / Recoil management, how do you all do it?
In my quest to improve my end of the bargain when it comes to target shooting, I'm interested in presenting a more consistent force which opposes the rifle's recoil, in other words, shouldering the rifle better. At this time I'm strictly a casual benchrest target shooter.

It seems to me this opposing force runs the gamut from allowing free-recoil or zero opposing force, to a rifle rest with infinite opposing force. I do have some rifles that actually shoot pretty darn good in free-recoil but setting up for the next shot can be a bit messy. I'm not really interested in putting my rifle in a vise as that won't teach me anything about marksmanship (I don't think).

 I've experimented with pre-loading the bi-pod which feels like it works pretty good but it's highly dependent on the bench surface; with spikes and a rubber mat it's easy, with concrete or wood and rubber feet, not so much. I've also played with pulling the rifle into my shoulder with my trigger hand which appears to yield pretty good results but at the expense sometimes of trigger control, perhaps owing to the muscle tension involved in holding the rifle in.

So, I figured I'd ask the experts here for their thoughts on the matter :)
Reloading / Sinclair bump gauge insert question
For those who use the stainless steel Sinclair bump gauge inserts, which one do you use for 6.5 CM? I received a 30A from Brownells which seems to seat further up on the shoulder than my Hornady insert. Just want to make sure I have the right thing before I start using it.

Reloading / AMP annealer downgrade
AMP discovered their Aztec sort mode does not function the way they imagined so they are dropping the price of Aztec to $195 and refunding early adopters the difference. Nice to see a company step up and take care of customers when things don't go quite as planned.

As a continuation of our experimenting, late last week we developed and released an enhanced version of Sort mode which enables "live" analysis of each case. This gives much better information on what is actually being measured. The video released on 27 April demonstrates the process.  Since we shot that video, we have now found that all variations revealed in Sort mode are dimensional. We can now find no evidence that it detects mass changes between cases. It is completely at odds with what we believed at Shot Show, but there is no denying the evidence.

Sort mode can work well in detecting dimensional profile differences between cases. It can be, we believe a valuable tool to check uniformity of a batch after case prep. It just won’t detect differences in mass.

Because of that, we are repricing the AZTEC software upgrade to US$195.00. 
Reloading / Chamber cleaning, what to use?
I'm embarrassed to ask this one but what do you all use to clean the chamber of a bolt action rifle?

I know how to clean the bore but never thought much about the chamber until now. I'm about to start the Tubb Final Finish series, they want the rifle real clean is why I ask.
Reloading / Tubb Final Finish question
I'm about to run Final Finish through my X-Bolt but I'm not sure if the barrel falls into the category where I'd shoot the first two steps or not. The instructions say the first two steps should not be applied to hand-lapped or good shooting factory barrels. I don't think Browning barrels are hand-lapped as I've read Browning's comparison of their barrels to custom hand-lapped barrels, I think they would have mentioned it there if in fact their barrels were hand-lapped.

As far as it being good shooting or not, I shot 9 5-shot groups yesterday with no group exceeding 0.95" MOA at 100 yards, 2 were under 1/2" MOA, average of all 9 groups was 0.65" MOA. The results don't seem too bad for a factory barrel to me, especially considering the guy pulling the trigger  O:)

I'm inclined to believe the rifle is in the good shooting factory barrel category so I'd not shoot the first two steps of the Final Finish process, what say the experts?
Reloading / Different loads for new versus reloaded brass?
X-bolt, 6.5 Creedmoor 28", H4350 41.9 gr, BR-2, 140 Hornady BTHP.
I worked up a couple of seating depth ladders today, one with several times reloaded Starline brass, and one with new Starline brass.

The reloaded brass was de-capped, wet tumbled, dried, annealed, body sized, collet neck sized, there was no need to trim. Also, it had been neck reamed after the first firing.

The new brass was collect neck sized, no need to trim.

Measured neck tension with the reloaded brass was between 0.001 and 0002, let's call it 0.0015. The new brass measured 0.001 more so let's call it 00025. I know 1 thou isn't much but I can easily feel the difference when seating as I use a very short handle on the Co-Ax..

Moving closer to the lands from .020 to .005 in .005 increments, the new brass showed pressure signs as at .010 OTLs in the way of slightly heavier bolt lift which persisted all the way through the .005 OTL rounds. I could also feel it in the recoil, a bit more pressure I assume.

Bottom line is the reloaded rounds felt fine, no pressure sign, all the way to 0.005 OTLs. The new brass ammo felt like it was pushing the limits of charge. Would it make sense to load new brass at say, 41.7 gr H4350 and leave the 41.9 gr charge for the reloaded brass? The rifle seems to like the range 41.7-41.9 gr so it's not as if the new brass will shoot poorly.

I don't know any way right now to make the reloads have more neck tension, nor the new brass have less. I guess Lee does offer a .001 less mandrel so maybe I could tighten up the reloads.

Or maybe there's something else going on I don't have the experience to know about yet.

Thank you.