6.5 Load Dev Questions and Plans - Please critique (gently haha)

Baron23

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    Hi guys – I’m an older fella and longtime former competitive skeet shooter (well, I competed and maybe leave it at that! haha) who is relatively new to rifles and definitely new to reloading metallic. My good friend @GBMaryland has been helping/advising me and my bringing some questions to the forum in no way indicates a lack of confidence in him. But, I do have some questions that I think would be beneficial to ask of a larger audience. However, I will try not to do a mag dump here and will attempt to limit my questions and try to keep a bit focused.

    My initial questions go to my first time doing load development.

    I have read the last 10 pages of the 6.5 thread here on the Hide, read about Newberry, Satterlee, and Accurate Shooter articles, watched various vids, and even tried to slog through the thread that @Dthomas3523 started questioning some cherished tenets of load dev (which I mostly didn’t understand haha). I do kind of have a plan in mind and submit it, along with a couple of questions, for you kind comment and critique.

    Background info:
    • Load is 6.5 CM
    • Rifle has a 24” Proof SS barrel with 7.5 twist, 970 rounds down it, and it’s fairly fast...factory Berger 140 Hybrid avg 2870 and Hndy ELD-M avg 2800
    • After some practice with the Hndy OAL gauge, I have a fairly good CBTO to the lands of 2.224
    • Brass is Hndy once fired (by me)
      • Dry media tumbled
      • FL sized with Redding die w .002 should bump back
      • trimmed slightly short to 1.9” on GBMaryland’s Giraud (mine is on order)
      • Tumbled again and primed with CCI BR-2
    • RCBS MatchMaster (kudos to RCBS for great vet discount)
    • Using a Redding Big Boss II and Redding micrometer competition seating die with VLD stem
    • Will use H4350 and Berger 140 gr Hybrids
    My Plan (yeah, this is where you get to laugh at me! haha):
    • Load a range of powder drops with the same seating depth
    • Shoot 3 at each load increment
    • Chrono w LabRadar
    • Look for flat spot in speeds to make load a bit more tolerant of variation and hope to see one fall around the 2800-2850 or so fps I’m getting out of factory as they seems to shoot well in my gun
    • I have the software that a member posted for uploading and graphing LabRadar data…but still have to read the instructions and mess with it a bit
    • Zero in on any found flat spot(s)…maybe reduce increment size of load and shoot five shots at each load with chrono and look at groups
    • Then with selected load, adjust seating depth for group size
    Questions:
    • Where to start/end initial powder load ladder and what increments to use (i.e. .from X to Y grains in .3 grain increments or???). I note that Berger’s book shows min/max load of H4350 for the 140 bullets as 36.5/40.7 but note that almost every load I have seen listed here is more than that…ranging from 41.3 to 42.3. Starting at 36.5 doesn’t seem too reasonable??? And over 42 seems….well, I sort of know what to look for wrt to pressure signs but as a new reloader I’m not sure how hard I should press this.

    • What bullet seating depth to use for initial chrono/group shots? I believe I have read that the Berger hybrids are fairly jump tolerant and I thought that somewhere I read that they like .0060-.0090 jump but I can’t swear to it. What would you set as the jump for the initial chrono/group loads?

    I have to run out now for a few hours so if you are kind enough to reply, please don’t feel disrespected if I don’t acknowledge it immediately.

    Cheers and thanks for any who have taken the time to reply.
     
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    918v

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    In my chamber 140 hybrids hit the rifling at about 2.970” and it’s a new barrel. So if I seat it to 2.950” (.020” off) then I’ll only have .15” of the bullet in the neck and the tips will rub the front of the magazine.

    So I like 2.850” to start which is .120” off the lands but it’s more reasonable. That puts the bullet shank close to the bottom of the neck. Hybrids are not like ELD and they will be way far off the lands at similar coals.

    6.5 chambers vary in length and girth and what is safe in one may be too hot in another. That’s why Berger’s data is so mild. My friends DTA he gets 2650 FPS with only 39.6 grains of H4350 with a 147 ELD which should tell you something.

    With that said, I would load single rounds from 40 on up in .3gr increments looking for a flat spot, then start tuning the coal in .005” increments.
     
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    nn8734

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    I do OCWs in 3 shot groups over LabRadar. Used to do ladders but switched. For my AXMC 6.5 Creedmoor (24” Proof SS) I started at 41.0 g and went up in .3 grain increments up to 43.5 grains. Located a good node between 42.4 and 43 grains. Settled on 42.7g jumping .075”. MV is 2955 on average. It’s consistent to 1000m which is as far as I typically shoot that cartridge.

    Components: 130 Berger | Lapua SRP brass | Fed205M-AR and H4350.
     
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    OREGUN

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    I just did this with a new barrel and using 144 hybrids/H4350.

    I started with 5 shot groups at 38 grains, every .5 grains to 42 (I called Berger, they said 42.3 max) looking That’s 45 rounds total.I seat .010” off the lands to start.

    I don’t start at the absolute bottom of the load table because I’m not going to run a 2500 FPS load...so I start up a little. I start with .5 grain increments with 6.5CM...I would use .3 for 6BR...It’s a smaller volume to begin with.

    let’s say I get some good velocities and groups around 40 to 40.5 grains, I’ll go back and shoot 5 shots at .3 grain increments to define the node....maybe 39.6, 39.9, 40.2, 40.5 and 40.8. I like to pick an accurate, velocity appropriate charge that leaves me a half grain or so below any changes in accuracy/pressure in case I go someplace hot to shoot or shoot a rain covered cartridge.

    I’ve always had hybrids shoot best for me at about .015” jump, so assuming it fits in the magazine, I’ll then pick my charge weight and test seating depths in .003” increments from just touching the lands to about .025” jump with 3 shots each. Usually there’s a .006-.009” range wherein the three shots make a NOTICEABLY better group. I’ll pick the longest of those seatinging depths so that if the throat grows, I’ll move into the seating depth range that is good.

    hope that helps
     
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    Texasflyer

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    Sounds good to me, pretty much word for word the way i load. I go in 3 thousandths increments on lenght. Powder i start at the bottom and work up in half grain increments all the way to the max load.
     
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    JS/

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    I started at 40 grs. of H4350 with new Lapua brass and 145 gr. Barnes Matchburners. CCI BR-2 primers were used, and 40.3 grs matched the 147 gr. Hornady ELD-M factory load for velocity at 2700 ft/sec. I went through a few three round groups and ended the testing at 41.5 grs. H4350 with 2767 ft/sec. I am liking the 41.5 gr. load so will try some 140 gr. Hornady BTHP match bullets when they arrive. I also have a box of Berger 140 gr. Hybrid Match to try, now that I have some velocity numbers. Barrel is a Hawk Hill 26" from Blue Mountain.
     
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    Choid

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    I'd also start around 40. With hybrids I've found they shoot well at every depth. I imagine you will find a powder charge that works and not have to monkey around much with depth. In general, if I find two speed nodes, I'll generally choose to be at the second highest, rather than just at the top.
     

    Baron23

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    In my chamber 140 hybrids hit the rifling at about 2.970” and it’s a new barrel. So if I seat it to 2.950” (.020” off) then I’ll only have .15” of the bullet in the neck and the tips will rub the front of the magazine.

    So I like 2.850” to start which is .120” off the lands but it’s more reasonable. That puts the bullet shank close to the bottom of the neck. Hybrids are not like ELD and they will be way far off the lands at similar coals.

    6.5 chambers vary in length and girth and what is safe in one may be too hot in another. That’s why Berger’s data is so mild. My friends DTA he gets 2650 FPS with only 39.6 grains of H4350 with a 147 ELD which should tell you something.

    With that said, I would load single rounds from 40 on up in .3gr increments looking for a flat spot, then start tuning the coal in .005” increments.
    Thank you for your reply. May I ask...why COAL as, aside from considerations of mag length, it doesn't really play for jump versus using CBTO.

    And may I ask, if using COAL only, how do you know how far your ogive is from the lands? CBTO I get, COAL has me a bit confused.

    And again, thank you for taking the time to reply.
     

    Choid

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    Thank you for your reply. May I ask...why COAL as, aside from considerations of mag length, it doesn't really play for jump versus using CBTO.

    And may I ask, if using COAL only, how do you know how far your ogive is from the lands? CBTO I get, COAL has me a bit confused.

    And again, thank you for taking the time to reply.
    If you use a gauge to find the lands, you can then measure the COAL of the round and go from there, or the CBTO. Just depends on the measure you take.
     
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    Baron23

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    I go in 3 thousandths increments on lenght. Powder i start at the bottom and work up in half grain increments all the way to the max load.
    Wow, I was thinking just the opposite...that is, powder increments in .3 gr and later after identifying a powder load candidate, CBTO in .010.

    And when you say bottom, you mean bottom of published powder load? 36.5 grains seems pretty low, nobody seems to be loading down there for 6.5 CM with H4350, and you go to max published and not over it? Again, Berger publishes 40.7 as max but it seems that the vast majority are loading over that...over 41 gr.

    Thank you for taking the time to reply.
     

    Texasflyer

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    Wow, I was thinking just the opposite...that is, powder increments in .3 gr and later after identifying a powder load candidate, CBTO in .010.

    And when you say bottom, you mean bottom of published powder load? 36.5 grains seems pretty low, nobody seems to be loading down there for 6.5 CM with H4350, and you go to max published and not over it? Again, Berger publishes 40.7 as max but it seems that the vast majority are loading over that...over 41 gr.

    Thank you for taking the time to reply.
    Just as part of the process i always do it the same way. I may adjust powder slightly later but i find half a grain usually gets me around where i need to be on a starting ladder. Just me though. Im no pro
     
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    Baron23

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    I started at 40 grs. of H4350 with new Lapua brass and 145 gr. Barnes Matchburners. CCI BR-2 primers were used, and 40.3 grs matched the 147 gr. Hornady ELD-M factory load for velocity at 2700 ft/sec. I went through a few three round groups and ended the testing at 41.5 grs. H4350 with 2767 ft/sec. I am liking the 41.5 gr. load so will try some 140 gr. Hornady BTHP match bullets when they arrive. I also have a box of Berger 140 gr. Hybrid Match to try, now that I have some velocity numbers. Barrel is a Hawk Hill 26" from Blue Mountain.
    Thank you. I am thinking about starting at 39 gr though much of that low end will prob be wasted....but, experience; you can't buy it but you will pay for it so some added loading and shooting/chrono won't be entirely wasted. My friend @GBMaryland also suggested starting at 40 gr and I should probably listen to both of you.

    Thanks again for taking the time to reply.
     

    Texasflyer

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    Wow, I was thinking just the opposite...that is, powder increments in .3 gr and later after identifying a powder load candidate, CBTO in .010.

    And when you say bottom, you mean bottom of published powder load? 36.5 grains seems pretty low, nobody seems to be loading down there for 6.5 CM with H4350, and you go to max published and not over it? Again, Berger publishes 40.7 as max but it seems that the vast majority are loading over that...over 41 gr.

    Thank you for taking the time to reply.
    I do go to max published for the manual that matches my bullets. Variations in bullet wall thickness ect, i prefer the data from the projectile company. I know max or min is never the right node, but a process is a process and i enjoy it.
     

    Baron23

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    If you use a gauge to find the lands, you can then measure the COAL of the round and go from there, or the CBTO. Just depends on the measure you take.
    Well yeah, except bullet base to meplat of bullets is variable to some degree. I think I will stick to CBTO and then take COAL from a round for mag length considerations (but yes, I can take it right off of the Hndy gauge with a Berger bullet).

    And, again....I'm certainly no expert but the Hndy bullet comparator and a good set of calipers is fairly easy to use....if you can find the proper caliber insert for the comparator. It blows my what items are hard to find these days....I mean, a CBTO gauge insert????

    Thanks!
     
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    Choid

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    Well yeah, except bullet base to meplat of bullets is not variable to some degree. I think I will stick to CBTO and then take COAL from a round for mag length considerations (but yes, I can take it right off of the Hndy gauge with a Berger bullet).

    And, again....I'm certainly no expert but the Hndy bullet comparator and a good set of calipers is fairly easy to use....if you can find the proper caliber insert for the comparator. It blows my what items are hard to find these days....I mean, a CBTO gauge insert????

    Thanks!
    CBTO is better. No doubt you are doing it right. A lot of bullets are so good nowadays that it doesn't really matter, but there is no reason to start with bad habits.
     
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    whatsupdoc

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    If you are using 140 Berger Hybrids I would start at .020 jump, load 40.0 grains of H4350 at .3 grain increments until 41.0 grains.

    EDIT: Somehow I cut the text.

    Then .2 grain increments until 42.0 if you get any sighns of pressure stop.
     
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    Baron23

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    If you are using 140 Berger Hybrids I would start at .020 jump, load 40.0 grains of H4350 at .3 grain increments until 41.0 grains
    Thank you...yeah, I was thinking just start at .020 jump and after I find a select a charge weight to deeper dive into I could increase the seating depth in increments and see if it all pulls together.

    Thanks!
    I just did this with a new barrel and using 144 hybrids/H4350.

    I started with 5 shot groups at 38 grains, every .5 grains to 42 (I called Berger, they said 42.3 max) looking That’s 45 rounds total.I seat .010” off the lands to start.

    I don’t start at the absolute bottom of the load table because I’m not going to run a 2500 FPS load...so I start up a little. I start with .5 grain increments with 6.5CM...I would use .3 for 6BR...It’s a smaller volume to begin with.

    let’s say I get some good velocities and groups around 40 to 40.5 grains, I’ll go back and shoot 5 shots at .3 grain increments to define the node....maybe 39.6, 39.9, 40.2, 40.5 and 40.8. I like to pick an accurate, velocity appropriate charge that leaves me a half grain or so below any changes in accuracy/pressure in case I go someplace hot to shoot or shoot a rain covered cartridge.

    I’ve always had hybrids shoot best for me at about .015” jump, so assuming it fits in the magazine, I’ll then pick my charge weight and test seating depths in .003” increments from just touching the lands to about .025” jump with 3 shots each. Usually there’s a .006-.009” range wherein the three shots make a NOTICEABLY better group. I’ll pick the longest of those seatinging depths so that if the throat grows, I’ll move into the seating depth range that is good.

    hope that helps
    Thank you so much....sorry, not sure how I missed your very informative post. Berger said 42.3 max?? For 140 hybrids? Wow, that's not what their expensive hard cover book says but I certainly believe you. And yes, while I'm not afraid of getting good speed, I too would like to be below pressure signs for the outside environmental reasons you mentioned.
     

    Choid

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    I think we all make it more complicated than necessary the first few times. My older loads are all "weirder" than anything I come up with these days. Just make sure you only change one variable at a time, and be honest with yourself when you are shooting groups. It's pretty easy to get really tight trying to shoot the smallest groups possible over and over, and then just toss something. If a load has been good three or four times, and then you get all nervous and get a flyer, it is probably you.
     
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    918v

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    Thank you for your reply. May I ask...why COAL as, aside from considerations of mag length, it doesn't really play for jump versus using CBTO.

    And may I ask, if using COAL only, how do you know how far your ogive is from the lands? CBTO I get, COAL has me a bit confused.

    And again, thank you for taking the time to reply.

    CBTO is hard to measure consistently and accurately. Your comparator will produce different readings if you spin the bullet or the cartridge on the caliper jaw and also based on the amount of pressure you apply when measuring.

    People who obsess about chasing the lands care about CBTO. They make teeny adjustments to each round because they think that maintaining a certain amount of jump produces accuracy. Bullet jump does not produce accuracy. Seating depth relative to muzzle is what produces accuracy.

    For example, in one of my 308 rifles three different lots of Sierra 175SMK will have wildly different CBTO numbers but the accuracy comes in at 2.810” approximately, independent of the lot number or jump or the CBTO reading. If I relied on the CBTO and my comparator and made adjustments to each round based on what my comparator said, one lot of SMK could be at 2.850”, another at 2.795”, an the third at 2.820” and none would group worth a shit.

    Here is what I do:

    I take a bullet, put it in a slit case, find the lands, and then use that bullet as a reference tool to set my seater die. I then make my seating depth adjustments using the micrometer on the seater die. I move the micrometer .005”, the bullet seating depth moves .005” that simple. I don’t measure each round. When I run out of bullets from that lot, I start on a new lot. I leave the seater die setting alone, paying attention to the coal, and if the new lot seats to the same approximate coal, I shoot a test series .005” apart and find the middle of the node.

    The rifling can wear away and it doesn’t matter. The fact that the bullet is jumping more or less doesn’t matter. I’m far from the lands and don’t care. The accuracy is there until the barrel wears out.
     
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    Baron23

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    I think we all make it more complicated than necessary the first few times. My older loads are all "weirder" than anything I come up with these days. Just make sure you only change one variable at a time, and be honest with yourself when you are shooting groups. It's pretty easy to get really tight trying to shoot the smallest groups possible over and over, and then just toss something. If a load has been good three or four times, and then you get all nervous and get a flyer, it is probably you.
    hahahaha....overthinking is my middle name! LOL

    And yes about only changing one variable at a time....I have a background in test and that's a guiding principal....isolate what you are trying to test as much as possible and only change one thing at time.

    I plan to use some BR targets I was given to do this rather than a classic "ladder test" for just the reason of trying to isolate me from the results...which isn't really possible but yes, I def need to call me shot good or not when looking at groups.

    Thanks again
     

    whatsupdoc

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    Thank you...yeah, I was thinking just start at .020 jump and after I find a select a charge weight to deeper dive into I could increase the seating depth in increments and see if it all pulls together.

    Thanks!

    Thank you so much....sorry, not sure how I missed your very informative post. Berger said 42.3 max?? For 140 hybrids? Wow, that's not what their expensive hard cover book says but I certainly believe you. And yes, while I'm not afraid of getting good speed, I too would like to be below pressure signs for the outside environmental reasons you mentioned.
    You really dont need to go crazy with load development for 6.5 creed and prs.
    At one point I had 3 different 6.5 creed rifles and they all shot fine at .020, I find a load the rifle likes at 100 then test at 200 yards
    to make sure it holds together and that is it.

    Got a chance to shoot long yesterday and broke out my 6.5 creed, It has 1580 through the barrel and it shoots bugholes.
    25" barrel, 140 bergers 41.2 H4350 .020 jump at 2780 FPS. No wind made hitting a 5" plate at 1000 yards fairly easy.
    The level of performance that I could squeeze out of the rifle by testing bullet jump would be pointless as I am the weakest link.
     

    OREGUN

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    Thank you...yeah, I was thinking just start at .020 jump and after I find a select a charge weight to deeper dive into I could increase the seating depth in increments and see if it all pulls together.

    Thanks!

    Thank you so much....sorry, not sure how I missed your very informative post. Berger said 42.3 max?? For 140 hybrids? Wow, that's not what their expensive hard cover book says but I certainly believe you. And yes, while I'm not afraid of getting good speed, I too would like to be below pressure signs for the outside environmental reasons you mentioned.
    It was the 144 LRHT...I called and ask and the guy said 38-42.3 H4350. I had started with some loads down around 38 before I talked to them. Had I called first, I would have started at 39. The point remains, if you have their book, start low-ish in their range and work toward the top.
     

    OREGUN

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    If you haven’t seen it already, this is a good demonstration of seating depth effects. John shoots very well and is a tremendous reloader...and a hell of a nice guy to boot.


     

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    Looking at my targets, the seating depths roughly corresponding to .015”, .018, and .021” jump shrunk my groups from ~.75” to between .3” and .4” for the same charge weight.
     
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    918v

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    Thank you...yeah, I was thinking just start at .020 jump and after I find a select a charge weight to deeper dive into I could increase the seating depth in increments and see if it all pulls together.

    .020” off will likely put you way past 2.9” coal. Will that work in your magazine?
     
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    Texasflyer

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    I prefer to do the full monte because you get a nice clear picture of the group moving in. Sometimes i like 5 shots over 3 also.
     
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    If you haven’t seen it already, this is a good demonstration of seating depth effects. John shoots very well and is a tremendous reloader...and a hell of a nice guy to boot.



    Thank you, my friend. I have looked at some of John's vids and they are very clear and informative but I had not viewed this one before. So much info from so many sources.....hard to consume it all.

    I note that John references Erik Cortina and I have to say that I like his content and presentation quite a bit and he seems on point about separating what is truly beneficial from what is....well, just an expression of OCD! haha

    Thank you again.
     

    Baron23

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    .020” off will likely put you way past 2.9” coal. Will that work in your magazine?
    Dunno yet....MDT ACICS mag. I will def measure. My plans include building a dummy round to whatever jump I decide to start at (and .20 seems reasonable) and I will take the COAL and see how it fits in my mag. These mags do have a binder plate installed and I don't really want to be drilling, etc to remove them. If necessary, I can always buy more but without.

    Thank you.
     

    Baron23

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    I prefer to do the full monte because you get a nice clear picture of the group moving in. Sometimes i like 5 shots over 3 also.
    hahaha...there are some things guys just don't need to know about each other hahaha....joking of course

    1621786424999.png
     
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    I’m in the same boat so don’t take any advice from me but I started to think I’m never going to learn anything if I change too many things at one time so I settled on an oversimplified process. .

    Erik Cortina says that a seating depth “node” is only .006 wide.

    It depends on what mags you’re going to be running what their OAL will be but that’s normally where I start a seating depth test and work down in .002 or whatever is convenient for your clicks on your micrometer seating die until you get a good durable load. I think a micrometer seating due saves a lot of time here. Then I go down to the smallest adjustments my micrometer seating did will make and once I think I’m where I want to be to pick final seating depth based on that.

    The main thing I look for is that the point of impact on the target doesn’t shift much if it all within + - .002 to .003 on either side of the final seating depth to help with consistency and giving a little room to work as the throat cooks away especially on the 6 creed haha.
     
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    Texasflyer

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    I kinda stopped listening to eric, more of a buy my tuner now than just shooting and being precise loading. But i havent watched in awhile. Its like setting up a survey level to me, you adjust one way and get it about where ya want it and finish with the other axis.
     
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    Choid

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    Not my area lol, idk, but the way he explained it is seating depth “nodes” are like sine waves so you go in and out of “nodes” at various seating depths

    eta: I think this is where he explains it:

    It's certainly possible, but it is hard to imagine that the wave is going to be similar for each barrel/cartridge etc. That said, I will freely admit that I am not as anal about reloading as a lot of guys, and that I am looking for a load that will give me what I am looking for, and would not necessarily be good enough for other people. But I enjoy it, and my loads don't cause me undue frustration while shooting, and seem to reflect my performance, which is good enough for me.
     
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    Baron23

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    I kinda stopped listening to eric, more of a buy my tuner now than just shooting and being precise loading. But i havent watched in awhile. Its like setting up a survey level to me, you adjust one way and get it about where ya want it and finish with the other axis.
    Yeah, he has a pay subscription svc now....I just watch his older YT vids on some topics and sort of like his approach.

    Not seen any of his later pay subscription vids.
     
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    thestoicmarcusaurelius

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    It's certainly possible, but it is hard to imagine that the wave is going to be similar for each barrel/cartridge etc. That said, I will freely admit that I am not as anal about reloading as a lot of guys, and that I am looking for a load that will give me what I am looking for, and would not necessarily be good enough for other people. But I enjoy it, and my loads don't cause me undue frustration while shooting, and seem to reflect my performance, which is good enough for me.
    If you’re going for simplicity; it doesn’t get much more simple than starting out at mag length and adjusting your seating depth down in .003 increments. Do groups at each seating depth and when you find one that works especially if you find one that has room on each side then you’re done. Just pick a powder charge where you’re happy with pressure and velocity.
     
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    Choid

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    If you’re going for simplicity; it doesn’t get much more simple than starting out at mag length and adjusting your seating depth down in .003 increments. Do groups at each seating depth and when you find one that works especially if you find one that has room on each side then you’re done. Just pick a powder charge where you’re happy with powder and velocity.
    There are a lot of easily choosable depths, whether SAAMI, mag length, boattail out of the neck etc. My point isn't that I am not willing to look for seating depth, but that I am constantly surprised that many modern bullets, especially hybrids, seem to shoot about the same from 20-110 out. I shouldn't be surprised, because Litz says basically the same thing, but I have a hard time understanding that in conjunction with this idea that seating nodes are .006 wide. He may be totally right, but that may be because he thinks that the difference between .4 and .42. groups is seating depth, when for me it is likely shooter error even much larger than that.

    My tendency is to pick a length, try to find a powder charge, then decide whether that combination is satisfactory, or whether I need to monkey with seating depth. Generally I do not, but again, my standards may be low. I used to monkey with it much more, but I never got much better results.
     
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    918v

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    There are a lot of easily choosable depths, whether SAAMI, mag length, boattail out of the neck etc. My point isn't that I am not willing to look for seating depth, but that I am constantly surprised that many modern bullets, especially hybrids, seem to shoot about the same from 20-110 out.

    But you don’t mean that the seating depth node is that wide?
     

    Choid

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    But you don’t mean that the seating depth node is that wide?
    No, I have no idea how wide they are. I just find that within that range it is pretty easy to get the newer bullets shooting well, and there are often reasons to be at various places within that range. That is all I mean.
     
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    supercorndogs

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    6.5 Creed with a 140, h4350, and hornday brass. This is such a we'll used combo I don't do much work up for it anymore. There is a node around 41.3-41.7. I would run OAL test at 41.4, then load 3 shots in .2s 41.3 up to 42. You will see a POI shift around 41.6-41.9, then there is another node around 42. Back away from the POI shift, if you length tested already, rock on, if you didn't tune your groups with OAL.
     
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    Baron23

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    I would run OAL test at 41.4, then load 3 shots in .2s 41.3 up to 42.
    Thanks for the reply....but I'm not sure I understand.

    OAL test?? at 41.4?

    Then test powder load starting at .1 gr less at 41.4?

    Not sure I understand what you mean by OAL test. Just enuring that my initial bullet seating depth (e.g. .020) fits the mag length without compressing the load or....???

    I am/had planned on starting about 39.5 with .3 gr increments until I hit 40 then go up with .2 gr increments (bit more cautious at higher powder drops is all that's about).

    I know...well, I think I know that down around 39.5 is probably a bit of a waste of time.

    Maybe just start at 40 grains, save some components, and increment up by .2 gr to 42.

    Factory Berger Hybrid and Hndy ELD-M loaded ammo is in the 2800-2850 or so range and shoots well. I was sort of thinking that I would look for that speed, look to see if there was any "flat" spot....yeah, given how statistically insignificant 3 shots at a load value would be....look at the groups, pick an area and see if I could zero in on powder load a bit better (i.e. 5 shots with .1 gr increments).

    THEN mess with seating depth to see if I can improve groups.

    Am I way off base?

    Its not hard to understand but I'm finding that 10 different people will have 10 different recommendations....LOL

    Cheers
     

    Baron23

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    By OAL test, I mean jump test.

    Most people all end up at the same place. I think the 42.something node is going to be your 2850 area, or my barrels were slow.

    It looks like you had a good plan all laid out already. I was just pointing to a short cut.

    Thank you and I appreciate both the info and your taking the time to reply.

    Cheers
     

    SD Carpenter

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    I literally just did your exact methods yesterday yoloing off YouTube videos lol. I'm glad I'm not the only one overthinking this reloading thing, and ending up with the same results
     

    IDR

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    Baron,

    I would standardize on Lapua small rifle primer brass. There is only 1/2 grain difference in water weight between Hornady and Lapua fired brass in my chamber but the Lapua is measurably more accurate. I use a 140 ELD or Nosler RDF in the unfired Lapua brass and 144 Bergers in the once fired brass. I could not use much load data from the Hornady brass when I switched over to Lapua. I am using RL16.
     
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    Baron23

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    Baron,

    I would standardize on Lapua small rifle primer brass. There is only 1/2 grain difference in water weight between Hornady and Lapua fired brass in my chamber but the Lapua is measurably more accurate. I use a 140 ELD or Nosler RDF in the unfired Lapua brass and 144 Bergers in the once fired brass. I could not use much load data from the Hornady brass when I switched over to Lapua. I am using RL16.
    Haha....got 500 virgin Lapua 6.5 cases you want to sell? :)

    They’re rather rare these days, no?
     

    supercorndogs

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    Yes, pretty much what you use is what you can find. Hornady makes good brass, but not as good as Lapua.