Any way to get better accuracy without going closer to the lands?

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
I have a Remington 700 varmint and I was trying to develop loads with the 178 gr ELD-X. Using 42.6 gr Varget with a COAL of 2.800". I could not seem to group to well, and that charge was my best. With this bullet, my lands are at 2.924" OAL, and my mag can hold 2.845". Is there any tips or tricks you guys know of that do not include switching bullets or getting new base metal etc.?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hiker12

supercorndogs

Ham Fisted Gorilla
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 17, 2014
8,300
8,723
Colorado
I should have specified. I have tried different lengths up to my max mag length. I am wondering what can be done without having to make lengths longer than max mag length.

In my experience nothing. If different charges and lengths yielded nothing promising, you would be chasing your tail trying to get closer anyway. Some guns just don't like some bullets. You could load some up and single feed them to see, but switching bullets is probably your best option.
 

Howland

Nimrod
Full Member
Minuteman
Sep 30, 2017
793
754
Upstate South Carolina
The latest Hodgdon shows 41.0 - 45.0 so you're definitely not running hot. That is assuming you have a .308 which it sounds like based on OAL.

I have a 700 in .30-06 that likes Nosler Ballistic Tips .010" off the lands and am not constrained by mag length, they go into and feed out of the mag just fine.

Also, can you define what you mean by, "could not seem to group to well?" My 700 runs that load around 5/8 - 3/4 MOA and I'm perfectly happy, but that might not be so if I were trying to place in a match.

Have you tried other powders, maybe something faster or slower? I was using IMR 4895 in my 700. Just as a particular rifle likes some bullets but not others, the same is true of powders. Have you had excellent results with Varget using other bullets in a similar weight class? Do you know what the twist rate is?

I'll follow this with great interest because I just picked up 1,000 178gr ELD-X for the long range BC that will double as an effective hunting bullet, even though I have yet to load or fire one round. I'd like to use those instead of the BTs in the 700, an M1A, an RPR and an AR-10.
 

Hiker12

Private
Minuteman
May 12, 2017
97
24
I have excellent results with my 308 using
Sierra 168 HPBT match
Run this with a .005" jump
IMR 4895 42.3 grn
Lapua brass
Neck size with Redding die with bushing
I use a custom barrel Bartlien

My question is on your Rem 700 are you using a factory Remington barrel?
Factory barrel have a slightly larger chamber/throat to accommodate different manufacturers ammo. This would effect your accuracy. Also would explain the measurements of your lands in relation to the box mag measurements . Need more info On your rifle itself
 
Last edited:

Hiker12

Private
Minuteman
May 12, 2017
97
24
I have a Remington 700 varmint and I was trying to develop loads with the 178 gr ELD-X. Using 42.6 gr Varget with a COAL of 2.800". I could not seem to group to well, and that charge was my best. With this bullet, my lands are at 2.924" OAL, and my mag can hold 2.845". Is there any tips or tricks you guys know of that do not include switching bullets or getting new base metal etc.?
See my post . Your problem sound familiar might be able to help need more info
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
I have excellent results with my 308 using
Sierra 168 HPBT match
Run this with a .005" jump
IMR 4895 42.3 grn
Lapua brass
Neck size with Redding die with bushing
I use a custom barrel Bartlien

My question is on your Rem 700 are you using a factory Remington barrel?
Factory barrel have a slightly larger chamber/throat to accommodate different manufacturers ammo. This would effect your accuracy. Also would explain the measurements of your lands in relation to the box mag measurements . Need more info On your rifle itself
It is a factory Remington barrel. They have a long throat. If I could afford it I would throw a new barrel on there. Darn Remington!
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
The latest Hodgdon shows 41.0 - 45.0 so you're definitely not running hot. That is assuming you have a .308 which it sounds like based on OAL.

I have a 700 in .30-06 that likes Nosler Ballistic Tips .010" off the lands and am not constrained by mag length, they go into and feed out of the mag just fine.

Also, can you define what you mean by, "could not seem to group to well?" My 700 runs that load around 5/8 - 3/4 MOA and I'm perfectly happy, but that might not be so if I were trying to place in a match.

Have you tried other powders, maybe something faster or slower? I was using IMR 4895 in my 700. Just as a particular rifle likes some bullets but not others, the same is true of powders. Have you had excellent results with Varget using other bullets in a similar weight class? Do you know what the twist rate is?

I'll follow this with great interest because I just picked up 1,000 178gr ELD-X for the long range BC that will double as an effective hunting bullet, even though I have yet to load or fire one round. I'd like to use those instead of the BTs in the 700, an M1A, an RPR and an AR-10.
I haven’t tried new powders yet, and my powder is crushing with the 2.800” COAL at my load. I may hand feed some longer ones closer to the lands and see what happens. I may need new powder or just try a different bullet.
 

supercorndogs

Ham Fisted Gorilla
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 17, 2014
8,300
8,723
Colorado
I haven’t tried new powders yet, and my powder is crushing with the 2.800” COAL at my load. I may hand feed some longer ones closer to the lands and see what happens. I may need new powder or just try a different bullet.

In my experience anyway, changing powders didn't do anything. I would speculate that if it did, it was due to failed load development with the first powder. When starting with a new rifle it is often prudent to try several different projectiles and see which one the rifle likes best.
 

tnbowhunter

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 18, 2012
105
28
Middle Tennessee
+ 1 for 175 Sierra MatchKing. I had the same problem in 2 different Remington factory chambers. Insanely long throat. Went back to feeding it 175 smk at 2.800-2.850 (doesn’t really matter in mine) and it went back to shooting great. In my experience with them they dont mind a jump at all. I haven’t had a Remington 308 yet that didn’t like 44 grains varget in Lapua Brass with a 175 matchking
 
  • Like
Reactions: tnichols

softcock

novice judgmental prick
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 24, 2006
1,679
1,449
Oregon
I have a Remington 700 varmint and I was trying to develop loads with the 178 gr ELD-X. Using 42.6 gr Varget with a COAL of 2.800". I could not seem to group to well, and that charge was my best. With this bullet, my lands are at 2.924" OAL, and my mag can hold 2.845". Is there any tips or tricks you guys know of that do not include switching bullets or getting new base metal etc.?
-
I just went threw this with a factory 5r Rem . and working up a load for the 178 eldx's . / Once fired , neck sized win. Brass / reloader 15 power .
rifle totally stock factory rem. except threw away the factory trigger group in the trash and put in a Timney TG .

Rem. 5R barrel has a pretty good throat . and keeping the Rounds COAL all within the factory Mag.box limits . It would not even start to tighten-up sub MOA with the 178 eldx's till I started to bump over 43.7 grains . Finally settled on ( 44.2 grain ) reloader 15 for load .

The 155 Scenars went good out the factory 5R also when you got it moving up there on the Vel. .
But 175 SMK's is the most forgiving bullet out there, espesially for internal mag. box COAL restriction and long jumps in factory barrel throat . working loads . 2580 and 2700 are great Vel. nodes, An all-around great accurate Bullet for the .308 .
.
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
-
I just went threw this with a factory 5r Rem . and working up a load for the 178 eldx's . / Once fired , neck sized win. Brass / reloader 15 power .
rifle totally stock factory rem. except threw away the factory trigger group in the trash and put in a Timney TG .

Rem. 5R barrel has a pretty good throat . and keeping the Rounds COAL all within the factory Mag.box limits . It would not even start to tighten-up sub MOA with the 178 eldx's till I started to bump over 43.7 grains . Finally settled on ( 44.2 grain ) reloader 15 for load .

The 155 Scenars went good out the factory 5R also when you got it moving up there on the Vel. .
But 175 SMK's is the most forgiving bullet out there, espesially for internal mag. box COAL restriction and long jumps in factory barrel throat . working loads . 2580 and 2700 are great Vel. nodes, An all-around great accurate Bullet for the .308 .
.
I used brand new Winchester brass, and at my 42.6 grains the powder was crushing a good bit. Is this something I should worry about? The highest charge I tested was 43 grains and showed no pressure signs so I think I would be good for pressure, just don't know about the powder crushing.
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
+ 1 for 175 Sierra MatchKing. I had the same problem in 2 different Remington factory chambers. Insanely long throat. Went back to feeding it 175 smk at 2.800-2.850 (doesn’t really matter in mine) and it went back to shooting great. In my experience with them they dont mind a jump at all. I haven’t had a Remington 308 yet that didn’t like 44 grains varget in Lapua Brass with a 175 matchking
What kind of groups were you getting with that load?
 

Ferris Pewler

Gunny Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 1, 2017
505
262
Middle Tennessee
If you can't find the 175 SMK, or want to save some $, the Nosler 175 Custom Comp is Very similar. It has the same BC and the base to ogive measurement was .010" difference from the lots that I have. For me, they don't group quite as well but only I notice at 600+ yards.
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
If you can't find the 175 SMK, or want to save some $, the Nosler 175 Custom Comp is Very similar. It has the same BC and the base to ogive measurement was .010" difference from the lots that I have. For me, they don't group quite as well but only I notice at 600+ yards.
I will have to give those a look as well. I plan on shooting F class matches which around here are around 600 yards, but that may be a good 300 or so yard round for me.

Anyone have luck getting tight groups with an AR platform? I have a DPMS LR 308 with an aftermarket upper, and I tried developing loads for that with the same bullet and I really just couldn't get a group that was less than an inch and a half.
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
175 gn HPBT SMK 43.5 gn Varget with a 2.800" OAL. Factory Remington 700 5R .308. I'm pretty happy with those results. I'm trying to develop something with the IMR 4166 powder now.
Do you like that 5R barrel? How much better is it compared to a 6 groove, or is it that noticeable? I have been interested in them.
 

ophious

Hallway Monitor
Full Member
Minuteman
It's been the most accurate rifle I have owned out of the box. I hear they are hit an miss though. Some shoot really great and some are just ok. I've been right next to the 6.5 guys in practice hitting 6" plates at 1000yds. Given I'm clicking at 12.5 ish and they are around 8 mils holdover. I'm having a Short Action Customs 6.5mm being built now though. I'm prob going to keep this bad boy for hunting if I can ever have someone take me under their wing.

Remington 700 5R .308 20"
La Rue Tactical A-PEG Grip
XLR Element Chassis
JP Enterprises Bennie Cooley Brake
Spuhr Sp-4001 Scope Mount
Kahles K624i SKMR-3 MRAD
Timiney 517 @ 1.5lbs
Standard Harris Bi Pod
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
It's been the most accurate rifle I have owned out of the box. I hear they are hit an miss though. Some shoot really great and some are just ok. I've been right next to the 6.5 guys in practice hitting 6" plates at 1000yds. Given I'm clicking at 12.5 ish and they are around 8 mils holdover. I'm having a Short Action Customs 6.5mm being built now though. I'm prob going to keep this bad boy for hunting if I can ever have someone take me under their wing.

Remington 700 5R .308 20"
La Rue Tactical A-PEG Grip
XLR Element Chassis
JP Enterprises Bennie Cooley Brake
Spuhr Sp-4001 Scope Mount
Kahles K624i SKMR-3 MRAD
Timiney 517 @ 1.5lbs
Standard Harris Bi Pod

That sounds pretty good to me. I have a Hornady 168 gr bthp load that shoots half Moa with this 700, but I just don't like the BC on the bullet. I wish I could find a place to shoot a thousand.. the range at my place stops at 300 or so.
 

Hiker12

Private
Minuteman
May 12, 2017
97
24
It is a factory Remington barrel. They have a long throat. If I could afford it I would throw a new barrel on there. Darn Remington!

I ran into this problem before with a friend of mine . He also had a Remington SA with factory barrel. I was helping him reload found the lands measurements longer than the mag measurements. His groups were not as tight as he liked until he bought a Bartlien barrel. Unfortunately you will not get the accuracy that you are looking for with that barrel.
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
I ran into this problem before with a friend of mine . He also had a Remington SA with factory barrel. I was helping him reload found the lands measurements longer than the mag measurements. His groups were not as tight as he liked until he bought a Bartlien barrel. Unfortunately you will not get the accuracy that you are looking for with that barrel.
I kind of thought it would boil down to that. The money ill have invested into load development will grow and grow, so I just as well drop out of college and put money towards what really matters. Ha!
 

ophious

Hallway Monitor
Full Member
Minuteman
I guess I really didn't answer the question about 6 vs 5. But that's a long debated topic for sure. In theory it promotes less projectile deformation. Also it is stated that the transition from the lands to the grooves are sloped less which makes cleaning much easier. Could you tell much of a difference if you have both exactly same spec rifles next to eachother just one with and one without.... Prob pretty negligible in a .308 platform. But you aren't shooting .308 much farther than 1000yds either.
 

ophious

Hallway Monitor
Full Member
Minuteman
That sounds pretty good to me. I have a Hornady 168 gr bthp load that shoots half Moa with this 700, but I just don't like the BC on the bullet. I wish I could find a place to shoot a thousand.. the range at my place stops at 300 or so.
Well I'm in Los Angeles, so our ranges around here typically don't either. We find ourselves many times finding rocks up in the hills past the 600 yd range limitation. Sometimes just head out to the desert is typically the best way to get out there.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Night King

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
I know this is a different subject, but do you think it is better completely clean your barrel, or just scrub it once or twice and leave copper in minor indents to make everything smooth?
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
Well I'm in Los Angeles, so our ranges around here typically don't either. We find ourselves many times finding rocks up in the hills past the 600 yd range limitation. Sometimes just head out to the desert is typically the best way to get out there.
Im in Nebraska, you would think with as much space as we have we'd have more public 1000 yard ranges. Oh well
 
  • Like
Reactions: dud_adam

spife7980

Luchador
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 10, 2017
10,193
9,459
Central TX
I know this is a different subject, but do you think it is better completely clean your barrel, or just scrub it once or twice and leave copper in minor indents to make everything smooth?

Clean it when you need to. The thing about cooper and carbon building up is that it will continue to, it won’t just fill in the low spots. When you clean it, take it all the way to clean. But don’t do it unless you notice accuracy degrading. I’ll do it every few hundred rounds every few months.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gigamortis

Hiker12

Private
Minuteman
May 12, 2017
97
24
I know this is a different subject, but do you think it is better completely clean your barrel, or just scrub it once or twice and leave copper in minor indents to make everything smooth?

Everyone will probably have a different opinion on this subject. Your barrel will shoot better fouled up to a point. I will clean my 308 barrel every 200 to 250 rounds. I use hoppys#9 then Montana's bore shine . My 308 barrel is a Bartlien 1:10 twist
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
Everyone will probably have a different opinion on this subject. Your barrel will shoot better fouled up to a point. I will clean my 308 barrel every 200 to 250 rounds. I use hoppys#9 then Montana's bore shine . My 308 barrel is a Bartlien 1:10 twist
That being said, would you clean it more often when developing loads for it? or would it be more consistent fouled?
 

cattleman99

Snyder Precision LLC
Supporter
Commercial Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 28, 2018
3,186
1,063
Lincoln, NE
www.snyderprecision.com
Clean it when you need to. The thing about cooper and carbon building up is that it will continue to, it won’t just fill in the low spots. When you clean it, take it all the way to clean. But don’t do it unless you notice accuracy degrading. I’ll do it every few hundred rounds every few months.
I have always been sort of anal about cleaning barrels.. never really put thought into whether I should or shouldn't. Ill run her dirty for a good while and see what it prefers.
 

Hiker12

Private
Minuteman
May 12, 2017
97
24
I would just leave it fouled like I mentioned before up to 200 - 250 rounds and just work your load. It is not really great to keep throughing a cleaning rod down the bore. But when you do clean it clean it. Just don't clean it every time you shoot it messes up the crown at the muzzle. This is especially true for M1 garand , M1 carbine and M1A rifles. One has to stick the cleaning rod muzzle first.
 

tnbowhunter

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 18, 2012
105
28
Middle Tennessee
What kind of groups were you getting with that load?

The one I still have is a 1/2 moa rifle with that load (44 varget 2.830) out to 700 yards which is as far as I’ve shot it. Factory barreled action 5r milspec sits in a bedded grayboe renegade. Most accurate factory rifle I’ve owned. Shoots about the same with 42 grain imr 4064
 

softcock

novice judgmental prick
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 24, 2006
1,679
1,449
Oregon
I used brand new Winchester brass, and at my 42.6 grains the powder was crushing a good bit. Is this something I should worry about? The highest charge I tested was 43 grains and showed no pressure signs so I think I would be good for pressure, just don't know about the powder crushing.
-
Only reason I am using the 178eldx's is for hunting . I would be using Scenars or 175 smk's for paper and steel .
You will get Brass form fired once and you will get a little more volume . I using reloader15 and you using Varget . They pretty similar, and Varget maybe just a ' tiny bit slower ' than realoader15 . . Also ? Varget might also be tiny bigger on the powder grainuar size, over RL-15 grain size .

But my Primers are still looking good @ 44.2 , with round edge and just a tiny bit of Pin cratering . Cold bore shot and group size very concistant every time also .
.
 

tnichols

Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Jan 23, 2010
4,245
8,659
57
Morley IA
i kind of breezed through this, but don't be afraid to try some FGMM 175's. If your rifle likes them, its tough to justify reloading when you can purchase them for $1 per shipped. Just my .02
 

tnbowhunter

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 18, 2012
105
28
Middle Tennessee
I did also swap the factory trigger for a jewel. I used to be one to clean after every time shooting a rifle but after lack of time and some reading on it I changed it up to a thorough cleaning after every couple hundred rounds or so. Cleaning less alone seemed to help make groups more consistent in that rifle. I’ve got others that shoot best when they are clean seems like so I would try both ways and let your rifle tell you what it likes

The long throats are aggravating but I do think you will find a bullet/ powder combo that shoots well enough for your liking. I would love to rebarrel mine with a good barrel that I could load to the lands with but it shoot so good it seems like it would be a waste of money. I’ve only got around 1500 rounds through it so trying to hold off as long as possible.
 

tnbowhunter

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 18, 2012
105
28
Middle Tennessee
i kind of breezed through this, but don't be afraid to try some FGMM 175's. If your rifle likes them, its tough to justify reloading when you can purchase them for $1 per shipped. Just my .02

This is good advise. At least to try and see if your rifle likes them. I think palmetto has them on sale right now for dirt cheap too!
 

Mike_in_FL

Supporter
Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
  • Feb 29, 2008
    1,132
    249
    Tampa Bay, FL
    With this bullet, my lands are at 2.924" OAL, and my mag can hold 2.845". Is there any tips or tricks you guys know of that do not include switching bullets or getting new base metal etc.?

    Yes, buy a different magazine. You can take the front plate out of an actual AI mag as I have heard, to gain length. The ARC magazines state they're 2.97 internally. I think Accurate mags are close to 2.9 but not sure. I have Alpha Type 2's which will allow you to go to 2.965 but I can't recommend them due to hit or miss quality and lack of CS.

    My 700 throat is a tad longer than yours. I ran 178 AMAX at 2.925 and run the 178 BTHP at 2.900. However, as people have said you can run a 175 SMK at 2.800 without any problem. My rifle loves them at that length in Lapua brass and 42.5 gr. of Varget.

    Keep in mind, if you're going to run cartridges out of a magazine at these lengths, you will probably need t have your action notched on the bottom for the bullet tips to pass through. Jeff at CDI did my action when he was installing bottom metal in a different stock for me. It's not much and you can probably do it with a Dremel if you'e careful.
     

    padom

    SuperMod
    Staff member
    Moderator
    Supporter
    Full Member
    Minuteman
  • Mar 13, 2013
    10,397
    5,249
    Southeastern, Pennsylvania
    IMR 4064 was my go to powder in my factory 700 308 with H4895 being a close second. Both were equally accurate but 4064 was faster. Lapua brass 4064 and 178 Amax hammered at 2.88 which was just under max AICS mag length.

    The 178 Amax (eld) liked to be closer to the lands to be accurate while 175smk liked to be at 2.81.
     

    cattleman99

    Snyder Precision LLC
    Supporter
    Commercial Supporter
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Mar 28, 2018
    3,186
    1,063
    Lincoln, NE
    www.snyderprecision.com
    10-4 that's what I was getting to and just wondering myself where you were at with the node.

    I've been working up a load for one of my rifles and had similar results as you. The longer the OGIVE/OAL while trying to push higher MV - my groups got worse. Even with an ES of 11 and SD of 4.6 on a 7 shot group.

    OGIVE/OAL
    .040"
    .030"
    .020"
    .010" - Off the lands
    Then going the other way shortening OGIVE/OAL and tuning my powder charges( actually counting the last .2gr of powder per pellet) has produced tighter groups. For me that is

    While doing these test I also weighed and measuring my individual bullets and brass to ensure repeatability in my test. I was surprised at the variance in weights of both within the same lot #'s.

    I also only do load development on at least once fired brass. New brass can change things.

    As a side note to add - I have found the more down this sub 1/2 MOA and .1gr rabbit hole I go, that sometimes I just suck at shooting groups. LOL

    Not sure if any of that helps but just wanted to share things I've tried.

    Good luck ?
    I hear ya. I’ll look about getting really technical with specs and see how that helps. I’ve got an RPR I got look with, first hand load I tried shoots constantly 1/4 MOA. I guess the 308 it just a different animal shooting wise. I’m sure a lot of it is me. It’s surprising to me with MV’s that consistent that your load still didn’t do well for you.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Night King

    cattleman99

    Snyder Precision LLC
    Supporter
    Commercial Supporter
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Mar 28, 2018
    3,186
    1,063
    Lincoln, NE
    www.snyderprecision.com
    IMR 4064 was my go to powder in my factory 700 308 with H4895 being a close second. Both were equally accurate but 4064 was faster. Lapua brass 4064 and 178 Amax hammered at 2.88 which was just under max AICS mag length.

    The 178 Amax (eld) liked to be closer to the lands to be accurate while 175smk liked to be at 2.81.
    That’s interesting. I may have to try a new powder, after I try 175 smk’s.