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Was it just me???

09 May 2022
@ 12:54 pm (GMT)

Daniel Schindler

I don’t think it was me. Because I have other rifles that easily shoot factory and reloads well under MOA @ 100 yards. I’m not claiming to be the bench rest pro – because I’m not. I know the rifle, load & bullet are doing all the work - but I think it’s fair to say that I’ve contributed to their respectable “hunting” accuracy.

So, here’s the confusion at the range today, requesting your opinion.

Rifle: Weatherby Mark V Hunter, .243 Win, 22” bbl. Trigger is excellent @ 1 lb and very crisp. Leupold 5HD set at 15x. Solid set up at the bench.

At the reloading bench part-time for a few decades, I am not at your skill level. I’m not. I am, however, one case at a time, meticulous, slow and cautious – abiding by the data in the manual. All brass / primers for this range trip were the same.

For my coyote hunt next week, I’ve read a TON of positive references on the 87 gr V MAX. So, optimistic, I bought 2 boxes and worked up 2 different loads – with recommended powders - took both loads to the range.

First load, best 4-shot string I could do was 2.5 inches - left, right, up & down. 3 more, same thing. Very surprised with this. Put them back in the car. Temps today were in the low 50’s so a few minutes between shots kept the barrel reasonably cool.

Second load of 87’s, different powder, same results as the first load. What the heck??? Back to the car.

Opening an older reloading box, I found 8 from a previous / successful range trip, loaded with 75 gr V Max. Numbers 1, 2, 3 & 4 went into .7”. OK, now we’re getting somewhere. 3 more, same result.

Out of reloads (that I trusted), I opened a fresh box of factory, Nosler 70 gr flat based Armageddon’s. First four - four holes touching. Had a sandwich, hydrated, adjusted the scope and sent 3 more down range. .5” center to center. Much of those results belonged to the rifle and shell. I’m the weak link in the chain. Those groupings won’t win a match but will suffice for my needs this week.

I’m aware that each rifle has its preferences. If I had more time – which I don’t – maybe I could find a load with the 87’s that would work. Then again, maybe not?

In your opinion, is it too early to speculate that this rifle prefers 70 – 75 gr bullets? Or, maybe it just dislikes those 87 gr V Max?? I know 3 or 4 more range trips would probably answer my question but work and family won’t allow that.

For this week’s brief hunt, the Nosler factory loads will make the trip. With confidence.

If you’d care to offer any comments, I’d appreciate it. Thanks.



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