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Thread: Resting on the Shooting bag, good enough ??

  1. #1
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Default Resting on the Shooting bag, good enough ??

    I've been noticing a slight spread in my grouping lately,...

    and as I potentially, "overthink it," ....I wonder, do you guys, who do a lot of shooting,...
    worry much about holding down the Forend of the rifle when shooting off of a good bag set-up ??

    my last time out at the range, I was realizing, I am just letting the rifle jump up off the bags
    I used to put more effort into holding the forend down

    So, as I am shooting off a really good set of bags,..it's nestling in really solid, but as I let fly
    I am allowing the muzzle to come up with the force of recoil,..

    and wondering,..is the bullet passing the muzzle before this has an effect,..or not ??

    Thought I'd ask here,..do you guys put a lot of effort into holding down the forend of the stock
    as you pull the trigger,...or is it okay to let it come up, on it's own, off a good rest ??

    we're not talking a big change in grouping, just noticeable to me,...and wondering if I am doing something different
    or having a barrel closing in on 2000 rounds now,..if that is to be expected
    (just talking about an average of less than .75" groups, spreading to an avg of over 1.0" through all the powder load ranges

    there are a lot of potential causes,...I've been pushing the Windy Weather factor a little,...and maybe getting impatient,..
    but , what do you guys think of the barrel jump factor,...

    "No Way, that has an effect,...or Maybe ??
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    The round has already left the barrel by the time therecoil or lift happens. Your grouping change is a result of several factors allat once or one at a time. The weapon could be a factor but in most cases it isoperator induced. It we look at theweapon you should be asking if the barrel has excessive fouling of carbon orcopper, have you changes the rounds? Make and bullet weight. 2000rounds is not really alot down the barrel unless there has been some Minotdamage to the barrel. Cal can be afactor as well some of the smaller / hotter cal will burn out a barrel or headspace faster than the heavier slower rds.

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    Your barrel life "may" be the issue. However, when you say that you focus on holding the fore grip down, you may be inducing the accuracy issue. Gunsmiths spend a lot of time making sure when they bed an action, they take torsional force out of the equation. If you are holding the fore grip down, you are introducing torsional force to the action.

    I personally have found myself doing this, and it is usually caused by fatigue. In a perfect world, your gun would be in a fully supported rest like a lead sled, and the trigger actuated by an air piston. Since this is not the normal situation, human factors will creep in, and cause innaccuracy.
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    Let it ride, the bullet is gone before it bucks. A lot of bench rest shooters place their off hand in a fist under the butt of the stock and make small elevation adjustments with it by adjusting how tight they clench the fist or have it on the ajustment knob at the back of the rest.


    If memory serves we are talking a 270WSM? Iím not well versed with that round but itís a smallish caliber hot round and at 2000 rounds it is possible you are seeing thought erosion. Fowling is also very possible or thought and or muzzle damage from a cleaning rod could also be at fault. Naturally if anything in your loadings has changed, new powder lot, different bullet lot, couldnít find your usual primer or whatever that would more likely be the issue.
     
    Or it could just be a normal ageing progression of your rifle. If nothing in your load has changed over 2000 rounds I would think it normal that your load you tuned to the rifle 2000 rounds ago needs to be redefined. You and I are not the same guys we were ten years ago, the old jeans that used to fit just right then may not fit us worth a hoot now. 2000 rounds ago you had a new rifle and now you have a rifle with 2000 rounds on it, itís no longer the same gun it was when you worked up the load. So it would stand to reason that what worked great then may only work almost great now.
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    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Thanks Guys, I kind of figured it was okay to let it ride, no way it's not clear of the muzzle
    but what I was doing in the past was just keeping enough of a grip with my fingers, to reduce an upward recoil
    just to the point it came straight back more than freely coming up and away
    wasn't really bearing down, but keeping a light hold
    and as mentioned here, I was thinking I should let it go even more,....then just wondering as it comes up off the bag,...is that ok?

    So, the other factors, yes it is my .270wsm
    Can't be fouling, I'm pretty tight on that, fully cleaning to "Not a Speck of Blu remains" everytime I shoot,..
    and I use a nice one pce rod, with bore guide, always have,
    I have heard some say there's such a thing as too much cleaning (?) but I hardly ever use even a brush and only nylon if so
    I've used some J-B paste a few times lately,
    and wondered if it's is "Gathering more copper," as it ages, as I didn't need to ever use more than Butch's and patches in the past
    to get it really clean ?

    everything else is pretty stable, same primers, not a new powder, same batches of Brass,

    Recently I did a bunch of work with 140gr bullets, and couldn't get them to compare to either the 130's or 150's I've had good success with
    I just wrote that off to ,"a bullet my rifle didn't like"
    but now as I'm working some Sierra 130's (a new bullet in 130 gr. tho 130 in Speer, Nosler, have been a favorite)
    I expected it to be pretty tight as it was with the other 130's
    so that's were I started thinking, "This seems like a noticeable spreading of the overall groups"
    So, the bullet make, would be the only really new thing happening,...

    Probably is just a bit of Ageing,...Probably more my own, than the rifle's,...
    I expect it's more myself, not taking my time enough, and just pushing my shooting weather this winter

    It's a glorious day for shooting today,...maybe I can get out there and improve even more
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    At 2000 rounds on that round, you may very well have some throat erosion. You may get some of the accuracy back by loading with a longer OAL to get your distance to rifling back to where it was originally. That is if you have room in your magazine. And yeah, you need to let the rifle rest naturally and recoil as it would in the field. It"s hard to hold a gun down the same each time you fire it and differences cause larger groups. Also the higher pressure a round operates at and the more it's necked down the faster erosion occurs.

  7. #7

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    I agree with the previous comments. Let it ride and put no pressure on the forend. And I would be very surprised if you're not getting some significant throat erosion after 2000 rounds in a 270 WSM. It is a little more overbore than a 7 RM and I burned one of those out in about 1000 rounds or so.

    I used to shoot off bags but anymore I use a bipod and rear bag with my free hand on the rear bag to make slight adjustments as Andy described.

    I've compared Butches Bore Shine to Bore Tech Eliminator and BTE removed more copper after after Butches was showing clean white patches. I've compared BTE to a lot of other products as well and it always got copper out after the others stopped except for Wipeout which is just as good but takes longer. That said I'm not sure how important it is to remove all copper during routine cleaning because most fouling occurs after the first shot and I would say that after 3 or 4 shots your bore has fouled to probably 90% which is when a lot of rifles settle back in after cleaning. I only clean when accuracy starts to fall off, and not every time I shoot. Also, the only time I would use an abrasive like JB's for cleaning is during break-in.
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    OO NOO, You guys cawn't be serious.

    I'm absolutely certain from my own experience that how you hold your rifle has a great deal to do with how it shooteth.

    My rifles all shoot more accurately when I hold the forend. (from underneath.) Because, IMO, that keeps it from jumpin all over the place.

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    Try a bipod up front and bags in the rear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaRifleman View Post
    Also, the only time I would use an abrasive like JB's for cleaning is during break-in.
    here's my...., "OO NOO,..."
    I was So Leery of using that stuff,...
    have only run it thru there twice,... but,...darn stuff like that barely makes sense to me,...

    Oh Well, I did enjoy an Immaculately Windless Day at the range today
    running 130's and 110's,...both Sierra Bullets

    Pretty sure I have a Throat Erosion Factor involved
    Over the entire spread, 7 different powder weights of each
    the best I could pull off was 1.5" average group with the 110 Spitzers, best group .83"
    and 1.0" with the 130's, best single group, being .74"

    this rifle used to provide at least a couple groups under .5" in that much shooting in the past

    So, just as a matter of elimination, when I got the perfect day,...there's no doubt,...the barrel is spreading groups out a little
    unless the Sierra bullets are a significant factor ??

    Oh well, she's still way inside, "Minute of Blacktail,..." right ?
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by kodiakrain View Post
    Oh well, she's still way inside, "Minute of Blacktail,..." right ?
    If you're happy with it, that's what counts. It might be worth taking to a smith for a bore scope for educational purposes. I've got a 25-06 Sendero I bought used and that barrel is cooked but still shootin .5. If you get a new barrel, get it nitrided and it will last a lot longer.
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    Thanks MR,...
    I am happy with the accuracy for hunting,..but really like shooting that rifle for Nice Groups
    it's a Sako 85,...and it has been my "Learning to Reload" rifle,...
    really fun,...as it makes me look better than I am I think,...

    Such a sweet action, I may get a new barrel down the line some

    One disadvantage of Island Life, there aren't any smiths that I know of,...to take a look with borescope

    I am interested in, "the nitrided process" i'll do some research, tho I do have a Nice Load developed for every bullet in the .277 lineup
    so maybe I'll keep killing critters with this one,

    buy a new rifle and caliber, to shoot at paper with,...develop new loads for,...
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    Quote Originally Posted by kodiakrain View Post
    Thanks Guys, I kind of figured it was okay to let it ride, no way it's not clear of the muzzle
    but what I was doing in the past was just keeping enough of a grip with my fingers, to reduce an upward recoil
    just to the point it came straight back more than freely coming up and away
    wasn't really bearing down, but keeping a light hold
    and as mentioned here, I was thinking I should let it go even more,....then just wondering as it comes up off the bag,...is that ok?

    So, the other factors, yes it is my .270wsm
    Can't be fouling, I'm pretty tight on that, fully cleaning to "Not a Speck of Blu remains" everytime I shoot,..
    and I use a nice one pce rod, with bore guide, always have,
    I have heard some say there's such a thing as too much cleaning (?) but I hardly ever use even a brush and only nylon if so
    I've used some J-B paste a few times lately,
    and wondered if it's is "Gathering more copper," as it ages, as I didn't need to ever use more than Butch's and patches in the past
    to get it really clean ?

    everything else is pretty stable, same primers, not a new powder, same batches of Brass,

    Recently I did a bunch of work with 140gr bullets, and couldn't get them to compare to either the 130's or 150's I've had good success with
    I just wrote that off to ,"a bullet my rifle didn't like"
    but now as I'm working some Sierra 130's (a new bullet in 130 gr. tho 130 in Speer, Nosler, have been a favorite)
    I expected it to be pretty tight as it was with the other 130's
    so that's were I started thinking, "This seems like a noticeable spreading of the overall groups"
    So, the bullet make, would be the only really new thing happening,...

    Probably is just a bit of Ageing,...Probably more my own, than the rifle's,...
    I expect it's more myself, not taking my time enough, and just pushing my shooting weather this winter

    It's a glorious day for shooting today,...maybe I can get out there and improve even more
    Of course, I have no idea why your groups aren't as good as you might expect, but then neither do you, and you would probably know more than I do about it. We can only speculate, but it's wiser to blame ourself, rather than the gun, but the latter is the norm.

    WHAT'S THE HARM, in
    "what I was doing in the past was just keeping enough of a grip with my fingers, to reduce an upward recoil
    just to the point it came straight back more than freely coming up and away
    wasn't really bearing down, but keeping a light hold" That''s exactly what I'm talkin about, an doin.

    I say, try it. Things like that are important, regardless of what you hear. Things like "follow through" for example. The gun moves, and the shot moves. Recoil moves the gun. Yeah, it's pretty fast, but it ain't like electricity, and you can't tell me that there is no "opposite reaction" until the bullet leaves the gun.

    A Nother thing is your shooting position. Try shooting a 3 shot group, then go down and check your target, come back and fire two more, at the same target. Odds are, that the 5 shot group will be beeger than it would be if you fired them all from the same exact position..

    There are all kindsa things that can effect your shooting. I've got so many aches and pains, it's a wonder I can shoot at all. Then thars the Trials and Tribulations, I gotta deal with. Sometimes I get hungry too. And right in the middle of a shooting session.

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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    If you're really concerned about your throat, you can try Tubbs throat maintenance system. It smooths out the throat, possibly giving your barrel a little more life.
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    For a rifle to not move until the bullet leaves the muzzle would require the rifle to defy the laws of physics. The bullet cannot be accelerated through the bore without the rifle being accellerated in the opposite direction.

    How you choose to hold the rifle really doesn't matter, but what does matter is that your hold be consistant from shot to shot. Some rifles only show minor differences in POI with different holds, other rifles are noticeably sensitive to different holds.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    For a rifle to not move until the bullet leaves the muzzle would require the rifle to defy the laws of physics. The bullet cannot be accelerated through the bore without the rifle being accellerated in the opposite direction.

    How you choose to hold the rifle really doesn't matter, but what does matter is that your hold be consistant from shot to shot. Some rifles only show minor differences in POI with different holds, other rifles are noticeably sensitive to different holds.
    Well I was just about to say that. Paul is correct, it does move some before the bullet exit, if you watch high speed video you will see the vast majority of the movement and all the bucking upward happens later. Yes, the slight movement before exit will change the bullet path and that is why a consistent hold is vital. To get that consistency from shot to shot off a rest it is best to remove as much inconstant human input as we can. If we are just letting it buck off the bags the odds of holding down on it 3 pounds this time, 7 pounds the next, and 5 pounds the next are all gone.
     
    Follow-through is aimed at improving the shooters consistency not the guns. It helps us to acutely keep on target in the time between when our brain knows the sear broke and we are about to get smacked by recoil. You know the smack is coming long before the fire even starts, if we go lazy and let the POI drift or tense up to take the slap we pull the shot off before the match is even struck. That is why we follow-through and try to keep doing everything we were before the shot even after the shot. You still follow through off a rest even letting it buck. I like it when after the buck it settles back and I have the very same sight picture back, too bad it doesnít happen as often for me as IĎd like.
     
     
     
    Here, I found a 50bmg high speed video for maximum effect, even pushing that big heavy 50 cal down the pipe hardly makes any perceptible movement until we see the flash of gas telling us the bullet is gone.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_FZNCHkd_k
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  17. #17

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    What do your groups do when you hold the rifle the SAME as you did before?
    Mike
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  18. #18
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Good Question Mike,..
    Next time out, I'm going to see if I can exactly duplicate earlier groups

    use a formerly proven bullet/powder combination,...and hold as before, see what I can get

    I have changed bags,...the forward one used to be a Caldwell saddle that was a bit open,...more of a rest, than a sandwich
    (actually both bags earlier were a Caldwell set-up)

    So, I was finger holding the forend for stability probably more than resisting jump, but it still made sense to me to keep
    minor pressure on the stock, down into the bag,...figuring the barrel was still free of that torque (?)
    here's the old set-up



    you can get a feel for how open it was, side to side

    then I was down south for a while,..and bought another set of bags,...a Stoney point front bag,...that I think is awesome
    it really sandwiches the forend,...amazingly stable in comparison to the old Caldwell bags,...
    so the temptation to let the forend be on it's own, began there
    here's what I'm using now,



    It is noticeable also the "shooting conditions," as a factor (?)
    That's Port Townsend, Washington (was like walking on a golfing green out to your targets,...)
    and the Classic Kodiak, almost needing cleats on your feet, to get out there,...(ha ha)

    and that should be noted,...is not a factor,...(grin) was shooting nicely, those days, on the ice rink
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

  19. #19
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    To put things in perspective if you assume a fixed breach for a 24" long barrel and you move the tip of the barrel by 0.001" any direction that equates to a movement of 2.64" on the target at 100 yds. Or put in reverse terms, to move a shot 0.5" on a target at 100 yds requires moving the tip of the barrel 0.000189" (2 tenths).

    Needless to say, it only takes a very small movement at the tip of the barrel to open up a group and an inconsistant hold shot to shot can very easily open up a group.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    Member GD Yankee's Avatar
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    I'll add my 2 cents FWIW.

    I try to place the fore end in a consistent spot each time. Some rifles shoot better with the bag nearer the action than when placed at the tip of the fore end.

    I always try to prevent the sling swivel from touching the bag or where it could recoil into the bag.

    Some rifles I find shoot better when I rest my hand on the bag and grip the fore end similar to how I would hold it in the field. Particularly with my lighter guns it seems to dampen the bounce off the bag and improves group consistency.

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