Thought I would start a thread on a very good article I just read in the April 2011 Handloader Magazine, Pg 68, "Mistakes and Misconceptions, The Reality of Brass Life and Pressure" by John Barsness. I imagine it would be a boring read by many on here who have heaped up so many years of experience reloading rifle rounds. For me (only been loading rifle rounds about 6 years, started loading handgun over 25 years ago), it was a very enlightening read. I still have a lot to learn I guess!
I never knew not to full length resize my new brass before measuring and trimming up to minimum OAL for consistency. I've resized many a new brass not knowing I could well be ruining them, I thought I was trueing them up? Also have always weighed each powder charge thinking I would have the most consistent loads. He swears powder charges can vary by as much as a full .5 to 1 grain without problems and states it is all about harmonics of the barrel vibrations! He says you don't believe it, just try varying powder charges on a proven accurate load up and down .5 grain and you will see no effect? I plan to test this theory!
I think over the last few months, I've learned a few things that will change my rifle loading practices (some learned here on the forum).
1. Going to start neck sizing my brass and just bump the shoulder back enough to chamber the round with little resistence. I've always full length resized and probably been shortening my brass life in doing so not to mention stretching my brass causing more trimming.
2. After testing, going to start using my powder measure to throw charges and not worry so much about hand weighing each charge, at least with powder the meters well.
3. Going to stop wasting my time loading three rounds of each powder charge to shoot groups and start doing the "ladder"'"Audette" method to find the sweet spot before going to shooting groups. I've seen posts here with guys who do this and it seems logical. I wish I had a quarter for all the three round groups I've tested over the last 6 years!
I see a lot of guys post on here looking for information myself included. One piece of advice I think is well worth saying is besides multiple reloading manuals, books, and internet forums, a guy can't go wrong by reading Handloader Magazine each month. Good Stuff in it each month!