How to make better rifle ammo
The following recommendations will help you to make more accurate ammo for your rifles. The best part is, they will add little or no cost to your ammo.
1. Use high quality bullets.
Nothing you do in terms of case prep, charge weight measurement, bullet seating, or anything else will overcome inconsistent or poor quality bullets. Using a good bullet is the single most important thing you can do to ensure good accuracy. With that said, there are two manufacturers whose 'bulk-pack' bullets are head and shoulders above the rest. Take the class and find out who they are.
2. Sort cases by headstamp.
Proper case preparation ensures that the cases fit your rifle's chamber, and that every case shares the same external dimensions. But what about the inside dimensions? Cases from different manufacturers may have different wall thicknesses, and feature slightly different case web profiles, resulting in larger or smaller internal case volume. If you mix headstamps and load cartridges with varying internal volumes, pressure and velocity will vary, as well as point of impact. The simplest way to minimize this is to sort your brass by headstamp prior to loading.
3. Find the best C.O.A.L. for your rifle.
Some rifles shoot better when the bullet in the chambered cartridge contacts the rifling lands; and some shoot better with a certain amount of 'jump'. Experiment with the C.O.A.L. to find what works best in your rifle. As always, start with a low charge weight and work up gradually while watching for pressure signs.
4. Try a 'competition' seating die.
Generally speaking, Concentricity = Accuracy. So called 'competition' seating dies keep the bullet precisely aligned during the seating process, resulting in less runout than cartridges loaded using standard seating dies.
5. Try switching primer brands.
I tried a friend's .223 loads and found them to be very accurate. When I tried to duplicate his recipe, I got inconsistent velocity and 2" of vertical stringing at 100 yards. We were both using small rifle primers, but from different manufacturers. I switched to his brand, and group size shrunk to less than 1 MOA.