Monday, January 21, 2013
Sunday Reading - On Saint Martins Day
Been a busy week end so far to say the least. Took a trip to the range on Friday trying to get a handle on my .357 handi rifle. I am having some weird results and keep going back to the drawing board on it. At first I was blaming the scope but now I am thinking perhaps I am attempting to do something that ballistics just won't allow.
Since I am absolutely no good at reading ballistic charts and such anyone want to take a guess at what kind of accuracy you could expect with a 158 grain semi-wadcutter slug and 3.2 grain powder charge of old Bullseye in a .38 caliber round at 100 yards? Ya I am not thinking much either.
To make a long story short I laser sighted the rifle in as usual on the side of my barn at about 25 yards. At 100 yards my shots were falling about 10" low but remained in a nice vertical band less than 2" across. I adjusted the scope up 10 clicks and only gained about an inch up the target but stayed in my vertical band. I adjusted another 10 clicks up and saw no appreciable difference but remained inside the vertical band once again. I adjusted another 10 clicks up and couldn't hit the hillside behind the target. It was that bad.
My guess? a low charge .38 wadcutter round was just never designed to reach out with any accuracy to 100 yards.
I know several of you are slapping your foreheads saying "Well DUH" to me right now but damnit I had to try. I am also thinking that perhaps after the initial 15 to 20 rounds I may have gotten some leading in the barrel that caused even more accuracy problems to develop, especially out at 100 yards.
So the verdict isn't entirely in yet on my .357 deep survival rifle research. My testing was cut short because of a misfire and a bullet actually hung in the barrel. Keep in mind I am currently shooting .38 wadcutters that were hand loaded back in 1992. I have shot some 400 or so of these rounds through one firearm or another in the past year and this was the first misfire I have had. The primer popped but the powder charge didn't. Luckily the bullet did not travel far into the grooves and I was able to easily remove it using a rod with a small ballbearing on the end so as not to scratch the rifling.
All part of my testing actually which is why I am using such old ammunition. I want to know what to expect with decades old hand loaded rounds and this rifle. More research to continue when it warms up once again.
Saturday I had to brush off the gun rally at the state capital. Yes I know but before I even heard about the rally I had promised to take the family to St. Louis Saturday and there was no way I was going to get out of it.
I have some observations from the trip I will be posting tomorrow that are very telling about the current situation. In previous years I spent a large amount of time in St. Louis and am very familiar with at least all the major traffic routes and remember quite vividly what the place was like a decade ago. In the last ten years however I have only been there maybe twice the last time in "08" and things are very different now. I doubt I would really have noticed as much if I hadn't been so familiar with the city in the late 90's and early 00's but from my perspective things have really declined.
More about that later along with an interesting ammo observation at Cabellas in STL and my trip to Grafs reloading store today.
Let me just say right now if you can find primers or any type buy em NOW.
Temps are back down into the 20's today and forecasting single digits tonight. Looks like more snuggle inside time is coming my way once again.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!