28 nosler - can't bring group in any smaller

Feb 2, 2014
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#1
so just finished up a 28 nosler for my friend and we are having trouble getting groups any better than about moa. Brand new rem 700 stainless action, grayboe stock, fully bedded, jewell trigger, 26" xcaliber barrel.

Chamber allows for 2.975 to lands which gives a 3.720 coal.

We have tried shooting many loads from 83.5 to 86 grains of rl33 and 195 bergers. We are getting great velocity spreads with 85-85.5. Just today we shot 12 rounds with different seating depths of both 85 and 85.5 and between all the loads, we had an extreme spread of 12. 3 of the 4 loads had an es of 2 within each load.

We have tried 5 thou in the lands, 5 off the lands, 20 off, 30 off, 40 off and 50 off with nothing showing much better or worse than 1 moa at 100 yds.

We have about 120 rounds through the barrel now, using all new nosler brass. FL sizing with neck bushing giving 3 thou neck tension. Very consistent seating and checking every round with comparator.

Don't really know where to go next. Any suggestions? Here are some pics of groups, not going to label them since they are all similar. If something jumps out, I can look up what load a particular group was.

Thanks in advance.

 
Sep 6, 2006
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Southern California
#4
No pics show up. Is the scope a known good shooter? If it shoots everything into an equally bad group, thats probably your best bet. Small velocity spreads dont mean accuracy either, thats one constituent in the equation. Have you tried other powder?
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#5
Scope is known good, it is a nightforce atacr that we had on his 6.5x47 with no issues. NF base as well. Haven't tried other powders because it seems rl33 is the clear winner for so many other builds I've seen.
 
Aug 7, 2014
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Gillette, WY
#7
To me, pics #2&3 look like you are close and a slight seat depth tweak may work. Also, shoot those groups farther out, 500 yards or so and evaluate again.
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#8
Picture 3 was the promising load from yesterday so we shot it again today, 6 shots (1 cold ore and then 5). That is pic 1. Don't know why it is so much worse.
 

spife7980

Full Member
Feb 10, 2017
3,884
876
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Central TX
#9
Try a different bullet before you burn up too much barrel life? I've been experimenting on my 223 and swore I could get the new 70 rdf to shoot. Well I tried 500 times with 100 different variations and they all shot about like that at best, no where near as good as my 60 bt load. Switched to another bullet, nosler 53, to test last week and in one round of testing it looks more promising than the rdf ever did.
 
Aug 7, 2014
920
138
43
Gillette, WY
#10
Try a different bullet before you burn up too much barrel life? I've been experimenting on my 223 and swore I could get the new 70 rdf to shoot. Well I tried 500 times with 100 different variations and they all shot about like that at best, no where near as good as my 60 bt load. Switched to another bullet, nosler 53, to test last week and in one round of testing it looks more promising than the rdf ever did.
The 195 is tailor made for the 28 nosler, he needs to run an ocw test and tweak his seat depth.
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#11
Yea I'd really like to give the 195 an honest effort because it is ballistically incredible on paper as long as it actually shoots what you point it at.

As for the ocw test, I've actually told him that's what we need to do but he never has and doesn't see why he should now. He wants to keep throwing tweaks at the lod until he funds the magic one. I thought we were close until the horrible 5/6 shot group today.
 
Aug 7, 2014
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Gillette, WY
#12
Yeah, well get him to do this, pick one of those charges that held vertical, seat bullets long and bring press and die to the range, play with seat depth till all side to side gone, then if there is still vertical, go back and or subtract powder, depending on the speed it's yielding now, then group size will be there. Cannot be fun doing load dev on a horse like this when shit is not going your way.
 

ubet

Private
May 28, 2008
81
3
8
Commifornia
#14
Had a 300wsm that I was shooting 185gr vlds out of. At 100yds they would group 1moa, at 300 yards they'd group .5moa. Maybe extended the distance and see what happens with the ocw.

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

 
Feb 2, 2014
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#15
I think we will try to find somewhere longer to shoot. 100 is just so easy because it's 3 mons from the house, where we go for 800-1000 is almost an hour away.
 

reubenski

First Sergeant
Jun 8, 2008
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Colorado Springs, CO
#16
I see what you mean. Looks like you have just about done due diligence on the reloading front. (maybe try another powder or primers...) But barring any action truing or bedding issues I'd start looking at the barrel. It shouldn't take 200 - 300rds to develop a load. I'm about at the point now with reloading and custom rifles that if I can't develop a load in 50 rds or so it's not worth it. Especially with a low barrel life cartridge. Considering a barrel and job costs about $600 - 800, adding another $300 - 500 in running through reloading components is reaching diminishing returns. If RL26 or H1000 don't do anything for you, I might consider pulling that barrel and selling it to offset the cost of a new Krieger.
 
Feb 1, 2011
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#17
Im not sure why he is against an OCW, you are just wasting time and money at this point. If there is a well known load for the cartridge and components you are using then a full work up may not be necessary just go up or down a little and you would surely find the sweet spot. No matter how bad you may want to shoot a certain component if its not working there is no magical fix, especially a seating depth fix(overrated). AT this point there has been enough waste, just start at the load that looks promising and go up and down in .5gr jumps 1.5 gr each way @.020" off the lands. If there isint any consistency between 2 sequential groups move on. Seating depth is overrated as a tool, it wont fix a shit load, no it wont. Also if it doesnt shoot at 100yds it doesnt get better farther out, it cant!!! Lucky group yes but consistent no. Working up a load at greater distances is pointless, to many added variables, to many mixed results. Extended range testing to confirm, yes absolutely, blind testing NO!! Just my .02 from doing this hundreds of times.
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#18
I'm about at the point now with reloading and custom rifles that if I can't develop a load in 50 rds or so it's not worth it.
I agree 100% that's why I'm starting to get kinda pisses. Good thing is, if this barrel won't shoot, it was only $175 test since I chambered it myself. However, this would be the first xcaliber that wouldn't shoot at least.5 moa or better. Not giving up yet, just keep shooting.
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#19
Im not sure why he is against an OCW, you are just wasting time and money at this point. If there is a well known load for the cartridge and components you are using then a full work up may not be necessary just go up or down a little and you would surely find the sweet spot. No matter how bad you may want to shoot a certain component if its not working there is no magical fix, especially a seating depth fix(overrated). AT this point there has been enough waste, just start at the load that looks promising and go up and down in .5gr jumps 1.5 gr each way @.020" off the lands. If there isint any consistency between 2 sequential groups move on. Seating depth is overrated as a tool, it wont fix a shit load, no it wont. Also if it doesnt shoot at 100yds it doesnt get better farther out, it cant!!! Lucky group yes but consistent no. Working up a load at greater distances is pointless, to many added variables, to many mixed results. Extended range testing to confirm, yes absolutely, blind testing NO!! Just my .02 from doing this hundreds of times.
Yea, he is shooting right now with 3 loads on a lower powder charge. If they don't shoot, we will start like it's a fresh barrel with an ocw. As far as a well known load, I've seen TONS of people with a 28 nosler shooting 85-87 grains of rl33 and 195 bergers with great success. That's why I built it and bought 4 lbs of powder. We will see, waste case, an $250 k&p blank will be on the way
 

8nbait

Sergeant
Jan 26, 2013
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Greencastle, PA
#20
I recently got a 30 nosler and had the same problem with retumbo and 215 hybrids. Constantly changing POI and group size from day to day. Every time I thought I had it figured out the next day it would be bad,

I switched to H1000, did a ladder test at 200 yards in .5 grain increments. Took the closest three and loaded three rounds of each to shoot at 200 yards. Took the best group and fired .2 grains on each side of the load at 400 yards. Took best group and shot it at 900 yards. What a difference a powder change made in this rifle. I honestly thought something was wrong the with the rifle because I knew the NXS was not the problem.

Once I switched powder it literally took 25 rounds to get a good load.
 
Feb 2, 2014
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#21
Small update, went down in powder to 84.4 and 84.6 and finally have a decent group. Only got the one picture, but both groups are very similar with identical point of impact on the target. Going to mess with these two and see where we go. Thanks for all the help
 

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Jul 2, 2017
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#22
I recently got a 30 nosler and had the same problem with retumbo and 215 hybrids. Constantly changing POI and group size from day to day. Every time I thought I had it figured out the next day it would be bad,

I switched to H1000, did a ladder test at 200 yards in .5 grain increments. Took the closest three and loaded three rounds of each to shoot at 200 yards. Took the best group and fired .2 grains on each side of the load at 400 yards. Took best group and shot it at 900 yards. What a difference a powder change made in this rifle. I honestly thought something was wrong the with the rifle because I knew the NXS was not the problem.

Once I switched powder it literally took 25 rounds to get a good load.
Having a similar issue with my 30 Nosler and Retumbo. However, I’m running 210 VLDs. I do have some 215 and even some 230 to try as well but was curious about H1000 and even RL33. I’ve got a Kreiger 1:10 finished at 30”. What was your starting load with H1000?
 
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