I have wanted to achieve certain milestones in my shooting. At first I wanted to be able to shoot a lot. The best way to afford this was reloading. I bought my Rock Chucker kit and some powder, primers and bullets and I was in business. As time went on, I wanted to shoot a lot and be very accurate and that is where the adventure begins.
"Accuracy" means different things to different people. For most guys I think it starts as the need to hit the beer can with the 22 when you're 10. Then it becomes kill the deer at 100 yards. For me it has become a goal of sub moa performance every time I pull the trigger. Preferably better sub moa performace than the other guy at the match.
Repeatable accuracy is the art of getting everything the same. If your componets are the same and are assembled at the same high quality level, you stand a much better chance of your bullets going to the same point of impact each time. Assuming of course that your conditions remain constant and you don't screw the pooch when you pull the trigger.
These are the parts that go into making the round. The brass, primer, powder, and bullet should always be from the same production lot as all the other rounds in your run. That means that they were made at the same time, from the same materials and on the same equipment as all the other componets in that production run. Even then there can be varriance in the size, shape, weight etc with in the group.
Again everything needs to be as much "a like" as possible. The brass should be clean. The primer holes the same diamiter. The brass should all be the same length and be equally deburred and uniformaly concentric. Perfectly equal neck tension is a big help in eqaulizing preseasure and volicity. Are you full length resizing? Do them all. Are you just bumping it back and doing the neck? Again, what ever method, do it the same way each time. Don't mix and match the ammo preperation method in your batch.
Primers should be set the same in every round. If you set them flush, all of them should be flush, if you set them to maximum depth, then they all need to be maxium depth. Check each round as you do it. Powder, every charge should be weighed, no exceptions.
Bullet seatting. Here is a tricky and sometimes over looked accuracy killer. The OAL of the cartrige that your reloading manual lists as the proper length, is just the industry standard. IT IS NOT the best lenght for accuracy in most guns. Simply put, the standard OAL is a size that ALL guns, chambered in that cartridge will accept and fire. So what is the best OAL? That depends. If you are shooting a mag fed semi-auto, you obviously can't make the round to long since it has to fit the magizine. In a bolt gun you have more freedom with the length.
Most guns shoot better if the bullet touches the rifleing when the round is chambered. There are several reasons for this: 1. the bullet is more likely to be pointed and started straight down the barrel 2. the presure will be more uniform in the chamber when the round is touched off, this helps equalize velocity. You need a gauge to determine the optimal depth. A word of caution though. Sometimes you can't have the bullets touching the lands for other reasons. Match grade bulletts that are only going to be used on the bench or shooting range can be set into the lands. Hunting or other field ammo still should be backed off, at least a few thousands. The reason is that if the bullet is set into the lands, and you then attempt to eject the round without fireing it, you can leave the bullet stuck in the barrel and eject the brass and dump all the powder out. To avoid this problem get the bullet as close to the lands as possible and then bump it back a tad farther. Then do them all the same. Keep in mind that each bullet manufacture has differrences in the ojive (curvature) of their bullets and you will need to refigure the OAL every time you try a different bullet.
Accurate reloading requires high quality componets, consistent technique and proceedures in order to produce uniform ammo capable of going to the same point of impact every time you pull the trigger.