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Author Topic: Bullet Tipping  (Read 482 times)

Offline BoBallistic

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Bullet Tipping
« on: June 13, 2015, 07:18:02 AM »
For the last couple of years, I have been studying bullet tipping. The good, the bad, etc...First of all, if you are a long range shooter, probably 600+ yards, then this process should be included in your prep process. All this is shave a few thousand off the tip to make them uniform. They are many tools out there that are just made for Meplat process. The are other benefits in the process and it will definitely shrink your groups size by as much as 33%, but there are swap outs to this. Time and tools, you will need to add this process to your prep time as well. Then you will need to invest into tools for your specific caliber. I have looked on Sinclair and other websites for these tools and they are a few videos on YouTube.

There are some very good bullet out there on the market already. Berger, Sierra, Barnes and Hornady are the big boys and am surprise that none of them address this or offer bullets that have been trimmed and measured. The price would surely go up if they did. But for the average hunter, this process isn't necessary. If you shoot regularly 1 MOA, then you probably not interested in adding a step to you reloading process.

The we get into the hollow points design that most of these good bullets have. After trimmer you need to insure that the hollow point cavity is uniform as well, because one the bullet leaves the barrel, it is on its own!!!  The dynamics change dramatically! so the bullet is flying to its intended target and the boat tail is helping a lot but what about the tip and how is the air flow around it affecting its performance?? Good question. It the hollow point cavity is not uniform, then the laminer flow around the point will cause the bullet to be off center. There is a lot of science behind this area . Sorry I don't work for Boeing...LOL...

We as reloaders pay attention to the brass we are trimming, cleaning, chaffing, etc. we really don't put our bullet under a magnifying glass and check them for deformities. I do look at the ones I am reloading under a 20X magnifier but that is it. I do have a little file that I use if a bullet is way out of wack. But that is as far as I take it...

I am sure Dutch is an expert on this process since he is a long range shooter and he has or does this tipping process in his reloading process. The groups he shoots are amazing and he can tell us all about the good and bad points about this.

How many of you do bullet runout? I have a feeler gauge that I place about half way down the Ogive radius of the loaded bullet and check to see how far I am off. Most of you think I am way off..LOL..but it does matter. I know if my runouts exceed .005" then my groups will not be that good, if it is .002" or smaller, my groups will be very good and tight. I do this for my hunting ammo. I have adapted a process in my reloading technique that cuts down the number of .005 or greater..now most run between .002" and .003" run out. 

The purpose behind this post is just to get us thinking, that reloading is about all the components that make up a loaded round. Everyone thinks primers are the same, think again. I have ran across some good primers and some not so good. Primers can make or break a group or load. So the primer, brass, powder and bullet make up the entire load. A good reloader looks at all the components very closely. This is just one more to pay attention to. Would love to hear your feedback about this...thanks for your time..Bo

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Offline Dutch-Hunter

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2015, 08:46:09 AM »
I'm busted! Yes I have cut meplat's. It's a step not necessary unless as Bo said you're doing ultra-long range or/and competitive shooting. Bo is also correct the bullets available today are much better than a few years ago, so this is an overkill step for 95% of shooters. Like most anything the tools needed can vary from around $100 to near $500. Controlly your runout will help accuracy with less effort. I covered this in my article "Accu-Loading". I will pull those segments out and post them as soon as possible.

Thanks Bo, Always good to stimulate brain activity. But you forgot:

PRACTICE! PRACTICE! PRACTICE!

I feel much better now...




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Offline Madgomer

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2015, 04:44:32 PM »
As you guys shave your bullets, do you worry about creating a mismatch in bullet weight?
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Offline Dutch-Hunter

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2015, 07:49:55 PM »
Mad... When you get to this level in reloading you've already gone through every component by weight and runout. Normally when cutting meplat's your only removing a few thousandths of a grain. Weighing and sorting after is required. I can't stress it enough that this is not necessary for nearly everyone. With the components available now sub 1MOA is very possible with just a little extra effort in your reloading technique.
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Offline BoBallistic

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2015, 08:27:42 PM »
Mad - Dutch is right (again), buy shaving a few thousand off the top, sure you will lose some of your BC...lets say the G1 BC of a 168 gn 30 caliber VLD bullet is .473 and you shave off the top a hair, then your BC will drop down to say .470 or .469. What you lose in BC you will gain in uninformative as your bullet (spins) heads towards its intended target. By having ragged points and going supersonic velocity, everything thing matters. The highest point on your bullet tip would be the first part of the bullet that has to cut through the air and make a path for the rest of the bullet. If one side of it is longer or shorter then it will affect the bullet's flight path. By having the tips all the same point then as the bullet spins, having a smooth tip, then the bullet will spin evenly.

The answer to you question is how much. A few years back I open up a box of 155 gn VLD's and got a hair up my behind and decide to weigh each of them. What was my surprise was the fact that only three or four of them came in exactly at 155.00 gns. Most were heavier and then they did have a few that were under 155.00 by only a few hundreds of a grain. Each year in reloading for my annual Elk, Mule Deer trip out west, I would find out which ones weigh the closes and go from there. Maybe there were 20 out of 50 Barnes 308 TSX bullet that weighed 180.25 gns, then I would use those and come up with loads for my trip. Afterwards I would check the total weight of the loaded round and then do run out. The best of the best got a dot on the bass letting me know which ones to use, because these were the most uniform rounds I had. A few years back I did the same exercise for one of my new to me Cooper M22 in 308. I loaded up 10 rounds that were within a few thousands of a grain of each other and boy did it pan out, 6 of them were in the same hole and one was off buy a sixteenth of an inch and that was me for sure. the last one went though a deer's neck.

So buy shaving off he tips only a few thousands would not affect it at all...try weighing a box yourself of your favorite pills and see what you come up with. Please let us all know what you come up with.  But it does take more time to perform this task. One tip is to take the shortest bullet in the box and then cut the rest of them off to match the shortest bullet in the box?? Not sure how that would work out, then weigh the bullets after shaving.

Go back and read's Dutch Article "Accu-Loading" for better in-site on this topic....Thanks Dutch....
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Offline Madgomer

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2015, 08:36:46 PM »
Thanks guys, as always we appreciate the insight.  I'm a long way from actually executing some of these details, but appreciate the lessons around the physics of all the little variables.  When you consider how these bullets are manufactured, it's actually quite amazing to me that you guys are seeing the consistency within a box that you describe - would love to go see one of those manufacturing lines one day and get a feel for what they have to do in order to set up and maintain that equipment.  Carry on, continue to shave those gnat's whiskers!    --09--0
One of God's greatest gifts to us is
the great outdoors - get out there
and enjoy it!

Offline Dutch-Hunter

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2015, 07:30:18 AM »
Here is the Accu-Loading chapter on bullet prep: http://www.talkhuntin.com/index.php?topic=37104.0

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Offline Madgomer

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Re: Bullet Tipping
« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2015, 11:42:04 AM »
Excellent reading Dutch, many thanks!
One of God's greatest gifts to us is
the great outdoors - get out there
and enjoy it!

 

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