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Lead Sled for load development

Ashy Larry

Ten Pointer
Is this a common practice? I’ve been working up loads off bags at 100 and always have that “feeling” that a flier was my fault. In no way am I a world class shooter, but with handloads I would like to know which one is really truly the tightest. Very frustrating because you never know if it’s the load of a slight flinch or forced trigger pull. Lead sled seems like a logical solution to remove the Indian from the arrow.
 

kilerhamilton

Twelve Pointer
Sand bags, I like a front and rear bag. I can hold the gun just as still.
I’m sure you know this but.. I will type for new readers or who maybe interested.
Do not press the gun into your shoulder hard. Light hand on the pistol of the stock and squeeze trigger straight back. There shouldn’t be a second hand on the gun. If so just enough to level it or stabilize cheek weld.
Parallax or eye ball relation to the cross hairs.
Gun level every shot.
No pressure on the barrel or scope to the stock.
Action torqued correctly.

A flyer is usually caused by a velocity change. When reloading for rifle precision the brass and primers need to match.
Same powder holding capacity per case volume.
Necks measured and trimmed to same length. Seating bullet depth in relation to reflection time.
IMO if you don’t have all the tools and time for this you may want to stick with factory loads. I wanted to load once apon a time until I figured how involved it was to make precision. Now if you want a 2 MOA gun with your bullet of choice that your confident in, then load up.
Just saying it’s tough to load develop without a lot of work. I only shoot 100rds a year maybe. So it’s not for me.
Let us know what your working on as I am interested.
Cheers
 
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shotgunner

Ten Pointer
I love mine. I know there have been times with bags that I knew it was me. I have actually packed it up and went home. Having a very limited schedule to shoot I like the fact I have removed one more variable. Oh yeah, and when developing buckshot loads or patterning heavy waterfowl and turkey loads it is a blessing. I caught mine on sale for around $70. Also great if you have new shooters to help them build confidence.
 

Ashy Larry

Ten Pointer
It is a very lightweight setup (for me). Its a tikka 7-08 with a few lightweight mods and good lightweight glass. Its my primary deer hunter since i hunt mountains mostly. Shooting lightweight guns is no joke. they also have a lot of recoil and muzzle jump compared to longer heavier barrelled guns. I think the lead sled would help me. I dont doubt my reloading process, its pretty in tune.
 

Eric Revo

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Those lead sleds are scope killers if you load them up until they're rock solid. It's better to use 20# or so to help with the recoil than having your scope take the whole shock. I've seen it kill many lesser scopes and even Leupold wasn't immune. That goes for any rifle vise that doesn't have any back and forth movement, not just lead sled.
I have a high precision sighting vise that has a hydraulic trigger activator, it's a pretty cool feature but takes too long to set it up so I haven't used it in years. It takes all the guesswork out of it, set the activator up in line with the trigger, push the cylinder(really just a big syringe) and bang, no human error since no-one was touching the vise or rifle in any way.
 

Papa_Smurf

Ten Pointer
Contributor
i would agree with the opinion of just loading about 15-20 lbs to the sled to help with recoil and stability during the shot.

I have a plastic caldwell sled that helps stability, but it doesn't help with recoil at all, so load development type work with light rifles can be a bit of a punch in the shoulder.
 

bigten

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
I reload for several calibers and use lead sleds for workup. Actually have two as I needed to add one for rifles with extended magazines. One is foolish to think factory ammunition is the same quality as tuned ammo, even without the persnickety stuff of matching cases by weight, volume etc.
With that said, stay on the light side with weight on the sled, you do not actually want it rock solid, just stable. Do not affix the firearm to the sled or your pretty much wasting a lot of rounds. Use the sled as a cradle for stability only. I do lay a finger or two over the barrel as far rear as possible to lessen barrel rise, but I also do that when hunting, so not a biggie with me. Always recheck zero from bags or your most used hunting type rest...
 
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Eric Revo

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
hey Eric Revo how mobile is that precision shooting vise? Do you own a lead sled?
I don't own a lead sled. The precision vise is lighter and more compact with lots of adjustment features. It's a bit more complicated and really needs to be on a flat surface for best us
CTK Precision is the company. USA made
 
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41magnum

Twelve Pointer
Is this a common practice?
No, we know a flyer, because we know where the crosshairs were upon recoil.
PLUS, most folks don't want the artificial-ness, since the gun will shoot different from the shoulder than a sled, just like when 3 guys shoot the same rifle. The zero becomes different places since we all hold/squeeze/cant a gun a bit different.
 

herman

Six Pointer
About 10 years ago I was shooting and setting up a lot of the savage muzzleloaders.One of my shooting buddies had a lead sled that he wasn't using and let me use it.I am still using it today.
I use it now for all calibers because I don't want to carry another rest set up to the range too.
It works great.
I have it rigged so it moves with recoil and comes back to battery after.I use a 25 lb lead shot bag on it and a bungie cord.
I meant to take some pics of the set up yesterday but didn't get around to it,will try to get them next week.
I will post soon as I get the pics.
 

billyf

Button Buck
I have a lead sled and really enjoy it. I would recommend it. Its helps stabilize the rifle and It's very good at reducing the felt recoil.
 

Buxndiverdux

Old Mossy Horns
Herman, Do you shoot out that window? We had set up like that a long time ago. We only had 100 yards with lights but we shot a lot a night working up loads. Air conditioning, no mirage and reloading bench right beside us. Your set up reminds me of that.
 

herman

Six Pointer
Yes that is my cold weather set up.My 2 shooting buddies and I shoot all year.
Even have a heater when it gets winter time.
One buddy and myself have been shooting together over 20 yrs .We used to shoot one to 3 days a week but have slowed down to one day a week now.The other buddy has been shooting together the last 12 years.
 

PPosey

Twelve Pointer
After several shoulder injuries including 2 dislocations, I use a lead sled with 1 bag of shot and one bag of sand. Works well and I can shoot without pain.
 
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