Ladder Tests work, plain and simple. They save time, and components, and barrel life especially on the barrel burners.
I have found a terrific load in a mere 9 shot ladder test, followed by a 5 shot group, and was done. That's only 14 rounds fired. Then obtained DOPE on that load from 200 to 800 yards, then let the barrel cool and run the range again.
But unlike what they are speaking about hunting velocity, I am paying attention to where bullets land in relation to each other. When they're not loaded the same, and are grouping sub MOA, that's the node. At the tail end, I find they do in fact have a low ES, when I finally do chronograph them. So I'm not saying he's wrong, we are just approaching it from a different direction. I will not have a Magneto Speed attached to my barrel during testing. I don't care how light they are, they weigh someting, so they're changing barrel harmonics, for all but the heaviest contour barrels, like an MTU contour.
The cartridges I've performed ladder test on:
.223 (bolt action)
.308 Win (bolt action)
.308 Win (AR)
7 Rem Mag
.300 Win Mag
Every single cartridge worked well with a ladder test.
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