We spoke with Vortex sponsored professional racegun shooter Jason Greene about his shooting, reloading and load development methods and gear.
We Talk with Jason
What shooting disciplines do you practice or compete in?
I compete in PRS type competitions. I started competitive shooting in 2010, with what was called Long Range Precision Tactical style shooting. For you young shooters, this was before PRS. A lot of this format was derived from military type scenarios like shooting from vehicles, on top of vehicles, trees, stumps, off my partner during team events, moving targets, hostage targets etc. The diversity is what drew me to the sport. Most of those early matches were called field matches because they were held in natural terrain. Often times this would add to the challenge of the match because there was no berm behind the target which might help spot a miss.
How did you get started in reloading your own ammunition?
Like most people it was a combination of saving money and chasing accuracy. It was a couple years before I started competing that I got a Savage 10fp in 308 and dreamed of reaching that elusive 1k yard mark. Haha
I first started loading the 308 using a Lee balance beam scale and hand trickler. That was a slow process. From there I purchased an RCBS Chargemaster and moving up in equipment as I progressed through this venture.
What is your main goal with reloading?
After I got more into the long range game and trying to compete, I learned that accuracy is increased by reloading.
What sequence do you follow when reloading virgin brass?
In the early years using brass like Remington and Hornady I would full length size the brass with a mandrel. Chamfer, de-bur outside neck, charge the case and load. I had uniformed the primer pockets, demurred for those but never really noticed any real difference in accuracy for what we do.
As I have evolved and using higher end brass I have streamlined my process. Part of it is to save time but also sometimes I feel we might stress too much on minor things while reloading when we need to be more focused on our skills with the weapon system.
I have been using Alpha Munitions Brass since 2018. Their brass is very consistent straight out the box. I will simply chamfer, de-bur the outside of the neck, final stop is the brush on the RCBS prep station and then load.
I have used Lapua in a couple calibers that Alpha didn’t offer at the time and felt like the neck tension was too much so that I would pass through an expander mandrel.
What sequence do you follow when reloading fired brass?
For fired brass I will use the Dillon XL 750 with a de-capping die to knock the primers out. Then into the stainless media wet tumbler with hot water. For cleaners I will then add an empty .40 cal case of Lemishine, then blue Dawn dish liquid. Amount not sure, I use an old plastic protein powder scoop that I fill about 1/2 full of Dawn.
I put the brass into an old baking pan and spray it down with Hornady 1 shot and FL size all the brass using a FL bushing die with no expander ball tossing into a plastic bin. I run around .002” neck tension on my brass.
Once all the brass is sized I take it it to the RCBS prep station. As I pull a piece of brass out to prep I wipe it down with a cloth towel to get any extra 1 shot off the outside of the case. Then I run it through these stages on the prep station. VLD chamfer tool, outside debur, then last the inside neck brush. I use the neck brush as a way to uniform any lube that may have gotten inside the case mouths from case to case. Others may prefer to tumble again to remove any lube. Finally I use the RCBS bench primer to prime the brass for loading.
Do you anneal your brass and why?
I do not anneal brass. I am not saying it’s right or wrong, I just don’t. But I tend to get around 500-700 pcs of brass to start the season and that is that year’s brass. When I have finished out the year depending on practice, competitions, etc that brass will have 4-7 firings on it. That will be that year’s brass and start the process again for the next year.
A couple things on that…. I have not seen any accuracy decreasing during that time. If I was shooting bench rest or something where every little measurable amount might matter then I may try annealing. Right now time is limited for me.
As for each year getting its own brass, my reason is because in my humble opinion I like to make sure all is good to go versus trying to stretch brass to the very end. When we are spending $1000 or more a weekend to compete on top levels I prefer to keep things slightly fresher. Now some may make the argument for keeping the brass and consistency of firing them 10-15 times.
What caliber do you shoot with and why?
I started competing with 260 Remington partly because that was a great round for the type of matches we did. As things evolved, I went to a 6mm Creedmoor when it came out and now run 6 Dasher mainly for matches. Still keeping a 6mm Creedmoor for certain matches.
Main reason for going to the 6mm Creedmoor was the reduced recoil and flatter trajectory over the 260. Now that things have evolved even more the 6 Dasher is just super consistent / accurate for some of the smaller targets we encounter sometimes and reduced recoil for unstable positions.
What does your reloading equipment consist of?
My press is a Forster Coax
RCBS Prep station for brass prep.
Redding dies, Bullet Central, SAC dies.
Scale is an Autotrickler setup with FX120i scale.
Grey Ops 200rd reloading block.
What load development method do you use to find a new load?
I am pretty old school, and will set my starting charge. Work up in .2-.3gr increments until start getting pressure. Usually about 10 shots for this. During this I will chrono and log the velocities looking for wide flat spots. Once I get a target window I will drop a couple grains below and load up .2-.3 grains thru the load and again l go a few grain above the node. Loading 3 rounds per test weight seated with .020-.030” jump on the bullet.
An example for my dasher load would look like this: 31-31.8 Varget with a 109 berger Hybrid.
3 shots 31, 31.3, 31.6, 31.8.
At this point I will already have an idea what the rifle is liking. I will then pick the middle of the node. Test .020 and .060” jump.
Most of the time I have had good luck around .050-060” jump with Berger bullets. Don’t be afraid to jump the bullet.
Now that I have the optimal range. I will take the 3 test loads and shoot at 740 yds which is the distance I can use on a buddy’s farm.
I have never been a fantastic group shooter so I will sometimes make a couple trips on different days just to confirm there wasn’t a fluke group.
I will usually load 10 rds of each test weight. For example again on my Dasher 31.3, 31.5, 31.7, shooting 5 shot groups from low charge to high. Go down range to take notes while the rifle cools. Then I will shoot the charges in reverse order from high to low 5 shot groups.
Another thing I tend to differ on is I don’t get too wrapped up in SD numbers. I watch how the rifle groups more than numbers. I have seen on couple occasions that I have a charge that has a lower SD like in the 2 range but the charge weight with an SD of 6 will be more consistent at distance so that’s what I roll with.
Do you do load development before, during or after barrel break in?
I prefer to finalize after the barrel is up to speed.
At what MOA or Grouping size do you stop load development?
I really like to see around .2-.3 moa. Most of the time the smaller targets can be around 1 moa or sometime .5 moa. So if you are talking about 500 yds such as a plate rack or a big small target array, that would be 5” and 2.5” on the small side. While wind and atmospherics are a big part of making that shot having a rifle that is capable of such accuracy and your ability to drive it will greatly improve your chances of hitting those targets.
Now that is the smaller side of the targets we will see. The majority will be around 1.5 – 2 moa, so a .5 -.6 moa rifle and a shooter who can drive it to its full potential can be very competitive and win matches.
What components does your rifle and optics that you currently use, consist of?
Rifle is by Joe Walls of Exodus rifle built 6 Dasher, 28” Bartlein barrel, Impact 737 action, Foundation Centurion stock, Vortex Gen 3 Razor, Bix N Andy Tact sport trigger.
Suppressed. Currently using Sico Omega and Harvester Big Bore. I have a KGM R6 and Area 419 Maverick in jail awaiting approval.
How often do you clean your rifle and barrel?
I usually clean between 300-500 rds depending on the competition cycle.
What barrel cleaning equipment, products and procedure do you use?
I have just started testing with CLR, run a few damp patches with CLR let that work on the carbon for 10-15 min. Then I use brake cleaner on patches to swab out the CLR. Using the Bullet Central Thorough Clean kit use a little of the flush on patches. Then the paste on a 6.5 Iosso blue brush for 15-20 passes. Then push some more patches with the flush through the barrel.
After a recommendation from a friend of mine I recently started using a bore scope I picked up off Amazon that was about $160 and works really well to see how the cleaning went and if there are remnants of things like carbon ring etc.
I use a generic bore guide that has a larger opening so it fits more like where the case should would be and not into the bore. The reason for this I want to ensure the bristle of the brush are contacting the area where the case mouth is so that I am scrubbing away where a carbon ring would form.
What do you feel is your biggest factor resulting in your consistency?
That is a hard question. Hard to say one single thing as I feel its kind of a combination of things that leads to good results in the end. Or maybe I could say passion. A passion for the sport is required because it does take a lot of work, time, and money but it’s worth it if you enjoy it and your family and friends are rooting for you.
Are there any other points you may want to add?
Thank you for allowing me to participate in this interview. By no means do I claim to be an expert at this. These are just what has proven to work for me. Other’s opinions may widely vary.
Eddie Patrick says
Jason is not only a Great shot, but a Great person to go with it.