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 Post subject: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 2:20 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:35 am
Posts: 5
So I took my new Nosler Western Rifle (chambered in 26 Nosler)to the range yesterday to perform the barrel break-in procedure. I went through two boxes of Nosler Custom Competition 140gr and was not able to get it to shoot sub 2” groups which is very frustrating.

I had a Leupold VAR-X III professionally amounted on a new Leupold Back County pic rail mount and new Leupold Back Country Cross Slot Rings before taking it to the range. Throughout the barrel break-in process, the groups did not improve but the ease of cleaning did so it’s confusing to me.

I called Nosler and they aren’t sure what is causing it so I offered to take the scope off and mount it on another rifle of mine that routinely prints MOA or better. This should at least eliminate my scope being the issue. Assuming the scope isn’t the issue, what else should I do before sending it back to Nosler? Picture of target below.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 4:52 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 4:10 pm
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Location: British Columbia
Welcome to the forum. I would check the scope first as well, if it isn't the culprit then it may need a trip back to Nosler. You may wish to try another type of factory load too before it potentially heads back but with a different scope.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 5:11 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 2:49 pm
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Location: Northern British Columbia
Welcome to the forum, Mczar. Gerry has given you great advice. Few things are more frustrating than a rifle that doesn't produce the accuracy we are expecting. For sure, eliminating the scope as the culprit is the first step in resolving the issue. If that fails to give a definitive answer, then it would be worth speaking with the people at Nosler. They are a good company that will act honourably.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 6:40 pm 

Joined: Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:27 pm
Posts: 1266
It may just be that your rifle does not like that bullet and/or ammunition's bullet/powder combination.
I would try another bullet, bullet/powder combo or even some factory ammunition first, before "jumping the gun" on calling it a rifle or scope issue.

While many companies offer quality rifles that are capable of great accuracy today, there is still no guarantee that they will shoot sub-MOA with the bullet that you are hoping to use.

While the bullet you are using is a match bullet and should shoot well, the 26 Nosler is a hunting cartridge, so you may want to try some hunting bullets to see if performance and accuracy improves. I would try the AccuBond first.
In my experience, it is the easiest bullet to work up loads with, and has proven to be the most consistently accurate bullet I have used in a large variety of cartridges. The LRAB can also be very accurate, but is a little more finnicky in finding good loads compared to the AB. And you could also try the Ballistic Tip or the Partition.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 7:22 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:35 am
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DrMike wrote:
Welcome to the forum, Mczar. Gerry has given you great advice. Few things are more frustrating than a rifle that doesn't produce the accuracy we are expecting. For sure, eliminating the scope as the culprit is the first step in resolving the issue. If that fails to give a definitive answer, then it would be worth speaking with the people at Nosler. They are a good company that will act honourably.


I’m going to head to the range tomorrow with the same scope and one of my .308s and hopefully this will be the issue. I did speak with their customer service and they were very helpful and showed a lot of willingness to help and they’re going to expedite some ammo that I ordered a while ago (Accubond) so that I can try out a different load.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2019 11:06 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 2:49 pm
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Location: Northern British Columbia
The AccuBond is a fine bullet and has superb terminal performance. If it shoots well for you, you will be golden.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:05 am 
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Change the scope out

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:47 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:35 am
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FOTIS wrote:
Change the scope out

Changed the scope over to my Ruger M77 Compact and shot a box of cheap 150gr Federal Soft Points. Only had one box for it and was a little pressed for time so the target below was the best 3 shot group after getting it close to being dead on.

Going to head back to the range on Sunday to get closer to dead on and then go for groups. In the meantime, I’m inclined to think that the scope is not the issue.
***EDIT*** added pictures of both rifles so that I could get opinions on scope mount differences.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 7:02 pm 
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Location: British Columbia
It does look like the scope is doing well and your mounts look good too. Any updates with the new Accubond factory loads?

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 8:59 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:35 am
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gerry wrote:
It does look like the scope is doing well and your mounts look good too. Any updates with the new Accubond factory loads?


Was finally able to find a box of 142gr Accubond LR and took it to the range today. Put about 1/2 a box through it and the groups did not improve at all. I brought along my .308 just to make sure the issue wasn’t me and the targets below are the best I could do in each gun. The first picture is my best group with my .308 and the other picture is the best I could do with my Nosler.

I sent my contact at Nosler an email this afternoon outlining what I had done and sent pictures of the targets. I’ve let them now that I want to return the rifle so they can figure out what’s up with it and I’m waiting to hear back from them. I’m hopeful that they can fix it as I really enjoy shooting the gun.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:13 pm 
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Location: British Columbia
Doesn't look good at all, I'm sure they will take care of things for you. That group with the 308 looks good though.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:37 am 

Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:35 am
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gerry wrote:
Doesn't look good at all, I'm sure they will take care of things for you. That group with the 308 looks good though.

No it doesn’t and they’ve been fantastic to work with so far. I spoke to them this morning and they’re sending me a shipping label and a form to fill out so it’ll hopefully be going back tomorrow.

The Ruger is a good little gun and it’s always been a good shooter. I’m glad it shoots well since it helped me at least know that the grouping issue wasn’t something that I was doing wrong.


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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 6:35 pm 

Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 4:04 pm
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Location: central washington
Mine doesn’t group factory rounds very well either, browning x bolt. Handloads are a different story.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 7:19 pm 
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Is it just a temperamental round or something else? It certainly looks like the op's rifle has something wrong with it but at least Nosler is trying to take care of it quickly by the sounds of it.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Sun May 12, 2019 7:06 pm 

Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 12:20 pm
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Location: Northern Virginia
gerry wrote:
Is it just a temperamental round or something else? It certainly looks like the op's rifle has something wrong with it but at least Nosler is trying to take care of it quickly by the sounds of it.


My small belief is any of this big jugged cases can be temperamental. Even the big 300 RUM can be sensitive as well but the 26 Nosler is even more of that.

I know they can be wicked when fed the right stuff though.


Good luck with your rifle, I’m sure Nosler will sort you out.

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 Post subject: Re: New Nosler 26 not grouping well
PostPosted: Sun May 12, 2019 8:53 pm 

Joined: Sun Apr 04, 2010 9:59 pm
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77-- my wife bought me a Kimber lightweight for Christmas, which is guaranteed to shoot 1" groups. I mounted a quality scope and mounts on the rifle and at last count have fired approximately 100 rounds through the rifle. I do not shoot factory ammo, so I am able to play with a wide variety of components. I have had twenty groups with two within a 1/2 inch and the other at an inch out. Now mind you I also have several around the 3/4 inch range but I knew there was more to gain there. I disassembled the rifle and put a piece of electricians tape just in front of the recoil lug and two pieces on the back side of the lug. The first group went in under a 1/2 inch and the second with a separate bullet, right at an inch with a perfect triangle. I would take a close look at the clearances and how the rifle is bedded. Another option is to try some upward pressure on the front end of the barrel back a couple of inches or so. The tape could work but also slices of a plastic jug or similar. Just enough to apply some upward pressure. Just my .02 for what it's worth.

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