Still having the New Rover Sabatti in caliber .308 Win. and optics Sightmark Citadel 3-18 × 50 we took advantage of two beautiful afternoons between the end of September and the second half of October to check the yield with different original cartridges: something recently combined with something seasoned was the formula for firing a few shots, verifying the approval of the weapon in based on the charges and the bullets used. We enjoyed a very favorable climate during the short visit to the Bonicelli shooting line, guests of the friendly and helpful Mr. Lorenzo Verra (328 9623 945), with 24 ° C and calm air. Temperature equal to 20 ° C, no wind and the same pleasant situation for the visit to Old Polygon of Castellinaldo at our disposal with the owner, our friend Nicola Vecchio, always attentive to safety and ready to give wise advice to those who want them (tel 333 384 8500). We are getting ready on the firing lines: the first is a little more Garibaldian, however excellent for a hunting calibration of rifle and optics, while in the second we have solid support bases formed at the front by sandbags and at the rear by the rabbit ear cushion so that to remain firm when tapping and firing. Ultimately what is needed for the survey that we set out to perform. The weapon is now well known to us and we quickly find the optimal posture by straining the neck a little to avoid vignetting in the eyepiece due to too much distance in the telescope assembly: but it is a problem that often happens to us for which we almost always find the square with some stretching exercises. Almost, because every now and then we make some inaccuracies and the groups highlight it. For economy and convenience we placed a single round target at 100 meters in the first session and another one, equipped with more insignia in the second, so as not to have to run up and down the gears: however, considering that the scope is zeroed with a given ammunition , there should be no noticeable deviations when changing ammunition. In short we are ready and we begin the survey with the first box of cartridges that comes to us from the transport backpack.
The start of the tests
After other shots that do not fall within the predetermined series, we move on to check the cartridges Federal, those in the blue box that underlie the first price of the House: traditional Soft Point ball of 180 gr. For convenience, let's keep the tappet at 9 o'clock on the red outer edge of the target: the charge shows a shot pattern slightly higher than the aimed point, and the three shots are in 30 mm. Hardly noticeable recoil even with heavy bullets for the .308 Win cartridge. and the reported V / 0 is equal to 784 m / sec with E / of 364 kgm; calibrating at 100 yds the drop at 300 is 44 cm, but the E / is still abundant and equal to 205 kgm.
Always at Bonicelli we move on to Federal Power Shock® with manufacturer-specific ball here in the weight of 150 gr. The grouping is centered, obtained by aiming at 6 o'clock in the red round, certainly not exciting in terms of concentration: we will see later how the Sabatti barrel with the traditional rifling and pitch of 1:12 "prefers heavier weights.
Let's now pass to the tests carried out at the Vecchio Polygon of Castellinaldo (CN)
An older box of cartridges has been returned to hand Sellier & Bellot with HPBT Match bullet from 168 gr (10,9 g) that we remember not exactly adequate in another shotgun: here, as the Roman friend says "they were crazy" and the three holes could fit in only one if just the shooter had been more careful. But already in this way the result is really exciting. Consistent with the bullet weight and with a Match charge the V / 0 equal to 801 m / sec which corresponds to an E / of about 350 kgm; with an MRT calculated at 166 m, the drop at 200 m is 5,3 cm and at 300 m it is 35,5 cm.
We now come to our home cartridges with the Flakes Exacta: the Casa di Lecco wisely adopts 168 gr Sierra HPBT Match King balls and we do not spend words to magnify an excellent combination with which we had fun shooting five shots: three are consistent with each other and two, here are the oversights of the shooter's posture, slightly apart and still joined together: the distance between the two groups is equal to 25 mm, but the three initial shots are in only 1 cm. The excellent loading is evident, very welcome by Sabatti. The box does not show the ballistic data: evidently the groupings on the target are enough as credentials of this excellent product.
Do not pay for what we have already experienced we have again fielded the Federal Power Shock® with the specific 150 gr bullet and again there is a poor link between barrel and bullet: the excellent cartridge is to be used with longer rifling steps to tighten the shot patterns. The data provided see 860 m / sec of V / 0 and an E / 0 equal to 365 kgm. Federal has a remarkable variety of fillers in the same caliber and the .308 Win. is among the most popular: we experiment with the cartridges of the orange box, those a little more expensive and with the Premium designation. In addition to top choices for brass and shell construction, primer and powder, the 168 gr Sierra Match King BTHP "Gold Medal® Match" bullet is mounted which reaches 808 m / sec of V / 0 with 362 kgm of E / 0 . The three holes consistent with each other satisfy precisely.
A doubt about the hunting Fiocchi with a 150 gr EPN ball which in not too distant times had given excellent proof of themselves while in today's test they show not so much that they do not tie with the rifling step but with charges perhaps inconsistent with a three-shot string placed in good axiality, but spaced apart in elevation.
We are bringing to light an artifact from some time ago with a box of Igman which, from the still visible price, 13.200 Lire, brings us back to a happy monetary age. We remember how fresh out of purchase they did not prove to be miracles of precision, but in the test we hoped that the anonymous 11,7 g (180 gr) FMJ bullet would marry well the rifling pitch of our rifle, improving the results we still had. in mind. This was not the case and the generously sized dispersion practically in equilateral triangle shows a charge that is not too adequate to tighten the grouping.
We end the test with some very recent Sellier & Bellots, clearly designed for shooting ranges which on other occasions have provided excellent tests, in particular we recall a very closed clover made by Lorenzo Verra della Bonicelli in the first stage of the Sabatti World on Tour. The first shot escaped us, a little high, then we went back to the honor of the world with three holes linked in a couple of cm. Charges well done by the Czech company and perfectly suited to Sabatti. The FMJ bullet of 11,7 g (180 gr) is pushed to a V / 0 of 735 m / sec with about 315 kgm of E / 0: a rather calm and well executed charge that favors the concentration of the shots, just ideal for the seats in the polygon.
At the end of the test
An impromptu test without too many pretensions to science, in search of the cartridge that, combined with the Sabatti Nuova Rover, would give satisfying results on the shooting range. At the end of the games we discard the charges with bullets of reduced weight for the caliber, those 150 gr that in other rifling steps grant the right satisfaction, but here they are not appreciated. We also discard some charges that were already of medium caliber at the origin and on which the time passed has certainly not favored the yield. Then we find a nice grouping of brands where 180 gr or above all 168 gr balls are adopted: you go on the safe side by choosing the Sierra Match King which prove to be a guarantee of success. A few words about Sabatti New Rover which lends itself to our tests: everything works properly and we are particularly pleased with the direct shot of excellent yield, especially if we consider that the model of the rifle in our hands is really for hunting and not shooting. The optics Sight Mark Citadel 3-18 × 50 with complex reticle the right and milrad notches has a central dot of infinitesimal dimension which, however, by carefully adjusting the parallax, is readily identified by our eye and placed in the circle or in the reference point that we have identified on the target. We have extensively talked about the shots or clik, if you prefer, on other occasions: we have well appreciated them starting from the test of the square passed with honors. An instrument of favorable technical and monetary balance: which is no small feat especially nowadays.