I am not a benchrest shooter and honestly I don't want to be, I have nearly zero desire at this stage in my life to put all the bullets in one hole....I mean I pay for the bullets and they are made for punching paper so why not make sure you punch the most paper with them :) . All kidding aside there is a time for high precision, tight tolerances and exacting performance. But for what I do I need a balance between accuracy/tight tolerances and reliability. One thing I have realized though is with my match reloads I have a lot of variation in run out with my seated bullets which can contribute to the vertical stringing I see in my targets. I happened into a Redding competition micrometer seater die for a really good price after wanting to try one out for some time I snatched it up and put it to use right away.
The draw to this particular die is the fact you can control your seat depth by .001" and the literature included is a must read to set this die up correctly. It was as simple as setting the die up with a previously loaded round with my seat depth of 2.675" make two full turns of the adjustment knob which is .050" per revolution and have a new seat depth of 2.775". In reading and looking over technical data my .308 handloads may have been seated a little far in so I'll be using the new die to load up accurately seated bullets from 2.675"- 2.775" and see if this hurts or helps my groups at all. Don't get me wrong, my 2.675" loads with 150gr SMK's shoot very well, but I'm wondering if they couldn't be a little better with a lot less jump .100" less to be exact. The gun I'm shooting these in might not care but only range time will tell.
Shooting these reloads out of a semi auto rifle that will eat just about anything you feed it I can only gain so much performance. No I'm not shooting benchrest but nobody has ever complained about a gun/ammo combination being too accurate.
If you are on the fence about trying a micrometer seater I have to say off the bat they are a lot less of a hassle to get dialed in and are repeatable. If you load several different types of bullets its as easy as keeping notes of micrometer settings and dialing those in as needed. Game changer....