**Repeat and Eliminate **
Good groups are often a matter of pure chance. This is why repetition and elimination are the heart and soul of good handload development. Rather than crowd a couple dozen different load combinations into a shooting session, try no more than six or eight loads and fire two groups with each load. The correct procedure is not to fire the two identical loads consecutively, but to fire one group with each of the loads, allowing time for the barrel to cool between groups, and also to clean and fire fouling shots. Then, after the first series of test groups are completed, the firing order is reversed for the second series of test groups. This reduces the likelihood of false conclusions that might be reached when particularly good-or bad-groups are fired during a favorable or unfavorable part of the day. When the two groups of each load are averaged you have a clearer idea of the load's potential. The trick is not to pick out the best load, but to eliminate the worst ones. The loads that produce the smaller group averages then serve as a starting point for further refinement if you're determined to find the very best combination for your rifle.