The title says it all. With all the variables involved, how does anyone ever develop the perfect load for their rifle before the barrel is toast? Let's just assume (as a novice) that I want to load for my .223 bolt, and I have done my research. I'm looking at H335 or CFE223 powder. Either Norma or Lapua brass. Confirmed CCI BR4 primers. At least 4 different bullets to see what the rifle likes. Before I even consider seating depth, powder charge, or compatibility between dies and rifle chamber, let's do the math. I already have 16 different combinations of components, and I feel that I was fairly conservative in number of options. Assuming that my reloading skill is up to the task, I want at least 5 of each specific load, so I can compare velocity and accuracy. That brings us to a total of 80 rounds at the range. Finally, adding into the equation both seating depth and powder charge at 5 points each so I can plot a curve, I end up with 2000 rounds at the range. God help me if I happen to choose dies that don't accurately model my chamber. It seems that the most likely scenario is that I might still have 50% of barrel life left before I have to buy a new barrel and start the whole process over again. Am I just chasing my tail with reloading?