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Whats your favorite .308 load?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by Fat Jesus, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. Fat Jesus

    Fat Jesus Oregon Member

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    It looks like im going to need to work up a new load for my .308 bolt gun. The load for my My AR10 is OK in the bolt action gun, but I found a factory load that I was able to group @ .5" at 100yds. So what is your favorite .308 load?
    AR10 load is 150gr Nosler green Ballistic tips with 46gr of Varget, shoots 1" groups at 100.
    Hornady TAP FPD 168gr is what I shot .5 with the other day.

    what powders and bullets do you prefer? I just bought a box of Hornady Match 168gr to try out
     
  2. speedtriple

    speedtriple Vancouver, Washington, United States Member

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    I find 44.1 gns of Reloader 15 works well behind the Hornady AMax 168 HPBT. This load is very conservative when the weather is cooler like now. It does get to be a hotter load in summer. I load them about .040 longer than stated max to get closer to the rifling on my Remington 700 with a 26" barrel. Using Federal Match primers. Most likely you won't have to full length size for your bolt gun every time.
     
  3. SAR1846

    SAR1846 Oregon Member

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    I like Re15... with Nosler Custom Comps. Works well.
     
  4. KTM530XCW

    KTM530XCW Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    42.0g Varget behind SMK 168's. Not a great hunting round, but shoots in the .2's consistently out of a Savage 10FCP
     
  5. sneakboxer

    sneakboxer NW OR Active Member

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    DISCLAIMER: these loads are safe in my rifle only, please work up your own for safety referencing a manual.
    Reloader-15 44.5gr, CCI primer, win neck sized bass, 165 Nosler BT or accubonds COL 2.805 with a light Lee factory crimp. Shoot less than .5MOA out of my old Ruger. Win748 and Hornady 110gr V-max are fun. As are 150gr (30-30 bullets) and trailboss. oh yea 180gr RN interlocks over 41.5gr of RL-15 shoot good too.

    I have the reloading bug pretty bad but this old 308 is pretty easy to feed. .308 Winchester Cartridge Guide will give more info and options than you can shake a stick at.
     
  6. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    It might help to know what kind of "bolt gun" you are loading for. Every rifle has it's own quirks and preferences. There are some basics however. What length barrel? What barrel profile, sporter, varmint, heavy varmint, target? Is the action pillar bedded with a floating barrel?

    All these parameters will affect the performance of ammo.

    All that BS aside, I have a Remington 700 5-R Milspec with 24" barrel that's somewhere between a heavy varmint and target profile. The action is pillar bedded with Devcon extending 2" ahead of the recoil lug. It loves a load of 43.5 Gr Varget under a 175gr Nosler Custom Competition HPBT bullet. It will give me 3/4" groups at 300 yards. For a hunting type bullet the Hornady 168 gr A-Max with 44 grains of Varget also do almost as good.

    Will these loads perform well in your .308? Maybe. At least they would be a good starting point to work up or down from. One thing I've found with my rifle is that it has a very specific speed for each bullet that it does well with. Pushing it faster doesn't do anything but use more powder and yield larger groups.

    If you want to work up the ultimate load for your rifle here's some reading on a time tested method. http://www.desertsharpshooters.com/manuals/incredload.pdf

    It allows one to quickly find the "accuracy nodes" for their rifle's barrel and do so with a minimum of rounds fired. A tip, if you try this, do it on a wind free day and at a minimum of 200 yards. 300 is even better so you can see the actual differences in powder loads.

    Good luck on your quest.
     
  7. Fat Jesus

    Fat Jesus Oregon Member

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    Its a Weatherby Vangaurd S2 .308 24" tapered barrel, 1:12 twist, Bedded barrel.
     
  8. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Is the barrel fully bedded to the front of the stock?
     
  9. Fat Jesus

    Fat Jesus Oregon Member

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    I'll have to look again, but i believe so. It appeared to sit on it the entire length
     
  10. BANE

    BANE Battle Ground WA. Well-Known Member

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    Why would you fully bed the barrel?
    I would think that would work against you.
    I always free float my barrels seems to be more accurate.
     
  11. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Some barrel profiles have worked better with full length bedding, some with just a band of bedding at the tip of the stock, and some need to be fully floated. The big problem as I see it is as the barrel heats up it will "climb" out of the channel and string groups vertical.

    Many hunting rifles were built with the idea that they'd shoot a total of 4-5 rounds in an outing. One or two to make sure the sights were still on, one for that trophy buck that you missed, and the last for the two point you ended up taking home;) Remember, ammo was expensive when some of these rifles were built.

    I too float my barrels but will adjust the amount of bedding ahead of the recoil lug to what the specific barrel "likes".

    In the end, every rifle barrel will have it's own set of harmonics so one has to properly search them out. My fantastic load for a .308 may look like a shotgun pattern in someone else's rifle that looks just like mine.
     
  12. Fat Jesus

    Fat Jesus Oregon Member

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    I'll have to look at it again, but im almost positive it resting on the stock the entire length on the top edges of it. But I'll check tonight after school.