.223 reloading problem


June 3, 2006, 12:40 PM
I have been loading for about 4 years now, mainly .303, .308, and 30.06. I descided to try my hand at .223.

My load is 25gr AA2230, 55gr Hornady SPT SX, once fired Remington and Lake City brass, .223 primers from CCI, no crimp on the bullet (the way I load all the other ammo).

Loaded 20 rounds to OAL length 2.175".

I was test firing my latest build, a 20" AR with a chrome moly Wilson barrel. Shot 40 rounds of 55gr reloads from Dallas Reloaders at 25 yards, all is well. Loaded the 20 rounds of my reloads, slow fired, indoor range. I did not check the target between 3 to 5 round groups. Fired all 20, pulled the target in, figuring I would have a tight group somewhere. 3 rounds, 1 1/2 low and left, overlapping, 1 @ 8" high left, one hit the clip holding the target, the other 15 not on the paper. :banghead: :cuss: :scrutiny::confused: :eek: :what: :fire: :scrutiny:

I then loaded another mag full of the Dallas Reloaders 55gr, 5 shot group, overlapping dead on POA.:banghead:

Help???:( I would like to reload .223, but I am going the wrong way quickly. Thoughts, comments, flames, are all acceptable.

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June 3, 2006, 12:48 PM
You need to work up your loads not just guess. I would think that you might be needing to start over from scratch with your load development. First thing I woul do is segregate the brass. Use the LC or the RP but not together. I would chrono the reloads, not guestimate. I would then work your load up using the chosen powder to duplicate the velocity and the intended accuracy parameters.....

Car Knocker
June 3, 2006, 12:58 PM
Just went out to the Accurate Powder site to check your load. The only 55 gr bullet listed is a Nosler SPBT. The listed maximum for that bullet using 2230 is 25 grains, your starting load. I suggest that you follow P0832177's advice and start over from scratch.


June 3, 2006, 04:48 PM
Hummm, I have never had a loading that was that bad,,,and I've had some bad ones! What twist is your barrel? I think your bullet may be the culprit, the Hornady SX (super explosive) has a very thin jacket designed for maximum fragmentation on impact and in rifles with a normal twist of 1 in 12, I'd say you are spinning the jacket right off the bullets.

June 3, 2006, 07:46 PM
(1) I am using the Speer #13 Reloading Manual. Page 140 shows AA2230 with 55 ge FMJ, Spitzer and SP to use min 24.0 and max 26.0. Velocitiy between 3017 and 3223.

(2) 20" barrel 1 in 9 twist. 10 rounds loaded in Remington cases, 10 rounds loaded in Lake City. Rounds were seperated and loaded in groups of 10 each, 20 rounds total.

(3) Hornady site list the SPSX bullet but gives no speed limit or loading warnings.

(4) If 25gr is max load in the Accurate tech data, where do you go for RELIABLE information and load data?

Car Knocker
June 3, 2006, 08:20 PM
Reloading manuals' data is based on the exact components used and in their test barrel and/or firearms. That is why they list a start load to work up from. While you may be using the data from the Speer manual, I'd bet that the components that they developed their loads from weren't once-fired Remington and Lake City brass and CCI primers - whichever one you're using. In any event, you didn't use the recommended start loads and work up from there.

The Speer loads and the Accurate Powder loads are reliable based on the parameters used when they were developed.

June 3, 2006, 08:48 PM
As you probably suspect, there's something WAY wrong. I'd probably get a box of known good bullets and back off on the powder. I've got pix of 2 consecutive three shot sub 1" groups at almost 300 yards with 50 grain Nosler BT's and Varget loaded to max mag length. I can't imagine that the brass could have that much effect. Are your primers normal SR or mag??

There have been some good threads here about favorite loads for .223. Might check those.

June 3, 2006, 09:59 PM
Lack of crimp in rounds to be used in an AR could be a big problem. I've seen setback with factory ammo (UMC) because of inadaquate crimp, no crimp IMHO would be asking for trouble or at best erratic performance.


June 3, 2006, 10:19 PM
Thanks for the info guys.

June 4, 2006, 12:07 AM
Typically my best handload group is 1/2 the size of my worst handload.

The same load from two magazines giving a much larger change ratio indicates to me a loose scope.

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