.308 Recipe w/ 185gr Berger VLDs


December 1, 2010, 01:42 AM
Anybody got any good ones? I just got my bullets in the mail and a fair amount of searching hasn't turned up anything.

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December 1, 2010, 06:12 AM
Here is a good starting place.

December 1, 2010, 07:29 AM
Contact Berger by email. I did a few months ago and Walt Berger himself replied with the information. It seems that this gentleman now is semi-retired and his (I believe) grandson-in-law manages the business on a day to day basis. Mr. Berger still is acting as technical support. Actually I had 2 very informative email replies from him. A true gentleman.

December 1, 2010, 07:30 AM
Heavy bullets in the .308 require special powders if you want any velocity out of them without high pressure. The best I've found is VihtaVouri N550. 47.0gr behind a 190SMK in Hornady Match brass nets me 2700fps.


December 1, 2010, 08:31 AM
Thanks for all the tips guys

December 1, 2010, 10:16 PM
Might also try Reloder 17. My 308 recipe for that & SMK 190s clocks around 2750 fps. Haven't tried the Bergers, though, I ended up going heavier.

December 1, 2010, 10:24 PM
Are you constrained to magazine-length?

If so, measure the longest round that will fit in the mag, and reduce the COL by 0.010"

All other specs start from there.

December 1, 2010, 11:54 PM
I don't think so but that is an excellent point. I hadn't even considered that. It looks like i'm gonna have to spend some more money and get some special powder, looks like Vihtavuori N550 or so. No one around here sells it either so I'm gonna have to spend $1,000,000 on hazmat shipping

December 2, 2010, 12:45 AM
You have to decide on what will be your COL.
Without that number, there is no point from which to begin.

After that, you must determine the capacity of your case.
This will be a fired case, trimmed to the desired length, but before resizing -- unless the rounds are fired in a semi-auto, in which case the fired casing will give you a false reading of case volume.

December 3, 2010, 01:05 AM
A co-worker of mine was messing around in QuickLoad and he put everything for a .308 win, 26" barrel, 185 Berger VLD and a powder charge of 42.5 grains BUT with Hodgden H4350 instead of Vihtavouri (the preferred powder for this combo) and the 4350 was about 2000psi less.

That means it would be safe to experiment with, right? That put's it around 2500fps. My current load, a 168gr SMK with IMR 4064, also 42.5grains, produces about 51000psi @ 2650fps. Less pressure is less dangerous, right?

December 3, 2010, 10:39 AM

During load development for heavy bullet .308 loads, I tried H4350. No problem using it (but use much more than 42.5gr), but velocities are low (~2500fps) because you simply cannot get enough H4350 in the case (too slow of a powder).


December 3, 2010, 05:17 PM
I had considered that. It's ok, there's a gun show here soon so I'll see if I can get some Vihtavuori for cheap

December 3, 2010, 11:38 PM
Powder burn-rate comparisons.

December 4, 2010, 09:58 AM
RL17 works very well for heavy bullets in .308.

I use IMR4064 for up to 178gr AMax but switched over to RL17 for the bigger bullets.

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