Opinions on some of my 308 loads


February 15, 2011, 07:18 PM
I recently purchased a DPMS LR308. I haven't had a rifle in about 11 years, but when I did, I used to re-load. So I still have all of my re-loading equipment. I have worked up some loads, and would like to know if anyone is using similar loads in a semi-auto like mine. I have made all of the loads as long as the magazine would allow (so all loads are between 2.77 and 2.81" long OAL). If anyone has recommendations, I would love to hear them. I have not yet fired any of these loads, so I will have to let you know how they work for me when I get around to some range time. My loads are as follows....

1. Speers 168 grn gold match, federal brass, 43 grn RL15, winchester primers
2.sierra 150 grn match king, winchester brass, 45 grn RL15, winchester primers
3.168 grn Hornady match, winchester brass, 43 grn RL15, winchester primers
4. 168 grn Hornady match, winchester brass, 44 grn IMR4064, winchester primer
5.165 grn Nosler Ballistic tip, Lapua brass, 43 grn RL15, CCI200 primers

If anyone uses, has used, or doesn't recommend any of these for use in a semi-auto, please let me know. Thanks!

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February 16, 2011, 06:40 PM
Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

February 16, 2011, 07:06 PM
I hope that you didn't load up too many of them before you know that they will run in your rifle.

I do have a friend that has an AR in .308 and I've loaded for him. His really likes 42gr of RL15 under a 168gr SMK loaded to 2.8. As far as specs go, your loads sound reasonable to me. I just can't say how they are going to run in a gas gun.

February 16, 2011, 07:36 PM
I have a friend with a DPMS LR .308 w/ 24 inch barrel. According to him per the folks at DPMS, if you fire reloads through your DPMS during the 3 year warranty period, you VOID the warranty!

While, your reloads should all function well in your rifle, you should contact DPMS before firing these reloads and make sure it's okay.

By the way, my friend's LR .308 prefers the Federal Gold Medal Match in 168 gr Sierra Matchking.

February 16, 2011, 11:49 PM
Jasper, you are correct about the DPMS warranty. But 2 things.... The warranty card specifically says re-loads, not hand loads. I am using all new brass. I don't know if this makes a difference to them, but if you translate the warranty exactly as written, only firing re-loads will void the warranty. Secondly, I am not particularly concerned with voiding the warranty, because I know the quality of my loads. And when I do use re-loads (which is why I bought the Lapua brass) I use a full length re-sizing die..... which, by the way, I run all brand new brass through as well. As far as I am concerned, if I run these loads through the rifle and have a malfunction, I will be very confident that its a problem with the rifle and not the loads. I trust in this rifle, however, and have a feeling that I will be able to put thousands of rounds through it trouble free, re-loads or not. Although I will probably go through hundreds of brand spanking new hand loads long before I re-load anything. Thanks for the replies. And Tony, I loaded up less then 300 rounds total. The longest cartridge I have is 165 grn Nosler ballistic tips. They are at 2.817" long.... the longest I feel I can fit comfortably in the magazine. I ran a half a dozen through the rifle(not firing, just loading and ejecting by hand) and none of the bullets are contacting the lands or rifling. So I know I am at a safe maximum COAL. By the way, do any of you guys use new winchester brass? I noticed the primer pockets are REAL tight. Not easy getting the primers to seat completely. Thanks again for the replies.

February 17, 2011, 12:05 AM
Moose, if you have trouble with the OAL, try just going to the 2.8" spec. Under the jostling of the recoil it may cause the rounds to drag in the mag while firing causing a misfeed. Loading them so that they just fit into the mag isn't always the best thing to do. Besides, if you're shooting Sierra Match Kings, they don't mind (and often prefer) and good jump to the rifling.

February 17, 2011, 12:21 AM
The Noslers were the only loads at that length. Those bullets are LONG! But All of my 168 grn Hornady Match bullets are right at 2.8". Same with the speers gold match bullets. The 150 grn sierra match kings I decided to load to the same length as some of the factory ammo 150 grn loads are at (2.77"). Once again, I am just starting out with these loads, and will see were I am at the end of the day. I was just hoping someone had some experience with similar loads in an LR308.

February 17, 2011, 09:34 PM
By the way, do any of you guys use new winchester brass? I noticed the primer pockets are REAL tight. Not easy getting the primers to seat completely.

When I first started reloading, I used new Winchester brass and have had no issues seating primers...I use the CCI #34 mil type primers for 7.62. Don't know about other primers and how they fit. I have since bought some Lake City once fired brass and am shooting that now. I find that the primer pockets in the LC brass are a bit tighter after I ream them to get rid of the crimp than the Winchester brass, but I have had no issues with either casing.

February 17, 2011, 11:09 PM
Funny thing is, I used winchester primers in the winchester brass. I used CCI 200 primers in the Lapua brass and they went right in with minimal effort. But several of the winchesters I had to put them back in the press and seat them further in. Weird.

February 18, 2011, 05:52 PM
Does the DPMS LR308 have a free floating firing pin?

April 11, 2011, 01:12 AM
Got to try my loads today....finally! I ran a couple of boxes of factory ammo (winchester and federal) through it first, and for some reason the rifle jammed twice. While feeding the round it looked almost like the round popped out of the magazine prematurely and got wedged in kinda sideways. Easy to clear by ejecting the mag and pulling the bolt back. After the two boxes of factory, I moved on to my handloads. They shot great. We were shooting at random targets, no paper. But once I was zeroed, I couldn't miss. All my handloads ran through with no problems. No jams or failure to fires. I am happy. My next test will be to get to a range and put them on paper. I am guessing sub MOA with what I saw today.

April 11, 2011, 05:36 AM
Handloads are reloads, and I can't think of a manufacture that endorses them. They have no way of telling unless you blow it up, and you can't produce proof you purchased new ammo. I wouldn't sweat it, just don't push your loads. I know Sierra has seperate data for bolt guns and AR15s, not sure about .308 data being gun specific.

April 11, 2011, 12:16 PM
I've read that 168gr SMK and 42.7gr of IMR4895 closely matches FGMM 168gr smk ammuniction.

When I had my LR308 I loaded that and did sub-moa groups. Each load was hand measured and trickled though. Kind of a pain but worth the sub moa.

Zak Smith
April 12, 2011, 12:59 AM
Working up the loads in your rifle will reveal reality-- all else is speculation, hopefully based on prior experience.

Based on my experience with AR-10 style platforms, I'd put my money on the best accuracy from the 168gr SMK.

April 12, 2011, 01:29 AM
168smk with 44.5gr Varget with winchester brass and winchester primers has produced right around 3/4" through my FAL on at least one occasion.

I'll be back out at the range this weekend to see if I can duplicate those results again.

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