What rifle and carbine cartridges share components


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IdahoSkies
November 5, 2012, 12:42 AM
In thinking about how to scale down or, well rather, coordinate my reloading components, I was wondering what rifle/full size cartridges (.30-06, .270, .303 etc) and what carbine cartridges (5.56, 6.8, 7.62x39 etc) share the most components, ie. bullets, primers, powders, etc.

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Lost Sheep
November 5, 2012, 02:45 AM
In thinking about how to scale down or, well rather, coordinate my reloading components, I was wondering what rifle/full size cartridges (.30-06, .270, .303 etc) and what carbine cartridges (5.56, 6.8, 7.62x39 etc) share the most components, ie. bullets, primers, powders, etc.
The ballistic difference between carbines and rifles (by definition) is only barrel length, so (in general) slightly faster powders will be ever-so-slightly better than slower. Other than that, I believe everything else will be completely interchangeable.

For example, a 5.56 NATO chambered rifle and a 5.56 NATO chambered carbine are not all that much different. Same bullets, powders, primers and brass will be OK. There is probably more difference between an 8" barreled .357 magnum and a 4" .357 magnum than a 20" .308 Winchester (7.62 NATO) and a 26" .308 Winchester. Just each individual firearm may need to be tuned to individual loads for optimal performance as an individual. In other words, there is probably more difference between individual pairs of rifles or individual pairs of carbines than the average rifle vs the average carbine.

Just my (lightly informed) opinion.

Lost Sheep

helotaxi
November 5, 2012, 09:19 AM
Barrel length and powder speed are not related.

Based on how I understand your question, you'll get some powder overlap, but not much. You'll get essentially no overlap in bullet selection or primers. For example, all of the "rifle" cartridges that you listed use large rifle primers while the "carbine" cartridges use small (the x39 and 6.8 cases are found with either but the small primer cases are the good ones). The "rifle" cartridges use large diameter bullets and favor heavy-ish pills while the "carbines" are small bores. The 7.62x39 can have either a .308 or .311 bore and the .303 British is a .310. The x39 likes and entirely different weight range of bullets, even one with a .308 bore, than the '06 though. The 6.8 and the .270 share a bore size as well, but again the 6.8 is limited to short, lightweight bullets while the .270 really doesn't get going until you're in a decent bit higher weight range. The larger caes capacities of the "rifle" cartridges favor a slower powder while the "carbines", especially the 6.8 and 7.62x39 need a fairly fast powder thanks to their small case capacity to bore ratio. The 5.56x45 and the .308 share some powder preferences, but that's about it.

IdahoSkies
November 5, 2012, 11:40 AM
Thanks. I guess what I am looking for is a selection of rifle/carbine cartridges that do share bullets/primers/powders, such as 6.8 and .270 and .308 and .300 Blackout. I understand that in the rifle cartridges they will usually use much heavier bullets (150+ for example) while the carbines use much smaller (ie. 90-125). I was wondering if there was any overlap and where that was. Thanks for the input.

I figured that there would be limited powder overlap and that most of the time there would be the small/large primer issue as well, but I have been noodling it my self and coming up pretty blank so I thought I would broaden my mental exercise to include more than what was between my two ears.

cfullgraf
November 5, 2012, 06:25 PM
Thanks. I guess what I am looking for is a selection of rifle/carbine cartridges that do share bullets/primers/powders, such as 6.8 and .270 and .308 and .300 Blackout. .

Make a list of the cartridges that you are interested and then look through your reloading manuals. The manuals will list primers and powders and in many cases, they will overlap each other in many choices listed..

If you do not have any manuals (you should have at least one reloading manual if not more if you are currently reloading), go to Alliant's, Hodgdon's, Ramshot's and Accurate's web sites and you can do the same.

For the few you listed, 270 Win and 308 Win have a number of powders in common. Both use large rifle primers if memory serves me correctly.

300 BLK uses powders along the lines of magnum handgun cartridges.

I do not load for 6.8 SPC so no help there. That is where the manual comes in.

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