1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Heaviest bullet for a 1in12", 26", .308Win

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by hadmanysons, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. hadmanysons

    hadmanysons New Member

    I'm looking into working up a load for my 700 SPS-V with a 1 in 12" twist, 26" long that's chambered in .308. It's shoots 168gr SMK's really well but I want something heavier in the 180gr range to keep it stabilized out to 1000yds but everything I've read says that my barrel my not stabilize something that long/heavy cause my twist rate isn't fast enough. Is this a real concern or should I just buy a box of 185gr Berger VLD's and if it works it works?

  2. 918v

    918v New Member

    What does Berger recommend for their 185gr VLD?
  3. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Active Member

    Berger thinks a 12 twist will stabilize their 185 gr VLD.

    Ought to do great with a 175 gr SMK.

    I have been fooling with 155 gr Scenars and will likely try the 155.5 gr Berger. Less recoil and the higher velocity makes up for the lighter weight and slightly lower BC.
  4. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    The 155 Lapuas (or 155.5 Bergers) at over 2900 fps is the best long-range .308 load. At the '08 and '09 Steel Safari match, the high 308 shooter for the last two years has used this load (and come in "only" 7th place overall).

    However, I have shot as heavy as the 210gr Berger in my 1:12 24" .308 barrel. At my altitude, it flew fine, however, slow. (At lower altitudes you might need more twist.)
  5. hadmanysons

    hadmanysons New Member

    Thanks for the tips guys, i'll try some of 175's first and go from there.
  6. USSR

    USSR Active Member

    Myself and a lot of guys shoot 190SMK's out of our 1-12" twist .308's. Don't believe everything you read about .30 caliber twist rates.

  7. responsiblehunter

    responsiblehunter New Member

    what about 24 inch barrel?

    I have a weatherby vanguard .308 win with a 24 inch barrel, with a 1:12 twist. Whats going to be the difference considering my barrel has 2 inches less than the 26 as far as pushing heavier loads like a 180gr?

    Where can I go to figure out the heaviest bullets I can push? There are a lot of factors to consider but where have you guys noticed a huge drop off in velocity and foot pounds performance with heavy gr bullets in .308?

    Glad to hear what you said about twist rates-- I need to learn which twist rates work with which gr bullets in my .308, but if you think it isn't written in stone thats excellent.
  8. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    There is no limit other than twist rate. Different bullet types of the same mass may stabilize differently. If you are interested in a particular bullet, you have to test it. Alternatively, you can use the required twist rate suggested by the bullet manufacturer.

    Heavy is a matter of perspective. There are .30 caliber bullets up to 240gr, while .308's sweet spot is more like 150-180 grains.
  9. rbernie

    rbernie Active Member

    Bullet stabilization is a function of twist rate, velocity, and bullet length (not weight) as well as temperature and altitude.

    As Zak stated, the sweet spot for 308 tends to be in the 150gr-180gr region. I would expect the Vanguard to be oriented towards using commonly-available hunting bullets in the 150gr-165gr range. If you're looking for VLD designs, then you may get better results in the lighter ranges (altho USSR's experiences suggest the possibly of getting heavier bullets to work well).
  10. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    It's interesting to note the military M14 rifle also has a 1/12 twist, 22" barrel.

    The new standard GI M118 Long Range Match & Sniper ammo uses a 175 grain boat-tail Sierra matchking.

    So I think your 26" 1/12 would handle those or 180's just peachy keen!

  11. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

  12. responsiblehunter

    responsiblehunter New Member

    did you mean for my 24" or did you type that for the 26"
  13. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Old age brain fade I guess.

    I thought it said 26" when I read it the first time.

    But regardless of that, your barrel is 2" longer, giving higher velocity, then the M14 Sniper rifle being used in Iraq with 175 grain SMK's as we speak. The M40 Remington sniper rifles are 1/12 24" using the same ammo

    But 175 SMK's are definately not hunting bullets.

    I just responded to your other post concerning 600 yard hunting you are trying to now delete.
    You might want to read that.

  14. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Barrel length has little to do with twist rate provided it's not extremely short (SBR).
  15. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    A student of mine whacked one or two antelope at 475 with an M1A. It's doable.
  16. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    I would offer that 475 yards is not nearly as difficult as 600 yards!

    In either estimating the range, making the shot, or getting the bullet to expand as designed.

  17. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    I agree that difficulty is not linear with distance.
  18. USSR

    USSR Active Member

    The place you go is the range. I recommend going to a different powder with the heavy bullets than you might normally use with the lighter bullets. The hands-down best I've used with 190SMK's is VihtaVouri N550. I get 2700fps using this powder.

  19. hadmanysons

    hadmanysons New Member

    Holy resurrected thread batman!
  20. responsiblehunter

    responsiblehunter New Member

    Thanks thats some good info- off to the range, RC-my other post was almost identical to this one, i didnt mean to put it up. I did read and appreciate the response what you say about hunting those ranges and getting closer I agree with.

Share This Page