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Load Data for 308 using Win 748

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by tkcomer, Oct 21, 2006.

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  1. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Hey all. Getting ready to load some 308 shells. I’m using CCI 200 primers and Sierra 168 Matchking Match bullets. My old Sierra book lists 48.6grn in the Winchester 748 powder as the max load. I bought The Complete Reloading Manual for the 308 as I wanted to see the newer powders the old book didn’t list. This book lists the max 748 charge as 44.8grn of powder. The two books also show different loads for the same velocity. An example is 45.1grn in the old book versus 43.4grn in the new book for 2600 fps. Since I have 748 powder on hand, I had originally planned on using 47grn as a starting point. Well below max in one book but over max in the other. Since the new book arrived, I’m kinda at a loss at which data to go by. Has the 748 powder changed since Hodgen started making it or is this a liability issue? Any help would be appreciated.
     
  2. P0832177

    P0832177 member

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    Got news for you, Hodgdon does not mfg any powder! They market powders!

    I would consult the data on the web sites and pay attention to the components used, ie brass makes a big difference in the loading data! Follow up and then make your load development plans!
     
  3. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    The brass is nickel plated police tactical rounds. They are some sort of law enforcement only round that a cop buddy gave me. It’s marked FC/WIN 308. I shot a few of it through my gun and it is much more accurate than the 70s military surplus I have at the house. The Winchester site says the max is 42gr of powder. That’s less than the minimum in one book and .1gr on the other book Both of these are Sierra recommendations. The wide variation in load data has me concerned. Especially when I had originally planned to put 47gr as a starting point.
     
  4. USSR

    USSR Member

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    tkcomer,

    My 50th Anniversary Sierra manual lists up to 46.8gr of 748 with the 168SMK. I would start a couple grains below that and work up from there, looking for high pressure signs.

    Don
     
  5. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    The funny thing is, if I wasn’t thinking of swapping to a new powder, I wouldn’t have even bought this book. People here seem to like Varget, so I wanted some load data for that. I even bought one of the books in 243. My favorite load for it was a 70gr Sierra Matchking with 37gr of powder. .9gr less than max in the old book. Now, 748 is not even listed for that bullet in the new book. Speer lists 46g max for their 168gr bullet and they use a CCI magnum primer for 748. Guess I’m going to have to cut back the load I originally planned to use.
     
  6. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Fav .308 load, loads easy and is very accurate, 48.5 grains 748 150 Nosler BT Remington M7 20" barrel, clockes 2773 fps at muzzle.

    Same charge with 140 grain Barnes X bullet 2822 fps and shoots to same POI as the Nosler load.

    This load does not seem excessive, no high pressure signs of any kind. Both these loads are 1 MOA out of my little pencil barrel.
     
  7. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Well, right now I’ve just loaded 100 rounds with 44gr. I went by the second book. I’ll have to see how they group when the weather clears up and it isn’t so windy. 37gr in the 243 does flatten some of the primers, but not all of them. I’m pretty close to max on those cases. I’ll see what this load does on the 308. I like 748 as this stuff meters so consistently. The scale will barely point just a tad over or under the load setting. I keep hearing Varget is hard to meter. Not sure if I like that. Tried 3031 years ago in the 243. That stuff wouldn’t meter worth a crap on my RCBS powder measure.
     
  8. SILENTSOUL308

    SILENTSOUL308 Member

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    I use Win 748 powder on my 308 loads, here is my load data. It pretty much clones the hornady TAP ammo in 168gr.

    Case: Winchester
    Powder: 44.8gr WIN 748
    Bullet: Sierra MatchKing 168gr BTHP Moly
    Primer: Winchester

    I get roughly 2650 fps out of this load, I've found it to be highly accurate. (of course I weigh EVERY charge...I just dont trust the progressive presses for some reason....must be in my head)
     
  9. USSR

    USSR Member

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    tkcomer,

    Ball powder will always meter better than extruded powder. However, extruded powders will generally produce more accurate loads. If you're looking for accuracy, use an extruded powder like RL15, IMR or H4895, or Varget, dump your charge from your powder measure onto your scale and weigh it.

    Don
     
  10. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Well, I’m still using the single station press. I weigh every 10th charge and that’s what I like about the 748. It always comes in just about right on the money. I’ll try these rounds I have now. I don’t have enough powder to load another 100 rounds. Hence the new book. I might try Varget, but I’m leery about how it will meter. Does the RE-15 meter pretty good? Sierra lists that as their most accurate load with the 168 Matchking in the new book. Trying to figure out the best powder to use is frustrating.
     
  11. db_tanker

    db_tanker Member

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    urr...Nickel plated cases are bad mojo. stick with the regular stuff...I have pulled off rims while resizing this stuff...and it was lubed. Standard federal brass is generally kinda soft and tends to stretch more than most on the first firing, but once trimmed and neck-sized to a specific chamber, you will be happy.

    There will be some variation on reloading manuals...some more than others. What should you do? Get as many manuals as you can afford to. Then look at all of them when trying to find a good starting load...See if they put pressure readings for their loads, along with velocity and such...find where they meet and go from there...

    You will also notice that some reloading manuals list ball powders needing a magnum primer to light them but a standard primer for the stick powders. I generally follow this rule. Stick powders use CCI-200's and ball powders get a Winchester Mag primer.


    As far as powders go...748 is just fine. Varget and RL-15 is fine choices for stick powders. And they will meter fine. What most rifle shooters do is throw a charge shy of the desired weight.Then trickle up to the proper number.



    But if you want to go with a good ball powder for 308 try some AA2520.

    This stuff isn't called Camp Perry powder for nothing...out of my Mauser it is wonderful.

    My hot-rod load is a Speer 125 gr HP flat base and 43 gr. of AA2520. That load will give me 1" groups at 130 yards.

    My best load though is 39 gr. of 2520 under a Hornady 168gr AMAX moly. that load will put one ragged hole in paper at 100 all day long. Plus it won't stress the brass, rifle or shooter. :)

    Both those loads use Hirtenberger mil-spec brass and WLRM primers.

    D
     
  12. USSR

    USSR Member

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    tkcomer,

    Read this again, "Ball powder will always meter better than extruded powder". Varget and RE-15 are extruded powders, hence they won't meter as well as W748.

    Don
     
  13. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Well, I use IMR 4227 in the 44 mag and it meters pretty darn well. That’s an extruded powder. That 3031 was like pencil lead. That’s why I asked about the RE-15. It is listed for both the 243 and the 308. As is Varget. The AA 2520 is not listed for the 243. But then a friend talked me into buying 800-X for the 357 off of him as he buys in bulk for his shotgun. It’s a flake powder. It doesn’t meter that bad. But no where near as consistent as the 4227. So I can meter extruded powder if the kernels aren’t that big. Jeeze, I ask a few questions and end up with more questions. Is the Federal brass that bad? They went through the die pretty easy and I’ve trimmed it back. I have a bunch of 308 military shells. Only about 50 empty cases so far. I use that to practice trigger control though the rounds themselves aren’t that accurate. They’re marked OFV 77. Standard primer but I’d have to trim the crimp out of them. I did notice that all powders listed in the old book that are still listed in the new book have the loads cut back. But only one other that is cut back as drastic as the 748. Keep the info coming. I have less than a pound of 748 left and that won’t last long filling these shells. Then I’ll do a bulk buy on another powder. These hazardous shipping fees are killing me.
     
  14. USSR

    USSR Member

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    I'm assuming you are looking for an accurate .308 load. You get a little more or a little less powder in a handgun load (assuming you're not loading hot), no big deal. With an accurate rifle, you want a more precise load. If your measure throws an extruded powder well, Great. If not, then drop it into your scales pan and weigh it.

    The Federal brass is soft. Good for only a couple of loadings, and then your primer pockets will expand. Stay away from loading the OFV 77. It's Indian ammo, and not noted for it's quality, to say the least.

    Don
     
  15. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Ok, so the OFV gets pitched. Trigger practice only. What’s a good brand of brass in 308? Right now, the best I can tell, the leading powder is Varget. It’s one of the few that’s listed in 243 and 308 in the bullet combos I use. Oh, and thanks for all the replies. I keep thinking I should just give the gang my credit card and order this stuff for me.
     
  16. USSR

    USSR Member

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    Lapua. It's a little bit more expensive than the others, but it's the best and lasts a long time. Other good ones are Winchester, LC Match, and Hornady Match. As far as powder goes, any powder in the same burn rate range as Varget will work. Reloading manuals don't list every powder, only the ones they tried. I have used Reloader 15, and actually prefer it to Varget. Since it's a little slower than Varget, any safe load with Varget will be safe with RE-15.

    Don
     
  17. db_tanker

    db_tanker Member

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    Winchester brass will be fine. Remington is a good second choice. Both are plentiful and easy to come by.


    I also have good luck with some of the military brass. Watch your loads with this stuff, however as its thicker walled. This will cause pressure issues...so use starting loads and work up.


    Federal isn't TOO bad...if you keep your loads off the max end of the spectrum, you will be fine.

    And as far as the Indian brass goes, I can't say about the OFV stuff because there was good batches and bad batches. There are several threads on this here and over on Fal Files board. I DO have experience with the KF stamped Indian and it seems to be pretty good so far.

    D
     
  18. Grump

    Grump Member

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    In Lake City US Military brass, 43.0 of 748 under any 168-gr HPBT match bullet looks like max in my experience. It also shoots 1 MOA or under at 200 yards out of a gas gun.
     
  19. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Man, you guys have a load of knowledge. Right now I’m looking at Varget as I have data for the bullets I’ll shoot. I’ll look in to the other brass. As far as accuracy loads go, well, the gun will out shoot me. That cop buddy that gave me the brass is one of the sniper dudes on the force. He uses some sort of Remington 700 police gun. He can out shoot me with my own gun. But I’m not far behind him with my Weatherby Vanguard in 243. For some reason I can shoot the 243 better then the 308. I hate to admit it, but I flinch with the 308. I don’t know why but I do. Guess I’m a wuss. Thanks again for the info. Now it’s time to scratch my head and figure out exactly what to order.
     
  20. db_tanker

    db_tanker Member

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    I don't really think its the recoil, tkcomer. Get yourself some snap-caps and work on your trigger pull. That would be my first suggestion. Make sure you use the tip of your finger and all the other yadda yadda yadda...(images of Charles Bronson telling pesant villagers "SQUEEZE!". Magnificent Seven)


    Second work on your rest position. Cheek weld, hand position, barrel/vise position, etc etc.

    It won't happen overnight but just by changing one or two things that your doing (and probably don't realize) you can shrink up your groups fairly reasonably.


    Also wanted to add to the brass thing...

    Federal brass is soft, yes. And others have said that they are good for a few loadings and no more. I need to mention that if your using a gas-gun (M1A, AR-10, FAL, etc) then the brass will be good for 3 or so loadings due to your having to full length size the brass every time. A bolt-rifle, however, can use neck-sized brass and you can get 5 or 6 loadings safely, and possibly more if your reasonable on the velocities/pressures.

    MTCW
    D
     
  21. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    The gun is a stainless Remington 700 varmint model. Heavy fluted barrel. The trigger has a heavier pull than the Weatherby 243, but I don’t think that can be the problem. It’s just me. The cop’s police 700 has an even heavier pull, and I scatter bullets in that gun also. But one thing is for sure, I can print much tighter groups with his tactical rounds than those military surplus rounds that I have been using. Maybe, tomorrow I’ll get a chance at the reloads I’ve made. On a side note, how does one know when a rifle brass is worn out? My 243 brass is probably on its 4th reload with no visible signs of problems. And it’s loaded heavy according to the “new” data I see. That’s one of the reasons I need advice on these powders. The data no longer matches up with my old book.
     
  22. 44AMP

    44AMP Member

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    Books change

    Different test frearms are used. Max load means max safe load for the components in the test firearm! You use different brass, a different primer, a different brand of bullet (same weight) and you have just changed the max safe load, in their gun! In your gun things could be quite different.

    Always work up your load from 10% below the starting load in the books. Anything else is borrowing trouble. You may get away with it for years, but if it bites you, it can bite hard.

    Working up loads in small batches until you get to where you want is a small price to pay to ensure you don't damage a gun, or yourself. Think of it as an insurance cost. Some guns will take loads above "book"max. Others won't make it to "book max" safely. Every gun is different.

    reloading manuals give you a starting point, and report their results as an indicator or guideline, your actual results may be quite different. They may not be different, but safety and the word "may" are poor companions.
     
  23. db_tanker

    db_tanker Member

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    Some people load the brass until it fails.

    Then others keep all their brass segregated and a close count of how many loads has ran through them. After X number of loadings, it goes in a bucket and off to the recycle center.

    44AMP speaks gospel, too. that kind of stuff can't be stressed enough when your working up handloads. one of the best safety devices is a reloading manual. the more you have, the safer you will be. I have Sierra, Hornady, Nosler, Lyman, Speer, and Vhitavouri...along with a computer to check loads on IMR and Hodgdon's websites.


    Once you get comfortable with the handloads you have, I would also start looking into altering your COAL. Seat the bullet to about a 1/16th to the rifling lands. Stoney Point makes a gauge to check this, and you can also get some Cerrosafe to get a chamber cast done. Most gunsmiths can do this for you, however. Its kinda hard to do with a bolt-rifle so that might be a decent idea, too. This way, you know what the inside of your chamber looks like and its true dimensions.

    D
     
  24. YodaVader

    YodaVader Member

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    I have owned two Rem 700s in .308 - the first was a 700VS and the second a 700P. Both 26" heavy barrels with HS stock. Win 748 was my main powder and gave me good results with Hornady and Sierra 168 match bullets. Loaded to 43.0 grains worked well for me.
    [​IMG]
    Varget - I have started to use it for .223 and it has given me good results with the 69 Sierra and with all the posts here regarding it's use in the .308 I would try Varget as well if I ever get bit by the .308 bug again.
     
  25. tkcomer

    tkcomer Member

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    Well the cable went out and here I sit waiting on them to show up “sometime in the afternoon”. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to test my loads today and it’s supposed to rain the next several days. I bought a RCBS precision mic but had in my mind I need to fire the brass one time in my gun before I use it. Then I’ll attempt to neck size it for my gun and get the OAL. YodaVader, I have groups that look like that if you throw out the other 47 shots I fired. Of course my holes might be from the 3rd 6th or 10th 5 shot groups. Glad you like the Varget. Is it small grain or pencil lead like stuff?
     
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