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powder for 18" .308 ?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by redclay, Sep 14, 2011.

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  1. redclay

    redclay Member

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    I am reloading for a DPMS Lr 308b with 18" barrell. Wondering what powders would you experienced guys use. Have been loading Varget and my groups are not what I think they should be. Any recommendations?
     
  2. MtnCreek

    MtnCreek Member

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    4895 (IMR or H) or Reloader 15
     
  3. Sin City Shootist

    Sin City Shootist Member

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    Yup 4895 works great. I use Tac because of the price and it seems to meter pretty good and the burn rate is real close to 4895. I love Re-15 but it maybe to slow of a powder for a gas gun unless you load it light. On my FNAR Re-15 powder is still burning when it hit the gas port. You shouldn't really use powder slower then IMR 4064 on a gas gun, just my opinion.
     
  4. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    Another DPMS Lr 308b. Are you using small base dies to reload? Just wondered as 3 other posters had a problem using standard dies. IMR 4895 works well for 308 win.
     
  5. MEHavey

    MEHavey Member

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    You need a faster powder than is normaly used if you want good optimal velocities

    Cartridge : .308 Win.
    Bullet : .308, 150, Sierra FMJ BT 2115
    Cartridge O.A.L: 2.800 inch
    Barrel Length : 16.5 inch
    Matching Maximum Pressure: 54,000 psi

    Case Fill: ≥ 90% ≤ 105% (full case/little compression)
    Burn: ≥ 95%
    Limited to commonly-available powders

    IN ORDER:
    Code:
    Type	       WT(gr)       fill(%)  vel(fps)   Pmax(psi)   Burn(%)
    IMR 3031  	           43.9	101	2,654	54,000	100
    Winchester 748	46.5	93	2,641	54,000	98
    IMR 4895 	          46.5	100	2,637	54,000	95
    Hodgdon BL-C2	48.5	96	2,634	54,000	97
    Accurate 2495	44.4	101	2,626	54,000	100
    Accurate 2520	47.0	98	2,623	54,000	98
    Hodgdon H4895	45.0	97	2,614	54,000	96
    Ramshot TAC	45.6	92	2,603	54,000	97
    Hodgdon H322	42.1	94	2,602	54,000	99
    Vihtavuori N540	47.1	101	2,600	54,000	99
    Vihtavuori N530	43.6	94	2,595	54,000	97
    Vihtavuori N140	45.6	100	2,583	54,000	99
    Accurate 2460	45.6	92	2,582	54,000	98
    Alliant RL-12	44.1	93	2,573	54,000	99
    Accurate 2230	44.7	90	2,572	54,000	98
    Alliant RL-10x	39.7	91	2,571	54,000	100
    Hodg Benchmark	43.0	94	2,550	54,000	97
    Vihtavuori N133	42.1	99	2,539	54,000	100
    Vihtavuori N130	40.5	94	2,527	54,000	100
    ACHTUNG -- NOTICE -- ATTENTION
    Take These as Suggested Powder Options Only.
    Refer to loading manuals for starting loads.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2011
  6. Sin City Shootist

    Sin City Shootist Member

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    I bought 1000 rounds of once fired LC brass and I had to small base full length every single one of those pieces of brass before they would feed in my gun. Come to find out they were fired from a machine gun which has a lot looser clearances. After that I've been using a Lee collet neck die and they feed just fine.
     
  7. velocette

    velocette Member

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    With my DPMS LR 308B, 18" barrel, I got my best accuracy using 41 gr of
    IMR 4895 under a Sierra or Nosler 168 gr JHPBT match bullet in Federal brass with Federal primers. When using Winchester or RP brass I used 41.5 gr
    With RL 15 I used 42 gr with Fed brass. I use standard Lee dies & resizing brass from the DPMS is always easy. Easier than from 90% of any range pickup commercial
    brass.
    Accuracy was and is consistently under 1 moa with 10 shot groups.
    The fed brass & 4895 load was chrono'ed at 2490 fps.
    The LR 308 is one fine autoloading rifle. Accurate, reliable, powerful and just seeing it makes GFWs (Gun Fearing Wusses) wet their pants.

    Roger
     
  8. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    looking for faster powders it has nothing to do with the length of the barrel only. Only if you are going to shoot light bullets seek the faster powder. A lighter charge will help but if you have the standard bullets or the heavies you need to stick to medium rate. With 18" is what you get you gain accuracy and sacrifice speed. It should be an amazing 500 yards system with 150-168 grainers. Now don't go and try to shoot a mule at 600 yards.
     
  9. 35 Whelen

    35 Whelen Member

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    I use H4895 in my 18 1/2" Scout rifle, but Varget and Re15 are both great powders. I stuck with the 4895 'cause I have a large jug of it.
    308's also benefit from ball powder such as WW748 and 760. I personally don't care for them because they're all double-base which generally means temperature sensitivity.
    35W
     
  10. codefour

    codefour Member

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    I too use IMR 4895 in all my .308 loads. I do not own an AR-10 but is second on my list of new rifles.

    I do however have a Springfield M1A Super Match in .308 that has a 20 inch barrel. I load 41.0 grains of I4895 over a 168 BTHP and consistently get sub MOA accuracy. I do not use small base dies but will eventually try them when I remember to order them. I have had not feeding issues with standard RCBS dies set to a full length resize.
     
  11. redclay

    redclay Member

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    I use Lee standard dies for the 308 and they are working fine. I use RCBS small base dies for the 223 simply because I salvage so much range brass in 223
     
  12. MEHavey

    MEHavey Member

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    You did look at the data, didn't you?
    It is very much both barrel length and bullet weight dependent.

    I'm afraid I have no idea how a shorter barrel increases accuracy,
    and extended ranges require optimal muzzle velocity -- which generally requires
    matching 'a' faster powder to the chosen bullet weight for shorter the barrel length.

    ... if you want to keep your velocity up/avoid increased muzzle blast/flash
     
  13. MtnCreek

    MtnCreek Member

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    A shorter barrel is more ridged than a longer barrel of the same contour. All things being equal, a shorter barrel could be more accurate until it reaches the point where reduced velocities start to affect accuracy.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  14. Kevin Rohrer

    Kevin Rohrer Member

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    I am using 4198 in my 20" Scout Rifle, using 110gr. V-Max bullets for coyotes. I picked this powder to reduce muzzle blast and it does the job.
     
  15. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    I tried hard to like AA 2520 because it meters so well. But it was not as accurate in my bolt action and Krieger barrelled AR as the extruded powders, so I shoot mostly Varget with some Re 15.
     
  16. Ateam-3

    Ateam-3 Member

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    I shoot a Remington 600 w/ an 18" barrel. I have tried IMR 3031 and Hod Bl-C2 and enjoyed good results. In 1995, I switched to Win 760 for this rifle. It has been the best powder for me.
     
  17. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    What data? Do not need to look at any data, it is the same with any load in the universe.
    fast powders with long barrels and Heavy bullets with do not mix. you will hold that bottleneck pressure for too long to being safe. Actually less case capacity in this case plays to your advantage for fast light bullets so the purpose must be short-mid range. In the end everything balances out. A short solid bullet might be a good option as it sustains a tad higher BC but with the light weight, and grooves normally shows less pressure. Also the lack of S.D. is compensated by the fact that the solid bullets stay together through glass and other hard objects. Anyway I am drifting away from the subject. As I said you give up speed for extreme accuracy.

    All things being equal a shorter barrel is more accurate. The tone in the barrel is going to be a higher one and that translates into more accuracy nodes with any load.
    Many swat/police rifles are in the 20" even 18" length as the average engagement distance is normally below 100 yards no heavy bullets (high BC) is needed. The flash / recoil is managed with brakes or suppressor that can be taken off. So these systems are normally very compact, light and extremely accurate. I any case a 18" or 20" 308 Win is an awesome 500 yards rifle with the right loads and training.
     
  18. redclay

    redclay Member

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    Guys, thanks for all the info, might be more than I can use at the present time. I have picked up some H 4895 and some 168grn Match Kings. I will load up some samples and see where they hit paper and go from there.

    Thanks again
     
  19. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    You should also buy one box of 155gr A-max. I heard they are very good with shorties. Also the V-maxes. I use them in all the calibers, they are not too expensive, great BCs and shoot like the house is on fire. SMKs are also awesome but that 155grainer is a nice choice for a shorty.

    I found this article where this guy tested in a 16" SPR home made build system. I tried a 155gr AMAX load from HSM. Buy a box and If your system likes it all that you have to do is to find how to replicate that one.

    http://www.snipercentral.com/boltdmr.phtml

    4895 is a good choice and very versatile powder but it might be a tad slow so I would also try:

    (From slower to faster)

    - BLC-2.
    - Winchester 748 .. burns very clean and amazingly cold. (no much heat).
    - A 2230
    - Benchmark
    - H322

    Follow the bullet manufacturer data. Verify with several reliable sources. Start low and work you loads up slowly so you can stay away from the red!!

    Have fun and be safe.
     
  20. ants

    ants Member

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    redclay...

    You are almost perfectly right there.
    Optimum perfect load for my 16" and 20" is IMR 4895 43.5 grains with 168 Match King
    in brass weighing 180 grains (plus or minus 2 grains).
    Adjust powder charge a tenth or two up, if your brass weighs less.
    (Note: That is sorta my handload Federal Gold Medal Match equivalent, ymmv.)
    Go ahead and shoot up that H4895, it is nearly identical.
    Then buy IMR next time.

    If you go up to the 175gr Match King, try the same powder charge OR go to R15.

    A decent alternative to both powders is IMR4064. It's good.
    But not as good as the other two.

    ALWAYS go to your manuals and verify data.
    Don't take my word for it on the loads listed above.
    Check them against published data first.




    My own dumb little personal point of view:
    I don't argue about short-barrel-fast-powder or long-barrel-slow-powder.
    In the AR10/LR308 platform, accuracy is found in consistency, cycling the action, and shootability.
    All the velocity charts in the world mean nothing if you can't get those three things.
    Velocity is highly meaningful in a bolt gun at 600 to 1000 yards.
    Your 18" DPMS is probably not a 1000 yard gun. Just go for best accuracy, reliability and shootability.



    Small Base sizing dies: Neither my Armalite AR10 nor my DPMS LR308 need them.
    In fact, I don't even have to screw my dies (new Lee, old Herters) all the way down to the shellholder.
     
  21. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    BE CAREFULL IMR4895 is different than Hodgdon 4895 so follow Hodgdon as ants pointed out. Alos check manufacturer bullet loading charts.
    As I said, try the Amax 155 and some of the faster ones in 16". IMRs are good too.
     
  22. Wireman134

    Wireman134 Member

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    As a general rule, barrels 18" and over get maximum burn of powder.
     
  23. 1stmarine

    1stmarine Member

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    Not with the H4895 and varget powders. 20" is more likely that's why I suggested a faster powder with a lower drag bullet.
     
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