Reloading start-up

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by taltexan, Jan 25, 2020.

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  1. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    I’ve have most of my equipment ready to start. I’m looking at powder and primers. I don’t want to buy a lot of different powders. Reading the reloading manuals it looks like H4895 is a good rifle powder to start. What brand of primer do you recommend in large and small rifle. Will be loading 243 to 375 H&H. Suggestions on both of these items. Thanks
     
  2. Highland Lofts

    Highland Lofts Member

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    Here locally when it comes to primers it us take what they have. For probably 90% of the people reliading it really doesnxt mattercwhat brand of primer they end up useing.

    I have been just buying a thousand packs of primers when I got down to a hundred or so.
    My goal this year is to but a case of each size primer (5'000 primers per case) to keep stored up and then buy three of the 1'000 packs in each size to use.
    What ever you find to use buy enough of them to last a little while incase they have a different type next time you need some.

    Have fun reloading and start on the low side & work your way up to the max.
    For me my most accurate loads are from mid range loads down.
    Very seldom did the max charge out shoot the lower charges.
     
  3. Hokie_PhD

    Hokie_PhD Member

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    Congrats

    All of the powders available can be overwhelming. So I can’t help you there. I’d suggest searching through the discussions here and find a few that are used by people with similar calibers and doing similar shooting to you.

    For instance I can tell you I use H335 but thats for plinking 223. I’ve used AA #7, Win231 and BE86 for pistol. I hate #7 and love BE86. Win231 is in between and good for all uses while I make lighter loads with the BE86.

    While it sucks, I’d suggest getting a pound of one or two that you decide to try and then use it for a bit. Play with loads, bullets etc. it’ll take some time but you’ll start to see things you like and dislike. Take lots of notes.

    Repeat with another powder. And another. Then once you find the one(s) you like then buy in bulk.

    Until then work on being safe and learning good habits and making safe loads. As you do you’ll start making custom loads that you’ll love.
     
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  4. Eddy19

    Eddy19 Member

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    During my highpower rifle competition days, I tried perhaps eight different powders and settled on H4895 for .308 with 168 gr. Sierra or Hornady HPBT. Can't speak too much about primers but I used WLR or Remington.
     
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  5. South Prairie Jim

    South Prairie Jim Member

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    I recommend testing primers as well as powder and Bullets. 243 and 375 H&H are so vastly different I had to check my manual pictured below.
    I’m not seeing any H4895 tested on either caliber you speak of.
    J
     

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  6. lordpaxman

    lordpaxman Member

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    I had that same thought at one time. One powder to rule them all. What I found though a lot of load workups is there are a range of powders for a caliber and different bullet combinations. My .243 prefers H4831SC for heavier bullets like the 103, and 4350 for the lighter bullets like the 85 HP. Sure, you can open manuals and see H or IMR 4895 data and they’ll definitely go bang, but it may not be the optimum powder for your load. If you’re set on 4895, it’s a good powder but be advised you may end up with a few more bottles of different powder. I don’t load 375 so I don’t have a recommendation.
    I’ve had good luck with Winchester, Federal and CCI primers. I haven’t gotten to the point of needing match grade primers, just the regular ones do well for me. The PRS crowd will run though different primers to see which one gets the group and SD to a minimum but for just starting out if you stick with the big names they’ll work fine.
    Good luck and be safe with this great hobby!
     
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  7. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    I’m using Hornady Handbook vol. 2 and it shows 4895 for nearly everything.
     

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  8. KW-HD Rider

    KW-HD Rider Member

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    I think you will find that you will "need" more than a couple powders but it is also good to start with one caliber to learn on. For instance you said you had a .243, which is a great caliber to learn on as it doesn't use as much powder as some larger calibers and I have found it fairly forgiving.

    I also started my rifle reloading with .243 and started by selecting the bullet I wanted to use, 87 grain Vmax, then checked for the best powders as recommended in the Hornady loading manual. I purchased H4350 and Varget to get started along with CCI BR primers. Worked up loads in each and had a lot of fun and frustation testing and documenting all the loads tried. I finally settled on a very good and consistent load using Varget. I used both the OCW (optimal charge weight) method and the shoot lots of groups method.

    Have fun and enjoy the quest as it really never ends. You will find lots of help here and of course lots of opinions which is great.
     
  9. South Prairie Jim

    South Prairie Jim Member

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    Hells Bells !
    Will ya look at that, I could have saved a fortune.:oops:
    J
     
  10. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    I know I’ll end up with several different powders but I wanted to start with one if possible. I have been following the reloading threads in several gun forums and seems like no one uses the same powder for a specific weight bullet or caliber.
     
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  11. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    Jim, I’m trying......lol
     
  12. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    I use only cci primers now but everyone has a favorite. There really is not one powder that can do a great job. Unique will make almost every cartridge on the planet go boom, but might not be optimized to any of the guns you want to shoot. H4895 is close to rl-15 which is close to ar-comp which is close to varget. This group of powders is very popular and in high demand. The 4350 burn rate is also very popular and may serve your larger cartridges better. Rifles eat a ton of powder so a pound will go fast and you will not a bunch laying around if you dont care for it.
     
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  13. Hondo 60
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    Hondo 60 Member

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    sorry but I don't reload those calibers.

    Just wanted to say welcome to thr
    & welcome to the addict... oh, hobby, ya I mean hobby :eek:
     
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  14. lordpaxman

    lordpaxman Member

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    I should have remembered way back when I got started and my mentor grabbed the can of IMR 4895 and said this will load a whole bunch of calibers! I had started on .22-250, and for that caliber it turned out to be a great powder for my gun. You may get one or two or a few opinions here, of course. IMR4895 and H4895 are not interchangeable, but either one will work for you. Some believe the H version is less temperature sensitive it that’s a factor for you.

    Indeed. If you’re just getting started, it’s very helpful, some would say necessary, if you have load data for the specific bullet you’re using. You mentioned the Hornady manual, vol 2, are you using Hornady bullets? If not it would behoove you to get the load data for that bullet and powder combination in the interest of safety. Have fun!
     
  15. South Prairie Jim

    South Prairie Jim Member

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    @taltexan
    Just a word of caution for a new Reloader, H 4895 builds pressure quickly so start low and work up.
    J
     
  16. stillquietvoice
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    stillquietvoice Contributing Member

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    I too have used these three primers. From my testing the fed and cci are slightly hotter than win primers. Federal primers in my area are also slightly higher in price.

    As far as powders go I've used both 4895's in 223 to 7mm08 and gotten pretty good results. The 4895 powders are also similar in burn rate to 4064, good all purpose propellants but not optimal for all calibers and bullet weights.

    I've also used blc2, win 760, and imr 4350. I did a load work up for 150 gr 3006 with blc2 for my SIL but haven't gotten his results yet. In the 06 there's about 6 powders that produce better velocity but I had it on hand and it has been used in several military cartridges in the past.

    I have a question though what is your intended use for your rifles? Target shooting or hunting, what type of game.... If for hunting you may need a more optimal powder.

    Edit with smaller grain powders for use in large capacity cases the power will not fill the case as much. This allows for the possibility of over charges more than with powders that have a better case fill.
     
  17. mdi

    mdi Member

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    Welcome to the wonderful, oft confusing and frustrating world of reloading! I'm a firm believer of K.I.S.S., especially for mew reloaders. I would suggest you start with one caliber, whichever you choose and check your reloading manual's powder section and find a powder that is appropriate for the caliber you choose, and/or check powder manufacturer's web sites for powder descriptions/recommendations. Then find a load in your manual (powder. bullet, primer) before you buy components. Load and test that one caliber load combination and work up a load. When you are satisfied (or bored) with that caliber do the same for the next cartridge You may end up with one powder for each gun, but that's not a problem...

    Go slow. Double check everything. Most important, have fun...
     
  18. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    Thanks everyone for your support and comments. Hunting mostly, coyotes and hogs but I like to practice a lot. I have several different calibers that I shoot so I wanted to start reloading.
     
  19. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    For a brand new guy I would recommend you check out jonnys reloading bench and a few more on YouTube. He conducts optimum charge weight OCW tests on a lot of guns and calibers. He uses almost every powder known to man so you can observe the start to finish process. He turned me onto at comp, and it's a great powder. Using what you have easily available may be the most important. Alliant, hogden. Imr and ramshot all have everything you will need. I would choose alliant because bass pro Carrie's the entire series and is the producer of unique of which I am very fond. Once you know what is carried local you can make a much better decision.
     
  20. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    Locally don’t offer much, I’m fairly rural. I generally will have to buy from the internet. I’ll check out your YouTube guy. Thanks
     
  21. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    If your internet only powder valley is one of my favorite. If your in the market right now midway has free hazmat right now.
     
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  22. taltexan

    taltexan Member

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    Thanks, I know about powder valley and they are generally cheaper. Going to look at midway now...
     
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  23. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    A new reloader is doing themselves a disservice by trying to fit various cartridges into the same powder. The savings becomes imaginary when you spend extra time and components chasing a proper load with the wrong powder.
     
  24. South Prairie Jim

    South Prairie Jim Member

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    Been there:oops:
     
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  25. lordpaxman

    lordpaxman Member

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    We each learn in our own ways. Sometimes a sub-optimum route leads to interesting and lasting lessons. Perhaps a new thread with “when I started, this is what I thought/did, and now look at me”.
     
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