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  1. #1
    Member happykal's Avatar
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    looking for an accurate .308 winchester do it all load. moose, deer and range shooting.

    I just started reloading an have found my self drowning in options. What type of Brass? What type of powder? what type of primer? what type of bullets? after spending a couple days in the fetal position on the kitchen floor I continued my research. Does any one have any do it load recipes they'd be willing to share.

    So far i'm going to use once fired federal brass,cci 200 primers, h4895 powder, and nosler ballistic tip 165 grain bullets. I'm still waiting on my nosler manuel so i haven't loaded any rounds also waiting on my sierra 165 game king sbt's.

    Why 165 because it's heavier then 150 and something different then my 180s

    If you can offer any advice that'd be awesome.
    KAL

  2. #2
    Canadian ForcesMember Ryvax's Avatar
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    Tagged for interest. Also will be starting to reload .308

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Rory McCanuck's Avatar
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    You certainly should be able to find a winning load with those components.
    The only thing to watch out for, a lot of Federal brass has "loose" primer pockets. Not that there is anything wrong with them, but the pockets sem to be a touch bigger. I found Winchester primers almost fell into the pockets, and I bought a brick of Federal primers to see if they fit any better. Now that I think about it, I haven't used any of them in Federal brass...
    I'm not sure if CCIs are going to seat nicely or not, just something to keep an eye out for.

    You picked a great chambering to start reloading with, because there is no end of good components that will work well. Unfotunately, as you pointed out, the almost infinite choices can be pretty overwhelming. Just one hint, test one bullet, at one overall length, with varying weights of one powder at a time. Only change one variable at a time, and try to keep it simple for yourself.

    Keep meticulous notes. Keep your targets. Put load notes on the targets.
    That way, when a great looking target falls out of the book onto the floor, and you think "Gee that looks pretty good, I think I'll try that again" the info will be there.
    I say this, because I just ran across a pretty good looking target the other day, with a bullet I know I haven't been able to find a good load for. It took a few minutes to find it in my load notes, and then I remembered. In my load notes is the notation" Fxxxing obnoxious recoil" which relit the lightbulb. I think that load may have been the culprit in causing a broken forearm on my rifle. Shot a really tight little group, but I will definitely not be making any more of them.
    You will not remember it. Write It Down!

    Have fun reloading, its a great pasttime, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

  4. #4
    Member happykal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rory McCanuck View Post
    You certainly should be able to find a winning load with those components.
    The only thing to watch out for, a lot of Federal brass has "loose" primer pockets. Not that there is anything wrong with them, but the pockets sem to be a touch bigger. I found Winchester primers almost fell into the pockets, and I bought a brick of Federal primers to see if they fit any better. Now that I think about it, I haven't used any of them in Federal brass...
    I'm not sure if CCIs are going to seat nicely or not, just something to keep an eye out for.

    You picked a great chambering to start reloading with, because there is no end of good components that will work well. Unfotunately, as you pointed out, the almost infinite choices can be pretty overwhelming. Just one hint, test one bullet, at one overall length, with varying weights of one powder at a time. Only change one variable at a time, and try to keep it simple for yourself.

    Keep meticulous notes. Keep your targets. Put load notes on the targets.
    That way, when a great looking target falls out of the book onto the floor, and you think "Gee that looks pretty good, I think I'll try that again" the info will be there.
    I say this, because I just ran across a pretty good looking target the other day, with a bullet I know I haven't been able to find a good load for. It took a few minutes to find it in my load notes, and then I remembered. In my load notes is the notation" Fxxxing obnoxious recoil" which relit the lightbulb. I think that load may have been the culprit in causing a broken forearm on my rifle. Shot a really tight little group, but I will definitely not be making any more of them.
    You will not remember it. Write It Down!

    Have fun reloading, its a great pasttime, and don't be afraid to ask questions.
    Thanks for the heads up on the loose primer pockets.

    I intend to try the same combination in small groups. Each group I'd try a different powder weight then compare results.

    And notes diffidently will be taken in my "range journal" with every grouping. It's just a small Write In The Rain Journal I take when I go shooting. I at one time took my 870 out with 3 brands of steel shot #3s and BBs and patterned it with IC lead, M Lead, Ext over decoys(Modified steel) and extended Pass Shooting (Full choke Steel). Tried patterened at 10, 20, 30, 40, 50. Modified Lead is basiclly the equivalent to Full Choke steel and patterned the best with 3" Kent #3s and BB Black cloud 3 1/2s. That's the only thing I can remember because a wet dog laying on a journal is a recipe for failure and all data was lost. Hence the Write In The Rain lol. It's okay I have to pattern again any way. I have a 26' barrel now instead of a 28". and I'm changing my choice of ammo. No more 3 1/2 flinchers
    KAL

  5. #5
    Member NorCalDustin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rory McCanuck View Post
    You certainly should be able to find a winning load with those components.
    The only thing to watch out for, a lot of Federal brass has "loose" primer pockets. Not that there is anything wrong with them, but the pockets sem to be a touch bigger. I found Winchester primers almost fell into the pockets, and I bought a brick of Federal primers to see if they fit any better. Now that I think about it, I haven't used any of them in Federal brass...
    I'm not sure if CCIs are going to seat nicely or not, just something to keep an eye out for.

    You picked a great chambering to start reloading with, because there is no end of good components that will work well. Unfotunately, as you pointed out, the almost infinite choices can be pretty overwhelming. Just one hint, test one bullet, at one overall length, with varying weights of one powder at a time. Only change one variable at a time, and try to keep it simple for yourself.

    Keep meticulous notes. Keep your targets. Put load notes on the targets.
    That way, when a great looking target falls out of the book onto the floor, and you think "Gee that looks pretty good, I think I'll try that again" the info will be there.
    I say this, because I just ran across a pretty good looking target the other day, with a bullet I know I haven't been able to find a good load for. It took a few minutes to find it in my load notes, and then I remembered. In my load notes is the notation" Fxxxing obnoxious recoil" which relit the lightbulb. I think that load may have been the culprit in causing a broken forearm on my rifle. Shot a really tight little group, but I will definitely not be making any more of them.
    You will not remember it. Write It Down!

    Have fun reloading, its a great pasttime, and don't be afraid to ask questions.
    I think thats really good advice... So for example, 44 Rem Mag, this is what i do:

    I look in the Lee manual I have, which recommends 13.1gr of BlueDot with a 240gr Jacketed round as a STARTING point and 14.4 as Max (If I remember correctly). I see that Alliant recommends 13.7gr with 240gr Jacketed bullets as a Max.

    I then prepare enough brass all in the same way (for 44 Mag I also seal the primers)... I then start ~1gr lower than the Lee starting point and work up in .2gr increments until almost at the max recommended by Lee.

    So I get these loads:
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.2gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.4gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.6gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.8gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.0gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.2gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.4gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.6gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.8gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 14.0gr of Alliant BlueDot


    I then group them all at the range and am careful too look for signs of over pressure... If lets say I get to 13.8gr and I feel I'm starting to push my Max and I'm not getting enough benefit from it, then I will stop right there. When I get home I will pull the 14.0gr loads. I save my targets which each should have 2-3 groups of 3 or 4 rounds (normally I load 10 rounds at each charge).

    In my case I found that my best groups were with 13.4gr of BlueDot... Next I'll mess with the OAL and will keep it within the Min & Max in my Lee Manual.

  6. #6
    Member happykal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorCalDustin View Post
    I think thats really good advice... So for example, 44 Rem Mag, this is what i do:

    I look in the Lee manual I have, which recommends 13.1gr of BlueDot with a 240gr Jacketed round as a STARTING point and 14.4 as Max (If I remember correctly). I see that Alliant recommends 13.7gr with 240gr Jacketed bullets as a Max.

    I then prepare enough brass all in the same way (for 44 Mag I also seal the primers)... I then start ~1gr lower than the Lee starting point and work up in .2gr increments until almost at the max recommended by Lee.

    So I get these loads:
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.2gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.4gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.6gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 12.8gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.0gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.2gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.4gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.6gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 13.8gr of Alliant BlueDot
    .44 Rem Mag, 240gr Jacketed Bullet, OAL: 1.600", 14.0gr of Alliant BlueDot


    I then group them all at the range and am careful too look for signs of over pressure... If lets say I get to 13.8gr and I feel I'm starting to push my Max and I'm not getting enough benefit from it, then I will stop right there. When I get home I will pull the 14.0gr loads. I save my targets which each should have 2-3 groups of 3 or 4 rounds (normally I load 10 rounds at each charge).

    In my case I found that my best groups were with 13.4gr of BlueDot... Next I'll mess with the OAL and will keep it within the Min & Max in my Lee Manual.
    Yeah that's basically my plan. With a different recipe of course. Just could figure a way to say it in a shorter way.
    KAL

  7. #7
    Member NorCalDustin's Avatar
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    Yeah of course... It's just a process that take time.

  8. #8
    The Gunsmithing Moderator blacksmithden's Avatar
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    I have to agree with everything Rory said. I used to be the worst guy in the world for trying to keep things in my head. It just won't work. Write everything down. The one other thing is, don't become discouraged if things just don't seem to be panning out with a particular load and bullet. I have one Stevens in 300wm that was driving me up the wall. I must have fired over 1000 rounds out of that thing trying to work up a load. I was beginning to think there was either something wrong with me or the rifle. Eventually, I found a bullet and powder it was happy with and got it shooting under an inch.

    In my observations, brass selection isn't that high on the list of accuracy variables. Number one, by far, is powder charge. Number 2 is bullet selection, and number 3 is how you fire them...as in, how hot do you let the rifle get at the range while doing testing. Those 3 things right there make up 90% of your accuracy model. After those, primers, brass, case length, bullet seating depth, ambient temperature when shooting, etc, make up the other 10%.
    Last edited by blacksmithden; 03-29-2013 at 09:51 AM.
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  9. #9
    Member happykal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blacksmithden View Post

    In my observations, brass selection isn't that high on the list of accuracy variables. Number one, by far, is powder charge. Number 2 is bullet selection, and number 3 is how you fire them...as in, how hot do you let the rifle get at the range while doing testing. Those 3 things right there make up 90% of your accuracy model. After those, primers, brass, case length, bullet seating depth, ambient temperature when shooting, etc, make up the other 10%.
    Thanks for the info. You observations are noted and appreciated.
    KAL

  10. #10
    Member happykal's Avatar
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    i went to my local gun shop and ordered more reloading components. 100 brass, 2 containers of imr 4895. 2 containers of h4895. 100 sierra 165 sbt game king, 50 barnes tipped tsx 165grain and a box of 1000 cci 200 primers. I didnt get the total cost from him yet. he has to see what he can get in right now, but i used cabelas prices as a reference. I had no idea how much money I just spent lol. I guarantee Jim's price will be better if not at par with cabelas. My wife just shrugged when i told her i can reload roughly 160 rounds per 1lbs container of 4895. 7000 grains per container averaged 44 grains per load. my family has created a saying on my behalf. apparently if you buy an abundance of ammo you are "kalvining it" lol
    My purchase aside i have a few questions. How many times do you reload your brass? what is a good rule of thumb when it comes to trimming brass? My Sierra Manuel says "trim to length" 2.005. Should I do this every time And should I do it before or after resizing? What's the ideal bullet depth seating?

    Also on average how much is your cost per round average? I realize that you powder and bullet choice is a huge factor but I'm basically trying to find out if you are saving money reloading posed to just buying factory ammo.
    KAL

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