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Posted: 8/14/2003 8:48:59 AM EDT
I don't know if this is the right place for this post, but I don't see a reloader specific forum.

My standard .223 load is a 55gr Nos. BT over some 2230 (don't remember exactly how much hehehe...not a home to look it up). This load shoots MOA in 5 differnet rifles, so it's not too shabby.

However, I'm really looking to get down in the consistent sub moa ball park. I've had good luck with Reloader 7 as well as the 2230, and absolutely hated the 748 I bought 8 # of...but I'm ready to try some extruded powders to see if they'll work better.

The guns I'm shooting it in will either be 16" 1:9 twist or a 19 1/4" 1:9. I'm about to order some 69gr Sierra Matchkings...and in addition to trying some H335 since it's so versatile, I'm gonna try either the IMR 4895 or 4198.

What's your preference between those 2 for the rifles I listed? Is one clearly better than the other with the 69gr bullet?

IIRC, the first hand loading I ever did was 4198 with the 69gr MKs, and I'm pretty sure this was the load that did 1/2moa in the Armalite...it's kinda what sold me on reloading. (Of course, I ended up gravitating to the ball powders for ease of measure, so I haven't used extruded powders for a couple of years). Well, tell me whatcha think! Thanks for the help...
Link Posted: 8/14/2003 11:05:39 AM EDT
Paging Mousegun87.... Paging Mousegun87....
Link Posted: 8/14/2003 11:10:46 AM EDT
I'm not a reloader and don't know diddly about the subject. However, you do mention 1:9 barrels and moving to 69grn bullets and that's a good move. Try 69grn and if there's anything available up to 75grns but 69 grn should be your sweet spot for accuracy.
Link Posted: 8/15/2003 10:18:21 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/17/2003 8:53:55 AM EDT
I have a Bushy Varminter and I've been having great success with Noslers J-4 69gr bullets with A2230.I can shoot one hole groups at 100yds when I do my part.I also use Sierras 69gr MKs and they are pretty much same in accuracy as Noslers.
Link Posted: 8/17/2003 9:19:34 AM EDT
I've had better results personally with 68 gr. Hornady BTHP, Sierra 69's were a close second. I used W748 with the Hornadys and had good results.

MM419
Link Posted: 8/17/2003 3:15:02 PM EDT
I decided to go ahead and try some IMR 4895, and some H335. I ordered some 69gr Match kings, and a friggin' powder trickler, to do this the old fashioned way lol. I've still got some Varget left, and a little reloader 7 as well. I'll make up about 20 or 25 of each powder, and see what gives. I've only got 100 bullets coming...too poor for more, as I had to get some .308 as well.

Now of course in their manual, Sierra recommends 25.5gr of 748 for the 69gr. Match King...a load I was lucky to break 1 1/2" with.
Link Posted: 8/17/2003 7:16:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/18/2003 11:52:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/18/2003 11:53:39 AM EDT by Fenian]
Troy, excellent suggestion...I'm just gonna have to resign myself to the fact that it may take more than 100 bullets for me to find the "sweet spot" unless I get lucky...and stick with one powder at a time. What's a good starting point? Middle of the data sheet?
Link Posted: 8/18/2003 1:31:29 PM EDT
Instead of using 4-5 5 shot groups, try a single 7 shot group at each step.

I work up a load 0.5 grains at a time starting about 5 or 6 steps below the listed max.

This way will get you VERY close to your ideal load without breaking the bank on bullets.

Use your most accurate load, and tinker from that point.
Link Posted: 8/18/2003 1:34:09 PM EDT
Oh, BTW - IMR 4198 is probably too fast for your bullets. It works great with 35-50 grainers though!

Link Posted: 8/18/2003 3:48:32 PM EDT
I've been loading 55gr BT's over 25.1grs 4895, which is the accuracy load for the 55gr bullets right out of Sierras manual. I can do this all day long out of my Armalite M15A4(T) Carbine at 100 yards off a bipod. (well I might not be able to, but the rifle seems to. )



The flyer was me and it was the last round out of 5, as always, $#@$^% &^%$$#. Never look in the spotting scope till the group is done!
Link Posted: 8/19/2003 3:47:41 AM EDT
I have a Colt 6700 that I varmit hunt with. I use 55 Blitz Kings and 4198 with very good results. I am running 21 gr with Fed brass and match primers.

For my 700 VS (1 in 12 twist) I run 50 gr blitz kings and 4198 and this set up really works for me. 100 yard groups hover at .25, I can not complain.
Link Posted: 8/19/2003 5:22:01 AM EDT
Reloder 15 and Varget seems to be the most common powder used by Highpower shooter to drive bullets up to 80 grain Sierra Match King.

Varget, however, is also known for its velocity consistency regardless of temperature and pressure due to a change in altitude. So if you will be shooting in the Colorado mountains this week, and the beach of California the next week, Varget is the best powder for the game.

How much to use? Well, try to be conservative. Use the starting amount prescribed in the manual and work your way up slowly. I like to increment by 0.5 gr. Find the best group, then work my way down and up by a finer increment, say 0.2 gr. Kind of doing a hierarchical clustering algorithm.

I use a Chronograph to develop my load. From what I read, a muzzle velocity of 2700 fps will guarantee the bullet to remain at supersonic speed at 600 yards downrange. Why 600 yards? Because it is the common long distance range shot in highpower matches. They do have 1000 yards matches, but you'll have to go to 90+ grain bullet and 6.6 twist barrel AR for that. Too weird for my taste.

The bottom line is, if you are shooting for accuracy, then you dont need to push the muzzle velocity too much. Get the mildest load that get you the best group with muzzle velocity above 2700 fps. In my case, I found that 24.1 gr of RL 15 is sufficient to get me what I need. I think the max load recommended is 24.5 gr for 77 gr and 80 gr SMK. But I know shooters who load it up to 25 gr or so. I dont recommend this, and it is not necessary. We are punching papers, not some hard target that needs a lot of penetration.

HTH
Link Posted: 8/19/2003 6:17:50 AM EDT
Lots of variables in shooting 1/2" groups out of an AR-15.

One of my favorite loads for 100Yds is 53g MK over 26gr IMR4198.

To get consistant groups I replaced the trigger (Jewell), added a float tube for A2 handguards and installed 1/4 MOA sights with adjustable apertures.
Link Posted: 8/19/2003 7:54:50 PM EDT
Thanks for all the help...I'll keep you posted on how it goes. I should get the stuff in by Friday, hopefully, so I can get some round loaded by Sat. If not, I still have the stuff I did last weekend.
Link Posted: 8/26/2003 5:36:28 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/26/2003 5:41:51 AM EDT by Fenian]
Okay, went out this past Sunday, and shot up the ammo I'd loaded.

I started with the minimum load as stated by the Sierra 50th Anniversary reloading manual, using the 69gr Sierra Match Kings, IMR 4895, and Hodgdon's H335.

I had 3 different loads for the 4895...I increased by .4gr each load. Same for the H335, but I had enough bullets for 2 different loads.

The 4895 did the best with 23.4gr, the groups tightened up really nicely to between 1/2 and 3/4"...but 3 of the 4 groups had a flyer...I was shooting between 2 guys with FALs, and each time one of them fired, it would knock my POA to hell...so I had to kinda squeeze my shots off in between the two of them...not the most ideal conditions.

The H335 did okay, both loads around an inch, but never got any better. So far, it looks like the 4895 is the way to go.

Next batch of bullets, I'll start from the 23.4gr and see what happens from there. Also, the trigger in this rifle was atrocious...actually painful to shoot after about 40 rounds, I could feel that one tendon in my carpal tunnel being strained. When I got home, I tweeked it...it's much easier to pull now, and I'm sure that will help tighten the groups up as well.
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