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Old June 21, 2011, 07:59 AM   #1
p5200
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.223 load data needed Thanks!

I've been using 55gr. V-Max over 25grns. of Varget with pretty good accuracy in my Savage 10fp .223 1:9" twist. I recently got some Hornady 68gr. hpbt Match bullets and was wondering if anyone might know what the min-max charges of Varget are for this particular bullet? Thanks!
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Old June 21, 2011, 08:04 AM   #2
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Old June 21, 2011, 11:46 AM   #3
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Hornady manual has that bullet seated to 2.250" COL. In a Winchester case with a Winchester WSR primer they have Varget start at 22.7 grains and max at 24.9 grains. I wound up with 24.4 as a best accuracy load, but I was using Federal 205M primers. That is a compressed load unless you use a long drop tube.
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Old June 21, 2011, 12:19 PM   #4
Marco Califo
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Quote:
That is a compressed load unless you use a long drop tube.


Compressed load refers to utilizing all the space inside the cartridge, compressed by the bullet seating. How and why would any drop tube influence this at all?
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Old June 21, 2011, 01:12 PM   #5
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That's what drop tubes are for. They pack the powder tighter in advance of seating the bullet, so you can get more powder in. The exact mechanism would be interesting to study in detail, but I believe that by letting the powder pick up some speed on its way into the case, grans bounce and get more random opportunities to wedge into a close places that trap them from further bouncing.

The taller the tube, the tighter it packs. Black powder users have used drop tubes for this since the 19th century. There is often no other convenient way to pack 70 grains into a .45-70 under the long bullets.

In any event, some loads that have low enough bulk density would be compressed if left at that bulk density by shallow pouring, but with a long enough drop tube will pack tightly enough to stay below the bullet. I should probably make up and example and post a photo. I'll edit this post later to do show that.

A shaker table will do some added packing. Indeed, simply moving cartridges around tends to pack powder some to. I read mention by someone, I think maybe in Precision Shooting, who had a load that did fine at the range when he loaded at home, but when he put the same load together at the range it created overpressure signs and a sticky bolt. The vibration of transport packed the powder enough to slow its effective burn rate a bit by leaving less room between the grains for the hot gas and flame to propagate through.

Edit:

You can see how, for a flat base 125 grain or 150 grain bullet, this could take the load from compressed to packed but not compressed.



Note that this works best with stick powder. Hard sphericals show almost no change with drop tubes. I think that's one reason they meter so consistently whether you have powder baffles in your powder measure or not. But any powder that can pack will exhibit some of this effect with the drop tubes.
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Last edited by Unclenick; June 21, 2011 at 02:42 PM.
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Old June 21, 2011, 01:24 PM   #6
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My most accurate load for those bullets and Varget is 24.3 gr. Varget seems to get more accurate with a compressed charge. I don't use a drop tube (sounds like a good idea though) and it really gets compressed seating the bullet with this load.
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Old June 21, 2011, 02:36 PM   #7
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The tubes do help, as my edited in photo shows, above. The more space between grains, the more help. There is a trick though, and that is to be sure the drop tube is plumb to give the grains the greatest velocity without bumping the sides on the way down. I find it best to put a long drop tube, like the 3' tube on a chemists glass apparatus stand, so I can set the rod plumb and not have to fiddle with it. If your rod is an extension of the powder measure, leveling feet or shims under the base can help get the tube vertical.
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Old June 21, 2011, 06:37 PM   #8
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Old June 21, 2011, 07:42 PM   #9
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If 25.o gr of Varget with a 69gr OTM does not shoot bug holes in a 1/9 twist or fastr bbl it is bad gun or a **** poor shooter!
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