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Old February 6, 2013, 09:55 PM   #1
wrightme43
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Conflicting load data .308 win. Hornady and Lee manuals

Has anyones else noticed this? I used the Hornady manual for my .308 using IMR 4064 and 180 grain spire point. I tested loads in 1% increments increasing. I recently got my Lee manual (edition II) Its min load for IMR 4064 is greater than max from the Hornady manual. IMR 4064 is called out as best powder in the 180 grain jacketed range. I am inclined to trust the Lee manual since it gives actual measured velocity and actual measured pressures. I have all of the numbers written in my notes, but they are downstairs and I know what works for me will be different than others.

I began to compare like powders between the two books and noticed the change is pretty consistent across the range of powders shown. Hornady states velocity in 100 fps increments, Lee is actual measured down to the 1 fps increments. It seems strange.
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Old February 6, 2013, 09:56 PM   #2
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Lee didn't write any of their data, its all copied from either the powder manufacturers or the bullet manufacturers. Check IMR's data.
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Old February 6, 2013, 10:20 PM   #3
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Thanks from IMR site

180 GR. SPR SP IMR IMR 4064 .308" 2.800" 40.7g min 2445fps 44,100 PSI 45.2C max 2683fps 58,200 PSI

It also conflicts with the Hornady manual.
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Old February 6, 2013, 10:33 PM   #4
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From Lee
180 grain
IMR 4064 start 40.7g @ 2445 fps max 45.2 @ 2683 fps

From Hornady
IMR 4064 start 34.0 @ 2000 fps max 41.3 @ 2400 fps.
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Old February 7, 2013, 08:31 AM   #5
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When you've been reloading for a while, you'll start noticing that more often. As with all things, experience lets you sort the data, and a knowledge of how a particular load in your gun works.

Lee's Manual is a good reference for lots of things, but the Lee Manual is data that's taken from lots of different sources and arranged to give highest velocity. It doesn't take into account the different bullets, listing bullets only by type and weight. The stark truth is that different bullets ride down a bore differently. For example, I recently was toying with the .25-06 and loaded two loads. Same powder, same case, same primer, different bullet manufacturer. I used the Hornady SST and the Sierra Gameking, and the velocity difference, while not staggering, was certainly measurable.

Another stark truth is that some manuals are more conservative than others. It's all part-and-parcel of the reloading hobby.

I tend to trust, in order of research, the Hodgdon website, then the Alliant website, then the Nosler manual, then the Sierra Manual, depending on what I'm doing and what load I'm working with. Then, I pick a mid-range load and do my own workup to see what works best in my rifle.
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Old February 7, 2013, 08:47 AM   #6
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Ditto what Paw Paw said, exactly! I usually use the bullet manufactures recipe for the minimum load and work up carefully from there, until I find the one I like. I don't use many Max loads for any of my rifles because usually the load it like is less than max for me.
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Old February 7, 2013, 08:48 AM   #7
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wrightme, everyone working up loads does not use the same lot of powder, cases, bullets, primers and the same barrel, case neck tension and firing pin impact parameters. And different people shoulder firing the same rifle and ammo can get 100 fps difference in muzzle velocity 'cause they hold the rifle against them at different force levels and angles and their upper body mass ain't all the same to resist recoil.

It's all grade school physics if one stops to think about all the stuff involved.
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Old February 7, 2013, 08:54 AM   #8
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Thank you all.
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Old February 7, 2013, 09:08 AM   #9
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I often find one manuals min. to be another manuals max, or close to that. I trust Nosler manual for making sure I am safe and starting with a good minimun load.

Most manuals tell you how they tested. For example it might say tested in a Remington 700, 24 inch barrel, or TC contender or a test barrel. What none of them say is: "tested in your rifle"
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Old February 7, 2013, 10:07 AM   #10
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I've found that the Hornady manual is a lot lower in most cases than most other manuals I have and most manufacturer load data online.
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Old February 7, 2013, 12:52 PM   #11
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I've also noticed the same thing in Lyman's 49th in all of the calibers I load for, that Lyman's start load is lower than all of my older manuals, and Hodgdon's web site.
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Old February 8, 2013, 05:07 PM   #12
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The bullet makers data is always my first choice when working up a load ! The Powder makers manual is my second choice . Then come 47 years of experience and a healthy dose of common sense ! Always cross reference before you load a new combination !
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Old February 9, 2013, 09:16 PM   #13
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Has anyone on here ever seen pressure signs at published maximum loads? In my lifetime, I have loaded for no less than 80 different rifles, and "maximum" was no where close to showing pressure signs in any of them. Dig up some 25 year old manuals, and if you can find a common load, the old manuals are 10+% hotter. I am sure published max is past max in some rifles, but I have never seen it.

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Old February 9, 2013, 10:28 PM   #14
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Has anyone on here ever seen pressure signs at published maximum loads (or starting loads, for that matter) that's universal across anything we can see on all fired cases and has the same parameters for a given pressure level?

What maximum published loads use the same pressure measuring stuff and technique?

Is everybody using the same system and terms, i.e. copper units of pressure or pounds of pressure per square inch and not geting the two mixed up?

I smell a rubber ruler. . . .er. . . excuse me, a rubber pressure measuring thing.
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Old February 9, 2013, 10:38 PM   #15
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Before pressure test barrels became common, men worked up loads by looking for signs of pressure, micing brass, etc. These published loads that are hot as hell by todays standards did not blow rifles up. It seems to me that today's data is liability based data.
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Old February 9, 2013, 10:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
From Lee
180 grain
IMR 4064 start 40.7g @ 2445 fps max 45.2 @ 2683 fps

From Hornady
IMR 4064 start 34.0 @ 2000 fps max 41.3 @ 2400 fps.
Notice the hornadys min load starts at 2000fps, while the lee min load starts at 2445fps.... the load data doesn't conflict, hornadys is just much more conservative

Hornadys manual is written for hornadys bullets, and apparently they don't feel confident letting you shoot their bullets faster than 2400fps. If you are using hornady bullets, I would go by that, otherwise, follow pawpaw's advice.

I found using the hornady book loading for my .308, (using hornady 165gr sst bullets), I started getting pressure signs as soon as I went above their (hornadys) maximum of 44gr of varget (HARD recoil and very hard to open bolt.) My final load was 43.8gr, max load according to hornady is 44gr, and I got pressure signs at 44.3gr, despite the fact that hodgdon says I can go up to 46gr.....

so yea, if your bullet MFG has loads, I would follow those before I would follow the powder MFG loads....

Again, this is why no matter WHO'S data you use, start low and work up... I cringe to think what might have happened if I had just the hodgdon data and decided to start at max.... (no, I didn't even think about it)
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Old February 9, 2013, 11:06 PM   #17
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I worked up a load that according to Hodgdon was max at 92% density. After working up way past max I finally hit my maximum load at ultrasonic toothbrush density. No pressure signs. Very accurate. The more powder I could cram in, the more accurate it became.
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Old February 10, 2013, 03:19 AM   #18
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Quote:
I worked up a load that according to Hodgdon was max at 92% density. After working up way past max I finally hit my maximum load at ultrasonic toothbrush density. No pressure signs. Very accurate. The more powder I could cram in, the more accurate it became.
Yea, my load above at 43.8gr is "crunchy", I don't know how hodgdon even fit 46gr in for their load... I tried it and if I didn't crimp the round quick, it literally wanted to push back out.... must be different brass.
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Old February 10, 2013, 07:34 AM   #19
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Brass has a lot to do with it. I usually use Norma, and it has the smallest capacity of the major commercial companies. In theory, I should be hitting max load sooner than anyone else, but its not happening that way.
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Old February 10, 2013, 08:13 AM   #20
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If folks would contact SAAMI then ask them what safe pressures are based on, they may learn that they're not liability based. For rifles, it's typically based on what the weakest part of the system is; the brass case. Cartridge brass starts to extrude at about 65,000 cup, 80,000 psi. Peak pressure needs to be below that level.

There are also issues with some rifles whose design and metalurgy ain't as strong as others. British double rifles made for the .470 NE are good up to about 35,000 cup. And the old trapdoor Springfield .45-70's rated at 28,000 cup.

If one's not measuring peak pressure with the right stuff, they're guessing.
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Old February 10, 2013, 08:48 AM   #21
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So in 1961 when Lyman listed max load for a 7rem mag 6gr. higher than anyone lists it today they should have had issues with brass and actions failing? I have been loading over that for 15-20 yes. I should be seeing some issues with brass or actions in the five different 7 mags I have owned in that time period? I meant 6, I almost forgot about my WBY V1. My bolts lift very light. My soft Federal primers look fine. I have no abnormal extractor marks. By belts look and mic. fine. the webb above the belt looks fine and is indeed so according the the mic. 6+ over published max with a medium powder in 6 different rifles with no pressure signs. SAAMI must have the 7mag wrong or I have physics defying rifles.

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Old February 10, 2013, 09:41 AM   #22
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Reynolds
Quote:
By belts look and mic. fine. the webb above the belt looks fine and is indeed so according the the mic. 6+ over published max with a medium powder in 6 different rifles with no pressure signs. SAAMI must have the 7mag wrong or I have physics defying rifles.
Your barrel's bore and groove (maybe the chamber, too) diameters are way oversize. And the bullets may be smaller than SAAMI specs. If both are true, then you've got a double whammy causing the results. Did you compare them to SAAMI specs?
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Old February 10, 2013, 11:35 AM   #23
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Bart, We are talking 6 different rifles. 2 700 Remingtons, 2 Win 77, 1 Mcgowen custom, 1 Wby Vanguard. I doubt they are all out of spec. I shoot the 140 gr load with both Sierra and Nosler bullets. I doubt they have both been out of spec for the last 15 years across multiple lot numbers.
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Old February 10, 2013, 02:56 PM   #24
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Quote:
So in 1961 when Lyman listed max load for a 7rem mag 6gr. higher than anyone lists it today they should have had issues with brass and actions failing? I have been loading over that for 15-20 yes. I should be seeing some issues with brass or actions in the five different 7 mags I have owned in that time period? I meant 6, I almost forgot about my WBY V1. My bolts lift very light. My soft Federal primers look fine. I have no abnormal extractor marks. By belts look and mic. fine. the webb above the belt looks fine and is indeed so according the the mic. 6+ over published max with a medium powder in 6 different rifles with no pressure signs. SAAMI must have the 7mag wrong or I have physics defying rifles.
YOUR rifles are fine, but who is to say they didnt get lots of reports from people who DID have some sort of problem? I can garantee if they get even enough reports over the space of several years from people who claim to have had problems with their published load, they are going to do a whole lot of testing, or just lower the max out of pure CYA.....

I have read plenty of reports of people getting pressure signs even with close to minimum loadings.

If everyones gun could handle max loads, they woudlnt be max loads....
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Old February 10, 2013, 03:51 PM   #25
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Reynolds, most factory barrels have larger groove diameters than SAAMI specs. Measure your barrel's groove diameters and your bullet diameters to the nearest .0001". SAAMI specs for 7mm Rem Mag groove diameter is .2837" +/- 0" and for bullet diameters, .2845" -.0030". (that's quite a range for bullet diameters)

I'm just curious.
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