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Old March 14, 2001, 11:00 PM   #1
abrahamsmith
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Join Date: October 5, 2000
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I'm using a Ruger M77 in .257 roberts for blowing up small mammals.

Right now, I'm using the Hornady 75gr HP over 43 grains of 760. (In Winchester +P brass) This does something a little over 3000fps out of my barrel. I didn't up the charge to 46 or 47 grains since accuracy is now excellent in the ultra-lite barrel, under 1" at 100 yds, and I like the light recoil.

Anyone here have other favorite light loads for this cartridge? (or, I guess, for the .25-06, which has since become much more popular)

Also,.is there really any advantage for the 75-grain Hornady V-Max bullets over their 75 grain HP's? It's a few more dollars per box.
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Old March 14, 2001, 11:15 PM   #2
Art Eatman
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From your post, I gather that "light" means lightweight bullets?

If you're already under an inch, the odds are you won't improve enough to justify more expensive bullets. I doubt if anything from Wiley Coyote on down can tell the difference, anyway--they oughta just keep on falling down, dead.

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Old March 15, 2001, 12:34 AM   #3
Johnny Guest
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Abe--

Hope you get lots of good answers, full of promising load data. I've been threatening to work up a good varmint load for my M-77 .257 for, oh, maybe the past 20 years. I just don't want to rush into anything, you know?

I've been slaying whitetails with 100 gr. Sierra Spitzers over IMR 4350 all this time, as have both sons, my daughter-in-law and assorted friends. If you added in the wild hawgs and assorted small stuff, you could probably overload a fair-size truck with the game so taken.

But I've kinda had a yen to do some serous (Serial? Cereal?) slaying of vermin with lighter bullets, so I'll look forward to the responses you fetch.

My rifle is one of Ruger's early limited production efforts--Medium heavy (but not bull) barrel, with iron sights and round top. With the old steel tube Weaver V-9 scope, it weighs a short ton. My elder son calls it my "Sendero Lite," and urges me to buy a BIG variable scope to mount on it. I personally think it's already heavy enough.

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Old March 15, 2001, 10:44 AM   #4
abrahamsmith
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Art,

Yes, light means ligthweight bullets. We already have some great deer loads. (which I'll pass on if anyone is interested)

Though this is quite accurate, I'm still kind of wondering what's out there. Since this is the first load I've tried, it seems kind of silly to just stop... it kind of defeats the whole experimental mentality of handloading!

Here's another question: I'm using the 75gr HP's, but I've seens some round-nose 67 grain bullets.. these would be faster at the muzzle but would probably slow down faster. What are your philosophies about fast/light bullets? Is there any worth for round nose bullets in varminting?
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Old March 19, 2001, 04:32 PM   #5
Long Path
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abrahamsmith--

The light bullets are going to blow around so much that they really wouldn't be much good beyond about 200 yards, anyway (poor s.d.). Out to 200, those little guys can spell poison, round nose or no. A friend had a .257 that would ONLY shoot R.N. 120 .257. Sure the B.C. stunk, but inside of 200, who cared?

I guess the question is what you really wanna do with it. I personally find 3100 fps to be plenty good for "blowing up small mammals." What, the mist gets pinker when you get MV above 3300?

L.P.
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Old March 20, 2001, 09:58 PM   #6
Reloadaholic
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I have the Ruger M77VT in 25/06. I have used the 75gr hp and am now trying the 75gr vmax. The hp's did struggle out past 200 to stay on target I am hoping the vmax with the boattail will do better out a little further. If you want to do some really long range 25 cal shooting, 300+ yard shots, go for the 100gr or larger bullets. I have had really good results with both sierra and nosler out to 500yds in this weight. At 500yds if you miss the first shot the prairie dogs don't really know what is happening and I often get a chance to adjust and take them with the second shot.

Here is some of my load data, some may not be at a blistering past as I was more concerned with accuracy since a dead dog is a dead dog no matter what the bullet speed. Though it is pretty dramatic seeing a dog stretched out in pieces and flying 10 feet into the air after getting hit with a ballistic tip.

75gr Hornady HP, IMR 4350 54.5gr, no velocity data
75gr Hornady HP, IMR 4831 58.2gr, 3350fps

I don't have any data on the 75gr Hornady Vmax yet.

100gr Nosler ballistic tip, IMR 4831 51gr, 3020fps This load rugularly produces .75 in groups and smaller.

I have had this rifle pillar bedded and have had a muzzle brake installed, so I can spot my own shots and watch the action at impact. The .75 in groups previously mentioned was before the pillar bedding, I have had some down as tight as .42 since the work. Hope some of this helps out.
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