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Old February 4, 2013, 09:02 AM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: February 3, 2013
Posts: 6
New to forum, .223 powder/primer/ OAL questions....

Hi all.

Like the title says I'm new to the forum and a fairly new reloader...

I started a few years back with my grandfather who taught me the basics for pistol reloading and then we mooved onto rifle cartridges, however he passed away before we could get too in depth into rifle rounds, and that's where I am today.

I am starting off with .223 and going to follow with .308. Both of these loads are for Ar's.

.223 load will be using once fired brass with benchmark primers, vargat, and 55 gr. boat tails. I will be using a Dillon 550, but will start on a single stage till I find what works best in the rifle.

My questions:

First- Is there a big difference between benchmark primers vs normal primers? Will this affect my load? It was all that was available when I first purchased about a month ago, and looking back on it I sure wish I would have bought more. Just twice the cost. I can't find any between ND, SD, CO, and WY. I'm going to have my brother look around in MT.

Second - Bullet seating depth. I'm having a hard time to properly choose my seating depth to provide a sufficient OAL. Any pointers here how much it too much depth? Do I want to go past the knurling on the bullet, or is this a common crimp zone? I'm aiming for 2.190 for my OAL with a 1.745 case length.

Third- regarding trimming. I am trimming to 1.745 after sizing. I feel this is a good length from the research I have done. Any suggestions or comments regarding this?

Fourth - Due to the extremely low availability of components and the fact I'm just starting off with rifle rounds I had to take what I could get for powder. I only have a lb of H-Vargat and 2lbs of H-Benchmark till I can find some more... I have gone through quite a few manuals, but would like to hear a few of your personal loads done with either of these powder with 55 gr BT.

Lastly - I also have 500 rds of tracer ammo I picked up way back in the day. I will probably only shoot it during the winter months, but I was wondering if the benchmark or vargat will burn hot enough to ignite the bullet. I heard poking a pin hole on the back side of the bullet will assist in ignition, but I just wanted to see what you all used for powder in any tracer loads you have done in the past. I figured it would be a powder that wouldn't be saught after too much but I have not been able to find much 846T, 844 OR 846.

Feel free to rip me apart in my thought process. Any valuable info is much appreciated. I want to get it right the first time...

Also, Does anybody have comments or experience using HERCO for 230 gr HP .45? Just thought I'd ask in regards to powder experience and accuracy.

Last edited by Nossliw; February 4, 2013 at 12:41 PM.
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