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Old June 21, 2012, 05:49 PM   #1
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Why so high an ES

I recently was finally able to take my new toy to the range. I received, as a souvenir, a Cooper MDL22, 6.5/284, 26" 1-8", called a Montana Varminter. I have no experience with Varmint style rifles, but always wanted one, and my wife bought me one as a Valentine gift.

I have relocated to the MS Gulfcoast and there is virtually no components available here, the only thing I found that I needed were primers and Win WLrs were all that I could find. I had to order everything, here's the list.

100 pieces Lapua brass
Redding dies
REdding trim die
RCBS case holder
Sierra 142gr Matchkings
Berger 140 gr VLD's
Vortex Viper PST, 6x24,FFP,ect

I had already H4831sc, RL 22, RL 25, Varget, and H331.

I have been reloading since 1976 for 30-30, 7mag, 7.7 Jap. 300WM, and 9mm.
I now reload for 300WBY,340WBY,223, 44mag, and now 6.5/284. I'm no newbie to reloading, but certainly not an authority.

I called Cooper to get their data used for the factory target. It was 49gr RL 22, 142gr SMK, Norma brass, and CCI 200 primer, and to start with a COAL 0f 3.00" and work out, that some shooters have had better luck at 3.1" and 3.2". I had already ordered brass at that time, and was able to only find WLR primers locally, but now the store has ordered Fed 210 and CCI 200 primers.

Here is what I loaded, 10 rounds 49grRL 22, 3.00"
10 rounds 49gr RL22, 3.1"
10 rounds 50gr RL22, 3.1"

My first string had an ES of 123fps, second string, ES 52fps, third string 48fps. Now I have chrono's almost every round that I've shot in the last 5 years, and have never had an ES of more than 20fps, what gives? I had a couple of good groups, under .3", those were in string three.

I want to add that I trimmed, measured, and trickled every load, calipered every loaded round. I was as meticulous as I possibly could be, but didn't weigh every piece of brass or every bullet.

I am new at varmint rifles, so I felt kind of awkward finding a natural cheekweld, getting rests set for this rifle, ect. I'm used to sporter type rifles, with Monte Carlo stocks, so I'm having to learn a new technique to shoot this thing.

I would really appreciate any advise and comments on what caused such extreme ES. I was thinking primers or powder, or both. I am considering upgrading to a higher end triple beam scale. Will appreciate any tips from anyone with experience with this chambering and type of rifle. Thanks fellers.

Last edited by handlerer2; June 21, 2012 at 06:00 PM.
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Old June 21, 2012, 07:07 PM   #2
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Poor case fill is a great way to get high ES's.

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Old June 21, 2012, 07:11 PM   #3
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Also just read you didn't weight sort the brass which will also make getting consistent velocity difficult.

Lapua brass should be good to go, but it doesn't hurt to check.

If I were loading for it, I'd pick up some H1000. Seems ideal.

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Last edited by mrawesome22; June 21, 2012 at 07:30 PM.
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Old June 21, 2012, 08:00 PM   #4
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Go to the Hodgdon site and look at their high(er) end loads for H4831.

QL tells me that should be a winner from all aspects: fill ratio, burn completion, pressure and velocity.
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Old June 22, 2012, 04:21 AM   #5
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Here something from 6br site

Loading for this cartridge can be relatively simple--or as complicated as you can make it. There is a wealth of knowledge about the round and some great loads have been worked out. Using Hodgdon H4350 or H4831sc with bearing-surface-sorted Sierra 142s will get you in the running. For the 139gr Scenars, our friend Fatboy sums it up this way: "For Lapua brass, [try] 47-49gr H4350 (Fed 210m), or 49-53gr H4831 (Rem 9.5), or 47-50gr N160 (Fed 210m). If one of these loads doesn't work for you, you are doing something wrong, or you need to switch to 142 SMKs. Each of these loads are proven winners by AMU shooters as well as Regional Prone and F-Class winners. Start low and work up, don't concern yourself with a specific MV. Go with accuracy, and clean often."

When long-range competitors first started shooting the 6.5-284, many pushed the cartridge to max velocities. However, it soon became clear that peak velocities did not produce the best match results. The general trend has been to back off loads to the 2950-3000 fps range with 142 SMKs. This seems to produce better accuracy in most guns, along with reduced throat wear. In selecting a velocity, most of our "experts" say to pick a load that delivers best accuracy with low ES and SD. What velocity that represents will depend on your gun and barrel. John Brewer runs his loads about 2950 fps, while Bill Shehane normally loads to about 3050 fps in an Ackleyized 6.5-284 case.
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