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Old May 8, 2019, 05:20 PM   #1
Nube
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223 -- 22-250 powder

Ok, I am just about to get started on the "Reloading Adventure". As the title states I will be reloading 223 and 22-250. There is a lot of opinions as to the "best" powder for the 223 and the 22-250, but as far as I can tell about the "best" powder for both would be Varget? I realize that "best" is a relatively lose term but with costs etc. involved all I am looking for is one to start learning with, without trying to get cloverleafs just yet. I will be using Hornady 53 to 55 grain bullets in both cartridges. Thanks in advance for any and all responses they are all appreciated.
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Old May 8, 2019, 05:26 PM   #2
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What guns will you be using? That info will help.

Varget is a great powder but it doesn't meter all that well as it's an extruded powder. Trickling up to the desired charge is often used, but it does consume time.

Personally, I use IMR 4064 in my 22-250 (very similar to Varget) and 8208 XBR in my 223. There are others that are popular and will work well.
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Old May 8, 2019, 05:43 PM   #3
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Any .308 powder, including Varget, IMR4064, H4895 or even VV N140, work fine with my .22-250s.
I have an old 1:14 twist and a newer 1:12 twist and use bullets in the 52& 53 grain range for my 1:14 and up to 55 gr for my 1:12.

For my two .223 bolt rifles and my Les Baer Super Varmint, I find that CFE223, H335 or N133 work best with lighter bullets.
For bullets around 60 grains to 77 grains, the .308 powders plus CFE223 work best.
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Old May 8, 2019, 05:43 PM   #4
9MMand223only
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Varget is good, Reloader 15 is good. Norma 203B is good.

IF you want something that meters great, great velocity, good accuracy, but not as good as RE15 or Norma 203B, its Ramshot TAC, or Accurate 2460.

Not a fan of XBR8208. Just because they use a bunch of fancy letters and numbers and put it in a gold can doesn't mean jack, its overrated.

I think you will have a hard time doing better than RE15. Varget is good all around powder, no question.
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Old May 8, 2019, 05:52 PM   #5
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Odd comment, IMR4064 grains are longer than Varget and IME it meters less well. YMMV.

Hodgdon data shows very good results with CFE 223 powder - 3329 fps in the .223 and 3855 fps in the .22-250, both with 55-grain bullets. That’s about as fast as it gets for both cartridges in Hodgdon data. Its a ball powder so it should meter very well.

.
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Old May 8, 2019, 10:12 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TX Nimrod View Post
Odd comment, IMR4064 grains are longer than Varget and IME it meters less well. YMMV.

Hodgdon data shows very good results with CFE 223 powder - 3329 fps in the .223 and 3855 fps in the .22-250, both with 55-grain bullets. That’s about as fast as it gets for both cartridges in Hodgdon data. Its a ball powder so it should meter very well.

.
Thanks TX Nimrod I like the looks of that powder as it is a ball powder and Varget is not. As I understand it, a ball powder meters easily and being just starting, easy is good. As to the rifles: 22-250 is an old Ruger Mark II and the 223's are Ruger American Predator and Savage 12 FV.
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Old May 9, 2019, 02:28 AM   #7
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Nube,
I'm not sure about the Rugers, but that Savage should be a 1:9 twist at least. With that, you can shoot up towards a 73gr bullet.
I'm shooting 69gr Sierra MatchKings, and Tipped MatchKings from my wife's Savage 110FP.

When using the 55gr bullets for casual plinking, i've been using Win748, and Alliant Varmint with good results.

As for the 22-250, i might take a look at H380.
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Old May 9, 2019, 08:40 AM   #8
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I like Accurate 223 or 2200 I like them both
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Old May 9, 2019, 09:11 AM   #9
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Tac is what I use,it is a ball powder.
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Old May 9, 2019, 03:15 PM   #10
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I have heard and read that 380 is one of the best for the 250 but as I am just starting and don’t want to go hog wild yet. I don’t think the 380 will work for the 223s? TIA
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Old May 9, 2019, 04:09 PM   #11
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I reload both. Varget is really good for both, as is WW748, IMR3031, and Reloader 15. Depending on what bullets you choose for each, you may find a powder that works better in one than the other, but those will get you started.
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Old May 9, 2019, 05:18 PM   #12
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.22-250----IMR 4064 or Varget.
.223-------TAC
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Old May 9, 2019, 08:44 PM   #13
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IMR 4895 was my "go to " powder for the 22/250. It put groceries on the table through some cold winters.
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Old May 10, 2019, 12:36 AM   #14
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I don't have a 223, but shot several thousand rounds out of a 222 Rem. I used Benchmark, as it meters very nicely and is clean burning. In 22-250 Benchmark is a good choice as well. During the Bug Eyed Panic a few years ago, it got damn difficult to depend on procuring loading supplies, so I worked up loads for 3 different cartridges with Benchmark and bought a couple 8 lb. kegs. Fixed that scarcity issue, and the powder works great. I'm still using it._
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Old May 10, 2019, 03:57 AM   #15
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I am really surprised that nobody has mentioned BLC2, I just picked up a couple lbs on sale and it meters well and shoots awesome with both my 223 and 22-250..
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Old May 10, 2019, 07:32 AM   #16
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Since no one seems to want to provide actual data on powders and results, here are results from my two .22-250 rifles.
The older one, the Remington 700 got a replacement Timney trigger and a new Bell & Carlson Medalist aluminum frame stock to make it shoot this good. The listed results have been gathered over about 6 years.
After over 1500 groups, the barrel on the Remington is now about ‘shot out’ and I recently replaced it with a bargain Savage the is listed below it.

These results also show that if you shoot enough groups, you eventually get a really small group that is more the result of serendipity than skill or the capability of the particular rifle. (Turns out that the really small under 02 inch groups occur about 0.1% of the time.) Personally, I put more credence in averages with more than 20 groups included in the sample. The best groups were only recorded to capture the velocity that might have real promise with that powder-bullet combination.

Remington 700 .22-250 26-inch barrel By Average

# Grps ----Powder-Bullet---- Wgt Avg Best Load & Vel Rank
24 -----N150 Berger #22408 --52 0.252 - 0.207 3420 1
125 ----RL- 15 Sierra # 1400 -53 0.270 - 0.165 3412 2
25 -----H4895 Sierra #1410 -52 0.284 - 0.198 3453 3
46 -----H4895 Sierra # 1400 -53 0.306 - 0.187 3464 4
80 -----N140 Sierra # 1410 -52 0.316 - 0.173 3419 5
109 ----N140 Sierra # 1400 -53 0.346 - 0.184 3419 6
216 ----RL- 15 Berger #22408 52 0.356 - 0.142 3362 7
25 -----N140 Berger #22408 52 0.373 - 0.258 3600 8
190 ----RL- 15 Nosler BT ------ 40 0.430 - 0.351 4050 9
37 -----RL- 15 Berger #22406 50 0.438 - 0.327 3450 10
4 ------RL- 15 Nosler BT ----- 50 0.454 - 0.319 3950 11
24 -----RL- 15 Berger #22303 40 0.463 - 0.349 3950 12
140 ----RL- 15 Sierra #1410 52 0.479 - 0.208 3460 13
29 -----RL- 15 Berger #22410 55 0.495 - 0.496 3550 14
61 -----RL- 15 Sierra #1345 55 0.538 - 0.518 3500 15
28 -----RL- 15 Hndy #2249 52 0.598 - 0.434 3400 16
83 -----RL- 15 Sierra #1340 50 0.605 - 0.546 3550 17
42 -----H4895 Sierra #1360 55 0.610 - 0.605 3550 18
22 -----H380 Sierra #1360 55 0.613 - 0.471 3600 19
20 -----H360 Sierra #1410 52 0.631 - 0.520 3600 20
4 ------RL- 15 Nosler BT---- 35 0.640 - 0.512 4117 21
36 -----RL- 15 Sierra #1385 40 0.644 - 0.574 3850 22
3 ------RL- 15 Nosler BT---- 55 0.679 - 0.575 3500 23
10 -----H4895 Sierra #1310 45 0.725 - 0.553 3250 24
4 ------RL- 15 Sierra #1370 63 0.751 - 0.610 3300 24
33 -----RL- 15 Sierra #1310 45 0.774 - 0.638 3900 26
9 ------RL- 15 Sierra #1360 55 0.794 - 1.104 3590 27
6 ------H4895 Sierra #1385 40 0.795 - 0.761 3950 28
6 ------RL- 15 Sierra #1375 60 0.875 - 0.746 3300 29
3 ------H380 Sierra #1385 40 1.015 - 1.015 3700 30
1444 --Total Groups -------------0.442 Avg. Grp. size

The following results are for an ‘out of the box’ Savage 11 VT with the Sightron 36X scope from the Remington. I found the Savage at a ‘clear out the stock’ sale when I was picking up a Savage 12 LRP in 6.5mm Creedmoor and I couldn’t pass up the bargain. Because it wasn’t not planned for, I tried a few loads and put is aside to work with my 6.5mm Creedmoor. So, it has been sitting in the safe waiting until the spirit moves me to start working with it.

Starting with the new Savage, I tried the bullets that proved to be the most accurate with the Remington, so I was ‘cherry picking’ a bit in the choice of powders and bullets and that probably biased the overall average a bit to the low side.

With the new Savage, the velocities are tuned for the 3% steel 24-inch Savage barrel. After I had shot for years with the Remington, I learned about tuning my loads for barrel reflection times. Notice that the velocities for the best loads with the Remington for the same bullets and powders are actually slightly slower than the new Savage, but some of the lower ranked best loads for the Remington are much faster. That was probably because I was fumbling around looking for ‘nodes’ instead of tuning for reflection time. I got close with the best loads but that was probably just getting lucky. If I had tuned the Remington for barrel reflection times, the velocities would have been a bit different, especially for the faster loads that are ranked lower on the table.

Savage 11 VT .22-250 24-inch barrel 1:12 twist By Average
# Grps----Powder---Bullet ---- Wgt Avg Best Load & Vel Rank
25 -----H4895 Berger #22408 52 0.225 0.186 3491 1
22 -----N140 SMK #1400----- 53 0.261 0.202 3456 2
18 -----N140 SMK #1410----- 52 0.324 0.236 3452 3
3 ------RL-15 Berger #22408- 52 0.345 0.345 3472 4
68 Total Groups ------------------0.268 ---Avg. Grp. size

Last edited by Rimfire5; May 10, 2019 at 07:46 AM.
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Old May 21, 2019, 07:30 AM   #17
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IMR 8028 XBR & IMR 4064 are my recommendations for both cartridges.
...just my 2¢
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Old June 10, 2019, 07:11 AM   #18
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I started using Varget as a hopeful M1 Garand / 5.56 crossover powder, and I was getting mediocre results at best with 5.56 for the bullets I was using. I've switched to TAC for the 5.56 and haven't looked back. It throws exceedingly well and got outstanding results with heavier bullets. TAC also works really well with the case activated powder drop on the progressive.

The Garand eventually got 4064, still loaded by the single stage. Single stage works well, unlike 5.56 where I need to pick up the pace or I'll be there all day loading cases
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Old June 10, 2019, 07:52 AM   #19
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I use imr4064 in both w very good results. 22-250 (ruger mkii)i use sierra 1400 53gr hp and in 223 i use sierra 55gr hp in my gas gun and 69gr smk in a savage bolt. The bolts are sub 1/2 moa the gas guns are right at 1/2 moa.

Last edited by 1stmar; June 12, 2019 at 02:25 AM.
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Old June 11, 2019, 02:05 PM   #20
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no experience with 22-250 but I played with about half a dozen powders on my .223's and always come back to Varget. I have a lot of free time so I throw low and trickle up. If time was a issue and I needed to throw and seat then .223 CFE would be my choice it meters like water from a throw. Very consistent loads straight from the throw and a overall good powder inn my opinion
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Old June 11, 2019, 03:47 PM   #21
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A 2520 will lode both 22.250 and the 223 also A 2460
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Old June 11, 2019, 08:37 PM   #22
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IMR-4064 for 22-250. It is a little slow in .223, can't get enough in the case to get decent velocity. It is accurate in .223, though.
I use Ramshot TAC in all my .223 loads from 40 gr bullets to 77 gr bullets. If I was going to try one powder for both, I would consider IMR-8208XBR or Accurate 2460.
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Old June 12, 2019, 03:38 PM   #23
Nube
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Thanks for the replies!! I have decided on Varget and CFE 223 to start with. The varget is a little crunchy and the cfe 223 does meter really well.
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Old June 18, 2019, 06:29 PM   #24
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I load for both 223 and 22-250 and have been for years. My fondly powder I load both for is Varget and get clover leaf shots from both but had to work up loads to do so.
For 223 I use 55 grain bullets and the 22-250 tikka I had to drop to a 50 grain Hornady SP-SX is what they call it I believe. But it’ll stack holes all day long or ruin a deer or hogs day.
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Old July 1, 2019, 09:35 AM   #25
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How H-380 got it's name:
Hodgdon owner, Bruce E. Hodgdon, loaded his favorite 22-250 cases with 38.0 gr. of the newest batch of powder behind a 62 gr. bullet and got fantastic results. So much so that he decided to call it H-380!
Believe it or Not
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