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Old December 15, 2004, 11:44 AM   #1
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Question for those with semi-auto "sporting rifles", like BAR, 7400, etc.

I'm curious about what loads will cycle these guns reliably. Can you tell me what loads have definitely worked, and if you know, what ones have not been totally reliable in your gun. Be specific in your answer, like "80 and 90 grain loads in .243 work in my safari-grade BAR, but not 105 grain loads". Also list the brand and type if commercial, and the powder charge & other specifics if a handload, and the reason you believe for the failure, whether a COL problem, or simply powder charge problem. I'm primarily interested in what loads will cycle well in the more common calibers, like .243 win, .270 win, .308 win, 30-'06, and .338 winmag, and I'm particularly interested to know whether the loads with the longest, heaviest bullets will cycle perfectly reliably in each respective caliber, like 105s for 243, 150+ in .270, 180s or 190s in .308, 200s or 220s in .30-'06, and 250+ in .338, or any knowledge or experience related to this subject. Thanks.
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Old December 15, 2004, 12:11 PM   #2
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My 7400 in 270 would not feed (stock magazine) any round with a bulket design that had any flat or open component to the tip. This meant that Barnes X-Bullets and any soft point that was not a well-formed point did not feed. Nosler Ballistic Tips and the like were the only ones that worked.

Having got past that hurdle, I did not notice any issues with cycling of any factory rounds at any weight.
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Old December 15, 2004, 01:02 PM   #3
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In that regard I'd like to see some responses about the Benelli auto.
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Old December 18, 2004, 06:01 PM   #4
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What works in your rifle might not cycle in another brand, or even the same brand, but another guy's rifle.
My Remington 742 shoots any 150, or 180 grain round I have put in it, but a hunting buddy of mine, can't use 180s in his, because they are just not accurate in his rifle.
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Old December 18, 2004, 10:17 PM   #5
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I've run 147-180gr ammo through my .30-06 BAR.

No problem, but it's got an M14-style gas system under the forearm.

My particular rifle, however, has a tight chamber, and the bolt has often failed to close on some factory ammo. Before I go afield, I hand-cycle the ammo through the action to be sure I don't have any surprises. When I reload for the rifle, I use small-base resizing dies. It could just be particular to a 1969-vintage Belgian rifle, I haven't heard of others having the same problem.
"Bother", said Pooh, as he chambered another round...

Neural Misfires
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Old December 18, 2004, 10:26 PM   #6
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G98 does that mean that you got a custom ordered a full length resizing die that makes cartidges for that rifle smaller near the head? I know you know your way around a gun, could you have reamed the chamber to achieve the same results?, or does the rifle got a characteristic like accuracy, etc. that you did not want to ruin. Do the manuals, of these rifles, list cartidges, or bullets, pressures needed to operate successfully, or is it sessions at the range. TIA
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Old December 19, 2004, 12:29 PM   #7
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I wouldn't have reamed the chamber larger in the 1969-vintage rifle below.

It's too nice, and I can make it work for me. Nor would I be assured that if I sent the rifle back to Browning they wouldn't do something I didn't ask for, like scratch the French walnut, garf the Belgian blueing, make the trigger heavier to comply with 2004 liability concerns, etc.

Small-base resizing dies are readily available from RCBS, and take care of the extra case diameter often found just above the extractor groove. You need the resizing die and a thinner shell holder, it's really a piece of cake.

Browning's manual for the rifle really didn't make mention of what bullet weights to use. I attribute it to the fact that the rifle uses the White system of gas operation, where it uses what it needs to cycle the action, then bleeds off the excess.

"Bother", said Pooh, as he chambered another round...

Neural Misfires
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Old December 19, 2004, 07:36 PM   #8
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I did some experiments with my 308 HK SL-7 a long time ago. I started with below starting loads, and work my way to max loads, it seemed that it started cycling rounds at just above stated starting loads. Most self loaders need a almost max loads to work. I have not seen max loads print good groups in my 308, though. Also, the powder needs to be not too fast or slow. That will mess up cycling too. If you are reloading, start at the starting load, and work your way up, to max, 5 rounds at a time, you will know what load your gun will like, by your group size.
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Old December 20, 2004, 01:42 AM   #9
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Thanks guys.

G98, I saw it was an older rifle, and figured there was a reason, I didn't know they had the dies already made up, I could swear I saw in a catalog, that they make custom dies for what seemed very reasonable. It looks like it is in out of the box condition.
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Old December 31, 2004, 06:07 PM   #10
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remington 742

i had a remington 742 (7400) in .243 Win. i shot over 100 rounds through it moslty 100 grain (Winchester powerpoint, Federal loaded speer hot-cor and federal premium nosler partitions) i also shot some 75 grain v-max bullets all factory loaded and never had a single jam or miss feed the trick to having a reliable autoloader is to keep it clean and you will never have a problem
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Old January 2, 2005, 09:57 AM   #11
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Remington 7400

I also have a Remington 7400. However, I have had some issues with feeding. I tried different types of ammo to assess which might provide the best accuracy. That is when I started having feed failures. I read on one of the forums that the Remington ammo is specifically manufactured to cycle the 7400 bolt and that the 7400 is not as forgiving to other types of ammo. I also noted that the feeding/chambering process tends to dent lead-tipped ammo thus affecting aero-dynamics and subsequent accuracy of the bullet. All-in-all, I am still working on getting my Remington to perform up to it's name-sake's reputation.
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