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Old September 25, 2006, 06:11 PM   #1
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Load data for 173gr .308 bullets

I have a box of 300 or so ex-military 173gr FMJ/BT .308 diameter bullets that I would like to load for my 1903A3 Springfield, but I can't find any load data for that particular wieght of bullet.
Is it safe to use data for a 175gr bullet, or does anyone have much experience with these bullets?
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Old September 25, 2006, 06:26 PM   #2
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The data for 175 gr bullets should be safe.
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Old September 25, 2006, 06:45 PM   #3
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Old September 25, 2006, 08:26 PM   #4
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The military bullet spec was actually 174.5 grains, +0, -3 grains, and most I've measured weighed close to 174 grains. The Sierra 175 grain MatchKing's I've measured have also weighed about 174 grains, so what Scorch said is even more exactly correct than you might suspect. The last batch of M72 match 30-06 cartridges the Army ordered used a load of 46.5 grains of IMR 4895. That is a very safe load pressure-wise. About 10,000 PSI below SAMMI maximum for the 30-06 and should be safe in older guns in good condition. You can use it with the Sierra bullets, too, if you want to make an accuracy comparison.

Remington cases had about the same volume as Lake City military cases the last time I looked, so they would be a good match for this load. Winchester cases have less brass and more powder capacity and will require about a grain more powder. The official velocity for this load is 2640 fps, but I find in most real 24" rifles performance is more like 2570-2600 fps if the muzzle is tipped up before firing to allow the powder to fall back over the primer. It is about 80 fps less if you tip the muzzle forward before coming up and firing.

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