300 WSM, RL17 and the TTSX = WOW
Just ran a tests on the RL17, the Barnes 168 TTSX (tipped) and all I can say is wow.
Started with Winchester brass, F215M, Barnes 168 TTSX (BC= .477) and at 67.2 grains of RL17. Went up to 69.0 grains in .3 increments.
Gun was a Rem WSM with 24" # 3 SS Lilja 11 twist in a Bruce Baer thumbhole in butternut with Kahles 3-9 with TDS. This was a project gun 3 yrs ago to see if it is still a pain to build off a stock rem and the answer is yes, broke two rivetted extractors in two years and finally the smith put a sako in for cost of parts. I had a PTG WSM bolt I was going to fit, so it will be sold soon.
This is strictly a walking around and tree stand rifle that weighs right at 7.5 lbs with scope, sling and loaded. With this load and the TDS, should put me to around 800 yards or so with no clicking. I was at 703yards at 6x with the 168 TSX at 3175 fps and .40 BC.
MV started at 3216 and topped at 3351 FPS. ES and SD was as low as 3 and 1 at 69.0 grains over the Oehler 35(4 foot spacing of the screens) for 5 shot groups. Max was 45 and 23 and that was with the 67.2 grains. All of the loads between 68 and 69 were at 10 and below on ES and SD.
Groups ran max 3/4 to one hole. Which is not bad considering I was shooting off a soft bag in the front and elbow pad for the rear. When more time allows I am going to shoot off a bench and really bear down for accuracy. Just did not have time, as I was final testing zero for 4 guns before a hunting trip next week.
The new RL17 load data shows 68.0 with a 215 for a 165 bullet and with the Barnes you are supposed to be able to use about 1-2 grains more and this supports that theory.
Even at 69.0 there were not any pressure signs and the MV, ES and SD sure confirm that in MY gun this may not be the absolute tops, but sure more than what is needed.
Not at all bad for a load that will put any deer or elk down, with high MV, good BC, great accuracy and off the shelf affordable bullet. Now if RL17 shows a little stability and temperature tolerance it might be a great deal. Time will tell on this on.