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7mm vs 280ai

 
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  #1  
Old 04-12-2012, 09:19 AM
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7mm vs 280ai

I dont know which to build so I need some good and bad about the two. I would like to have the 7mm ballistics so just how close to the 7mm can I get without over loading the 280ai. I have the brass for both so thats no big deal
Thanks Ted
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:26 AM
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Re: 7mm vs 280ai

A few questions first. Do you plan to shoot a varied assortment of bullets or are you more inclined to shoot heavy (160 or heavier) or lighter bullets? If you are more inclined to shoot 140s and 120s the 280 AI is a no brainer, less powder, recoil, noise, barrel wear, etc....less of everything except velocity.

If you plan to shoot the heavy for caliber 168 and 180g bullets a properly throated 7Mag will beat the 280 AI by a small margin in the velocity dept. Is it worth the slight edge in velocity it has over the 280 AI? IMO no. With this you have more powder, recoil, barrel wear...blah..blah...blah.

I have had multiple 7mags and multiple 280 AI's. I no longer have any 7mags and still have multiple 280 AI's. I am a fan and IMO is one of the best cartridges available for many reasons. Easyto get brass, easy on brass, performance with a wide range of bullet weights, recoil, and one of the most important ACCURACY.

The 280 AI's simply shoot. They are typically not finnicky when reloading for as compared to the 7mag that can be tempermental. I have never had a 280 AI that wouldnt shoot. The 280 AI is just one of those rounds that is inherently accurate!

The 280 AI's I have are throated differently. One is throated for 140g bullets and the other is .188 freebore for 160's and higher, speciffically for the 180 berger. I find I never shoot the lighter bullets in the 280 any longer. With the long throated rifle 26" barrel I get 3000 fps out of the 168 Bergers and 2900 fps out of the 180s. With these loads brass life is good 4-5 loadings before they start showing signs of loosening up. Trajectory wise they are more or less equals, the 180 bucks the wind slightly better but the 180s shoot better past 600 yards in my rifle so that is what I shoot.

One thing of note about the 280 AI that I have seen repeated in every one I have owned is that accuracy is typically found at higher preassures, to a point of course, use common sense. They like to be pushed.

Hope this helps you out. Both cartridges are great but I am a fan of the 280 AI. Good luck im sure either one will serve your purpose great.
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:55 AM
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Re: 7mm vs 280ai

Shumba
Thanks for the great info. I am going to be using a 26in. finish#4 Brux barrel with a 1-9 twist and am looking at 150 to 160gr bullets. I like the thought of less recoil (getting older). I will be using mostly for deer hunting and sometimes i may get a 600 yrd shot. Do you have any pet loads for either weight of the two bullets and the most consistant powder you have used
Thanks Again Ted
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Old 04-12-2012, 04:14 PM
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Re: 7mm vs 280ai

I will have to look on actual loads but I can tell you what powders are good.

RL-22 is a great powder in the 280 AI it is extremely accurate in all of the rifles I have had, that said if temp sensativity is an issue of course this is not the best powder, for accuracy though this is probably the best place to start. with the 140's @62g for the 160's @59g is probably close to the top or best loads so start below here and work up to these charges. 4831 has always been a good powder in the 280 AI but I have never settled on a load with 4831, there is much more velocity to be had than typically yielded by 4831 I have found.

For the 160's try 7828, H1000, Retumbo these are all great powders......7828 is really a great one to start with and you may never need to try anything else. I like STD cut 7828 for this case as it gives a better load density than SSC, but this could also depend on your throat length, SSC may be needed if the 160s are down past the neck shoulder junction too far. You may not be able to use Retumbo depending on your throat length also.
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