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Ackley Improved

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Unread 05-13-2009, 12:56 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Sunnyside WA.
Posts: 49
Re: Ackley Improved

Originally Posted by BountyHunter View Post
You are asking one question that has a thousand answers and all are different.

Best thing if you are serious is to buy PO Ackleys Handbook for Shooters and Reloaders Vol 1 and 2. Should be able to get them from or

He covers most of the improved cartridges, gives what works and does not, reloading data for powders existing at that time.

Beware you will find about 10 versions of every AI cartridge and most dimensionally different. That means unless you know which reamer print your die mftr is using, off the shelf or standard factory AI dies will often not work. That means talking to the reamer mftrs (Dave Kiff at Pacific Tool and Gauge, Dave Manson at Manson Reamers, Clymer reamers, Henrickson Reamers etc) and find out which die mftr is using a specific AI reamer.

You can go to any reamer mftr ( I use Dave Kiff at PTG) and get them to make a reamer for you (about $200 with go and no go guages) and then use Neil Jones to make a custom die set for any cartridge off the reamer print for $275-$300.

Do you know of any info reguarding doing a 270 win into ackely? any improvments, or is it worth while?
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    Unread 05-13-2009, 09:06 AM
    Silver Member
    Join Date: Apr 2009
    Location: western Oregon
    Posts: 120
    Re: Ackley Improved

    Originally Posted by 270VARMINT View Post
    Do you know of any info reguarding doing a 270 win into ackely? any improvments, or is it worth while?
    IIRC Ackley quoted a 9.9% increase over the standard .270win load(s).
    I don't know if I believe that, but the Ackley improvement makes it easier to get a 150gr bullet up over 3000fps.

    Seating .270 bullets as far out as possible can make a huge difference in the recommended loads, even in non-Ackleys, as most factory .270s have really deep freebore/throats. I can't even get a 130/135 grainer out to the lands in my Rem700. They are way over the listed COALs in all my manuals with .050" to spare. It only has about 250 rounds through it, (mostly green box 130s) so I know it's not throat erosion. I can make the lands with 150gr IBs or SSTs though. I back those off to about -.020".

    Most .270s are chambered to accept 150-160gr rnd nosed slugs, which need that deeper throat.

    Hope this helps.
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    Unread 05-13-2009, 10:01 AM
    Bronze Member
    Join Date: May 2009
    Location: Sunnyside WA.
    Posts: 49
    Re: Ackley Improved

    This is true on trying to reach the lands since i have not had luck yet, but i will by some 150 sst's today and try this weekend. thanks for the info!
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    Unread 05-13-2009, 10:51 AM
    Platinum Member
    Join Date: May 2008
    Location: South of Canada and North of Wyoming
    Posts: 6,068
    Re: Ackley Improved

    The 280 AI is becoming a standard round. Nosler makes brass for it and Cooper Firearms makes Rifles in the chambering. If you want accuracy, you cant go wrong with a Cooper. And before anyone gets on my case about Cooper Rifles, the last I heard, Dan Cooper is completely gone from the company, but you might want to check that out.

    Also, the 280 AI is ballistically very close to the 7mm RM. What a 280 AI can do a 7mm RM can do and maybe slightly faster. The 7 does have belted cases.

    Good shooting,

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    Unread 10-22-2011, 09:37 AM
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    Join Date: Oct 2011
    Posts: 1
    Re: Ackley Improved

    This is not a reply, but rather a further question.

    I have a Mod '94 Winchester in .25-35 WCF that has apparently been Ackley Improved. I've fireformed cases for it, and it shoots well with .257 Hornady 117 gr jacketed bullets.

    My question or comment is that, in reading about Ackley improved cartridges, I've never seen reference to a .25-35 AI cartridge in the lists of AI cartridges. Why is that? Has anyone seen reference or heard of a .25-35 AI?
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    Unread 10-22-2011, 12:02 PM
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    Join Date: Jun 2010
    Location: greenwood, IN
    Posts: 4,027
    Re: Ackley Improved

    Originally Posted by Bulldog View Post
    hello everyone,

    I want to know more about the AI....

    Case life,
    velocity gain %,
    which if any cartridges are a complete waste of time?

    You know we all head to the range looking for an edge. Whether or not it's better accuracy or more speed or both!

    So the way I look at it is if a guy can get even 100fps more and still be accurate with supposed better case life whats not to like?? It's still gotta feed great.

    So I really would like to know from .22 clear to .338 AI who's got one? Was it worth it? Would you do it again??

    Thanks alot guys
    Parker Ackley usually improved cases to aid in case life more than anything else. Velocity gains were just something that was added into the equation. Many didn't see a lot if any real gain in velocity (30-06AI comes to light), and some saw big jumps, as in the 22-250AI. Yet something like a .338-06AI did see an inprovement that was greater than the samething in 30 caliber. Guess it was the ability to use the extra powder capacity more efficently

    The down side to the 40 degree shoulder is the dreaded doughnut forming at the shoulder/neck junction. A 30 or even a 35 degree shoulder had less of a problem. I shoot the 6/250AI, and see the doughnut after about four firings.
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