Well, I am finally getting a long(er) range rifle for target shooting and hunting, a Remington 700VS in .308 Win.
I'm browsing around looking at what to use for loads, had considered something like a Sierra 168gr MatchKing over Varget, but the only way to get moly'd MKs (besides doing it myself) would be to buy in batches of 500... a bit expensive up front.
Any one have experience w/ the Hornady 168gr moly BTHP Match, or the 168gr moly A-Max in a .308 Win or similar? Do they compare favorably w/ a Sierra 168gr MatchKing for performance?
I guess my reasons for liking moly are these (based on experiences w/ .223 Rem and .220 Swift): **much** less copper fouling, therefore quicker & easier cleaning btwn shot strings, higher velocities (avg. 100 fps) than w/ non-coated bullets, and lastly, aesthetics, looks different, etc. The last one isn't a real big issue if moly didn't do the first two, but hey, it's a nice bennie [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
That said, I'm not set in stone on having to have moly. I was hoping that I could squeeze a little extra velocity out and keep the bullet supersonic out to 1000 yds or so (for target work, not hunting). But then, my .220 Swift has not *yet* been case volume limited on how much powder I can stuff in it. I've heard that this can be true w/ the .308 family of cartridges. Yes, no, maybe?
In working up loads for my 30-06 and 300Wby, I have used the 168gr Amax, Nosler J4 168 (similar to the MK), and Ballistic Tip 165gr. All are excellent bullets. I find the Amax and BT to have a much higher BC and usually take 2 to 4MOA less elevation then the J4 to get on target (out to 875yds).
I am now using the 155AMax and have had excellent results. Only shot to 250 yds so don't have any long range results. Accuracy with the AMax is superb in my rifles.
For the 308 (mine in the mail now), I would look at the 155AMax and Varget powder. I fully expect to have an accurate (MOA or better) effective range to 1000yds.
All my bullets are moly coated and I have never had a problem with them. In some rifles there is little benefit but in others, the results are impressive. The worse is that moly for me has not made anything worse. I use the Midway tumbler system.
Suggest buying a box of 168's and 175's Matchkings and find out which your rifle shoots best. No one can predict which will be better - your rifle will probably make that decision.
Moly might not make much difference for group size, will just let you shoot longer with a dirty barrel. There are a lot of serious shooters who have done a 180 about Moly, won't run it down their barrel. That's what makes the world go round, right!
The 175 has an advantage at longer ranges over the 168's but they are both real good out to 800.
Dave is having good luck with the 155's because they retain velocity out at the extreme range for a .308 - which is about 1000 yards.
Just to complicate your life, I would also try some Nosler 168 J4 Match bullets, some of our rifles show a preference for them.
My personal experience with Hornadays has been excellent, both with their HP match bullet and the A-Max. Also shoot a lot of Speer 168's which are a real sleeper in this discussion - they shoot extremely well also. If you have to have moly you can get them in boxes of 100.
Powder selection is easy - Varget or 4064 will do as good as anything out there.
The great thing about the .308 is that all the ballistic work has long been done - there ain't no secrets.
Ugh! And here I was hoping for some solid answers to avoid having to do go thru the load testing hell that I have w/ my .220 Swift 40XB!! [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
Looks like pretty much anything in the 168gr class, or the 175 gr MKs flies pretty well. I've been tinkering w/ loads on Sierra Infinity on my PC. Don't know how accurate some of their data is, though. I was wondering why the 168gr Hornady A-Max flew so well, then I noticed it was listed w/ a 0.520 BC at all velocities, whereas the Hornady manual lists it at 0.475!!
Guess I'll have some time to tinker w/ theoretical loads on Infinity and Exbal while I'm waiting on the muzzle brake to get installed.
The 155 Palma weight bullets were a surprise; I hadn't even ran the numbers on them until someone here mentioned them. Some, like the Hornady 155gr A-Max, are impressive to say the least! I'm kind of wanting to stay away from the 'boutique' bullets (as someone else termed them) as I am intending on doing some volume shooting, and anything where I might run up against limited availability is a Bad Thing. Low(er) cost would be nice as well. So Scenars and Bergers are not looking so good. Sierra, Hornady, and Speer, though, sound promising.
I hope the powder situation is a little less of a hassle? I've been watching the Long Range Target board, and it seems like Varget would be a pretty solid choice. 4064 meters like crap in my BR30, so after I use up this can in my Swift, I don't know if I'll be getting any more if I can avoid it.