I took 80 pieces, annealed, body sized, and neck sized to .223. All chambered well. Re-tested H4895 and H4198.
28 grs 4895 was 3961 and bolt lift a little tight. Max. Backed off to 27.7 and it shows to be in the 3870-3900 range
25 grs 4198 3900 and also max. backed off to 24.7 and it is 3870ish. Might need to go to 24.5 and 3850ish.
All the bullets in this range of 3850-3900 hit within .25. I think I will be able to find a good accurate load easily with these two powders. I need to re-test Super, Varget, Benchmark, and BLC2. Super at 29 grs will run 3780 and in the past 32 was max. So I would like to re-test and see how it does.
Yes. For example my other 204 and buddies 204 both can handle 24.7 grains of H4198. My new one was only able to handle 23.5. Now that I have my brass issue fixed it can handle the 24.7 as well. Now that all things are equal again, the 26" barreled 204 is showing to be 100 to 115 fps faster with the same powder charge. That makes sense to me. I held off installing the other 26" barrel until I understood what my problem was. As usual my problem was me. Ha ha.
The additional velocity does not seem to give me a significant distance advantage on paper. However, I notice when shooting beyond 650 yards the bullets become unpredicatable. At 750 I have a tough time getting a solid, repeatable group, at 650 or less I can .5 MOA. So I might see 100 yards more but likely 50-75 yards and I will take that. I love shooting these little 204s LR. My wind calls need work.
I switched to the 204 to work on my wind calls. When I shoot my 6.5-284 I see the $$ going down range and barrel life with it. Also, my wife enjoys shooting the 204 so it is a win win for us. I figure as I get better with wind calls on the 204 I will certainly be more accurate with my 6.5.
In this vid I have some balloons on the right side of the area I am shooting. The wind is coming up the draw to the right of the balloons and it varied 2-5 mph. At 550ish this changes POI enough that the 7" balloons were missed occasionally. I think I shot 18 rounds and 12 hits.
This is a load I worked up with 39 Gr Sierra's. 24.7 H4198. After I shot this confirmation round I shot a group. It was around .5 MOA. Then all the sudden they went hard left. From my position I was in a wind hide. I stood up and felt about a 3.5 mph wind R to L. I corrected and put a couple more in the orange. That is nice load for the short barrel 204 but when I tried to shoot 750 it was not all that accurate. I need to shoot paper and see if the bullets are tumbling at that distance.