In the .223 rem. Varget produces more velocity with bullets that weigh 65 grains or less, Reloder 15 produces more velocity with less pressure with bullets heavier than 65 grains. I would sure like to see some Oehler 43 data on VV 540 with 80 grain bullets.
H-Bar, Well, I loaded some 55gr. V-Maxs up with 25.5grs. Varget, a load that some fellow used to get oneholers when he did a review on the bullet on Midway's website, I'll see if I can top that .194" group I got with H335 with the same bullet, was going to wait for a reply from Hornady as to what is the Max load for the 52 A-Max with H335, but decided that yours and deergrunts load should be just under Max, and should be safe in my rifle since the max load for the 50V-Max with H335 is 25.7, bearing surface looks identical, I'm using 7.5 primers, which will have to work for now. [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img] Jay.
Alot of the natives up here use the 223 exclusively for all hunting, bears for them are usually at the other end of the color spectrum too! [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img] How's one argue with their success... Ammo is cheap and it's better than a harpoon when there's some distance between them and the bear.
I really don't like chasin after a bear that didn't go down, sometimes just the roar from one wounded in the brush as you go in on him can make a grown man too weak to walk if he lets it get to him... I've seen people refuse to go in after an encounter like that, and one guy just ran!
A potential conscequence I'm not willing to face in some situations if I don't have to I guess... Loosin a Wolf isn't one I'd relish either. Head shots usually screw up the hide in a bad place for sewing up, so usually they don't get it in the head. At around 300 yards, the biggest target on a Wolf still remains his chest, and often they don't stop and wait for your shot.
Don't have any 223's for testing over the Oehler at the moment, my brother sold his DPMS.
From all the talk I've heard on the 500 series VV powders, it seems they're over rated on the burn rate and possible velocity increase, kind of put em on the back burner for now. The Oehler 43 will definitely tell the tale though.
I was pondering using vv540 but when everyone talks of cycling the action too hard or ripping of case rims, I have to pass. I usually shoot the 68gr bullets so I use BLC2 which works great. With gas guns you have to worry about powders that have a burn curve that puts out too much port pressure hence the case and gun damage from cycling too hard. I have shot the lighter bullets too and use them here in NY where I woodchuck hunt and have a lot of houses around. The VMAX bullets absolutely disintegrate after they hit anything. I think you will find that the AMAX stays together just a little more than the VMAX. They both work great on deer as long as you shoot head shots or behind the shoulder. A friend of mine and I have used the 223 for deer damage permits and have put down quite a few deer. In fact I can't think of any that went anywhere after being shot. I did have a friend that I had a bet with about shooting a black bear with my 223 but he never got the bears to show up. The only bear I got to see was next year during bow season and it was about 100yds away. The bear and bow thing inspires adrenaline for sure. I bet the spear thing would be even better though. Only kidding the bow is as primitive as I get!!!
H-Bar....You should try an adjustable gas block, it allows you to maximize velocity and tune a load to optimal, but still control your bolt velocity. In the custom AR's and Stoners, I use longer gas tubes with an adjustable gas block, they work awsome!
H-Bar & Deergrunt, I shot your load today, 24.8grs H335, 52 A-Max, got a nice 4 shot group of .079" 5th shot got away again, 1/2" off, telling myself it was the wind, it was bit low and left. Tried the Benchmark with HO 53 and 52AMax while coping with a 5-10mpw, got a 3 shot group of .262" with the 53, 2 groups with AMAX avg. an inch, should've waited till the wind died down. I'll give Benchmark another chance to redeem itself on a calmer day or evening. Question: Does a group that strings at a 45 degree angle to the right indicate anything? Barrel was fairly warm but not scorching hot.(Rem. varmint) Have no idea which holes came first or last, just noticed group when checking target. I'm thinking it might have been fouling, reason being, I shot the small group right after I ran 2 patches of Shooters Choice and a few passes with a brush to get some not all of the fouling out, last few groups were not that small with no wind. [img]images/icons/confused.gif[/img] Jay.
S1 I have contemplated the adjustable gas block but all I do with the colt is hunt and shoot with friends. If I was to compete it might be worth pushing it balls to the wall.
I just stick to the cream puff loads that are accurate and as long as I range it right I get good results. With the 1:9 twist it seems to shoot the 68gr hornadys better than the 75gr bullets. I know it is splitting hairs but even Deergrunt will tell ya. I get a little obsessed with certain things.
Jay I am glad that you like that load. My colt will make one slightly stretched bullet hole with 5 shots and no wind. I would wait for ideal conditions to pass any meaningful evaluation. I have a sick quantity of rounds through that gun and it just keeps on lovin it!!!