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A few reloading questions for a beginner.

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Old 10-23-2011, 08:40 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Booneville, Ar
Posts: 290
A few reloading questions for a beginner.

Hey fellas, Brand new to reloading and have a few short questions yal should have no problem with. Specifically I'll be reloading for 25-06 with 24" barrel using the Berger 115gr vld and the Seirra 120 gr gameking using H4831 and H1000, I will be trying to find my best grouping with heighest veocity for max terminal range and later using this info to work up a profile for a BDC turret.

First question is will I see more velocity using H4831 or H1000? From Hodgens the max load for H4831 is 54.3gr While the max load for H1000 is 56gr using the berger bullet.

Next question is. Will the max load for a cartridge be the same regardless of the brand and weight of bullet used? I.E. H4831 having a max load od 54.3 for the bergers, does that also mean thats the max load for that powder for that cartridge or could it be diffrent when using the 120gr SGK?

Have any of yal seen damage from using the corporate recommendation for max load of Hodgens powder? Or is that something that just normaly happens if exceding recommendation?

While checking out on the web how folks achieved their best groups, invariably it was most allways with highest velocity with bullets seated very,very close to the lands. Is this common or do a large percentage find the best groups at lower velocities or with bullets backed quite a ways of the lands? Thank's, Brad
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:12 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Fredericksburg VA
Posts: 4,123
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.

The answer to question one is maybe. Every gun is a beast unto its own. Only way to tell is try it.

The answer to question number two is a resounding NO!

Bullets have different sizes even in the caliber, different bearing surfaces etc. For example Hornady bullets send to be on the fat side. Bullets with the ribs can be driven faster with less pressure versus a jacketed bullets.

Once again start over and test.

Same thing with primers. Actual pressure testing over an Oehler 43 with different primers have shown you can have as much as 5000 psi difference in same load by simply changing primers. So much for all the "exact" QL pressure tests and loads.

IF you do search here on loads say for the 300 RUM for example, you will find that there is about a 4.0 grain difference in what is max in one gun and what is max in the other. It all depends on the individual chamber and throat plus COAL.

Never start at book max, start 10% below and work your way up until you get pressure signs with that particular load and then back off and tweak.

Do not assume that the max accuracy is in or near the lands, sometimes it is as far as .100 off. Plus if you are running them in a magazine, start at max magazine COAL and work backwards.

IF you want for other than mag gun, start in the lands and come back. Pressure goes down as you back off. If you start in the middle, and need to go towards the lands, pressure will increase.

Do not assume again that max velocity is near the lands. It might be and might not be.

Taking internet loads and "ASSuming" they will automatically work in your gun can be dangerous and non habit forming.

However, they do tend to indicate what powders, what load ranges you should look at. Just start low and work up for your gun.

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Old 10-23-2011, 01:43 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Thunder Basin, WY
Posts: 1,788
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.


My 25-06 with a 24" barrel shoots the same velocities advertised for factory loads with same said factory loads, handloads give the same velocity basically as the reloading manuals say I should get. However, in an older 25-06, I was getting 200-300'/sec more velocity than stated with X powder charge. I've also seen this in a couple of other rifles. What I mean is that the "book max" should be giving 3000'/sec, but instead it's giving 3200'/sec. in those rifles (which means, to me anyway, that my pressures have to be higher than theirs). In contrast, some other rifles struggle to get the advertised velocities, no matter how much of said powder gets stuffed into the case.

Each rifle is it's own personality and will give different results than another.....that's about the only thing we can be sure of
Aim small = Miss small

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Old 10-23-2011, 05:08 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mountians of SW NC, near Asheville
Posts: 1,596
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.

"..have a few short questions yal should have no problem with."

Oh yes, we will. Your questions are short and pointed; the answers are all "Maybe." Meaning, no one can honestly and accurately tell you what YOUR rifle or loads will perform best with.
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Old 10-23-2011, 05:45 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 297
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.

You might want to look at Retumbo powder with those heavy bullets. H4831 is my go-to powder for lighter weight bullets but for all the other powders I've tried over the years Retumbo gives me the best results with heavy bullets.

Others gave sage advice for load development. There is no magic bullet (pun intended) that gives the same results even though they are the same weight and as stated earlier, bearing surface is the most influencial factor.
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:33 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Booneville, Ar
Posts: 290
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.

As you're working up your load do you ever pass max load(slowly maybe .5gr at a time) looking for higher velocities until you see presure signs then back off a half grain or do you just stick with recommended max and let it go at that? Thank's, Brad
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:40 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Booneville, Ar
Posts: 290
Re: A few reloading questions for a beginner.

SBruce, I'm sure hoping mine is one of the fast ones as the max loads are still below 3000fps and I'm wanting to do better that that. Hornady states their getting 3110 from there 117gr SST ammo and HSM advertises 3165 velocities pushing 115gr Berger VLD's. I was hoping to do as least as well as manufactured rounds. Hornady is using a special blend of powders but, I don't know what HSM is using. Brad
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