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Introduction and Load Density Question

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Old 06-24-2009, 04:50 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 74
Introduction and Load Density Question

First, I would like to say hello. Iíve been a lurker for a while spending most of my on-line time on other forums but decided to sign up and post on this site as there is so much valuable information shared here. So, first and foremost thanks for sharing all the great information.

I would also like to pose what hopefully will be a quick question. Iím new to reloading so bare with me if Iím using terminology incorrectly. Iím working up a load for my favorite rifle Ė 300 WSM. Itís a very accurate rifle with the right ammo. Iíve found the rifleís ďSweet SpotĒ at 2,975 Ft/Second Ė doesnít seem to matter what bullet at that speed Iím averaging sub-MOA groups. As I go above or below that speed the groups spread out quite a bit. So now that I have the stage set hereís my issue - I want to shoot the TTSX 168gr Bullet. Iíve chosen two powders H4350 and H4831SC. To get the velocity into the right zone the Load density on the H4350 is low in the lower 80% range - Iím still getting the accuracy but each round sounds like a baby rattle. The H4831SC the load density is very high and I hear a ďcrunchĒ when I seat the bullet to the desired depth. So are these issues to be concerned with or should I just run with it. As Powder is so hard to come by Iíd really prefer not to try to find a powder between these two. Any recommendations? Is either issue really an issue?
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:08 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mountians of SW NC, near Asheville
Posts: 1,596
Re: Introduction and Load Density Question

When something works, shoot it.
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:23 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: MN
Posts: 1,219
Re: Introduction and Load Density Question

hello and welcome.

IMHO a compressed load has a major disadvantage... if you have low neck tension you will have a hard time getting a consistent seating depth. Generally speaking the better powders for a given bullet cartridge combination will usually be pretty full. However, as boomtube said if it works it works.

ALso, it is not a good idea to use a powder that fills the case only partly full due to the possibility of having a poorly ignited load. This can actually lead to excessive pressure believe it or not! I've heard of cartridges like the 243 having this problem with certain powders.

Most of the loads I shoot out of my factory rifles will have some wiggle room (more than I would have expected, but not so much to be dangerous).

Also, as far as the sweet spot goes, it has more to do with the specific pressures and vibrations of you rifle than the velocity. All of these change with the smallest alteration. Even if you have a load that preforms extremely well with a (example) 180 grain ballistic tip, switching to an accubond will change some pressures due to the slightly different jacket. and switching to a Sierra or a Berger of the same weight will definately change things up. But, if your particular loads tested better at 2975, than so be it as long as your not overloading and pushing the limits ;)
I used to re-load but now I "hand-load".
-- Well, at least I try --
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Old 06-25-2009, 01:06 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 430
Re: Introduction and Load Density Question

You can check your compressed rounds' length after they've been in a magazine or sat awhile. If you want better compaction, you can tap on the case before seating the bullet. Another method is to dispense the powder through a long drop tube. However, if there is no downside to your present method, you're essentially seeking the solution to a non-problem.
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Old 06-25-2009, 11:57 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 74
Re: Introduction and Load Density Question

Thanks for the comments. It sounds like in a gray area between what's working and potential problems. I will keep and eye on them to see if either end of my issue really becomes an issue.
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