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Reloading Berger Bullets


looking for max loads

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Unread 02-22-2009, 03:11 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 4
looking for max loads

I'm new to reloading and I've been in this forum looking for the answer to this qustion any help i'll appreciate.I'm loading 270 win.bdl rem.i want to load 130gr.nosler accubond with imr4831 and siearre 130 gr spitzer but i cant find anything that tells me what my starting load should be or max load.I can find 135 gr.sie.and 130 gr.berger and horndy.Another guestion is can you seat bullet in to deep I no you can press all the way through the neck.I'm seating bullets at 3.179" by cal.book and manuals says 3.340" can you go less than that but not longer.Any help thank you.
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Unread 02-22-2009, 06:19 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: MN
Posts: 1,219
Re: looking for max loads

welcome to the wonderful confusing relm of reloading!

What loading book do you have? Before taking any advice from the internet you should have read and reread at least one "how to" loading book by Hornady, speer, nosler...one of the manufacturers of components. If you can't recite most of the loading processes by memory, than I'd suggest going back and rereading the fist hundred or so pages again. Those books have lots of great information in them and they are the best advice you can get. If you don't have one than go to the upper right of the screen on your PC and click that little red x, go the the nearest sporting goods store and fork over the $30 bucks or so to get one and enjoy

If you did read the manual several times than here is my opinion;)

I beleive it would be hard to seat a bullet to deep. If the bullet's tapered spitzer is recessed into the case mouth your getting too deep imo, you might find some dificulty in chambering since the case mouth would be exposed. As a general rule of thumb... for hunting cartidges you should seat the bullet at least as deep into the case mouth as the bullet is wide. That means a 277 cal bullet should be seated at least .277 inches into the case mouth. AND if you seat the bullet so long that it is touching the rifling than you should be cautious when working up loads. You could see a slight pressure increase when you seat right up to the lands.

I like to use the Cartridge Loads - Hodgdon Reloading Data Center - data.hodgdon.com as a quick resource for loading. It gives you a good starting point and has a huge selection. Works great as long as you like using IMR and Hodgdon powders like I do.

When ever you work up a load. YOu should always start at the low charge and slowly work your way up to the charge you like and you really shouldn't go above (I never give anyone advice to go above the recomended max). According to the hodgdon site They are using IMR4831, 130 grain Barns TXT's getting a chamber pressure of 46,600 with the starting load. THe Max THEIR test rifle went to was a chamber pressure of 61,700. That is plenty high since the spec for the 270 was set a 54,000, so you may not be able to go quite that high. Read a good reloading manual and that will give you some ideas of what to look for in your case to see if pressure is getting a little to high. I don't like to give the powder weights so you should visit the site and see first hand what they recomend

You are always best off to use published load data that uses the exact components that you are using. This isn't always possible or feasable. The most critical thing is to use the same weight bullet and the same powder as listed while experimenting. Alot of stuff can affect pressure a little including but not limited to the primer make, case brand, specific chamber that you are using (not every chamber of the same brand of the same cartidge is the same exact size!). The boat tailed bullets will usually show signs of pressure just before standard spitzers will, some bullets have slightly less barring surface on the barrel than others,... the list goes on. Anyway my point is that you should be safe starting with the minimum load, working up in 0.5grain incraments until you reach your desired powder charge.

Most bullet manufacturer relaoding manuals will list the same data for a spitzer, round nose, and a boat tail. But I have noticed that a few of my rifles develope pressure signs prior to reaching the max load listed on Hodgdon's site. I blew a primer out of my 22-250 last year because I didn't start at the bottom of the scale when working up a new load for a new bullet weight.

bottom line is better safe than sorry... it's good to ask q's.

good luck, Mark.
I used to re-load but now I "hand-load".
-- Well, at least I try --

Last edited by britz; 02-22-2009 at 06:42 AM.
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Unread 02-23-2009, 10:23 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 89
Re: looking for max loads

If you seat the bullet too deep, you increase the distance from the bullet ogive to the rifling lands & your accuracy often suffers because of this. Most guys seat their bullets closer to the lands, not further away. Also, seating a bullet deeper in a case raises your chamber pressures, possibly to dangerous levels if done to excess. Seating depth is really a relationship between the case length, chamber dimensions, including the chamber throat & the bullet. There's a lot going on here!
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Unread 02-24-2009, 10:18 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mountians of SW NC, near Asheville
Posts: 1,595
Re: looking for max loads

Okay, you have two questions.

First, max loads for bullets you don't have data for. Don't sweat the the small stuff. Any difference between what you have and what the books specify for bullets of the same weight (including the specific case, powder lot, primer, etc the book makers used) will be accomidated by THE SINGLE CARDINAL RULE of reloading; "start low (in charge weight) and only work up (in small increments, maybe .2 or .3 gr. depending on case size) until you reach the book maximum OR until you see evidence of excess pressure. IF/WHEN you do see pressure signs, back off 1 or 2 gr, depending on case size, and accept that as your own max charge for that bullet in YOUR rifle, no matter what the book says. If we don't do that, we could load for a precious few bullets and could even KABOOM a few guns with "modest book loads!"

Excess pressure signs you can't miss are (1) the bolt is "sticky" to open, (2) you see a shiney spot on the case head where the ejector cut has sheared off a bit of the brass, and/or (3) you see a smoky ring around the primer pockets. ANY ONE of these is a warning to back off, NOW! And forget studying "flattened" primers as any real help, there are just too many other things that flatten primers even if the pressure is normal. If you do get an over-pressure flattened primer one of the other three signs will confirm it, no matter what the primer looks like.

Now, the OAL length. Understand that the book OAL is no more of a "law" than the powder charges they list. It's ONLY the length they used to develop their data, so any changes you make in OAL will be accomidated with the same process and signs used to watch for excess pressure working with charges.

For rifles (not handguns), seating in the lands has a risk of increasing pressure, but not when backing off and seating deeper. Well, at least within reason, we don't want our bullets to fall inside the case you know! Therefore, I think it's easiest - safest really - to start load development with the bullets close to the lands - maybe off .010" - and, when the best charge is found go further from the lands until you find the best seating depth for accuracy.

It is NOT true that factory sporting rifles tend shoot their best into, or even really close to, the lands. That's a myth coming from BR shooters. But, they ain't us. BR shooters use rifles vastly different from ours so they use different cases, chambers, bullets and loading methods. What works "best" for them isn't consistant with us and rarely works best for us. In fact, their methods are as different from ours as tennis is from badmiton; looks somewhat alike but not much!

MOST factory sporters seem to shoot best with bullets from .020" to as much as .100" off the lands. Meaning I'm NOT saying there aren't any exceptions, both ways, but most of us will find better accuracy well off the lands. Only way for us to find our own best seating spot is to experiment, same process as with powder, while looking for groups instead of pressure/velocity this time. Since backing off the lands IS safer than moving closer, it's best to start close and back off after you've established your max charge. Seems tweaking the charge a little after finding best seating depth would be good, and it may help sometimes, but it's never done a thing for me.

While doing these tests, as you shoot and reload to shoot again, keep a close watch on your case length. If any case exceeds the chamber length and a bullets is gripped in the chamber rather than being free to move, chamber pressure will instantly go outta sight! It's easy for a newbie to forget to watch for this, don't you do that!

Oh, yeah. One more "question"; How do you determine what's "best" for powder charge or OAL? You will find, or should find, that the actual charge and OAL that works "best" isn't a tiny, critical spot, it's usually within a power range of maybe .4 grains and an OAL range of as much as .015". If your load is more critical than that it will also be quirky, tending to do crazy things with tiny changes in temp, or powder, primer and bullet lots, etc. That shouldn't happen. A good load will be surprisingly tolerant of small differences without notice to the shooter. Meaning, weigh your charges until you find the load, or OAL, then load in the middle of the range that works but after it's found don't sweat slight differences. Do this and many otherwise "unexplainable fliers", will disappear.

Last edited by boomtube; 02-24-2009 at 10:55 AM.
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Unread 02-25-2009, 12:56 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 4
Re: looking for max loads

thank you all for your input on helping me get started.For now i,m just going to play safe and go with factory round OAL.Just mainly be on safe side of things.Until I get more comfortable then I,ll play with the length I'll also will start little above the starting load that Lymann book provides.Thanks again and I know I,ll have more questions in future.
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