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Varget and 175gr SMK's

 
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  #1  
Old 12-21-2009, 03:34 PM
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Varget and 175gr SMK's

Why does Sierras reloading manual say the max load of varget is 41 gr and in hodgdons manual i believe it says 46gr is the max laod! Why is there such a big difference? Where should i start out?
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Old 12-21-2009, 04:08 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

Start out low because each rifle and each brand of brass and each brand of primer will affect what is actually max load. Even the Lot# of Varget will cause problems with max.

There are also a lot of differences between the pressures caused by different brands of bullets of the same weight. As a general rule the Sierra bullets have a tougher jacket than some other bullets and may cause pressure problems earlier than softer jacketed bullets.

There are reasons the internet is full of pictures of blown up guns.
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Old 12-21-2009, 04:33 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

Start real low, like 35-36grain then load one bullet in each 0.5grain increment till you notice a sticky bolt, flattened primer, on an ejector mark (shouldnt see this unless you got wayyy too much pressure). Once you notice any of these signs back off atleast one full grain, that's your max for that batch of powder, with that primer that bullet at that dept, using that batch of cases. If you change any of those variables, back off a bit and test again. May seem like a hassle but beats having your gun ruined, your face reorganized, or having loaded an entire batch of ammo that you can't shoot and have to pull.

And Buffalobob is right, the sierra mks have a thicker jacket than your average bullet and that can cause more pressure. There is a reason reloading manuals tell you never to start at or near the max, this is it.

Stay safe,
Oliver
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Old 12-21-2009, 04:48 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

Quote:
having loaded an entire batch of ammo that you can't shoot and have to pull.
I am going to shoot the hot Varget loads in January F-class when the weather is cold. I tested it last week and under 40 degrees it is not max like it was in September. That will save me from having to pull bullets.
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Old 12-21-2009, 05:10 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

Thanks for the info so far, but i think i was looking more for the reason why the max loads are so much different between the sierra and hodgdon manuals, for the exact same powder and bullet? You would think they would be fairly close? Does sierra rate theres lower to be on the safe side, i have noticed alot if not most people shooting thise combo are over the max recomended load according to sierra! Either way i will start out low and work my way up checking for pressure signs.

Thanks again,
Adam
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Old 12-21-2009, 07:12 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

I load my 178gr a-maxs in my .308 over 44.7grains of varget. I know people who load up to 45grains with them. Not sure about the Sierra mks sincei don't shoot them.

To answer your question about the different max loads, that's because for most 175grain bullets, you can probably safely load up to 46grains. But for the Sierra 41grains may be the max, I do believe this is a little conservative however.

Buffalobob,
have they decided on a date for the Jan f-class match? If it's not on the first weekend that means I can try my new f-class custom
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Old 12-21-2009, 09:02 PM
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Re: Varget and 175gr SMK's

Quote:
Originally Posted by adam330 View Post
Thanks for the info so far, but i think i was looking more for the reason why the max loads are so much different between the sierra and hodgdon manuals, for the exact same powder and bullet? You would think they would be fairly close? Does sierra rate theres lower to be on the safe side, i have noticed alot if not most people shooting thise combo are over the max recomended load according to sierra! Either way i will start out low and work my way up checking for pressure signs.

Thanks again,
Adam
Loads in manuals are based on liability. Some companies are willing to expose themselves to more liability than others. Clearly Sierra is a company that does not like a lot of liability.

Oliver - f-class match should be the sunday of the first full weekend in January (the 3rd). That's the last weekend of deer season, so I won't be there.
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