7mm 168gr Berger Thompson Center Encore

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by PowellSixO, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. PowellSixO

    PowellSixO Well-Known Member

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    Mar 19, 2013
    I've been playing around with the 168gr Bergers in my 7mm for some time now and have been very happy with them. A lot of my friends have been amazed with how they shoot at the range. The last time I was out I made 10-10 hits on a small coyote silhouette at 600 yards from the prone position. So one of my friends wanted me to make up a load for him. So I took his Thompson Center Encore 7mm with a 28" barrel and muzzle break and worked up a bunch of loads. I never did find the max load for his rifle which really surprised me. I loaded all the way up to 71 grains of H1000 with absolutely no pressure signs!!! We decided to stick with 69.4 grains since it was the most accurate. I was VERY surprised to see the velocities with this load! I'm shooting the same amount of powder with my rifle and getting right at 3000 fps. With this his rifle we were getting 3264 fps!!!!! With only like 12 fps difference between 20 rounds. This thing is screaming!!! What I ended up with was almost identical to my load for my rifle.
    168 grain berger
    .010" off the lands (obviously our OAL's are a little different)
    69.4 grains H1000
    Winchester Brass (only major difference between our loads)
    WLRM primers
    I'm guessing that the longer barrel on his rifle is where the extra velocity is coming from. Am I correct in thinking this? Are other people getting velocities like this? From what I've seen and read, this is pretty damn fast.
     
  2. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Well-Known Member

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    Dec 22, 2010
    Is his barrel 28 inches long with a muzzle brake in addition to that or is it 28 inches long including the brake. A muzzle brake will take at least an inch off effective barrel length.

    The most velocity increase you're going to get per inch of barrel is about 50 fps and it's more usual to get something in the 20 to 30 fps range. There are some barrels that are faster than others and a 200 fps velocity difference between a "fast barrel" and a "slow barrel" is not unheard of.
     

  3. PowellSixO

    PowellSixO Well-Known Member

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    Mar 19, 2013
    It's a 28 inch barrel and then the brake. I forget who makes the barrel. My barrel is 24". So I guess if he's getting 50 fps extra per inch, that makes sense. Considering he has a custom barrel, and mine is factory, that probably makes a difference too. Either way, that rifle is spitting those 168 gr Bergers pretty fast. He's going to let his son use it on his Bull Elk hunt later this fall. It should do the job. His daughter shot a 355" bull this September with a .270 at 350 yards. She's quite the shot. She put two shots (second one just for good measure) through the elk at that distance, and both entry wounds were within 1" of each other.
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