Savage 338 lapua bullet setback

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by countryrebel, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. countryrebel

    countryrebel Well-Known Member

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    I am having a bullet setback issue with my savage 111LRH in 338LM. I am using RCBS FL dies with lapua brass and berger 300gr bullet using 89.0gr retumbo. COL is 3.750 (just fits the magazine). The problem is with both fired and unfired lapua brass. I have tried using lots of roll crimp using the RCBS dies and no crimp at all. Tried pushing them on a table and the bullet wont budge but the rounds in the magazine are experiencing a lot of bullet setback. I cannot move the bullets deeper into the cases before firing but they can be moved in and out after being in the magazine for a couple of rounds. I know this sounds confusing but I am just trying to explain the best I can. Is there another die that works better or am I missing something. Not new to reloading but this is the first time I have had this problem. Thanks for any help.
     
  2. handloader1

    handloader1 Active Member

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    There was some stuff I purchased a while back to water proof handloaded rounds. It came in a glass bottle that looked like nail polish this might help I don't know. I think Roy was one of the names on the bottle. I would call RCBS; the sizing button may be undersized. :cool: :cool: Good luck.
     

  3. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    Have you measured the outside neck diameter, it should be .365" using Lapua brass. Also, what s the distance to the lands. Mine, and my buddies rifles are 3.74-3.75". You might try seating your bullets a little deeper. Most of the Savage 338 LRH and FCP shooters I know including mine are seating the 300gr. Bergers 3.70-3.720" COL. Seating the bullets further from the lands doesn't seem to effect the accuracy with the Berger 300's, many times improving it. Maybe the bullets are too tight in the magazine making contact. I had this problem with my 375 H&H. You could also be deforming the bullet tips. just some thoughts.
     
  4. tinman13kup

    tinman13kup Well-Known Member

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    I just finished loading some 338 with the berger 300gr bullets using the RCBS dies. What I found is varying COL's from round to round. I don't know if it's a slight variance in the profile of the bullet or not, but at the angle the taper on the bullet is, only a thousandth difference in diameter where the die contacts the bullet will magnify out in COL . You might want to check each round for that.
     
  5. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    It's not a good idea to use a crimp with a non cannelure bullet. It can deform your bullet and perhaps effect it's performance and bc.
     
  6. countryrebel

    countryrebel Well-Known Member

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    OK, measured the outside neck diameter on the lapua brass and it was .365". Set the bullets to 3.70 COL. Loaded 4 rounds in the mag and fired the top 2. Round 3 was setback to 3.615" and round 4 was setback to 3.640". Bullet tips are flattened from recoil in the magazine and there are no signs of overpressure on the fired rounds. This was using virgin brass.The berger 300gr bullets measure .338. Do you guys think the 89.0gr of retumbo is maybe too hot? I have some 285gr Hornadys that I will try and see if the problem persists. I am shooting off a bipod but I dont think that should matter. Any more ideas?
     
  7. 429421Cowboy

    429421Cowboy Well-Known Member

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    I am interested to see what suggestions come out of this thread, i am fighting set-back in a Savage .338 WM (don't think it has to do with the gun, just coincidence) as well as bullet tip deformation, it actually leaves a notch from where the front of the mag is overlapped and spot-welded. I am helping a friend setup this rifle to be a good all around gun to 500 yards, certainly not 1000+ performance needed, but past 300, you have to have things in good order for a first round hit everytime! We are loading 200gr Speer's to just over 3000fps, and getting tip deformation. I have been making sure the necks are dry and clean, no lube left, and that we are sizing the neck fully and have the setback fixed... for now. We have plenty of room in the mag so we glued a strip of rubber to the box to hopefully fix the deformation part, but don't know till we can shoot it again.
    I cured setback with Bergers in my 7mm by turning the sizer in a bit more, and polishing my expander a bit, while removing lube from the neck, which has eliminated the problem for me. Good luck, hope you can figure it out!
     
  8. handloader1

    handloader1 Active Member

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    On my first post I made a mistake, and can't edit it. The sizing button might be oversized. I believe you should have .002" less diameter of the case mouth for hard recoiling rifles, so the expander button should be .336". Measure the case mouth ID after sizing it should be .336 if not the expander button is over sized. You might have better luck using a bushing die. Also, atleast a .338" portion of the neck should be sized. Call RCBS and they can help you with the problem. Good luck.
     
  9. orch

    orch Well-Known Member

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    Hey there,

    I agree with hand loader1, sounds like you are not getting enough neck tension becaus your expander button is too big... You could try polishing it down a thousandth or 2and see if that helps.... Or better yet get a bushing die and do away with the sizer button altogether....
    Also as others have recommended don't crimp non-canalured bullets

    Orch
     
  10. countryrebel

    countryrebel Well-Known Member

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    I know not to crimp non-canalured bullets, I was just trying it to see if it helped. Can anyone recommend a good bushing die? Been working and hunting so I have not had time to take any more measurements. Thanks for all the replies, keep them coming.
    Ok, did some more reading. Might give Lee a call on monday and have them make me a set of dies. I measured my expander on the RCBS die and it measured .336". What are you guys using for polishing down the button?

     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2012
  11. CastleRocker

    CastleRocker Active Member

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    Looking forward to what you do to correct this problem as I just ordered a new Savage in 338 LM.
     
  12. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I was at the range the other day and put a couple of rounds in the mag of my FCP. Didn't have any setback. I'm sizing my neck to .365, and using 300 Bergrrs seated to .030 off the lands with Lapua brass. I wll say that it's important with any heavy recoiling rifle that you make sure you don't keep the same rounds in your mag and continue to load new rounds into the chamber. The bullets in the mag can set back, or you can break the plastic tips off bullets like the Accubond with repeated firings.
     
  13. countryrebel

    countryrebel Well-Known Member

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    No repeated use of rounds, just one firing will push them back.


     
  14. orch

    orch Well-Known Member

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    I had really good luck with my reddng bushing die
    It was the full length sizing bushing die model.... Can't remember the model number but its in their catalog...
    As for polishing the resized button I used 600 grit sand paper chucked the button in my hand drill and carefully turned it down a thou on a 308 die set I had... Sure it's no lathe but it worked fine

    Orch