Whats the chance...

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by reachinOUT, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. reachinOUT

    reachinOUT Member

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    there is a powder that will work in a .270 and equally well in a .308. I am hunting for a powder for my buddy's .308 that I could try in my .270. I noticed that IMR 4895 was listed in the sierra manual for both calibers. Anybody have any experience with this powder or any that could work well in both?

    The rifle specs. are:

    .270 1-10 24"

    .308 1-12 24"
     
  2. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    The 4895 will work well in both. It's ideally suited to the 308 with most bullets weights, and works pretty decently with light weight bullets in the 270. It's going to be a bit too fast burning for optimum velocities in the normal or heavy bullets with the 270. It will work, but 4350 or 4831 would be better choices. They, in turn, would be a bit too slow for ideal performance in the 308. Sorry, but there's a reason there's so many powders out there.
     

  3. BigSkyGP

    BigSkyGP Well-Known Member

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    I don't recall exactly wich it was now, still have what's left of the powder. It was H4895 or H4198, recommended for my 6.8 SPC. nearly blew up my 24 inch AR after working up the load for my 18". Yes it was my fault, I backed the charge down, and even below the minimum it was still too fast of a powder.

    Switched to Ramshot, never a problem. I think Hunter, or big game will fit your bill.

    I have used Big Game in the wifes 270 Win, it's not listed for the 270 on Ramshot's load guide. It is listed for 30-06 and 308Win. I can't remember off the top of my head what powder weight I loaded, other than I used 130gr Barnes TSX. It will be a while until I can get to my notes.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2011
  4. reachinOUT

    reachinOUT Member

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    I kind of figured this but one can hope though! lol
     
  5. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Hey, when someone comes up with a universal powder that gives top end velocities in both my 223s and 338 Lapua's, I'm there!
     
  6. reachinOUT

    reachinOUT Member

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    Kevin, what powder would you recommend for the .308 with 160 - 170 grain bullets?
     
  7. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    I used Varget as a standard accuracy test powder for years, but there's absolutley nothing wrong with 4895, either. Lake City uses Reloder 15 for the vaunted M118LR Match/sniper ammo (175 grain HPBT) and I've shot tons of this for certifications over the years. Hard to argue with that, as well. And naturally, V-V N540 or N550 is great stuff for this weight range. Frankly, the 308 is a cartridge where it's harder to work up a "bad" load than it is to come up with a good one. Can't go wrong with any of these.
     
  8. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    As a general rule, larger cases that use equal bullet diameters require slower powders than smaller cases. Also, equal size cases using smaller bullet diameters require slower powders. In addition, heavier bullets for a given case typically require slower powders for optimum and safe performance.

    Examples would be the 308 versus the 30-06. The 06 can utilize more of a slower powder than a 308 for a given bullet weight. There are loads for the 30-06 that use RL19 where if ran in a 308 there is just not enough case capacity to make any real velocity.

    The 308 versus the 260 remington. Same case, different bullet. The 260 will require a slower powder than the 308.

    Comparing the 270 and 308, the 270 has more case capacity and less bore volume. It will require a slower powder unless youre comparing 200 grain 308 bullets to 120 grain 270 bullets, then they may be closer.
     
  9. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    +1 on RL15, VV N540 and N550. These are the only powders I have had any real consistent success with in the 308 albiet I have had fair success with H4895. Never had much success with VARGET despite the fact that so many 308 shooters have.

    M
     
  10. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    Kevin- how much re-15 in the M118LR load ?? also wonder why they don't use an "extreme " powder like varget for the M118LR load ? i do not reload for a the .270. RE-17 too slow for the 308 ?? what about the super powder from hornady?
     
  11. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    I am not Kevin but I suspect they use RL15 because it is such a sweet powder for the 308. They just digest it well. I have never met a 308 that didnt like RL15. I have met plenty that didnt like extreme powders.

    RL17 too slow for the 308? In theory yes, but it works fairly well. It will take compressed loads to get top velocities. I personally ran the 168 AMAX at 2900+ with 50 grains with .3 MOA accuracy. I forget how much but hit 2709 with the 208. It was uncomfortably warm but it gives you an idea of what RL17 will do in a 308.

    As far as Hornady's super powder, they say it is proprietary but the velocities they are getting seem similar to N540 velocities with the 168 and 178. I have no problems getting 2850 out of the 168 and 2750-2800 with the 178 using N540.

    Also, it is my opinion that Federal uses N540 in their gold medal match 168 loads. Last batch I bought had 46.0 grains in it which is what I had been using in my 168 grain loads. Their powder looked just like N540 and running the two over the chrony, the velocities were nearly identical. Is it N540? I dont know but it sure could be.
     
  12. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Well, there's a story there . . . Lake City is what's known as a "go-co" operation; Government Owned, Contractor Operated. That is, the land, the buildings and the fence around it all, along every bit of the tooling used to produce all that ammo is owned by the US Government, while a force of operators is provided by whoever wins the government cotract bid to run the operation. Lake City is a US Army facility, and there's precisely TWO military personal on post; the post commander and his XO, period. All the rest of the thousands who work there are employed by the contractor who operates the plant. Back when Remington had the contract (late 60's early 70's) they also owned DuPont, who at that time produced IMR powders. Remigton did a lengthy series of testing and determined that (Surprise!) IMR 4895 was the ideal powder for the M72 and M118 match ammo, the M852 match ammo, as well as a lot of their other production. Sometime in the late 70's or early 80's, Remington lost the bid, and the contract passed on to Olin-Winchester. Yet another round of testing, and they determined that the be-all, end-all best powder in the world for that same M118 and later M118LR ammo, was an Olin product, WC-750. From that time forward, all their production was done with Olin propellants and extruded tubular IMR powders became a thing of the past. Fast forward to the present day. Some years back, Olin lost the bid and the contract went to ATK, who, coincidentally has Alliant Powders as one of their companies under the ATK umbrella. After yet another exhaustive series of tests, lo and behold, they found that there was no better powder in the world for the M118LR than their very own Reloder 15. By this point some connections should be apparent, if you're paying attention here. Go figure.

    I've loaded (and certified for them in testing) TONS of bullets using their prescribed load of IMR 4895, and then WC-750, and still later Reloder 15, and they all shot just fine. I liked the Reloder 15 quite well, but frankly, there's not a helluva lot of difference between it and the other two powders mentioned in terms of velocity, accuracy or shooting charateristics. Bottom line is, you can turn out damn fine ammo with any of them. I should add that everything else was the same; Cases for such testing and certification were always provided by Lake City, complete with their M43 (match) primer and the ever present asphaltum sealant in the necks. Accuracy standards and velocity requirements were the same for all three, and all three met them just fine. Like I said, they're all good, and it's fairly difficult to screw up a combination that involves the 308 case, a match primer and a good bullet, no matter which powder you use. Hey, that's a good thing!
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2011
  13. reachinOUT

    reachinOUT Member

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    Great stuff guys. I enjoyed reading the explanations of the different powders. The way it stands now, I will get some r15 for my friends .308 and try some h4350 for my .270. I use h4831sc for my loads but want to tinker around with some new powder.
     
  14. Kevin Thomas

    Kevin Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, looks like I forgot to answer this one in my previous response, but there really is no specific answer to this one. Lake City, and most any other ammo contract, virtually never specify a load. At least, not unless they supply the powder that is to be used in that particular run. What they require is a specific set of performance parameters, velocity, pressure, accuracy, etc.. Whatever amount of powder it takes to meet these specs is the amount that will be used. In the case of Lake City, they do an initial work up with every run for the lot of powder that will be used. The ballistics staff works up the load to one-one hundreth of a grain, and that becomes the median charge weight for that run. The velocity for the M118LR was 2,580 @ 78 feet, which equates back to about 2,620,-2,630 fps, something in that ball park. That's what's needed to keep the 175 supersonic at 1,000 yards, which is what that load was designed to do. Nominally, this will take around 41.0-42.0 grains of RL-15, if memory serves correctly. Varies with each lot, so it has to be re-established each and every time, for that particular combination. Sorry, no specific answer, just the parameters for performance.