280 instead of 280AI

Elkwonder

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Nov 28, 2010
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443
I am riding the fence on 280 vs 280AI. Here is the deal, I am a small guy that hates recoil as I shoot a ton and love practicing with what I actually hunt with in the field. The thing is, I have a 280AI on order and am thinking about changing it to the standard 280 for a couple reasons. First off, the standard 280 loads will perform well enough for me, without the extra recoil of going to the 280AI. Also , I like the idea of being able to get NORMA 280 brass instead of NOSLER 280AI brass. I like that the Norma brass is a buck a piece as well as having a better reputation of quality brass over the Nosler 280AI brass being $1.75 a piece and having a little more of a spotty reputation.
What else am I missing here?
Which caliber will be easier on brass and barrel life? Also how noticeable is the recoil difference?
Im thinking hard about changing my order to the standard 280 instead of the 280AI....
I know the regular 280 isn't as cool, but then again Ive never been that cool anyways!!!
 

stomp442

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Aug 15, 2013
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Safford Arizona
You can always fire form the Norma brass to the AI version, its not that big of a deal. Barrel will need to be broke in and load development done anyways. As far as recoil goes you would probably be hard pressed to tell the difference between the standard and Ackley version. If you can tell a difference a nice recoil pad goes a long ways. The Ackley will be much better on brass as you will very rarely need to trim. barrel life is really a moot point as we are only talking a few more grains of powder.
 

gohring3006

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If you really want a .280 just order it with a 26-28" barrel it will be right there with a 24" AI. But as Stomp said, fireforming is not that big of a deal for a reloader, if you don't reload then fireforming is not important..
 

MudRunner2005

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Oct 13, 2008
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I am riding the fence on 280 vs 280AI. Here is the deal, I am a small guy that hates recoil as I shoot a ton and love practicing with what I actually hunt with in the field. The thing is, I have a 280AI on order and am thinking about changing it to the standard 280 for a couple reasons. First off, the standard 280 loads will perform well enough for me, without the extra recoil of going to the 280AI. Also , I like the idea of being able to get NORMA 280 brass instead of NOSLER 280AI brass. I like that the Norma brass is a buck a piece as well as having a better reputation of quality brass over the Nosler 280AI brass being $1.75 a piece and having a little more of a spotty reputation.
What else am I missing here?
Which caliber will be easier on brass and barrel life? Also how noticeable is the recoil difference?
Im thinking hard about changing my order to the standard 280 instead of the 280AI....
I know the regular 280 isn't as cool, but then again Ive never been that cool anyways!!!
Recoil between a .280 Rem and a .280 AI will be negligible at best... I doubt your shoulder will barely even notice the difference.

You can form Norma 280 brass into .280 AI brass with a simple fire-forming step involved in your loading process. Load a light load of fast burning powder, a cheap bullet Hornady Interlok that's pressed into the lands. Then shoot and you have instant AI brass. Simple.

I have never heard comments about Norma being better than Nosler brass, as it has been rumored for many many years that Norma makes Nosler's brass for them. I have had excellent luck with Nosler brass and Norma brass.

Brass life will be longer with the AI version. It is one of the often looked-over advantages to the AI case design.
 

Elkwonder

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Nov 28, 2010
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443
Thanks guys....280 AI it is. I just need to make sure the 280AI is the right move for me and not the 7-08. Its definitely between those two and Im leaning towards the 280AI for performance, but towards the 7-08 for recoil reasons. I think Im going 280AI...lol
 

Limbic

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Jun 26, 2008
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323
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Jackson Ms
Brass is a big deal. Like someone said - I really only like to shoot calibers that Lapua makes brass for. That being said I anneal my brass (nosler) after each firing and neck size .002. I use my ack for hunting and target practice and haven't had any real problems.
 

lancetkenyon

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Jun 3, 2013
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You can load a .280AI DOWN to .280 Rem or 7-08 velocities, but not vice versa.

And you can go ahead and work up a good accurate fire forming load that will shoot sub-MOA all day long while forming .280 Rem to .280 Ackley brass.

Pick what brass/bullet/powder you like and enjoy the new rifle.

I load .25-06 Rem brass with the same bullets (115 HVLD) I like for my .25-06 Ackley. They are about 250fps slower in my fire-forming loads though. But plenty accurate out to 1371 yds.
 

Elkwonder

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Nov 28, 2010
Messages
443
My mind is made up...lol
Im going with the Montana Rifle Co. 280AI with a custom #5 contour and flutes. Going to order it in the morning! Thanks for all the help guys
 

The Oregonian

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If it were me I would go by a target weight and figure out what components will fit that, mainly stock and barrel. What will the overall weight be with a 4 and a 5?
 

Elkwonder

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Nov 28, 2010
Messages
443
best guess is 8.4 pounds with the #5 contour. I will be putting a fairly light scope on it with a Swarovski. So I will save a little weight there.
 

Garycrow

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Jan 30, 2011
Messages
503
A #5 contour barrel is not something I would carry for hunting, it's far too heavy. I once had a 7mm STW with a hart #4 & that was too heavy also, hunting rifles now top out at a #3 contour for me. A MRC action is already a very heavy action, put a #5 barrel on there, fluted or not, & it's going to be one heavy rifle. The number one mistake people make with custom rifles is building them too heavy. They usually become safe queens very quickly.
 
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