.308 Starting Point

taylorjones20

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Dec 28, 2015
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Hello everyone, my BIL just ordered a Savage 11/111 Trophy Hunter XP in .308

I am going to be loading up some ammo for him to shoot (no farther than 300-400 yards) for hunting deer.

I have some Varget powder and hornady 165 grain SST boat tail bullets. I would like to try to get a decent load out of this. Any suggestions on starting point for powder weight? I was kinda thinking around 44 grains...
 

Idaho5r

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Sep 18, 2011
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taylorjones20, Sir, my Hornady #7 Manual (a bit old, I know), lists the 165SST, with Varget : Starting load= 32.6---44.0, as MAX.... I think they are a bit on the conservative side. Use caution tho...... Good Luck! Idaho-5R
 

HARPERC

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So many variables-just because it made me curious, I went to loaddata.com, and just looked at MAX loads for the 165's in a .308. I did see loads Idaho5r posted. The bulk of the ones I looked at, had 46 grains as a maximum. One went to 48.

I always try to use multiple sources to get a feel for what the collective experience is, but default to the most conservative to start with.
 

Idaho5r

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I agree with HARPERC, I also try to use multiple sources. The only one I had handy was the older Hornady Manual. Also, it actually listed the 165 SST. Idaho-5R
 

LoneTraveler

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Feb 7, 2014
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Nosler's Reloading Guide 8, Lists Varget 42.0 (Fourty Two) as starting load and 46.0 (Fourty Six) max.
Hornady 7th ed. lists Varget 32.6 Gr. (Thirty Two and 6 Tenth) Starting, and 44.0 Gr. (Fourty Four) as Max.
Hope this may help.
IMR 4064 is my go to for 308 Win. also.
 

codyadams

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Jan 7, 2015
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I shot Varget and the 168 A-Max in both my .308's with 47.5 grains in my rem 700 and 46.8 grains in my savage 11 trophy hunter, but the first was a stout load. On my 6th reload my primer pockets loosened to the point I couldn't load any more. I would personally start at 40 and load up in 1 grain increments with the 165.

The 168 was going 2675 in my rem 700 and 2725 in the savage with my loads, both 20" tubes, both very accurate.
 

codyadams

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Jan 7, 2015
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I will add that I now shoot the Berger 215 seated at 2.980" OAL (.050" off lands) with Reloder 17 in my Savage Trophy Hunter, and out of the 20" barrel it is going 2575, seems to be fine on brass and is shooting 1-1.25" groups at 200 if I do my part....This is a suprisingly fast barrel though, I worked up to pressure in a 20" barreled rem 700 .308 with the same components and pressured out at 2490, and found my best accuracy at 2410. The OAL was close to the same.
 

jpfrog

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Mar 19, 2011
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TX
Fed 210 have always been good for me for large rifle primer needs. CCI is pretty solid, too- I've had a couple issues with their small rifle primers and light strikes, but not many, and only at the range (so far) so no real harm done. I personally have never had an issue with Federal, but I'm sure others have different experiences.

Probably wouldn't hurt to grab some of a few different manufacturers and find out what works best with your brass/powder/bullet combo in your rifle. Most places will break up a brick and sell them to you at the 100 pack instead of the full 1k...or find some like minded folks who don't mind swapping here and there.
 

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