.308 Winchester

bluejay75

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I've tried it in a few different 308 projectiles

What I've tried it in the most is Sierra 155 TMK. I got almost the exact same velocity with book max of varget and book max of 4166. It was right around the 2930 FPS range out of a 26" Proof Steel Prefit for an Impact. Great temp stability and I got good SD's with it

I settled on IMR4895 because I'm getting a little over 3000FPS with it with the 155 Sierra TMK's
What COAL? With both powders. To get those speeds you’re compressing. Suggest a charge window for both as have them but haven’t shot them with 155s. I have Scenars.
 

bluejay75

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2.96” coal

I’m at 46.2 grains of IMR 4895 and if I use a drop tube, I’m getting consistent seating depths
That is exactly how much Varget Im running with the 155 Scenar at 2.838 MAG Length. 46.6 shot better but I wasnt getting consistent seating depth. I made a small ball of JB weld then stuck it in the seating plug. Then lubed a heavily crimped dummy round and let it set at full stroke. That "custom stem" works really well in seating that short and not deforming the bullet.
 

DJL2

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I've got some 195 TMK laying around, might branch out from those to supplement my factory ammo consumption. My weak search-fu only shows one result in this thread for those bullets... which surprises me. Am I missing something? Are the 200.20X and the like just that much better? Is it that the 155s are the hotness for those that aren't going heavy?

Either way, I've been able to scrounge a few pounds of IMR 4166, so I guess I know where I'm starting.
 

Downzero

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    I've got some 195 TMK laying around, might branch out from those to supplement my factory ammo consumption. My weak search-fu only shows one result in this thread for those bullets... which surprises me. Am I missing something? Are the 200.20X and the like just that much better? Is it that the 155s are the hotness for those that aren't going heavy?

    Either way, I've been able to scrounge a few pounds of IMR 4166, so I guess I know where I'm starting.
    I used to really shoot a lot of the 155s. I switched to the 175 SMK and I'm just about out, and thinking about switching back again. Of course there are none available anywhere!
     

    DocRDS

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    SMK are usually around. Its not like finding varget (F*** Varget!). Midsouth has them right now.

    I do wonder about some of you fellas and those super-heavy bullets. has anyone thrown them in a BC to see their benefits? I suspect lowlight is gonna be along to smack us all and tell us lighter and faster. 185 is about my limit before I need to pull out a magnum.
     

    rijndael

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    I've got some 195 TMK laying around

    195 TMKs ran great for me out of a factory 700. The long throat helped seat them longer. I used Varget, about the same amount as I used with the 195s.
     
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    straightshooter1

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    I used to really shoot a lot of the 155s. I switched to the 175 SMK and I'm just about out, and thinking about switching back again. Of course there are none available anywhere!

    You might want to check out the 169 SMK's??? They've got a higher BC than the 175's at .527 and also they're also a longer bullet than the 175's. These 169 SMK's have been work very well for me with the same powder I use for the 168's and 175's. Many places have the 169's available and at a lower cost the either the 168's or 175's (why, I dunno . . . but these days I'm not going to argue for getting them under $200).
     

    Downzero

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    You might want to check out the 169 SMK's??? They've got a higher BC than the 175's at .527 and also they're also a longer bullet than the 175's. These 169 SMK's have been work very well for me with the same powder I use for the 168's and 175's. Many places have the 169's available and at a lower cost the either the 168's or 175's (why, I dunno . . . but these days I'm not going to argue for getting them under $200).

    I'll have to run some ballistic calculator information to figure out if these will be superior to the 155s. How are they in terms of seating depth sensitivity for you?
     
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    straightshooter1

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    I'll have to run some ballistic calculator information to figure out if these will be superior to the 155s. How are they in terms of seating depth sensitivity for you?

    So far, in my experience I can see no difference from either the 168's or 175's. The 169's look to be like a hybrid ogive and definitely more forgiving than a secant ogive.

    With the velocities I'm getting my ballistic calculator show it being stable out past 1200 yds. from the 1:10 Krieger 26" barrel.
     

    Downzero

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    So far, in my experience I can see no difference from either the 168's or 175's. The 169's look to be like a hybrid ogive and definitely more forgiving than a secant ogive.

    With the velocities I'm getting my ballistic calculator show it being stable out past 1200 yds. from the 1:10 Krieger 26" barrel.
    I ran some numbers and while the new 169 is superior to the old school SMKs, the 155 is significantly superior to the new 169 in terms of performance, even if you assume as Brian Litz has shown that the 155 TMK has the same BC as the 155 (new) Palma bullet.

    By "significantly," it's not quite 10%, but it's not trivial. If I could get a 500 pack of the 169s, I may give them a try. Bummed that they designed an entirely new bullet that doesn't actually perform better than one they already had, however.
     

    straightshooter1

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    I ran some numbers and while the new 169 is superior to the old school SMKs, the 155 is significantly superior to the new 169 in terms of performance, even if you assume as Brian Litz has shown that the 155 TMK has the same BC as the 155 (new) Palma bullet.

    By "significantly," it's not quite 10%, but it's not trivial. If I could get a 500 pack of the 169s, I may give them a try. Bummed that they designed an entirely new bullet that doesn't actually perform better than one they already had, however.
    Plenty of 500 packs at Blue Collar Reloading: https://www.bluecollarreloading.com...ierra-30cal-169gr-hpbt?variant=39250057494626
     

    DJL2

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    SMK are usually around. Its not like finding varget (F*** Varget!). Midsouth has them right now.

    I do wonder about some of you fellas and those super-heavy bullets. has anyone thrown them in a BC to see their benefits? I suspect lowlight is gonna be along to smack us all and tell us lighter and faster. 185 is about my limit before I need to pull out a magnum.
    I have been using essentially the same methodology Litz demonstrates in AB to compare bullets for a while. I had originally purchased these for a .30-06 when I couldn't find 208 ELD-M, thus why they're lying around.

    With a "normal" rifle, there's the concern that COL eats your powder volume and you lose relative performance. I fully acknowledge that. However, if they "work" in your chamber and magazine setup, it comes down to what problem you're trying to solve. I would invite your attention to this article: https://rifleshooter.com/2016/11/si...k-load-development-308-winchester-and-varget/

    While the comparison in that article clearly omits a number of very good projectiles, it does highlight the advantage of a more aerodynamic bullet at range.
     
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    Downzero

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    SMK are usually around. Its not like finding varget (F*** Varget!). Midsouth has them right now.

    I do wonder about some of you fellas and those super-heavy bullets. has anyone thrown them in a BC to see their benefits? I suspect lowlight is gonna be along to smack us all and tell us lighter and faster. 185 is about my limit before I need to pull out a magnum.

    My rifle is a 12 twist so I never tried it.

    Although I do have plenty of Varget.
     
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    DocRDS

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    I have been using essentially the same methodology Litz demonstrates in AB to compare bullets for a while. I had originally purchased these for a .30-06 when I couldn't find 208 ELD-M, thus why they're lying around.

    With a "normal" rifle, there's the concern that COL eats your powder volume and you lose relative performance. I fully acknowledge that. However, if they "work" in your chamber and magazine setup, it comes down to what problem you're trying to solve. I would invite your attention to this article: https://rifleshooter.com/2016/11/si...k-load-development-308-winchester-and-varget/

    While the comparison in that article clearly omits a number of very good projectiles, it does highlight the advantage of a more aerodynamic bullet at range.
    You SOB, I think you just made me buy a 1:10 308 twist barrel for that incoming AT-X.

    I'll definatly check out the profiles in AB as I get more proficient. 308 is such an odd caliber anymore (or maybe I should say 'going through a transition')--When I scaled top projectiles from 223, 6, 6.5 up to 308 the corresponding weight was 190ish, but that convinced me I needed either 30-06 or 300 Win Mag to get the speed (Somehow I got it in my head you need to be between 2700-2900 FPS--which is probably something I heard but can't prove). Maybe 308 isn't dead yet. And despite my best efforts to be a manbun lover, the 308 bolt is still my best shooting rifle.

    @Downzero Just gotta throw you some shade. I'm newer to reloading so I've never even seen a bottle of Varget. Even right before the pandemic when I started it was scarce. I've been surviving on 4064 and MR2000
     
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    You SOB, I think you just made me buy a 1:10 308 twist barrel for that incoming AT-X.

    I'll definatly check out the profiles in AB as I get more proficient. 308 is such an odd caliber anymore (or maybe I should say 'going through a transition')--When I scaled top projectiles from 223, 6, 6.5 up to 308 the corresponding weight was 190ish, but that convinced me I needed either 30-06 or 300 Win Mag to get the speed (Somehow I got it in my head you need to be between 2700-2900 FPS--which is probably something I heard but can't prove). Maybe 308 isn't dead yet. And despite my best efforts to be a manbun lover, the 308 bolt is still my best shooting rifle.

    @Downzero Just gotta throw you some shade. I'm newer to reloading so I've never even seen a bottle of Varget. Even right before the pandemic when I started it was scarce. I've been surviving on 4064 and MR2000
    Funny. I too got bit by the 308w bug in the last scarce cycle. When things calm down again and everyone is fighting for Creedmoor stuff I’ll be alone and happy stacking 308w and the OG improved 308w……the 243w.
     
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    DocRDS

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    The FTR guys do pretty damn well with 18 pound 308's off of a bipod at 1000 yards.

    I think that the most popular FTR load out there right now is a Berger 200.20x going around 2650 FPS in most cases.
    Just for full caution in case any other inexperienced shooters are out there (like me)--those are not factory chambers. Trying to get that kind of load in a standard 308 may result in personal injury. I was reading up on this (see i do listen!) and I think the OAL was over 3 inches on some and they were using fairly long barrels of 28 to 32 inches. I think that was where my disconnect was--My experience was on 24" barrel with mag length seating, so i was like WTF are those velocities (150+ faster than the 195 SMK!!!) ...
     

    thestoicmarcusaurelius

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    Just for full caution in case any other inexperienced shooters are out there (like me)--those are not factory chambers. Trying to get that kind of load in a standard 308 may result in personal injury. I was reading up on this (see i do listen!) and I think the OAL was over 3 inches on some and they were using fairly long barrels of 28 to 32 inches. I think that was where my disconnect was--My experience was on 24" barrel with mag length seating, so i was like WTF are those velocities (150+ faster than the 195 SMK!!!) ...

    I think some if not all of that has been covered before in this thread, especially the freebore specs and loading long.

    I believe the "freebore" on a typical SAAMI spec reamer is in the range of .090" freebore.

    I believe the "freebore" on a typical FTR style reamer is in the range of .168" and goes up to the .225" range.

    They also can't use mags under the rules in FTR so single feeding is required. They load their bullets out long to get as much powder into the case as they can.

    Here's an article about it. I think he goes on podcasts where he gives more details

     

    Downzero

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    I think some if not all of that has been covered before in this thread, especially the freebore specs and loading long.

    I believe the "freebore" on a typical SAAMI spec reamer is in the range of .090" freebore.

    I believe the "freebore" on a typical FTR style reamer is in the range of .168" and goes up to the .225" range.

    They also can't use mags under the rules in FTR so single feeding is required. They load their bullets out long to get as much powder into the case as they can.

    Here's an article about it. I think he goes on podcasts where he gives more details


    What is F/TR palma? I even looked at the rules and I don't see a division for that. I also thought Palma was shot with 155 grain bullets and iron sights, so I can't even figure out what they're talking about (e.g., scopes and 200 grain bullets in a Palma competition).
     

    thestoicmarcusaurelius

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    What is F/TR palma? I even looked at the rules and I don't see a division for that. I also thought Palma was shot with 155 grain bullets and iron sights, so I can't even figure out what they're talking about (e.g., scopes and 200 grain bullets in a Palma competition).

    I don't really know for sure. I think it just means that they shoot at three distances like 800, 900, and 1000 yards.

    I am definitely not an F-Class guy but I do think they are miles ahead in their hand loading techniques so I like to talk to them. I'm just a hunter and a couple of precision rifle matches per year type of guy right now.

    Another thing that is funny to me is that a 308 with a Sierra 155 TMK at 3000FPS is almost exactly the same as a 6BR with a Berger 105 Hybrid at 2900FPS on both drop and wind all the way out to 1000 yards.
     

    Downzero

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    Another thing that is funny to me is that a 308 with a Sierra 155 TMK at 3000FPS is almost exactly the same as a 6BR with a Berger 105 Hybrid at 2900FPS on both drop and wind all the way out to 1000 yards.
    That may be, but I couldn't get 3000 fps out of my 24" barrel (although a dedicated F class rifle might have a 30 or even a 32 inch barrel and maybe could) and most of the people shooting 6mm cartridges in PRS are using a 108 grain Hornady and are achieving higher velocity than 3000 FPS (because they're not running a 6 BR, they're using a Dasher, or a 6mm Creedmoor, or something with more capacity than 6BR). In both sports, there is a pauper's division for those of us shooting .308 for a reason--the ballistic advantage is substantial.

    Your comparison isn't apples to apples or even close, which is why the massive ballistic advantage 6mm cartridges have in competition appears to vanish on unrealistic assumptions (100+ fps there on the 155 TMK out of a realistic barrel length, and -100 fps/irrelevant cartridge comparison).

    Also, I don't know if you're aware, but Brian Litz's blog has published that the 155 TMK doesn't actually have a higher BC in the real world compared to the Sierra 155 grain 2156. Sierra claims a .504 G1 BC on the latter and .519 on the former, but apparently when analyzed with radar, there's no demonstrable difference. Still, the BCs are impressive and probably among the best that any magazine-length .308 round can use, but perhaps not as good as your calculators make them look. The same may also be true for the heaviest 6mm bullets as well, but I don't have a 6 anymore so I can't say I'm as familiar with them as I am the .308. VLD bullets look really sleek and awesome on paper, but ballistic models aren't perfect and the BC in the real world may be lower than measured under certain lab conditions.
     

    thestoicmarcusaurelius

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    That may be, but I couldn't get 3000 fps out of my 24" barrel (although a dedicated F class rifle might have a 30 or even a 32 inch barrel and maybe could) and most of the people shooting 6mm cartridges in PRS are using a 108 grain Hornady and are achieving higher velocity than 3000 FPS (because they're not running a 6 BR, they're using a Dasher, or a 6mm Creedmoor, or something with more capacity than 6BR). In both sports, there is a pauper's division for those of us shooting .308 for a reason--the ballistic advantage is substantial.

    Your comparison isn't apples to apples or even close, which is why the massive ballistic advantage 6mm cartridges have in competition appears to vanish on unrealistic assumptions (100+ fps there on the 155 TMK out of a realistic barrel length, and -100 fps/irrelevant cartridge comparison).

    Also, I don't know if you're aware, but Brian Litz's blog has published that the 155 TMK doesn't actually have a higher BC in the real world compared to the Sierra 155 grain 2156. Sierra claims a .504 G1 BC on the latter and .519 on the former, but apparently when analyzed with radar, there's no demonstrable difference. Still, the BCs are impressive and probably among the best that any magazine-length .308 round can use, but perhaps not as good as your calculators make them look. The same may also be true for the heaviest 6mm bullets as well, but I don't have a 6 anymore so I can't say I'm as familiar with them as I am the .308. VLD bullets look really sleek and awesome on paper, but ballistic models aren't perfect and the BC in the real world may be lower than measured under certain lab conditions.


    It wasn't really a PRS related comment. Obviously, the 6BR is going to have a huge advantage in PRS for the lower recoil alone.

    It was more a general comment that people somehow think that a 308 can't do well at 1000 or further and people never say anything like that about 6BR when they both have very similar elevation and drop with attainable loads out of 26" barrels which are common for PRS.

    Personally, I see 10x as many 6BR variants or Dashers as I do 6 Creeds at matches.

    I bought the 308 as a trainer for my match 6 creed and it's been a lot of fun playing around with.

    My labradar tells me I get over 3000FPS with no pressure signs out of a 26" proof prefit with the TMK's. I am shooting a 6 Creed Proof Prefit right around 3130 with Berger 109 LRHT's. I've been so impressed with the Proof Prefits that I now have 5 or 6 Proof 308 barrels and 4 6 Creed Proof barrels.

    My actual 155TMK drop was 3.4mils at 600 yards on multiple occasions.
     

    Downzero

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    It wasn't really a PRS related comment. Obviously, the 6BR is going to have a huge advantage in PRS for the lower recoil alone.

    It was more a general comment that people somehow think that a 308 can't do well at 1000 or further and people never say anything like that about 6BR when they both have very similar elevation and drop with attainable loads out of 26" barrels which are common for PRS.

    Personally, I see 10x as many 6BR variants or Dashers as I do 6 Creeds at matches.

    I bought the 308 as a trainer for my match 6 creed and it's been a lot of fun playing around with.

    My labradar tells me I get over 3000FPS with no pressure signs out of a 26" proof prefit with the TMK's. I am shooting a 6 Creed Proof Prefit right around 3130 with Berger 109 LRHT's. I've been so impressed with the Proof Prefits that I now have 5 or 6 Proof 308 barrels and 4 6 Creed Proof barrels.

    My actual 155TMK drop was 3.4mils at 600 yards on multiple occasions.
    I shoot at 1000 (or even further, was shooting 1150 a few weeks ago) with a .308. I dunno why people would think a .308 can't perform at 1000. I shoot my 223 out to 800 yards with magazine length cartridges as well. If people are saying that a 308 won't perform at 1k, they're not trying.
     

    Darkside-Six

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    I’ve been running 42.5 IMR 4064 behind Berger 168 Hybrids right at 2690. Lapua Brass and FED210 primers. Thing is an absolute hammer.
     
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    Baddog 0302

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    What is F/TR palma? I even looked at the rules and I don't see a division for that. I also thought Palma was shot with 155 grain bullets and iron sights, so I can't even figure out what they're talking about (e.g., scopes and 200 grain bullets in a Palma competition).
    F/TR if F class Tactical or something like that, shooters are limited to 223 & 308 chamberings
     

    db2000

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    I’ve been running 42.5 IMR 4064 behind Berger 168 Hybrids right at 2690. Lapua Brass and FED210 primers. Thing is an absolute hammer.
    I get 2650 185 Juggs Varget 43.5 gr and 2740 175 SMK H4895 42.2 gr w/ 24” 1:10 FGMM 210M and brass
     

    bluejay75

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    Varget is starting to feel overrated. Im feeling that IMR 4064 is performing more consistently across more bullet weights and types. A slight edge in velocity to Varget...but lot to lot 4064 is waaaayyyyy more consistent and predictable.
     

    straightshooter1

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    Varget is starting to feel overrated. Im feeling that IMR 4064 is performing more consistently across more bullet weights and types. A slight edge in velocity to Varget...but lot to lot 4064 is waaaayyyyy more consistent and predictable.

    The only thing that bugs me about IMR-4064 is being able to meter those little logs with consistency that one can more easily get with a power like Varget. :rolleyes: ;)
     
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    Snuby642

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    Just ordered 500 of the new 169g smk's.
    I think they should work well in my sons (mag lenght) 20 inch gun.

    Trick will be to get more varget that evidently is the best in his 20 inch that we have had.
     

    Darkside-Six

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    Varget is starting to feel overrated. Im feeling that IMR 4064 is performing more consistently across more bullet weights and types. A slight edge in velocity to Varget...but lot to lot 4064 is waaaayyyyy more consistent and predictable.
    Same. Varget was hit or miss for me in 308. I see a lot of shooter swear by it but I found a decent load with 175SMK’s but IMR 4064 is way easier. And easier to come by. If you can’t find a load with 4064 then something is wrong with your rifle. Hahaha.
     
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    bluejay75

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    Same. Varget was hit or miss for me in 308. I see a lot of shooter swear by it but I found a decent load with 175SMK’s but IMR 4064 is way easier. And easier to come by. If you can’t find a load with 4064 then something is wrong with your rifle. Hahaha.
    Where’s your 4064 node with that bullet. I’m at 43-43.2.
     

    Darkside-Six

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    What COAL? Sometimes we miss some good stuff in just how we pick increments. Im going to try that and see if its more forgiving.
    I’d have to go back through my data book but I think so where around 0.02 off lands to Ogive.
     

    Downzero

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    F/TR if F class Tactical or something like that, shooters are limited to 223 & 308 chamberings
    I know what F T/R is and I know what Palma is, but I've never heard of a match combining the two and I can find no reference in the NRA rules to it. If people are shooting 200 grain bullets and scopes, that isn't "Palma."
     
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    PracticalTactical

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    I shoot at 1000 (or even further, was shooting 1150 a few weeks ago) with a .308. I dunno why people would think a .308 can't perform at 1000. I shoot my 223 out to 800 yards with magazine length cartridges as well. If people are saying that a 308 won't perform at 1k, they're not trying.

    Ya, no doubt... I wouldnt say guys are not trying, they probably just dont know the tricks to do it well at long range.

    I was in a match some years ago where a Farench guy der out of Quebec (Star Shooter) I never shot with before showed up with a long throated 308 running 185 Jugs, while I was running a .3075" bore Krieger with 155 SMKs. At short range I had better accuracy and took a few distances, but I started to fade at 900 and just fell apart at 1000.

    I shot paired next to this guy for the finals because he was in first and I was in second overall... I got a first hand look at the accuracy he was getting at 1000 over me. I was fighting to hold the 4 ring (In Canada that's like an 8 in the states) While he was throwing bricks at the 5 ring (10 in the states) and V Bull (V Bull is an X in the states.)

    I went home with about a dozen second place awards and the guy out of Quebec running 185 Berger Jugs had a stack of gold.

    So ya.. a 308 can certainly be set up to stay supersonic past 1000.

    Needless to say, after he took me to school I ordered a new reamer, barrel and changed to a longer throat configuration with heavier bullets.
     
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    jLorenzo

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    Found the lands in my Howa finally, can anyone give me a frame of reference as far as throats go? It seems long judging by how the jammed round looks. What is a standard .308 throat?
    COAL 2.9190
    CBTO 2.3275
    with 155 SMK
     

    db2000

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    Decided to revisit IMR4064 as it gave 3-6 SD in my bolt gun and good groups. Varget have single digit SDs closer to 10. Same 10 rd groups though.
    Did some runs in my new Seekins SP10 to see what it liked. Already Varget 43 and 185 Juggs (43.5 was too hot although my bolt gun likes it). Varget was the better choice. Maybe going up on IMR would be better. Didn’t try another weight besides 42.5 gr. Also only had a few loaded so not very strong data. 🍻

    10/25/21
    67F 79% 29.72 in

    B 185 Jugg
    IMR 4064 42.5
    FC brass x 2
    BTO 2.145 (max for mag)
    2494, 2487, 2510, 2509, 2515
    2503, 2520, 2502, 2503 SD 10.1
    2.0” minimal pressure

    B 185 Jugg
    V 43.0
    FC brass x2
    BTO 2.145
    COL 2.2008
    2494, 2500, 2504, 2491 SD 5.8
    1.25” minimal pressure
     

    Downzero

    -
    Full Member
    Minuteman
  • Oct 15, 2006
    2,493
    182
    NM
    Ya, no doubt... I wouldnt say guys are not trying, they probably just dont know the tricks to do it well at long range.

    I was in a match some years ago where a Farench guy der out of Quebec (Star Shooter) I never shot with before showed up with a long throated 308 running 185 Jugs, while I was running a .3075" bore Krieger with 155 SMKs. At short range I had better accuracy and took a few distances, but I started to fade at 900 and just fell apart at 1000.

    I shot paired next to this guy for the finals because he was in first and I was in second overall... I got a first hand look at the accuracy he was getting at 1000 over me. I was fighting to hold the 4 ring (In Canada that's like an 8 in the states) While he was throwing bricks at the 5 ring (10 in the states) and V Bull (V Bull is an X in the states.)

    I went home with about a dozen second place awards and the guy out of Quebec running 185 Berger Jugs had a stack of gold.

    So ya.. a 308 can certainly be set up to stay supersonic past 1000.

    Needless to say, after he took me to school I ordered a new reamer, barrel and changed to a longer throat configuration with heavier bullets.

    Everything I shoot is out of a magazine. It might be a long magazine, but it's out of a magazine. I haven't tried 185s or anything like that because my 12 twist won't stabilize them anyway. Certainly for F class type shooting, you're going to want to get all you can out of the cartridge. But there is nothing unconventional needed to make a .308 shoot at 1000 other than bullets with a G1 BC over .500.
     

    Snuby642

    Two Star General
    Full Member
    Minuteman
  • Feb 11, 2017
    7,046
    8,553
    My precious.

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