Retumbo vs US869

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
Trying to decide on a powder for 300 gr projos for the .338 Lapua. Narrowed it down to Retumbo and us 869. Any preferences between the two? Why? Any recipies to share?

Thanks!
 
M

milo 2.0

Guest
Trying to decide on a powder for 300 gr projos for the .338 Lapua. Narrowed it down to Retumbo and us 869. Any preferences between the two? Why? Any recipies to share?

Thanks!

On the slow end of things, I'd maybe stop at VV 24N41. I really question the burn rate of US 869, I think it's a little lower on the chart than it should be, it's a ball powder and really getting away from the larger kernal- slower philosophy.
 

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
Copy and thanks. Looked like it would get me comparable velocities and pressure with just a bit more powder than retumbo. And I cant find any retumbo...
 

bodywerks

Gunny Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Jan 19, 2010
1,645
53
46
Tucson,Arizona
My experience with it is in a savage 110ba in 338lm. I wanted to try it to see if it would cure my bolt lift/difficult extraction issues when firing 300gr pills. It took care of those issues but wouldn't group for shit (read 3+"groups at 100 yards). I think it is too slow of a burn rate, just a guess.

Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk 2
 

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
My experience with it is in a savage 110ba in 338lm. I wanted to try it to see if it would cure my bolt lift/difficult extraction issues when firing 300gr pills. It took care of those issues but wouldn't group for shit (read 3+"groups at 100 yards). I think it is too slow of a burn rate, just a guess.

Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk 2

Too slow? Or too fast a burn rate?
 

bodywerks

Gunny Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Jan 19, 2010
1,645
53
46
Tucson,Arizona
To slow. I don't even think all the powder was ignited by the time the bullet left the barrel. I got a lot of muzzle flash with it.

Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk 2
 

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
Gotcha. This is with us869 to confirm? Retumbo is even slower burning, righy? What is your barrel length? Did you chrono these loads?
 
M

milo 2.0

Guest
Last edited:

1SMALLJOHNSON

Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Jun 8, 2007
403
3
Tallahassee, FLORIDA
I have shot US 869 in my .338 Lapua, both with 250 grain and 300 grain bullets. With a fresh barrel, I was 1 MOA or better at 100 yards. My 300 grain charge weight was 103.5 grains. If you're not grouping even 3" at 100 yards, and if you don't think you're burning out all the powder, then I'd guess your throat might be washed out. What was your round count?

I have also shot tiny little bug-hole groups using US 869 in my .338 Norma Magnum and 300 grain bullets. I'm not bragging, but half minute was not an issue with this combination.

On both occasions, I was using 300 grain HPBT bullets.

Were you perhaps using lathe turned solids or something else?

There's nothing wrong with the accuracy of US 869 out of my guns.
 

Attachments

  • 338 Norma.jpg
    338 Norma.jpg
    80.1 KB · Views: 37
Last edited:

bodywerks

Gunny Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Jan 19, 2010
1,645
53
46
Tucson,Arizona
I have shot US 869 in my .338 Lapua, both with 250 grain and 300 grain bullets. With a fresh barrel, I was 1 MOA or better at 100 yards. My 300 grain charge weight was 103.5 grains. If you're not grouping even 3" at 100 yards, and if you don't think you're burning out all the powder, then I'd guess your throat might be washed out. What was your round count?

I have also shot tiny little bug-hole groups using US 869 in my .338 Norma Magnum and 300 grain bullets. I'm not bragging, but half minute was not an issue with this combination.

On both occasions, I was using 300 grain HPBT bullets.

Were you perhaps using lathe turned solids or something else?

There's nothing wrong with the accuracy of US 869 out of my guns.

I'll bet you have a much longer barrel than me. Mine was only 26"and i believe that included the brake. It only had about 100 rounds through it. It was also a fast, 9 twist barrel.

Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk 2
 

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
I'm not going to tell you to stay away from it, just do more research.

OK my friend! I have done a bit more reading. Win Supreme 780 seems to fill the bill nicely. Seems to keep up with Retumbo velocity wise, usually within 50 fps, and seems to operate at lower pressures. I understand that it is a ball powder and fits into the burn rate charts a bit higher than retumbo. Have you any experience with it?
 
M

milo 2.0

Guest
OK my friend! I have done a bit more reading. Win Supreme 780 seems to fill the bill nicely. Seems to keep up with Retumbo velocity wise, usually within 50 fps, and seems to operate at lower pressures. I understand that it is a ball powder and fits into the burn rate charts a bit higher than retumbo. Have you any experience with it?

I had really bad luck with US869 in a .338 snipetac, not enough case fill, had hangfires, scary shit. I honestly can't say it will happen in your case, I just don't know. 1smalljohnson says it works, he would have more insight than me.
If I were you, I'd buy VV N570, it's pretty much tailored for this case, use the link I provided earlier, the powder is costly, but your case is expensive to shoot anyway.
Ramshot Magnum, Retumbo, N570, and VV 24N41 should all work, heavy bullet, slow powder. I'll have to research Win 780, and you can only buy 24N41 in 8lb containers, so finding a pound from another guy would help.
By Hodgdon's web data, retumbo, and 869 are the only powder going over 2600fps, they give it their blessing.
For the cheytac rounds, there is no published data, I was on my own, I just tell people to use caution when using it, I may be out of line doing so. look in the reloading depot section, I'm sure there will be some members loads in there.
 
Last edited:

rcamuglia

Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 18, 2011
146
1
58
Nuevo Mexico
I developed a couple of loads with the US-869 in the .338 Lapua; with 250 grain Scenars and 300 grain Sierras. 101.5 grains gave around 2750 with the 300's and 102.5 gave over 3000 with the 250's. Accuracy is good. 2" of vertical on the Sierra load at 1000 yards.
 

Spectre1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Feb 22, 2013
52
0
New Mexico
I developed a couple of loads with the US-869 in the .338 Lapua; with 250 grain Scenars and 300 grain Sierras. 101.5 grains gave around 2750 with the 300's and 102.5 gave over 3000 with the 250's. Accuracy is good. 2" of vertical on the Sierra load at 1000 yards.

Great! Thanks! What is your barrel length?
 

eddybo

Sergeant
Full Member
Minuteman
Mar 29, 2008
493
0
52
MS
It is going to depend on your barrel I guess. Just tried some of the old thunderbird 870 which has a burn rate very close to 869 in 338Lm with 300 bergers. There was no love there. Best I could manage was 8 inches of vertical at 800 yards. Thiings worked a bit better with N570.
 

chariotdriver

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
May 27, 2011
79
0
56
Olympia, WA
869 has some serious temperature variations. The guys shooting at the 50 bmg range keep them in ice coolers full of hand warmers so they stay a nice 120F before shooting. It is not an extreme powder like retumbo, h1000, or varget, etc. It's slower than 50bmg which I have used and while it grouped under moa it was a little slow it is also compressed.......like 101gr with 300gr scenars.
 

Yasherka

Irritant
Full Member
Minuteman
  • Jun 3, 2009
    1,893
    1,378
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I was recently doing a lot of research on the 869 vs Retumbo. Best I was able to glean was that 869 is just too slow unless you are pushing a heavy (285/300gr) bullet through a 30+ inch tube.

    Powder Valley seems to always have 869 in stock and my thoughts were to try it as I am currently shooting 250 Scenars and wanted to move up to the 285 Hornadys... but there is no load data using 4831sc (current powder-of-choice). However, my TRG only has a 27" barrel. I wanted to try either H1000 or Retumbo but I have not been able to find them at all.

    This is all from a theoretical standpoint, but the short version seems to be the results will be disappointing unless you have a long barrel. Assuming you can find it, stick with Retumbo. Lots of success stories on here from people using it.
     

    Spectre1

    Private
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 22, 2013
    52
    0
    New Mexico
    Thanks. I have been unsuccessful in locating any Retumbo, but UPS delivered a couple of pounds of 869 today that I can play with next week...
     
    Last edited:

    Sgt45

    Private
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Jan 23, 2012
    0
    0
    75
    Ann Arbor, MI
    Anybody using RL 33? I have a load for the 300 Berger's, but I'd like to try the 285 Hornady match bullets and I can't find any loading info for it.
     

    Spectre1

    Private
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 22, 2013
    52
    0
    New Mexico
    Looks like 102.5 gr of US869 under a Nosler 300 gr AB is going to be a great load for me. Shooting bug holes right now. Hope to stretch its legs later this week and see how it does at longer ranges. Have yet to chronograph it, but this load has some horsepower!
     

    1SMALLJOHNSON

    Sergeant
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Jun 8, 2007
    403
    3
    Tallahassee, FLORIDA
    869 has some serious temperature variations. The guys shooting at the 50 bmg range keep them in ice coolers full of hand warmers so they stay a nice 120F before shooting. It is not an extreme powder like retumbo, h1000, or varget, etc. It's slower than 50bmg which I have used and while it grouped under moa it was a little slow it is also compressed.......like 101gr with 300gr scenars.

    Chariot,

    US869 is darn near flat for velocity swing at temps, with jacketed bullets. The only problem I've ever seen with this powder was with bore riders. Those are the ones with the driving band at full caliber, but the body of the bullet at bore (not groove) diameter. I'm guessing that the bore riders don't provide enough resistance for this powder. Everything else (ball, 750 AMAX, South African for example) shoots with almost no velocity change.

    I know a bunch of 50 BMG shooters who were accustomed to keeping their rounds in a cooler for matches, but they were shooting VV 20N29. Is it possible that we're talking about those folks?