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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

Today I started reloading for my 308, after reading all the info and looking at what components are available to me here in Australia I have decided to use the following components.

Winchester Brass

Federal Primers

Nosler Ballistic Tip 168 grain

Australian Defence Industries (ADI) AR2208 powder (identical to Hodgdon Varget which is rebranded AR2208 I have been informed).

I have been recommended to use 45 grains of powder for around 2600fps in my 20" barrel SPS Tactical.

Here is my problem, I figured I start with some milder loads, so I started reloading a few (5) with 43.5grains, and also 44grains, I stopped here as when I seat the bullet (overall length of 71mm close to recommended maximum length), I feel the powder compressing (and hear it getting crushed when I listen closely).

Is this correct??? Should this be happeneing, or am I doing something wrong??? Are my scales out??? I am not going to reload any more ammo till I can get some answers to this as I am concerned of getting too much pressure, are the cases supposed to be that full??

I feel this will be worse when I get to load 45grains of powder.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Ps I have been reloading for about ten years for my .222, but nothing else.

Might post this on another forum as well as I am really concerned about this......
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for that link, it looks like the powder starts to compress at 44 grains from my personal experience today, so I might load some lower charges, I have loaded 43.5 and 44 so far, I might make some 43, 44.5 and 45 grain rounds.

I really want to make the 168 grain ballistic tip my pet load for my SPS Tactical as it will suit most things I want to do with it, and I am not a big fan of using different loads, I have used the same load for my .222 for years, also using Nosler ballistic tips, 50 grains in that case. They work great at the range and in the field.

Will re check my scales for accuracy, and then I will head to the range for some test fires!

Any other feed back will still be appreciated.
 

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I use 45 grains of Varget in Winchester cases with 168 grain bullets, both B.T.'s and SMK'S
and have had no problem what so ever.
Compressed Varget loads are safe up to a point and should not cause any problems in that
weight range. You might try lightly shaking the case to allow the powder to settle some but you will
still hear/feel a slight crunch when seating the bullet to it's recommended depth.
I would tell you to start lower and look for pressure signs on your way to
45 grains. That's assuming your powder is the same as Varget. That would be my primary concern.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, I felt the slight crunch at 44 grains, yes have confirmed the powder is the same again today, and have looked at various reloading charts on the net today for both Varget as well as the AR2208, they are the same powder, made by the same manufacturer, just re branded for different markets, even reloading manuals list both powders as using the same charge weight.

Thanks for the feed back guys, I feel a lot better now, assisted by your comments and my own research on the net, so will reload some more rounds and head to the range in the next week or two.....as soon as I get a chance, very keen to let some round off at the range, then off into the bush to chase some deer.
 

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I think you will find the 45 grain charge and a 168 grain bullet to be a good shooting
and accurate load for your rifle.
Let us know how it does.
 

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I also use 45 grains of Varget with 168 SMK's and CCI BR2 primers and Winchester brass. I've had no problems with it and it's very accurate in my SPS Tactical. I second what BadKarma said!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well tried the hand loads out today, right the way to 45 grains, nil issues at all, as a matter of fact the 45 grain loads performed the best, will post some photos up later when I get a chance to do so.

But at this stage the SPS performed brilliantly, and I will reload some more 45 grain loads and head to the bigger range, ie 100 yards and 200 yards.....yes unfortunately that is the bigger range as my local range is only 25 meters and 50 meters.

I only went there to try the loads today and to get the scope on paper......by the way absolutely LOVE the scope....it's brilliant, it's the only scope I have ever had where I can see my heart beat as I look through it!

Thanks for the help guys, I am now back on track.
 

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For some reason Varget and Remington just seem to work together.
My 1000 yard load is a 175 SMK over 44 grains of Varget.
Dial on 35 minutes elevation and let er rip out of a 26 inch SPS Varmint.
Same load works at 1000 yards in a 20 inch Tactical, I would have to pull my data card
for the elevation but it will get there in fine fashion.
I've seen the 45 grain Varget 168 SMK work at 1000 yards as well despite what you might read on the
internet. Not tack driving accurate but it will sure ding the **** out of a torso sized steel target.
 

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I too am using 45grs. of Varget in my Remington Model 700 .308 but with 165gr. Nosler Ballistic Tips or Partitions. My 700 is a Standard SPS Barrel that I had shortened and recrowned to 20". My velocities are 2612 FPS for the Ballistic Tips and 2620 FPS for the Partitions.

I use a PACT Electronic Digital Powder Dispenser and Scale to measure all my powder charges and drop them into my cases with a Midway Funnel with a 3" or 4" drop tube. I have found that using the drop tube gets the powder positioned (packed if you will) in my cases the same way every time and seems to have improved accuracy a bit. I also do not experience any powder crunching at all with 45grs. with my Ballistic Tips or Partitions seated to an overall cartridge length of 2.825".

This past Sunday our Shooters Club had our annual Sight in Day, Fun shoot. We had a steel ram silhouette set up at 460 yards, gallon milk jugs full of water at 100 yards, 200 yards and 300 yards.

Using my Bushnell Elite 3200 3x9x40mm Firefly Riflescope I know that the distance from the point of my duplex to the center of the crosshair at 450 yards is 25". A quick look at my drop chart showed I'd be 30" low at 450 yards with my 206 yard zero. I held the point of my duplex on the rams back and hit it ever time. The gallon water jugs weren't safe either.

The more I read up on the .308 the more I seem to notice a pattern of 45grs. of Varget with a 165 - 168gr. Bullet seems to be the load of choice for more and more .308 shooters.

Larry
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That sounds like fun.

Here is what I came up with today, these are the first 20 rounds ever fired through my SPS, and you can already see the 45 grain preference.

The powder drop tube is one thing I was considering as well after reading up more about the subject.

Anyway here it is, and I will fine tune around the 45 grain load once I head to the 100 and 200 yard range, once I get the hang of that it's an even longer drive for ranges longer than 200 yards.





Those are with the rifle straight out of the box, shot off a Harris bi pod with no rear bag, just my shoulder supporting the rear of the stock.

All goups are 5 rounds per target.
 

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Once again 45 grains it is. It's really weird that it works in so many
different rifles but that seems to be the magic ticket.
You will probably see some improvement as you put more rounds
down the tube. If it's that tight at 25 rounds it should only get better.
I really like the 168 BT, it gives you match accuracy in a bullet that will drop
a deer like a bad habit. It's just the best of both worlds in my opinion.
You might check out youtube.com and look for videos by SHlowlight which are the guys
from Snipershide.com. They have several how to videos on long range shooting
that are pretty good and might be of some help to you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for all the help and advice guys, I am new to this long range stuff, but I am already excited and am very happy with my purchase of a Remington SPS Tactical, a lot of gun for a reasonable amount of money.

And yes I am hoping to be using the 168 grain projectile on wild pigs and deer, this is the main reason I bought a 308, as I want to get into deer hunting, and some long range sniping at feral pigs and goats.

Long rang for me has been 200-250 meters, can not wait to start reaching beyond that, but need some more trigger time before then.

Will check out youtube as well.

Thanks again this site is awsome, and a source of much experience.
 
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