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 Working up Load with Case Change

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Rozicrc Posted - Apr 02 2017 : 21:45:04
I have a couple of questions around loading up on a case change. First, i have read and have in a couple of reloading manuals to reduce starting charges by 10% on any component change. In many of the calibers I load for, there is not 10% room between the minimum safe formula and the maximum. I have been reducing to minimum listed, even if it is only 8% off maximum, and working up with no issues but now am questioning if this is correct or not.

Second question is around using lake city reloads for 308. I have sized, uniformed primer pockets and flash holes, trimmed and chamfered, and check headspace with the rcbs tool. I have checked the chamber length with the tool, and seated bullets 0.050" off of them. I've loaded to minimum with h4895 at 41.0 g with 168 SMK's, and had sticky bolts and faint ejector marks on the brass along with primers starting to lose their round. I disassembled several and check the powder weights here as well to make sure I had not screwed something up inadvertently. From reading online many are successfully using book data without pressure signs using LC on 308, while others are reducing slightly based on case capacity with lower volume for powder.

What am I missing around this? This was my first issue with a sticky bolt and to be honest it worried my quite a bit. Any insight is appreciated.
11   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Shastaboat Posted - Apr 04 2017 : 11:09:01
In handloading, your least expense is to buy a chronograph. Good ones can be had for less than $150.00. Even as low as $80.00.
Rozicrc Posted - Apr 04 2017 : 00:24:31
No chronoing. Have not made that investment yet. Also doublechecked the scale, zero and 100 grain are dead nuts
Rozicrc Posted - Apr 04 2017 : 00:19:00
Will do. Thanks for the advice
Shastaboat Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 23:50:26
Seat your bullets deeper. The COAL quoted is just what the manual writer used based on his rifle chamber's throat. If you have magazine length that will allow a longer COAL you could have the throat lengthened but be careful. I've gone too far on one rifle's throat and accuracy went to hell with jacketed bullets. The rifle still shoots cast bullets well as the LEE bullet design is a bore riding design.

Are you chronographing your loads?
Rozicrc Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 22:48:20

Silver primer is the reloads. At 9oclock you can see the ejector mark. Factory 308 is brass primer. You can see more rounding on the outer edges of the primer the last two are coal. I check to see if the throat could be tight with a sharpie and when loaded the bullet gets the sharper pulled off it. There are not rifling marks and I doublechecked the distance to rifling and it is correct. The coal is book value at 2.750 and the ogives are within 0.015 of factory but are a bit longer.
magman Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 18:32:55
re zero & recalibrate your powder scale. double check the charge weight.
check the powder brand & number to be the correct load data for load.
may you do well
WonderMan4 Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 17:34:59
How are you resizing the brass? Also, do the loaded cartridges chamber OK?

Savage rifles sometimes have a short throat.

I have an Axis in 308 Win that I have been working on for the BIL's retirement gift. Beats me, but I can't find the drawing I made of the chamber specs. I will post if I happen to run across it.
Rozicrc Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 13:31:57
Thanks, autocorrect got me on lugs. I will move further back on length. . I load a 22-250 0.090" off the rifling to get the best accuracy. Groups opened up on me after that.
Shastaboat Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 12:43:40
The Savage action is a strong action. Even with a blown primer you aren't going to crack a lug. (Not log) Seat your bullets in deeper to as much as .100" off the lands. Remember the .308 Win was designed for a short action rifle. I suspect you are loading too close to the lands and causing the high pressure. You might have the magazine length but not the throat length. Many people have been mislead by some of the bench rest crowd that loading close to the lands is "always" more accurate. It just isn't so.
Rozicrc Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 12:11:16
Yes I seated 0.050 off the lands. I will weigh tonight and post pics of the spent cases for reloads and commercial. It is a savage 12FV rifle. Thanks for the reply. I know about the case prep being for accuracy but I wanted to get all the possible info out there for laying the cards out. I've also reviewed the bolt for cracks at the logs, is there anything else I need to check before firing the rifle again?
Shastaboat Posted - Apr 03 2017 : 10:42:51
41 gr of 4895 should not be giving you sticky bolt lift or pressure signs if you are doing all other things right. You covered a lot in your post. But your statement, " I have checked the chamber length with the tool, and seated bullets 0.050" off of them." has me confused. Do you mean, You have measured your rifle's chamber throat and you are loading .050 off the lands? My first thought is that you are jamming your bullets into the lands and causing higher pressure. Also posting pictures of your loaded rounds and fired cases really helps a lot. What is your loaded round Over All Length (OAL)?

All of your extra case prep does nothing to control pressure. It sounds like you are doing things that a bench-rest or other precision shooter would do to wring the most potential accuracy from their ammo/rifle. Nothing wrong with doing all of the case prep but some of it may be extra steps with negligible results.

What do your LC cases weigh compared to any commercial cases you may have? Even with that consideration 41 gr of 4895 is at the low end of load data with any case.

Lastly, what rifle are you shooting?

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