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Thread: Need some guidance on which powder for a range of rifles

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Need some guidance on which powder for a range of rifles

    I'm getting ready to expand my reloading into some of my older military rifles that I haven't shot for a while due to not being able to find ammo. I'm looking for some guidance as to which powders I should be focusing on. I've got another baby on the way and I'm very soon not going to have a lot of free time to do a lot of load development, so whatever you guys can do to help me get the most use out of my time, I'd appreciate.

    I'm looking to load the following:

    300 Blackout (AR-15)
    30-06 (M1 Garand)
    7.5 Swiss
    7.7 Jap
    .303 Brit
    8mm Mauser

    I'm looking to get a powder that would work decently in all of those. Not really looking for benchrest accuracy, but reasonably accurate, and able to cycle the two semi-autos.

    Powders I already have:

    A1680
    IMR 3031
    Unique
    H110 (not my favorite. It leaks pretty bad in my Lee powder measure)

    Powders I'm thinking of getting:

    IMR 4227 and 4198

    Is there one of those that would be better for me to focus on? One I haven't thought of?

  2. #2
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    ShooterAZ's Avatar
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    IMR 4227 and 4198 are very good cast boolit powders. H110 & 1680 is good for supersonic loads in the 300BLK. 4895 is a good choice in the Garand. I don't have personal experience with the other Milsurps on your list, but 2400, RL7, 3031 and 4895 should cover those nicely with cast boolits. I assume this will be used with cast...

    Here is a sticky that might help as well:

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...Rifles-Article

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    According to that sticky, 4227 may be the ticket.

  4. #4
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    I bought a fair amount of IMR4227 during the last powder drought. I couldn't find any 2400 then and the more I use IMR4227, the more I like it.

  5. #5
    Boolit Man
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    AA1680 is excellent for the 300BO. (As you probably know.)

    Hodgdon or IMR 4895 should do well in all the rest.

  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy
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    For the blackout your h110 & 1680 will work fine for the sonic loads and the unique for subsonic. For the other calibers try imr 4064 it works very well in military calibers.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    If you want a good all around powder for all of those that will operate the gas systems of most any gas operated semi H4895 is your powder. It can be loaded down to 60% of max safely and generally still operate gas systems at around that level and delivers decent accuracy usually. Is it going to be ideal for each one and extremely accurate, no. but with work should be acceptable for them.

  8. #8
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    I don't load for 7.7 Jap, but have obtained acceptable (approx. 2 MOA @ 100 yds) results with H4895 in .30-06, .308 WCF, .303 Brit, 8x57, and 7.5 Swiss. Not my 'go-to' for all of those but gets the job done pretty well when using the heavier boolits that I prefer...like 175 gr. or better.

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  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Hawkeye View Post
    For the blackout your h110 & 1680 will work fine for the sonic loads and the unique for subsonic. For the other calibers try imr 4064 it works very well in military calibers.
    I do have a bunch of 4064 but I couldn't find any load data for it in the Lyman cast handbook. Am I missing something?

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    H/IMR 4895 for all but the 300 BO, it needs somenthing faster and denser. AA 1680 is one of the more popular powders for the 300 BO. 4895 is like Unique in pistols, it works in just about everything. Between those two powders you'd be covered.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Accurate 5744 or Reloader 7 are very good in all military calibers. SR 4759 is out of production and was the go to powder for cast boolits in almost everything. 5744 or RL 7 are good substitutes but are harder to get the "node" as to the most accurate load. Sometimes Reddot can give great accuracy in reduced loads or even medium loads. All of the above powders are not position sensitive and can be shot with no filler. If you can't get accurate loads with this info ask Larry Gibson , he is the guru.

  12. #12
    Boolit Buddy
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    Oops I was thinking for jacketed bullets using 4064. For cast I've been trying reloader 7 and unique

  13. #13
    Boolit Master RU shooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goryshaw View Post
    H/IMR 4895 for all but the 300 BO, it needs somenthing faster and denser. AA 1680 is one of the more popular powders for the 300 BO. 4895 is like Unique in pistols, it works in just about everything. Between those two powders you'd be covered.
    My 300 BO would run with cast and 4895 all depends how they are set up . Wasn't the fastest load but would function 100 percent with a case full under the Lee 155 or 185 . That 3031 the OP has would prob work as well just never tried that one in the BO
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!

  14. #14
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    IMR 3031 for the big ones, 1680 for the little one.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy
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    As luck would have it, the one place near me that sells powder had a pound of 4227, so I picked that up yesterday. I'm going to try out the Harris "Workhorse Load" from the sticky first. Says 17 gr. of 4227 (naturally, I'll be working up from 15 gr.) should be good for just about all the calibers I'm looking to load for, even the 300 BO.

    After that, I'm probably going to try the 3031, but if 4227 works it'll just be for curiosity's sake.

  16. #16
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    I don't think you will be disappointed with IMR4227. If you can find any 2400, be sure to grab it! I was down to my last 2 pounds of it when I luckily found a 4lb jug at my local Sportsman's Warehouse. That powder has been hard to find here for a long time.

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    Yeah, I initially went there to look for some 2400, but then I saw the bottle of 4227, so I snatched it up. I told the guy to call me if they get any 2400 back in stock

  18. #18
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    Reloder7 is within a hair of the 'speed' of IMR4198 and meters a whole lot better. I won't be buying any more IMR4198 after I run out of it: '7' works well for me in a lot of cases.
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  19. #19
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    Was able to get out to the range to test my ladders with some IMR 4227. I had loads ready for the 7.5 Swiss and 300 Blk. Some interesting results.

    First, I loaded up 5 rounds of 15 gr., 16 gr. and 17 gr. for both calibers. I shot at 50 yards just to make sure everything was on paper and so I could actually see the holes without having to get my lazy butt up from the bench.

    The 7.5 Swiss performed well with all three loads, but really liked the 17 gr. load (no surprise). Groups at 50 were right around 1 inch, which is about as good as I can do with military irons and GP 11 surplus ammo. I'll be fine tuning this load (maybe try some 16.5 gr. up to 17.5) and taking it out to 100 and 200 yards.

    The 300 Blk was a little surprising. It really liked the 15 and 16 gr. loads (about 1.25 and 1.5 inch groups respectively), but the 17 gr. load was a shotgun pattern. I know 17 gr. is near max for the 300, so maybe that had something to do with it. But after I shout those loads I went back and shot some I had loaded with A1680 that I know were pretty decent, and I couldn't get them into a group to save my life. Not sure what's going on there, but I noticed there was a lot of carbon buildup on the bolt and on the handguards right around the gas block when I got home. Maybe that 17gr. load fouled things up so bad it affected accuracy, or something. Really got me confused.

    Next will be trying out some 30-06 in the M1 to see if these loads will cycle the action and give me some decent accuracy, and maybe by then I'll have my new NOE mold (316-155) up and running so I can load up some 7.7 Jap and 303 Brit at the same time

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check