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Thread: AR-15 (.223) loads... Varget Vs IMR4198

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    AR-15 (.223) loads... Varget Vs IMR4198

    I got a new AR-15 and I bought some nice 62 grn bullets. I figured I would sight it in with some factory rounds and then try out some hand loads.

    So, I went by the Lee Reloading guide and loaded some Varget loads and some IMR4198 loads.
    My Varget loads were from 22.1 grn to 24.1 grn. And my IMR 4198 went from 18.5 to 20.5.

    I know that you can typically shoot slightly compressed Varget loads, so I may go up a little to some load data I found that went to 26 grn...

    My initial thought was that varget would push more and the 4198 would have some kick. In my 45-70, the varget rounds push and the 4198 round KICK...

    Well, long story short, the IMR 4198 burns way to fast and would not cycle the action properly so the cartridges got stuck. And the Varget rounds shot like a dream!

    So, its Varget in my AR.

    One funny observation is that a lot of people shoot 5.56/.223 and they just leave their brass. So, I pick up a ton of brass every time I go to the range. Anyway, I clean it and throw away anything that looks even remotely suspect.

  2. #2
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    Preacher Jim's Avatar
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    Be careful above 24.6 with the varget load I tried the hotter and had some issues plus my groups opened to shotgun pattern.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    I have found that Varget was the powder to use in my AR 223 with 62 gr bullets. It delivered the best accuracy for me with that weight bullet.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    Varget is the magic powder for my .223 rifles. Nothing else I've tried can match it for accuracy. I've read that 4198 was supposed to be extremely accurate in the .223 but in my rifles it falls right in the middle with BL-C2, 748 and similar medium speed powders. They all shoot good, but Varget shoots terrific.

    Uncle R.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    Watch the overall length on varget data, some is for magazine length loads and some is for "long" loads meant to be single loaded, I had very good results with both Varget and reloader 15 in my NRA high power rifle. Both gave very good accuracy but you needed to clean good before switching from one to the other powder. I used 75 hornadies MCHBTHP for 200 and 300, 80 grn JLKs for 600 loaded long and single loaded.

  6. #6
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    nagantguy's Avatar
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    Varget is my best all around 233/5.56 powder ,tried many like others as well but nothing can touch the accuracy or consistency of Varget .

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    I've had good luck with h4895 and the 69 grain match bullet in both my pss bolt gun and my ar15.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I like benchmark better than varget

  9. #9
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    farmerjim's Avatar
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    With the Hornady 55 gr bullets, the perfect varget load fills the case into the neck. It shoots excellent in my AR15 and it shoots dime size groups with my heavy barrel 223 Handy at 100 yds.
    There is no difference between communism and socialism, except in the means of achieving the same ultimate end: communism proposes to enslave men by force, socialismóby vote. It is merely the difference between murder and suicide. Ayn Rand

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    I've been looking at Varget but likely will try BLC(2) as well for the varmint bolt action (long barrel) rifle; I don't mind compressed loads at all if it's accurate!

  11. #11
    Boolit Master TNsailorman's Avatar
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    I have a mini-mauser in .223 and I use H335 in it. I have gotten 1/2" groups routinely with it off a bench. Some down around 3/8". I see no reason to change my load. My little rifle will shoot under an inch or less with H222, Varget, or BLC2. But it does shoot the H335 better and that is what I use. My little rifle with a Burris compact 3x12 still weighs in at around 6 and 1/4 pounds. Life is good, james

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Hick's Avatar
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    You could try CFE 223-- its really good too
    Hick: Iron sights!

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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