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View Poll Results: Which powder for Ishapore in .308

Voters
17. You may not vote on this poll
  • Red Dot - moderate plinking load

    3 17.65%
  • BL-C(2) - 2k plus fps

    4 23.53%
  • Varget

    2 11.76%
  • 8209 XBR

    0 0%
  • IMR 4895 or H4895

    10 58.82%
  • H335

    1 5.88%
  • 2400

    3 17.65%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: Loading for the Ishapore in 308

  1. #1
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Loading for the Ishapore in 308

    Need to develop a load for an Ishapore in 308. I like Enfield in 303 so this was a natural when my thoughts turned to 308 caliber bolt guns.

    I have an assortment of powders. Some I know I'm going to try in the initial 4 or so powders I'll try in laddered loads in 5 shot groups. This is the focus of this poll, you can select more than one. I'm looking for peoples top couple of powders for the given use. And what loads have given them good results.

    My top three were
    • Red Dot - too many people swear by "The Load" for milsurps of this size. Suggested load start is around 10 grains and 13 is suggested max. Plinker load is fun and whole family can shoot.
    • BL-C(2) - because I have a good supply and it is close to the original military powder used in the NATO version of the 308.
    • Varget - have it, know people who have good loads from several similar calibers for it. Has uses I load for, so I keep some on hand. Adding 308 would leverage that supply well.


    Then it gets tricky. I have several other possible powders. None in large quantity but certainly enough to do load development. Hence the poll. Want loads from the powders I have. Already too many 1 - 3 pound collections of this powder or that. Trying to get that down to more powder in fewer flavors.

    Bullet weight going forward will be between 160 and 170 grain. Right now going with 170 grain cast lead, gas check Lee 309-170 mold for testing. I do have some j-word stuff between 162 and 180 but not as concerned with that as I am with loads for cast lead.

    Powders that will load across those weights of bullets well are better than one that works really well at a single weight. Especially if it is one of the very light or very heavy bullets I'm not loading.

    So to recap will be trying Red Dot, BL-C(2), Varget. Using a 170 grain bullet from Lyman #2 or softer WW/Pb + Sn mix with PC and some of the Lyman will have tumble lube (alox & floor wax) Poll is looking for how people feel about the listed powders. Hopefully they have further info on loads they like or didn't like with the powders they voted for.

    I know there are other good powders but... I have too many flavors as it is. Would rather buy 8# jug of a couple powders than have 2 pounds of 8 powders that do the same job. In the past there was time where a pound in hand was a win. So please focus on the listed powders.
    Last edited by RogerDat; 03-23-2020 at 04:27 PM.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

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    The 4895s were the choice for high power shooters in 308 along with 4064. Varget as worked well for me also. Another set to consider is reloader 12 and 15

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Reverend Al's Avatar
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    Cast loads won't pose any problem since they are low pressure, but if you are contemplating any full power jacketed loads keep in mind that the Lee Enfield action was designed for a 37,000 pound pressure cartridge (original .303 British military ball) and now you are loading a cartridge that is in the 55,000 pound range (Nato spec military 7.62 / .308). These rifles weren't purpose built for the higher pressures of the 7.62 cartridge, they were conversions of old .303 rifles. I'd tend to be a bit conservative on any full power loads just to be safe. Just my 2 cents worth ...
    I may have passed my "Best Before" date, but I haven't reached my "Expiry" date!

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy


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    My old Ishapore shot well with cast bullets and a variety of pistol powders (Red Dot seemed to work the best). Fun to shoot, easy on the wallet and easy on the shoulder.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    I'm not sure where the pressure will show up. The Ishapore was manufactured from scratch to be a 308. They used some parts and tooling from the Mk3 but they also redid several things to match the requirements of the 7.62 NATO cartridge. The Home Guard (national guard) of India was issued these and the police there still use them with the 7.62 so I would think they are up to the sammi specifications for "regular" loads.

    That said I'm never a big fan of hot loads in rifles that are old enough to get the senior discount at McDonald's and movie theaters. Although taking a rifle to either place is probably not a good idea. I like the idea of the Red Dot load for that reason. Most target ranges where it would be used are at 100 meters or less. And I can find nothing bad to say about economical and easy on the shoulder shooting.

    I do want something suitable for longer but not necessarily long range. That would be why the 2000+ fps load is desired. I did read where the Red Dot 1,400 fps load and 30 caliber bullet wasn't that different than what was being used to hunt deer as the "normal" rifle round for about a generation.

    I should have included 4064 I sort of forgot that one.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    The Ishapor was retooled to function with NATO .308 ammo. It's a strong action.

  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 725 View Post
    The Ishapor was retooled to function with NATO .308 ammo. It's a strong action.
    Thanks for the confirmation. It is an interesting rifle. Last bolt action issued as main rifle to regular military of a country. Indian Home Guard. Filled a niche of using existing factory (jobs saved) to produce a useful rifle that is still in use today. The difference between the early and late models is... one little thing.... the range on the rear sight. The original had 1300 meters like the Enfield but the the later version had an 800 meter range for sight adjustment that reflected the usable range of the 308.

    Nice rifle. I'm hoping to load up my 20 or so rounds per powder and get out to try them. May have to ask a neighbor to loan me some acreage and stay away for a bit.

    Surprised no one mentions 8208 XBR I thought 308 was a prime use for this powder.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    Roger,

    In my Ishapor .308s, my best loads are Lyman #311467 (175 grain) and the Lee C312.185-1R and 13.5 grains of Unique. I water quench my wheelweight boolits by dropping them from the moulds into a bucket of water and size them .309. Hope this helps.

    Adam

  9. #9
    Boolit Master JoeJames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Helmer View Post
    Roger,

    In my Ishapor .308s, my best loads are Lyman #311467 (175 grain) and the Lee C312.185-1R and 13.5 grains of Unique. I water quench my wheelweight boolits by dropping them from the moulds into a bucket of water and size them .309. Hope this helps.

    Adam
    How well does it shoot? Local gun shop has one and I've been pondering it.
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  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeJames View Post
    How well does it shoot? Local gun shop has one and I've been pondering it.
    I'm just in the process of loading to find out. Still have some cosmoline to clean off too. So I can't speak from experience to your question. These are reported to be very accurate. They have a 12 round magazine and take the Enfield style stripper clips, handy features if you ever want to try the "mad minute" accuracy test.

    There are scope mounts of sorts available too. But the stock sights are supposed to be decent. Just old eyes software sometimes like a little help to get the best from the rifle hardware.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeJames View Post
    How well does it shoot? Local gun shop has one and I've been pondering it.
    Joe,

    Both my Jungle Carbine and MkIII .308s shoot cast boolits to the same point of aim and impact at 100 yards at the same sight setting as I use for my 150 grain jacketed loads. My cast loads are my accuracy loads.

    I use G.I. stripper clips that I also use in my M1917s, M1903s and 7mm Mausers.

    Adam

  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master WILCO's Avatar
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    I like 16 grains of 2400.

    Congrats on getting the rifle.
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  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    I called Hogdon about a year ago after I bought an 8 pounder of 8208 at a good price from a guy. I specified I was going to use once-fired LC 7.62 brass and they gave me load ranges for 147 and 168-175 jacked bullets. They did the same for 4895, 3031, and 4064 for the 147s and also 748 for the 168-175s. The nice guy I spoke to was an engineer and very easy to talk to. GF

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    I have one that dates back to 1965 and shot it using the South African 7.62x51 ammo. surprised me with the accuracy. Except the piece with the square ears around the front sight is off kilter. Had to be careful not to use the ears as a front sight. Probably take it off,plug the hole with a small dowell glued in place. And redrill the hole. Wood is nothing to write home about as it's so oil soaked the wood is almost black. Frank

  15. #15
    Boolit Grand Master 303Guy's Avatar
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    The oil can be removed by soaking with paint thinners or boiling in water with dishwashing liquid. I've done both and both worked but it takes a while for wet wood to dry out and return to normal dimensions. Thinners takes time with repeated wiping off and of course, lots of thinners. In the end, the wood looks terrible until coated again.
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  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 303Guy View Post
    The oil can be removed by soaking with paint thinners or boiling in water with dishwashing liquid. I've done both and both worked but it takes a while for wet wood to dry out and return to normal dimensions. Thinners takes time with repeated wiping off and of course, lots of thinners. In the end, the wood looks terrible until coated again.
    Thanks for the info. The rifles (and Enfields in general) are noted for being oil soaked right behind the bolt, where the stock begins. The guns were oiled and stacked butt down. Naturally over time that oil tended to permeate the wood where it seeped down every time the rifle was oiled and stacked.

    I'm seeing more votes for 4895 it seems to be a clear favorite from the small results set in the poll. BL-C(2), 4895 and Varget are all a fairly close group in terms of burn rate and load amounts. I have some 4895 so it may well end up getting some test rounds since about half the votes are for it.
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master JoeJames's Avatar
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    One little warning: I did not know this when I first took a stock off of an Enfield. Always remove the fore stock first before you unscrew the bolt holding the butt stock in place. If you try to remove the butt stock first there is a little nut on the end inside the lower fore stock which is liable to turn and crack the lower fore stock. I am sure you know that, but just in case ...
    You Can Vote Your Way Into Socialism, But You Have To Shoot Your Way Out of it.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Have an Ishapore #4 forestock I've been playing around with. Draws were improperly done and the back of the stock has cracked in two places. Removed the damaged wood and hopefully will epoxy in a dutchman then file down to the correct shape. The draws will require that the old wood be removed and one solid piece of walnut be epoxyed in place and shaped so that they bear evenly on the action body. Bought one of the small bench belt and disc sanders at Harbor freight to thin down the walnut to a proper thickness. Took the damaged wood out at the back of the forestock today. Used some old needle files to clean that area up.Gotta have something to do while staying home. Spent the last few days trimming a life oak because the branches were so low couldn't cut the grass in that area. Stay safe. Frank

  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    Not within your request but,:
    311041 ~ 32 grs 4198, Works in mine but go low and see what you build up to in yours.
    180 Speer Grand Slam ~ 37.3 3031 " " .

  20. #20
    Boolit Grand Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 725 View Post
    Not within your request but,:
    311041 ~ 32 grs 4198, Works in mine but go low and see what you build up to in yours.
    180 Speer Grand Slam ~ 37.3 3031 " " .
    Online non-cast 4198 isn't listed in load data. Lyman Cast Bullet manual lists it. Like varget it is a "staple" in my pantry so I'm going to give it a try.

    Am really not having good luck with loads for BL-C(2) powder. Jacketed yes. But with a starting load for jacketed a decent amount over 2000 fps there really isn't much room above starting load for cast. Downloading ball powder is something I heard is a bit iffy and probably best avoided. So I'm still searching around for the best cast load for BL-C(2).
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

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