6.8 Western Load Development

undeg01

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I finally got around to load testing for my 6.8 Western. I started with new, factory Winchester brass and used WLRM primers. I read that there had been success using Ramshot Magnum powder to achieve higher velocities with no pressure concerns, so that’s the route I took.

Having reloaded for a lot of calibers over the years, it has been my experience that maximum load ranges usually do not equate to being the most accurate. To my surprise, that was not the case here.

Rifle is a Browning X-bolt LR (26” barrel) Hells Canyon, running through a 30 caliber Thunderbeast suppressor.

The load I settled on is as follows.

New Winchester Brass @ 2.010”
WLRM primers
69.1 gr Ramshot Magnum
170 gr Berger EOL Hunter bullets
COAL = 2.950”
Lee factory crimp
This recipe reached an average velocity of 2933 fps.
45 - 48 degrees with slight wind, less than 5 mph.

100 yard 3 shot group was well under 1/2”, pictured below.

Loads at 68.7 gr and 68.3 gr yielded groups just under and just over 1/2” respectively.

I have loaded 30 rounds to determine a better average velocity and work on 200 yard groupings.

470689A7-F796-4C19-86A6-742A6C3B5486.jpeg
 
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undeg01

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Got some more testing in and range time at 200 yds.

I put 25 rounds down range, noting velocity on each shot. Average over 25 shots = 2944 fps.

Groupings at 200 yds are still outstanding. The 3 shot group was cold bore shots with wind from my left at less than 5 mph. 1” group at 200 yds is acceptable.

I then put the last 5 rounds of the 25 shot string into the same target, far from cold bore. By that time, the wind was 5-8 mph from my left. Looks like about 1 1/2” group at 200 yds with a hot barrel.

02332290-954C-498E-92D4-494F9D0F9EDA.jpeg
E1150D33-1521-4A0F-B5D6-5C4280055D36.jpeg
 

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