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Pip squeak loads .308

Discussion in 'Ammo & Reloading' started by swampratt, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    So i have a Ruger .308 that does not shoot tight enough groups for me.
    The chamber is iffy.
    But it may be the perfect candidate for reduced loads with cast bullets.

    I have a 32-20 and I made a few bullets for it using the Lee 311-93-1R mold it gave me .311" diameter bullets at 104 gr with soft lead after powder coating them.
    I sized to .309" and loaded some into some neck turned and annealed Federal cases.
    https://leeprecision.com/mold-dc-311-93-1r.html

    Yes i neck turned them. I found with cast bullets neck turning really improves the groups.
    And I want to leave nothing on the table for this rifle.

    I decided to use red dot powder as it has proven very stable and accurate for me in very reduced loads.

    I started with 3.5 gr.
    That was quite loud.. not what i expected.
    Reduced to 3.0 gr. then 2.2 and then 2.0 and then 1.5 gr.

    The 1.5 gr load would still pass through 5/8" ply wood. and sink into a mulberry stump to the base of the bullet.
    Still a bit loud.
    I will head out to the range and test.

    This should be a real money saver as far as components go. I will stick with 2.0 gr load as that is what the Lee .3cc dipper throws. Keep it simple.


    001.JPG
     
  2. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    AAAHHHH another HUGE positive to this tiny load is I do not need to resize my fired cases!!!

    Yep that is correct.
    In fact I fired 6 rounds through 1 case and it has not changed in length and the neck ID is the same .306"
    Just brush the case neck ID and wipe the outside of the case and reprime and load.

    Here is a 5 shot group from the NOT resized case and 2.0gr of powder ..

    Target range 20 feet.
    These loads were quick scooped with the lee dipper.. some were level and some just below level.. probably would not amount to 1 tenth of a grain.

    002.JPG
     
  3. EKing

    EKing Marksman

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    Cool idea, what is your velocity?

    I've not had good luck with the Lee dippers. I've tried skimming the top level with a flat plastic tool, I've scooped and tried dropping the powder into the dipper. How are you doing it?
     
  4. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    I have no idea on velocity but I would bet somewhere around 300 fps I will chrony it later.
    For this shooting I just put some powder into a glass bowl..like you get picante sauce in when you go out to eat.
    I just ran the scooper through the powder and dumped it into the cases.

    But for my accuracy work and Lee dippers I will trickle powder into the dipper from another dipper.
    Now you need to keep the distance between the 2 dippers the same.
    Do not tap the dipper or bump it against the glass rim.
    When you level it off do it with a paper business card.. slowly ..I place the card on the dipper and level it by rocking back and forth then I "slowly" saw the card back and forth like screeting off concrete.

    That has been the most accurate way for me to fill the dippers.
    I have good accuracy taking a case like 454 or 44 mag and trickling into it.
    I will pinch cases to get the volume I need.

    Trickle at the same distance above the case and at the same speed every time.
    If you trickle fast you will not have the same measurement as if you went slow.. height makes a difference also.

    If you find an accuracy node you can be off on the charge as much as 5 tenths of a grain and not hurt 250 yard and under loads.
    Now that is with a .308 running 41-42gr of powder and a short 18" barrel.
    I found the shorter barrel has a larger node window than a longer 22-24" barrel.
     
  5. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    664.5 fps measured 10 feet from the muzzle.
     
  6. EKing

    EKing Marksman

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    That's good velocity from such a small amount of powder. You have a pretty useful load there, especially since you don't have to resize the cases every time and your cost is about 5 cents per round (guessing).

    The only loads I used the dippers were with 357 and 44 Mag loads and H110 powder. The Lee dippers worked better than the Lee perfect powder measure, but I often could not get the charge I wanted because the dippers go from 0.7 to 1.0 to 1.3. How I wished for a something between the given sizes.

    For one load I was making, I found that a 10mm case held the perfect amount of powder so I made this.

    Lee dipper.jpg

    Just hot glued a 10mm case to a cut down dipper. It worked great, but now I have the Lyman Brass Smith powder dispenser so I don't even mess with the Lee dippers anymore.
     
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  7. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    I love that homemade dipper.

    I can't get consistent throws with the elastomer or drum type Lee powder dispensers.
    But i do have an old Lee auto disc powder measure.. no elastomer wiper in this one.. but the clearance between the disc and the hopper was too much and powder would get between the 2 parts.
    I of course tweaked that with some handy surfacing with a file and it does not leak and with bullseye powder it will drop on the tenth every time.
    I use it with bullseye powder only as I have 357-38 and 45acp loads that use that powder.
    I have went through 8 lbs of bullseye and it still drops on the money.

    I have not tried H110 or 296 in it.
    Now the Lee perfect powder measure works great with BL-C2 but what would not work great with that powder
     
  8. Gunbuffer

    Gunbuffer Sharpshooter

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    Something like trail boss might b the b’s knees
     
  9. swampratt

    swampratt Sharpshooter

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    I shot the rounds yesterday 60 yards results in 2-2.5" groups I shot 2 5 shot groups and 1 8 shot group.
    The 8 shot was mixed cases some were fired and not sized many times and some cases fired 1 or 2 times or not at all.
    They still grouped almost the same as just using a single case and firing it many times.

    At 30 yards the impact is in the same area as 60 yards.

    I tried some 170gr lead bullets and they hit much lower and do not group at all with this load.
    About 7" group with the heavy lead.

    I then wanted to shoot through milk jugs..I had only1 gallon jug and a 1/2 gallon and a gatorade.
    It went through all 3 and into a cedar tree about 3/4" and bounced out of the tree and back into the gallon milk jug which was last in line.
    The bullet had rifling groves and no lead exposed. slightly smaller diameter not mushed though.
    I stuck it back into a case and fired it again.

    I hollow pointed one of them and it did not expand shooting through water.
    I then doubled the charge made another hollowpoint .6cc or 4 gr of powder and it was shot through a 16oz aluminum can filled with water and then into a 2x6 and it peeled the can open passed through the 2x6 and buried into a rail road tie.
    It was sideways in the tie slightly mushroomed.

    So do not expect expansion with this.
    This should make for a fun inexpensive load accurate enough to bang steel with or shoot cans/clays or oranges.
    I added up my cost to make them and came up with $4.24 for 100 rounds.
    I got a bargain on my last lead purchase.

    Now I need to cast up a bunch more lead bullets and get to powder coating.
    Zero recoil or darn close to zero and not too loud.
     

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