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Thread: Need some help with a 7mm-08

  1. #1

    Default Need some help with a 7mm-08

    It's been a while!

    I have had a Roy Vanguard 7mm-08 sitting in the cabinet untouched for some time now. It is one of the first S2's to hit the shelves. I've scoped it up with a new Weaver 6.5-20x-50mm. My intent for this gun is to shoot in the USBR 100 meter sporter class. I started out shooting in the 22 cal 50 meter class a couple of springs ago and was consistently shooting in the mid to upper 230s. After us 22 guys got done the centerfire guys took over. This year one particular very wealthy custom gun shooting snob(not everyone that is wealthy and shoots a custom gun is a snob) was really putting on the dog and being pretty rough on a couple of new guys with a lot less equipment and $ with which to work. One of these young guys (Jeremy) was shooting an old Savage 110 in 243 using PMC 80gr fmj factory ammo. His rig sported a Tasco 4X scope with cross hairs that would cover up a 2 inch dot at 100 meters. I had a lot of fun working with Jeremy these last few months. We rescoped his rifle with an old 4-14x Highcountry scope that I had laying around. We also worked up a load for his clunker(as the rich guy called it)using Hornady 65 gr Vmax bullets and H4895. Two saturdays ago Jeremy shot a 92 out of a possible 100. The rich guy forgot to take his target to the scorers table so I'm guessing the clunker outshot the rich guys pride and joy Kimber.

    The USBR shoots are done for the year so now it's time to get the 7mm-08 up and running in anticipation for next year. My Vanguard is the 20 inch carbine version and sports a 1 in 9.5 twist(I think). I have IMR 4320, both IMR and Hodgdon 4895, Benchmark, 3 cans of CFE223 and probably a few others. I have a thousand Hornady 120 gr Spire Points that I bought real cheap before round two of the ignorant dictatorship. I would really like to make these 120 grainers work if not I can go heavier. So all of you 7mm-08 enthusiasts jump on here and tell me what is gonna make my gun a shooter. Also I have noticed that my rifle sports a pressure point at the very end of the stock. Should I leave it or remove it. Thanks in advance! EKC

  2. #2

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    I'm not a fan of pressure points. I'd remove it and see what happens. You can always put in another. I fell under the spell of the 7x57 a long time ago, so haven't shot the 7-08 enough to help you on loads.

  3. #3
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    Let me start out by saying that the wealthy guy probably only has the friends that money can buy. My 7mm-08 experienced is limited to a Remington Model 700 Varmint Special. This particular rifle I bought new to shoot High Power Silhouette but hunted with it for about 8 months first. The bullets I experimented with were 100/120/140/162/168 gr's and powders were H322/IMR4064/W748/W760. It would shoot everything MOA or better except for some 140 PMC softpoint's, which shot 2"'s @ 100 yards. I put them on the shelf and a few years later loaded them up in a Rem 700 in 7Rem Mag for practice and they grouped under an inch going 200FPS faster, go figure. Same barrel length and twist, 1 in 9.25 I believe. My final rig was a H&S Precision Thumbhole stock, 2oz Trigger modified for single feed with the floor plate removed and a solid aluminum one piece floor plate expoxied in and Sierra 168 HPBT Match Bullets seated almost touching the lands, CCI BR Primers, Rem Cases (Uniformed) and W760 ~46gr's. One cartridge not to overlook is the 7mm BR. I had an XP100 that would shoot one hole groups with open sights and H322.

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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    I find light contoured or long barrels do better with up pressure on the front of the stock and shorter or heavier. I used to be like BrownBear and free float everything but with these lighter and lighter rifles now Iíve found some rifles just need a contact pad. If it has one now chances are good it needs it but when shooting for high score itís sure one of the things Iíd play with at some point.

     
    Canít help on the 7mm08 loads, havenít yet had the pleasure of loading for any. But I would try the VLDs, match or hunting, those boogers shot extremely well in ever 7mm Iíve put them in. Donít think Iíd hunt with them in a 7mm08 but I bet they would make a conga line poking holes in paper.
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    Just my thoughts, but I'd shoot it as is to establish a base line. If it punches tiny round clusters then I'd leave it alone, but if the groups display some stringing or simply aren't in the realm of what you hope to have I'd remove the bump and try it again. You can put a better pad back in place should you desire with 5 minute epoxy so it's not a deal breaker regardless. As for punching tiny groups in paper, I'd be looking for some 150 grain SMKs and RL 15, 4064 or W760. There are other combos for sure, but those are going to be cheap to assemble and near perfect for 100 meter/yard competition. I'd also recommend necking down Lapua .308 Winchester brass and using BR-2 primers to further refine the ammo.
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    My daughter vanguard in a 7-08 shoots 42.0gr h4895, fed 210, 120gr tsx bt, seated to ogive 2.805. Shoots very well...

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    I don't have any insight into loading for a 7mm-08, but I agree with 1Cor on the Lapua brass. Overkill for guys like me who just tinker around, but it is a dream to work with, and if I was shooting competitively, it would be a big head start I think. At the cost of 70 cents apiece, seems like its worth it, just bases on the number of reloads you get out of them, especially neck sizing.

  8. #8

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    I do have a new box of Lapua brass in 243. A friend brought them to me and asked me to reload them for coyote hunting. It was all that was available at Brownells/Sinclair at the time. I had some good once fired R*P brass so loaded him 100 of those for free so as to keep the Lapua brass. He was shooting them out of a DPMS and was just going to scatter them all over rural Iowa anyway. I'll neck them up.

    I had a friend call me last night and he said to go with a slow burning powder. He suggested to try the lightest load listed in any of my manuals using W760 or even to play with a light load of H4831sc. This is a guy that has done a lot of competitive shooting and has never lead me astray before. I have always been afraid of having detonation problems with light loads of slow burning powder. Thoughts on his theory?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    I have always been afraid of having detonation problems with light loads of slow burning powder. Thoughts on his theory?
    I'm with you to a large degree, but then again, you're loading 120's. I'm betting with the H4831sc at least, you're close to a full case even with lighter loads. Just can't get enough of it in a 7-08 case to reach max pressures. Dunno about the 760, even if I've loaded a lot of it over the years. It's always worked best at nearly full cases. If a "light" load is nearly filling the case, I wouldn't worry. But I'd be suspicious if it didn't. I'd also check and see what Winchester has to say about it, cuzz they do have words out there about their ball powders.

    Interesting concept. I'm sure your source is trying to fill that case under such light bullets.

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    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    EKC, you def should see a better score with the scope upgrade, pretty tough to shoot itty bitty groups at 100 with low power and heavy crosshairs.... I have no 7-08 experience so not any help there. I know I have always had good luck with 280 chambered rifles shooting 139/140 gr bullets so if the 120's don't work you might as well try something in that range?
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

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    With a 20" barrel and a bunch of 120's I'd probably use Varget over W760.

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    Varget is a better powder for the shorter barrel and will give you good results. I have 2 7-08's and both shoot good with varget. My kimber shoots 145 speer BT @ 2835 FPS w/ a 22" barrel w/ 1/2" MOA .. That gun will shoot clover leaf groups @ 100 yards & a 5 shoot group of 5" @ 500 yards. My rem LH shoots the bergers really well w/ varget and A max 162gr . I also good luck w/ H- 380 w/ this gun..

  13. #13

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    EKC, I picked up a new S2 in 223 from the local Sportsmans Warehouse and it's a good shooter. haven't had a chance to shoot it on a calm day yet but but it shot 5 shot 1/2 MOA (1") @ 212 yds on a breezy day with about 1/4" vertical spread. 4 of the shots were about .6 " apart. That was with 53 gr Vmax and Varget. I think it has .2 MOA potential.

    I sanded the pressure point down as I don't care for them. My thinking is they can lead to inconsistent pressure depending ambient and barrel temps. I think they're OK for short range hunting if you want to bring a 2 MOA rifle to 1 MOA give or take accuracy but the precision shooters float their barrel with action and shank of barrel bedded. You could try shooting a few groups with the pressure point and see how it does?

    Now if I were fixing this rifle up for competition I would order a B&C medalist for it and bed the action and barrel to about an inch in front of the lug to where the barrel starts to tapper and work up some loads with flat base Sierra's or Berger's for short range target shooting.

    I have never loaded for a 7-08 but if I did I would look at RL17 for velocity and hunting and Varget for pure precision. I just started using Varget this year in my 22-250 and 223 and it gives good velocity and accuracy. I am very happy with it.

    Good Luck!
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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    I do have a new box of Lapua brass in 243. A friend brought them to me and asked me to reload them for coyote hunting. It was all that was available at Brownells/Sinclair at the time. I had some good once fired R*P brass so loaded him 100 of those for free so as to keep the Lapua brass. He was shooting them out of a DPMS and was just going to scatter them all over rural Iowa anyway. I'll neck them up.

    I had a friend call me last night and he said to go with a slow burning powder. He suggested to try the lightest load listed in any of my manuals using W760 or even to play with a light load of H4831sc. This is a guy that has done a lot of competitive shooting and has never lead me astray before. I have always been afraid of having detonation problems with light loads of slow burning powder. Thoughts on his theory?
    my most accurate groups in my .223 and .375 have typically been with the starting or minimum loads listed in my manuals, just don't go below the minimum listed and you'll be fine.


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    You don't need no help, EKC:

    You got it covered.

    I use H414 / W760 for my 7x57s. It's a ball powder, so you need a magnum primer.

    Who was that rich guy? Not Smokie, I hope.

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    I d be interested to see how Alliant 2000-MR would work with the 7mm-08. It is a great powder in 308, especially with heavy bullets.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaRifleman View Post
    EKC, I picked up a new S2 in 223 from the local Sportsmans Warehouse and it's a good shooter. haven't had a chance to shoot it on a calm day yet but but it shot 5 shot 1/2 MOA (1") @ 212 yds on a breezy day with about 1/4" vertical spread. 4 of the shots were about .6 " apart. That was with 53 gr Vmax and Varget. I think it has .2 MOA potential.

    I sanded the pressure point down as I don't care for them. My thinking is they can lead to inconsistent pressure depending ambient and barrel temps. I think they're OK for short range hunting if you want to bring a 2 MOA rifle to 1 MOA give or take accuracy but the precision shooters float their barrel with action and shank of barrel bedded. You could try shooting a few groups with the pressure point and see how it does?

    Now if I were fixing this rifle up for competition I would order a B&C medalist for it and bed the action and barrel to about an inch in front of the lug to where the barrel starts to tapper and work up some loads with flat base Sierra's or Berger's for short range target shooting.

    I have never loaded for a 7-08 but if I did I would look at RL17 for velocity and hunting and Varget for pure precision. I just started using Varget this year in my 22-250 and 223 and it gives good velocity and accuracy. I am very happy with it.

    Good Luck!
    I have an S2 in 358 Win. that is minus the pressure point and I glassed it with Brownell's Accra Glass. It shoots real well at 100 yds. It wears a 1-4x VXIII so I haven't shot it any further.

    I want to shoot this 7mm-08 in the Sporter Class and I am pretty sure that means nothing but factory stock and factory bedding. I got that word of mouth and haven't actually read the rules myself. I need to do that!

    I'm pretty sure your in a different league with your shooting ability! I am more hunter than shooter but when nothing is in season to hunt then I might as well be shooting.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    You don't need no help, EKC:

    You got it covered.

    I use H414 / W760 for my 7x57s. It's a ball powder, so you need a magnum primer.

    Who was that rich guy? Not Smokie, I hope.

    Smitty of the North
    Thanks for the vote of confidence there Smitty of the way north!

    Smokey isn't the rich guy I was talking about. He is rich though, he has lots of guns, a good place to hunt, a perdy wife and she can cook....what else is there? Oh yeah he's a heck of a guy!(you can pay me later Smoke)

    I've heard tell that we are going to have a cast bullet class here-a-bouts next year. I picked up one of those Savage 99s in 300 Savage a while back and it hasn't been messed with...no holes drilled in it or anything. I may shoot some lead boolits through it and join up with that bunch of ornery old has beens and fling some lead and some insults and have fun doing it.

    Did you git my phone number? PM me with yours....we got some catching up to do!

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    I have an S2 in 358 Win. that is minus the pressure point and I glassed it with Brownell's Accra Glass. It shoots real well at 100 yds. It wears a 1-4x VXIII so I haven't shot it any further.

    I want to shoot this 7mm-08 in the Sporter Class and I am pretty sure that means nothing but factory stock and factory bedding. I got that word of mouth and haven't actually read the rules myself. I need to do that!

    I'm pretty sure your in a different league with your shooting ability! I am more hunter than shooter but when nothing is in season to hunt then I might as well be shooting.
    Oh, I doubt that I am a better shot than you EKC. I'm sure you would have a lot of fun with this 223. I'm thinking you have a lot more trigger time than me!

    I did not know that Vanguards were ever made in 358 Win? Is it a rebarrel?

    Keep us posted on your progress, very interested in how it turns out!
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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    Thanks for the vote of confidence there Smitty of the way north!

    Smokey isn't the rich guy I was talking about. He is rich though, he has lots of guns, a good place to hunt, a perdy wife and she can cook....what else is there? Oh yeah he's a heck of a guy!(you can pay me later Smoke)

    I've heard tell that we are going to have a cast bullet class here-a-bouts next year. I picked up one of those Savage 99s in 300 Savage a while back and it hasn't been messed with...no holes drilled in it or anything. I may shoot some lead boolits through it and join up with that bunch of ornery old has beens and fling some lead and some insults and have fun doing it.

    Did you git my phone number? PM me with yours....we got some catching up to do!
    OK, I got it, but I forgot I got it.

    I'll block some time and give you a holler.

    OR, I'll have my people get in touch with your people, and we can hit a few gun stores.

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