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Thread: Just starting out - powder selection?

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    Member jmg's Avatar
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    Default Just starting out - powder selection?

    About a month ago I put a post in another getting started thread that loading was something I wanted to get into. I recently picked up a Lee Classic Turret kit and a set of dies for my 30-06. I plan on adding a powder funnel, a set of calipers for measuring case length, and still need to get a case length gauge. I have not yet purchased any bullets, primers, or powder yet, but would like to here in the next couple days. I haven't purchased any brass yet either, although I think I have several brass around or at least factory rounds I can go shoot off to get some brass.

    I am planning on my first set of loads to be 200 grain Nosler partitions because I have a bison tag that expires in March that I would like to load for, and the hunt requires a 200 grain bullet. My question for all of you is how do you determine which powder you will start with? I have a Nosler reloading manual, and it lists RL19 as "most accurate powder tested," so I am assuming that would be a decent place to start, but thought I would see if someone else has a different take for whatever reason? I assume that over time I will learn the differences in powders, burn rates, etc., and be able to figure something like that out.

    After that set, I would like to work up some Barnes TTSX 165/168 grain rounds as well. RL19 is one of the listed powders to use on those, although it is not listed as "most accurate powder tested." My hope is I can come up with something with the RL19 I have left from the partitions that will be accurate, but maybe I need to go buy a second batch of powder that would be better?

    Thanks in advance for any advice. Can't wait to get started.
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    Member GrassLakeRon's Avatar
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    Imr 4350, 4895 and 4064 are great 30-06 powders.
    "Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure science"

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmg View Post
    About a month ago I put a post in another getting started thread that loading was something I wanted to get into. I recently picked up a Lee Classic Turret kit and a set of dies for my 30-06. I plan on adding a powder funnel, a set of calipers for measuring case length, and still need to get a case length gauge. I have not yet purchased any bullets, primers, or powder yet, but would like to here in the next couple days. I haven't purchased any brass yet either, although I think I have several brass around or at least factory rounds I can go shoot off to get some brass.

    I am planning on my first set of loads to be 200 grain Nosler partitions because I have a bison tag that expires in March that I would like to load for, and the hunt requires a 200 grain bullet. My question for all of you is how do you determine which powder you will start with? I have a Nosler reloading manual, and it lists RL19 as "most accurate powder tested," so I am assuming that would be a decent place to start, but thought I would see if someone else has a different take for whatever reason? I assume that over time I will learn the differences in powders, burn rates, etc., and be able to figure something like that out.

    After that set, I would like to work up some Barnes TTSX 165/168 grain rounds as well. RL19 is one of the listed powders to use on those, although it is not listed as "most accurate powder tested." My hope is I can come up with something with the RL19 I have left from the partitions that will be accurate, but maybe I need to go buy a second batch of powder that would be better?

    Thanks in advance for any advice. Can't wait to get started.
    If I were loading 200 grain bullets in the 30/06 Reloader 19 would be the place I'd start. You may not improve upon it, but I'd likely also give Reloader 22 and W760 or H414 a try having found success with these in the past.
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    Member Music Man's Avatar
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    This won't work in firefox only IE but it has all the load info you need.
    http://www.hodgdonreloading.com
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    Member Music Man's Avatar
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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Reloader 17 and H4350
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    Member jmg's Avatar
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    This is where I get a little confused on things. I am using the Nosler data directly from their website, which also corresponds to the manual I have for them. I found it here:

    http://www.nosler.com/nosler-load-da...6-springfield/


    When I look through that, I see IMR 4350 on the table for 200 grains, but no 4895 or 4064, as mentioned by Ron above:

    Quote Originally Posted by GrassLakeRon View Post
    Imr 4350, 4895 and 4064 are great 30-06 powders.
    I also don't see either of the powders mentioned by Stid

    Quote Originally Posted by stid2677 View Post
    Reloader 17 and H4350

    There is an IMR 4350, but I don't know enough about powders to know if that is significantly different than H4350?

    I think for now I am going to stick with what is on the table since I feel confident with going the listed powders. I'll give a batch of RL19 a try and see how it turns out. Thanks for everyone's assistance as I get going on this stuff.
    Never count your days, but rather, make all of your days count.

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    Member GrassLakeRon's Avatar
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    Check out:

    http://reloadersnest.com/query_bw.as...lletWeight=200

    When I loaded my 200 grain accubonds I used the info from this website. Imr 4350 was the powder. The 4064 was for your 165/168 loads. I find it to be very accurate.

    Something else to consider....they sell a paperback, spiral bound book for reloading the 30-06. It is only a few bucks and has all of the loads from the various manuals in it.

    http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Reloa.../dp/B000WZNLAY
    "Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure science"

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    There is an IMR 4350, but I don't know enough about powders to know if that is significantly different than H4350?I think for now I am going to stick with what is on the table since I feel confident with going the listed powders. I'll give a batch of RL19 a try and see how it turns out. Thanks for everyone's assistance as I get going on this stuff.


    You're are a smart person and well on your way to being a very successful and safe reloader!!! Don't over think it.



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    There are many powders that will work well for the 06 and 200gr Noslers. RL 19 is a good place to start. Decent loads for RL19 should be available from a several different sources. Just remember, starting loads are there for a very good reason, use them and work up. I might pick a different powder to start but I can't say my choice would be one bit better than RL19. Most of us that have loaded for a while have found powders that work really well in a certain application but you could take a round that I had loaded that shoots very good in my 30/06 and find it works poorly in yours. Factory recommendations are not much different as their accuracy load may not be the best for your rifle. It probably will be fairly good though. Often I will choose a powder because I have 4 or 5 lbs of it vs one that I only have a lb. or so. When going from a heavy bullet to a lighter one, usually a faster burn rate powder works better but not always. You probably won't find one powder to be "best" in both the 200gr and the 165gr but you could find one powder to be good enough for both. It's all a guessing game until you put some holes in paper. I have been loading for 50years and it's still a guessing game as to where to start.
    You have picked a good place to post questions as there is a wealth of experience and knowledge here. Also a great bunch that are willing to help. If you are in the Anchorage/Wasilla area I would be glad to have you over for a beginners loading secession. Not that you can't figure it out on your own but usually it's a much faster learning curve if you have someone standing by as you start figuring out how to set up dies and answering questions that you don't even know to ask until you get into it. I live in Chugiak. PM if interested in a mentor secession. Anyway good luck. Buck

  11. #11
    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    You already have a lot of great info to start you on your way. Reloading ammunition is one of the most satisfying hobbies you can do. The load development process will get you familiar with your rifle too.

    I'll warn you up front...it can be addicting! Soon, you may find yourself buying additional dies for other calibers and there are plenty of gadgets to buy to support your obsession. A chronograph being one of the best, both for estimating safe pressure and to determine the velocity of your load so you can learn the trajectory of your bullet and load for sight in and hunting purposes.

    Since your original post is about the 30-06, I load the 168 TTSX for 30-06 with 55.5 grains of H4350 which is Barnes' maximum load for that bullet. For best accuracy, clean your barrel thoroughly and start by seating the Barnes bullets 50 thousandths from the lands. Barnes has found that to be the distance from the lands they generally shoot the most accurately. If that isn't accurate enough, somewhere between 40 and 70 thousandths from the lands will find you a sweet spot (according to Barnes). I've been shooting Barnes bullets since the late 1990s and I've been able to get them to shoot accurately in all my rifles and I like their performance on game.

    In the 30-06 I used to develop the above load, H4350 edged out both IMR4350 and IMR4064 in accuracy. It's not the most accurate load in my other two 30-06s but it will work. So it is with reloading, you let your rifle tell you what it likes best.

  13. #13

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    I like H4831 for the heavier bullets when loading for the .30/06. Being a Hodgdon Extreme powder, it is advertised as being less temperature sensitive than other powders.

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    How accurate do you want these reloaded bullets to be and how far do you want to shoot them out to?

    A lot of reloading effort goes into changing small details in the loading process to fine tune a load to get to that magic one MOA or better accuracy. However, most loads really don't need to be bench rest accurate unless you are going to shoot them out a long ways (over 300 yards) or at little targets. Or, you are just the perfectionist type and like things to be as good as they can be.

    So, if you are looking to reproduce factory ammunition accuracy and you are not concerned with being the fastest and most accurate you can be, then finding a do all powder, primer, brass and bullet selection makes a lot of sense. You will not go at all wrong with a 30-06 spitting out 200g partitions at 1-2moa for the vast majority of hunting in AK.

    RL 19 works good with the 30-06, is popular and is in stock right now. So, go for it. If you want to fine tune stuff, then break out the wallet and spend a bunch more time and money which is not a bad thing either.

    If you like Nosler stuff, check out shooters proshop. They have a bunch of Nosler second run stuff that is cheap and work just fine.

    Have fun.

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