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Thread: Coal

  1. #1
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    Default Coal

    Got an excited call a little over a month ago from the son-in-law. He was all pumped about the new Barnes MRX bullet. I bought a box of 185 gr. MRX in .338 WM, read the enclosed instructions, loaded 20 Remington cases with 69 gr. of IMR 3841 and CCI Magnum primers. That's considerably less than max. Since I didn't have the rifle, I used a COAL of 3.270". To my surprise, he got MOA accuracy. Confident with this, when Bullwinkle came into eyeball range a 50 yds., son-in-law put a round through his lungs. The bullet went through a rib and left a perfect cross on the gut side of the rib. Impressive expansion. Never found the spent bullet.

    This load needs some more development and I'm nervous about the COAL. I'll get my hands on the rifle as soon as I can and get a better preliminary COAL. In the meantime, has anyone out there come up with a COAL for the MRX in .338 WM?
    Ken

  2. #2
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    SwampView AK, Overlooking Mt. Mckinley and Points Beyond.
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    Default

    Ak39er:
    I'm surprised that someone hasn't responded to you by now, and Iím not sure if you know what Iím gonna try to tell you or not.

    I'll just say that establishing a COAL should only be done with the rifle you load for in hand.

    When you handload, the bullet should not touch the lands. (Unless of course, you planned it that way, and developed the load accordingly etc.) (That would not be a good practice for a hunting load, so it doesn't apply here.)

    If it did, (touch) because the bullet was seated way too long, the bullet could be pushed back into the case on chambering, and could conceivably create some dangerous pressure.

    Many think that if you use the COAL shown in a loading manual you will be OK, but I've found that isn't always the case. Remember, that the bullet distance from the lands, varies not just with, the rounds OAL, but also with the curvature of the bullet's Ogive, and different bullets have different ogives. I like to be .030 from the lands.


    IME, Factory Loads, are short enough to work safely in any rifle, but you donít need to do it that way.

    When you get the rifle, you can determine what COAL you want, or need to use based on the Magazine length, and/or the chambers throat length.

    I hope that helps, and if I misunderstood, and you already knew this, I hope I didn't bug you too much making sure.
    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  3. #3
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    Sep 2007
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    Default Coal

    Smitty I appreciate and agree with your reply.

    I came up with the preliminary COAL by measuring a similar factory cartridge with a different ogive and was confident the bullet was seated back from the lands. This was admittedly poor practice and done due to time constraints. I considered it safe at the time and the spent primers and brass show no signs of excess pressure.

    My original post was ment to tell a little story and ask what others had come up with for a COAL for the Barnes 185 gr. MRX bullet in .338 WM. Because it's newer than the TSX there's a dearth of info about it.

    When I get the rifle in hand and my smoke pot fired up, I"ll come up with the real deal that won't make me nervous.
    Ken

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