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Thread: 350 Rem Mag Ruger M-77MKII getting better

  1. #1
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default 350 Rem Mag Ruger M-77MKII getting better

    As some of you will remember my last thread talked about the rather huge groups that rifle was firing when it came out of the box. 6 to 8 inches being the norm and a few select handloads going down to 3 inches.

    After:
    1. Recrowning the muzzle
    2. Free floating the barrel except mild pressure at the very end of the barrel channel.
    3. Polishing the feed ramp so it would stop deforming the ammo tips.
    4. Re-enforcing the recoil lug area with fiberglass bedding.
    5. Re-enforcing the fore stock area with epoxy.

    The average size of the groups dropped to 1.0 inches using the same loads.
    With a couple tweaked handloads i was also able to obtain a few .50 to .75 inch groups.

    I was amazed at just how well RL-15 powder did with this cartridge using 220 to 225 grain bullets. High velocities, no high pressure signs and very good accuracy.

    One load using 63.0 grains of RL-15, Remington brass, a Winchester mag primer, and a 220 grain Speer bullet loaded to 2.80 COL. Consistantly obtained 2,840 fps and fired the two smallest groups.
    It was very clean burning.

    I was rather surprised, but I have seen this load on Whelen Browns 35 caliber site and also at the Reloaders Nest site.
    The velocities were, 2,837- 2,841,-2,859- 2,837- 2,843- 2,840-2,839 - 2,821-and another 2,859.
    I used a light roll crimp. This brass was once fired and I resized it about 85 to 90%.

    Other loads I tried yesterday with eitehr Speer 220s or Sierra 225 grain boat tails:

    60.0 grains BLC-2 averaged 2,560 fps. Very dirty.
    62.0 grains BLC-2 averaged 2,700 fps super dirty and was blowing primers.


    56.0 grains IMR 3031, averaged 2,682 fps. clean, 1.25 inch group.

    58.0 grains H-4895 with Sierra 225 grain. averaged 2,738fps, 1.00 inch group.

    58.0 grains H-4895 with Speer 220 flat base, averaged 2,675fps, 1.75 to 2.0 inch group.

    The last two loads were exactly the same except the bullet. Check out how much faster the Sierra Boat tail was going.

    I will try to get some photos up...
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  2. #2
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Group Pics added:
    These were the best groups before I re-crowned the barrel and free floated the barrel channel.
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    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    This is what happened with the same loads after I re-worked the muzzle crown to 11 degrees and relieved the pressure along the barrel channel. Plus some epoxy re-enforcement behind the recoil lug area. I even used another shooter on one group to make sure it was not just me.
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  4. #4
    Member Matt's Avatar
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    Those are much better groups! You had an accurate rifle after all with some tweaking. And that was with the 220-grain Speer bullet? You going to hunt bear with that setup this spring?

  5. #5
    Member alaska bush man's Avatar
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    Thumbs up RL15 in 350 mag

    61/ReL 15
    225 Nosler Ballistic Tip
    slight taper crimp
    2.895 COAL
    to fit Ruger mag
    2649fps
    ----ft.lbs
    WLRM, virgin RP brass, approx .170" to lands, some ogive down in case mouth
    OK pressures
    60/ReL 15/2640fps,


    64/ReL 15
    225 Nosler Ballistic Tip
    no crimp
    3.030 COAL
    cut tip back to 2.895 to fit Ruger mag
    2795fps,
    ----ft.lbs
    near top load
    significant case head expansion (.511/.531) but no ejector slot imprint yet
    WLRM, virgin RP brass, approx. .060" to lands, all of case neck holding bullet bearing surface
    60/ReL 15/2626fps
    61/ReL 15/2677fps
    62/ReL 15/2726fps
    63/ReL 15/2713fps


    63/ReL 15
    225 Nosler Partition
    no crimp
    2.895 COAL
    perfect fit in Ruger mag
    approx .065" to lands
    2728fps
    ----ft.lbs
    WLRM, virgin RP brass, OK pressures Worked up from 60/ReL 15/2623, 61/ReL 15/2623, 62/ReL 15/2670


    64/ReL 15
    225 Sierra BT
    no crimp
    2.880 COAL
    VERY close to lands (approx .015")
    2710fps
    ----ft.lbs
    WLRM, RP brass, quite mild pressure still - little case head expansion (.5085/.5293) pressures, 62/2693, 63/ReL 15/2728


    62/ReL 15
    250 Speer Hot Core
    no crimp
    2.895 COAL
    to fit Ruger mag but won't feed (???)
    2633fps,
    ----ft.lbs
    virgin brass swelled to .5105" on 1st firing (from .505")
    near top load but no ejector slot imprint yet
    WLRM, virgin RP brass,
    60/ReL 15/2514fps
    61/ReL 15/2562fps
    2nd firing at 62.5/ReL 15/2621fps, 2652fps, 2656fps and expanded to .5113/.5315


    65/ReL 15
    200 Hornady Spire Point
    no crimp
    2.840 COAL
    approx .020" to lands
    2702fps,
    ----ft.lbs
    mild pressures
    [dipped 62/ReL15/ gave 2624,2654, and 1.875" 100 yd. 3 shot group with no case head expansion]
    WLRM, RP brass,

  6. #6

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    Everybody should have an 11 degree target crown cutter and pilots in their tool box. I had a 222 whose accuracy went south last year. A thorough cleaning helped, but recutting the crown brought it all the way back and was a lot cheaper than a new barrel.

    Glad to see you got the rifle to shoot. I think it's about time you got a rifle that will shoot right out of the box.

  7. #7
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I am glad too. After all my mods, I am not sure I could have sold it.

    1. Front sight base added
    2. Fiber optic front sight dot
    3, Warne quick release scope mounts.
    4. NEC type quick release rear peep sight.
    5. Coated with hi temp ceramic paint.
    6. Polished feed ramp and rails.
    7. New crown to 11 degrees.
    8. Re-enforced forearm interior.
    9. Re-enforced recoil lug area.
    10. Floated barrel channel
    11. Installed second side mount sling for carrying like a pack while climbing, snow-shoeing.
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  8. #8
    Member Matt's Avatar
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    Very nice rifle.

  9. #9

    Default Nice rifle

    I just picked up a Remington model 660 in 350 rem mag at a gun show. This caliber is going to force me to learn to reload. I appreciate all the information you are posting. It looks like you have a nice finished project. What is your rifles finished weight? Barrel Length?

  10. #10
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    22 inch barrel. Everything, including the emergency peep site came out to exactly 8.0 pounds. Now that I have added some fiberglass, it may be more. I need to find a digital scale. My fish scale still says 8 pounds.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    This is what happened with the same loads after I re-worked the muzzle crown to 11 degrees and relieved the pressure along the barrel channel. Plus some epoxy re-enforcement behind the recoil lug area. I even used another shooter on one group to make sure it was not just me.
    Alright, I have been out of town and just saw this thread tonight and I think that is just out standing and I am glad you got that rifle shooting good. Great
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
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  12. #12
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    Default Ruger Recoil Lug

    Float Pilot, how hard was this with the Ruger recoil lug. I've been contemplating doing this to my Ruger 338. Was it hard keeping the bedding compound out of the screw hole?

    I was also thinking if I were to bed the recoil lug I might do the same with the rear tang area. Anyone think thats a good idea? I bought a Boyds JRS laminate for my ruger and I just want the action to fit a little better.

    Thanks, schmidty

    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    4. Re-enforcing the recoil lug area with fiberglass bedding.

  13. #13
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    On my plastic tupperware Ruger stock, there was a void behind the angle screw recoil lug cut-out. It went almost back to the magazine box area. I can't figure out why they molded it that way, unless they just make the same size stock for every size action and just move a couple things around to change the recoil lug position for the shorter actions.

    I filled that with epoxy mixed with steel wool strands. Before that there was a fairly thin wall of flexible plastic taking all of the recoil.
    It seems to work.

    Of course now that I have a lightweight 350 Rem Mag that shoots straight, my back blew out and I just had surgery a week or so ago. I wonder how rifles with a snappy recoil will affect me now. It would really stink not being able to shoot my 300 Win Mag, 350 Rem Mag, and warm 45-70 carbine loads.
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    I hope all those guns aren't that bad out of the box!! I just ordered two for a couple of the guys on my boat b/c my supplier has them on sale for $359.00 They're even the old stainless style before they went to the matte finish. I prefer those over the new stainless finish. They're much more corrosion/rust proof. I just hope they can group decent!

  15. #15
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Mine is the straight stainless type. I painted it with bake on ceramic engine block paint.
    I'll bet that there is going to be all sorts of variations in perfomance.

    Mine shoots just fine now...
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  16. #16
    Member Matt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ring King View Post
    I hope all those guns aren't that bad out of the box!! I just ordered two for a couple of the guys on my boat b/c my supplier has them on sale for $359.00 They're even the old stainless style before they went to the matte finish. I prefer those over the new stainless finish. They're much more corrosion/rust proof. I just hope they can group decent!
    Those would be good rifles for the deer hunting around your parts. How was the snowfall down that way this winter?

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    We got some snow, but it wasn't bad at all. No where near what we had last year. That's a good thing too since the deer were scarce this past season. Hopefully they'll come back strong this season!

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