Last June I started a thread called "First timer in handloading forum", in which I asked some basic questions about cost and equipment for a newbie to start handloading. Many of you regulars to this forum gave some good advice, thanks.
Since then, I've accumulated most of the equipment I need and read through the Nosler and Speer reloading manuals as well as other sources. I know a heck-of-a lot more now then I did 6 moths ago and I think I'm about ready to start planning out my first load.
I understand the basic concept and reasoning behind "working up a load", to check for signs of over preasure while you increase your charges and to find the most accurate for your gun. I guess where I've been scratching my noggin is just how many rounds I should make up of the lower charges; the charges in which I'm only using for safety, not looking for accuracy. Here's an example.
According to the reloading manual for the bullet I plan to use, the start charge for the .280-Rem 140-grain bullet using RL-19 is 53.0 gr. The max charge is 57.0 gr. I probably will not reach my velocity goal for this rifle/bullet until I'm at around 55-gr, according to the manual data. Therefore, the loads I make up from 53.0-gr to 55.0 grains while "working up" will only be used for safety, not checking for accuracy. So the basic question I have is, how many of those lower charges do I need to make? If there is going to be over-pressure, how many rounds does it take for there to be signs? Will I see it the first time fired, or sometimes can it take several before it's obvious and I should load several to make sure? Safety first, but component conservation in today's economy is important also!
Sorry it took 4 paragraphs to ask how many firings does it take to determine if you have an un-safe load. Any discussion on "working up a load" for the newbie would be appreciated.