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Thread: RL-17 goes Zip, Zip, ZIP

  1. #1
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Default RL-17 goes Zip, Zip, ZIP

    Thought you guys might be interested in these numbers, and 'last few days' adjustment on the Reloading Bench.

    So, It's Sept 22, Nine days before my Elk Opener, and I'm thinking...........

    Since May 5th, Shortly after my Draw Tag Excitement hits, I have two loads completely developed for my .270wsm, 160gr Nosler Partitions, But are they Fast Enough? This will be a big animal for a .277 bullet, need every advantage available.

    I'm pretty focused on Accuracy, still trying to figure out why my .270wsm doesn't seem to grab the Velocities I see in the books for several loads I have been dialing in. Seems I am always a couple hundred Fps lower(????)

    I'll be asking you folks more about this,later, as winter drives me into the Reloading Shed and I have time to figure out what's up, but in late Sept., my hunt is nearly on and my two loads are accurate,

    Using Fed 215's, and at the Max Magazine length of 2.93 COAL,
    RL-19, 58.5 gr is hitting .62" at 100 yds for three shots, but only 2578fps
    RL-22, 60.5 gr has even produced a group of .23" once, but cruising at just 2682fps
    these should be fine, but,

    "I keep hearing more rave reviews for RL-17..... (the Wsm powder)" don't have time to hazmat ship any in at good price,
    Finally, I break down, run to the local shop and grab the 2lbs they have left at $39/lb.
    Have only 50 Nosler Partitions left to experiment with. None available at the local store.

    Having no numbers to work with besides H4350 book #'s I try 20 in progression Min to Max and Then.....? Some may remember my almost frantic, "Chrony No Read" thread ?? Yeah, that's when that happened, just when all I needed was to see the Speed Difference.....
    I get a few reads, and they are up into 2700's then "no reads" for the higher grain loads, Aaarrggh

    Now, It's Sept 27, have Rehabed the Chrony, four days left and 30 bullets left, I load twenty more, climbing high(won't tell where in relation to the H4350 Max as it is the Internet here but you can imagine) up in grains til I am close to Cartridge Capacity,

    "I'll watch tightly for Pressure signs and see what happens, and Lo and Behold,
    I find no pressure signs for loads up to 60 and 62 grains of RL-17 and my Chrony reads ON UP to 3058fps at 62 grains, still Fed 215, and 2.93 COL my Max Mag length.

    They're hitting 1.1" groups at 100yds, That'll Do for Bull Elk, I imagine....
    No time to mess around further, I load the last ten for 62gr then, even pull ten of the Hunting loads I had of RL-19 and 22 and reload them for 60 grs RL-17. which is flying at 2933fps

    So Here's the Results, It only took one, 160gr Nosler Partition, 62 grains RL-17, at 3056fps, to the base of the Neck, He never rose from His Bed,



    Needless to say, I am quite the Believer in RL-17
    How much Velocity had to do with a bullet to the neck(?), probably broke the spine, didn't have time to do an autopsy of any quality, maybe the impact (certainly increased by Velocity) at some 48 yards, was enough to break the spine even tho the bullet didn't actually impact bone?

    I hate to say I don't know for sure, but for some reason, I have to think that extra 350fps did help quite a bit.
    Why this powder produced that much more velocity? I'll be experimenting with that all winter, but that stuff is Impressive
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

  2. #2
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Interesting results! If I ever manage to get out of this god forsaken region of the globe I will have to give it a try with my 270wsm. I imagine I will have to take Vince out to dinner first since he has been storing all of my reloading equipment for MONTHS!

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    I've had very similar results with the 7mm WSM and the 300 WSM seems to like the powder also. My highest velocity in the 7mm WSM with 150 and 160 grain bullets was with RL-17. It isn't the powder for all bore sizes but is very versatile and can be used in many cartridges. Good stuff! Congrats on the nice bull..
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuJon View Post
    Interesting results! If I ever manage to get out of this god forsaken region of the globe I will have to give it a try with my 270wsm. I imagine I will have to take Vince out to dinner first since he has been storing all of my reloading equipment for MONTHS!
    storing? dude you did not get the memo? your out of stuff. please order more... thanks
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Member BrentC's Avatar
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    RL17 may not be for everyone, but I sure love to use it. Basically for me, if H4350 works well in a cartridge, RL17 works better. From 243 Win on up to 375 Ruger, RL17 has become one of my favorite propellants. Here is my latest victim of a 300 WSM loaded with RL17.

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    "I'll watch tightly for Pressure signs and see what happens, and Lo and Behold,
    I find no pressure signs for loads up to 60 and 62 grains of RL-17 and my Chrony reads ON UP to 3058fps at 62 grains, still Fed 215, and 2.93 COL my Max Mag length.
    all things being equal, Quickload predicts that load at 3065 fps, but at 76000 psi. Be careful

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    Thanks for the info Kodiac,
    I've been looking for a good powder for my 30-06 and I have several other guns to load for that are in the load data charts for that powder. Perfect. I wanted a good versatile powder that would work in all my guns so I don't have to have 10 different powders stored in my cabinet. Thanks again.
    I was hoping it would also work in my 300 Savage, but found no data for it yet.
    I can do the impossible right away. Be patient, miracles take me a bit longer.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    man i have been sitting on 3 lbs of this stuff. with little data to use it with... every one of the RL17 threads get my attention. looks like when i put the loading bench back together... its time to play with it...unfortunatly... it is getting packed up for now moving soon and no time to get down to business... Gawdknows i need to... was sorting ammo boxes the other day... and of the 600 rounds of .270 i had made... there are only 4 left... same as the .06 and 243. and .308...all nearly GONE! lots of brass to clean, I did not realize the kiddos blasted so much up..
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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  9. #9

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    Nice job there Kodiak! Your story reminds me of a moose I took way back in the early '80's, near Seward. I had a model 700 BDL in 270 Win, with a Leupold 2-7X scope. My load was the Nosler 150gr partition, with a hefty charge of H4831 yielding around 2800fps. Anyway, I saw this nice yearling bull moose, at about 120 yards distant. I centered the crosshairs on his neck, and pulled the trigger. Talk about INSTANT knockout! Down he went, not taking a single step. After we had butchered all the meat, we had a look at the neck, just out of curiousity. That little slug had hit a vertabrae squarely in the center, creating a little hole going in. On the other side of the vertabrae was a larger hole going out. The vertabrae was not shattered into pieces...still one piece, but it had a hole completely through it. We found the slug lodged against the skin on the far side. Needless to say, I've been fond of Nosler partitions ever since...

    Marshall/Ak
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  10. #10
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Default Even the Toughest knees Buckle to Nosler and RL-17

    Quote Originally Posted by Wildalaska View Post
    all things being equal, Quickload predicts that load at 3065 fps, but at 76000 psi. Be careful
    I heard Ya there, Wild, so I bumped down to the 60 gr load I had worked up (with great accuracy) and 2933fps of Velocity for my Mt. Goat hunt a month later,

    Having heard much about the Toughness of Mt. Goats I still wanted as large a bullet as I could send down my .270wsm so using 160gr Nosler partitions with a bit of caution (2grains less than the Elk load) and still some serious speed,

    I launched one at 81yards into this Old Billy, (six yrs toughened on the Mtn. life)
    I couldn't register the impact on the body as usually is visible to some degree on other animals. I think it was because of the thick coat and long hair absorbing the vibration but,

    This old boy's "knees just buckled" and he dropped like a brick on the first shot that hit just above and behind the heart. It didn't pass through but I couldn't find the bullet either (Darn, I was in a tough place skinning and gutting so couldn't search very well) Did not hit bone anywhere I'm sure.

    Unfortunately I didn't totally trust that one shot and let another rip, tho he was definitely "Down and Out."
    With that second shot impact, he then kicked one more time and proceeded to roll forever down the mountain. "Whoops," is a serious understatement.

    That Partition bullet, and I think Especially the Velocity of Impact just put a stop to him the first time, Right now.

    Again, I am quite the believer in RL-17 and the Velocity that can be achieved in the Short Mags. I have the Accuracy dialed on several bullets but am going to be working on higher Velocities in the future as that appears to Really makes a Difference in the Slam Effect.




    and then as the result of "too much thinking, not enough waiting," tho I watched him for about three minutes laying high up on a nice bed in the grass, hardly moving. I could'nt Just Believe he was So Finished with one shot so,......
    Here's my "revised Killsite and accompanying Recovery Chute."

    It wasn't as bad as it looks tho, just hard on My Old Knees

    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    Member marshall's Avatar
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    Good job, great pics. Congrats and the joy of hunting with your own load in the greatest place on earth.

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    I heard Ya there, Wild, so I bumped down to the 60 gr load I had worked up (with great accuracy) and 2933fps of Velocity for my Mt. Goat hunt a month later,
    QL predicts 3020 fps with pressure of 69K so you are in the ballpark

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    Man, I might need to give these a whirl in my 25-06 and 270WSM. That is some great speed. Scotty
    Semper Fi

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    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Yeah, It's for real,

    the stuff was designed for Short Mags I guess, so not sure what you'll see with the 25-06, but I am confident you will be happy with what you see for your .270wsm

    I was having trouble achieving Book Velocities for mine until I got a pound of 17, may be sticking with it as my "Go To" powder for a while
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    I am going to try and grab a lb of it this week for the 25-06. Hoping it works well, but it should as 4350's are good powders in the 25-06 also, so RL17 should be even better. Scotty
    Semper Fi

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    Brent what powder load did you use and what was your bullet type 180 E-tip C.O.L thanks Rockanice

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    Quote Originally Posted by beretzs View Post
    I am going to try and grab a lb of it this week for the 25-06. Hoping it works well, but it should as 4350's are good powders in the 25-06 also, so RL17 should be even better. Scotty
    hey let me know how it goes.. i have one i need to work a load up for too!
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Will do. I am going to grab a lb today in order to try it out. Still waiting on a new resizing die, but it should be in today also. Scotty
    Semper Fi

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