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Thread: 338 failsafe load help please

  1. #1
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    Default 338 failsafe load help please

    I have been trying to find some published load data on the .338WM 230gr Failsafe bullet. Due to the fact that these bullets have been discontinued the newer reloading manuals (at least the ones that I have found lately) don't have any listing for this bullet. I found some information on Steve's reloading pages and Loaddata.com but I have conficting load info from the two. Steve's recomendations are not for coated bullets. Being new to reloading I didn't know there was a difference. Loaddata recomends RL22 for a rifle with a 22in barrel and Steve's recomends RL19 but did not test the load on shorter than 24in barrels. Steve's recomends Remington's 9 1/2m primer and 65-72 grains of RL19. I'm getting to the point of dropping my beloved Failsafes and going to something currently available but I just gotta give it one more try! Does anyone have any pet loads or an old manual lying around that lists this bullet? Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
    John
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    Quote Originally Posted by JC in AK View Post
    Loaddata recomends RL22 for a rifle with a 22in barrel and Steve's recomends RL19 but did not test the load on shorter than 24in barrels. Steve's recomends Remington's 9 1/2m primer and 65-72 grains of RL19.
    When you are loading for a shorter barrel than your data supports you are on the safe side of the fence. A shorter barrel will most likely but not always give a little less velocity and perhaps a bit of muzzle flash if the powder was optimized for the longer barrel.

    Try the RL-19, it's a faster burn than the RL-22 and may work just fine. You mentioned he tested it with a 24" tube so pressure will be less with your 22". When the bullet leaves the crown pressure drops and yours will leave sooner than his.

    You didn't mention components. Winchester brass will be safe and so will Federal 215's and CCI250's. Federal brass will have less capacity, more pressure. Winchester primers will be hotter, more pressure.

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    I think Lee's Modern Reloading lists data for the 230 gr failsafe. I don't have mine with me. I'll get back in a couple of days.

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    Thanks for all the help so far!

    Marshall, I planned on using the Nosler custom brass but was unsure of the primer. I read that the Remington 9 1/2m was on the lower side but helped with overall accuracy with no effect on velocity due to a more consistant burn with these heavy powder charges. Kinda the opposite of what I would have thought but like I said I'm new to reloading.

    YT, Thanks for the help as well! Looking forward to see what Lee's has to say. Any idea where I could find an older reloading manual?

    Thanks again!
    John
    Life is too important to be taken seriously.

    Chinese proverb

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    JC, did you figure something out? What powders do you have on hand or available?

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    YT,
    Not yet, still trying to find a manual with the Fail Safe bullets in it. I think the Load Data book for 338WM would have it in it but I haven't been able to locate one around Anchorage yet. Didn't have any info in the Nosler 6 book and the internet is scetchy. Seems no one wants to release anything unless they are getting paid for it and then there are no guarantee that Fail Safes are even mentioned. Steve's reloading pages were the only ones with info for a 230gr bullet but not a Fail Safe Coated bullet. I thought the forum would come alive with loads but I guess not. Seems that everyone has moved on and if Winchester releases its XP3 round in 338WM I will give those a try.
    I can get most any powder here in Anchorage and plan on using RL19 for now. I'm not sure on the primer yet. I haven't seen the Remington 9 1/2m primers but have not searched too much yet. I know Sportsman's has CCI and I think Federal primers too. I have only been able to get 65 bullets and have 1 1/2 boxes of factory loaded ammo left. I'm a little skeptical on reloading and don't want to damage my rifle but my buddy is gonna give me some assistance and he has been hand loading for his 460 Weatherby for quite some time with no issues so we'll see.

    Thanks for the post!
    John
    Life is too important to be taken seriously.

    Chinese proverb

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    Just use the 225 grain data and "ease" up - 215's are supposed to be the hottest primer, the "M" (match) have always worked best for me - Use Nosler custom or Norma (same) the added pressure just means you will find pressure with less powder but I used Norma cases and 230 FS only until I ran out of them and it was a "killer" combo - where are you finding 230 FS anyway ?? - 225 Barnes TSX will work similarly
    - imr 4350 is also sometimes a good powder for that combo too but RL 19 always sufficed for me

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    I got a few boxes from a forum member that loaded a few and his rifle just didn't like them. How much RL-19 did you like to use? I do plan on using the Nosler custom brass and am still interested in the Remington primers though if I can't find them then CCI or Federal may have to do. Know anyone that uses the Remington 9 1/2M primer?
    Life is too important to be taken seriously.

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    For what it's worth, good manuals are worth their weight in gold. Modern Reloading lists 67.0 gr. of Reloder 19 as start load, with 72.0 gr. compressed for never exceed load, for your 230 gr. Failsafe. The hottest load listed is A-XMR-4350 at 63.0 gr. start and 70.0 gr. compressed for never exceed. Large Rifle primers for both loads. Failsafes are among the best killing bullets I have shot.

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    Thanks YT!
    You are right about the manuals though it's hard to find a new manual with this old load information. The Fail Safes were ahead of their time and IMO are still one of if not the best. They have the best of both worlds with a solid copper section and lead rear core. Better BC and sectional density than the Barnes bullets. The new XP3 from Winchester has got me drooling though Winchester has not made on in 338 cal yet. I just don't get it. They made a 200gr XP3 bullet for the 325wsm and then stopped there.

    Your load for the Fail Safes sounds great and I will give it a try soon. What load did your rifle shoot the best? I understand all rifles are different, just trying to get a feel for this?

    Thanks again!
    John
    Life is too important to be taken seriously.

    Chinese proverb

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