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Handload of the Week...

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  • Handload of the Week...

    Well, I go out to shoot at my favorite spot every Saturday. Usually this is a chronographing session as it was today. I took a few guns and some of the loads I have been working on all week, or in some cases, for several weeks.

    Today was the 38-55 model 1893 Marlin with 20" barrel, The Sako AV in 338 Wm with a 22.5" barrel, and the Dakota M76 in 404 Dakota caliber with a 23" barrel. All my guesses for load data were pretty good for all but one particular load for the 338 WM, was exceptional.

    I had been working with this and another 338 checking loads side by side and had found an excellent load for the 19.3" carbine and today tried that load in my 22.5" rifle. All shots went into one little hole and the chronograph read M: 2670 fps, E: 07 fps (extreme spread), and SD: 03 fps. This load was a 250 grain Kodiak bonded with 62.0 grains of RL-15 and a Federal 215 primer. The previous load with the same bullet and 61.0 grains of RL-15 was M:2608 fps, E: 39 fps, SD: 16 fps and the group was twice the size of the 62.0 grain load.

    Normally I would use RL-19 or H4350 with this caliber/bullet combo but was looking for better performance with the short barreled gun. I had started experimenting with the 250 grain bullets and the faster burning RL-15 powder with the carbine in hopes of getting better velocity and low velocity spread. This did prove to be a good combination but was even better with the 22.5" barreled rifle. I'm usually happy with an SD of less tahn 10 but this was a plus.

    Sometimes a blind squirrel finds an walnut!
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?

  • #2
    Amazing! That's what I'd call a good day!
    "The best defense is not to be there when the blow arrives!"


    • #3
      Murphy's .338 load

      Murphy, I have been using Reloader 19 in my 23" Win. with the same primers and Win. cases. Your velocity equals mine with alot less powder and a 1/2 " shorter brl. If I am correct that RL 15 is not very temperature sensitive. Makes me wonder what I would get. Guese I will have to try it if I ever burn up all my RL 19. Does it have less muzzle flash also ?


      • #4
        Dual use powder ?

        I too have had good luck with RL-19 in my .338 (Browning A-bolt) with 225 gr and 250 gr. bullets, but I haven't tried RL-15.

        I recently acquired a 375 and would like to handload for it. Ken Waters (Pet Loads) liked W-760 (accurate and velocities around 2600) with 300 gr bullets, and Sierra (loading info) liked RL-19 (accurate, although velocities were only in the 2400+ range).

        I know that, given the 375 expansion ratios, the cartridge will prefer medium burning powders, but bieng the frugal (read "cheap") person that I am, I try to use powders that can serve dual or multiple purposes. Will RL-15 fit that bill for both the 338 and 375? Any other suggestions? I'm starting out handloading with 300 gr bullets, but perhaps I should consider 275s for wider application, what do you think? Suggestions? (I also load for 270 WCF, 270 WSM, 300 WM and 45-70 if that helps.)

        Thank you.
        In God We Trust.


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