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.308 varmit load
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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Eremius
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:26 am    Post subject: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

I am toying with the idea of picking up a .308 for longer range varmint hunting. Before I commit to anything I have a couple of questions. I am hoping someone has had some experience and can shed some light.

I am thinking about picking up an AR-10.

Question 1: How well do .308's in general and AR-10's specifically handle lighter bullets. It seems to me that anything over 150gr is overkill. I would really appreciate any comments on 125gr - 150gr performance.

Question 2: I currently use Varget for my .22-250 and would prefer to stick with one powder as long as there is no penalty for it. Anybody use(d) it? What were/are your results?

Any additional comments would also be welcome. Thanks!
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Eremius
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:28 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Additional:

I use and like the performance of Nosler Ballistic Tips on my .22-250, do they work as well on a .308?
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RePete
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 10:50 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Using 125/130gr bullets in the AR10 may give you feeding problems.

I'd stick with a bolt for the light bullets.

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inthedark
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:09 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Smile I have used 110gr speer spire point in my 308 with 43.0gr of IMR3031 powder. That load combination works outstanding in my Rem 788. Cool
I use 165gr Nosler Ballistic Tips with 39.3 gr of IMR3031, Win LR primers and Win cases for my hunting loads for anything from antelope to moose.

The 308 chambering performs very good with bullets in the 150-190gr range and this calibre has won a LOT of 1000 yard matches.
Personnaly I like a short action as opposed to long action. The 308 and 30-06 are vertually the same as far as performance is concerned.

You cannot go wrong in my opinion with the Nosler Ballistic Tip line of bullets. They have never failed to perform great for me and I have never lost an animal nor had an animal move any further than 40-50 yards after being hit.

I also like the Nosler Partitions in 165gr and the Sierra 165, 180 grain spitzer BTs. But my favorite is 165gr Nosler Ballistic Tips.

I have not personally had very good results with Varget when using the heavier bullets like .30cal 150gr and up in my 308Win. Sad Below 150gr Sierra does not list any loads for Varget for 308Win.

For myself and my buddies, Varget is our go to powder for 22cal, 24 cal, and for the 300Win Mag when using the 110, 125 and 160gr bullets and below. Party

I think that it has to do with the amount of powder in the case. It is odd that it works well in the 300WM and not in 308Win or 30-06Rem. Shocked
Maybe some of the other guys will be able toshed some light on this for both of us. Enjoy and I hope that my comments have helped you. Wink Smile

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dhc4ever
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:21 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

A couple of comments.
Is an AR 10 capable of sub MOA performance?
Whats your definition of "long range"
Which varmints are you planning on?
Varget aka ADI AR 2208 seems well suited to .308, I'm currently in the process of working up a load for Sierra 150grn gamekings, playing around with a few loads that are .75 to 1 inch.
The Federal factory rounds I have in 125 grn group aound 1.4 to 2.0 inches, I havent yet decided to go and develope a light bullet load for the .308, I have a 25/06 that fills that slot pretty well and has a lot flatter tracjectory.

Personally I feel a bolt action would be better suited to long range sniping than an AR albeit not as much fun. And I'd probably be looking at something with a higher muzzle velocity and a flatter tragectory.

Hogdens reloading site;
data.hodgdon.com/main_menu.asp

ADI reloading site;
www.adi-powders.com.au...arning.asp

The loads for .308 will be similar as ADI manufacture varget as ar2208 for hogdon.

Choices,choices, have fun deciding
Cheers

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Eremius
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:03 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

dhc4ever wrote:
A couple of comments.
Is an AR 10 capable of sub MOA performance?
I'm unsure... Although I am familiar with concepts of shooting, some terms are unclear to me. MOA usage falls in this category.
Quote::
Whats your definition of "long range"
I would think 300-ish yards
Quote::
Which varmints are you planning on?
Prairie dogs

Quote::
Personally I feel a bolt action would be better suited to long range sniping than an AR albeit not as much fun. And I'd probably be looking at something with a higher muzzle velocity and a flatter tragectory.
Well, I am planning on taking my .22-250 as well. (Rem 700) Maybe I should consider an AR-15 instead of an AR-10 for shorter range work (sub-100 yards) and use the .22-250 for any longer range stuff.

Quote::
Choices,choices, have fun deciding
Cheers

Definitely many choices. Cheers!
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dhc4ever
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:34 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

MOA = Minute of angle which roughly equates to 1 inch at 100 yards.
Prairie dogs arent a big animal and the more accurate the rifle and the nut behind the butt the better.
22-250 would be well suited to 300 yrd varminting on pdogs and with targets this size and at these ranges a .308 is a bit superflourous in this application.
Thats not to say you shouldnt get an AR in .308 ( I would if I could, but the laws here suck) I'm sure there are hogs around that require a bit of AR medicine.

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MacD
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:30 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Not familiar with the AR-10. What is its twist? My Marlin 7XS has given me sub-moa with 168 grain A-Max ahead of 43.5 grains of Varget. Try as I might the 1-12 twist just won't give me accuracy with 190 grain pills no matter what I have tried. The range is under 3 feet of snow just now so I am going to try again in the spring, at least until I use up the remaining bullets. I have some 150 SST's ordered and am going to try some IMR 8208 XBR powder. It is at 85 on the Hodgdon burn rate table compared to 99 for Varget. Hodgdon lists loads from 110-200 grains in .308 for this powder.

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English Mike
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:31 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Stick with the 22-250 matey.
All the .308 will do is cost you more in powder & bullets with no advantage at ranges out to 400yds & more.
If you want to shoot past there, then look at the 6mm Norma BR which will take VLD bullets out to 1,000yds..
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fnuser
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 6:36 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

welcome to the "nut"

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chambered221
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:11 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Nothing wrong with wanting a AR10...... but your 22-250 is more than adequate for PD's at 300 yards !!!

If you really want a second gun for PD's think smaller.......222 or 223, or better yet a 221FireBall or one of it's offspring's !!! (.17Fireball, .20VarTarg)

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Vince
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:48 pm    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

I concur totally with everything said above Eremius.

A .308 really would be wasted money for the reasons English Mike brings up.

The 22.250 will do a superb job...and your idea of an AR15...in .223 Rem... is a great idea as well mate. Have a prowl through the Reloading Ammunition and the Gun and Firearm Discussions and you will find more info than you can handle on this great gun and round. There are many here that love them and have developed their rifles and ammo almost to the nth degree.

Cheers, Vince

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SingleShotLover
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:18 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

And the elephant in the room...from what I hear of prairie dog shooting, you are looking at shooting an awful lot of ammo over a short period of time. It doesn't take too long for even a .22-250 (let alone a .308) to start making the shoulder sore at those rates. That's why so many people use .223 or .204 as their rounds of choice. At 300 yards your .22-250 will do just fine...even out to 400 yards or so, assuming accuracy potential and ability to judge distance. It has plenty of power for your needs.

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RePete
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:38 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

SingleShotLover wrote:
And the elephant in the room...from what I hear of prairie dog shooting, you are looking at shooting an awful lot of ammo over a short period of time. It doesn't take too long for even a .22-250 (let alone a .308) to start making the shoulder sore at those rates. That's why so many people use .223 or .204 as their rounds of choice. At 300 yards your .22-250 will do just fine...even out to 400 yards or so, assuming accuracy potential and ability to judge distance. It has plenty of power for your needs.

The main limiting factors here are your ability at distance and wind plus the ablility to read it.

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Eremius
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 11:03 am    Post subject: Re: .308 varmit load Reply with quote

Thank you all for your input. I had started leaning away from the AR-10 and toward an AR-15 and you guys have echoed a lot of the same thoughts I was having.

As an additional bonus, .223 ammo is much less expensive both to buy and to reload.
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