308 Win. reloading
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#1: 308 Win. reloading Author: shadowdrak PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 4:11 pm
Hey there guys, new guy here. I've been into archery for the past several years and have decided to get back into the riflery game. I recently purchased a Rem. 700 PSS in 308 and want to start reloading my own ammo. This is something I haven't done before and I am not too familiar with everything that I will need. What are all the supplies that I will be needing? I'm sure I can also get a book to help me get started on it. Another question I have from doing research on the net is that Rem. has a longer throat in the chamber to prevent gas build-up from people creating too long a round in the chamber and something like "skipping"? when fired? What would be the proper total length of the cartridges for the Rem. action? Thanks for any help you guys can provide.

#2: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: hunterjoe21Location: Billings, Montana PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 4:28 pm
Start with a good reloading manual. I have a few, and believe the Lyman 48th edition would be a good starting point.

Purchasing a good manual up front will help YOU decide what YOU need, and what YOU want in the future.

I wish I would have asked some questions before I started, it would have saved me some time and money, so don't be afraid to ask.....

#3: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: WickyLocation: Alice Springs, Australia PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 4:36 pm
First - reloading manual or two ( Hornady, Speer, Sierra) then projectiles, powder, primers and unprimed cases! Then I would suggest a single stage 'O' frame press - RCBS, Hornady, there are plenty to choose from.
A set of dies with the correct shell holder - a no. 2 RCBS from memory. Dies can be a two die set - Full length sizer and seating die - or you can get a three die set which includes a neck sizer.
Gas build up - pressure - should not be a problem if you use the loads in the manuals and make sure your projectile is not pushed into the rifling. Some cartridges have freebore which is a length of unrifled chamber - think long throat - before the rifling starts. This helps reduce pressure somewhat with warmer loads. I suggest you do a bit of reading on the Weatherby Cartridges as they are freebored, it will probably be explained better than I can!!
There is no real correct overall length for the cartridge but initially start with the same length as a factory round. Also your reloading manuals will probably have a suggested OAL to get you started. Remember your magazine may dictate how long a cartridge will be!
The other guys on this forum will be able to expand on what I have said here and probably make it a bit easier to understand, but I hope this helps for a start.

#4: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: English MikeLocation: Whitehaven, Cumbria, UK PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 6:12 pm
Here's (most) of what I started with:

Lyman 48th Edition Reloading Handbook
Rockchucker Supreme Master Reloading Kit
Dial or digital calipers
Hornady L-n-L OAL gauge, modified case & bullet comparator.
Scale check weights
Lee case trimmer & gauge (use a cordless screwdriver to power it)
RCBS powder measure stand.

#5: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: shadowdrak PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 6:49 pm
Thanks for all the helpful info so far. I'll have to get the book and the kit to start reloading. Start from there and learn, hopefully without bad results. Also, is it cheaper to reload your own ammo these days or to buy the ammo?

#6: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: hunterjoe21Location: Billings, Montana PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 7:19 pm
It's cheaper to reload...

If you continue to shoot at your current pace....

If you start shooting more.....

Because you "need" to test a new round...

or you're "almost there"...

or "this is the one I was lookin for"....

or "It's OK honey, just one more trip to the range, and I'll be done"....

or "WOW, this one shoots a LOT better than that one"....

or "I thought we had the ballistics down"...


#7: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: hunterjoe21Location: Billings, Montana PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 7:22 pm

get a manual, BEFORE you buy a kit......

Read it, ask questions, evaluate your situation, ask more questions, buy some stuff, ask more questions...

Notice a pattern here????

I'm sure others will chime in with their favorite manual too...

And some kinda offers about stumps-n-beers...

or was it bumps-n-steers....

I can never keep it straight.....

#8: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: PumpkinslingerLocation: NC foothills PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 9:38 pm
Welcome Shadowrak!

I agree with getting a manual or several and reading up a bit before buying equipment. If you have a particular bullet in mind be sure to buy that manual.

I also agree that you should start with a single stage press when you do get ready to buy. If you look around this site a bit you'll find previous posts to help folks get started reloading. And, as has been said, please feel free to ask questions, there are some pretty knowledgable folks floating around here! I know I've learned some stuff!

#9: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: roimon13Location: Australia-Illawarra PostPosted: Mon May 19, 2008 4:18 am
Yep all of the above sounds right to me.
I started like you - without a clue and read what I could, then I went and spent too much money on good gear and then approached a fellow member of SSAA who was the branch armourer and ask him a heap of questions, in the end I think he felt sorry for me and gave me a 1 on 1 lesson. This was absolutely great.
The gear that I bought is quality but I don't think I load the quantity to justify it at this point in time. I am however loading .308w to sub MOA so I am happy.
Ray. Very Happy Very Happy Laughing

#10: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: shadowdrak PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 8:22 pm
This is all great advice on here. As for the question of the type of ammo I'll be using, I think it will be maybe trying out some of the best stuff out there and see what the rifle likes best. Another quick question.... awhile back I saw some spitzer boattail round bullets, are these great to use? I know boatails help the aerodynamics, but should spitzers with there sharper fron profile work a little better? Thanks for all the help so far. Definitely wait to get the book before buying any equipment to make sure I get the right stuff. I'm looking to load some quality rounds to get better accuracy at longer ranges.

#11: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: PumpkinslingerLocation: NC foothills PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 11:09 pm
Used the PointBlank software to compare two .308 loads, one with a 150 gr spitzer flat base and the other with a 150 gr spitzer boat tail. With a muzzle velocity of 2800 ft/sec and both loads zeroed at 200 yards. The boat tail will shoot about 6" higher/flatter at 800 yards and have about 24 ftlbs more energy.

#12: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: shadowdrak PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 10:06 am
I figured spitzer boatail rounds should really good compared to say an HPBT or some other boattail round. When I read certain magazine articles, they usually state testing rounds out their rifles that are hollowpoint variations instead of using spitzer boattail rounds. That is why I was asking about them. I thought maybe they didn't perform as good as some other rounds.

#13: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: BushmasterLocation: Ava, Missouri PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 2:09 pm
Hell...I go to the range to shoot all my reloads just so I can go home and reload them...If I haven't got any empty brass that means I need to go to the range...

Lyman's 48th Edition is a real good start...You will need others too, but this one should be the one you read cover to cover first...

Terrible habit...er...hobby to start 'cause you can't quit. Before you know it you will be collecting brass you don't have guns for. Of course this a good reason to explain to the wife that you need a new gun...By the way...There is no cure for this habi...Aah...Hobby. And no halfway house either...

If you are strapped for cash or just want to get your feet wet. Look at Lee single stage "O" press and/or a Lee Turret. The "C" press just isn't strong enough to do rifle cases... Do a lot of reading and select the equipment you think you'll need to get started. Like calipers, case trimmer and a scale. These are the three most important tools you'll need to get started after the manual...From here there is no boundry as to what you can spend...

Welcome to this fine site...Grab a beer and pull up a stump...That's stump'n beer Hunterjoe21...

#14: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: shrpshtrjoeLocation: Maryland PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 2:40 pm
My .308 seems to like what ever I feed it it's not hard to work up a load for it. My deer load is 45.5 grains of Varget and the 150 gr Nosler Accubond.

#15: Re: 308 Win. reloading Author: wncchester PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2008 2:55 pm
"...question I have from doing research on the net is that Rem. has a longer throat in the chamber to prevent gas build-up from people creating too long a round in the chamber and something like "skipping"?"

Started this in '65, never heard of "skipping". ??? Anyway, I don't think Remmy chambers are any longer for the cartridges they chamber for than anyone else' and gas "build-up" is what drives all bullets.

A standard chamber is cut for the longest, heaviest ROUND NOSE bullet factory loaded for the rifle. Heavy round nosed bullets touch the rifling sooner than ligher spitizer types and the chamber is cut long for safety.

Pinching a bullet by driving it firmly into the rifleing does increase start pressure higher than when seating further back. Some folks call that "extra" space ahead of a lighter spitzer bullet "freebore" but it really isn't, it's just the normal chamber dimension. Freebore is a much longer throat for the cartridge than it really has to have for safety. Freebore does allow us to load greater charges AT THE SAME PRESSURE than shorter chambers allow. Weatherby freebores their rifles, Rem. does not.

It's a common fallicy to say that "best accuracy" comes from seating into the lands and many people agonize over how to accomplish that with long factory chambers. Touching the lands tends to be true for BR rifles, they often seat bullets shallow and soft. That's not the way of ours, we usually seat so the bullets are firmly held in the cases, about a full caliber deep. We get better accuracy with our bullets seated back off the lands. That does give our bullets a running start before striking the lands and it holds pressure down a little.

Have fun with your new hobby.

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