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View Full Version : Reloading Variables--OAL vs. Powder Charge


larphred
February 14, 2007, 14:04
I worked up a load for my .308 Savage years ago. I went through so many variables that it consumed mass quantities of time & beer. I'm helping 2 friends work out a load as well as working up a load for my .50 BMG.
We've selected cases, primers, and powder. Last two variables are powder charge and OAL. I know the best way to procede would to load 10 or so at variable lengths from no freebore and back off .005" for each subsequent OAL. Ideally each of these different OAL cartridges should be loaded with several different charges, but when you load 10 with each variable the number of cartridges becomes very high. Not bad with .308, but spendy and very time consuming and maybe painful with the BMG.
My question: Would it be acceptable to set a specific powder charge from a reloading manual, then work with different OALs at that given charge? After you've found the OAL that groups best, then you can vary the powder charge at that optimum OAL and look for the best groups.

Muggzy
February 14, 2007, 14:22
I have alway reloaded according to the manuel and sometimes I take stuff from 2 or 3 manuels to get my first or starting load.

But I load with the powder and get the best group I can with the OAL that is
suggested in the manuel....then I play with the OAL.

If you are familier with what your particular rifle likes then I don't see why you could not start out with that OAL

variables... there are too many to list.....but we are looking for the same thing
and that is a clover leaf group
:shades:

So..to answer your question: yes that is acceptable

I just do it backasswards. ( but I think that is acceptable too:biggrin: )

USSR
February 14, 2007, 19:22
My question: Would it be acceptable to set a specific powder charge from a reloading manual, then work with different OALs at that given charge? After you've found the OAL that groups best, then you can vary the powder charge at that optimum OAL and look for the best groups.

larphred,

You are MUCH more likely to find your best groups with a specific powder charge irregardless of the OAL, as opposed to a specific OAL and varying powder charges. Pick your OAL and then go looking for the best powder charge.

Don

FAL4EVER
February 28, 2007, 01:58
Originally posted by larphred
My question: Would it be acceptable to set a specific powder charge from a reloading manual, then work with different OALs at that given charge? After you've found the OAL that groups best, then you can vary the powder charge at that optimum OAL and look for the best groups.

That's how I do it. See what OAL works best and then tinker with powder charge. Regarding the brass I make sure that when FL sizing is desired, I set the die to the proper amount of shoulder bump, depending the guns headspace.
(I consider the RCBS Precision Mic a great help)