View Full Version : What powders work for you?
Just wondering what powders have worked well in 308 for the FAL. I have had great success with WW 748. I'm thinking about trying some IMR powders. What different powders have worked well for you?
[ May 12, 2001: Message edited by: JoeG ]
Upside Down @ 100 MPH
May 12, 2001, 15:41
The only IMR powder I've tried is 4064 and it does well for me with 168 grain Hornady match bullets.
Two other powders that are equally as good with this bullet in my gun are N140 and Hodgon Varget, but I ain't through testing yet. :D
IMR-4895, either new or surplus (NOT H-4895, it's another powder altogether!) and W-748 with 147-150 grain bullets. IMR-4895 with 168 grain bullets. Next to try is N-140 with 168 grain bullets, it is supposed to burn cleaner, no big deal with an FAL but good for a glass-bedded M-1A. I am happy with the two powders I have tried so far.
My standard "blasting" 7.62 load for less-than-match rifles is Federal, W-W military or Lake City military brass, CCI thick-cup primer (No. 34), FN or Hornaday 147 grain FMJ bullet, and IMR-4895 to try to duplicate ball ammo.
I haven't loaded a lot of ball equivalent since I started buying milsurp, though. With Radway Green, DAG and Hirtenberger delivered for $125-$180/1,000, it makes handloading seem an expensive luxury. I do save my Hirty empties, though, because I know the milsurp .308/7.62 will dry up sooner or later.
May 13, 2001, 10:24
[ September 04, 2001: Message edited by: sixplusone ]
May 13, 2001, 10:25
Forgot; Benchmark looks good for the lighter bullets.
May 13, 2001, 19:17
I use IMR 4895 exclusively for use in all my .308 (and '06, 8mm, 7.5, 6.5) rifles, with the exception of my hunting load for my Model 7, where I use 4064. I have no preferrence over mil vs. comm brass, but I do try to keep them seperate. I agree with Buff that loading .308 is a money losing proposotion when compared to going surplus prices. I am sitting on a pile of .308 brass right now and I am seriously considering priming only for future use. I cannot see dumping pounds of powder into these when surplus is so much cheaper.
May 13, 2001, 21:49
The .308 is tolerant of virtually any rifle powder. I've tried various IMR and Accurate Arms powders. They all work. Milsurp powders are a good choice to save $$$.
However, a big problem with reloading for FAL's is that most chambers are very generous, and extraction/ejection does great violence to the brass. You won't get many reloadings from a batch of brass before you start seeing an unacceptable number of head separations.
May 14, 2001, 03:52
I really like WInchester 760. I like the fact that it's a ball powder which makes it really easy to measure out. On the down side it really stinks when fired...
May 14, 2001, 09:04
Mr. Jeter is that generous chamber responsible for the swell of .006 thou. just in front of the web?
I think I might have to look into the bulk ammo and just pay the darn shipping costs to W.Coast. Rather than working the brass.
AnotherQ; are pointed FMJ the standard with regards to reliable mag feeding?
I'll answer for Gary, if he doesn't mind.
Yes, the chamber's dimensions are responsible for the swelling of the fired casing above the cartridge's web or head. The side wall of the cartridge case is much thicker at the bottom end (web or head), and it doesn't expand like the thinner wall above it. The swelling is not limited to FALs or military rifles. I have a Ruger M-77 in 7x57 Mauser that expands there worse than any U.S. or European military rifle I have ever seen, and a hunting buddy's M-77
in .30-06 is so over-size we had to send a sizing die and some fired cases to RCBS to have them bevel the bottom (entry) of the sizing die more to get the case reduced instead of the case just smashing and crumpling above the head or web. (Ruger said the chamber was within their manufacturer's specifications and recommend no handloads be used in their guns.)
Yes, pointed FMJ is the standard in the FAL, and most all other battle rifles, especially semiauto and auto, for reliablility. That is what they are designed for.
I have not shot any, but read nothing but good reports on the Singapore milsurp, and Dan's sells it at a very attractive price, with minimal additional shipping cost to the west. Century also includes shipping in the cost of their ammo to anywhere in the continental U.S.
[ May 14, 2001: Message edited by: BUFF ]
May 14, 2001, 17:24
I use the surplus WC846 I get from www.gibrass.com (http://www.gibrass.com) It is the equivilent of BL(C)2. Works great in any gas operated gun. Works wonders out of both of my M1A's.
Using 43.6g of the WC846 and pulled 150g FN bullets, both my FAL's use a gas setting of 5.
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