View Full Version : .308WIN in an FAL- does bullet weight matter?
May 15, 2001, 22:58
Was wondering if it mattered whether 180gr. 168gr. or 110gr. bullets were used. Would lighter bullets tend to have lesser case pressures? Or is a .308 a .308 irrespective of bullet weight?
May 16, 2001, 00:45
If you are talking about reloading for the .308, then go by what powder weight range the reloading manual recommends for the bullet weight you are using. DO NOT EXPERIMENT! You'll blow yourself and the rifle up! If you are talking about factory loads then any of those will probably work fine in your FAL. They are all within a certain pressure range for the cartridge. Accuracy is another matter. The FAL was designed to shoot military ball which I beleive is 147 gr. The riflings rate of twist is too slow for the heavier bullets and may be too fast for the lighter ones. I think the rate of twist for the FAL is something like 1 in 12" and most bolt guns designed to shoot the 168 gr class of bullet has a 1 in 10" rate of twist.
May 16, 2001, 01:09
Sorry for the lack of clarity- was asking about factory loads having different pressures according to bullet weight.
May 16, 2001, 09:50
A while back I spoke with a guy at Hornady about the pressure to which they load their .308 rounds. He stated that although the pressures varied some among their loads, Hornady held all pressures to below the SAAMI maximum average pressure for .308.
So, do lighter bullets mean less pressure than heavier bullets? Not necessarily.
May 17, 2001, 10:52
For factory ammo, peak pressure is probably going to be pretty consistent between bullet weights. Pressure at the gas port is another matter altogether. Also, different bullets have different effects on recoil, and motion of moving parts. Unless you are already on the ragged edge of functional reliability, any factory load (any bullet weight) should motor right through your FAL.
Factory ammo in any bullet weight is probably safe. You won't know whether it functions in your rifle until you try it. Give it a whirl. Not like you are going to go out and buy eight cases of 110 grain .308 ammo anyhow. As for the heavy loads, even if they function, you'll probably not want to shoot a lot of that when you feel the difference in recoil.
If you want a good game load, buy several boxes of 150 grain soft-point ammo from a reputable manufacturer. I bet you will find that it hits real close to whatever milsurp ball ammo your rifle likes. The FAL is an excellent (albeit way-too-heavy) deer rifle. I use 150-grain loads for deer in my (much lighter) bolt rifle. Knocks 'em right down.
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