308 Win with Reloder 17

bobnob

Handloader
Nov 3, 2012
678
10
I've been shooting 308 Win since the age of 14. I've probably fired near 10000 rounds at game and almost all handloads, with either H4895, Varget (known as AR2206H and AR2208 here) and a now superseded powder known as AR 2206.

Recently the LR bug has bitten and I've been shooting a converted Sportco fullbore target rifle chambered in 308 Win out to ranges of 750y. Been using H4895 and the 168g Amax. This has been a genuine sub-moa load generating around 2750-2800fps in the 26 inch barrel.

Also of late I've been using a lot of Reloder17. I've found it generates great speeds at seemingly mild pressures in a number of cartridges, and as I've got a few kilos of it I thought I'd give it a whirl in the 308, even though I thought it might be a little slow and not generate high speeds.

Well wasn't I wrong?!

I kicked off with a conservative book load of 48g with the 168 Amax. Ave MV for the sole 3 shot group was 2765fps. The next charge weight I'd loaded up was 49.5g, still middle-of-the-road book load. Ave velocity was 2890fps!

No pressure signs but I declined to shoot the last three I'd loaded up at 51g because it clearly would have been very hot.

Compared to my working load of 44.5g of H4895 which is accurate and clocked 2775fps, I was impressed with the speed and the accuracy of the R17 load at 48g. Pic below. Please bear in mind this is at 125y rather than 100...

06BD549B-44B9-4111-BF91-CDE88176910A_zpsfl4hqaom.jpg


So the R17 shows a good bit of promise I believe. Might try something around 48.5-ish and see how the accuracy is.

It's showing itself to be an very versatile powder and I can see a bulk buy coming up as I am now mass producing ammo with it in 250 Sav AI, 270 Win, 30-06 and loading some 243 Win and 25-06 for mates with it...

8C0F5BFF-7F53-4E1A-BC4D-9281D24CD359_zps2twljzww.jpg


That is the rifle. Not flash I know, but the whole outfit only owes me a few hundred and it'll put 5 shots in 5 inches at 750y!
 

jimbires

Handloader
Aug 16, 2011
2,631
687
I started to use RL17 in my one 7mm-08 . I found great speed ,good pressure , and good accuracy . I bought a 260 rem a few months ago and I'm pleased with how RL17 works in it too . RL33 seems to behave the same way in my 338 lapua , high velocity , low pressure .
 

Guy Miner

Master Loader
Apr 6, 2006
16,840
2,129
Bobnob - I'm a big fan of your rifle - and the accuracy you've achieved with it is commendable.

I've not yet tried RL-17, but given your report... Why not?

Regards, Guy
 

kraky1

Handloader
Mar 7, 2012
494
0
Re 17 is a wonderful powder that works anywhere the 4350s do. In the past I've been buying it by 1 pound bottles and it's always tracked really well with quick load for me. On a recent trip to the gun shop I noticed they had a five pound jug for $99 it went home with me! My 3006, 308, and 7o8, are very happy!
 

jason miller

Handloader
Sep 4, 2012
292
0
There's a member over on 24hourcampfire that has gotten some very impressive results with R17 and 215 Bergers in a .308. Seems to be the way to go for really long range shooting. I believe he was getting good accuracy out to a mile...
 

bobnob

Handloader
Nov 3, 2012
678
10
Thanks for the comments. Yes I think it is worth experimenting further for sure. I was thinking of going to the 155g Scenar or the 155 Sierra TMK when my bulk supply of these Amaxes runs out (bought 2000 that were actually marketed as Zmax with the green tips) so it'll be interesting to see if it can haul the mail with lighter ones.

Guy, yes it's a diamond in the rough! Better still it's one of few Aussie made rifles that are still floating around. Purpose built to shoot 1000y matches, hand lapped barrel and 3 lug PF bolt, a very simple cylindrical receiver. A lot to like about it's ruggedness and simplicity.

Frank De Haas did a good write up of it in his book. He seemed impressed too.
 
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