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.308 Winchester - Bolt Action Only

1741 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  dighawaii
The range was like an oven again today, 102° and humidity around 15%. You dehydrate just breathing. Deer season is upon us now as well. This may be good news to the real hunters who check and sight in their rifles in May but it's a bit annoying to wait an hour and a half for a bench while watching some of these wankers try to sight in their rifles. It was a bit like watching a rerun of Gilligans Island (Imagine the skipper shooting and Thurston Howell on the spotting scope).

Every once in awhile I shoot a target worth framing. After I shot this and was waiting for a cease fire to swap out targets someone set up next to me with a .300 Obnoxious Magnum of some sort, with a muzzle brake. The only really nice thing about these rifles is that they are so light weight that they're as unpleasant to shoot as they are to listen to even with a brake, so the shooter rarely makes it through a whole box of ammo. The intrusion was short lived and only caused me to forget what year it was for a brief time.

Each group is five shots at 100 yards shot with a Sako AII Tactical in .308 that I bought used at the San Francisco Gun Exchange many years ago. The rifle had accuracy problems from the beginning; barely able to shoot half dollar sized groups regardless of the ammunition. I think the only reason I kept it was because it was a Sako. I finally had it pillar bedded, the gunsmith dressed the crown, lapped the bolt lugs so they hit evenly and made sure it was free floated. It started shooting so I began to tinker.

A while back I noticed some discrepancies in the loading data for H380 for this powder in a couple of manuals so I began to cross reference and go back through older manuals. I found some data in a couple of older manuals that led me to this load. This load does push the pressure envelope, a few of the 20 rounds on the paper left the bolt a bit stiff to turn so if you want to try it reduce by at least 6% and work back up. H380 fouls the bore quickly so you'll find yourself cleaning the rifle more often as well. It should be noted that loads using H380 are not suitable for gas operated rifles such as the M14 pattern.

While this load has given me excellent results any continuation on my part of .308 loads using this powder will be done with 175g bullets (Sierra or Berger VLD) intended for 600 to 1000 yard bench rest matches. I have worked up excellent loads using Varget with the 168g bullets that I can shoot in both the M14 patterns and the bolt guns.
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I must be drooling on myself. I could have sworn that I posted a picture last night and now I cannot find the post. I'll bet I composed the post and never submitted it. Here it is now: Sako AII. This is the medium length action. For some reason the long action skipped all the way to AV, I've never heard of an AIII or AIV.
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