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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm stuck choosing a bullet for reloading.

I have a Savage 10FP in .308 and use it mainly for informal target shooting but plan to also use it to hunt whitetail on a rare occasion.

I have selected Varget, BR2 primers.

I would ideally like to tailor a load to suit the rifle that is pretty accurate out to 200yds on paper and also suitable for deer without having to recalibrate dies, scopes, POI, etc.

I know that this may end up being a compromise, but I feel uncomfortable using the "standard" 168 SMK on game.

I've been looking at Hornady A-Max, SST, some Rem rounds, but really don't know enough to compare.

Any takers?
 

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One point to remember is the .308 doesn't require some sort of magic bullet at a dollar a pop or better. Get some Hornady spire points, some Rem core lokts and some Speer Hot Cores and see which one your rifle shoots best. 150gr bullets should be about right. 165grs if you want to go a little heavier.
One point is there has probably been more deer killed with a Core Lokt bullet than any other.
Winchester, I am sure, makes some good bullets but I don't have any experience with them.
Why did you pre-determine to use Varget and bench rest primers?
 

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Before you give those others a try, one of the best bullets I could recommend is Barnes' 168gr. Triple Shock X Bullet. Those TSXs are very accurate (capable of target grade accuracy), and they have %100 weight retention almost %100 of the time. I've personally seen how well they hold up, and I was impressed.

TSX Bullet Listings

TSX Loading Guidelines

Check them out and read up on them; maybe buy a box and see what they can do. You might be pleasantly surprised.

:D
-Patriot
 

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Unless I'm hunting game that's bigger than the cartridge is designed for, I don't like to spend more than necessary for bullets. In cases like using, for example, a .308 for elk hunting, then I'd use something like the TSX bullets because of the penetration and weight retention. I'd also use premium bullets for hunting whitetails with a .243. But for deer with a .308, there's no need to pay more. I like Speer bullets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
beemanbeme said:
Why did you pre-determine to use Varget and bench rest primers?
I just looked at as much loading data as I could find, in books and online and Varget always seemed to be near the top for this and .223, my other rifle caliber. And of the Varget users, the majority seemed to favor BR2s.

So I thought I should follow the herd til I have some experience and then look to experiment to improve.
 

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Of the standard bullets I have had my best results with sierra across calibers. The hornady 165 grain btsp has worked well for me when I shot a 308. Nosler Balistic tips are also well known for accuracy but I would consider them a semi-priemium bullet so the are more expensive than the standards. Any hunting bullet between 150 and 180 should fit the bill. Who knows maybe you could use a match for target and standard for hunting the 308 I had was not really sencitive to what bullet I put into it POI was about the same.
 

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For cheap but very effective (and in my experience accurate) look at Remington's PSP Core-Lokts. I use them at about 308 vel. in my 30-06 on deer. Another powder option is Ramshot's TAC. Its a spherical powder that is very temperature stable from what I hear and can be used in 223 and 308. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
High Brass said:
For cheap but very effective (and in my experience accurate) look at Remington's PSP Core-Lokts.
Thanks for the help.

Factory Core-Lokts seem to work best so far, with good one inch groups at 100 yards.

I'll buy a selection and give them a go.

I assume that as the barrel is a 1 in 10 twist, I should go for the 165s or 170s?
 

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I think you'll find the 170gr bullet is designed for 30-30s and wouldn't work well in your .308. I have never owned a .308, opting for the 30-06 instead, but I have fired a couple of tons (conservative estimate) of 165gr Rem PSP Core Lokt bullets thru my 30-06 and have been well pleased with the accuracy and results on game. If you have a "standard" twist in your rifle, it should be around 1 in 9 or 10 and should handle bullets from 150 to 180 quite well.
If you are getting 1" groups (+/- a tad), you have got an excellent start toward a freezer of venison. :D
 

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Varget is an excellent powder for the .308, with a good velocity/pressure curve and normally excellent accuracy. It is also temperature stable, another nice feature. BR primers are a personal choice, they are sometimes a bit hotter than normal primers and often have a thicker cup, depending on brand.

Questor is right IMO, the .308 doesn't need premium bullets for deer. I too like Speer bullets, having had far too many bullet failures with Sierra game bullets on deer and caribou. But if 150 CoreLokts shoot well for you, that's all you'll need for a one-load deer/target/plinking rifle. :D
 

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bullet selection

Beemanbeme, not only is Varget an excellent powder for .308........according to Hodgdon's website, it is THE powder for.308. Based on this, I tried it in my .308 Remington Varmint Synthetic & got 1" groups @ 200yds. It impressed me mightily! jd45
 

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If your going to hunt where it can get cold forget the CCI BR2's. They are great for varmints or target shooting in mild weather. They aren't reliable when it's cold. I had 5 misfires out of one box of 2506's with BR2's on a day that was 10 above 0. Switched primers and tried the same load on the same day and no misfires.using WLR's. I've only had 8 misfires in 35 years, and 5 of them came from that one box. The others were , one Win factory load 30-06, and two with no anvil that I missed when loading the primerfeed tubes(anvil down).
The Sierra 165 "Gameking" is a good substitute for the MK's in hunting loads for deer. The Barnes 165 TSX, as stated before, is better for larger game.
 

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I wasn't knocking Varget. I haven't tried it in anything except a 22-250 and a 7-08. And the jury is still out.
What drove my curiosity was it seemed that the original poster had decided on a powder and primer and was then kinda looking for a rifle to fit. Which, perhaps, is as good a way as any. I collected 1500 .223 cases before I ever owned a .223.
For what its worth, I've tried br primers versus standard primers in match grade rifles and couldn't tell a difference. The reason could well be that I am not that great of a shot but I have heard the same thing from others that are good shots. I, of course, discount any posts about switching to a br primer changed a load from a 6" spray and pray to a one holer. There ain't no component that's gonna do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
beemanbeme said:
What drove my curiosity was it seemed that the original poster had decided on a powder and primer and was then kinda looking for a rifle to fit. Which, perhaps, is as good a way as any. .
Well, almost. I had the rifle that was shooting easy 1 inch groups at 100yds with 70c off the shelf CoreLokt. (despite my serious lack of ability, cleaning inbetween rounds, slight flinch and too much adrenaline).

So I decided to reload to bring this to about 35c a round. Twice as much bang for the buck. The accuracy nuts seem to like Varget, and Varget seems to be very consistent in all temperatures, at least according to Hogdons manual. And all the other reloading books seemed to list Varget as a decent powder for the 308. Most had BR2 data, especially at SavageShooters.com.

So I was left choosing a bullet. In the end, thanks to this group, I picked up some Harnady A-Max 168, Matchkings in 168 and also some cheaper 168 Remington PSPCL.

I'll try to find the best 168gn combineation, then start varying weights and primers.

Thanks again to you all :)
 
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