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Discussion Starter #1
I finished loading some loads for both handis last night.
I think I am going to like the Lee kit.

The press seems plenty strong to me.
I mounted it and the measure to an old cutting board (1x16x24) and bolted that to my work bench.
The scale is very precise\touchy.
Powder measure is accurate from pour to pour but setting it takes some time as the numbers on the adjustment don't help much.
I ended up using the little dipper and scale to work up loads. The measure will be use full when making a bunch of "that" load though.
Auto prime and cutter tools were simple and reliable.

I did have one problem. Hodgdon and Lee both listed 27.5 grains of Varget as a max load.
27 grain won't quite fit in my Winchester cases though. A few granules fell out when I removed the funnel.
Decided to just use the 26.5g (compressed) I had already loaded as my max for now.

Is there a trick I don't know about?
 

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First off, I don't advocate starting out with "MAX" loads.

Here's a picture of a .223 Winchester case with 27.5 gr. of Varget. NOTE: This is a once fired round and I don't full length resize for my Handi.


I'm assuming you balanced (to zero) your scale.
I have marked a spot on my bench where the Lee Scale sits when weighing powder. Unless your bench is perfectly level you will find the scale balance will not be consistant, depending on where it is sitting on the bench.


Hope this helps!

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That is exactly what mine looked like with 26.5.
Mine were full length re-sized though. Wouldn't think it would make that much difference.
I don't know if it will matter but these are the "silver" plated brass that shot well with factory rounds.
I have noticed that I have to "zero" the scale every time. That's a good Idea marking around it.

I am not starting with max loads. I was loading from 25.5g up to max .5G at a time for my trip to the range.
 

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I think I have some nickel plated .223's somewhere in my collection. I'll try to dig them out and see how they load with the 27.5 gr. Varget and see how they compare.


Bill
 

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My nickel plated .223 cases are Remington and not Winchester, but I did take a new nickel case and full length resized it, plus took a once fired nickel case (neck sized only) and loaded them both up with 27.5 gr. of Varget. In the picture, the one on the left is the new full sized case. Not much difference in capacity.



Bill
 

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PartsMan said:
That is exactly what mine looked like with 26.5.
Mine were full length re-sized though. Wouldn't think it would make that much difference.
I don't know if it will matter but these are the "silver" plated brass that shot well with factory rounds.
I have noticed that I have to "zero" the scale every time. That's a good Idea marking around it.

I am not starting with max loads. I was loading from 25.5g up to max .5G at a time for my trip to the range.
A couple things...Your saying you have to rezero your scale every time ? If your beam scale isn't returning to zero then you are having problems with it that need to be addressed...Is your loading area in a windy location? Is your working surface level and sturdy..? These things can effect your scale...How are you checking it's zero...by just sliding everything to 0..? You need a set of scale weights to verify your scale is accurate...It doesn't matter if it is a Lee scale...or a Ohaus...You have to check them to be sure..

Nickel plated brass has less case capacity than standard brass cases...also they can be much harder to full length re size properly...they some times have the tendency to spring back to their fired shape after you size them..so be cautious when doing so...and keep a close eye on the case mouth for the nickel to start spreading or flaking off...because these can damage your dies pretty quick,Depending on your rifles chamber...and how you have your dies set up..neck sizing can be beneficial as compared to FL sizing..You may get 1-4 firings out of it before needing to set the shoulder back...Like I said...it will depend on your rifles chamber...so..it is something for you to try..

Compressed charges aren't always a bad thing...and you can always use a drop tube or even tap the case lightly on the rim to settle the charge even more....You will have to experiment with the charge weights and see how they stack up...also with the various primers as well...some are hotter than others and this too can effect your loading...and performance...

Mac
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have to re zero every time I take it out of the box.
Not every charge. Sorry I did not clarify.
I think I will double check everything on another case before I shoot any.
 

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That is normal to have to reload it every time you move it. These scale are very sensitive pieces of equipment. If I bump my Lyman digital scale I will usually re zero it. It doesn't take much to throw one off.
 

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When working with near full cases, I would tap the case with my finger nail before pulling the funnel away to settle the powder in. I bought a 6" drop tube funnel last spring and use that now. It is really helpful when using stick powders, like IMR, but it can help in other types too. When I pour into the funnel, I make it have a swirl effect. I do not pour into the center of the funnel, I pour to the side and toward the edge to make it go around the funnel like water down a toilet. I pour slowly to keep up that action. I only do this when working near capacity. You can stuff a little more powder in that way. I seem to get better results over all when working near full capacity. If the powder I am using does not fill the case and I am getting poor results, I go for a slower burning powder to get more into the case. It does not always, but usually works. ;)
 

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I did have one problem. Hodgdon and Lee both listed 27.5 grains of Varget as a max load.
27 grain won't quite fit in my Winchester cases though
Try another case if you want to reach max. I couldn't get close to the published maximum for Varget in my .223 Remington using Remington cases. Other cases (Winchester, W-W Super, & Federal) were lighter and had greater capacity. Or, if 26.5 grains works well for your rifle, be happy with that.
 

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You must remember that MAX in one gun may NOT be the same in another gun! Work up to an ACCURATE LOAD THAT DOES NOT stress the gun or brass. A half grain of powder will not give you that much more velocity in MOST guns. In a .17 remington it could be an over load while the 30-06 would not even notice the difference. The difference in case brand and LOT will make a small change in MAX loads also. I bought a Pact digital scale because I would have to level out the beam every time I set it up.
 

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Ditto on the above, I was recently loading some hunting rounds, and some wolf rounds for my -06. The hunting rounds I was about a grain under max, the wolf rounds, I was about a half grain over max. They both showed no pressure signs... but the wolf rounds (reach out and touch something) were shooting 3"+ groups at 150 yards! That isn't going to help me at 500 yards one bit. So then had to lower the charge.. .and could actually hit something after I reached out...

My lee scale stays on pretty well, just a little adjustment before each loading session. That's a good thing to me, cause it feels each little tiny difference in weight.

Also - look and see if there is an asterisk or percentage marker - some max loads are up to 105-107% of case capacity, so you have to tap down most of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you all for the advice.
I had some kind of stomach virus yesterday.
I spent all day in the bathroom or in bed.
Didn't even get the computer on much less out in the garage to reload.

I'm not that worried. If it's accurate and will out run a coyote I am happy.
It just seemed odd that using the bullet powder and brass listed in the load it wouldn't fit.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well the 223 shot very well. I guess I don't need the other grain to fit.
It was a little windy but I was able to shoot.
Varget in Winchester brass with Winchester small rifle primers. 55g Nosler CT balistic silver tip bullet[/color].

25.5g 3 shots low and left 1.5" group with one flyer high.
26g shot little tighter and no flyer and was 2" above poa and left.
(Adjusted scope 5 clicks right)
All four 26.5g loads about 3/4" group one inch High. :)

The 7mm-08 on the other hand.
Apparently I skipped a couple of important steps.
One of which was "check to see if they will chamber in your gun before you drive to the range".
I have a pretty good idea what the problem is i just need to check.
[/color]
 

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partsman

Good shooting with the 223 and yes thats a BIG oops on the 7/08 ;)

stimpy
 
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