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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 01:21 AM Thread Starter
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CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

I am new to reloading and just threw my first rounds of .300 WSM tonight. The max cartridge length is 2.860" as listed in my manuals. I seated the heads to that depth and when I compared it to the factory rounds I have I noticed that the factory loads are much shorter. If I remember correctly they ranged from 2.722" to 2.725". Why is this when the manual is telling me a length that is so much different?

Also, I did not know if I need to apply a crimp to these cases. I wasn't sure since my nosler heads do not have a cannelure.

.300WSM
Winchester WLRM Primers
Hodgdon H380 (60, 62, 64 grains)
165 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip

THANKS

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 02:30 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

no crimp needed.

as for the overall length.... it will vary by bullet weight, shape, brand, length etc. start with the book recommended length for your particular bullet. (sierra lists 2.800" for their 165s and 168s, and hornady lists 2.835" for their 165s and 168s)

as the handloading / accuracy obsession developes you will start loading the rounds custom fit to your chamber size and throat length. (bullet comparators, headspace gauges, oal gauges, micrometers, etc etc)

here is the link for noslers data:
http://www.nosler.com/Reloading-Data...65-Grains.aspx

judging by your powder loads i'd say you've prob seen the nosler data already.

i will say that 2 grain increments are pretty large steps, especially near max. most guys will start 5 to 10% under max and work up in .2 or .3 gr increments. At 2 grains you could easily miss a sweet spot for your rifle. Or run into high pressure without a lot of warning.

enjoy the 300wsm. i love mine. i havent tried h380 so i cant offer any advice load wise. i have had great luck with RL17 and 168gr sierras.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 03:06 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

try setting your rifle's max depth...resize a case lightly, and insert a bullet in it. bullet should be able to slide in and out with a decent bit of force, but not be too lose that it falls out. seat it very shallow.

Chamber (carefully) this round and when you remove it, the bullet should be seated RIGHT AT THE LANDS for your chamber.

Some reloads like to jump into the lands. having the bullet seated into the lands before firing can cause over pressure. seating right at the lands can do this as well. Most folks find about .005 to .009 off the lands is ideal. depends on your gun and powder choice too.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 07:08 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

The shape/length of the bullet and length of your rifle's throat dictate your loaded round's maximum OAL. Likely, the factory ammo's bullets were not the same as what you were using.

No crimp is needed.

You may want to try H4350. Many shooters, including myself, have had good luck with it in the .300 WSM...

I would seat to the recommended OAL for that bullet then tweak seating depth once a satisfactory load is found. NEVER seat bullets into the lands in a hunting rifle....
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 11:37 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

Like Bob said, that max legnth may or may not work....


For hunting rifles, figure out the max legnth that works in your magazines! Otherwise, longer rounds will make yer rifle a single shot....

If magazine legnth is shorter than max, go with it....

Start out at the book minimum and work up in .5gr increments...I load 3 of each...some load 5...shoot groups...pick the winner..make notes if you think you pulled shots, felt good about the entire group etc...reshoot all the ones that were the best...

Then, you can tinker with oal from the charge later...
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-02-2010, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

Ok so I will load some starting at 60 gr. and increase that in much smaller increments.

Should I pull the rounds that I loaded with 64 gr. since they are the max charge for that powder?

And if I do how can I use my inertia bullet puller without breaking the polymer tip when it comes out. I had to pull one already and when the head came out and hit the inside of the bullet puller it broke the polymer tip. I didn't know if anyone knew of something I could put at the bottom to act as a cushion.

Thanks for clearing up my concern about the OAL. I was under the assumption that each caliber had one set OAL.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-03-2010, 02:37 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

each caliber has a MAX OAL...but, like i said, many times, MAX OAL is too long to fit your magazine if your rifle isnt a single shot...i know when i loaded for my 35 whelen 7600, max oal was WAY too long..


what i did was start at the minimum, and work up to the max in half grain increments..load 3 or 5 at each charge and shoot groups...WATCH FOR PRESSURE SIGNS! just because the book says 64 is max, your chamber may tell you 63gr is max...or, 66 may be max..never know...ive never went beyond the books..though some do..i will not suggest it..some signs of pressure arent obvious and cant be a fatal error...


like was said, OAL and accuracy go hand n hand..but, then again, you still got max magazine length and action to fiddle around..in my 7600, max magazine legnth was too long for a live round to eject..for a hunting rifle, i want my ammo to load and feed through the magazine and also eject properly at the end of the hunt..not get stuck in the action...


with the puller, ive pulled Accubonds with the hammer style puller...it damaged tips...i used them as flyers to shoot at the range before i start shooting groups..just incase they werent as accurate as they should be..they were just slightly bent/deformed..bullets were fine..hit the target too..with the puller and a tightly packed charge, make double sure you got every grain of powder out of the case...i had some stick and couldnt figure out why my case over flowed with a mild charge...
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-03-2010, 03:08 AM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

Quote:
Originally Posted by winchesterbob
The shape/length of the bullet and length of your rifle's throat dictate your loaded round's maximum OAL. Likely, the factory ammo's bullets were not the same as what you were using.

No crimp is needed.

You may want to try H4350. Many shooters, including myself, have had good luck with it in the .300 WSM...

I would seat to the recommended OAL for that bullet then tweak seating depth once a satisfactory load is found. NEVER seat bullets into the lands in a hunting rifle....
I read somewhere that you want a heavy 20 - 30 thousands of and inch of bullet jump as a minimum for this round. Other cases you can get away with seating the bullet in the 5 - 10 thousandths with no issues.

You can have it when you rip it from my cold, dead hands.........
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-03-2010, 12:29 PM
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Re: CARTRIDGE MAX LENGTH AND CRIMP QUESTIONS

Keep the 64 gr ones for now. You may find that it's the best load. If it shows no signs of high pressure you can use it.
I placed a small piece of foam , from a old cushion, in the bottom of my hammer puller.

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