As per the subject line. He has a Redding T7 and curious about dies (Brand) pills and is finding powder choices made horrible by Covid 19 or rather buying up of powder. I don’t have the redding T7 and while I usually use redding dies for rifle calibers know nothing about 6.5 or even the 300 blackout, also on his list. He can get to a 700 or is it 500 yard range in Eastern WA so has in mind long range precision game eventually.
I have told him to check out the various 6.5 creedmoor forums. I have some powder I would be willing to share loan him but is IMR 4895 VV 150 IMR 4064. VV site suggests at least velocity wise vv 150 better for lower bullet weights. He is willing to spend what is needed just doesn’t want to have a collection of dies so buy dear nd cry once I guess. any help appreciated. Afraid I am old 308 338 win mag and 4570 guy
Currently using H4350 for 6.5CM but that is getting hard to find. RL16 is showing good results as is RL17 but watch temp. For bullets Hornady 140 or 143ELD work great. Somewhere in the 41-42g range. Start 10% low and work up slow as your rifle may not like that much. As for dies, I'm using Lee and am quite satisfied but most are using Redding or Hornady. Last get a couple new reloading books and read and have fun.
I have a fair amount of Lee dies, though I think Redding are my favorite, of the type I’ve used.
I would have him get two newer reloading manuals 1st, or at least with the initial order. They will have Creedmore info. I would think medium to slower powders are ballpark.
I still used one of the common 4350’s and then the Ramshot line.
Redding type S bushing full-length sizer. Redding or Forster micrometer seating die. Lapua brass is much easier to get into service, it requires essentially zero first-time prep. But it is expensive. Other brands are less expensive but will normally need to be inspected and at least sized and chamfered before the first loading. If your friend can't stomach the price of Lapua then use Hornady and accept the tradeoff of having to do more work on it. Nosler is good too, but at almost the price of Lapua it's, IMO, not the best way to go. If it makes any different to him, the Hornady brass takes a large primer but Lapua is small primers. Don't know about Nosler. I never found magnum primers to be necessary.
I've been using Berger 140gr VLDs in my 6.5CM, but I'm switching to the Berger 140 Hybrid this year. Supposedly it's less sensitive to seating depth than the VLD. The Hornady ELD or AMAX bullets are good too. Sierra makes a 142gr Matchking that should work as well. Lighter bullets (130-ish) can shoot very well too, but the heavier/longer/higher BC ones are generally preferred for long range shooting.
My rifle likes 40.5gr of H4350 with a 140gr bullet, but it was chambered fairly tight. A commercial chamber would be a little more generous and probably want more powder. As always though, start on the low side and work up.
Point him at NikonUser's stickied precision reloading thread here, it has a lot of good detail about how to set up the bushing sizer die and case prep in general.
thanks for all the suggestions I will relay them. Our local range is closed by governor decree till april 7th is a private club not sure how that works but he is a fellow traveler as shown by his failed attempts at civilian disarmament this last legislative session. long past time to vote him out but we have another opportunity though it is soviet socialist state of WA
Thanks I read through Nikon users guide interesting though all looks like a younger mans game to me. If I get out of the shithole that is WA state may get M1a in 6.5 uses same mags a plus for short actions
A younger man's game? are you kidding me? I'm in my mid-60s and I compete with folks my age or older and they all do the same or worse. It seems it's only the young whippersnappers who actually do not do the steps I outlined and shoot PRS instead. (Looking at you, fritz. )
Sir, I am closer to 70 than 65 but hear you loud and clear. I have a hand tremor bad enough that people wonder how I can shoot as well as I can. Is medication and caffeine induced but is there nonetheless. A large part of long range shooting I am sure is being disciplined and thorough in ammo prep. Some part equipment. I have been looking for an excuse to mount better optics than I have. Night Force well maybe I am nostalgic enough to consider a leatherwood ART though and that likely will do it and then new barrel for M1a. I did mention being a fossil Old as the 308 winchester.
So, we are essentially the same age, give or take a few years. As you would expect, we each have physical challenges, which is only to be expected with the accumulation of years and its accoutrements and consequences.
I've been doing long range competition shooting for over half my life and if I've learned anything about it, it's this: everything counts. Ammo, rifle, shooter, phase of the Moon, wind, geese migration pattern, terrain, conditions, elevation, etc. You do your best to control the things you can control and try to figure out the rest.
And if you want to get into some great optics for long range, Nightforce is a start but there is much better available as we discuss in Mason's Rifle Room.
I'm also in that not-a-young-man's group . More training and tighter ammo seems to help.
I started with Hornady match sizer, seater, brass, and 140 A-Max bullets. Then:
On the equipment side, I've replaced the beam scale with a Sartorius digital. I'm still on the fence with a Frankford Arsenal trickler. The 21st Century Turning Lathe has helped improve seating depth consistency dramatically.
My new favorite gadget is the Lyman tumbler. Nothing like shiny clean brass inside and out with clean pockets.
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