Our monthly IHMSA match is this weekend, which means it’s reloading time for me.Â Bitter and I are also taking two new shooters, possibly more, to the range this weekend for some fun.Â That means I’ll be a reloading fool.
Last time I did IHMSA, I used a 44 special load for shooting field pistol.Â Basically 9 grains of Unique capped off with a 180gr semi-jacketed hollow point.Â I think that load was a bit too hot for my tastes.Â It headed out about 1100 feet per second.Â You just need enough on the bullet to knock the rams over, and I think 900 feet per second would be just fine.Â I think I will reduce the load to 8 grains of Unique this time around.
For the AR-15, I’ve tried and like using Lake City brass with 21gr of IMR-4198 capped off with a 55gr FMJ boat tail round.Â Heads down range fired from my 20″ barrel AR at about 3150 feet per second, with a variance between the max and min only about 19 feet per second.Â Next powder I’m going to try will be Varget, once I use up all the IMR-4198.
Been thinking about a load for reloading the M2 ball I have.Â Seems to be that 50 grains of IMR-4895 with a .308 150gr FMJ boat tail round is reasonable for firing in an M1 Garand.Â Decapping and resizing 30-06 is rough on the arm though.Â Takes a lot more force than .223 or 6.8 SPC brass.
3 thoughts on “Match Time”
Are you still using this setup ? A while back I switched to a lee classic cast press and bolted it to a BEEFY heavy wood bench(think 4×4’s, and 2×8’s). It made a huge difference. I had started to resize machinegun fired 308 NATO brass and thought I was going to break the crappy bench I was using. I switched to my current setup and it’s much easier. You spend less energy flexing the press/bench and more actually moving brass.
If you can find any, Hodgdon BL-C(2) is good also. A bit slower burning than 4895, which the Garand doesn’t seem to mind, but since it’s spherical rather than rod-shaped extrusions, it flows evenly and accurately out of a powder measure. It does like hotter primers though: sometimes CCI200 won’t set it off, ot there will be a delay. I use CCI #34 primers and they work great with BL-C(2). This is also a good combo for No4 Enfields, BTW.
Lastly the bullet itself: the cannelure (if any) is set for .308/7.62, and will result in a shorter overall length, meaning the bullet has further to travel before reaching the rifling and that will affect accuracy. The solution is a Lee crimping die and you can then seat the bullet out to proper M2 COA.
I forgot: the load for BL-C(2) is from 49.0 to 54.0 grains, so it’s about the same as 4895 in terms of how much to use. A buddy of mine is using 50.0 to good effect.
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