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Thread: "Air space" in 303 British and 308 Winchester caseloads...Dangerous?

  1. #16
    I hunt, therefore I am.
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    I have a subsonic load of 2208 in .308.
    It's definitely in the allegedly dangerous zone.
    Trajectory same as .22lr. But wil take 500FPE out a couple hundred yards.
    Animals don't argue with it.
    Quote Originally Posted by 308
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  2. #17
    Member Marty Henry's Avatar
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    Cast lead is a bit of a different matter. For me 10 grains of blue dot certainly is nowhere near a full case but under a 180 grains cast lead projectile my martini enfield loves it. No filler. Actually a full case of blue dot would be very bad i suspect.
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  3. #18
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    had 110grn loads in 270 made for me by local sports shop using 760 powder...but me thinks it was old/dodgy batch....UNLESS I did the point at moon.lower and fire thing,I got double detonation...I had asked for velocity around 3000fps.... by putting powder in rear of case the detonation was good.
    years later I did the maths and tried to duplicate this load with ZERO issues.
    found a hard case way to seat to projectile width the other day..pretty much by mistake.... I placed projectile in case mouth by hand,screwed die back out,took it down till it just touched projectile with projectile sitting sideways between base of die and case holder,tightened things up....removed sideways projectile and proceded to seat....seemed to work well... NORMALLY all I do is set die with a factory round...or previously made reload...place loaded round in shell holder,unscrew top of seating die,lower ram,then slowly screw stem inwards till handle twiches like your old fella when is sees boobies...STOP thinking of boobies....stop threading stem in....and proceed to seat your loads...check first one out of press in mag and chamber...WITH ALL DUE CAUTION...

  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi Sapper View Post
    With reloading 303 and 308 I am now looking at reducing the projectile seating depth to reduce the "bullet jump" I currently have with commercial loads. Sadly, there are 3 gray areas of my knowledge.

    1...Having entered reloading via black powder, I am very conscious of the danger from air space in BP rounds and with the reduced seating depth of 303 and 308 projectiles, is the increased airspace in the case a danger, as it is for B.P. I am using when using ADI AR2208.

    If not, great, if so, would the usual space fillers for B.P. be suitable?

    2...Reducing the projectile seating depth, results in less length of the projectile in the case. For safety and pressure, is there a minimum length of projectile required in the case.....or is it that it must just be solidly fixed?

    3...Does the answer to 2 also apply to boat tail projectiles as they have a tapering end which, dependent upon the taper, reduces the ability of the case to securely hold the projectile?


    Finally does the OAL measurement as given in the appropriate dies have any relevance to the above? i.e not to be exceeded under any circummstances.
    Thank You.
    I suguest you buy a reloading manual preferably put out by the manufacture of the projectiles you are using, load your ammo with the overall length as given
    and the start load and work up in 0.5 grain steps until you find the most accurate powder charge this will give you a known load to check other loads performance
    against, choose a powder that gives the best velocity with 90% case capcity compressing modern smokeless powders is not recommended when starting out,
    With the .308 and .303 Brit 2206H and 2208 are the easiest to work with both lead and jacketed bullets for reduced loads use Trail Boss, Stay within recommended
    powder charge weights and you can't go wrong, And forget about S.E.E it does not happen.
    Kiwi Sapper likes this.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky Duck View Post
    I got double detonation.....
    I've heard this story before. Maybe even from you. How do you know you got "double detonation".... and what exactly is that, anyway...

    (some keyword searches are SEE, secondary explosive effect; and detonation, which is the super-sonic propagation of "an explosion" which afaik is impossible in this scenario as powder is rather carefully engineered to deflagrate (burn at subsonic speed)...rather than detonate. And the transition has been carefully studied by folks clevererer than me. And if they reckon it ain't too likely, I'll reckon it aint too likely.
    Quote Originally Posted by 308
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  6. #21
    Member Cordite's Avatar
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    @Kiwi Sapper

    Concentricity of bullet seating refers to the bullet axis being concentric with the bore axis. Not a problem in round balls, but in long and pointy bullets it is. A oblong bullet engaging the rifling at an angle will, if you trace the progression of its very tip, progress in a corkscrew manner through the barrel, and on exiting fly in a corkscrew trajectory until the spin stabilises it ... at a random point in the corkscrew trajectory. And it flies straight from that point on. This theory predicts that if you zero your rifle at a particular point, bullets will tend to hit AROUND this point, and with less initial corkscrewing the smaller the ring diameter. That is, if you shoot 20 round groups, the groups should be less dense around their middles.

    Back to @winaa's comment that he believes concentric rounds are more important than jump.
    "I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book." Groucho Marx

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by csmiffy View Post
    @mimms2 I thought I read years ago that they did prove it?
    Took a certain set of parameters
    A certain powder type, in a certain size case as in maybe 308 or bigger, and massive underloading like less than 50% of volume. Something like that
    Then it was relatively repeatable.
    Not generally a few grains under minimum but quite a lot like a cock up with the powder thrower or misinterpretation of load data. @grandpamac do you remember the details or is it indeed a myth
    Greetings Csmiffy,
    The article that I mentioned in an earlier post was in Handloader about 40 years ago. The rifle was a .240 Gibbs and the writer found he was able to produce pressure spikes with reduced loads and holding the rifle muzzle down before firing. This was in one rifle with his components. The .240 Gibbs is based on the .30-06 case with the shoulder moved well forward and increased to around 40 degrees. If there ever was a barrel burner this would qualify so the rifle would likely have had a rough leade. The writer had purchased the rifle second hand so there is another unknown. I have seen the statement that laboratories have failed to demonstrate pressure spikes from reduced loads of slow powder in large capacity small calibre cases but have never seen any detail to back it up.
    Regardless the caution applies to a specific small group of cartridges and may have been reduced or eliminated by modern manufactured powders. 40 years back there was a lot of military surplus slow powder about which was never originally intended to find its way onto a handloaders bench.
    So to ease Kiwi Sapper's mind none of this applies to the .308 or .303. The main danger here is a too light load failing to ignite the powder at all, or the powder being omitted completely. This can leave the projectile just far enough in the barrel so that a second round can be chambered behind it and very bad things happening if the trigger is pressed. I have heard first hand of both of these happening recently, fortunately both were detected and no harm was done.
    Regards Grandpamac.
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  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi Sapper View Post
    What Ho Chaps,

    My thanks for your helpful and reassuring posts. I now understand that:

    Case neck to projectile contact should be the diameter of the projectile.......Although this precludes my efforts to substantially reduce bullet jump in my 308. So be it. I asked, you answered, I follow.

    As I seek "hot loads like a gay guy seeks a couger," and as an x civil servant, "I can follow the handbook instructions", <80% low loads are of no interest" SO filling "air space" with modern powders will not be an issue.


    The "Boat tail" comments are particularly helpful and reassuring. I only have a left over 80 pack of them which I will save for the rainy day I runut of FMJ for the Spanish FR 8 which is #2 308.

    Just a couple of "things'..........

    Thing 1......I learned a new word today....concentricity I Googled and apart from understanding a central point of a circle....I am still Duh and fail to understand the link to projectiles...apart from being round and "balanced'


    Thing 2......I still lack guidance on my query "does the OAL measurement as given in the appropriate dies have any relevance to the above? i.e not to be exceeded under any circumstances"

    I understand @mimms2 post ( Thank You) "..OAL depends on projectile and a more useful measurement is "Base to Ogive" as homing in on "bullet jump" i encountered another new word Ogive and I have acquired the goodies required to measure that and it is the measure for improvment ......even if I can't achieve it because of chamber length.

    SO, is OAL a safety Law or guidance?


    Again, many thanks.



    P.S. @grandpamac....

    I followed your guidance re projectiles for the Parker Hale Mauser 308 and now have a goodly collection of Hornady Interlock 150 flat base . The 80 BT 's are leftover from seeing which she liked :>)
    Greetings Kiwi Sapper,
    In answer to your specific Question no 2. The maximum OAL listed in some manuals is there as a suggestion only. Provided you have the projectile seated far enough into the case to keep it there and the cartridge will fit in the magazine there will be no problem. Some testing that I have read showed that a longer jump to the rifling does reduce velocity somewhat. Seating the projectile further out to be close to the rifling in the same chamber reduces velocity a little more. I seat the projectiles further out in my 6.5 with no problems.
    Regards Grandpamac.
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  9. #24
    Resident Curmudgeon Kiwi Sapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cordite View Post
    @Kiwi Sapper

    Concentricity of bullet seating refers to the bullet axis being concentric with the bore axis..............Back to @winaa's comment that he believes concentric rounds are more important than jump.
    Ah, thank you.
    My ponderings were something along this line but as it is not an issue over which I have any control, ( apart from buying suitable projectiles) I disagree with winaa's view. I believe I have more ability to affect accuracy with projectile seating depth.
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

  10. #25
    Resident Curmudgeon Kiwi Sapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Happy Jack View Post
    As I understand it going longer than the OAL means it won't feed or probably wont feed from the magazine. There must be other reasons but being new to all this I don't know them.
    My thoughts entirely.
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

  11. #26
    Resident Curmudgeon Kiwi Sapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimms2 View Post
    OAL is determined by SAAMI spec which is what manufacturers cut chambers to, make magazine length to etc.
    It's usually "good enough" but the golden dimension for me has been 0.02 ogive to lands.
    Ah, now that is of use as I am aware that several views exist on "touching" to 'away from". So if the chamber length and magazine allow it, that 0.02 will also b my goal.

    Thank You.
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

  12. #27
    Resident Curmudgeon Kiwi Sapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Henry View Post
    Cast lead is a bit of a different matter. For me 10 grains of blue dot certainly is nowhere near a full case but under a 180 grains cast lead projectile my martini enfield loves it. No filler. Actually a full case of blue dot would be very bad i suspect.
    Bother..............I was progressing nicely with 303 and 308 and modern powder then you bring this up...Now I'm going to have to look at my Martini Enfield as casting lead is on the to do list for my MLE.......Now extended to the M.E, but as I don't.want to buy, (even if I could) another powder so will have to workout a lower powder charge for 2208.

    Thank You.......I fink. :>)
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

  13. #28
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    I have 2208 recipies for both 303 (to match the sellier belot 150gn loading) and 308. I'll post them when I get to a PC as reference.
    Kiwi Sapper likes this.
    Quote Originally Posted by 308
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    Diligentia Vis Celeritas
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  14. #29
    Resident Curmudgeon Kiwi Sapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grandpamac View Post
    ..................
    So to ease Kiwi Sapper's mind none of this applies to the .308 or .303. The main danger here is a too light load failing to ignite the powder at all, or the powder being omitted completely. This can leave the projectile just far enough in the barrel so that a second round can be chambered behind it and very bad things happening if the trigger is pressed. I have heard first hand of both of these happening recently, fortunately both were detected and no harm was done.
    Regards Grandpamac.
    having fired a lot of WW 2 303, I am now VERY conscious of a click.....bang

    Or even worse, a click.......

    Consequently the latter causes me to freeze for 15 seconds then eject and "peer myopically down the long hollow thing." :>)
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimms2 View Post
    I have 2208 recipies for both 303 (to match the sellier belot 150gn loading) and 308. I'll post them when I get to a PC as reference.

    All assistance gratefully received. Thank You
    “There was a moment's suspense while Conscience and Sheer Wickedness fought the matter out inside him, and then Conscience, which had started on the encounter without enthusiasm, being obviously flabby and out of condition, threw up the sponge.”

 

 

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