.338 Lapua Magnum Loads

Gl*ck4ever said: Hi, I am starting to do some homework on the .338 LM. I have searched the net/talked to guys and I am now trying to decide on the bullet. I have picked US 869 powder (ordered 21 lbs from Higginson) and I am using Lapua cases but I am now trying to decide if I should go with the 250 grain Lapua Scenar or 300 grain SMK. It is a tough decision (I want to order about 1000 bullets) and I don't want to play with different bullets (load workup takes way too much time with 1 bullet let alone 2-3). Anyway, I am leaning towards the 300 Grain SMK as it is a good bullet, better LR performance then the 250's and it is somewhat cheaper. Is there something I am missing? Any opinions are appreciated.

t*riaq said: What if you buy 1000 bullets, and it turns out that that there is no load that meets your satisfaction? You would never know if you made the correct choice. Wouldn't it be better to buy a small quantity of each and see?

Gl*ck4ever said: tiriaq: Good point but as I will have to ship the bullets to me - it is more cost efficient to just buy a large lot. I have never found a quality bullet that wouldn't shoot either. I am just wondering if I should be so quick in dismissing the Lapua bullets...

s*nray said: "...ordered 21 lbs..." You should work up the load before you buy any component except the brass, in bulk. And you have to work up the load no matter how much time it takes. If you don't want to take the time, you might as well sell a kidney and shoot factory. You'd have to buy a box of as many brands and bullet weights as you can to find the ammo your rifle shoots best. If you can find any .338 Lapua. Stateside, Remington 250 grain Scenar Match ammo runs $125.99US per 20. The same bullet in Lapua ammo runs $58.99US per 10.

Gl*ck4ever said: Sunray, I am not a newbie to reloading. 21 lbs isn't a big order of powder (for me at least). Lot changes make working up a load useless. 7000gn of powder to a lb = 70 shots (~100gn/shot of .338LM) 70 shots/lb means I need to buy at least 2 lbs of powder just to shoot 100 shots. If I find a load that works right off the hop I have to now find the same lot number in 7lb kegs (Higginson has weird size cannister compared to other retailers) IF I can't find the same lot I have to buy a 7lb keg and start again. Buying 1-7lb keg isn't worth shipping from Higginson. On a seperate note, I picked US 869 for 2 reasons - it meters well out of my trickler and it is doesn't become a compressed load with either 250/300 gn bullets when you fill the case. I don't see why I should buy factory ammo because I don't want to buy different types of bullets to work up a load with. As a final note, I never said I don't want to work up a load, I just don't want to work up loads for 2 different bullets. I am looking for guys who reload .338LM to share their experience with this caliber...

d*c-garand said: Hi, I have tried to reload 300grSMK for the 338LM with US869 and found the results pretty disapointing:(...to bad it is such a clean burning powder. I shoot with a Timberwolf @ 1:10 and tried A LOT of combinaison (500 round total)of Gr weight versus OAL seatings and couldn't get better than 3/4MOA at 100yds Using H-1000 I reduced quickly to 1/2MOA I have been reloading for more than 20 years and use the best of machinery to work my loads Good luck

N*vy Gunner said: I just picked a supply of 250 grain Scenars from Peter Dobson of Hirsch Precision. An excellent guy to deal with and a great price. Looks like i'm going to go with a H1000 powder and Fed 215 primers and see what loads I can work up. Right now i'm shooting factory 250 Scenars. Navy Gunner

Gl*ck4ever said: Doc: Thanks for the information. I am going to try my first batch with 250 grain scenars (1:9.75 twist) hopefully this isn't too fast for this bullet but I think the scenars are a bit longer then the lockbase (I could be wrong on this). Anyway, I will see how the load works. A lot of guys recommended US 869 because it is dense and meters well. As well, (based on Hodgon's site) similiar loads built up pressure slower then with H1000. Hopefully I have better luck. What length barrels are you guys using - I am going with a 27" tube. I can't find 215 primers - I am going with CCI's. What type of brass were you using with your loads too? (Lapua, Norma, or Hornady?)

cycbb486 said: What if you buy 1000 bullets, and it turns out that that there is no load that meets your satisfaction? You would never know if you made the correct choice. Wouldn't it be better to buy a small quantity of each and see? little discussion I had with Bill Gammon who is a seasoned benchrester. Yes it is for the 6PPC but I think it is the same for all. Just something for you guys to chew on. Here it is: Bill in looking back at the results from the world's I believe 05 you used H322. I started out with H322 for 1 target then change guns and shot VV133 What can you tell me about it in comparison to VV133? H322 is a lot hotter and therefore more subceptable to temperature change I have 22lbs of 133 but was thinking of tryig 322 Save you money! with 22lbs of VV133 shoot it and learn to load it, what year is it?? What I tell everyone who will listen, (which are few and far between anymore) Buy VV133, same lot number, buy a ton of it or as much as you can afford and lean how to shoot it. The end result will be you will notice all of your barrels with about the same load will shoot the same. Tony has 1 load that he shoots in all of his barrels, ready for this!! if a barrel does not shoot that load, good-bye. Both of the barrels I used this weekend shot the same load of 133, same Primers, same bullets, same brass, same sizing die. The only difference is that one barrel was .10/1000 deeper seating. By staying with one powder you will lean it's quirks. And when you try a different bullet and it don't work, it's not the powder. When you make a change of just about any kind except the powder, it's not the powder. You will hear people say, gee! I tried a different bullet and it did not work maybe if I try a different powder it might work, not likely! all you are going to do is blow out a barrel. Bill Gammon is a seasoned shooter and the Tony he is talking about is the infamous Tony Boyer a short range BR legend. When Tony was in his heyday and winning nonstop everyone wanted what Tony had and would probably even do what he did to try and win. Something to ponder.

Gl*ck4ever said: Yeah Calvin, I learnt that lesson years ago with H380. I was reloading 22-250 and bought 3lbs of 1 lot and it shot so well that I decided to buy another 8lbs. When I finally shot through all 11 lbs (11- 1lb jugs) I tried to go back and buy more. Couldn't get any more of the same lot and I looked all over Edmonton. So I bought a different lot. Well it was definitely a lot slower, I needed to put almost a grain and half more powder and it wouldn't shoot as good as the old lot. After that I never farted around buying anything less then 8lb kegs. I found that Varget is especially bad - the lots all look the same but they don't all burn the same! I am almost out of Varget and I am going to need to buy another 24lbs soon -- work up another load again.

p*terdobson said: The fast twist will work fine with the 250 gr. Scenars. They have tough, but uniform jackets. Adjust OAL for best results for your rifle. The new Lapua 300 grainers will be available in December. Regards, Peter

d*n belisle said: Thanks Peter, that's good to know. - dan

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