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Reloading .223 for AR's
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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slimjim
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 6:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Sweet! Especially, when the shooter is in directly involved in the results! Great shooting, Dawgdad!!

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 10:19 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Sorry...

Gotta push this back to the top. What's changed in the 9 years (holy crap) since this thread was started?

Slim has a press now and crimps all his loads, but what else???

I started prepping brass way back when, but never did work up any loads for my OLD AR (Bushmaster Dissipator).

A new Ruger might have found it's way into my life. IF it did, it might look something like this:

ruger.com/products/ar5.../8514.html

Looking through my brass drawer, I have somewhere around 2500 pieces of .223/5.56 brass, in various stages of prep.

New powders, processes, bullets...

Talk to me AR Guys...

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 4:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I am no expert (ex as in has been and spert is a drip under pressure) but I am in the process of working up a load for my AR. I use Hodgdon H335 because it meters so nice and seems to be a very popular powder for the 556/223.
My choice of bullet is the 55 grain FMJBT not crimped
The primer is CCI400
The most accurate load I have found in my 20" AR is 25.7 grains of H335.
Average Velocity: 3145.28
Standard Deviation: 27.61
Aggregate group size (4 x 5 rounds each) is .86" at 100 yards

I heard that the powder is better with a magnum primer so I have some loads from 24.7 to 25.7 loaded for more tests.
The best load above is good enough but I am going to see if I can't squeeze the groups a bit more. Wink

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 6:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

hunterjoe21 wrote:
Slim has a press now and crimps all his loads, but what else???

I've turned into a 6.8mm SPC fanatic. I'm shwacking hogs at night. I just built a 224 Valkyrie. I haven't done any load development but shot it today in a sniper match at ranges from 50 to 1000 yards including shooting from roof, helo (on a cliff overlooking a quarry), a boat, and through cars. I'm stocked. I came in 3rd!

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 9:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I'm planning to try some CFE 223 and have around 2000 Federal AR Match primers. I also have a box of 500 Hornady 55 grain SP W/C bullets I got on sale last year. Next time I get to the store, I'll probably pick up some Hornady 55 grain FMJ's just for S&G's. I also have quite a few 52 grain Sierra MatchKing bullets I've been loading for my .22-250. With a 1:8" twist, I should probably try a slightly heavier bullet too.

I'm planning a fairly simple varmint rig outta this thing. I don't shoot competition, but once I get on some prarie dogs, I need decent accuracy.

I slapped a Burris PEPR mount on it and, once I lapped the mount, I attached an old Burris Fullfield II 3-9x40 to it. Using Federal XM193 ammo, 5 shot groups aren't MOA, but I was ringing the 300 yard gong with it fairly regularly.

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Vince
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 10:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

HJ, sounds like you have a good stock of bits and pieces mate. If you can find them, I’d have a look at some 62gr projectiles...they are supposed to be well suited to the 1:8 twist barrels. I think, from memory, they are a Remington offering in FMJ.

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

My rifle has a 1:9 twist and I got no accuracy out of the 62 grain bullets at all. I didn't get tumbling but they just would not group at all. I only tried two powders but I would have thought that somewhere I should have seen a tendency to make a group.
I am real happy with the 55 grain bullets and they are inexpensive when bought in bulk.

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Sparkie
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:37 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

I've had the best luck with IMR-4198 and IMR-3031, not barn burners but accurate. 62gr SS109's are not all that accurate no matter what powder your using.
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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2019 6:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

With a direct-impingement gas gun the pressure curve can make a difference regarding function.

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:21 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Pumpkinslinger wrote:
With a direct-impingement gas gun the pressure curve can make a difference regarding function.

That's one of my concerns and something I'm having trouble wrapping my feeble brain around.
Will listed minimum powder charges cause issues with the rifle's function?
Are published load data good for both bolt action and semi- auto rifles?

Guess I'll find out soon...I grabbed a couple pounds of CFE 223, dug out some Varget and found a bottle of BL-C(2) I forgot I had. Also discovered that my efforts at primer pocket "swaging" were substandard on the LC brass I have when primers wouldn't seat, then managed to bend the rod on the die when I tried to redo it. Shoulda re-read the instructions first.

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2019 7:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

HJ, what swage tool do you have. I have an RCBS tool and the instructions are deficient. You powders are fine as well as the load data. I use the upper half of the load data. You will have no problem with direct impingement.

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2019 10:48 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

slimjim wrote:
HJ, what swage tool do you have. I have an RCBS tool and the instructions are deficient.

Slim,

I have the same tool from RCBS. Instead of adjusting the die body, I moved the swaging rod and bent it. I picked up a Lyman primer pocket reamer yesterday

www.lymanproducts.com/...amer-lg-sm

It seems to do a good job removing the crimp, but I was always somewhat hesitant to remove material from my brass. it fits in my RCBS Trim Mate case prep device, so I won't aggravate my arthritis using it.

My first attempts at loading for this rifle weren't too bad. I loaded 60 pcs of R-P brass I had with CFE 223 and Hornady 55 gr FMJ W/C bullets. The best accuracy seemed to come from loads near the book max (27.4 gr). I'm still not MOA with 5 shot groups, but 3 shot groups are there.

The gun functioned perfectly with the 6 different powder charges I tried, so I'll continue down this path without too much concern with functionality.

Varget and BL-C(2) are next up, once I finish prepping my LC brass.

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slimjim
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2019 11:13 am    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

RCBS will likely replace the swage rod. If not, still get another rod. I'll walk you through the proper steps to remove the crimp (the instructions are not sufficient). I found the reamer didn't always get them out.

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hunterjoe21
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2019 7:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Some photos:



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My rifle
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slimjim
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2019 7:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Reloading .223 for AR's Reply with quote

Looking good, HJ!

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