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  #61  
Old 09-06-2013, 10:35 PM
TLARbb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlong View Post
Houston is correct. If you want super accuracy you have to reload. I do not own a 204, but from what Iv'e heard its a great cartridge, but I also heard its a cartridge you have to reload for if you want accuracy. Otherwise your just wackin' it, as they say.
May be, but my Savage 25 shoots the 39 grain Federal into bug holes at 100 yards and into less than 2" at 325 yards (the longest shot in a safe direction in my backyard). It shoots that load so well that I have been wondering if I can match it. I'll have to (maybe) because Federal changed the load to a Nosler from the Sierra a while ago. I haven't shot any of the Nosler loading so don't know about it. I'm set up to reload for it, but probably won't until I am nearly out of the Federal Premium I'm using now.

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  #62  
Old 09-07-2013, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by TLARbb View Post
May be, but my Savage 25 shoots the 39 grain Federal into bug holes at 100 yards and into less than 2" at 325 yards (the longest shot in a safe direction in my backyard). It shoots that load so well that I have been wondering if I can match it. I'll have to (maybe) because Federal changed the load to a Nosler from the Sierra a while ago. I haven't shot any of the Nosler loading so don't know about it. I'm set up to reload for it, but probably won't until I am nearly out of the Federal Premium I'm using now.

EJ
I am sure you can beat any factory ammunition by hand loading your own. No two rifles shoot best with exactly the same load. Factory loads are designed for some kind of imaginary average rifle, not your rifle.

Tenths of grains of powder can make a huge difference in accuracy. When I had my Ruger No. 1 in 220 Swift, everyone said that rifle and cartridge combination could not be very accurate. Shooting first with Winchester factory loads, I began to believe them. That is until I started hand loading and immediately got better results. Eventually, I found the perfect load and started shooting under a half inch 5-shot 100 yard groups and 1" groups at 200 yards.



At the start of load development, I was so convinced my rifle could not be that accurate I was sure I had completely missed a 200 yard target with one shot, only to walk up to the target and see that shot was hidden in the black at dead center. I had to shoot a couple of groups with witnesses, before the guys would believe a Ruger No. 1 could be that accurate.

A decent bolt action 204 should (with proper load development) be more accurate than my Swifty.
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  #63  
Old 12-16-2013, 12:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Onearm View Post
I am sure you can beat any factory ammunition by hand loading your own. No two rifles shoot best with exactly the same load. Factory loads are designed for some kind of imaginary average rifle, not your rifle.

Tenths of grains of powder can make a huge difference in accuracy. When I had my Ruger No. 1 in 220 Swift, everyone said that rifle and cartridge combination could not be very accurate. Shooting first with Winchester factory loads, I began to believe them. That is until I started hand loading and immediately got better results. Eventually, I found the perfect load and started shooting under a half inch 5-shot 100 yard groups and 1" groups at 200 yards.



At the start of load development, I was so convinced my rifle could not be that accurate I was sure I had completely missed a 200 yard target with one shot, only to walk up to the target and see that shot was hidden in the black at dead center. I had to shoot a couple of groups with witnesses, before the guys would believe a Ruger No. 1 could be that accurate.

A decent bolt action 204 should (with proper load development) be more accurate than my Swifty.
Indeed that has been my experience with everything else I own and may be the case with my .204 as well. I have to admit though that looking at the groups we've gotten with the Federal load in this rifle, I wonder if it will be easy to do.

In the past I have taken factory ammunition apart and weighed each powder charge and "remanufactured" the ammo using the same components and the same average weight for the powder charge (using the powder salvaged out of the original factory loads) and they would shoot significantly better after being reassembled than the control groups shot with the same lot of factory loads in the same rifle.

So, yes, in general I agree with you. If it shoots any better with my handloads, no body will be able to take it away from me while I am alive. I won't need it after I'm gone, but I'll miss it.

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  #64  
Old 12-16-2013, 02:51 AM
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Originally Posted by TLARbb View Post
In the past I have taken factory ammunition apart and weighed each powder charge and "remanufactured" the ammo using the same components and the same average weight for the powder charge (using the powder salvaged out of the original factory loads) and they would shoot significantly better after being reassembled than the control groups shot with the same lot of factory loads in the same rifle.

EJ
There is no reason to expect the powder that comes in a factory load will prove to be the best for your rifle. Using information in a Lyman Handloading manual as a safety check, I tried many different powders, loads. primers, bullets and seating depths in testing for my .220 Swift, eventually settling on 37.5 grains of IMR 4064, CCI 200 Large Rifle Primers, Berger 55 gr. Target/Varmint bullets and an OAL of 2.75". That cartridge design, with those components is specific to my rifle. If I bought another rifle in .220 Swift, I would need to start all over again.

Last spring, I took delivery of a fine benchrest rifle in .222 Remington. I went through the same testing procedures to develop a highly accurate load specific to that rifle. Now I am about to take delivery of a Ruger No. 1A also in .222 Remington. When it arrives, I will again need to conduct extensive load testing for that rifle. There is no reason to expect the best load for my benchrest .222 will be the best load for the new Ruger. Even the best powder for the Ruger will probably be different.

For me, load development and hand crafting ammunition, is one of the most enjoyable part of owning centerfire rifles. Once I finally start regularly getting one hole groups at 100 yards, I tend to get a bit bored, sell the rifle, buy another and start all over again. I think I may stick with the 222s though. The accuracy is amazing. Now I am searching for the 0.000" 5-shot/100 yard group. That means I will never be done, until they start shoveling dirt on my grave.
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  #65  
Old 01-15-2014, 12:46 AM
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If you decide to go with the .204 Ruger round, I would (and did) get a Ruger Rifle, and use Hornady ammo since these are the two players who developed this round. 4225FPS with factory ammo!
Awsome!
STW
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  #66  
Old 01-15-2014, 01:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun Tzu warrior View Post
If you decide to go with the .204 Ruger round, I would (and did) get a Ruger Rifle, and use Hornady ammo since these are the two players who developed this round. 4225FPS with factory ammo!
Awsome!
STW


Sounds awesome in theory that is (4225fps)...but the fact is that most shoot best/most accurate at around 3650-3750 fps. The factory loads in each of the 3 guns that I tested them in were acceptable but NOT MOA...too fast...too squirrly...I had one gun that shot 35 gr. best and the other 39 was the best with their pet hand load recipe.
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  #67  
Old 01-15-2014, 02:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaser View Post
Sounds awesome in theory that is (4225fps)...but the fact is that most shoot best/most accurate at around 3650-3750 fps. The factory loads in each of the 3 guns that I tested them in were acceptable but NOT MOA...too fast...too squirrly...I had one gun that shot 35 gr. best and the other 39 was the best with their pet hand load recipe.
As I mentioned in another thread, factory ammunition is almost always loaded to the maximum safe pressure. This is almost never the most accurate load. As I have pointed out, my Ruger No. 1 220 Swift shot 1.5" at 100 yards with factory ammunition and .5" with my handload at 3800 fps.

For technical details on the 204 Ruger and other 20s, check out this article in Accurate shooter:
http://www.accurateshooter.com/cartr...des/20caliber/

If you scan down the page, you will come to a table of suggested powder loads for 204 Ruger. I have learned a lot from reading articles in the Accurate Shooter site.
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