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Old 05-26-2008, 09:44 AM   #1
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Another Reloading Question

When using bullets without a crimpimg groove, i.e., SMK or Hornady A-Max, what do you set your cartridge OAL at? Is there a general rule-of-thumb for the OAL?
TIA
Jon
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Old 05-26-2008, 03:53 PM   #2
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Re: Another Reloading Question

I try to seat my SMK's .020" off the lands....
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Old 05-26-2008, 06:08 PM   #3
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Jon,
What High Power Shooter is suggesting is generally good advice for match shooting ammo. But to do this properly and safely you need a tool like the Stoney Point cartridge length gage. You need the one with the curved shaft for the M1 Garand. Besides the gage, you also need one of their cartridge adapters in .30-06. The adapter is basically a .30-06 case that has been drilled and tapped in the base to fit their tool. With the bolt and follower out of the receiver you chamber the adapter with the bullet you are going to use in the neck and using the flexible shaft that runs through the tool, you advance the bullet until you feel it touch the riflings. You lock flexible shaft with a thumbscrew on the tool and withdraw the whole thing from the chamber. You can then measure the overall length of the case and bullet and subtract .020 to keep the bullet just off the lands when the round is chambered.

Whenever you are loading ammo for the M1 with a bullet you have not used before, you should check by chambering the loaded round with the bolt and follower removed to make sure it stops solidly in the chamber and comes back out without any resistance. Carefully inspect the bullet for any possible contact with the riflings. The bullet must not be jammed into the rifling or even tight up against the rifling before firing or pressures will be higher than normal.
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Old 05-26-2008, 06:23 PM   #4
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Re: Another Reloading Question

I tried using an empty, un-primed case and a bullet. I started the bullet into the case with the die, waaaaay oversize, then let the bolt snap shut on the round and withdrew the round and measured it with my calipers. It came out to somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.49. The lyman #49 manual says that 3.34 is the max oal. Should I just load to the max oal and call it a day? What is your oal? I measured some mil surp rounds and they measure around 3.325.
Thanks
Jon
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Old 05-27-2008, 03:04 AM   #5
 
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Quote:
I tried using an empty, un-primed case and a bullet. I started the bullet into the case with the die, waaaaay oversize, then let the bolt snap shut on the round and withdrew the round and measured it with my calipers. It came out to somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.49. The lyman #49 manual says that 3.34 is the max oal. Should I just load to the max oal and call it a day? What is your oal? I measured some mil surp rounds and they measure around 3.325.
Uh..... Better do it JAS's way there Bud.....

Best,
Swampy

Garands forever
2007 NRA Missouri State 600 yard Service Rifle Champion... with an M1
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Old 05-27-2008, 09:46 AM   #6
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Re: Another Reloading Question

For people that want to try 168gr SMK's out of their GI barreled Garands and they don't have a Stoney point gauge.. I simply reccomend 3.350"
It's a safe length and will show better accuracy than M2 Ball
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Old 05-27-2008, 10:22 AM   #7
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by musketjon
I tried using an empty, un-primed case and a bullet. I started the bullet into the case with the die, waaaaay oversize, then let the bolt snap shut on the round and withdrew the round and measured it with my calipers. It came out to somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.49. The lyman #49 manual says that 3.34 is the max oal. Should I just load to the max oal and call it a day? What is your oal? I measured some mil surp rounds and they measure around 3.325.
Thanks
Jon
Close... Just use your thumb and stuff the cartridge into the chamber. If it doesn't fall out on it's own, then it's jammed into the lands. Seat the bullet deeper and deeper in 0.005" increments till it drops out from gravity alone. Measure OAL, then subtract the 0.020" or whatever jump you want, and dial the seating die down till you get your -0.020" delta in OAL.

I find this to be quicker and more repeatable way of setting jump/OAL than using a dedicated tool. Accurate enough. My sizing die doesn't move and I can check the cartridge shoulder length to check what sort of error I'm introducing in my jump measurement due to shoulder position. I KNOW that my sized brass is just slightly smaller than the chamber, so the small amount of error is on the safe side.

I do have a bullet comparitor thingy that I also employ to measure/record the zero-jump length for each bullet flavor. Saves me a little time down the road and by keeping the data, I can make a rough estimate of how much TE has changed over time.

Some bullets just won't ever reach the lands while still fitting within the magazine.

I have found that bullets of a similar flavor will have the same ogive length when they're kissing the lands (i.e. the 155 and 168gr SMKs). And my seating die hardly changes between them.

Keep in mind that bullets vary at the tip from one to the next. So if you are only able to measure OAL (and not the ogive), then you will either need to repeat this whole thing the next time you need to set your seating die or you'll need to save that one particular bullet or use enough of a jump that the bullet to bullet variation isn't going to get you into pressure trouble.
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Old 05-27-2008, 04:17 PM   #8
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Thanks to all. This is exactly what I was looking for.
Jon
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Old 05-31-2008, 05:57 AM   #9
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Swampy, .30cal., I do a variation on the loose bullet deal that works as well as the Stoney-Point gauge. I size/deprime a case, open the caseneck a little more so it just holds the bullet. Then, I insert a 220grain softpoint backwards into the case leaving it long. I then insert it into the chamber until it's fully chambered and pull it out. The OAL gives me the point where the lands start and I set my bullet-seater to put the beginning of the ogive at that point minus ten-thousandths. Makes for a very accurate round.
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Old 06-05-2008, 01:23 AM   #10
 
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Re: Another Reloading Question

This experiment I posted on the CMP board might be of interest. Going by the barrels I measured it'd be tough, if not impossible, to seat a 168 or lighter bullet .020" off the lands of a GI barrel. Actually you could do it with a real low TE but the bullet would hanging so far out it'd be impractical to magazine feed it through the rifle.

Here's the link. http://www.odcmp.org/new_forum/topic...earchTerms=oal



Also did some checking on the various 308 chambers I have. I was quite surprised the Douglas barrel on my 308 Garand was noticably tighter than a new Remington. Well, not that surprised.
I'm thinking that based on my limited project if a shooter wants to load .020" off the lands and still have a cartridge OAL that's practical.....you'll need to go with a commercial barrel. You guys will probably be aware of exceptions but I'm thinking that generally speaking I'm in the ballpark with my thoughts.

http://www.odcmp.org/new_forum/topic...earchTerms=oal
http://www.odcmp.org/new_forum/topic...earchTerms=oal
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Old 06-06-2008, 05:50 PM   #11
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Re: Another Reloading Question

"...measured some milsurp rounds..." A 150 grain bullet will give a bit shorter OAL than a 168 or 175 grain match bullet. I've always set the length to the max, using no special tools other than a vernier, given in my manual and have never had any problems.
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Old 06-09-2008, 04:13 PM   #12
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Again,
Thanks to All.
Jon
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Old 06-17-2008, 04:27 PM   #13
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Re: Another Reloading Question

I am knew at reloading so can someone tell me what the ogive is....

So if you are only able to measure OAL (and not the ogive), you have to start all over...what is the ogive and how do you measure it.

Thanks
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Old 06-17-2008, 07:11 PM   #14
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Re: Another Reloading Question

The ogive is the curve of the projectile between the point and the body.
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Old 06-18-2008, 04:08 AM   #15
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Re: Another Reloading Question

Great thanks. I just looked it up in one of my many reloading books, just what you said.

thanks guys...happy shooting.
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