Reloading help please.

orchidmanorchidman Senior MemberPosts: 7,697 Senior Member
I have a packet of 20cal 45gr sp projectiles that I want to work up a load for the M77MKII 204.

Neither reloading book I have lists this particular bullet weight.

The latest ADI Powder ( Varget) reloading manual lists a 40gr bullet and then jumps straight to the 50gr selection. A google search hasn't helped with starting loads for the 45.


The starting load for the 40gr Hornady V-max is listed at 26gr of Varget powder with a max of 28.1gr ( compressed load).
The starting load for the 50gr Berger HPBT is listed at 24gr of Varget with a max load of 26gr. ( not compressed)

What I intended doing was averaging the above two starting loads and starting at 25gr of Varget............and work up to 27grs of powder. ( Maybe a bit more if there are no signs of pressure etc)

( I am working on the basis that the 45gr bullet is halfway between the 2 bullets listed and it would seem to be reasonable that starting and max loads would thus be halfway between those two loads.)


But.........being a careful little flightless bird, I thought I would check with those who have more experience at reloading than me.

BTW, I checked the Hornady website and they show the 45gr bullet as being 'Suspended'.............whatever that means.
Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....

Replies

  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 15,045 Senior Member
    I am not saying it is the right thing to do or that I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express. Nor am I saying that I am very smart. At all. What I would do is start at 25gr and work up to 27gr. That is how I would do it. But that's just me.
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 6,999 Senior Member
    Try starting at 24 grains, the minimum for the 50 grain bullet, 27 would probably be about max. That should keep you on the safe side.
  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,788 Senior Member
    The 8th Edition Hornady Reloading Manual lists the following:

    .204 45gr bullet

    Varget 22.4gr 3100 fps 26.7gr MAX 3600 fps COAL 2.245"

    It also lists
    TAC 21gr to 25.1gr
    H4895 21.1gr to 24.8gr
    RL15 21.3 gr to 26.5gr
    N140 22.1gr to 24.7
    WIN748 23.2gr to 27.3gr
    IMR 4320 23.4gr to 26.5gr
    A2520 23gr to 27gr


    D
    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,697 Senior Member
    Jermanator wrote: »
    I am not saying it is the right thing to do or that I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express. Nor am I saying that I am very smart. At all. What I would do is start at 25gr and work up to 27gr. That is how I would do it. But that's just me.

    I am in agreement that you are not saying it is the right thing to do and 'God forbid', I also do not either 'confirm or deny' staying at a Holiday Inn Express. Like you I also refuse to say whether I am very smart. As far as you saying what you would do, I place no weight on your statement that you would start at 25gr and work up to 27gr. If that's how you would do it I believe that is simply just a statement of what you would do and it will have no bearing on what future actions I will take.

    I have decided to modify my original intentions, and taking into account all the information available to me at this time, and in the future, in the interests of safety my decision is to start at 24grs and work up to 27, taking into account that a close inspection of each case will follow before proceeding to the next powder increment.

    Yes.........yes, that's what I may possibly do............unless I exercise my individuality and change my decision to something else.


    Edited to add: After posting the above, I have decided to amend my decision......in the interests of safety, and lower the starting load to 23grs.
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 4,422 Senior Member
    Alec,

    I don't own a .204, but I've been around a few. In the words of the esteemed Scooter (who knew a bit about the .204), the difference between "just right" and "Holy $%&*" is mere tenths of a grain.

    IOW, the difference between individual chambers in this tiny round makes for a parsnickety little beast to load for without careful workup. Consider all published data simply "suggestive".

    Mike
    Decisions have consequences, not everything in life gets an automatic mulligan.
    KSU Firefighter
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,656 Senior Member
    Wish I could help my brother from another mother. My fingers are too fat to load for something that tiny, so I haven't a clue. Sorry :tissue:
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • sarg1csarg1c Senior Member Posts: 1,705 Senior Member
    I load the. 204 -45 gr SP' My Hornady manual showed:
    22.4 gr Varget at3100 fps
    26.7 gr Varget at 3600 fps.
    Same as stated by BigDanS.
    This info was downloaded from their we sight.

    Also you may like the 39 gr sp.they perform well in my H/R Handy rifle.
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,697 Senior Member
    Linefinder wrote: »
    Alec,

    I don't own a .204, but I've been around a few. In the words of the esteemed Scooter (who knew a bit about the .204), the difference between "just right" and "Holy $%&*" is mere tenths of a grain.

    IOW, the difference between individual chambers in this tiny round makes for a parsnickety little beast to load for without careful workup. Consider all published data simply "suggestive".

    Mike

    Thanks Mike. I was thinking that with such a small case capacity it would be easy to make a mistake and end up with a 'Hold my beer and watch this' kind of moment.

    What I am going to do is start with 23grs of powder and work up in tenths with a close inspection every step of the way.
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 4,422 Senior Member
    On the upside, the .204 seems to have an "accuracy node" that crosses several timezones. Scooter was a speed-freak. He developed several .204 loads that were stellar in accuracy and fast enough for me, but the speed thing elicited a "meh" from him. IMO, "nearly warp-speed and drop them into half a dime" is pretty darn good. He, OTOH, thought differently. If it wasn't pushing the ragged edge, you'd not really accomplished much.

    Mike
    Decisions have consequences, not everything in life gets an automatic mulligan.
    KSU Firefighter
  • BuffcoBuffco Senior Member Posts: 6,243 Senior Member
    You top that case off, and push the bullet down snug. Never mind the powder weight.
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 4,422 Senior Member
    Buffco wrote: »
    You top that case off, and push the bullet down snug. Never mind the powder weight.

    With really, really tight neck tension. Don't forget that part.

    Mike
    Decisions have consequences, not everything in life gets an automatic mulligan.
    KSU Firefighter
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,697 Senior Member
    Buffco wrote: »
    You top that case off, and push the bullet down snug. Never mind the powder weight.

    Its not a 270.............where you need to cram the case full just to get it to the end of the barrel..............
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • sarg1csarg1c Senior Member Posts: 1,705 Senior Member
    Orchid man, I found that with many. 204 rifles were more accurate with the lighter bullets like the 32 -36 gr. Probably the riffling in the bore.I like the. 36-39 gr best but load the 45 gr. I like the soft point better than ballistic tip. They have better penetration before expansion. But this depends on the rifle of course.
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,697 Senior Member
    sarg1c wrote: »
    Orchid man, I found that with many. 204 rifles were more accurate with the lighter bullets like the 32 -36 gr. Probably the riffling in the bore.I like the. 36-39 gr best but load the 45 gr. I like the soft point better than ballistic tip. They have better penetration before expansion. But this depends on the rifle of course.

    Thanks for that sarge1c. Reason why I will persist with the 45gr soft point is that I believe it will be a good performer on Fallow deer. Once I have a load 'sorted' out I will start working on lighter projectiles for bunny/magpie busting. With factory Hornady 45gr loads I am getting sub .4" groups at 100m and last weekend, despite the less than ideal wind conditions, 2 out of 3 groups shot at 200m came in at less than 2".

    Funny thing is that, until I got the 204, I would have been very happy if this was one of my hunting rifles......because I have always preferred to stalk in to close range before taking a shot.
    But I enjoy this rifle/calibre so much, I want to see how much 'further' I can take it with hand loads.
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • BigDanSBigDanS Senior Member Posts: 6,788 Senior Member
    orchidman wrote: »
    But I enjoy this rifle/calibre so much, I want to see how much 'further' I can take it with hand loads.

    How did you ever make do with factory ammo? :jester:

    D
    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
    Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.... now who's bringing the hot wings? :jester:
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