178 grain Hornady A-Max in .308 Rifle

This is a discussion on 178 grain Hornady A-Max in .308 Rifle within the Cartridges & Calibers forums, part of the Sniping Related category; Gentlemen, ROB 01, I would particularly like to hear from you on this one. I know you will have the answere. Talk to me about ...

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  1. #1
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    178 grain Hornady A-Max in .308 Rifle

    Gentlemen,

    ROB 01, I would particularly like to hear from you on this one. I know you will have the answere.

    Talk to me about loading the Hornady 178 grain A-Max bullet in the .308 Winchester. My rifle has a 1 turn in 12" twist rate and a 26" barrel. Will it be able to handle this bullet. I have plenty of RL-15 powder to start with. My rifle likes the 175 grain SMK with 43.1 grains of RL-15 with no pressure signs. But I couldn't find any SMK's today. This is the only match bullet my supplier had on hand.

    I need some recipes.

    Sincerely,
    Dave (Bubba) Thornblom

  2. #2
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    My 175 and 178 loads are the same. You could drop it a little if you want and work back up but if you don't have pressure with the 175 i doubt you will with the 178

    Also try to load it out to about .010" off the lands. This may not be possible in some factory tubes and still have the round fit in the internal mag though.

    I use Varget with my 178s in my .308.

  3. #3
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    Thanks ROB 01,

    Pardner, you are fast. I only posted this 10 minutes ago. My rifle is a Remington 700 VSF and it has a loooong throat. With the Hornady 168 grain hpbt match bullet, 2.958" COL is touching the lands. My magazine will only handle COL of about 2.825" to 2.830". So, the only way I can get close to the lands is single loading and forget the magazine. Well, that is basically the way I shoot anyway. I may try some at 2.825 " just for grins and then some at 2.925" to see how much bullet is still in the case neck.

    Thanks again and feel free to jump in anytime you feel the need.

    Sincerely,
    Dave (Bubba) Thornblom

  4. #4
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    Thornbloom,

    I've shot the 178's with good luck from my Rem.700P .308 1-12" twist w/26" barrel. Like Rob, I use the same load in the 178's that I do in my 175's 43.5gr. of Varget. My rifle prefers the 175's and 178's over 168's or 155's except for the Lapua Scenars.


    B
    Customized .308 Rem700P / NF 5.5-22x50mm MLR
    .308 Savage 10FP / NF 5.5-22x50mm MLR
    .308 Savage BA / NF 5.5-22x56mm MLR
    .338 lapua mag. Dakota Arms T-76 Longbow / NF 5.5-22x56mm MLR

  5. #5
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    Hey Brainz,

    How are your groups? I mean which bullet shoots the tighter groups for you, the 175 SMK or the 178 Amax?

    My rifle has the same preferences as yours, it hates 155 smk's, does good with 168 smk's and 175 smk's. I can get by with the 168 grain Hornady hpbt, but it still does better with the smk. I am looking forward to trying these 178 Amaxes.

    My potential load looks like this:

    Case: Federal Military .308, full length sized, trimmed to 2.005"
    Primer: CCI-Br2
    Powder: 43 grains of RL-15, each charge individually weighed
    Bullet: 178 grain Hornady Amax
    COL: 2.825"
    Approximate Muzzle Velocity: 2650 ft/sec

    I will try them out this coming weekend, hopefully.

    Sincerely,
    Dave (Bubba) Thornblom

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by thornblom
    Hey Brainz,

    How are your groups? I mean which bullet shoots the tighter groups for you, the 175 SMK or the 178 Amax?

    My rifle has the same preferences as yours, it hates 155 smk's, does good with 168 smk's and 175 smk's. I can get by with the 168 grain Hornady hpbt, but it still does better with the smk. I am looking forward to trying these 178 Amaxes.

    My potential load looks like this:

    Case: Federal Military .308, full length sized, trimmed to 2.005"
    Primer: CCI-Br2
    Powder: 43 grains of RL-15, each charge individually weighed
    Bullet: 178 grain Hornady Amax
    COL: 2.825"
    Approximate Muzzle Velocity: 2650 ft/sec

    I will try them out this coming weekend, hopefully.

    Sincerely,
    Dave (Bubba) Thornblom

  7. #7
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    Hey Dave,

    At 100m (my zero) they both hold .33moa with how I have them loaded. My load is similar to yours. I go with:

    case length 2.005"
    primer: cci br-2
    powder: Varget
    grains: 43.5gr
    case: Lapua
    OAL: 2.910" (my Rem. has a Long throat)

    As I get out further say 600m the 178's are a tad better. Then again I've only shot 50 rounds total from 400 to 600m. I have 20 left and will see how they compare at 1,000m when it's not 100deg outside. Just too hot to shoot right now for me. I work outside in the heat all day and when I get home I've wanted to stay in the AC the past few days. I'll try to get out Saturday. If I do I'll post or send you a PM.
    My rifle does love the 155gr Lapua Scenar with 45.3gr of Varget. The Lapua Scenar is much longer than the 155gr SMK Palma, and has a different ogive.
    Anyway, I'll let you know what happens at longer range with the 178.

    B
    Customized .308 Rem700P / NF 5.5-22x50mm MLR
    .308 Savage 10FP / NF 5.5-22x50mm MLR
    .308 Savage BA / NF 5.5-22x56mm MLR
    .338 lapua mag. Dakota Arms T-76 Longbow / NF 5.5-22x56mm MLR

  8. #8
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    OK ROB 01,

    I tried the 178 grain A MAX with 43 grains of RL-15. It does pretty good but like everybody says, that powder is still temp sensitive. I now have some Varget, so what charge weight? 43? 43.5? 44? I am open to suggestions. Brainz uses 43.5 grains of Varget. I also have some IMR-8208-XBR but I heard it is not too good with the heavier bullets, just 155's and 168's.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated.

    Sincerely,
    Dave (Bubba) Thornblom

  9. #9
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    I run 44-44.5 of varget in winchester brass pretty regular. If you have thicker brass like lake city or lapua, I'd start lower than that. I'm sure you know that just because someone says it on here, doesn't mean its safe in your rifle.

    43.5 of varget in win brass seems to be a winning recipe for lots of folks.

  10. #10
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    I'd start around 43grns and work up. 45 is the listed max but depending on brass used you might not make it there.

    I use 45grns in my Win brass and 44.2grns in my Lapua brass to get the same velocity so you can see that brass will impact final charge.

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