The mini reloading & ammo thread

Discussion in 'Mini-14 Forum' started by 51colt, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    What do you guys think about having Mini reloading thread? A place were you can share your favorite Mini loads and discuss COL, primers and cartage crimp or any thing else that has worked well for you. Keep in mind my Mini is a 197 series with a thin barrel but might shoot well in the new Minis. Who knows? I will start the thread with some of my favorite loads. Please don't load any of my loads or any other loads posted on the internet with out backing them up from another source like a bullet or powder manufacturer or a loading manual. As a rule i don't shoot max loads i stay a little under and work up to them. Better to be safe than sorry. High end loads can get dangerous in a hurry.

    I will start the thread out with some of the loads that have worked out well for me. For most part a lot i have had the best results seating the bullets so that they fill the whole case neck and are at or shorter than 2.260 with the exception is the 69gr Sierra HPBT it worked well for me at 2.235. I have been using a lee LFCD adjusted i/2 turn past when it touches the shell holder.

    This is my old stand by load. 52 or 53gr Hornady or Sierra plain base HP bullets BT bullets are ok if that is all you can find. I use IMR 4064 powder 24.6 gr you can play with that and see what your mini likes.

    69gr Sierra HPBT bullet and 23.8gr H335 COL 2.235

    55gr Nosler BT 24.8gr H335 COL 2.260 (tri70s load)

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    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 17, 2012
  2. hawkguy

    hawkguy Well-Known Member

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    although i am not a reloader, i think this is a great idea. it could be real benefit to the mini forum imo.

    a reloading thread specific to the mini should be a sticky imo. if it gets much attention, i will ask the mods to make a sticky out of it.

    also, a thread on the most succesful factory ammo might help out us poor guys who don't reload.
     

  3. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    Thanks hawkguy, One nice thing i am noticing about this forum is there a lot of people that want to shoot better not a bunch of know it alls. It does not hurt that a lot of these guys know Minis really well. I think there is a lot we can learn from one and other. Be leave me i can use all the help i can get.

    I think your idea for a factory ammo thread is a good idea. When i was shooting factory ammo that was a long time a go about eight years a go the best store bought was American Eagle 50gr flat bottom and i tried every kind of factory ammo i could find or afford ( i am financially challenged) :D.
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  4. TLuker

    TLuker New Member

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    That's two great ideas!!! I just made my first loads for the mini so I can't really contribute much, other than Accurate 2460 at 24gr is much weaker than factory loads and didn't perform very well (580 series mini). I've got three loads to try right now:

    Accurate 2460 24.5gr
    Accurate 2460 25gr.
    IMR 4064 25gr.

    All with Speer Hot Core 55gr soft point. Hopefully I'll know how they perform Friday.

    So far I haven't been impressed with the Accurate 2460. It dispenses great (it's ball powder) and is perfect for a progressive press, but I haven't seen any good groups from it. My buddy tried a can for his .308 and gave up on it. I'm trying his can to see if I can get a good load for the mini.

    IMR 4064 has been spectacular in my .308 but doesn't dispense well (stick). I can't wait to see how it shoots in the mini. :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2012
  5. tri70

    tri70 New Member

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    I like the Nosler manual information on some of the best powders they used but most applies to bolt guns. The service rifle data in most manuals don't list 55 gr loads, usually 69 and up.
    I found that 55 gr fmj like a shorter COL, I have some Hornady loads that I use 2.230 with my favorite powder.
     
  6. masterPsmith

    masterPsmith New Member

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    I usually don't list any of my loads for anything on open forums unless it is required for a competitive shoot, but I have posted this one before, so here goes.

    This is my match load for my Mini which has a 1 in 7 twist barrel. It shoots sub MOA in my rifle. I load these and all match rounds on a single stage press and powder charges are weighed, not dropped from a measure.

    .223 Remington
    Lake City Brass trimmed to 1.758"
    Winchester SR primers
    24.0gr IMR-4895 powder
    Sierra 69gr HPBT Match bullets seated to an OAL of 2.250".
    I also use a light crimp.

    My case neck expander ball is also slightly undersize for a tight grip on bullets for use in semi auto rifles.


    Jim........................
     
  7. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    Hawkguy, I was looking around at Midway Hornady makes ammo with a bullet that shoots very well in my Mini for people that don't hand load i think it would be worth trying. Heck i want to try it. http://www.midwayusa.com/product/11...e-max-ammunition-223-remington-55-grain-z-max
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  8. hawkguy

    hawkguy Well-Known Member

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    thanks, 51! are thse any different than the v-max series? i have used hornady v-max with great results in my mini, in fact, it seems to be the ammo my mini groups best with (it is also the ammo i used on the challenge). i have had very good success with black hills match ammo as well. i also had some 50 gr federal hollow points that grouped pretty well, but not as good as the hornady.

    on a surprising note, i was plinking with remington umc and putting together 2-3" groups last time i shot. i was kind of happy with its accuracy for a target round. the bulk federal didn't seem to shoot near as well, just from casual observations.

    my mini seems to like 55 grain bullets, i have never ventured out much, except to shoot some 5.56 62 grain penetrator ammo and m193 ball....both of which didnt produce good results. one of these days i need to try a heavier grain match bullet.
     
  9. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    There is a really good bench rest shooter at the range were i shoot he has taken me under his wing he gave me five of his 55g z max hand loads to try. My mini shot them very well infact it was one of my challenge targets. He also gave me 5 of his 40gr z max loads to try they also shot very well. The z max bullets cost about half what the nosler bt bullets cost. You need a lee loading kit bad. they cost about 125.00. We can get you reloading here on the forum.
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  10. TLuker

    TLuker New Member

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    You say Lee, I say RCBS (but I do love the Lee crimping die!!!).:D

    Hawkguy or anyone else even considering reloading, go for it. I just started reloading at the beginning of this year, but I always knew I would be reloading one day. I finally pulled the trigger so to speak and I'm really glad I did. I've been surprised at how enjoyable it is to just work up some brass or try new loads. I wished I had started years ago. :)
     
  11. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    I bought a Lee kit 10yr ago to try reloading i thought if i liked it i would upgrade. I like my Lee press so much i have never wanted to up grade. I did buy a little digital scale, pan funnel, Rcbs powder thrower ( i do like the Lee powder thower for stick powder) and set of Lee dipers.
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  12. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A friend is a target shooter and he uses Varget. I have used both Varget and H335 with good results.
     
  13. TLuker

    TLuker New Member

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    My buddy found a great deal on a Lee kit and went that route, and I found a great deal on an RCBS kit. There are little things I like about each one, but both work great. I've got accessories from both as well. It's all individual preference, and whether you like green or red.:)
     
  14. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    Lets talk powder. Some of the most popular powders for a Mini 14 are H335, Varget, and AA2230. For me IMR 4064 has been the best all round powder my Mini. Ed Haris likes 4198 and H322 for the mini and what about Varget and 8208XBR. Last week at the range i was given five 55gr Z Max loaded with Tac powder. They shot very well i am going to buy Tac powder to work with it more. With powder costing 30.00 a pound it makes it hard to try a new powder and you have to be sure before buy a 4 or 8lb container were you can really save some money. It would be great if everyone had a buddy that was a reloader so you could go in half's on powders to try. A month ago i was at Shields in Reno they had sample packs of Nosler BT bullets i thought what a great idea. A week later i ordered 250 of these Bullets. What if all bullet and powder manufactures did this it would be a win win for everyone. Wouldn't be great to be able to go buy 20 bullets and a 1/4 pound of powder to try.
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  15. tri70

    tri70 New Member

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    I have been using RL7 & 10 and I buy in bulk for powder that works well. I came across a deal on 8 lbs of IMR4895, it does good. I have a big can of Varget but it does not shoot well in my minis, it works great in my Savage Stevens bolt tho with 25.5 grs
    I have tried the new Alliant Varmint powder and it works as well as H335, it looks the same and meters well.
     
  16. TLuker

    TLuker New Member

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    Here's a big thumbs up for IMR 4064. I've got to do some more shooting before I can say it's "the powder", but with the few rounds I've shot so far its looking like it's "the powder" for my mini!!!!:)
     
  17. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    I have had good results with 4064. Until i came to this forum i thought i was the only guy loading for Minis with it. Keep me in the loop on how it is working for you.
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  18. tri70

    tri70 New Member

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    I have also shot AA2015 with good results, another fast burning powder for 223 but not as common as other powders. I saw some at a lgs and tempted to try again.
     
  19. 51colt

    51colt New Member

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    tri you have my interest on AA2015 powder i have been looking around for it.
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  20. tri70

    tri70 New Member

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    Steve shot a great group with this powder and his mini 30. Now I need to find some, one lgs is going out of business, I need to check their stock.