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the others for use in the AR-15 / .223? I know Win 748 has been a frontrunner for years. I know a lot of guys that have switched to N133, and Varget gets talked about a lot. But is there just one that most folks consider "Best" overall?? Thanks for your time.
 

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Varget

is a good bet. N133 is temperature sensitive. A heavy load that's OK in cooler weather can be a NO NO when it gets hot.
 

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Asking what powder is best is a lot like asking what oil is best on a vehicle related message board, whatever someone is using seems to be the "best"! I've done some good work using H335, AA2230C (surplus), AA2460 and I've loaded up some AA2520 to try, Varget works fairly well for me in 22-250 but it's a pain to meter, and for me...Varget is nothing special in 223.
 

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I can't add too much to what's already been talked about, but in addition to H-335, 748 and aa2230-C, I'd look at TAC and Exterminator, too. They are spherical powders, that meter well, and are supposed to be temperature tolerant, as well (a hard combo to master!)
For boltguns, I like Benchmark, and H-4895.
 

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It will depend on the caliber you are shooting.....

The biggest disapointment that I have had in powder selection is Varget. I have shot it in several 22/250's and several 243's and I have not been able to get tiny bug hole groups out of it with many bullet selections. In these same rifles, 4895 and 4064 did not group either which are kissing cousings to Varget.

The issue of temp sensitive seems to always come up. Until I started visiting the internet, I never knew there was a problem with powder being extremely temp sensitive while living in S.Ca and Arizona. While going on 4 p. dog hunts a year, I did realize an extreme problem of ammo being exposed to sunlight allowing the cases to get warm to the touch. The guys that live up North were it is so cold can teach the rest of us about Temp sensitive powders. They shoot in some very cold weather, then when the weather turns 75*, their cold weather loads produce way over max pressures.

Having lived in S.Ca, Arizona, and SC, I have not experienced the temp sensitive issue as much as the guys that live in Extremely cold weather have.
Having lived in more temperate climates, I am partial to Ball Powders when they will shoot with extreme accuracy.

When living in S. Ca, the temps were usually in the mid 70's or low 80's for most of the year. I then traveled to S. Dakota in the summer to shoot p. dogs when the temps got up in the 90's. My loads that I had developed with my 223 (748 powder), 6ppc (2230-S powder), 6 BR (H335 Powder), 22/250 AI
(Win 760 powder), 6/250 AI (Win 760), and 243 AI (760 Powder & AA2700). In all the cartridges above, the accuracy nodes that I shot was right at or near a Max load. In those days, I shot 15,000-25,000 rounds a year at ground squirrels, jack rabbits, chucks, coyotes, and p. dogs. Needless to say, barrels were on order almost all the time. I found out in a hurry that ball powders were easier on barrels than IMR 4064, H4895, and IMR 4350. It seems that the larger the kernel of powder the more errosive tendancies there is in barrel wear. Flame temp and duration of the Heat/Pressure is also a main issue.

I've got way off topic from the origional post. I have always thought that Guys that live in extreme Cold and then try and shoot in moderate temps in the mid 70's to low 80's are the guys that will teach the rest of us about
temp sensitive powders. The guys that live in the more moderate temps just have to use a little common sensense if/when they are shooting close to a max load. The guys that are shooting p. dogs have to learn to keep their ammo covered up.
 

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How About WC844 & WC846

Both are military pull down powders and I just imagine that one or both came from the .223's. I have shot some of the WC844 in .222 Mags and it does a
good job. Same reloading data for the WC844 as H335. I may be wrong, but,
I am of the opinion that Wicnhester made the WC Powders. I picked up my
WC Powder right after 9/11 and I think it was something like $48 for an 8 pound keg. It sure does a good job on Prairie Dogs. So, if this powder does
a good job in a .222 Mag, it should also work well in a .223. I don't know
about the availability now, but it sure beats $125 or more for an 8 lb keg !
 

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An AR15 is just a .223, and there are a whole bunch of powders that work in that cartridge. The reloading manuals list tons of them. I haven't messed with my AR for years, but it used to shoot the same powder/bullet combinations as the 14 and 12 twist bolt guns. With 55's, 748 worked well, but with 50's there were faster powders that worked better. To say that one is head and shoulders above the others might be a stretch. What gives best performance in your gun is what you'll want to use. I get outstanding accuracy and velocity with AA2015 and VV133 and VV135.....they're the best in my .223's. Other people have powders that they swear by. Some love Varget, but that stuff is too slow for a .223 unless it's with heavy bullets, it meters poorly, and it's never shot very well in anything for me. Luckily the .223 is really versatile and will shoot with a lot of different powders.
 

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Benchmark has been a winner for me shooting everything from 50 to 70 grainers.

Problem with Varget is everytime you open a new can with a different batch number, it's like having to developing a new load again. Varget seems to be great from a temperature sensitivity point but from batch to batch the consistency is VERY poor.
 

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Varget consistancy??

Problem with Varget is everytime you open a new can with a different batch number, it's like having to developing a new load again. Varget seems to be great from a temperature sensitivity point but from batch to batch the consistency is VERY poor.
Boy! You really hit it on the head! ;) I have had extreme variations in performance between batches of Varget, especially in a .308. It makes me think the "Extreme" in Varget refers, as you say, the extreme difference in performance between lots! That is one powder one wants to buy in 8# jugs.

But, even with a new lot and load work-up, I have experienced one batch of Varget that shot really tight little groups in my former VLS, never to quite be duplicated with subsequent batches.

Batch to batch variations keeps me trying to find other powders that work as well and avoiding Varget when possible. Sometimes Varget works best in a particular load, but I cringe when I see I'm down to the bottom of what was a good batch...and I hate that feeling of dread.:mad:

P.
 

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Once again, Keith....U give away secrets!

The guys that are shooting p. dogs have to learn to keep their ammo covered up.
I thought I was the only one that kept PD ammo in one of those little soft-side coolers, flap down and in the shade. I guess not!! It makes a huge difference beyond 300 yards in the "One Shot, One Kill' game!:D Just don't tell Mike Jones or Don M or Rick Fox... I might want to challenge them to a game of OSOK come next May!

P.
 

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i'm going to take a look at TAC......

meters well.........no need to trickle.
burns clean..........

good performance......
Temp insensitive........

also good for heavier bullets (69-80 224) if you like that in you AR.......

R
 

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Paul, if you think about it you'll remember that my loads never sit in the sun. They sit in the floor of whatever vehicle I happen to be using that day for drive bys. OSOK works for me, what's the prize???

Rick
 

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Wow, it looks like im a minority for Varget.... lol.....

I have had good results with Varget out of my AR but I have only used it with the 69gr Matchkings and I have only used it with one lot of powder. I may be in for a rude awakening when I buy my next can.
I have not had issues with different lots for my 22-250 as of yet. I have only used a couple of cans since its inception, I am not a high volume shooter as you tell.
 
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Of the Last 8, 1 lb Cannisters of Varget that I have used there has been no noticable difference in Lot to lot consistancy. This has improved in the last couple years. Varget shoots as good at 20 below as at 80. Although there is a noticable pressure increase at low temps. I shoot mostly heavy bullets, 60 to 80s.

Benchmark and 748 were two of the most temp sensitive powders that I have used.I routinely substitute Varget for RL-15 data. I shoot mostly heavy bullets, 60 to 80s.

V V N140 has also proven to be very good with the above range of projectiles.

In a nutshell, Varget is my choice for the best all around AR-15-223 powder for my application.
I load on a Dillon RL-550, and after a bit of polishing of the powder funnel, and a couple other tricks, will drop Varget well within + or - .1g
 

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The Ramshot powders Tac and x-t worked great in my Savage 10 in 223, they metered well and did not appear to have a problem. Varget worked better in my 243 than the 223. However I have not tried any powders other than Win white box in my bushmaster predator as it is way cheap for break in.
Jim
 

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Not Varget

There are many powders for the 223 that will outshoot Varget.
I had issues with Varget trying to get it to shoot 69gr SMK's in a Savage 12 BVSS.
Starting with 24.0 gr and increasing in 0.3gr steps, it looked as if the groups where getting tighter the higher I went. At 25.5gr, I managed a 1/4" group, 25.8 was still tight but at 26.0gr, I got about an inch vertical. At over 26.3 the groups were 3 inches.
Now there was NO indication of pressure, primers were still round and extraction was eazy. Velocity was around 2600fps.
As I was only shooting 100 and 200 matches, I shot 25.5gr untill the jug was empty.
For me there has to be a better powder than Varget.
I will persue that quest later but I got sidetracked with a 221FB and a couple CZ's in 222. More fun than that 12 lb Savage 223 which is now a 6BR and will shoot your eye out. :D
 

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Great ??? ....many answers....you know what I think of Varget (%&*#@%)...all of the 222 class ctgs are notorius for shooting good with the whole spectrum of powders from 130 to Rx-15 and the realllllllyyy sweet spot some where in the middle....(133-322 etc..) ....I do shoot a lil in cold weather ..haha....and have found the stick powders (extruded) to be less tempermental below freezing...((WW ball powders are very hard to lite up down around zero...a few yrs ago there was an incident of someone bear hunting up around the arctic circle and the ctgs. would not fire in a biggie (.458 I think ...with WW factory ball powder...the bear almost got HIM!!!) ...and it was cartoon like for a few seconds ...luckily the eskimo guide had a .243 with 4340 hand loads...!!!!......but I doubt that most folks will ever encounter such adverse conditions...the deterrent coating that makes ball powders easy on the bore also make it hard to lite up...that is why in the 50-60's everyone used "magnum" primers with that newfangled stuff!!...any how bak to ur ??? .....as someone stated on here earlier ...what works great in a bolt gun..((what I have did over the yrs.)) is not necessarily what is best for machine guns...the ball powders are slow to get goin and have a higer pressure curve aprox 1/2 way down the bbl....which helps a rattle gun function....so ball powders are the cats meow...(((must be why it has been so popular with the military..))) ...even though they are flirting with Hercules/Alliant powders recently....and it is becoming available as a pulled powder more commonly.....so if your shootin a benchrest rig 133 is pretty tough to beat....if you are poppin prarie dogs with a rattle gun ...shoot whatever ball mil. surpluss stuff ((cheep-$$$)) that you can get your hands on.........hope this helps....just my thoughts....Roger
PS,,,once you get a good 6mmBR you will throw evry thing else over the hill..!!!....If I would ever cross over to the dark side ..I think I would try a 6mmGrendell...the brass is a lil' pricy ..but ooooo they pack a punch a loooong way out there...
 
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