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Will Varget meter well with a 550? If not, what should I try?

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I'm getting ready to set up a quick change assembly for .223rem. With my single stage press I was using Varget, but the Dillon manual says extruded powders may not work very well.

What's your experience been with Varget in a 550 powder drop?

What powders do meter well?

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I use H-4895 which is very similar. When you charge a case, wait a second or two before you lower the ram. This gives it time to completely empty the powder. It is very accurate when you give it that time.

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I've been able to get +/- 0.1 gr with a standard Dillon powder drop and Varget. For me, that is fine. Others have said they can't get it to throw +/- 1.0 gr.

Youngeyes is right. The technique is the important part. Consistent smooth operation will get you the best results.

One guy here has gone to the effort of polishing the inside of the drop to a mirror surface. Deburing all the edges and such. I didn't need to do that but he did.

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I have not been as fortunate at warpspeed. While I can consistently stay within variances of +/- .1gr with other types of powders I get the occasional .3 variances with Varget no matter how smooth and consistent I am with the handle.

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I'm running AR-COMP through my 550 powder measure to load .223 and have had positive results. Kernel size is similar to Varget. Most charges are within .1 - .2gr, but there is an occasional .3 that sneaks in there. I'm loading for CMP/NRA service rifle, so as long as my ammo will hold 2MOA, I'm OK.

Polishing up the internals on the powder measure helps. As mentioned, a consistent stroke on the handle is key. I add a 'tap' on the measure at the top and bottom of each stroke to help prevent bridging and help charges settle.

Probably the most helpful thing that I've done is remove the sizing step to keep a nice smooth press stroke. All my .223 brass is sized on a single stage first, then run through the Dillon where it is primed, powder dropped and bullet seated.

Edited by nbkky71

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My experience mirrors young eyes and warp speed. I really like Varget. It's the first powder unused with Heavy .224 bullets and it is supremely consistent. I load it using the standard Dillon measure. It sounds like corn flakes in the measure, but steady technique produces great results.

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Try some H335...it was developed for the 223/556 and meters excellent in the Dillon powder measures.

On the Hodgden website... "Originated as a military powder, used for the 5.56 NATO, or 223 Remington as handloaders know it."

Edited by Mark R

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I had an #8 jug of Varget from when I was loading 308 so it was my obvious first choice. I also had a small mount of H4895 and played with that too. After trying some Benchmark and CFE 223 I just loved the way CFE 223 metered and the tighter groups I was getting compared to the other three. So, for me it's CFE 223.

Look at what Hodgdon list for load data.

http://www.hodgdon.com/

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it will work just fine in a 550. It will work better for loading into .30 then .22 as the funnel is larger. I run surplus 4895 with 62g as my junk ammo and on occasion a few grains of powder fall out. Not an issue for what im asking of the ammo. you can polish the funnel and that will help. You can also pause when the case if fully raised and five the press handle a little consistent tap each time to knock any bridged powder loose.

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Thanks guys. I just got a pound of cfe-223 to try. I've also got some Benchmark, but have never used it.

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H335, TAC or Winchester 748 work great in my 550 and 650 for loading bulk 55 gr bullets for my ARs, Heavier bullets that I use with Varget I use a automatic powder measure.

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Tac or 8208xbr for heavier and H335 or CFE223 for 50-55 gr

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I was ± 0.2 gr. for Varget out of the Dillon measure. I switched to BL-C(2) and get ±0.02 now. Been using that for my primary load for years.

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Varget doesnt meter well out of the Dillon powder measure. I use XBR8208 and it meters much more consistent then Varget. I have heard XBR8208 called a shorter cut Varget. They have similar properties except one meters great and the other one is inconsistent.

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Why worry about VarGet metering when it can't even be found?

Because I have a shitload of it...

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I think you'll like the CFE 223. My Varget will be saved for 308, I didn't like the groups from Benchmark but really liked the CFE. Plus, when you want to push it there's room to spare so no compressed loads needed.

55NoslerCFE_zpsslnscide.jpg

49%20points%20at%20100%20yards_zpsslnzxo

Edited by LikesToShoot

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Many high power shooter (NRA/CMP cross course) load their short line (200/300yd) with 77g SMK and Varget on a 550B. Works fine. Most people weigh the 600yd loads, but I've hear of a few Master class shooters who use a 550 too, maybe for club matches.

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Here's a varget related problem I encountered with my 650 over the weekend.

I'm loading up some .223 with varget. I find it to be very consistent, +/- .01g variance.

However, every 20 or so drops it spills powder all over everything when indexing to the next case. It's like it's bridging at the mouth and not dropping into the case.

I took the powder measure apart, re-set up per the manual and it keeps doing it.

Anyone else experience this? Is it a byproduct of the powder or something I'm doing wrong?

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One of the tricks the Highpower shooters did was take a taper reamer and make the transition from the factory angle into the drop tube less pronounced, then take some 400 grit paper and smooth it all out. Then, remember you are not loading pistol, it takes time for all the powder to drop into the case.

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Try some H335...it was developed for the 223/556 and meters excellent in the Dillon powder measures.

On the Hodgden website... "Originated as a military powder, used for the 5.56 NATO, or 223 Remington as handloaders know it."

Great powder for lighter bullets not great for heavies.

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