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Anyone use RL 17?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 00:14
Gil P. View Drop Down
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I hear the burn rate is similar to VV N150. I am currently using N150 in my 308 with very good results. Does anyone have an opinion on how RL17 would work in a 308? Its a much more available powder than N150, that's why im interested. I have also had success with VV N140.
 
24 in barrel
1 in 11.25 twist
2.8 COAL
308 caliber
Lapua brass
Winchester primers
175 SMK


Edited by Gil P. - September/21/2013 at 09:36
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 10:09
sakomato View Drop Down
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RL17 is my favorite powder
 
I use it in:
 
6.5 rem mag, 130 gr bullet at 3175 fps
280AI, 160 gr bullet at 3050 fps
30-06, 200 gr bullet at 2725 fps
375 Ruger, 270 gr bullet at 2850 fps
 
all with no pressure signs and excellent accuracy
 
It is touted as THE powder for short magnums.  Since 308 is a shorty, I would think it would outdo any powder you have tried so far
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 10:29
Gil P. View Drop Down
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That is encouraging, I think ill try this powder and see how it goes. Its about 10 dollars cheaper than N150 anyway. Im having trouble finding load data for a 308. Im thinking I should just start at 40 and go up from there. What do you think?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 18:40
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Gil P. Gil P. wrote:

That is encouraging, I think ill try this powder and see how it goes. Its about 10 dollars cheaper than N150 anyway. Im having trouble finding load data for a 308. Im thinking I should just start at 40 and go up from there. What do you think?
sakomoto is likely right-  lots of posts out there talking about RL17 in .308 with heavy bullets.

Alliant is conservative with their RL17 data, however pressure seems to come up quick, at limit.
N150 is single based and RL17 is double based and has speed modifiers/retardant mixed throughout the grains, rather than applied as a coating. That gives it a longer pressure curve than other powders.  RL17 gives higher velocity than the slower powders it supplants, but with the higher energy/grain of a faster powder.  Alliant and Nitrochemie may develop/sell similar powders with different burn rate.

Since powders seem generally scarce, IMR 4064 is about right and several Western- marketed powders also give excellent results in .308 with those SMKs. Shortages, or not, mfg's are doing great things with the new powders- the future looks bright.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 19:05
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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@ Gil p.
VV N140 and N150 are very accurate powders. A VV distributor near OKC helps keep local prices down, but they've sold out. A friend traded me out of one of my pounds of VV the other day and now I have trader's remorse.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 20:09
sakomato View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Gil P. Gil P. wrote:

That is encouraging, I think ill try this powder and see how it goes. Its about 10 dollars cheaper than N150 anyway. Im having trouble finding load data for a 308. Im thinking I should just start at 40 and go up from there. What do you think?
 
RL17 is close to IMR4350 in burn rate.  On the Alliant site the closest bullet is 180 gr and calls for 48.7 gr
 
 
In my Nosler #5 manual the load for 180 gr and IMR4350 is 46 gr minimum 50 gr maximum
 
The 175 gr bullet being a little lighter will take just a smidge more powder.
 
If I were doing a load workup I would start at 46 gr and work up, 40 gr will in all likelihood be well below minimum.  You will probably find your best velocity with no pressure close to 50 gr but each rifle is a law unto itself
 
I can just talk about personal experience in that my load for the 06 with the 200 gr bullet is 4 gr over the Alliant site for RL17.  The 6.5 rem mag, 280AI & 375 Ruger still have no data on the website.  I am 1 gr over the maximum in the manual for IMR4350 in my 280AI.  The 6.5 rem mag and 375 Ruger are not even in my manual.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/21/2013 at 21:56
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8lbs for $200 a few places! N150
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 13:33
Gil P. View Drop Down
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Originally posted by sakomato sakomato wrote:

Originally posted by Gil P. Gil P. wrote:

That is encouraging, I think ill try this powder and see how it goes. Its about 10 dollars cheaper than N150 anyway. Im having trouble finding load data for a 308. Im thinking I should just start at 40 and go up from there. What do you think?
 
RL17 is close to IMR4350 in burn rate.  On the Alliant site the closest bullet is 180 gr and calls for 48.7 gr
 
 
In my Nosler #5 manual the load for 180 gr and IMR4350 is 46 gr minimum 50 gr maximum
 
The 175 gr bullet being a little lighter will take just a smidge more powder.
 
If I were doing a load workup I would start at 46 gr and work up, 40 gr will in all likelihood be well below minimum.  You will probably find your best velocity with no pressure close to 50 gr but each rifle is a law unto itself
 
I can just talk about personal experience in that my load for the 06 with the 200 gr bullet is 4 gr over the Alliant site for RL17.  The 6.5 rem mag, 280AI & 375 Ruger still have no data on the website.  I am 1 gr over the maximum in the manual for IMR4350 in my 280AI.  The 6.5 rem mag and 375 Ruger are not even in my manual.
 
Thanks for the info. 46 to start with sounds good to me, I forgot that this powder uses smaller grains like the VV 5 series powders. This will be my go to powder if I can get some good accuracy out of it. It is much cheaper than N150, easier to find, and my rifle likes slower burning powders so I am hopeful. For the life of me I just could not get IMR 4064 to work, and I know how good of a reputation that powder has in a 308.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 13:39
Gil P. View Drop Down
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Originally posted by 338LAPUASLAP 338LAPUASLAP wrote:

8lbs for $200 a few places! N150
 
Where did you find that? Ive looked all over; good price too.
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Gil P. View Drop Down
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Do any of you know if there is a shelf life with RL17 like there is with VV 5 series powders? I heard somewhere that double base powders like these lose their power over time once the container is opened. Is there any truth to this?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 16:25
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Gil P. Gil P. wrote:

Do any of you know if there is a shelf life with RL17 like there is with VV 5 series powders? I heard somewhere that double base powders like these lose their power over time once the container is opened. Is there any truth to this?
It's doubtful that you'd notice any loss of power,  but I don't know for sure. I've also heard that open cans of powder can "dry out" a bit and have more energy per grain.
Double based have a longer shelf life than single base powders. I've read about the shelf life thing, and have personally experienced it. I "misplaced" a box of powder many years ago and when found, the oldest sb powders were bad and the newer stuff, as well as all the db powder, was ok, including a .cache of Unique which is known to have been purchased over 30 years ago. It wasn't stored climate controlled, either and seems to be bottomless as I still shoot it today.

You pays yer money and you takes yer chances.
Here's the last can of Unique... price is $9.50 from Rhoades Gun Shop in Stillwater, OK.



Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 17:14
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Originally posted by 338LAPUASLAP 338LAPUASLAP wrote:

8lbs for $200 a few places! N150
Gene Sears has it for $179 + tax, but is out, right now.
http://store.thirdgenerationshootingsupply.com/browse.cfm/2,4434.html

I almost hate to let on that Gene Sears even sells powder, but word does get around, some how.

I was in a shop down in Vernon, TX a few weeks back and they had a big stock of powder that a buddy was looking for... it was a couple days before he got there and they were sold out by that time. Same with Gene Sears- you see it, better get it right quick.
Originally posted by sakomato sakomato wrote:

RL17 is close to IMR4350 in burn rate.  On the Alliant site the closest bullet is 180 gr and calls for 48.7 gr
 http://www.alliantpowder.com/reloaders/recipedetail.aspx?gtypeid=2&weight=180&shellid=80&bulletid=189

...I can just talk about personal experience in that my load for the 06 with the 200 gr bullet is 4 gr over the Alliant site for RL17...
managed to get a few tenths higher than what you showed us in a pic  once upon a time  - using  Nosler 200 gr. Accubond, but groups opened up, so backed it off to last good node. Had very good accuracy with Hrn 208 also, a bit under your numbers. I went through a phase, using heavy bullets  in .06 for long range shooting ( and in case of thicker zombies,) but had no real need to push my rifles that hard, so haven't loaded anything that stiff in a while. I am even out of RL17 right now.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 17:31
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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@ Gil P. 

in re: my old Unique, pictured above...
FYI, Unique is double- based, which some internet honcho has been raising your concerns about. As old as my powder is, it'll still load a .45 Colt plenty stiff enough to cause arthritis to flare up in my wrist and cause my friends to yelp when they shoot it and/or shoot clear through a horse.
What more could you ask from a powder?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 18:10
Gil P. View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Alan Robertson Alan Robertson wrote:

@ Gil P. 

in re: my old Unique, pictured above...
FYI, Unique is double- based, which some internet honcho has been raising your concerns about. As old as my powder is, it'll still load a .45 Colt plenty stiff enough to cause arthritis to flare up in my wrist and cause my friends to yelp when they shoot it and/or shoot clear through a horse.
What more could you ask from a powder?

Im glad your powder is still as good as the day you bought it. I guess not everything you read on the internet is true, go figure Big Grin. Thanks Alan.
 
I think im going to stick to buying less common powders like N150 and RL 17 for a while. I have a pound of Varget that I have yet to try out; but why bother? If it works well I wont be able to find it anywhere.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/22/2013 at 19:08
Alan Robertson View Drop Down
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Gil,
Chemical reactions being what they are, there is bound to be some difference in performance with any powder over time. Maybe someone will chime in with actual info from a powder company, rather than anecdotes from old guys like me. As long as the stuff hasn't gone bad, no problem.  I'm getting close to out of that old Unique and load it just the same as the New Unique. The old stuff smokes quite a bit, but that may be because they've changed the formula. The density is different than the new stuff also, as it throws a little different weights through a Lee ProDisk measure. Whether that's due to age or formula, I don't know, but I use the same "holes" as the new stuff- it just weighs a bit less.
I suppose I could run some tests across sandbags and the chronograph... just in case any one else out there ever discovers a cache of 30+ year old powder and wonders how it performs.
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