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#1761090 - 12/22/10 12:03 PM Benchmark Powder
Ravage Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/13/10
Posts: 49
Loc: Central Arkansas
I am looking for some views or input on hogdon benchmark powder. I have been loading 55gr vmax's with 25grains of powder into a .223 with it. My first loads into the brass I am using were what I consider very good. 1" groups at 200yrds. Now my second loads into this brass are grouping 5" at 200yrds. Planning to hit the drawing board again and am considering looking at different powders along with different bullets. What are the thoughts on this powder? I am pretty new to reloading and haven't tried any other powders yet.
_________________________
You may take my money, you may even take other things in which I care deeply about, but over my DEAD BODY are you gonna take my guns!!!

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#1761094 - 12/22/10 12:06 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Ravage]
kilk14 Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 07/21/05
Posts: 326
Loc: SD
Try 24.5gr of Benchmark and Winchester Primers pushing that bullet. I had good luck with that when I had my hbar elite.

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#1761141 - 12/22/10 12:43 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: kilk14]
Hidalgo Online
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 09/10/06
Posts: 4178
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
I've loaded Benchmark extensively in both the .204 and the .223, but have always found that it performed best for me when the loads weren't "pushing the envelope" on velocity. Moderate speeds seemed to always group better. Benchmark and 60gr VMax was as good in the accuracy department as anything else that I loaded for the caliber you're using.

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#1761461 - 12/22/10 04:48 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Hidalgo]
TwoSeventy Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/21/07
Posts: 189
Loc: OK
Originally Posted By: Hidalgo
I've loaded Benchmark extensively in both the .204 and the .223, but have always found that it performed best for me when the loads weren't "pushing the envelope" on velocity. Moderate speeds seemed to always group better. Benchmark and 60gr VMax was as good in the accuracy department as anything else that I loaded for the caliber you're using.


I will agree with Hidalgo on not loading Benchmark too hot. I use Benchmark quite a bit loading for the 223 Rem. I have found that using approximately the middle of the load range for a given weight bullet has given the best results with this powder.

24.2 grains has been the best load with several 52 gr. bullets, and 23.6 has been the best load with 60 gr. bullets. Going more towards the max load makes the groups open up quite a bit.

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#1761689 - 12/22/10 07:32 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: TwoSeventy]
Hooked Offline
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 01/01/08
Posts: 3766
Loc: Nebraska,USA
1" groups at 200 yards I would consider good as well. I wouldn`t give up on the powder yet. Look at consistancy in your reloading practices, would be the best advice I could give.
A couple questions I wonder. Same batch of powder? First new brass, then once reloaded?
I am pretty new to reloading also...I am figuring out that sometimes it`s just like you said.."back to the drawing Board".
Welcome to PM`s
_________________________
LR 308, because when SHTF, all those %&*$@3 buying up and hoarding all the 22LR won`t stand a chance...lol

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#1761888 - 12/22/10 09:23 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Ravage]
700xcr Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 01/02/09
Posts: 263
Loc: Washington USA
My 223rem. likes 25.5grs of benchmark with Nosler 50gr. bts. Using CCI 400 small rifle primers. Very accurate in my Remington 700 SPS Varmint 26" barrel.

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#1761990 - 12/22/10 10:14 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: 700xcr]
TCS Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 351
Loc: NY
If you got 1" groups at 200 yards I wouldn't be looking at different powders. I'd see what changed about the brass.

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#1762038 - 12/22/10 10:41 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: TCS]
Ravage Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/13/10
Posts: 49
Loc: Central Arkansas
Thanks for all the input. It's really nice having a group of "peers" to turn to for advise on this stuff. I believe I will stick to benchmark. Yes Hooked, it is out of the same batch of powder and the second reload on new brass.

After reading the replies I think maybe I need to double check ALL my measurements and drop my charge back to maybe say,,,,,, 24 grains and work up in .5 grain increments.
_________________________
You may take my money, you may even take other things in which I care deeply about, but over my DEAD BODY are you gonna take my guns!!!

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#1762042 - 12/22/10 10:43 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: TCS]
DoubleUp Online
Die Hard Member

Registered: 12/18/10
Posts: 704
Loc: USA
I've shot a lot of Benchmark in 204 and 223 over the past 6 months. Like most powders there is usually a lower accuracy node and then the groups will disperse as you go up in powder charge and tighten again on another node in the upper range.

Really good accuracy in 204 with adequate velocity.

Excellent velocity and accuracy in 223 over a wide range of bullet weights. Amazingly, although a faster burning powder than Varget, Benchmark will shoot within 25 fps of Varget with the 75 Hornady bthp in my bolt and AR.

I really like it.
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#1762077 - 12/22/10 10:58 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: DoubleUp]
Hidalgo Online
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 09/10/06
Posts: 4178
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
One thing that hasn't been mentioned......

Benchmark is NOT as temperature sensitive as H335 and some others.

Don't ask me how I know about H335 and high temperatures ..... rolleyes

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#1762124 - 12/22/10 11:28 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Ravage]
Flyrod1 Offline
Die Hard Member II

Registered: 03/03/06
Posts: 1338
Loc: Spotsy, VA
Originally Posted By: Ravage
I am looking for some views or input on hogdon benchmark powder. I have been loading 55gr vmax's with 25grains of powder into a .223 with it. My first loads into the brass I am using were what I consider very good. 1" groups at 200yrds. Now my second loads into this brass are grouping 5" at 200yrds. Planning to hit the drawing board again and am considering looking at different powders along with different bullets. What are the thoughts on this powder? I am pretty new to reloading and haven't tried any other powders yet.

===================================================================
What did you do to prepare your brass for the second loading? Are you FL sizing, did you trim your cases, etc? Do you have the tools to check the runout of your cases and loaded ammo? There's a difference somewhere....ammo or rifle....maybe even the trigger nut! laugh
It's hard to diagnose a problem without knowing all the variables.
F1

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#1762182 - 12/23/10 12:01 AM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Flyrod1]
Dogslayer24 Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 02/08/07
Posts: 447
Loc: Out west
I have always used Benchmark in my .204, and now am using it with my 22-250. It shoots awesome in both calibers and has really become the old stand by for me with my smaller calibers. I also have been happy with Varget, but Benchmark is my favorite.

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#1762209 - 12/23/10 12:25 AM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: TCS]
RePete Offline
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 07/11/07
Posts: 4669
Loc: Idaho (Clearwater County)
Originally Posted By: TCS
If you got 1" groups at 200 yards I wouldn't be looking at different powders. I'd see what changed about the brass.


Exactly,,,,,,,,,, powders don't magically change.
Gotta be something you've done different.
I'd be more inclined to think that the problem lies in the rifle.
Might check the rings and/or bases, or the scope it's self.
Luck
_________________________
Get my lantern Get my gun

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#1762326 - 12/23/10 06:39 AM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: RePete]
Ravage Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/13/10
Posts: 49
Loc: Central Arkansas
I should apologize for not being more clear in my original question. I am not blaming the powder. I was wanting some views on what others felt about benchmark. Reason being? I was thinking about trying other bullets and bullet weights out to try to improve my grouping and thought while I was there, I may try out some other powders as well, not that there is anything wrong with what I have. Just see how another powder would perform. A curiosity thing. However, after reading the replies, I believe it is apparent that I am jumping the gun a bit. I plan to take others advise and stay with what I have, for now anyway, and make some adjustments. adjustments like powder charge and case length. The grouping problem, I am now positive, is most likely due to my careless rookie mistakes.

I am learning more and more about all the different variables that play into rifle accuracy. As I stated previously, I am still really new to reloading, and coyote hunting for that matter. Most of what I know, I have learned from this site and others alike. Thanks for the feedback.
_________________________
You may take my money, you may even take other things in which I care deeply about, but over my DEAD BODY are you gonna take my guns!!!

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#1762794 - 12/23/10 03:16 PM Re: Benchmark Powder [Re: Ravage]
Hooked Offline
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 01/01/08
Posts: 3766
Loc: Nebraska,USA
For the most part I just started trying some Benchmark, and found it worked very well with 60g Sierra (.223Rem)
I had tried it once before just a little with some 60g VMax, but not enough to find good results.
_________________________
LR 308, because when SHTF, all those %&*$@3 buying up and hoarding all the 22LR won`t stand a chance...lol

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