First off, I am not a reloader, but my friend is and he is attempting to reload some ammo for my 257 Weatherby.
I bought everything he needs and he has already loaded up some and did some test shooting. Apparently the groups are not what he'd like to see and it may be because he has started out too light?
I wanted to shoot the Barnes Tipped TSX so I called Barnes to inquire. They recommended the 100 gr Tipped TSX along with H1000 powder.
My friend said the loads are moving at around 3100 FPS, which is on the slow side right?
Any tips or suggestions that I should give him?
Oh, it is a Weatherby rifle by the way.
There are too many unknown variables, bore condition, crown condition, twist rate. As far as loads, 3100fps is starting load for 100gr with H1000, so your friend is starting on the safe side. He just needs to work the load up until the groups tighten. Just give him a chance to finish the job.
Is there a reason why you do not reload? Just thinking if you are an avid shooter, it would be the perfect opportunity to take your sport to the next level. Sounds like you have a friend that can help you.
I grew up with a father that was an AVID shotgunner. Competed year round in trap and skeet, this was before sporting clays and all the newer events. So we did a lot of reloading of shotgun shells. Our garage was full of wads from Herters and we had all we needed to mass produce shot shells for both target and field. But Dad never got into reloading brass stuff, so neither did my brother or I.
Now, since he has the equipment and he volunteered, why not? I've had the rifle for 20 plus years now, but have only shot maybe 60 rounds through it?
Factory ammo has gotten so high for a Weatherby, versus say my 243 stuff, that I haven't shot the gun in 18-20 years. I love the rifle, just refused to pay $70 a box for shooting hogs and deer here in South Texas when 243 ammo runs around $15.
I've been told that the 100 gr Tipped TSX should be moving at around 3600 fps, if not more, out of a Weatherby? Supposedly a guy my brother knows loads the 80 gr tipped TSX and he's pushing it out at over 3900 fps and loves it?
Last edited by bushwacker361; 01-01-2011 at 10:50 PM.
I am an experienced reloader (38 years) and load for longe range hunting. I have many one shot kills beyond 400 yards and killed maybe 28 antelope in the 250-563 yard range with a 30-06. l also shoot and load for the 300 Wby, and use IMR 7828. I am told 7828 and H1000 are the best velocity loads for the 257. I am looking for a 100 grain load that will exceed 3,500 from my 24 inch Vanguard. I would appreciate your input as well. For those who are totally new to Weatherby, you can buy a reforming die from Midway, Redding Brand, for about $35.00 and it will form 257 Wby cases from 7mm Mag cases with virtually no effort. They are a cheap way to have cases for plinking and varmits. I save my Weatherby factory cases for my actual hunting. I am looking at maximum loads of 7828 from the IMR manual. Does anyone have actual experience with those loads in the 24 inch Vanguard? I will be chronographing my test loads and factories in a few days and post my results if anyone wants that data. Good luck on your loads. I did talk to a friend today who is an avid reloader and 257 fanatic. He says max loads of H1000 and 110 Accubonds are giving 3/4 inch groups and about 3,400 fps. He has settled on that load. He shoots 300 RUM and 30-06 normally and says the 257 recoil is closer to a 243. FYI
That's some good info and I'm anxious to hear about your reload results. The info on the reforming die is great news, I'll pass that on to my reloading friend as he shoots a lot of 7mm ammo.
I chose the Barnes Tipped TSX after a little research and asking around. I was looking for a bullet that could drop a deer or hog instantly, or at the very least, do a complete pass through in hopes of leaving a better blood trail.
We live in a really sandy and dry area with thick grasses and brush. If you don't drop the animal where you shot it and it runs off without a really good blood trail, good luck finding it. Even one that runs no more than 50 yards or so can take quite a while to find. The sand just aborbs the blood so the more the better. These hogs too have so much fat on them, they are like self sealing fuel tanks. A 243 goes in and doesn't exit, the fat just fills in the entry wound and no blood trail.
So I wanted a maximum destruction type bullet and from all the hype, the tipped TSX was the one? I'll let you know how it turns out.
Bushwacker361; I still have not made it to the range as the wind is 25 mph today. Not the day I want for load testing. The reforming dies are actually called trim dies. They form only the case shoulder and neck. If the shell protrudes, then the cases are too long and you just file the top of the die to get the correct length. Hope I don't sound too basic for you, but I did not learn a bunch of this stuff for a decade or two after I started reloading. Weaherby brass is only sale today at Midway and it is $31.99 for 20. You can actually buy the promotional 100 grain spire point as loaded ammo for $35.99. Product number 518619. So, I am buying this loaded ammo, for sight-in, load development, and hunting. I am reforming the 7mm mag as cheap coyote and target ammo.
The refroming die I bought from Midway is product # 600071 at $36.99. They also have one by RCBS. #525745, at $37.99. Both are in stock. One of their reviews is one I put on there. Reviews for both products indicate they are used to reform 7mm mag into 257 Wby.
Let me know how your loads come along and I will do the same. I really want a 3/4 inch group at 3,500 from the 24 inch barrell and would appreciate any success info you have. thanks.
Bushwacker 361: I finally got to the range. I fired about 30 rounds of the 7mm mag reformed. They were excellant. I loaded them down to an entry level load from the Speer manual, with 100 Gr. Sierra BTSP Game Kings. If you check the manual, with IMR 4350, you will see the starting load is actually a 10% reduction in powder. Groups were about 1/2 MOA. My Vanguard is not the 1/2 MOA guarantee gun. It is the plain vanilla model, $419 at Bass Pro, Academy is $399, etc. I chronograped 10 of them and got 3,013. Not shabby for a plinking load---just loaded to fireform cases. I also chronoed the Wby 100 grain factory sp promotional load. It averaged 3,394 and shot about 1/2 MOA. The last 6 shots I fired could be covered with a dime. Tempertaure was 50, with a light wind, maybe 6-7 mph. Elevation was Norman, Oklahoma, about 1,400, I think. The reformed brass was mixed headstamp. Anyway, it worked great. It was shooting equal to the factory WBY's. This gun is also, pretty impressive. It is shooting the same tiny groups at 3,000 and also at 3,400 fps. That is a pretty broad sweet spot. This gun shoot well better than my Mark V Deluxe in 300. My next load attempt w2ill be with max loads of the H000 powder in both 100 grain Game Kings and 110 gr Accubond. Please share with me any new results you have with the TSX. Thanks.
That sounds great, I'll tell my buddy what you said. He and I have both been too busy recently to get any more loads done, not to mention the crappy weather we've been having. But as soon as we make some progress, I'll post it. Thanks again.
A short follow up. I reloaded the 7mm cases after I had resized and fired them once with great results. All went well. Then, I stuck some 257Wby brass in the die and learned the hard way, that the crimp length is different as the factory cases are slightly longer. Kind of a rookie deal that I missed that as I knew they were about 0.05 shorter than the factories. I shoved the sholder back on several factory rounds before I figured it out. Once I reset the crimp lenght all was great. When the weather breaks I will provide a follow up range report. I am trying IMR 4350, 7828, and H1000 with both the 110 Accubond and the 100 Sierra BT. I will be comparing both the 7mm reformed and the factories. My first experience showed no difference in accuracy. Later
Okay,finally got a load ready for testing. I think he can still go hotter, but we'll play it by ear?
I don't have the specifics on the powder amount, but again, we are using H1000 powder and the 100 gr Tipped TSX bullet from Barnes. The numbers I do have that he printed out are;
Barrel-velocity 3400 fps
200 yds-velocity 2835
The group is still not as tight as I'd like. 4 bullets fit within a 2 inch circle at a 100 yds, maybe a little tighter?
This evening I went to the woods for a moving target. Had a 100 lb sow come in at 200 yards, turned broadside and I aimed dead on. She dropped in her tracks, DRT. Went to inspect her and found that the bullet when in dead center on the left front shoulder, completely shattering the bone, passed completely through the right shoulder leaving a nice exit wound with substantial blood loss on that side. EXACTLY what I was looking for.
I'll ask him tomorrow what the powder charge is, but from the info I listed, does the 3400 fps sound about right for this load?
I don't see a load listed for the 100gr TTSX with H1000 powder. I see it listed for the 115gr bullet though. Their load data for the 100gr bullet with 4831 the velocity is listed as 3482fps. That is off of Barnes' website.
I called Barnes before I bought the bullets, I bought them directly from Barnes, and the man I spoke with recommended the 100 gr Tipped TSX with the H1000 powder. Apparently there's not much data on this combo yet, but my reloading friend made some phone calls and got the data from somewhere?
My buddy, off the top of his head just know, told me he used 75.5 grains of H1000 with the CCI Lg Mag Rifle Primers, case length was 3.250.
And he's going to go pull the target from yesterday as he is pretty sure all 4 rounds were within a 1" circle? But he'll measure it and let me know.
Knocked down two whitetail does with the loads. First at 78 yards, front shoulder shot as she was broadside. Dropped her dead in her tracks. Complete pass through.
Second doe at 100 yards, quartering to me a bit. Hit her dead center in the rt front shoulder, passed through the chest cavity and exited out through the ribs on the left side leaving a nickle size hole. She ran about 40 yards before piling up.
I like it.
Still have not had a chance to load and test the H1000 with any loads. I did get to a range today to shoot handguns and ran about 20 of my older 257 loads through the chrony. The bullet is the 100 grain BTSP Sierra Game King. Charge was 62.5 grain of IMR 4350. The average was 3,270, Half the cases were Weatherby once fired, the other half was mixed brass reformed from 7mm Mag. Zero difference in speed or accuracy. I am going to retain this load for the reformed brass for plinking and just shooting paper and maybe coyotes. I am still looking for a 3,500 fps load in 100 grain and 3,400 with the 115 gr Accubond. I am told that H1000 at 74 grains will get to 3,400 with the accubond. Anyone tried it?
One sjot-Ill try that load mentioned in post #4. My Weatherby 257 belches considerably more than my Sako 243.
I would like to know your results. I also shoot a 243 and probably have taken 25 whitetail, mule deer (one at 180 BC), and a bunch of antelope with that gun.
That said, most of my big game was harvested with a 30-06, which is pretty much recoil nuetral to me. My 300 WBY, is really a thumper and not fun for prolonged shooting. So far, the 257 is pretty much the same as the 30-06 and is my hobby gun which I can shoot all day.
The loads I have listed above are all pretty mild and I still hope to get 3,500 fps load out of my 24 inch barrel. Any data you supply, I would appreciate. Thanks.