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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got my 20 practical barrel in after waiting 8 months. Does anyone have any experience loading for it? I've found minimal load data online. General consensus seems to be to load 2 gr short of .204 ruger loads or use 20 tactical data. It will mainly be my coyote hunting setup.

I have 32 gr Sierra blitzking, 40 gr berger bt varmint, and 40gr nosler ballistic tip varmint.

Powders that i have available
imr 4166 enduron
varget
h4895
h335
h380
imr 4831

I formed 100 brass and loaded 50 with 40 gr berger over 24.5 gr varget at OAL 2.2450. But, i haven't had a chance to shoot yet.

Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!
 

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Máistir an pointe hocht.
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Should be a fun round, is that for your AR? 223 necked down to 20 just makes sense.

Let us know what you figure out. H4895 should be a good one for that.
 

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Use .20 Tactical data, but as always, start low and work your way up.

I have been happy enough with the .204s that I haven't ventured into the wildcat realm, but both those cartridges are based on the .223, with minor variations in shoulder angles and neck length, so the data should be awfully close.
In my .204s, I've had best results with H-322, Benchmark and IMR 4895, so that's where I'd start. I've also used 2230-C, which is similar, if not identical, to AA 2460, so there's enough variety there to get you going.
You might nose around www.204ruger.com and go thru their handloading forum, someone there might be able to get you closer than my very generalized "help".
Of the powders you mentioned, I'd stick with H4895 and Varget, the others are too slow for the tiny case. H335 is okay, BUT it really dirties up a barrel and that ash is hard to get out of a barrel. I quit using it years ago, as it really isn't too good in hot weather, either. It'll work in cool weather, but in hot weather, it can cause pressure rises that are no fun in a prairie dog town. I'd look at some of the newer powders that limit copper buildup, too (CFE versions). No one likes to clean the danged copper out of a barrel.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Should be a fun round, is that for your AR? 223 necked down to 20 just makes sense.

Let us know what you figure out. H4895 should be a good one for that.
Yeah, this is an AR barrel. I was looking at building a .204 AR. But, when i stumbled upon some information on the 20P, it seemed like the route to take. Availability of .223 brass and being able to use all standard AR parts all the way down to mags sold me on it. My plan is to eventually build a bolt gun to match if this works out well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Use .20 Tactical data, but as always, start low and work your way up.

I have been happy enough with the .204s that I haven't ventured into the wildcat realm, but both those cartridges are based on the .223, with minor variations in shoulder angles and neck length, so the data should be awfully close.
In my .204s, I've had best results with H-322, Benchmark and IMR 4895, so that's where I'd start. I've also used 2230-C, which is similar, if not identical, to AA 2460, so there's enough variety there to get you going.
You might nose around www.204ruger.com and go thru their handloading forum, someone there might be able to get you closer than my very generalized "help".
Of the powders you mentioned, I'd stick with H4895 and Varget, the others are too slow for the tiny case. H335 is okay, BUT it really dirties up a barrel and that ash is hard to get out of a barrel. I quit using it years ago, as it really isn't too good in hot weather, either. It'll work in cool weather, but in hot weather, it can cause pressure rises that are no fun in a prairie dog town. I'd look at some of the newer powders that limit copper buildup, too (CFE versions). No one likes to clean the danged copper out of a barrel.
Thanks for the help. I think I'll stick with the varget for now as i have a few pounds of it. I'll work up the best load I can with it and keep my eye out for some other powders.

What's your thoughts on OAL? I started at .010 off the lands, but wondering if i shouldn't give it a little more breathing room on the jump.
 

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Thanks for the help. I think I'll stick with the varget for now as i have a few pounds of it. I'll work up the best load I can with it and keep my eye out for some other powders.

What's your thoughts on OAL? I started at .010 off the lands, but wondering if i shouldn't give it a little more breathing room on the jump.
Do a seating depth test. Are you shooting a ladder or chronograph to find powder charge? After you find that node run seating depth at .010, .013, .016, etc. until you find what it likes. And I would definitely get a comparator to measure seating depth if you don't already have one.
 

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Being new to reloading, I just dont trust other ways of figuring out seating depth without an OAL comparator. Its piece of mind for me.
 

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Máistir an pointe hocht.
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Being new to reloading, I just dont trust other ways of figuring out seating depth without an OAL comparator. Its piece of mind for me.
Not to mention, if you are into accuracy, sort of a must have item..... Easy to use, and you get more consistant seating assuming you are using the correct bullet seater. :cool:
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I was planning on using the ladder method to get in the neighborhood and then shooting groups to pinpoint it from there . I'm new to reloading and load development, so i could be all wet in this. But, from what I've read or watched on YouTube, I've gathered that the ladder method can give you some false results to use it solely. I've kicked around buying a chronograph. But, at this point, I don't know what I'm looking at enough to be sure I'm buying what i need. It sounds like i definitely need to order a compensator for my calipers though.

It will be a rarity that I'll be shooting over 300 yds. Starting down this rabbit hole of load development and a wildcat at that is just kind of a pet project to learn how and take the next step. Up until now, my loading has just been middle of the road out of the book.
 

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"It will be a rarity that I'll be shooting over 300 yds. Starting down this rabbit hole of load development and a wildcat at that is just kind of a pet project to learn how and take the next step. Up until now, my loading has just been middle of the road out of the book. " pcrusher


There's nothing, absolutely nothing, wrong with that approach. It keeps you out of trouble, and no one wants trouble when you're fooling with firearms. It's a good way to go.
 
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