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  #1  
Old 03-12-2009, 02:47 PM
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W748 vs. others in .223-- cleanliness?


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Does anyone else here think 748 is a relatively dirty powder in .223 Rem? I swear it takes me longer to clean my rifle after shooting a batch of 748 than it did with IMR4198. I don't think I recall VV N133 in a comparative way. I like 748's easy metering, perfect load density, and good velocity, but I swear it's harder to clean up after. Am I nuts, or do any of you feel the same way?
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Old 03-12-2009, 02:51 PM
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I wouldn't classify it as a clean powder but it is easy to use. Kinda static sensitive as I remember. I quit using 748 in favor of Varget in my 223.
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:01 PM
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Is not the "best powder" I've used in a 223. I recall decient results. Copper fouling was allways my main concern in those rifles though. "Powder fouling" has allways been purdy simple to remove IME.

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Old 03-12-2009, 10:32 PM
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I'm using it in my 222Rem with no problems, no dirtier than other powders in my opinion.
Have found if the load is a little under max pressure it gets dirtier, but that's a rare occurrence.
I've never had a problem removing powder fouling from any of my rifles, I use Hoppe's No.9 for powder fouling removal, normally only takes 4-5 patches for it all to be gone.
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Old 03-13-2009, 01:03 AM
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I use it for my Mini-14. Don't find it really dirty but then I don't mind cleaning the weapon afterwards. It's all part of the fun when shooting.
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  #6  
Old 03-13-2009, 06:33 AM
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Many spherical powders burn a bit dirty. That's because they have more deterrent coating than stick powders, and thus are more resistant to full ignition/burn - especially if the load does not achieve optimum pressure for that powder.

I've found (with a borescope) that H335 is much worse than W748 in that regard. H335 leaves behind a hard black, almost ceramic coating that is shiny enough to be undetectable if you just look through the bore from the end. You can get a bore "clean" and never touch that hard coating from H335.

The best and cleanest spherical that I've seen yet is (Western Powder) Ramshot TAC.
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Old 03-13-2009, 09:07 AM
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I was just going to recommend Ramshot's TAC, its good stuff!
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Old 03-13-2009, 09:22 AM
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Thanks for all the input, fellas. It's not that I find the rifle difficult or impossible to clean, but I am likely to keep working it until the patches come out spotless. After that, I often put the Foul Out to it for copper.

Rocky, the hard carbon fouling you describe w/H335 is something I'd like to avoid. I've heard it said that 748 does NOT do that, and I've also seen it in the marketing stuff that 748 'burns cooler,' contributing to longer barrel life. Do you know whether that is a sort of general condition of ball powders, or just 748 (or just marketing?)?

I've seen and been tempted by TAC on the shelves here, and all the Western Powder options are less money than Hodgdon's various brands. Maybe 'cause they're more local? Perhaps I'll try some (after I've used more/most of my N133, A2230, IMR4198, and 748 ).
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Old 03-14-2009, 06:52 AM
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MZ5,
I don't use Win 748, but I do use Win 760 in my 17 Rem, and they're likely very similar. I'd call it 'dirty', but that's comparing it to extruded powders. I have to clean the barrel every 20-30 shots or accuracy really falls off. I accept this since trying to get extruded powders in that small case mouth is just plain frustrating, plus, I get good accuracy with the load. I find the same when using H380 - another spherical - in the 243 Win, but I get many more shots out of that before cleaning. As you indicate, not hard to clean up, but very dirty, IMO.
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Old 03-14-2009, 07:03 AM
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I don't know how they avoid it, but Ramshot powders are MUCH cleaner than any other spherical powder. So are the Accurate sphericals that I've used - and AA2230 is designed for the .223. Winchester ball powders do tend to leave some ash behind, unless loaded to near maximum pressure, where they start burning much cleaner. The borescope told me that W748 ash is loose, not like that H335 armor-plating I saw.

But if your shooting is like mine when I'm prairie dog shooting, TAC is THE powder for you. I can shoot TAC all day (and that means 500 rounds per gun) and clean up in the evening with a couple of wet patches and one dry. Honest.
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Old 03-14-2009, 09:40 AM
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another vote for Varget....not the cleanest, but surely easily removed from an ar15.
Super accuracy too.
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Old 03-14-2009, 10:36 AM
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In my experience, Varget is great with bullets of 55 grains and up, but is too slow for bullets lighter than that. I've also been told that slower powders are hard on direct gas impingement systems like the AR, but I have no personal experience with that.
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Old 03-14-2009, 01:23 PM
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I use Varget in my loadings for 52 grain to 69 grain;
Right in rocky's area.

I've never shot anything smaller than the 52 grainers in the .223, so never looked at any other powder once I had great results with Varget.

748 in my experience was/is dirty.
4595, either fron Hodgdon or IMR worked well for me also, but not as good as varget.
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Old 03-14-2009, 01:34 PM
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My brother's a big Varget fan as well. Perhaps that's why I don't use it?

My current .223 is a light CZ bolt gun, so ~60 grains is the upper limit. 50 - 55 grains is what I'll most likely be sticking with. I got a mess of 55-grain ballistic tips that I'm working on now.
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Old 03-14-2009, 01:51 PM
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I hope the 55 grain bullets work for you. I couldn't get them to shoot worth a darn in my Kimber. I went down to a 40 grain Ballistic Tip and the rifle was a one-holer, same with the 63 grain Sierra Semi Point, a one-holer. I really like the Sierra/Vaget combination. I wish those 63 grain bullets would come in value packs.
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Old 03-14-2009, 03:01 PM
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Anybody know how 'new' Ramshot is? I don't see it listed in my current manuals, which are at least 5 years old. I'm interested in it for the 17 Rem (not sure it's even suitable for it)....sorry MZ5, not trying to hijack the thread, just curious.
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Old 03-14-2009, 03:43 PM
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No problem, Shawn. I can tell you that there's limited Ramshot data in Hornady's #7 and Speer's #14, but it's pretty limited.

For example, Hornady's #7 has data for TAC in the .223, but not in most other 22-cals, nothing in .243, and nothing in .30-06. I don't see any Ramshot data in either the .17 Mach IV nor the .17 Remington in that manual.

Speer #14 has data for Ramshot Magnum and Big Game in .243 (.243 data is all new in #14), but no .223 nor .30-06 data for Ramshot powders. Speer apparently makes no .17-cal bullets because they have no .17s in their manual at all.

Lyman's 48th (1 edition old) has no Ramshot data, but I thought that a review @ MidwayUSA indicated that the 49th does have Ramshot data. Don't know how much. I was kind of hoping that Nosler's 6th would have Ramshot data since I'd like to pick up one of their manuals.

Ramshot's guide (free download from their website) lists loads for TAC and X-Terminator in .17 Remington, FWIW. They say they use "test barrels" which I presume to mean the pressure barrels that folks like Lyman use (vs. the actual off-the-production-line firearms that Speer and Hornady use for most/all of their testing).

NOTE: When I refer to Ramshot powders above, I'm talking about Ramshot-labeled powders. All these manuals have good data for Accurate Arms-labeled powders, which are now owned/sold by Western Powder Co. (parent of Ramshot, too).
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Last edited by MZ5; 03-14-2009 at 03:47 PM.
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  #18  
Old 03-14-2009, 04:11 PM
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Nosler's #6 does have some Ramshot data, but the best source is Ramshot, they have a free manual, online data, and if you submit a question they will give you all the advice you want.
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