Last year, I tried out the reduced loads listed in the Speer manual for my Winchester 1885 in 270WSM. The loads listed for a 130 grain bullet used 25 to 27 grains of AA5744 for velocity in the neighborhood of 2,000 fps.
I split the difference on the listed loads, loading 26 grains with a LR magnum primer - and these reduced loads were phenomenally accurate. The best five-shot group I have ever shot at 100 yards was done with these, a measured .317" center to center using inexpensive Hornady 130 grain SP bullets.
No filler was used. I did not tip the barrel up to settle the powder charge close to the primer. - I just load, and shoot them normally.
They are cheap to load, with reduced recoil and they produced no particular wear on the gun. After over 400 rounds had been fired, a borescope inspection showed no detectable wear. - No heat-cracking, etc..
The accuracy was really good with these. If either my son or I shot five rounds into anything over 1/2 inch at 100 yards with them, the other would hoo-raw the shooter mercilessly, alluding to flinching, closed eyes etc..
Then, as is often the case, sad to say, I foolishly traded off my 1885 for a sexy-looking Mannlicher Schoenauer that ultimately did not work out for me.
Recently I traded into another 270WSM, this time a Winchester model 70 All weather model bolt action in stainless with a composite stock. After shooting a box of factory loads that I got with it, 150 grain Winchester silver box stuff, I trimmed the cases and tried the old reduced load out.
I am happy to report that they shot groups half the size of the full-power factory loads, in the neighborhood of 1/2 to 3/4" for five rounds. This, in a seven pound sporting rifle.
So, after seeing such good results with two very different guns, I am now going to stick my neck out and recommend this load to others.
With 30-30 like velocity and recoil, not to mention being cheap to load and very easy on the barrel, this load allows 270WSM owners to shoot a lot, and often. - You can become thoroughly familiar with your gun, develop muscle memory for its use, and get good with it. Since it apparently tends to be accurate, you'll have a lot of fun, too.
- And it would not be a bad load for varmints out to 150 yards or so, if you are not into target shooting.
It's listed in the Speer manual. Give it a try and tell us how it works out for you!
My theory is that the short, fat WSM case responds better to reduced loads than any of the standard length magnums, and that AA5744 is an ideal powder for this. - The results speak for themselves.
Kind regards, charlesb
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