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20 PRACTICAL 2014 ROCK AND ROLL

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My marathon shooting day last Sunday was certianly one that was much needed My smiley face neded some tune up so I saved my hole card for the last bench session. This one is a Black Hole 20 Practical that Ritch at RPG build for me last year. Last PD sesioon I was jammed for time and just threw together a quick load to get'ter done. The dogs died on 46 out of 50 shots that day so I had a suspicion I had a few groups left in the tube with some decent development . This one has a 24" bull 3P polygon barrel with a TC. Finish is a nice uber-shiny machine type.


Not a lot of 20 PRACTICAL data has been published as the 20 TACTICAL has been around longer. Just happening to have a 20 TACTICAL also I knew that half my load developement was done for me. The capacites are close and the PRACTICAL is a tad larger so I had some pressure cushion built into the equation already.


I normally shoot 32 or 39 garin Sierra BT's but Ritch convinced me to try the Berger 35's out. There were quite a few available so I grabbed 500 a few months ago in preperation. As I had been shooting the other two in my TACTICAL and the bullet weight was almost in the midle I split the charge levels in half and backed off a tad for a starting load. I loaded up some RL 10 but found out PDQ that it was a bit hot at the levels I wanted to try. Maybe that 95 degree heat had some bearing? LOL After soem tries at it I set that aside and grabbed a box loaded with X-Terminator. A powder that is available often and since I had fifteen pounds of it and it's twin I figured it would be fine. I shopot a lot of it in my 204 Ruigers so knew that velocites should be adequate.


Sometimes you set down at the bench and after about three shots that groovy feeling kicks in. It seems like the zone just stetches out and you just can't miss. I know how surfers feel now when they are in the tube. I know we don't really see the actual bullet going down range but sometinmes that hint of a shadow blinks for us. When I sat down and took the first two shots that went in the same hole I figured a smart man should just call it good and go home. That would be no fun and I had ammo to burn. I neded empty cases for next week!! LOL


I had decided to do an abbreviated testing sesion thanks to the 100+ heat here already so only tried two loads of the X-TERMINATOR. Results wwre adequate IMHO so here we go.


First two targets clocked in at a decent 3798. The groups were all at 100 so I have a leg up for doing my ballistic table for iome ups already.


35BEREGR247X-TERM6-8-14001_zps5bc3fe6e.j


Not a bad result for a SWAG from a similar cartridge.


I had bumped the charge a tad on the next one and once I settled back in and the mirage/wind went away I had five cartridges left. I had a range finder and was eyeing a rock out around 375 that was the size of a tennis ball. I figured a three shot group was going to be the test and then if it looked good I was going to get my first rock chunk of the year.


Things settled down and I let the VORTEX do what it does best for steering. Three shots and three minutes later I had my load for the first trip. Velocity was adequate at 3895 and pressures signs looked good on the cases. I' going to let this one be my MAX for now as it will only get hotter before it gets cooler.


35BERGER252X-TERM6-8-14001_zps3bdb08ef.j


They were close enough that I wasn't too worried about my tennis rock so I loaded the last two and the mag and went into my for the money mode. I had a drop table in my bag for the 32 Sierras so figured I was close. One shot gave me half a tennis ball to shoot at. I love the sensation of the recoil followed by the whack of the bullet coming back almost simultaneously. Well one left in the chamber and half a rock chunk left. Slow squeeze and no rock was to be seen. I do believe we have a winner. The BTE gas block let me lay the cases right where I wanted them and the rifle ran without a hiccup.


I'll post up some PD pictures next week over in the hunting area if the little critters cooperate.


The PRACTICAL is by far my favorite hot rocks way into wildcatting. Cheap brass. Case forming is straight forward and with all the TACTICAL data out there you are almost done for load workups before the first powder drop.


What do you think on this one guys?


Greg

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I think your teasing me!!

 

I like it a lot Greg. What length barrel?

 

Looks like your getting close to the magic 4000. Do you think it can be done with some different powders?

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24" and yes the 4000 is easily doable with a 32. A 35 won't be a problem once I get some time. 39 grainers won't happen I hace some secret squirrel barrel in the corner that will do it but they aren't on the big to do list yet. The 22X6.8 will push a 40 way past 4000 and I will do that in the next few months.

 

Greg

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I think that is sweet.....I don't even have my 223 yet and already want to go to 20 prac!

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took the 20 Practical along this morning for a final verification on my sights getting ready for next week, I loaded up the slower of the bullet batch that was only running 3798 but better hits than fast misses. I was parsimonious this morning and only fired two three shot groups. After these two I figured thee was no sense wasting any more ammo. Certainly adequate for the job at hand.

 

20PRAC35BERGERX-TERM6-14-14001_zpsdacc05

 

The group on the left was the initial try and the one on the right was after the sight adjustment so I can hold middle of PD out to around 375 or so. Anything to take the guess work at unknown distance...LOL

 

Greg

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I finally was able to shoot over a chrono for a short time today. I too found that my lightest of load rl10x was on the hot side. it was 25g over a 32g sbk. I had flattened and slightly cratered primers. One was stuck in the chamber and had to be mortared out. Thankfully nothing catastrophic. I'm still learning this art of wildcats. As soon as I saw the chrono read 4023 I knew that I was on the hot side. All in all a successful night of 8 different loads.

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I'll dig out my primer smoking load...LOL

 

Greg

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My buddy just texted me the chrono info and I was wrong about the load. it was 26.5g of H335 of the 32sbk. the three shots clocked in at 4020, 3980, and 3984 about 1 inch group at 100yds. I didn't get around to taking pictures. It was a beautiful day in kansas today, ~65 degrees and 5mph wind. the little range we go to was pretty busy so we didn't get to many rounds between my brother, myself, and a friend. my 20p, my friends 270AR, and my brothers 6.8

Edited by travmack

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