Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

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Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#1

Post by Crash » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:23 pm

Now that I've got the .308 (Savage Model 10 Precision Carbine) that meets my requirements, I'd like some recommendations for ammo with bullets in the 165-168 grain range. The reason I want bullets of this weight is that the barrel has a 1 in 10 twist designed for the heavier bullets and that's how Savage tests them.

Thanks for your help

Crash


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#2

Post by strogg » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:31 pm

What will you be shooting at? Price point?

First thing that came to mind is Federal Gold Medal Match w/ 168 grain Sierra Match King bullets, but it may not be terribly good for hunting.

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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#3

Post by flowrie » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:38 pm

I also suggest the Premium Federal 168gr, Match, with Sierra HPBT.
I just purchased from SG Ammo, $17.00 per box, vs. about $28.00 per box at Cabelas.
There are also lots of other choices out there, but this is a good one to start with.
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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#4

Post by Crash » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:46 pm

flowrie wrote:I also suggest the Premium Federal 168gr, Match, with Sierra HPBT.
I just purchased from SG Ammo, $17.00 per box, vs. about $28.00 per box at Cabelas.
There are also lots of other choices out there, but this is a good one to start with.
flowrie,

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I doubt that I will do much, if any target-shooting (except for sighting-in). Mostly Hill Country Whitetails and maybe feral hogs.

Crash

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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#5

Post by The Annoyed Man » Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:37 pm

With a 1:10 twist, Savage .308s really like anything topped with a 175 grain Sierra Matchking, and it will shoot those better than the 165-168s. My son has a 10FP HS Precision, and it will eat those all day long. The best commercial loads were Federal Gold Match 175 grain SMKs, and Black Hills Match 175 grain SMKs. Doesn’t seem to matter if the bullets are moly-coated or not.

If you handload, try a 175 grain SMK over 44 grains of Varget, with whatever primer you prefer (it’s a very forgiving combination), using either new or once-fired (in that rifle) brass.

BUT..... if you insist on 165-168 grains, I’d recommend either the Federal Fusion 165 grain load, or the Federal Gold Match 168 grain SMK. The Fusion load is a hunting load for thin skinned game, that is supposed to deliver match or close to match accuracy. I have shot groups as small as .5 MOA of that load out of my Remington 700, but average group size for that load is more like 1-1.5 MOA out of that rifle. That same rifle will shoot 4 rounds of the above mentioned handload into 3/8” groups at 100 yards with fair regularity. So the Fusion ammo isn’t exactly match grade, but in that particular rifle, it comes close enough.

Hornady 168 grain match is supposed to be pretty good, although I myself have not had great results with it. It does tend to run a bit cheaper than other premium factory match loads. But for commercial loads fired in a 1:10 barrel, I’ve had the best luck with Black Hills 175 grain match.
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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#6

Post by Bitter Clinger » Sat Mar 31, 2018 8:23 am

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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#7

Post by Crash » Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:27 am

The Annoyed Man wrote:With a 1:10 twist, Savage .308s really like anything topped with a 175 grain Sierra Matchking, and it will shoot those better than the 165-168s. My son has a 10FP HS Precision, and it will eat those all day long. The best commercial loads were Federal Gold Match 175 grain SMKs, and Black Hills Match 175 grain SMKs. Doesn’t seem to matter if the bullets are moly-coated or not.

If you handload, try a 175 grain SMK over 44 grains of Varget, with whatever primer you prefer (it’s a very forgiving combination), using either new or once-fired (in that rifle) brass.

BUT..... if you insist on 165-168 grains, I’d recommend either the Federal Fusion 165 grain load, or the Federal Gold Match 168 grain SMK. The Fusion load is a hunting load for thin skinned game, that is supposed to deliver match or close to match accuracy. I have shot groups as small as .5 MOA of that load out of my Remington 700, but average group size for that load is more like 1-1.5 MOA out of that rifle. That same rifle will shoot 4 rounds of the above mentioned handload into 3/8” groups at 100 yards with fair regularity. So the Fusion ammo isn’t exactly match grade, but in that particular rifle, it comes close enough.

Hornady 168 grain match is supposed to be pretty good, although I myself have not had great results with it. It does tend to run a bit cheaper than other premium factory match loads. But for commercial loads fired in a 1:10 barrel, I’ve had the best luck with Black Hills 175 grain match.
The Annoyed Man,

I'm not a handloader, but I appreciate the info.

I know that match ammo is the most accurate factory loaded stuff you can buy, but is match ammo really appropriate for hunting our small whitetails in the Hill Country? I would really like something that expands and deposits energy, rather than something that just pokes a 30 caliber hole all the way through. Or, does the HP match ammo expand because of the hollow point? As you can tell, I have almost zero experience with match ammo.

Finally, I wonder how 150 gr ammo would do in this rifle? I know that with a 1 in 10 twist the heavier stuff is supposed to be better. In my old Howa 1500 (don't know the twist), the 150 gr Winchester Whitetail loads I bought at Walmart would put three shots in 3/4" at 100 yards--when I was having a good day...

Thanks for your recommendations,

Crash


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#8

Post by WTR » Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:26 pm

I believe any premium hunting ammo will work fine for you. Remington, Fiocchi, Hornady, or Federal will work fine for you.

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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#9

Post by puma guy » Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:33 pm

Crash wrote:
flowrie wrote:I also suggest the Premium Federal 168gr, Match, with Sierra HPBT.
I just purchased from SG Ammo, $17.00 per box, vs. about $28.00 per box at Cabelas.
There are also lots of other choices out there, but this is a good one to start with.
flowrie,

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I doubt that I will do much, if any target-shooting (except for sighting-in). Mostly Hill Country Whitetails and maybe feral hogs.

Crash
I shoot Federal Premium Vital- Shok 165gr Vital•Shok® Sierra® GameKing® Boat-Tail SP in two different rifles; Federal P308C. A Model 88 Winchester and a Model 742 Remington. I use the same ammo in my .270 - ie 150 gr Vital•Shok® Sierra® GameKing® Boat-Tail SP. I always buy several boxes of the same lot number. I have tried several other brands of ammo for my .308's and my .270 and the most consistent I have found is the Federal Premium. I always check the zero on my rifles prior to hunting season and even if I have had to buy a new lot number they are still zeroed or extremely close, by that I mean no real adjustment necessary for hunting purposes. The Sierra Game King SP BT is a very good bullet.

https://www.federalpremium.com/ammuniti ... l-sp/p308c
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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#10

Post by Crash » Sat Mar 31, 2018 5:30 pm

puma guy wrote:
Crash wrote:
flowrie wrote:I also suggest the Premium Federal 168gr, Match, with Sierra HPBT.
I just purchased from SG Ammo, $17.00 per box, vs. about $28.00 per box at Cabelas.
There are also lots of other choices out there, but this is a good one to start with.
flowrie,

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I doubt that I will do much, if any target-shooting (except for sighting-in). Mostly Hill Country Whitetails and maybe feral hogs.

Crash
I shoot Federal Premium Vital- Shok 165gr Vital•Shok® Sierra® GameKing® Boat-Tail SP in two different rifles; Federal P308C. A Model 88 Winchester and a Model 742 Remington. I use the same ammo in my .270 - ie 150 gr Vital•Shok® Sierra® GameKing® Boat-Tail SP. I always buy several boxes of the same lot number. I have tried several other brands of ammo for my .308's and my .270 and the most consistent I have found is the Federal Premium. I always check the zero on my rifles prior to hunting season and even if I have had to buy a new lot number they are still zeroed or extremely close, by that I mean no real adjustment necessary for hunting purposes. The Sierra Game King SP BT is a very good bullet.

https://www.federalpremium.com/ammuniti ... l-sp/p308c
puma guy,

Thanks for the recommendation--I'll give it a try.

Crash


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#11

Post by glazer1972 » Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:38 pm

AMAX.


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#12

Post by Weg » Sun Apr 01, 2018 6:11 am

Hornady 150 grain SST has shot MOA or better in everything I have tried it in ( Ruger American, and 2 different AR10's). That is what I use on hogs and Axis when shooting .308, Puts them down just fine. I just started handloading using Nosler Ballistic tips, which shoot the same accuracy wise, just have not shot anything with them yet. Back in the 90's ballistic tips earned a bad reputation for over expanding on impact and not making it to vitals, especially on large hogs. Not sure if that is still an issue with them or not, but I know they work fine on deer.


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#13

Post by Crash » Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:00 am

Weg wrote:Hornady 150 grain SST has shot MOA or better in everything I have tried it in ( Ruger American, and 2 different AR10's). That is what I use on hogs and Axis when shooting .308, Puts them down just fine. I just started handloading using Nosler Ballistic tips, which shoot the same accuracy wise, just have not shot anything with them yet. Back in the 90's ballistic tips earned a bad reputation for over expanding on impact and not making it to vitals, especially on large hogs. Not sure if that is still an issue with them or not, but I know they work fine on deer.
Weg,

How do you think the Hornady 150 grain SST will shoot in my rifle with its 1 in 10 twist? Savage tests it with 168 grain bullets.

Thanks for the info,

Crash


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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#14

Post by WTR » Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:15 am

You know ever rifle is different. You need to experiment with some premium bullets with different weights and find your rifles sweet spot..That is part of fhe fun.

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Re: Recommendations for .308 Winchester Ammo in 165-168 grain range

#15

Post by AndyC » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:17 am

Crash wrote:How do you think the Hornady 150 grain SST will shoot in my rifle with its 1 in 10 twist? Savage tests it with 168 grain bullets.
My Savage 10 (1:10 twist) hated it - shotgun-patterns at 100 yards, I guess due to the short bearing-length. Went to 168 and 175 SMKs and it shot very well, so I'd suggest finding the 165 SST and trying that.
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