Perfect Union banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a Wilson 16" barrel upper chambered in AAC 300 Blackout. I plan to initially mount it on my Colt 6940 lower to see if I really like the cartridge. Since I'm currently here gunless in Korea, I won't be able to try it out until I get back to the States when I retire at the end of February. Any ideas from you guys on ammunition, handloading ACC 300 BO, and or sighting systems appropriate to a tactically-oriented carbine? Also any thoughts on a good lower to dedicate to the Wilson upper?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
Greetings, hope your back soon. I just bought an upper. I haven't loaded any yet, but sure do plan on it. My friend works for Bushmaster and he was talking about shooting one this week. My upper hasn't arrive yet, but I ordered it with all the needed parts, (dies, case gauge and powder). I plan on loaded a few with H110 and AA1680. I have over a thousand 5.56 lake city brass to convert, I am sure I can work out some sort of process. I will keep you informed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What sort of a lower are you planning on for your Blackout upper? I've spent the last 17 years working for the U.S. Army in Korea and have only been able to shoot and/or buy guns while on CONUS leave every year or two. During those leaves was the only opportunities I had to do any shooting. Since we have recently bought a house in the Seattle area, I took advantage of my leaves last year and this Spring to buy and few guns and managed to get my household goods in storage delivered to the house (my adult daughter and here family is living in the house now). Really looking forward to getting back to my (otherwise) lifelong hobby of shooting and reloading.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Start here:
300 AAC BLACKOUT (300BLK)

and here:
300BlkTalk • Index page

Currently, the Rem 115gr ammo is the cost-leader at about $12/box. Plus the brass is good stuff. PNW Arms also makes good inexpensive ammo in light, medium and heavy weights.
The Barnes "black tip" 110gr TAC-TX bullets are held to be the ideal bullet in supersonic loads. Figure on $35-40/box.

All the major reloading companies make dies. If you have a whole lot of .223 brass already, case forming is very simple, but you'll want to anneal for best case life.
Load data for both sub and supersonic ammo is also readily available at either of the above websites. Most folks like H110 for supersonic and A1680 for the subsonics.

If I'm remembering it correctly, a carbine-length gas system runs supersonics and selected subsonics well and random subsonics OK; a pistol length system runs subsonics well and supersonics sorta OK. An adjustable gas block allows you to run both well.

I'm not a big fan of battery-operated sights, and the 300 is capable out past where my aging eyes can effectively use irons, so my 300 has a Weaver 1-3x. If you're flush, Leupold makes a dedicated 300 scope. Just about any lower would work well with that upper; mine happens to be a DPMS I had lying around. I'd probably opt for a semi-match trigger when buying the LPK.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
PigBat, thanks for the links. My Korean internet provider has some goofy block on searches and I had not come accross those sites. Re whoa's concerns about $12 bucks a box I ask, "Where can you get decent .308 for $12 these days?" I know I'm out of touch, but I didn't see anything in the stores at that price when I was home in May. For obvious reasons, I haven't make use of mail order to ammo yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
The days of good surplus .308 going for $140/thousand are long gone, but there are still some deals to be had on internet sales.
AIM surplus (my go-to internet ammo pusher) recently had Prvi Partisan .308 ball for $11/box, and .223 ball for $6.20/box. Both are now out of stock, but you can get pretty close to the $12-15/box mark for .308 if you shop around.

Naturally, if you reload, it becomes a whole 'nother ball game. The 300 is easy on cases, uses only a little powder, and is quite happy with milsurp pulled bullets; you can reload it for about the same price as pistol ammo. The 300 BLK for me is not like .22LR, 5.56, the 7.62 family, etc.: I'm not going to stock multiple thousand rounds of it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Good news, PigBat. I plan to make plenty of time for reloading and shooting in my retirement after all those years overseas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
What sort of a lower are you planning on for your Blackout upper? I've spent the last 17 years working for the U.S. Army in Korea and have only been able to shoot and/or buy guns while on CONUS leave every year or two. During those leaves was the only opportunities I had to do any shooting. Since we have recently bought a house in the Seattle area, I took advantage of my leaves last year and this Spring to buy and few guns and managed to get my household goods in storage delivered to the house (my adult daughter and here family is living in the house now). Really looking forward to getting back to my (otherwise) lifelong hobby of shooting and reloading.
I have a Spikes Tactical Lower that I plan on doing double duty with. I have a standard A2 upper and the 300 blackout. I have another RRA Arms lower with a match trigger so I can take my choice. Three uppers and two lowers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
147 Posts
I reload 223 and use the .22lr conversion unit extensively

The .22 handles the sub 100 yd snapshooting, there is very little need to practice the slowfire stuff, from a braced position, mastered that 4 decades ago. So the 223 is spent on 100-300 yd going prone and hooking up the bipod stuff. Not that much of it, 2000 rd a year, maybe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
Got the dies all adjusted in tonight. Too the de-capper out and sized 100 rounds of LC 5.56 brass. I then used my RCBS trimmer with the .22 pilot and my drill to trim them down to the shoulder. Hot knife through butter. I then used my Hornady power swager tool to clean them up. I then resized them again and trimmed them to 1.368 using the .308 pilot. Back to the swager and then into the tumbler (tomorrows work). This is my first time so I only did 10 to completion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Very nice!
Are you going to anneal the cases? Some folks say it isn't necessary, others (like me) do it routinely: if I'm going to take the time and trouble to make the case, I want it to last as long as possible.
But, I've never done a side-by-side comparison to see how much better case life annealing gives you, so it may be one of those "time cost-benefit" things.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
I played a bunch with some Lake City Brass to figure out how to convert them efficiently. This is what I did. Lube the brass well. Process them though the 300 blackout resizing die. About two out of eight have a split neck. Who cares, that part gets trimmed off. After that, off to the RCBS trimmer. If you take the handle off, the shaft fits on your half inch drill. Set the thing to 1.368 and resized them a bunch. Like a hot knife through butter. Next step is the swager.

After all this, they appeared to have a shoulder a little higher than required so I resized them again, tumbled the lube off them and now I sit with my priming tool trying to figure out what weight bullets to reload. This cut off a couple steps and seemed to work without any issue. I loaded a test round with no primer or powder and it chambered and extracted with no problems.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yo, dh1633pm, this is good poop for me. I've had a 17-year hiatus from reloading and can use all the tips I can get. I bought a new RCBS press while on leave in May and can't wait to get back into the groove. Hope I can find all of my old reloading gear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
Very nice!
Are you going to anneal the cases? Some folks say it isn't necessary, others (like me) do it routinely: if I'm going to take the time and trouble to make the case, I want it to last as long as possible.
But, I've never done a side-by-side comparison to see how much better case life annealing gives you, so it may be one of those "time cost-benefit" things.
I have never annealed brass. I guess I could add this step. What would you recommend as the method? I too have heard that cutting down the brass makes annealing a necessity. I planned on giving it a try to see how the brass works. I have over a 1000 spare 5.56 brass. All shiny and the crimps removed. I ordered a LE Wilson case gauge from Midway today. I won't want to finish any rounds until I see how I did.

I have two reloading presses to use. One is a co-ax and the other is a C&H single stage. I only have shell holders for .308 and .223. I use the co-ax for most reloading chores. The C&H is good for pulling bullets and swaging lead. I have a dillon for removing crimps, a Hornady powder measure, and an RCBS trimmer which was very handy in trimming the brass down.

I like the 7.62 x 39 round and have one AK and a CZ527. I only reload the CZ. It shoot nice. When I read about the blackout, I wanted one for the bullet choices and figured it would be like having a more accurate and flexible AK round.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Re. annealing - Some folks have fairly elaborate setups with spinning trays, etc., some believe they can eyeball the brass and know when it's done. I'm not clever enough to do either.

I simply scaled down the caseholder I made to anneal Martini-Henry brass. At $7 each, you want that brass to last a while.

Take a .223 case to the hardware store, look in the copper fittings section to find a reducer (I think it's a 3/8 to 1/4", but I'm not absolutely certain). You want the lower half of the .223 case to be a floppy fit in the big end of the reducer. Solder the smaller end of that reducer onto a rod or copper tubing that you can chuck into your variable speed drill.
Get some Tempilaq temperature-sensing lacquer or a heat crayon, either from a welding supply place or Brownells, Midway, etc. You want something in the 165 degree F range. Paint the case neck and shoulder with a stripe of Tempilaq.
Chuck the caseholder in your drill, get a bucket of water, and fire up the propane torch.
Spin case in drill, hold neck in flame until Tempilaq melts, drop the case into the bucket of water.
Water hardens iron alloys, but does not harden copper alloys (like brass): it’s important to quench to ensure the casehead doesn't get softened.

There are assuredly faster ways to do it, but doing it this way gives you control over each case individually, and you only have to do it once (unlike the Martini-Henry where you do it every other loading). A few hundred 300 BLK cases will last me quite a while.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
Good information. However one question. "You want something in the 165 degree F range". Does this mean you heat to 165? I regularly dry my brass in the oven at 200 degrees. Isn't a little over 600 degrees the correct amount of temperature? I liked your method for holding the brass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,250 Posts
Figured. I think I will test some of the brass I have already processed to see how many time it lasts. Then I might consider annealing. I did see a lot of internet how to's on it. I am waiting for a couple things so I can begin shooting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
218 Posts
here is another solution brads warehouse has brass for 128.00 for 500 rounds . thats sized and the primer pocket swagged .
to the op the blackout is very reloader friendly and there is a wide selection of powders and bullets that will work.
currently for super sonics I am using lil-gun for 110 grain sierra varminters .
at 19.6 grains per load your dollar goes along way and if you get a can and shoot subs then 1680 is a pretty good powder . I use 10.4 grains with 220 grain matchkings . I love this round even with out a supresor it as a mild report and pretty soft recoil . my smith and wesson has been very accurate.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top