Ok chaps, some more questions for you today.
As some of you will be aware, I'm currently jumping through the hoops required to apply for my FAC. I got my GP on-side this morning, leaving one referee to meet up with and the jobs a good'un. Don't expect any problems with the grant and - just to annoy the wife () - I've decided I'm going to reload for .308 when it gets granted (fingers crossed). I've been dithering about whether to do so for 28 gauge / .410 for some time, but since I've got a bit of money to spend on getting set up for stalking, I'm going to try and get some reloading kit out of that budget too.
I'm pretty clear on what I want to try, why and how I want to achieve it. However, if anyone could answer the following for me, I'd very much appreciate it:
1. I've put down 500 rounds to keep, 200 to buy on my application form. I've also said in my covering letter that I want the police to interpret the 500 number as "200 loaded rounds, 300 expanding bullets". I figure this will allow me to buy a handful of factory ammo, three or four types of bullets for loading and to keep a stock of hand-loads as well. Does this sound reasonable, too low, or too high?
2. My wife wants to buy me a birthday present - always nice. I've told her she can buy me a reloading manual or two, if I get my ticket signed off. I'll probably be using Lee kit, coming from a friend at a heavy discount, so I figure the Lee manual ought to be a good buy. I've also seen the Lyman manual recommended a lot here and elsewhere. If I buy both of those books, am I buying the same thing twice, or will they both give different takes on how to go about loading?
3. I'm not in a position to do anything yet as I don't have my ticket. If it gets granted though, I'm thinking of using Sierra bullets in PPU cases. I realise that these are cheaper makes - will they do for hunting purposes? I don't need sub-½MOA loads, just "hunting" accuracy.
4. I'll be reloading both because I want to make ammo cheaper and also because I find ballistics fascinating. This probably means I'll do some reasonably eccentric experiments like putting 110gr heads in .308 cases and trying them - once perfected / checked for legality - on muntjac.
Whilst I'm not particularly looking for criticism / praise as to my ideas, I'm thinking of running Hodgdon H4895 as a slow powder for reasonably ordinary loads and CFE223 as a faster powder for harder-hitting and lighter rounds. (One of the reloading data sheets I've picked up lists a load or two with the latter that touches 3000ftlbs - a fair punch for a .308, and I bet it'll wear the barrel out fast too.)
So, do those two powders seem like a reasonable pair to run for slow/fast?
5. Further to the above, I've heard you can run H4895 down to 60% of maximum and make a .308 with a 100gr bullet shoot like a .243. That sounds interesting, if only from a theoretical point of view. Does anyone do this and - if so - for any particular reason other than curiosity?
I think that's everything I've got for now. I'm really enjoying doing my reading about this subject. I've seen reloading referred to as the "dark art" here and elsewhere, but it's just the thing for an under-stimulated mind
Thanks for any answers / opinions you can give,