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22" 7mm-08 X-bolt doesn't like SSTs

JackBwrJackBwr Member Posts: 1,756 ✭✭✭
I've got a Browning X-bolt wgm in 7mm-08 that does not seem to like the Hornady SSTs. I bought two boxes of new superperformance 139 gn and tried sighting in with these. I chased them all over the paper.
The factory loads wouldn't pattern at all. These had 48 grains of factory superperformance powder. (I pulled some apart).

Then I switched to the cheaper Hornady Whitetail version, 139 gn with the shorter bullets and soft points. Same weight, but 100 fps slower (44 grains of factory superperformance powder). First shot was a bullseye at 100. The next 5 shots were all in the bullseye. Under 1" group with factory ammo. So it wasnt my shooting with the SSTs. This was using a lead sled as well.

I had also purchased a box of 139 gn SST bullets to load with.
I measured the barrel with an OAL gauge and left the bullets out about .04 behind the rifling. I loaded these with Varget, incrementally higher a half grain at a time. From 40.5 to 43.5 (max). I tried these today. The 40.5 and 41 grain loads did the best but 1.5" at that. The higher loads spread out to 3"+.

All I hear is good things about these bullets but I'm not impressed with them in this gun. Am I doing something wrong or has anybody else struggled with them? Maybe 139 grain isn't a good weight for these in this particular gun?


  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,348 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Reloading is part art and science. What your rifle likes in terms of bullet, powder, primer and case could be different than my rifle.

    Are you neck sizing. Have you trimmed the cases and deburred/uniformed the flash holes? Are you using a good stiff press? Shell holder same brand as dies? When seating the bullets do seat 1/2 way then spin the case 180 and finish seating.

    I once had a 700 Rem Varmint Special in 223. That rifle shot factory ammo better than my reloads. I tried nearly every primer, bullet, powder, case and 3 different sets of dies in 2 different presses. The rifle always shot their ammo better than mine. I gave that rifle away to a friend that would buy ammo for it. The other 100+ guns I have reloaded for will shoot my ammo better, maybe not a lot better but sometimes a whole lot better.

    I like guns with crisp triggers. In rifles I have the best luck with about 5 pounds damping force at the front of the forearm, or glass bedded and free floating.

    My favorite 7mm bullet is the 162 grain boat tail Hornady.
  • skyfishskyfish Member Posts: 1,068 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I have had good luck, but never used with your combo. In my son's 270 WSM, the 130's will shoot almost half inch, but are only jumping .005-006". My 7mm SAUM shoots the 139 about an inch. But has longer throat and more jump. It does shoot the 162gr better. About .8". But it's a light model 7 with 22" barrel.

    Your rifle may not like the SST of that weight, or maybe not the super performance ammo. If you reload, it may be the COAL needs adjustment.
  • FrancFFrancF Member Posts: 35,278 ******
    edited November -1
    I have ZERO Fact- in 7mm-08. In my guns SST/A-Max like longer tubes & Mid twist & slightly lower velocity's. If that helps....
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