Any AR loads for 70gr Nosler RDF?

Feb 16, 2017
156
13
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#1
anybody had time to work up a load for the 70gr Nosler rdf in their AR yet? I'm looking for a good load range for the rdf and CFE223. This is out of my 16" rifle length gas rainier barrel, if that matters. I appreciate the info!
mason
 
Feb 10, 2017
154
57
28
SNJ
#4
Well I just ordered 300 of them, guess I'll find out sooner or later. Is the issue jump tolerance?
From what I've read they actually prefer a long jump, like 0.030"ish. I have 500 sitting on the bench right now, but no time or any real confidence in them is holding me back.
 

CMH

Gunny Sergeant
Dec 17, 2010
1,600
174
63
Billings, MT
#5
Not an AR load, but some RDF data...I have been trying them out in my Tikka T3. I was shooting Berger 75 gr. VLD's. I decided to give the RDF's a try. Worked up some loads, with a variety of 223-ish powders I had laying around. Had the best accuracy and velocity with H4895 seated fairly long (Don't have my notes in front of me, but well beyond AR mag length). I tried some seated to AR depth just out of curiosity, and chrono and group data showed they didn't perform as well in my rifle as the long seated loads. They shot well enough I ordered a bunch to fine tune with.

I know this is not exactly what you were looking for but there isn't a ton of data out on these just yet, so I figured I would offer mine up.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#7
Not an AR load, but some RDF data...I have been trying them out in my Tikka T3. I was shooting Berger 75 gr. VLD's. I decided to give the RDF's a try. Worked up some loads, with a variety of 223-ish powders I had laying around. Had the best accuracy and velocity with H4895 seated fairly long (Don't have my notes in front of me, but well beyond AR mag length). I tried some seated to AR depth just out of curiosity, and chrono and group data showed they didn't perform as well in my rifle as the long seated loads. They shot well enough I ordered a bunch to fine tune with.

I know this is not exactly what you were looking for but there isn't a ton of data out on these just yet, so I figured I would offer mine up.
its better than nothing, thanks for the info. I've got some 4895 around so if cfe223 doesn't work out then I'll give that a try. Thanks!


 

JLR

R Bros Rifles
Apr 17, 2008
576
0
16
Washington State
www.rbrosrifles.com
#10
I've heard a lot of good things about these bullets with xbr 8208. Somewhere around 24.5gr give or take. I have only had time to run one load and it didn't work out like I wanted, but I'm going to pursue it more when time allows.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#12
Well I got some of the blem 70gr RDF's in today. Seated a dummy round to max mag length (2.260). Compared this to the 75gr hornady HPBT and 77gr Sierra Matchking seated at the same OAL. Written above each round is the cbto for each.
L-R 70gr RDF, 75gr hornady hpbt, 77gr SMK.
 

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mcfred

Sergeant
Feb 17, 2011
697
32
28
SW USA
#13
I bought a pound of CFE223 to test with ±70gr projectiles. IMO CFE isn't worth shit. 3 different bolt guns, 2 are 9-twist .223 Rem and one .204 Ruger. Groups are huge compared to other powders in weighed, annealed, fireformed brass and ±1 milligram weighed charges. 70 VLDs, 69 SMKs, 70 RDFs, and 69 TMKs did not work at all with CFE.

I also tried Blem 70 RDFs. I couldn't keep them on a 8x11" sheet of paper@200yds jumping them from 2.260 OAL using CFE223. I could get MOA at 200yds with AA2230 about 3070fps jamming them in the lands (single feeding). So far I'm unimpressed with CFE and/or Nolser Blem 70RDFs.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#14
My rifle shoots .75" groups at 100yds using cfe 223 and 75gr hornadys so I have some faith in cfe223 as a powder. I'm going to try to make it out Friday to shoot some of the 70gr RDFs and see how they do.
 

lennyo3034

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 18, 2010
1,715
117
63
33
Southern MD
#15
I can't get these to shoot out of DMR. 20" krieger barrel with .223 wylde chamber. I've tried loaded to AR mag length as well as ASC mag length (2.310") with no luck. They seem to do better out of a compass lake chamber possibly due to the shorter throat. Either way, I'm sticking to 77 TMK for my DMR.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#16
Finally got out yesterday to shoot some loads with the Nosler RDF... Terrible out of my AR (rainier arms rock creek stainless 16" barrel rifle length gas). I shot three charges 25.3, 25.6, 25.9gr of CFE 223 and the 70gr RDF seated at 2.260 OAL. All three charges shot around 3 MOA at 100 YDS. By comparison this rifle shoots consistent .75 - 1.0 MOA with my 75gr Hornady HPBT/ CFE 223 load. On a good note, I shot the same 3 loads with the Nosler RDF out of my Mossberg MVP (24" threaded barrel, bone stock) and the 25.6gr load went just under 1.0 MOA which is about on par with my go to load for this gun using 75gr Hornady HPBT. So there is hope that the RDF will serve some purpose for me. Hope this helps you guys out!
 
Apr 10, 2012
87
0
6
Lafayette, Looziana
#17
Shot two groups today that I'm happy with and they're Varget loads shot from 200 yards.
first load was 23.8 grns of Varget, 70 grn bullet in Lake City (2012) brass loaded to 2.30 inches through my 20" barreled AR. THIS load went into .885 four rounds, 200 yards. Second load with same setup but 24.0 grns Varget went five rounds into 1.45" at two hundred yards.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#18
Shot two groups today that I'm happy with and they're Varget loads shot from 200 yards.
first load was 23.8 grns of Varget, 70 grn bullet in Lake City (2012) brass loaded to 2.30 inches through my 20" barreled AR. THIS load went into .885 four rounds, 200 yards. Second load with same setup but 24.0 grns Varget went five rounds into 1.45" at two hundred yards.
what barrel are you using?
 

CMH

Gunny Sergeant
Dec 17, 2010
1,600
174
63
Billings, MT
#19
Again, not AR loads, but I have never found anything that shot well with CFE223. H4895 has been a consistently good performer out of a couple of my 223 rifles.
 
Apr 10, 2012
87
0
6
Lafayette, Looziana
#20
what barrel are you using?
Well you probably won't believe me but it's an AR Stoner SDM-R 20 inch barrel that I picked up for $140 from MidwayUSA. I just saw that the same barrel is on sale for $104!!!

My buddy and I each bought one a while ago and BOTH of them are friggin tack drivers. From reading some of the reviews it seems like it can be a crapshoot with quality but both of ours are beautifully machined and finished. Heck it's worth a shot at a hundred and four bucks! We've shot groups hovering around an inch with Sierra 69 gr Matchking and TMK loads at 200 yards as well.

 
Apr 10, 2012
87
0
6
Lafayette, Looziana
#21
The loads aren't real speedy with the 23.8 averaging 2680 and the 24.0 average was 2720. I started out with these loads on the light side because there's ALOT of bullet stuffed down in the case to get these rounds to go through my AR magazine! With the bullets numbers and 2720 fps, it remains transonic to 910 yards, which isn't too bad at all.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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#22
The loads aren't real speedy with the 23.8 averaging 2680 and the 24.0 average was 2720. I started out with these loads on the light side because there's ALOT of bullet stuffed down in the case to get these rounds to go through my AR magazine! With the bullets numbers and 2720 fps, it remains transonic to 910 yards, which isn't too bad at all.
Nice. I did try out the RDF with H4895, 23.6- 24.5gr, yesterday and was pleasantly surprised. Loads shrunk by half or slightly more, going 1.3-1.7" at 100yds. Still not as good as I like to see, but my usual load of cfe223 and 75gr hpbt was not shooting nearly as well as it usually does, so I may ha e just been having an off day. I'm going to bump the charge weight up and see if things shrink up at all. I'm hoping I can get these working well.
 
Apr 14, 2013
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PA
#23
Just started doing some load work up yesterday. I did a 10 shot ladder test at 100 yards with the magneto speed looking for velocity flat spots. Disclaimer! Work up at your own risk!

Rifle Specs:

18" 1:8 Green Mountain Barrel w/ Rifle Length Gas Tube

Specwar 762 Suppressor

Load Specs:

CCI 450

Virgin American Eagle Brass

8208 XBR

70gr RDF


Chrono Results: [TABLE="border: 1, cellpadding: 0, cellspacing: 0"]
[TR]
[TD]Powder Charge[/TD]
[TD]Velocity[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]23.6[/TD]
[TD]2750[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]23.8[/TD]
[TD]2768[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]24[/TD]
[TD]2778[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]24.2[/TD]
[TD]2828[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]24.4[/TD]
[TD]2814[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]24.6[/TD]
[TD]2876[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]24.8[/TD]
[TD]2899[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]25[/TD]
[TD]2931[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]25.2[/TD]
[TD]2940[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]25.4[/TD]
[TD]2974[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]

All Shots went into roughly a 1" group with 2 flyers pulling high and left. The only real determined flat spot was between 25 gr and 25.2 gr. I loaded up 15 rounds at 25.1 for group test and re-chrono to see SD and ES. Very light ejector markings at 25.2 gr and definable marks at 25.4. I will update after I make it back over to the range. If the listed BC is true, then I am very excited if I can find a load close to 2950 fps out of my 18".
 
Oct 26, 2009
13
0
0
33
Richmond, CA
#24
Any updates from those using this bullet? I've been drooling over the BC and thinking I might be able to push them nearly as fast as my 69gr SMK... That might be ambitious though, seeing the size of the bullets look nearly as long as the 77gr SMK.
 
Feb 16, 2017
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13
18
#25
I gave up quite a while ago. H4895 definitely gave better results than CFE-223, but still not good enough for me. Couldn't get better than about 1.5-2 moa out of my rainier arms rock creek AR15 barrel and even worse out of my mossberg MVP. Both of these rifles shoot .5-.75 MOA with 75gr Hornady HPBT and H4895 or CFE-223. I think I'm going to play around with the 73gr ELD-M to see if that will shoot flatter than the 75gr HPBT and maintain accuracy.
 
Mar 6, 2017
28
4
3
#26
I've spent the last week or so really trying to find some good results with this bullet. I gave up a couple months ago in my bolt gun, not because of bad accuracy, mainly because it was shooting the 80gr bergers and 75gr eld's so well I didn't want to even spend time with it.

Now I've got a new 223 bolt gun to play around with and it has a 1:8 twist barrel and so far is not liking anything over the 75gr weight. So I'm committed to spending some time with these 70gr rdf's. I've got quite a few powders I've tried, off hand the things that stood out were cfe 223 was crap and I had very promising results with varget and especially 8208xbr. I'm pretty set to go with the 8208 at this point so I'll try to post some of my results as I go forward.

The barrel in this gun is a 24" 1:8 twist

Yesterday was a pretty hot day of 90 degrees here in TN but at least I was in the shade at the range.
I started with 23gr of 8208 and went up to 23.9 in .2 increments. The promising area was between 23.7-23.9 with no real pressure signs. I might go ahead and try a little higher, Seems like some people have even gone north of 25gr so I may gradually get up to 24gr.
Here are my results starting at 23.5gr of 8208xbr as I don't have the velocity numbers of the 23.1 and 23.3gr with me at the moment.
Chrono results
23.5gr: avg 2884 fps
23.7gr: ave 2900 fps
23.9gr: ave 2961 fps

I usually load pretty carefully with my Chargemaster and double check with my beam scale, was a touch surprised to see the velocity jump 61 fps with just a .2 increase. I'm gonna keep plugging away and start messing with seating depth and see what I can get accuracy wise.
 

Unknown

Gunny Sergeant
Sep 17, 2009
3,006
91
48
Pacific Northwest,USA
#27
A friend of mine uses the RDF bullets in both his 308 and 5.56x45 improved, and says he finds them less sensitive to seating depth than any of the previous bullets he had been using. I just bought some for 308, and initial testing indicates they will shoot very well in my gas gun with .2 grains less Varget than my old "go to" load.
 

redneckbmxer24

Gunny Sergeant
Jan 15, 2005
5,772
570
113
VA
#28
I developed a load yesterday for my 18” DMR rifle to test them out. I used WCC brass, Tula KVB-223 primers, and Varget. I seated them to 2.265” OAL and didn’t touch them afterwards. I tested up to 26gr with no pressure signs and had two very nice nodes. 25.6gr was the middle charge of my high node so tested with 5rd and it was a winner. Then tested another 10rd to confirm. The load is averaging 2820 FPS with low ES/SD and great accuracy.

Today I shot them at various distances 430-1025yd using the .211 G7 claimed BC and recording what it actually took and I came up with a .202 G7 BC. It matches my recorded ballistic curve perfectly. It’s not quite as high as claimed but is still up there and way better than the 77’s.

I have a 24” BHW barrel in route and so long as they shoot well in it I plan to switch to them exclusively. I’m certain they’ll do well over 3000fps from that barrel.
 
Feb 14, 2017
583
182
43
#31
8208, TAC and CFE. I only load 223 on a progressive press so it limits the powders I'll try. I'm also not a patient handloader willing to do voodoo, black magic or rain dances to get a bullet to shoot if it doesn't show promise early on. Someone with more dedication may very well be able to get them shooting.
 
Likes: Birddog6424

redneckbmxer24

Gunny Sergeant
Jan 15, 2005
5,772
570
113
VA
#32
8208, TAC and CFE. I only load 223 on a progressive press so it limits the powders I'll try. I'm also not a patient handloader willing to do voodoo, black magic or rain dances to get a bullet to shoot if it doesn't show promise early on. Someone with more dedication may very well be able to get them shooting.
I've found loading precision ammo on a progressive press to be extremely hit or miss, especially running the powder measure with anything other than ball powder and being able to load right in the middle of a node. Even more hit or miss if running the Dillon trimmer on the press because I get a good bit of shaved jackets if you don't chamfer if seating a bullet.

I won't go to extreme measures trying to get a bullet to shoot either but I had no problems quickly finding a load that worked with this bullet. Load development was less than 30 rounds total.
 
Feb 14, 2017
583
182
43
#33
I've had good luck with it, with the right powders. Whenever I set up for my 23.8gr XBR load I'll drop 5 charges onto the scale and its never been more than +- .1gr of 119gr. Each to his own though.
 

redneckbmxer24

Gunny Sergeant
Jan 15, 2005
5,772
570
113
VA
#34
I received my 24" BHW barrel today and played with the RDF's some after getting a few rounds down the barrel. I only had 20 bullets left to try so used 10 for a ladder and 10 for loads. I used Varget again and went up to 26.3gr with no signs of pressure. 26.3gr went 3008fps. The ladder was a nice steady climb with one node which 25.7gr fell right in the middle of. I loaded and shot 2x 5 round groups at 25.7gr averaging 2935fps with an SD of 6-8fps between the two strings. Accuracy was sub 3/4moa for both groups as well as the 10 round group shot during the ladder test.

I'm going to order a few thousand of these and develop a solid load for this barrel. I'm hoping to be able to end up with a 1/2-3/4moa load in the 2950-2980fps range after the barrel breaks in/speeds up to keep me under 3000fps for PRS Tactical Light class.
 
Apr 9, 2017
96
4
8
Las Cruces, NM
#36
18" 8 twist Bear Creek Arsenal (Mid length gas) 223 Wylde
Winchester 223 brass (new)
CCI 450
70 Grain RDF


There doesn't seem to be a lot of info out there, so here is what I have done so far with my own load development . All loads are CBTO 1.795" (or about 2.248" OAL), which is .010" off the lands in my rifle.

CFE223
26.0 avg 2780 ft/s
26.5 avg 2833 ft/s
27.0 avg 2894 ft/s


All of these shot in the 1.5-2moa range. No sign of pressure but no reason to press on either.

IMR 8208 XBR

23.0
23.5 avg 2780 ft/s
24.0


Then I started only chronographing the loads that were shooting sub moa. The group for 23.5 grains of 8208 measured .375". Definite pressure signs at 24.0.

Benchmark

22.5 avg 2740 ft/s
23.0 avg 2775 ft/s
23.5


The 23.0 was the best group at about .4"

The benchmark was showing some pressure at 23.5

**As always, work loads up carefully. These were safe in my rifle, but your results may vary**
 
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