308 Beyond 1K YARDS

caliglockleet

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What’s the best way to achieve this?
I have an AI AE MK3 chambered in 308, should be a 24” barrel.
I’ve been handloading 178 GR Hornady ELD-M’s with Varget in SIG Sauer brass...

Thoughts? Suggestions? Opinions?
 

jbailey

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what is the barrel's twist?
I have had mine out as far as just short of 2100yds. Its all about the bullet. Faster twist = longer, heavier, larger BCs bullets.
 

caliglockleet

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what is the barrel's twist?
I have had mine out as far as just short of 2100yds. Its all about the bullet. Faster twist = longer, heavier, larger BCs bullets.
1 : 12" TWIST for my rifle 24" barrel, about to have it threaded for my suppressor.
 

jwknutson17

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No problem at 1k with your setup. I shoot 800 with a 16 inch KAC SR25 APC and factory FGMM 175gr and the 16in Q the fix rifle when I had it with the same ammo.

Just go for it. You will make hits pretty easily with what you have going at 1000.


Edit... Thought you were saying just at 1k. Then that's easy. Once you get out a lot further your stretching the limits of the 308. It can be done, but better tools available. If I'm shooting farther then 1k I usually grab a Magnum.
 
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camotoe

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Your going to want a long action and lots of freebore. 215hy do well
 

OLD308

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Been doing it for years. Your set up will do it if you can. I used 175 SMKs for ever. Recently switched to the Lapua 175 Scenar L. I like them better. Out of my 24" 1-12 twist with 8208 XBR, 210 primers and Lapua brass this hit 2720 ish with no pressure signs. Not the optimal set up for that distance, but is does it. Good luck. FYI it was 31.5 mills with a hundred yard zero to a mile.
 

Dippy

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I’m developing a 185 Berger juggernaut load for 1k+ shooting with IMR4064. Well she how she flys!
 
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clcustom1911

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I was doing IMR4064 with 175g SMK at 2750 out of a 26", 1:10 twist. DA of about 2400 at 1000-1100 regularly. Shouldn't be an issue with the newer, higher BC bullets.

37.5 MOA to center punch @ 1050.
 
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aaronk

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That 12 twist is gonna hurt you, but at least it's not in a 20" barrel. I've been very impressed with Berger's 180g Elite Hunter. I've pushed it to 1,500 yards with a 4th round hit. Know your wind, have a good spotter, and hopefully you'll have target placement where you can see splash.
 

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1 : 12" TWIST for my rifle 24" barrel, about to have it threaded for my suppressor.
Ive Shot out to 1200 or so with a 24” barrel 1:12 twist and pushing 175gn SMK’s for years. It’ll do it, but once you start going much heavier than the 175’s (ie 180’s, 190’s) a 1:10 is much better suited than the 1:12.

Better be on top of your wind calls though...
 

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As others have said the 1/12 is going to limit you a bit I your bullet selection. Beyond just trying to go fast and high BC, you really want to look at transonic stability and low velocity SD/ES.

A good example is something like the 175 SMKs, jammed over a compressed load of Varget. Not a super fast load nor is the BC sexy but with single digit SDs I’ve puts out to around 1800m in high DA on E-type like targets, mind you conditions will have to be perfect and even if you do everything right you’ll miss more that you hit, but it can be fun or even functional.
 

caliglockleet

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As others have said the 1/12 is going to limit you a bit I your bullet selection. Beyond just trying to go fast and high BC, you really want to look at transonic stability and low velocity SD/ES.

A good example is something like the 175 SMKs, jammed over a compressed load of Varget. Not a super fast load nor is the BC sexy but with single digit SDs I’ve puts out to around 1800m in high DA on E-type like targets, mind you conditions will have to be perfect and even if you do everything right you’ll miss more that you hit, but it can be fun or even functional.
Sounds like it might be better to do a barrel swap and move over to something like a 6mm creedmoor or 6.5 creedmoor at this rate. I bought the rifle brand new, and have less than 200 rounds on the barrel.. maybe I can sell it lol
 

acudaowner

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if they can do it so can you with enough practice
and they do it in what sounds to be a strong wind
 
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HogsLife

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Sounds like it might be better to do a barrel swap and move over to something like a 6mm creedmoor or 6.5 creedmoor at this rate. I bought the rifle brand new, and have less than 200 rounds on the barrel.. maybe I can sell it lol
Run whatch Brung.

A lot of advantages in shooting a 308.

Easy to load for
Inherently Accurate
Exceptionally Long barrel life
Great training round. In order to hit you had better nail your wind call.
Plethora of loads and factory ammo
Learn to manage the recoil with proper fundamentals.

Shoot what you got man. Smoke that barrel and then move on. Everyone needs at least 1 .308. Shoot it, learn to call your wind, and buy a 6.5 CM down the road or once you smoke that barrel, rebarrel it in a 6.5 or 6mm.
 
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caliglockleet

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Run whatch Brung.

A lot of advantages in shooting a 308.

Easy to load for
Inherently Accurate
Exceptionally Long barrel life
Great training round. In order to hit you had better nail your wind call.
Plethora of loads and factory ammo
Learn to manage the recoil with proper fundamentals.

Shoot what you got man. Smoke that barrel and then move on. Everyone needs at least 1 .308. Shoot it, learn to call your wind, and buy a 6.5 CM down the road or once you smoke that barrel, rebarrel it in a 6.5 or 6mm.
What kind of barrel life does the 308 have (estimate?)
Maybe Ill just keep practicing with this setup for awhile....is their a better bullet to work with? Max for the 1:12 is gonna be below 180 grains, right? I was reading about NOSLER RDF's and BERGER long range low drag bullets, of course SMK's... whats considered the best?
 

HogsLife

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What kind of barrel life does the 308 have (estimate?)
Maybe Ill just keep practicing with this setup for awhile....is their a better bullet to work with? Max for the 1:12 is gonna be below 180 grains, right? I was reading about NOSLER RDF's and BERGER long range low drag bullets, of course SMK's... whats considered the best?
Depends on the accuracy you’re looking for, loads you’re running, type of shooting you’re doing, if you’re over cleaning and using a bunch of hard core chemicals in your barrel, etc, I’d say a safe estimate is 8k-10k. Compare that to a 6.5 (2500-3500) and a 6mm (1500-2500)

As far as projectiles go, I never shot anything other than 175gn SMK’s with 44 gns of Varget. 1:12 , and 1:11.25 twist worked fine for that. Great results and had no reason to try anything else. They worked. 168’s SMK’s shoot really good out to 600 or so then they kind of apart. Some may disagree but that’s been my experience.

175 SMK’s , 44gns Varget works pretty well in damn near every .308. Obviously you need to test that yourself. I typically start out load work up around 39.5 gns of Varget and work up to around 45 gns in .5 gns increments typically I get flattened primers and sticky bolt around 44.5 - 45 gns. Never fails, 44 gns is typically where I settle in. Lapua Brass.

190’s are a definite 1:10 IMO.
 
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Dippy

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I’m stabilizing 190 smk out of a 24” 11 1/4 twist barrel at 2500 FPS 250’ elevation and 35F. Granted I’ve since moved onto 185 Berger juggernauts
 
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caliglockleet

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Depends on the accuracy you’re looking for, loads you’re running, type of shooting you’re doing, if you’re over cleaning and using a bunch of hard core chemicals in your barrel, etc, I’d say a safe estimate is 8k-10k. Compare that to a 6.5 (2500-3500) and a 6mm (1500-2500)

As far as projectiles go, I never shot anything other than 175gn SMK’s with 44 gns of Varget. 1:12 , and 1:11.25 twist worked fine for that. Great results and had no reason to try anything else. They worked. 168’s SMK’s shoot really good out to 600 or so then they kind of apart. Some may disagree but that’s been my experience.

175 SMK’s , 44gns Varget works pretty well in damn near every .308. Obviously you need to test that yourself. I typically start out load work up around 39.5 gns of Varget and work up to around 45 gns in .5 gns increments typically I get flattened primers and sticky bolt around 44.5 - 45 gns. Never fails, 44 gns is typically where I settle in. Lapua Brass.

190’s are a definite 1:10 IMO.
Yeah maybe I'll try that in a future load, I haven't done much with SMK's... just the 178GR ELD-Match from Hornady. I'm going to finish off this SIG brass before I move to Lapua brass. I was considering Berger but Im not sure what bullet to go with. I'm seeing 175GR VLD's, 175 GR Long Range BT Target, and this guy's talking about 185 Juggernauts..
Can my barrel even shoot 185's?
 
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HogsLife

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Yeah maybe I'll try that in a future load, I haven't done much with SMK's... just the 178GR ELD-Match from Hornady. I'm going to finish off this SIG brass before I move to Lapua brass. I was considering Berger but Im not sure what bullet to go with. I'm seeing 175GR VLD's, 175 GR Long Range BT Target, and this guy's talking about 185 Juggernauts..
Can my barrel even shoot 185's?
All good rounds I’m sure. Probably better than the SMK’s, I just don’t have any experience with them. As far as the 185’s, yeah you could go with them, I just don’t think you’re gonna get the performance out of them that you would in a 1:10. Heavier bullets require a tighter twist to stabilize them. Heavy isn’t always better unless you can push it faster. Lighter and faster can work well too. (175’s / 178’s) should work well in your setup. You just need to find a load that meets the performance you’re looking for out of your rifle setup.

You’re not gonna find some magical bullet out there that’s gonna turn your 308 into a laser beam., and if you’re looking for a laser, you’re going the wrong direction. A 308 is basically an indirect fire weapon system at a grand. Lol but people have been doing it for a looooong time successfully provided you can call your wind within .25 mph🤣.
All Joking aside, honestly with your setup, I don’t think heavier is the answer. 170-180 gn bullets IMO will serve you best with a 1:12
 
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MontanaMarine

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I shoot the 208 Amax out of my 1/12 Rem factory barrels. 3.10" oal kisses lands in that long throat. 48 gr RL17 in milsurp brass gives 2580 fps from a 20.5" bbl.

Here at 4000' el, it is pretty consistent out to 1400-1500 yards.

SWFA 10X on a 40 moa Nightforce base provides useable 30 mils 'up' in the erector. Plenty of elevation travel for direct hold out to about 2000 yards, but in reality this load is falling apart at around a mile. Maybe a faster twist would keep it together through transonic.

Lots of fun.





 

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You are better off with something really stable that doesn’t drastically increase its own drag (increased drop) than a heavy marginally stable, slower, high BC offering because your twist is so slow and you’ll most-likely never get a heavy 30 cal fast enough to really see the higher BC.

If you want to go as far as you can with that 1:12.. Run 175s or try get the Warner Flatline 160s coming out really fast and run it hot.

Drive out West find a spot in BLM with 24inHg or < Station and be ready to shoot before the sun rises. Make sure your FFP is not facing East or even South - East facing..

Or.... get another gun :)
 
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tnichols

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This question comes up a lot. You’ve been given good advice above. To me it comes down to DA, TOF, MV, and stabilization. If you’re out west in a high DA, a 308 will do real fine. If you’re in a low to negative DA. your results will be disappointing. Good luck and have fun.
 
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Crazy1323

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I have shot a 20” 308 out to 1000+ using the Hornady 178 ELD’s and handloads.

If shooting KNOWN distance and little wind, 308 out to 1000 isn’t too difficult. However, at that distance the bullet is dropping fast. Small difference in estimated vs actual distance can result is missing high or low pretty easily.

Knowing the exact difference and having consistent MV’s becomes very important shooting 308’s out that distance.
 

hitman

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I had an AI in .308 and shoot the 155 Lapua's at 1000 yds all the time. I never got it past that just due to the range limits but 1000 was not bad at all. There is a post over the LMT about a 13.5" LMT at 1100 yds. I would have to check my book but I recall I had the 155's right at 2900.
 

caliglockleet

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I had an AI in .308 and shoot the 155 Lapua's at 1000 yds all the time. I never got it past that just due to the range limits but 1000 was not bad at all. There is a post over the LMT about a 13.5" LMT at 1100 yds. I would have to check my book but I recall I had the 155's right at 2900.
Everyone has been saying the 175's are the way to go! ahhhhh
 
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hitman

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Lapua lists the BC of the 155's at .508 and you can push them up to around 2950. I will see if I can find my load I used since you have the same rifle.
 

caliglockleet

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I recently sat down with a shooter who was shooting out to 2200 yards or so with his 308. I believe he was using a custom 1:8 twist on the barrel and 185 juggernauts
 

MontanaMarine

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Lapua lists the BC of the 155's at .508 and you can push them up to around 2950. I will see if I can find my load I used since you have the same rifle.

I'm not currently shooting the 155 Scenar, but a few years back I did buy 1000 of them from Powder Valley and shot all of them through the 308s. In my experiences, the published BC of .508 seemed a little high. I found using .460 lined my trajectory up with my trajectory table very accurately out to a mile.
 

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Well, for what is worth, with my ACI .308 I was very routinely hitting MOA at 800 yards...(the extent of our range) and he ammo I was using was Federal Gold Match, SMK, etc.

You mileage may vary.
 

jim996

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I'm not currently shooting the 155 Scenar, but a few years back I did buy 1000 of them from Powder Valley and shot all of them through the 308s. In my experiences, the published BC of .508 seemed a little high. I found using .460 lined my trajectory up with my trajectory table very accurately out to a mile.
Lapua recently revised the BC on this bullet to .460. I've shot this bullet to 1000 and .460 entered into JM Ballistics is spot on for drop.
 
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jim996

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I've found 178 ELDMs to be scary accurate to 1000 yards with the .308. 1000 yards is easy with them and I can consistently hit a 12 inch steel plate. 1200 is a lot more difficult.

My rifle is an AX, 24 inch, 12 twist barrel. Pushing the bullet at 2770 over 44.5 grains of RS52, Lapua Brass, CCI 200 primers.
 

stealthgoat

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I don't find 1,000 easy at my skill level, but depending on wind it's not too bad for a IPSC or larger size target.
This morning for example wind gusts would quickly push me off the target if I didn't catch a wind change. And I am not a great wind reader, so that still happens.

For me though moving out to 1,250 yards is a completely different animal - even in good conditions I have a lot more misses than I do hits. If the wind is gusting intermittent or switching, it's not pretty

FN A3G, 1/12" twist. 175smk 44.0 varget 2,667 ave.

I have also thought about changing bullets, but at least for I suspect I am still the weak link
 

Bwells

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I choose to roll heavy. Bigger splash to see out there, and reduced wind drift and long supersonic range with that high BC.

I give up magazine loading with this load. That's a concession I'm willing to make.

What's your coal with that load?
 

slowlearner

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AI AT with a factory 24” barrel. Longer loading with Berger 175 VLD’s and a heavy charge of Varget has it moving around 2790fps. Consistent hits out at 1358 yards in Georgia. Hits in matches at 1100+ yards in Wyoming and about 7 mils of wind.

This load also works in my AW magazine, so nothing super crazy.

Find something with a decent SD, and then try to focus on the wind.

More than doable with a 308.
 

jim996

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Max I've shot mine to is 1400 yards. About 1 hit in 8 at that range and lots of dirt sprayed on the gong from rounds coming in at a high angle and falling short. It's like playing the lottery at that range with .308, more like firing artillery.

178 is the heaviest bullet I've tried, don't think the 208s will work in my rifle as it's a 12 twist.
 

MontanaMarine

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@MontanaMarine

So I see you’re getting good results from 208s in a 1-12”. Have you tried anything heavier in that or a faster twisted 308?

I've shot the 220gr SMK with good results. The 220 SMK is a bit shorter than the 208 Amax, roughly 1.48" vs 1.53".

Also shot the 215 Berger. In the 20.5" 308, results were not that good, about 1.5 moa at 100 yards. Through the 22" 308 it was sub-moa, and held stability/accuracy to 1500+ yards. That was summertime, at 4300 ft.

They are all on the ragged edge per the Berger stability calculator.

I haven't tried a 1/10 308. But whenever these barrels are used up, I'll go 1/10, maybe 1/9.
 
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In the UK a discipline called Match Rifle exists. 308W only, scopes, front rest with rifle supported by hand and hand on rest, no back bags. Start range is 1000 & generally goes to 1200 but 1500 where range space permits. Target has 24in bull with 14.4 in X ring. Loads tend towards Berger 215s, long throats, ~49 grains R17, Molly, 32 to 34 in bores. Velocities in 2700 - 2750fps range such loads, sometimes tad more. Many maximum scores with high V counts have been shot at 1200 yds - ie 15 shots into a 24in circle with perhaps 10-12 in a 14.4 in circle. A more usual good score at 1200 perhaps 13 or 14 bulls and 10vs. The 215s are supersonic at sea level to 1500 yards. Given good bullets in the 200-220 grain range, a long throat and a stiff but safe load as described above, whilst 308W will never be a 338 or 30 cal magnum, its more capable at 1000 yds+ than it's often given credit for. For interest, run the numbers for a 215 Berger 2725 fps through JBM and cf the 6.5s. I for one wouldnt be standing up at 1400 yards if such a bullet was going to be launched at me. It it hit it would be carrying more energy than a hot 9mm load and if it missed, it would be sufficiently close that I would know it was meant for me 🙄
 
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Bugalug

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Ps... With the 215s in the UK, it has been found thst whilst 10 twist can work very well, 9 or 9.5 twist bores have perhaps been better.
 

Bugalug

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I might add, that a memorable UK record in MR shooting was many years ago when Dr Robin Pizer hit a 4ft (maybe 4.5ft) bullseye 7 times in 10 shots from 2640yds. It was way back in the 70s or early 80s and I'm guessing was shot using 190grain sierras or similar technology. Conditions were described as 'absolutely perfect'.
 
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