My primary deer hunting rifle is chambered in .260 Remington. I really like the (theoretical) penetration characteristics of the 6.5mm bullet.
Rifle: Kimber 84M
Hodgdon Extreme powders for this cartridge are H1000, H4831, H4350, VARGET, H4895, and Benchmark.
Status of Load Development
My only reasonably accurate load so far is the 120 gr. Sierra Pro-Hunter. They were good enough to take hunting this year. Still, I am getting 1½ MOA groups with it, and I would like to find a better combination.
Sierra has a new bullet, a 130 gr. HP GameKing. I have ordered some, and I want to give them a try.
I want to start working on loads using heavier bullets. I will try the 140 gr. Partition. Then I'll try the 140 gr. Interlock SP, GameKing, AccuBond, and Core-Lokt. I should probably give the Hornady 129 gr. InterLock SST and 129 gr. InterBond a try.
I should perhaps try some other powders. I have tried several bullets, but my load tests have used only H4831SC and H4350. The cases I loaded to fire-form my brass were fairly accurate, and I believe they had H1000 in them. Also, I have (I think) a bottle of Reloder 19 to try.
|Light Game: 120 gr. Sierra Pro-Hunter|
This has clearly been the most accurate bullet in my Kimber so far, giving me 1½ MOA groups. I will be looking for something better, but until then, this is what I will take hunting.
|Light Game: 130 gr. Sierra HP GameKing|
Sierra has a 130 gr. HP GameKing bullet. Evidently, it is new. The bullets of this type in other calibers are supposed to be a bit tougher. My initial testing suggests that it likes H1000, so I will need to do some load development with that. I also tried H4350, H4831, and RL19. There is no data available at this point, but I have interpolated Hodgdon data.
125 gr. Nosler Partition: Dismal results with both H4831 and H4350. This bullet touches the lands at approximately 2.777" COAL.
120 gr. Barnes TSX: I got some okay results with these using H4350, but nothing sub-MOA. Seating this bullet to a 2.700" COAL seems to give just the right initial clearance from the lands, and also lines the case mouth up with the uppermost groove, allowing me to give it a heavy crimp.
120 gr. Sierra Pro-Hunter: Okay results with this bullet using H4350, after some misleadingly good groups. I am seating this bullet to 2.750" COAL.
120 gr. Hornady A-Max: Poor results using H4350, H1000, and RL19. Touches the lands at 2.802", seating them at 2.775".
140 gr. Nosler Partition: This bullet touches the lands at 2.795" so a seating depth of 2.775" seems like a good place to start. Not so great results with H4831 (smallest group was 1.710").
130 gr. Sierra HP GameKing: I want this new bullet to work, because it has ideal weight and construction. Initial results with H1000 are hopeful, while H4350, H4831, and RL19 performed worse (in that order). Touches the lands at 2.673" COAL, so I am seating them to 2.650" COAL.
Hodgdon H1000: Need to experiment with this powder more, as it seems capable of good accuracy in this rifle. However, it yields compressed charges, which presentes some seating difficulties.
Reloder 19: I bought a bottle of this to try in the .260 Remington. It meters okay. We'll see how it performs.
Reloder 22: I bought a bottle of this a few years ago. It isn't the best velocity powder for this cartridge, but I think I should try it, in the hope that it might prove more accurate.