Written by Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Duane Siercks
Here at Sierra, the Tech Room personnel field numerous calls and e-mails on a wide variety of questions regarding reloading, shooting, and trajectory situations. There are some questions that have become very frequent. I will touch on one of these at this time.
When reloading, a common situation that arises will be a load that fills the cartridge case to the extent that when the bullet is seated, it actually comes in contact with the powder charge and may actually compact the charge to an extent. I have had many callers remark that they did not feel this was correct or that it automatically made the load dangerous. Not necessarily so. If you are using a powder that has been tested in that cartridge and with that bullet weight, start at the minimum load listed and increase the powder charge in relatively small increments. Then, always watching for any signs of excess pressures, if the powder charge begins to fill the case to the level where the bullet touches the powder be certain that the load does not exceed published data. If pressures look good, the load is probably going to be fine. The compression usually occurs with the slower powders.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to give us a call.