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Varmint Grenades Revisited!!

Share information about reloading the .204 Ruger.

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Posts: 417
Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 7:30 pm
Location: Manitoba Canada
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 6:54 pm
To date, I have little success with varmint grenades in any caliber. In a 243 the were complete CRAP, my savage 22-250 would actually shoot them very well but with only 1 powder charge. And also thus far, 204 results have been luke warm....untill today. Previous attempts with this bullet were with them seated way to deep in the case and now that I know magazine length is best for accuracy, I seated to an AOL of 2.335" and began shooting. Fired 8 five shot groups at 100 yards and this is the first time I have seen a load stay under an inch for all charges fired. Smallest group was .354" and the biggest was .800" avergaed out to just a hair over 1/2" for the series of charges! I had pretty much dismised this bullet due to it's poor BC but at calling distances of 250 yards or less it should do the trick. The last charge in the string was 2/10 over hodgdon book max with benchmark and this charge was showing signs of pressure! Bolt was sticky on the upswing but this charge also was responsible for the .354" group!?! For use in the summer on when at short range calling distance.....I may have a new favorite bullet!!!
Remington Model 700 SPS 17 Remington Fireball Nikon Buckmaster 6-18X40SF, Remington Model 700 VSF 204 Ruger Bushnell Elite 4200 6-24X40AO, Savage Model 12 FVSS .22-250 Remington Bushnell Elite 4200 6-24X40AO

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Posts: 577
Joined: Sun Jul 02, 2006 8:59 pm
Location: Hemet California
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:59 pm
These are the bullets that the boys in central california have to shot to be legal in the condor country. The law passed by the green party. I have read some good reviews about them on Midwayusa sight. I might have to buy some and load them in case I get a chance to shoot in Condor country. Its good to know that there is success in getting accurate loads.
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Senior Member
Posts: 543
Joined: Mon Dec 26, 2005 9:39 am
Location: Pasco, WA
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:29 pm
I am getting groups under 1/2 inch with Benchmark powder pushing the 204 26 grain Varmint Grenades. I did not think that they were much better than my Sierras as far as explosiveness on sage rats and prairie dogs. I would not use them for coyotes as they would not penetrate well at all if you hit a bone.
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Please, no Sidewinder today!

Senior Member
Posts: 305
Joined: Wed Nov 26, 2008 5:05 am
PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2010 10:59 pm
The Varmint Grenades are really finicky about twist rate and seating depth.

My Shilen Select Match shoots the .204" VG's very accurately even though the barrel is a 1:12" twist. I have recorded 10 shot groups of .247" - .250" when taking pains with loading. This barrel prefers factory seating depth.

The 6mm VG's really have to be spun in a quick twist barrel. A 1:10 .243 Win. barrel usually won't do it. I had a Shilen Select Match 1:10" done up in 6mm PPC .262" neck because the Sako's 1:14 barrel threw them out sideways, base first, at the target two frames over, etc. The Shilen 1:10" still wouldn't group consistently, throwing fliers every few shots. So I reamed the throat to seat them out further and increase velocity by getting them out enough to add more powder. No go. 1:10" is too slow.

So ordered a .243 WSSM 1:8" barrel and tried that. More speed, more twist, went 1.97 with the Miller Stability Formula. They shoot little bug holes now, seated at factory depth. 3,850 fps should produce massive squirrel displacement.

Same with the .22-250 on a 40X action. I ordered a 1:10 twist Pac-Nor for the 50 grain VG's. It shoots okay, around .5" with an occasional flier. Should have gone 1:9" or even 1:8".

Ordered another Savage barrel from Pac-Nor in .223 Rem. with a 1:9 twist for the 50 grain VG. Oh dear - that's the ticket. It shoots both sides of .5" mostly under if I do my part.

Bottom line, if the lead free bullets from Barnes or Nosler, or the new Hornady's (these have tungsten added to the core metal for weight) shoot lousy the twist is too slow. These new lead free bullets, including the monolithic copper expanding types, will all require faster twists over lead core bullets.

Senior Member
Posts: 417
Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 7:30 pm
Location: Manitoba Canada
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:25 am
All I know is that until I parked the bullets OUT of the case I was very un-impressed with them. So, I suppose now I am either going to have to back off the charge a bit or seat them a tick deeper in the case as I had pressure signs at 28.9 grains of benchmark. This charge shot the best group but the bolt was sticky after firing....not acceptable!!
Remington Model 700 SPS 17 Remington Fireball Nikon Buckmaster 6-18X40SF, Remington Model 700 VSF 204 Ruger Bushnell Elite 4200 6-24X40AO, Savage Model 12 FVSS .22-250 Remington Bushnell Elite 4200 6-24X40AO

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