Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by muleman69, Jul 24, 2019.
Has anyone loaded these for the .280AI for hunting?
I've been trying a few of these bullets as I go along working up loads for various cartridges. Rather than go for the heaviest bullets for a particular cartridge, I've been backing down slightly for the solid bullets due to length. In the 7mm, I've found that the 143 grain Hammer Hunter is excellent for this cartridge when used for hunting. I get very good accuracy and no, I'm not going to claim that my 100 yard targets are in the .2s... but I am in the 1/2" range repeatedly (consistently) which is suitable for my use. Generally speaking I will run these out to about 500 yards before switching to a larger cartridge.
When I want all the gusto I can stand, I switch to the 7mm-300 Norma Mag loaded with the 177 grain Hammer Hunter. This is truly an excellent bullet for the longer ranges and more energy.
I just finished testing with the 143 Hammer Hunters. The rifle is a Tikka action with a Carbon Six barrel. The picture below has the details of the loads. These were the two most consistent loads that I found. Now I just need to check their performance on mule deer this fall.....
Wow great load and awesome group. have you tried the 131gr. hammer hunters
I tried some 160 sledge hammers a week ago. My gun is throated pretty short so they have to be seated DEEP. Shot 1 pretty good group at 100 and then tested them on a hot miserable day at 500. Was using H4831 and with them running right at 2800 was around 3 inches. Small test sample size so far for group and the single digit ES. Light hunting rifle
I question if I should go lighter, but grizzly will be on the menu if I take this gun
I would not go to light for Griz unless it is a longer shot and can get one in thin part of skull between eye and ear. I'm just hunting black tail so fast and flat is my works for me. Nice groups and great shooting for sure.
Youre going after a griz with a 280ai?
I am not sure which rifle yet, but i am fine with the option. Don't feel like carrying the 375 ruger after sheep!
280ai will be fine with heavy bullets
When i went griz hunting all the outfitters said dont even bring your 338 win mags its a 375 h&h minimum. And every one that got shot with a 375 immediately got shot a second time with one of those huge modified lever guns.
If your hunt is accidental encounters with bears, I might suggest a bigger rifle. If your hunt specifies bear as a target then you'll be glassing at longer distances and your .280AI will be fine.
Using the Hammer Hunter 177 grain:
In my set up, I'm able to get 3,354 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle which works out to be 2,000 ft/lbs at 450 yards. This is set with SAAMI throat and freebore so the bullet is fairly deep in the case. Throating the chamber out really screws up using the shorter/lighter bullets. Besides this works great as is.
If you have a guide, check with him. If you're self-guided, let your conscience and common sense guide you!
Enjoy the Hunt!
I have not. I still like to shoot heavy bullets for caliber. The 143's are the heaviest Hammer I can get for my twist rate.
Use a lighter bullet as long as you use solid copper bullets, as they require more velocity or resistance to expand to full effect as a general rule, besides the obvious issues with length and freebore as long as your rifles not specifically designed for them.
Shot hundreds of european deers, some moose, reindeer etc with copper bulltes, although i have'nt used the ones in question specifically, and that is the general experience. The retained energy and BC matters less then reliable expansion if you care about a quick and clean kill. There is of course a large difference in how much resistance a bullet will get from a hit depending on shot placement and the size of the animal as normal.
Great info. I just ordered my first 280AI today.
Great round, will do most anything. What did you order?
Brux barrel, Cerakote, REM700 LA blueprinted, Trigger Tech Premier, H-S Precision thumbhole stock, bolt bushed and different bolt knob. Rings will probably be TPS and an EGW base. The scope is still up in the air. The story on this build...About 10 years ago one of my nephews was wanting a new deer rifle. He wanted a 280 Remington and his dad, (my brother) and I pushed him into a 270 WSM. My brother passed away 4 years ago, more and more it has bugged me that we "pushed" my nephew into not getting the rifle he wanted. Mind you, he likes the 270 WSM, When the rifle is finished I am going to give it to him. This will include the whole setup including dies and cases. OP sorry for hijacking your post.
One thing to remember on a 280ai you need to make sure your cases, dies and reamer agree. Once nosler came out with their version it all became muddled. Redding changed their dies, reamers became combo units. All my 280ai stuff is original because my reamer was pre-nosler and so are my dies. One time i needed 11lbs of ammo so i took the easy route and got nosler formed ammo. It sucked looking at that useless box as i loaded 280rem brass and had to fireform it all. Just make sure which chamber you get- the original 280ai is hard to find these days but thats the reamer most gunsmiths have if theyve been around a while. Good thing is nosler makes very nice 280rem brass and redding will make you the old version die. Lapua 30-06 is good basic brass if the headstamp doesnt have to match
I'm using the Hammer bullets in three different calibers, the 6.5-284, the 270WSM and the 338 Federal. I've had excellent results as far as accuracy, I've got them touching the lands. The 139 grain bullets work well in the 6.5, the 145 in the 270WSM and I'm using the 225 grain bullets in my 338. I've got all three rifles sighted in it's now just a case of waiting for the hunting seasons to roll around. In October I hope to use the 225 grain bullets out of my 338 on Eland. The 145 grain bullets will be used for everything else.
No problem, all good stuff.Your nephew is a lucky man
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