Varget and imr 4064

Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by GSP7, Apr 8, 2010.

  1. GSP7


    Jun 7, 2007
    Comparing varget and imr 4064

    I read imr 4064 is long cut, not short, is this true?

    Is varget short cut stick?

    Does varget take up more space in a case(more density) in comparison to imr 4064 for a "equal" load?

    Any other charactoristics differences between these two powders that you can tell me about

    Ive never used either(yet), and plan to use for 308 winchester, 9.3x62 etc

  2. Rust


    Jan 8, 2005
    I've never paid any attention to the whole short cut/long cut thing since all of my competition loads were trickled back in the day and now are dropped by a Chargemaster (I love my Chargemaster).

    I have loaded 4064 in .308, it is an excellent powder. Any improvements over 4064 by any other powder in accuracy or velocity are marginal with mid weight bullets (155-175 gr).

    The fly in the ointment is that 4064 is more temperature sensitive than some of the modern powders. For instance a load right at the pressure limits 50 degrees F might be a little too hot at 90 degrees F. A more moderate load shouldn't present the same problem so it depends on the rifle, you may need hot weather and cold weather loads, or at more moderate loads a single load may serve your needs.

    I wish that the powder makers would be a little more forthcoming about temperature sensitivity. Years ago you could, if you knew the right people get pressure charts for some of the IMR powders. No longer the case unfortunately. I imagine that stopped because someone got a little overly enthusiastic looking for the ragged edge and found the other side...
  3. milboltnut


    May 15, 2006

    your concern would be if you have a powder dispenser... it throws easier.
  4. Mikem


    May 13, 2006
    Rust is right in his post.
    I have loaded both in my 308 bolt gun, and my only complaints with 4064 is, being a long grained hard power, its hard to run through my powder measure, compared to Varget.
    And Varget is more stable when it comes to temperature changes. Both shoot about the same, with 168g SMKs, both were well under .5" for 5 @ 100.
    And as for case fill, 44.5g of either powder doesent fill my Lapua 308 cases, so for me thats a non issue.
    So considering the temp thing, and the powder measure, I chose Varget, and have been using it only for several years. Varget is vary hard to beat, and I dont think 4064 can do it all considered, but its close.
  5. whiskey08


    Mar 23, 2010
    Im with mikem, not alot of difference in metering. 4064 is not finicky as far as accuracy, in my experience the hotter the load the better. The only thing I didnt like about it was the change in poi during a match because it was very temperature sensitive. varget isnt supposed to be, ill find out here in the next couple of weeks.
  6. GSP7


    Jun 7, 2007
    Thanks guys, Ive been useing R15 and want to switch to a single base powder, think ill go with Varget for now. I can use it in my 308 and 9.3x62
  7. Ram


    Aug 26, 2009
    Why are the advantages/disadvantages of a single based powder?
  8. Laurie


    Oct 27, 2009
    In practical terms - none.

    Many people believe that because 'double-base' powders incorporate an amount of nitro-glycerine in addition to the base cellulose, that they run 'hotter' and burn the barrel throat out quicker. Some early DB propellants such as the original 'Cordite' used in pre-WW1 .303 British service ammunition used a very high N-G content and additive technology was either in its infancy or non-existent at that time giving DB types a bad name. The original British Cordite mix was 56% NG, was very erosive, and burned Lee-Metford barrels out in around 1,000 rounds (this is also why the British changed to the deeper / sharper 'Enfield' rifling form). Modern DB powders use relatively small NG contents and incorporate means of keeping flame temperatures down.

    Having said that, many DB powders such as the Vihtavuori N500 series and Alliant Re17 are promoted on the basis of high-energy / performance in order to produce higher MVs within allowed pressures. You rarely if ever get anything for nothing, so if you're seeing an extra 100 fps from N540 or Re15 over VarGet or IMR-4064, you'll also see some reduction in barrel life.

    On the IMR-4064 v VarGet issue in .308W, I had an FN SPR that produced tiny groups with the IMR powder but never liked VarGet with any bullet weight (most unusual in my experience as this is usually an excellent performer in the cartridge). Unfortunately, my 4064 match load worked up in late winter / early spring disappointed in summer competitions even in the cool British summer. A retest showed that higher temperatures had raised MVs 30-40 fps and took it out of the barrel sweet spot. In the event I moved to heavier bullets and used Viht N550 double-base powder to get the long-range performance I needed from this 24" barrel rifle.

    Personally, I would never switch between Re15 and VarGet on the basis of the single versus double-base form issue alone. They're both excellent performers, but VarGet is less temperature affected, while Re15 meters much better in powder measures in my experience. VarGet burns more cleanly than Re15 in many applications - but these pros and cons are marginal.

    If GSP7 is worried about Re15's effects on barrel life, working a new VarGet or 4064 single-base load up will probably cause a greater reduction than any increase provided by using a new powder. If worried about barrel life, reduce the load, pressures and MVs to the minimum levels that give acceptable performance - that'll make a much bigger difference!

    York, England
  9. cfrazier77


    Dec 9, 2009
    I tried both Varget and 4064 in my 308 with a 30" barrel. 4064 gave better accuracy so I went if it. It is correct that temp change moves POI. Also, 4064 is much dirtier than Varget. I have to clean a lot more of carbon out of my barrel with 4064 compared to Varget, but I can deal with it for .2" smaller groups at 100 yards. One other thing though, I could shoot more rounds with Varget before accuracy fell off than 4064 due to it being cleaner.
  10. Xedefoplop

    Xedefoplop Guest

    It’s really great posts.
  11. K22


    Jan 24, 2011
    I've used both in my 308 Rem and both worked quite well. Another good choice is IMR / H 4895. I don't think you can go wrong with any of these in the 308. My experience has been with 150 to 165 grain bullets.

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