cactusArizona  Rifleshootingcactus
Ammo for Competition
with the
AR-15 Service Rifle

  1. Don't mess with 55gr FMJ bullets. (unless they shoot great in your rifle, and then only at 200 yds) If you are a beginner and have a case, use it up as you learn the match and course of fire. Don't bother to reload them to save a few pennies if you are shooting matches, as much work as reloading is, just use real bullets. But at the cost of ammo now, it is worthwhile to load 55's for plinking.
  2. Don't mess with 62gr SS109 style bullets at all. They cost more than match ammo/bullets and offer no real advantage over 55's and none over match bullets, but likely are LESS accurate than even bulk 55gr FMJ as the inner 2 piece core adds an extra way it can be unbalanced.
  3. Hornady, Federal and Black Hills ammo are available.
  4. Use only MATCH bullets. If you don't reload, you can often get Black Hills remanufactured ammo at a reasonable cost. If you DO reload, it is so much work, just use real bullets for real shooting!
  5. Here's what we use for 200 and 300 yds loaded 2.250" oal for magazine feeding.
    1. 68 Hornady (well, almost no one uses these)
    2. 69 Sierra (not so popular anymore)
    3. 75 Hornady BTHP (very popular)
    4. 77 Sierra (very popular)
  6. Here's what we use for 500/600/1000 yds, loaded to just off the lands for single round loading, , you need to check the length. 2.420" in a new match barrel to 2.550" oal in a colt military barrel. You can check the length by loading dummies to different lengths until it sticks in the lands.
    1. 75 Hornady AMAX (fragile plastic tips) (they now have an 80 gr AMAX)
    2. 80 Sierra
  7. Here's what we use for powder:
    1. Varget
    2. RL-15
    3. H4895
    4. IMR-4895 (does not meter as well as H4895, but often available surplus)
    5. Vihtavouri or others (I cannot offer advice but others might)
    6. don't use Ball powder with heavy bullets, it meters great but just is not accurate for most of us.
  8. If you reload, check the data books, start with a minimum load and work up. usual disclaimers apply.
  9. Brass:
    1. Federal is so soft and loaded hot from the factory that it can be reliable on the second loading and have expanded primer pocket and drop or blow primers on subsequent loadings, use with caution.
    2. Winchester is great and available, buy 1000 and reload it 5 times. It will last as long as the barrel.
    3. There used to be places (Sharch, RVOW) that had deals on fully prepped/primed once-fired LC.
    4. Trim to 1.750"
    5. I don't think brand of brass matters much if you are well below max loads.
    6. Try to use the same batch of brass for each lot of ammo, especially at 500/600, don't mix headstamps (probably doesn't matter for offhand tho)
  10. Primers:
    1. CCI BR-4 for slow fire
    2. Fed 205M also works
    3. Rem 7-1/2 was used in prior years by the team
    4. WSR is OK but there are reports of piercing, especially with the new unplated ones
    5. Russian primers had been imported by a HP shooter here in AZ. They did fine. Don't know if they are still available.
    6. Other CCI primers or Rem primers are just as good.
    7. I really don't think it matters much, but you might be careful before changing primers if u use max loads.
  11. Stay below max loads. it might be above max on a hot day or borrowed gun.
  12. Some guys adjust the load (charge or oal for slow fire) to keep constant velocity during the life of the barrel.
  13. Mark your brass. But if you shoot next to me, don't mark it with a red band around the body of the case.
  14. You CAN load accurate ammo on a Dillon 650.
  15. You CAN load enough ammo for every match you shoot on a Rock Chucker.
  16. The Gracey (with bob jones blade) and Dillon Trimmers are the most popular.
  17. You DON'T need to weigh brass and powder charges, but you can if u want to for slow fire at 600 yds.

Last modified by:  Bill Poole (18-Mar-09, 22-Jan-07, 26-May-03). (c)
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