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Thread: Reloading the 257 roberts



  1. #11
    Wrangler
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    Kimber 84M 257 Bob.JPG

    Here is a picture of the Kimber 257. The flash is making the stock look more shinny than it is. It is a natural oil finish with deep cut checkering.
    Last edited by quickfire; 12-20-2011 at 05:46 PM. Reason: trying to make photo bigger, no luck

  2. #12
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    Yeah, there's a lot of us "Bob" fans around here.
    Like .35Rem stated, the 'Bob is better with the slower burning powders. I started my 'bob loading in 1983 and with some original lot#'s of H4831. With newer lot#'s, I'm seeing over 3,000fps and near 3,100fps with a modest loading at 48.5gr. You can go heavier, but I've seen fabulous accuracy at this loading. On a lark, with a rifle I was having accuracy issues with (Ruger M77MkII), I tried an oldy but goody load of 38.0gr of IMR3031. This got 3,050fps from the Ruger and was the single most accurate load from it and only one to give MOA for 5-shots.


    FWIW use bullet without a cannulure. I've gotten best accuracy from Sierra and Speer bullets due to lack of cannulure. Nosler's are good but are un-neccessary for most 'Bob applications. The Hornady "Interloks" are good but often aren't as accurate. The "on-game" performace of the Hornady's has been as good as the Noslers in my experience. Hence, I typically load up on the "blems" that are offered. My current "stash" of .257" bullets are heavy in 100 and 117gr Hornady's. I don't expect sub-moa from the bullets, (though sometimes I pleasantly suprised) but on-game performance leaves nothing wanting.

    My favorite load with 115gr loads is 45.0gr of IMR4831. I stumbled across this load working up a load in the above mentioned Ruger for the Berger 115gr VLD. This load gets at or near 3,000fps from the 115gr bullets. With a 117gr Flat-base bullet and all 120's, I drop this to 44.0gr. This is a "sleeper" powder in the 'Bob. Not a lot of print given it, but it has pleased me with every use. Reloader22 hasn't been as good in my experience. Perhaps a tad "slow". H4350 is fast, but in my experience not as accurate as the IMR4350, which is my favorite with 100gr bullets. (45.0gr of course! Gives 2,970fps from my 22" bbl's).

    I've found the extruded powders to be more accurate, with IMR4350 a favorite, but don't discount H414 or H380. My Custom M98 Mauser has an E.R.Shaw barrel on it that when new shot these really well. It still does, but has some pitting in the mid-bore area and quickly fouls now. But, with a clean barrel and loads it likes is still sub-moa. For shooting under 300yds, use a flat-base bullet for superior accuracy.
    I haven't had time to try it yet in the 'Bob, but from what I'm seeing in the 7mm08 and .30/06; Reloader17 may be the next great thing in the 'Bob....
    Due to aquiring a .22-250 in '06, I now no longer expect to shoot bullets lighter than 100gr from the 'Bob. That, and a Remington Mod-7 in .260Rem is my latest "darling" and will be for some time to come.
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  3. #13
    High Priest of the Powder Hoarders Contributing Member
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    I thought I'd bump this thread with some updated info, I'm still playing with loads in my Ruger 77 MkII, and trying a powder I've had good luck with in the .308, namely Alliant's fairly-new 2000-MR, a medium rifle powder. Since I'm shooting a rifle that is capable of handling higher-than-traditional pressures (for the 257) I'm moving into Plus-P territory. Data's still pretty scarce, but it's out there id you look hard enough.

    With 100-grain bullets, 40 grains of 2000-MR gets me an average of 2862 fps. 41 grains bumps it up to 2926, with better accuracy in this rifle. My top load of 42 grains gets the average up to 2937, and a hint of high pressure, so I think I'll leave it at 41 grains, a gain of 9 fps doesn't mean much, and tells me the load is about maxed out.

    I just reloaded the brass with WW760 (same as H-414, IIRC) and Sierra 90 and 100 grain boat-tails, we'll see if the gun likes that any better. If not, one of the 4831's is up next, since I have a lot of 117/120 grain bullets to play with. I want to isolate a load for this rifle, and load up a ton of it, and stop fiddling with it!
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    If a reasonably long barrel of 22 or 24 inches is present I thought and think that a 100 grain ought to wind up in the 3200 fps vicinity. And of course if an appropriate powder is used.

  5. #15
    High Priest of the Powder Hoarders Contributing Member
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    John, what do you suggest as an optimal powder for the 100-grainers? I've got a lot of medium burners, but not many slower varieties. IMR-4831 is likely the slowest powder I have.......but I'm never averse to buying something new!
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    Friend Dave and I have had good luck with Reloder 19, which approximates 4350/4831. Given that this is amply slow for 100 grain bullets, and given that the 6mm Remington achieves this 3100/3200 speed with a smaller bore, it seems sensible that the Roberts can do it too. Alliant's more recent 2011 data lists 3163 fps loads for the 6mm, while the Roberts reaches a rather disappointing 2900 to 3050 fps.

    That's not right.

    I've always thought even the +P Roberts stuff is loaded lower than it can be. And it is.

    Alliant goes to about 44.7 grains of RL 19 with a 100 grain bullet just recently, which is ridiculously low, and I won't be shy to mention we're noticeably above that, as in 50 grains even. RP brass was used, and WW primers. Our average was about 3180 fps. I don't know that there's anything magic about the powder; we're just emulating 6mm/270 pressure levels. Older Alliant data went to 47.2 grains with a 100 Speer spitzer and claimed 3100 from a 24 inch barrel. At 47.9 K "copper units."

    At the same time the 264 Win was loaded to about 52 CU's while the 270 Weatherby went to 55.

    We also liked 45.0 IMR 4064 and the 75 VMax for about a 3540 fps average, which is reasonable from my 22" Mk II (bet it looks just like yours); I have a Burris 3-9 Fullfield II on it. Love the caliber, has it all for hunting around here. Great coyote gun as hides around here aren't worth much and I can hit them a ways away if I'm shooting straight.

    47.5 to 48.0 RL22 and the 120 Speer flatbase got around 2900 which seems like a good maximum and a definite "do not exceed." A half grain less was about 50 fps slower. 44.5 to 45.0 IMR4831 was similar in velocity and is top end IMO. 48.0 H4831SC got 2830 to 2840 which surprised me as I expected it to do about the same as RL 22 in identical charges.

    What's interesting is where these charges lie in previous data. Alliant used to list 46.5 RL22 and the 120 Sierra HPBT as producing 48 copper units. Hmm? Again, my suggested loads are more than are listed, but not much, over Alliant's previous data, and case life has been good.

    Reason says 2900 is a good place to quit with a 120 in a 22 inch barrel, and we do. Reason also says that 100's at 3150 to 3200 are reasonable, and that's where we go. 75's get 3500 with the right powder. And simple observation says that a lot of the recent Plus P Roberts data still isn't very plus P. In fact some of it is going backward.

    And the rifle shoots cast bullets like gangbusters, too. If I could keep one or two rifles and had to lose the rest this one would be on my short list.

    Been also shooting some 110's lately.
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  7. #17
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    Thumbs up

    Since I've started started reloading a few years ago I've become a fan of the .243 for general shooting and whitetail hunting...I've also been considering for some time to purchasing a quarter-bore rifle to add to my arsenal...I haven't quite decided between a .257 Robert or a .25-06...I always enjoy reading the comments about other's experience regarding what powder works best with a certain grain of bullet. Interesting thread!
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    PWB - my Dad vacilated over getting a 25-06, to go with his 257Roberts, or to have one of his 257 Roberts opened up to an Ackley. Once I got the chronograph and he could see what he was getting with his Roberts (I read where only Southerners call it "the Bob", LOL), he no longer talked about either one being done. My sister had a 25-06 as well as one of my girl friends had one. In all fairness, the 25-06 is a tad superior, but on the surface, it just appears to be a way to burn more powder to get to the same place. They all have a certain cult following, so I'm guessing pick your cult and fire away! LOL! Not a bad choice out there.

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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sweetwater View Post
    PWB - my Dad vacilated over getting a 25-06, to go with his 257Roberts, or to have one of his 257 Roberts opened up to an Ackley. Once I got the chronograph and he could see what he was getting with his Roberts (I read where only Southerners call it "the Bob", LOL), he no longer talked about either one being done. My sister had a 25-06 as well as one of my girl friends had one. In all fairness, the 25-06 is a tad superior, but on the surface, it just appears to be a way to burn more powder to get to the same place. They all have a certain cult following, so I'm guessing pick your cult and fire away! LOL! Not a bad choice out there.

    Jeff
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    I have a Ruger MK II .30-06 that I may have re-chambered/re-barreled to .25-06...but I am still leaning towards a .257 Bob....I read where the .25-06 favors a 24 inch barrel and wonder if that applies to the .257 Bob? Either way, one of them is on my short list of rifles to have!
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  10. #20
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    The 22 inch .257 gets quite adequate velocities, and I'd regard that as more "appropriate" than a 22 inch .270 or 25-06, and I say that although I know it's a given that more 22 inch 270's are sold than any other type (but I bet we would all rather have 24 inch 270's if somebody offered them in production guns....that's why I've always believed that a 22 inch 270 is optimized with a 150 grain bullet, not a 130).

    But I doubt if you went to 24 that the extra 2 inches would snag on every tree limb within 100 yards. Buy what you want and be happy, but don't worry about 24 if you can only get a 22. Or vice versa.

    My nominee for "closest to mild loads but good velocity" with a 120 grain bullet is so far IMR 4831. IMR listed/lists (now Hodgdon) 44.0 grains IMR 4831, and I was pleased to find it got greater velocity from a 22 inch barrel than they listed from a 24. Since it was stated as 45,000 CUP (which implied a tiny bit of increase was possible) I went one grain over that and hit 2900 fps. Nice. This should be most reassuring to those who like to stick as close as possible to printed data.

    Sometimes "shopping around" does pay dividends.


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