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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Originally posted by Mag:

Topic: Reloading for and shooting the Type-99
Posted: 01 Sep 2007 at 10:40pm
I have test fired about 250 different T-99's to date with about 50 to 100 rounds per rifle. I have fired some of my favorite T-99 rifles in military rifle matches. I have also scored about 5000 targets fired in military rifle matches by others over the last 12 or so years . Here is a quick run down on what to look for and what works. First there is no such thing a "the best load" for a T-99, they seem to be much more picky rifle to rifle than any other type I have tested. There are a few reasons for this. They where made by several different makers, that seemed to do it " there way", to the point all parts do not swap rifle to rifle, and the barrels act different. Also the chromed and non-chromed bores act different. And last as the rifles became more and more "last ditch " the bedding and such was not as good. I grade my accuracy by an average of 5-shot groups at 100 yards, not the best 5 of a herd, a one off good group, or at 50 yards. The rifles average group size means you can feel sure the rifle will shoot a group that size on demand. If you are getting a real 2.5 to 3 ich 5-shot 100 yard group , you are doing JUSY fine. First, cases from best to not as good: 1.. 7.7 Norma - fit well except a little small at the head, long lasting, the best for accuracy, but pricey. 2.. 8x57mm Rem, Win or S&B - reformed in a 7.7x58 die ,, a little small at the head with the US, a little short in the neck with all [ but the will grow longer as fired ] . 3.. 7.7mm Graff - poor quaility control, varying neck tension, some die quick, some last a while, head size and lenght good 4.. 30/06 reformed - Poor neck tension as the neck is thicker 1/2 way down since it was made from the shoulder of the case, it will even out under repeated firing, till it splits there . Head small but lenght good.

The T-99 is hard to shoot well group to group because of the large dia hole in the rear peep sight,, you will get larger than nornal groups and flyers. With a scope those problems dissappear, and the T-99 will shoot right at 1.5 inch groups,, as good as any other military rifle.
Slug your bore. The larger the bore [ land and groove ] the less a rifle will like boatail bullets. A low velocity load with a fast powder or a medium velocity load with a slow powder will tent to do better in larger bores. A good place to start is the Hornady .312 dia 150 sp bullet with 40.0 of I-3031 with the bullet seated just to the bottom of the crimp groove. This will get you about 2400 fps, depends on your bore size.
The above will also work with 43.0 of I-4064 , 41.5 of I-4895 and 40.5 of Benchmark. Chrome bores tend to shoot better with hotter loads, so you can up any of the above loads by 10 % if you need to. With tighter bores the 174 matchking can be good. With it start at 41.0 of I-3031 for 2450 fps,, 42.5 of I-4064 or 45.0 of I-4350 . OCL of 3.048 for the 174 mk . The Sierra 180 sp can be good in some rifles, 45.7 of I-4350 for 2200 fps. A strange load that has done great in some rifles is the Hornady 123 grain SKS bullet, 48.6 of I-4064 for 2850 fps, seat base crimp groove.
Some lighter loads to check fire a new rifle with , to play it safe with a real late rifle, or not to put any strain on a really nice one: The H-150 sp with 20.0 of SR-4759 or 21.5 of XMP-5744, a Magnum primer, hand weight the powder, best in formed cases, for about 1700 fps. You can go up by 10 % to "tune" for your rifle. Same for the H-123 sp bullet. These light loads have made some ratty looking old last ditchers shoot really well. One of these loads should work in your rifle and shoot close to point of aim, and poa is important to good shooting with a T-99 as the sights are all over and you do need to use center hold with that big peep.
Also you will almost always show some swell above the case head, some rifle worse than others. You can just neck size your fired cases in a 7.62x54r die to keep from over working that spot on the case. You can use pulled bullets from 303 brit or 7.62x54r , but the poor bullets will double the group size, it has in all of my rifles [ but that may be ok for the shooting you want to do at the time ] . mag
 
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