March 28th, 2011

New .308 Win (175gr) Tactical Ammo from Applied Ballistics

Applied Balllistics LLC, run by Bryan Litz, has just released new .308 Winchester Tactical Ammunition. This new ammo employs a brand-new 175gr “Tactical OTM” bullet from Berger Bullets. This new projectile is unique in that it was designed to “fly right” even at transonic and subsonic speeds. The new 175gr bullets are loaded to magazine length (2.800″) in new Lapua brass, so the ammo will fit all popular detachable box magazines in tactical bolt guns and gas guns. Bryan recommends a 1:13″ (or faster) twist barrel.

Applied Ballistics Tactical Ammo

New Tactical Ammo Has Individually-Weighed Charges and Low ES
Unlike most “factory ammo”, Bryan’s new Tactical Ammo features individually weighed charges. That’s right — the charge for each and every round is weighed before it goes in the case. As a result, the new ammo typically delivers Muzzle Velocity (MV) Standard Deviation (SD) under 10 FPS (for 10 shots). That’s a low number, on a par with quality handloads. Bryan has shot this ammo at 1000 yards through a LaRue OBR AR10-type rifle. The ammo shot under one MOA at 1000 yards. Another benefit of the weighed charges is that this allows the use of high-quality extruded (stick) powders. The stick powders are known to deliver great accuracy while being consistent through a wide temperature range.

Berger’s NEW .30 Caliber 175gr Tactical OTM Bullet
This bullet was designed by Berger Ballistician Bryan Litz specifically to optimize performance of the M118LR class of ammunition. The design objectives were to maximize BC while staying within the 2.800” COAL for magazine feeding, and the requirement for the bullet to remain stable through transonic speeds. All of these design objectives were achieved, according to Bryan. The bullet has a length-tolerant tangent ogive shape, so it is less sensitive to seating depth than secant-ogive bullets.

The BC of this bullet is 7% higher than the 175 grain Sierra MatchKing currently used in most M118LR ammunition, and 2% higher than the Hornady 178 grain option. The average G1 BC of the Berger 175gr Tactical bullet is 0.510 from 3000 to 1500 fps. The G7 BC is 0.259, and is a more accurate representation of this bullets performance over a wide range of speeds. (CLICK HERE to read about G1 vs. G7 BC.)

Applied Ballistics Tactical Ammo

The Berger 175gr Tactical OTM bullet requires a minimum twist rate of 1:13″ to be stable from the muzzle. Transonic stability was verified from a 20″-barreled LaRue OBR with a 1:11.25″ twist.

Early Tests Show Bullet Shoots GreatReport by Robert Whitley
Robert Whitley got a box of early-run 175gr Tactical bullets. He says they shoot great in his own handloads: “I just received some of the new Berger .30 cal 175gr Tactical OTM (Open Tip Match) bullets. Wow — what great bullets for the .308 Winchester! I did some range testing and these things really shoot! As you can see below, I had a 5-shot group around 0.2″ and, then, shooting prone, I produced a 20-shot group that just tore out the X-Ring.” (NOTE: these targets were shot with Robert’s handloads, not the Applied Ballistics pre-loaded ammo.)

Applied Ballistics Tactical Ammo

While the words “Open Tip Match” might lead one to believe it has a large open tip, this BTHP bullet actually has a small meplat. Robert suspects that, for this bullet’s potential tactical and military applications, it was felt the words “hollow point” should be avoided in favor of “open tip”.

Bullets Are Positioned Optimally When Loaded at 2.800″ Mag Length
These bullets were also made to be loaded at magazine feeding length in the .308 Winchester (2.800″ OAL). Robert reports: “When loaded at a 2.800″ OAL length, the bullets sit perfectly in the neck of the .308 Winchester, with the full bearing surface of the bullet up in the neck of the case, and the junction of the boat tail and bearing surface of the bullet just forward of the junction of the neck and shoulder of the case.”

If you are going to shoot these bullets and expect them to be supersonic the whole way, a 1:13″ or faster twist is recommended, and if you are going to run them at velocities where they might be subsonic/transonic, Bryan confirmed they’ll work in 1:11.25″ twist barrels. Robert notes that his company, AR-X Enterprises, carries 1:11.25″ twist Bartlein .30 Cal barrels as a regularly-stocked item in both the M24/M40/Rem Tactical contour and the Remington Heavy Varmint/Sendero contour.

Whitley concludes “This is a great offering by Berger Bullets”. While the bullets can be purchased through Berger or Berger’s dealers, the new Applied Ballistics’ loaded ammo should be ordered through Bryan’s website. The price is $40 (plus shipping) for 20 rounds.

CLICK HERE to order through the Applied Ballistics secure shopping cart.

Disclosure: Applied Ballistics LLC advertises Bryan Litz’s Ballisitics Book on this site.

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