.404 Jeffery / 400grs A-Frame Reload data

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by jjrckd, Mar 18, 2018.

  1. jjrckd

    jjrckd AH Member

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    Hi,

    I was wondering if anyone had some reload data for .404 Jeffery and 400grs Swift A-frame bullets which they were willing to share? Preferably with Norma or Vihtavouri powders.

    Thanks!
     

  2. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    @jjrckd

    I have the newest version of the Swift manual. I have attached the load data for the 404 Jeffery and the 400 grain Swift A-frame to this reply. The manual lists both Vhitavouri and Norma powders. In my experience, the Swift data has been on the anemic side, but having said that, I would start with what they recommend and go from there. Again, in my experience, I have been able to push the max loads by 1-2 grains with no adverse effects, but please be careful with that statement. What has worked in my rifle, may not work in yours. Good luck!
     

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  3. jjrckd

    jjrckd AH Member

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    @sandman0921

    Thank you! This was exactly what I was after, greatly appreciated!!
     
    ve7poi and sandman0921 like this.

  4. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    84.0 Gr. of H4350. Should get you 2300FPS. There was a post similar to this a couple of months ago. It seems to me that Norma's MRP-2 is what they recommend. The load using 84 Gr. of H4350 has proven to be very accurate in a number of different 404(s) around the world.
     

  5. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    For those shooting North Fork bullets out of their 404 Jeffery, the technicians at North Fork sent me the following data. This data was for their SS bonded (soft) bullets. For the same weight FPS/CPS bullets, the recommendation was for 1 grain less powder than the final charge weight in the SS bullets. Supposedly, it will get you very close to the same POI between the softs and solids. I am currently in the process of verifying this fact but so far it looks promising.....
     

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  6. jjrckd

    jjrckd AH Member

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    Thank you all, this is real useful information! Out of curiosity, would anyone happen to know for what kind of climate these loads have been developed? Is it for the average American/European fairly cool climate or are these true hot climate African loads?
     

  7. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I've not read anything about H4350 being temperature sensitive. Another thing since Africa is on the opposite side of the equator It's seasons are reversed. So depending where and what time of year you are hunting the excessive heat you are concerned about may not be a factor. Apart from that, the H 4350 load is below the maximum charge so even in very hot climates I doubt there would be much detrimental effect.
     

  8. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    @jjrckd

    I would venture a guess that these loads from the various reloading manuals are tested at the manufacturers testing facilities, or conversely at an independent testing facility if they don't have one, here in North America. As to the conditions, I would suspect, but I don't know, that they'd be pretty standardized and probably not equivalent to what field conditions would be in Africa per say. Maybe someone on here that has better knowledge of this can chime in....

    When I develop a load for my big bores / Africa rifles, I try and do some shooting during the late spring and summer months to ascertain if there are any indications of high pressure when the rounds have had a chance to bake in the hot and humid environment of southern TN during that time of year. Especially when I'm shooting a max book load, or higher than max load, it makes me feel more comfortable doing this. I would think the mid to high 90 deg Fahrenheit and 70-80% humidity days of late July and August here in the southern US would probably mimic the field conditions experienced in Africa pretty well, depending on the time of year and where you are....

    Conversely, for my cartridges and rifles I use in the cold and wet conditions of Canada and Alaska for sheep, moose, bears, etc., I try and shoot them in the late fall and winter months to gauge how the cold might effect their performance. Of course, one cannot factor in the altitude, but again trying to get to as close to field conditions as possible....
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2018

  9. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    Very true......
     

  10. jjrckd

    jjrckd AH Member

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    Well, living on the West coast of Norway we hardly never (if even ever) experience weather which even comes close to the coldest winter day in Africa;) If we make it to the mid 70's on a hot summer day we all go ecstatic! My only real option for testing loads in temperatures close to what one can expect in Africa is to keep the cartridges in your pocket until you're ready to fire. Not exactly optimal..

    The availability of powders is somewhat limited in the area where I live. Norma and Vihtavouri is no problem but for anything else I need to go to Eastern Norway. Due to national regulations for transportation of dangerous goods the shipping cost of powders often exceeds the cost of the powder itself. I will pick up some H4350 the next time I have a chance though.

    I'm currently in the finishing phase of testing 400grs Hornady DGS. Restults so far is that VV N160 gives the best results. That said, I have been playing around with Quickload and it looks like VV N550 could be worth testing. Higher velocities at lower pressures. I guess the big question will be if it'll give the same low S-D's and the tight groupings as the N160 does.

    I'll start experimenting with the Swift A-Frame sometime early April.
     

  11. GuttormG

    GuttormG AH Enthusiast

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    Africa is kind of a big place, check the location you are going to on one of the online weathersites, most of then will also give you historical data.

    As for publushed loads from bullet and powder manufactureres; I would be very suprised if they are not developed at an ambient temperature of 20°C.
     

  12. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    @jjrckd

    Well I'd say so.......

    I'm certainly not implying one needs to be as anal retentive as I admittedly am when it comes to reloading, but certainly I have noticed pressure signs before in hot weather with some of my rounds that were fine in cooler weather. Most noticeably in a custom 338 Winchester Magnum I own. That rifle is primarily an elk, moose, caribou, etc. rifle and utilized in much cooler and damper weather, probably very similar to your climate. The rounds were initially loaded hot, and during the summer months when shooting it, I noticed flattened primers and a slightly sticky bolt handle when lifting the bolt handle on ejection. This load was developed by the rifle builder. I chose to back off by o.5 grains of powder, and have not noticed the phenomena again.

    I think at the distances the 404 Jeffery would be utilized at (150 m and in), there would be very little difference in point of impact between your climate and in Africa. More importantly, is not to "hot-rod" the round and risk sticking a bolt when using the rifle for dangerous game. It's just not necessary to get great performance from this old stalwart. As you probably know, originally W.J. Jeffery and Co. wanted a round that would function in a bolt action rifle, and also duplicate the performance of the venerable rimmed double rifle cartridge 450/400 3 inch. The original velocities were targeted for around 2125 fps if I recall correctly. The 400 grain bullet at that velocity was very effective at its intended purpose, so much so that the game departments of Northern and Southern Rhodesia, Kenya, and Tanzania supplied their game wardens with Vickers rifles chambered in this cartridge. Later on, the Jeffery Co. realized that the velocity could easily be increased, and now we have modern loads that toss a 400 grain pill at around 2400 fps which effectively duplicates the performance of the 416 Rigby and 416 Remington. The rifle was apparently a great sheep rifle as well (see the Chadwick ram).....:sneaky:

    I say all of this to say that Norma and Vihtavouri powders should certainly get you to an acceptable velocity for a 400 grain Swift A-frame. Find a load that shoots accurately and gets you in the 2200-2300 fps range and you will have a rifle that will dispatch any animal on earth...and do it with style. Most importantly, before you take the handloads to hunt buff, lion, or elephant ensure those cartridges will all cycle smoothly from magazine to chamber, as well as eject from the rifle as well. Test every single one of them in the rifle you intend to bring.

    Good luck with your load development and make sure to post the results. Some of us rifle and handloading cranks love to see the results....
     
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