At SHOT Show 2023, Hodgdon’s Aaron Oelger took a few minutes to talk to us about new StaBALL powders — StaBALL Match and StaBALL HD.
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This year the StaBALL powder family is growing!
We’ve done considerable testing and load development with StaBALL 6.5. It’s temperature insensitive and as a ball powder, meters well out of a progressive.
Oelger explained that when StaBALL 6.5 was released three years ago, the intent was for it to grow into a full family. New this year to the StaBALL family are two new burn rates.
StaBALL Match is designed for heavy bullets in .223 and .308 and comparable to Hodgdon Varget. StaBALL HD is intended for magnum cartridges like 7mm PRC. It is comparable to Hodgdon Retumbo, which has been hard to find.
Ball powders traditionally meter more consistently than stick powders. Oelger explained that these new StaBALL powders came from a desire for a temperature-stable, ball powder.
With Varget and Retumbo still hard to find on shelves, StaBALL Match and StaBALL HD are exciting alternatives for reloaders. Oelger says there will be plenty of both powders available.
We’ve personally had great success with Varget burn speeds with the 6mm GT and 6mm Dasher. On the magnum side, we just built two 7mm PRC rifles, a Bergara and Freedom Rifle build.
I’m especially excited about these new StaBALL powders and how they will fit into our future tests and load development, particularly in comparing accuracy at 1000 yards between single-stage and progressive press loading.
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