TESTED: Winchester StaBALL HD Magnum Powder

Hodgdon released two new powders, StaBALL Match and StaBALL HD at SHOT Show 2023. We recently tested StaBALL Match. Today, we’re taking a closer look at StaBALL HD


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About Winchester StaBALL HD

I’ve been especially eager to get my hands on this magnum  powder, but it’s been worth the wait! Like the rest of the StaBALL line, StaBALL HD is a temperature-insensitive ball powder with a copper fouling reduction agent.

From Hodgdon

Winchester® StaBALL™ HD is a temperature-insensitive, double-base, BALL® Powder, stable in extreme-hot or -cold conditions. This slow-burning magnum powder provides optimal loading density in large capacity magnum cartridges appropriate for the burn speed, which is ideal for 6.5 PRC, 7MM Remington Mag, 300 PRC and many more. Typical of a BALL powder, precise metering contributes to improved velocity and lower standard deviations, ingredients that are paramount to match grade accuracy!   

This REACH-compliant, “environmentally green” propellant has copper fouling reducer additives, which contribute to shooting sessions without cleaning the bore. Velocity levels obtainable, depending on the cartridge, are 75-100fps greater than other propellants in its class. Thus, the StaBALL family provides Stability, Precision and Speed. 

Available in 1 lb. and 8 lb. canisters.  

What is especially exciting about both StaBALL HD and StaBALL Match is the line frees fans of popular stick powders from common powder charging problems. As a double-base spherical powder, StaBALL HD meters consistently from progressive auto-throw powder measures with the temperature insensitivity magnum ball powders typically lack.

StaBALL HD has a burn rate in the 6.5 PRC and 300 PRC range, falling in the realm of Hodgdon’s Retumbo and H1000.

Ideal cartridges include the 6.5 PRC, 7mm PRC, 7mm Rem Mag, 300 PRC and 300 Win Mag.


For our initial tests (no significant load development), we loaded 7mm PRC and 300 PRC. It’s important to note our test 300 PRC has a 26” barrel while the 7mm PRC has a 22” barrel (to facilitate running a suppressor). 

Guy Shooting the 7mm PRC with MagnetoSpeed Chronograph

71.1 grains of StaBALL HD under a 175 grain Hornady ELD-X yielded an average velocity of 2848 fps with a 13.8 fps standard deviation. 2800 fps out of a magnum with a 22” barrel is quite impressive. 

Kyle Shooting the 300 PRC with MagnetoSpeed Chronograph

We seated a 212 grain Hornady ELD-X bullet over 81.1 grains of StaBALL HD in the 300 PRC to get an average velocity of 2952 with an 8.6 fps standard deviation. This particular load would be both a fine long range and hunting bullet. 

Under the Microscope

StaBALL HD is a flattened ball powder. We compared it to Retumbo, Magnum and H1000. 

You can see in the photo that Magnum is considerably smaller than StaBALL HD and Retumbo and H1000 are similar in size. StaBALL HD measured approximately 50% larger in diameter than StaBALL Match and almost twice as thick. 


StaBALL HD Tested 6.5 PRC, 7mm PRC, and 300 PRC on bench

I was very impressed with the velocities we observed in initial testing and look forward to full load development, particularly for  6.5 PRC with a progressive. Currently this powder is in high demand and has limited load data, just because it’s so new. You can find load data for popular bullets at Hodgdon’s Reloading Data Center

Check out our test of StaBALL Match and stay tuned for our comparison of all the StaBALL powders

Get the Gear

Find Winchester StaBALL HD directly from Hodgdon and keep an eye on sites like Midsouth Shooters Supply

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Gavin Gear

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