Within the pass couple of years since the ratification of the 300 Blackout by SAAMI in 2011 it has continued to gain and enormous amount of popularity. Initially I did not see all the rage behind the new cartridge until firing 220gr subsonic rounds down range through Darrell’s Micro 7 with Yankee Hill Suppressor, the thump on the back stop down range was louder than the initial firing of the weapon.
But I digress and need to stay on track, though stay tuned for the range review of the Remington Micro 7.
Right away I started collecting everything needed to start reloading for this cartridge, yes that is correct I actually had my reloading gear before actually having a firearm chambered in 300 Blackout, the firearm piece could be figured out later (Hi I am Mr. Revolverguy and yes I am a reload aholic and may need an intervention). I was not totally new to this cartridge I knew it was introduced by AAC and was based on the 300 Whisper. AAC created this cartridge with a few things in mind, create a reliable 30 caliber solution while utilizing the existing M4 carbine platform with only the need to change the barrel. This idea would create a number of advantages over the 5.56 and 223 Remington, greater barrier penetration, create ballistics very similar to that of the 7.62x39mm round fired by the AK47, along with easily being suppressed creates a deadly combo.
Here as of late I have been spending a lot of time at my reloading bench with my old favorite companion Mr. 20 year old Rock Chucker. Reloading is a stress reliever for me and my reloading bench is a place to go after one of those tough days at work. Like most when I started out reloading I started out on this single stage press which has seen tens of thousands of rounds throughout the years. And like most reloaders as technology have advanced I have moved forward with it owning a Lee Classic 4 hole turret press and a Hornady Progressive LnL press. Over the years I have found my Rock Chucker sitting lonely mounted to the end of the bench unless I am in need of rifle rounds. I still prefer to load all of my rifle ammunition on the single stage. Having tried rifle on a progressive the flow of the process does not feel safe to me, cleaning, full length sizing, stopping, trimming brass, stopping, priming brass, stopping ok you get the point I think. Now before you condemn me to eternal damnation, there are many reloaders out there whom have mastered reloading rifle on a progressive press and feel totally comfortable with it. I guess it is hard to teach old dogs new tricks as I have the same process for the last 20 years of reloading rifle, processing batches at a minimal of 200 rounds at a time and it is this process I am most comfortable with. I also know that the Rock Chucker gives me more consistent tolerances having measured cartridge overall length utilizing the same exact dies just two different presses but I digress.
Though I enjoy reloading time is very precious as any session could be interrupted by a call from work or any other life moment. Though I have a 20 year old process thats tried and true I have made a few changes over the years to become more efficient, in a sense thats part of the excitement and joy of moving to a turret or progressive press. Spending so much time reloading pistol ammo as of late and really enjoying it I found myself at the bench looking down at the Rock Chucker asking myself what can I do to make rifle reloading more efficient and enjoyable. That’s when it hit me, one of the things I love about my Hornady LnL is the ability to quickly change calibers, it is also the reason I purchased the Lee Classic 4 hole Turret press for low production ammunition runs. Enter the idea of possibly modding the Rock Chucker for easy caliber changes and I knew Hornady made a kit for this very task, the Hornady Lock and Load Conversion Kit. Like any mods I take on I make sure to have the right tools first to complete the job and for this one I was going to need to acquire a 1 1/2in socket as I did not have anything that large in my toolbox.
How fitting that on this day of the 238th birthday of the United States Marine Corps that Miami Valley Sportmans Club would memorialize the 100 yard rifle range, Dedicated to the Memory of Paul (Rocky) W. Zanowick II KIA in operation enduring freedom in 2011.
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven’s scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.
This truly left a lump in my throat today.