Lusting After A .284 Winchester
Q: I have a Turkish Mauser action in tip-top condition and intend using it to have a custom rifle built in .284 Winchester. I remember you had a .284 on a BSA Royal action that was originally made in a mid-length for the 7x57. It was long throated which allowed you to seat your bullets out to get higher velocities. I already have a laminated stock for this rifle from Stockeys in the U.S.A. and a 600mm Walther barrel. I plan to mount a Leupold 2.5-8x scope. What can you tell me about the .284? Can you suggest three good loads for my long-throated rifle?
A: The .284 is a fat-bodied, sharp-shouldered case with the capacity of a .30-06 but an overall length to match short-action rifles. Introduced in 1963, it was chambered for Winchester's Model 88 lever-action rifle and Model 100 semi-auto rifle which was the first 284 I owned. The case has a rebated rim, and while the rim is .30-06 diameter (.473"), the body of the case is larger - (about .500"). The fat body, short neck and sharp shoulder account for the sizable capacity. It's a great design that offers .280 Rem. performance from a short action rifle. Capacitywise, the .284 holds 66gn of water compared with 55gn for the 7mm-08. This is a a 17 percent advantage which translates into at least a 150fps advantage for the .284 at top velocity levels! More if the chamber is long-throated. Winchester gave the .284 a short neck to increase powder capacity, and if you long throat your rifle you can seat bullets level with the base of the neck you'll get more case capacity than you would with the standard length throat. With what I consider the ideal powder for the .284 - AR2209 - a bullet will simply compress the granules. My pet loads with AR2209 are: Speer 130gn BT 58gn 3120fps; 140gn Nosler Partition 57gn 3065fps; 145gn Speer and 56gn for 3000fps. An excellent load for big deer was the 140gn Barnes-X and 62gn of WMR for 3000fps. You may be able to work up some good loads with Winchester 780 which superseded WMR.