Vihtavuori N530 [Archive] - Home of the 6.8 SPC -

: Vihtavuori N530

08-22-2009, 10:54 PM
Anyone tried this yet in the 6.8? There was an article a while back in 6mmbr on its use in the Grendel

The Vihtavuori 500 line of powders are double based with a shot of nitro celluose for good measure.

08-22-2009, 11:15 PM
I have used various VV powders for years but not in the 6.8 ........yet.

VV makes great powders...clean burning and very consistent....that's why many competitive shooters use it.

compare burn rates and look for info here:

I'll probably look into using VV in the 6.8 sooner or later.

08-23-2009, 12:50 AM
Anyone tried this yet in the 6.8? There was an article a while back in 6mmbr on its use in the Grendel

The Vihtavuori 500 line of powders are double based with a shot of nitro celluose for good measure.

They are a little too slow for the 6.8. 120 may work with light bullets, 130 and 133 with 110-115gr bullets.

08-23-2009, 12:46 PM
I like to use VV in my 45acp and other pistols because it is so clean, so I tried to use a VV rifle powder VVN130 for the 6.8.

So far, in 6.8 SPC I have only used it at an indoor range and had to wait for the white smoke to clear before I could see to take the next shot. I believe the powder is still burning or some unburnt powder leaves the barrel of my ARP Recon.


08-23-2009, 02:40 PM
The N530 falls between their 130 & 133 as far as burn rate goes. I have this powder and intend to use it for 6.8SPC but don't want to be the pioneer as far as home brew loading data goes. 26.1 grains is considered max in a Grenedel dricing a 107 SMK.
AA uses 50,000 psi +/- because of the reduced strength of their larger faced bolt.

That loading should give me a starting point for 110 grain 6.8 loads. Perhaps 25.0, 25.5 26.0 and 26.5 grains of this powder could be tried with a 110 Hornady or 110 Nosler combined with cronograph readings should find a useable range for this powder. The bore of a 6.8 is slightly larger than 6.5 which will reduce pressure, the case capacity is very close. These are tests I would prefer to have at least one data source to rely on, especially VihtaVuori's would be nice.

I beleive this powder is well within the operating range for our round and needs to be explored.

08-23-2009, 04:29 PM
The N530 falls between their 130 & 133 as far as burn rate goes.

Not according to VihtaVuori burn rate chart. N530 is slower than N130 and N133.....check above link for burn rates.

08-23-2009, 08:44 PM
Not according to VihtaVuori burn rate chart. N530 is slower than N130 and N133.....check above link for burn rates.

I have Vu's reloading guide in my hand, according to this 530 is the same burn rate as 4895.
It may work on flat based 130gr bullets like the speer where there is more room in the case.

08-23-2009, 10:21 PM
I thought I remember seeing GS custom bullets website showing a load with their 80 gr. bullet using VV N110.
They show their 80 gr. HV bullet with a starting load of 20 grains VV N110

08-23-2009, 10:39 PM
Looking at the burn chart, it is also similar to TAC. If it is a ball powder, it should work pretty well with the 110+ GR bullets.

08-24-2009, 12:52 PM
It's a very fine extruded powder, and I do mean VERY fine. It meters as well as ball powder. Very dark and glossy looking kernels.

The reason "I" say it's close to or in between V-130 and V-133 is the charge weights VihtaVuori lists in their manuals. Their maximum charge weights when listed in identical loadings "usually" shows N-530 as having the same powder charge and sometimes less than V-133 using the same bullet. This usually means maximum pressure is reached with less powder by weight in the same case. Faster powder. Lots of their data shows identical charge weights between V-133 & N-530 on maximum loadings. They are very very close to one another.

VihtaVuori 4th edition

6.5 Grendel

100 grain Scenar max loadings:

27.2 grains of N-130
29.3 grains of N-530
29.3 grains of N-133

108 grain Scenar max loadings:

26.1 grains of N-130
26.7 grains of N-530
27.8 grains of N-133

123 Scenar max loadings:

26.7 grains of N-530
26.7 grains of N-133
27.0 grains of N-135

The Grendel case is very similar to 6.8 both in bullet weight and capacity. Burn rates can change on the scale depending on the cartridge being loaded. Their .223 data also shows N-530 being very close to N-133 but swapping places, so to speak. 69 grain Scenar shows a maximum of 22.7 grains of N-530 and only 21.9 grains of N-133. N-140 shows 24.7 grains as max.

They even have a couple of loadings listed for Lapua's 150 grain .308 one is 1.1 grain lower than N-135 in that cartridge, and .3 of a grain higher than N-135 with Lapuas 155 grain bullet.

According to Lapua's data using the only case close to ours (6.5) the N-530 and N-133 are very close to each other in that application. Lapua also states that N-530 is best all purpose powder when loading the Grendel. It's got my curiosity. My hope is Lapua will add 6.8SPC to their next manual.

08-24-2009, 02:02 PM
Very nice borderpatrol.

08-24-2009, 05:28 PM
Not to pick nits boderpatrol, but I was commenting on your original statement "The N530 falls between their 130 & 133 as far as burn rate goes". It does not.
If you are now saying that "they are close" YES you are right, they are.

I would expect to see charge weights that are very close too.. even though N530 is a slightly different powder in composition than the other two.

Even though charge weights and burning rates are close, a fair amount of testing with each powder will have to be done to learn which powder and load gives best accuracy and velocity in each individual rifle.
I have seen groups open up by 50% or better just changing a powder charge .5 grains....that is all other components were identical with the only difference being a slight change in powder charge.

I am going to start off with N130 and N133 because I am familiar with them and have some on hand.

08-24-2009, 07:05 PM
I made that staement based on the very limited application in 6.5 Grendel. N-530 comes in with N-133 in a virtual dead heat as far as maximum charge weight is concerned. In one application the N-133 had a higher charge than N-530 which would place N-530 between N-130 and N-133 in that specific loading.

I'm not trying to change anyones loading habits, I'm only suggesting that N-530 should be explored some more. I will try some limited testing within the next two weeks. Sierra's 115 SMK seems like a good candidate. Just to get a feel for this powder. I'll try 25.0, 25.5 and 26.0 grains just to get a chronograph reading and a peak at the primers.

08-24-2009, 09:21 PM
I do pay attention to burn rate charts, but take them with a grain of salt. There are differences chart to chart, some of which can be pretty large. and the bigger differences seem to be with the "foreign" makers like VV and Norma.

The VV site notes the rate is close to N135: Vihtavuori N530 "especially for 223 Remington"

What piqued my interest was the description of the 500 series powders:

"Adding nitroglycerol to the traditional single base powder makes possible in addition to geometry and coating a third controlled variable of ballistic properties: energy content. Vihtavuori calls powders that have nitroglycerol added (maximum 25%) high energy NC-powders, which form N500 series.

Adding nitroglycerol to the high energy N500 series is done by impregnation. After that, the grains are coated with a new type of chemical which results in very progressive burning characteristic "

We are finding that faster powders with small primers increase velocity, relatively speaking. While generally a faster burn has more explosive potential, what if the burn rate is only one component? Is it feasible to boost the explosive value while keeping a stable burn rate? The 530 increases its energy content via nitroglycerol. Yet it appears to maintain a modest burn rate, possibly helping to keep pressureswithin rifle tolerances. Maybe. Certainly worth a shot

08-24-2009, 09:58 PM
The best thing to do is buy some and try it like we did then you will know for sure if it works or not,
$28-$33 and a few hours seems cheap to get first hand experience.

08-25-2009, 12:15 PM
Nitroglyceral added by impregnation!

08-25-2009, 09:53 PM
I was able to begin testing today. The following loads were developed using the listed components.

Brass - New Remington large rifle primer

Primer - Remington 9.5 standard large rifle primer

Powder - VihtaVuori N-530

Bullets - Hornady 110 V-MAX seated at 2.260" over all length

The only thing not standard is every primer pocket was uniformed with a Sinclair primer pocket uniforming tool. Primers were seated on a RCBS benchmounted priming tool. All loads were drop charged using Harrel's premium powder measure. The necks were cleaned up with a VLD neck reamer.

25.0 grains of N-530 - velocity 2235 fps average, SD 20 fps. Virtually no head expansion.

25.5 grains of N-530 - velocity 2319 fps average, SD 18 fps. Very little case head expansion.

26.0 grains of N-530 - velocity 2368 fps average, SD 14 fps. Very little case head expansion.

26.5 grains of N-530 - velocity 2432 fps average, SD 16 fps. A couple of the cases showed .0005" case head expansion.

27.0 grains of N-530 - velocity 2472 fps average, SD 28 fps. One case showed .0007" case head expansion. Case filled to the datum line, but not compressed.

Upper used in this test was a Ranier Arms 18" SPR, WOA barrel, Samson free float rail system and Trijicon's 3.5 power red donut .308 drop compensated sight. The sight picture was poor. I used a standard NRA 200 yard standing/rapid sitting target. When I arrived lighting was good on the target, however the donut was black and lost in the black of the bullseye.

Groups were bad. I tried to get a better sight picture after the initial test with only 25.0 grains of N530 by filling the X-ring with white pasters. This helped some but I was still unable to see the donut, only the white dot when it was somewhere in the center. The best group at 200 yards was 3" wide by 4.5" tall, fired with the 26.5 grain load. In order to get more precise groups fron this scope a much smaller bullseye would have to be used, it would have to fit inside the inner donut with enough room left over to see a perfect circle of white surrounding it.

As shooting progressed the lighting changed placing the targets in the shade. As I was winding up I fired four rounds of my standard load as a control group. 27.5 grains of H-322 with 115 grain Sierra Match King seated to 2.260" The velocity on that loading averaged 2420 fps. All four rounds went through the white pasters I had used to fill the X-ring. A nice round 1.5" group. To be fair, the red donut was now red, it had become dark enough for the Trijicon to "fire up" and I was able to place the red donut inside of the black bullseye with good precision.

Next week I will conduct the same test using N-530 and Sierra 115 Match Kings, a bullet my rifle likes and see what happens.

By the way, none of the primers flattened out and higher charges may be possible with the 110 V-MAX. Because none of the groups faired all that well I probably won't run a test to see. Judging by the diminishing returns in velocity as I approached 27 grains, it's obvious this powder was running out of steam. Next time I'll try a NRA 100 yard target at the 200 yard line and see if it will fit inside the donut. The 26.5 grain load deserves a second chance with a target more suited to the scope.

08-28-2009, 06:12 AM
Yep IIRC that is similar to what I got a couple of years ago when I ran thru all the VV powders. If I had seen this post I could have saved you some time but doing something first hand is always the best teacher which I know all to well. The VV powder lines just do not match up well with the 6.8. There maybe one with the light bullets. There are not any powders that are within reason and fits in the case that has not already been tried already at some point. Until some new powders come out, which happens every so often, it more about what powder of the ones used, that most people list, does your particular barrel like with a particular bullet. We are lucky in the fact we have a number of very good powders that produce great performance.

08-28-2009, 09:14 AM

Any information on Norma powders (Probably 200 or 201)?