Bulk Loading 22 ARC on the Dillon XL-750 – Ultimate Reloader

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Hornady just released the 22 ARC and I’ve completed my first rifle build for it! Now it’s time to work up a load on the Dillon XL-750.

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About 22 ARC

Hornady released the 22 ARC just a few months ago and it has made a huge impact in the AR-15 world.

From Hornady

The 22 ARC (Advanced Rifle Cartridge) brings exceptional power and performance, elegantly packed into a compact cartridge that fits into your AR-15 but is equally at home in a bolt action. By utilizing the new 62 gr. ELD-VT™ bullet, the 22 ARC brings extraordinary performance, that rivals the 22-250, to the AR-15 platform.

The 22 ARC was engineered to use modern, high-BC bullets. Designing the cartridge and chamber in unison provides consistent accuracy, great velocity spreads and an outstanding shooting experience. This cartridge is the result of careful and meticulous design, following the same proven methodology as the highly acclaimed 6mm ARC.

We decided to build a bolt action for this stellar varminting cartridge and did some load development with Winchester StaBALL Match and Hornady’s 62 grain ELD-VT bullets. 

We observed ⅓ MOA accuracy with this load in our 22 ARC build with standard deviations in the 0.7 fbs to 1.6 fps range.

Set-Up

I started with the Dillon quick change kit.

Each of these kits comes with a powder measure (with small and large bars), powder die, toolhead, and toolhead stand. This allows you to leave your dies and powder charge set for a particular cartridge for faster and simpler caliber conversions. 

I also needed a caliber conversion kit for the Dillon XL-750. I used a 6mm ARC kit as I had it on hand and all I needed to do was change the funnel from a 6mm funnel to a .22 funnel. 

Tearing Down the Press in Preparation for 22 ARC

After stripping the XL-750 of its .45 ACP setup, I started the caliber conversion. The lower drop tube section and rocker block insert from the .45 ACP setup were the same as from the 6mm ARC kit so I left them and moved over the pieces from the new kit.

Next came dropping in the ramp piece, shellplate, bolt, and the ejector wire. I tightened the shellplate all the way down then backed it out slightly until it could freely rotate it.

Then I secured the small set screw on the side to retain the position and verified proper indexing. This adjustment is critical! With the shellplate tension set, I replaced the drop tube and swapped out the large pistol case feed plate for the small rifle one. 

I returned the toolhead to the press and pinned it in place.

With the large powder bar installed, I swapped the 6mm funnel for a .223 funnel, placed the powder measure in station two, and adjusted the height. I took some time to ensure it was set up correctly with the bar articulating and moving close to the end with each stroke.

I left a very small amount of play in the measure (actuate and press the measure to see how it moves) to prevent smashed case mouths. I replaced the rod I had removed for easier height adjustment and ran the handle to check the function.

I had to add spring tension, making sure there is some coil visible in the rebound spring. I secured the lock ring on the powder measure and tightened the clamp screws.

Progressive Reloading

I filled the measure with StaBALL Match, a ball powder that meters especially well from a progressive. Before even removing the powder from the bench I placed a label on the measure to prevent powder mixups. Next came setting the measure to dispense 29.5 grains.

I zeroed a primed case on a scale, dropped some powder, and placed the full case on the scale. I dumped the powder back in the hopper, made some adjustments and repeated the process until I reached the desired charge. It’s also recommended to drop 30 charges and return the powder to the hopper before loading any complete rounds to help everything settle. 

When the powder measure was set, I opened my set of Hornady dies, set up the sizing die in station one and checked the shoulder bump on a fired case with a comparator before and after sizing. (I like to run about 0.002” bump in precision bolt guns, 0.003” in an AR.)

22 ARC Brass after Full Length Sizing with the Hornady Sizing Die

The seating die consumed station four for easy access.

I left station five empty, but it would be a good place for a crimping die if you so chose.

I filled Armanov’s bullet tray with the 62 grain ELD-VT’s and set to work on a dummy cartridge. Finally, I set up the priming system in station three with the small primer drop tube.

After adding to each station, I tested the machine to make sure that all actuated correctly. When I was satisfied, I began cranking out cartridges! 

Conclusion

Progressive loading is far faster than single-stage and still produces quality ammunition. I had 0.005” runout with these rounds! I was very happy with this setup and look forward to doing more with this cartridge. 

Get the Gear

Dillon XL-750 at Creedmoor Sports

Dillon Quick Change Kit

Dillon Caliber Conversion Kit

Hornady 22 caliber 62 grain ELD-VT Bullets 

Hornady 22 ARC Cases at Midsouth Shooters Supply

Winchester StaBALL Match Powder at Midsouth Shooters Supply

Hornady 22 ARC Full Length Die Set at Midsouth Shooters Supply

Hornady 22 ARC 75 grain ELD-M Ammunition 

Hornady 22 ARC 88 grain ELD-M Ammunition

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Thanks,
Gavin Gear

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