Hi Hatchman: I've loaded 35-grain VMaxes a couple different ways and both shoot very accurately in both my .223s, a Remington and a Tikka.
The first load is with 24.5 grains of IMR 3031. The second is with 14.5 grains of Blue Dot. The load with Blue Dot chronos about 3450, the 3031 chronos about 3275. I prefer the Blue Dot because it uses less powder, has less recoil and is quieter. For more info on the Blue Dot loads, go to the James Calhoun website -- he's the guy who developed them.
If you are conviced the 35gr V-max is the way to go or if you've already purchased a ton of 35gr bullets then ignore the following suggestion. Your 1/12 twist Howa should easily handle up to 50-60 grain. I would consider shooting a heavier bullet because you get a much much better ballistic coeffient. You will carry more speed down range and fight the wind better than the relatively stubby 35gr (bc .109) Nosler BT 55gr (bc .267) You might check on the Nosler 2nd's available from their Shooter's Pro Shop. Alot more bang for your buck if you are sending a lot of rounds downrange. It's just a idea. http://www.shootersproshop.com/noslerfactory2nds.html Good luck
Thanks for the suggestions fellas! I haven't purchased any 35 grain bullets yet, but I heard rumors of some "quieter" loads for the little bullet. I was thinking the smaller bullet would be just a little more frangible than others and a little more quiet for some "urban" use. We have quite a few small farms that have P-dog infestations (safe shooting), but I would like to draw as little attention as possible from the bunny huggers too!! Thanks for all the awesome advice and web links!!