Lighter bullets in .30-30 - Page 62
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Thread: Lighter bullets in .30-30

  1. #611
    High Priest of the Powder Hoarders Marlin Fanatic
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    Coastal Missouri
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    My eyeballs are spinning after re-reading this entire thread again, but now I have all the spreadsheets printed and saved for later, plus a full page of handwritten notes on loads to try.

    I'm semi-retired these days and hope to get at least one range day a week, hopefully more when the weather is decent. I sold a bunch of handguns but the Marlin stable is still intact, everything from 218 Bee to 45-70, and my current favorite is the 32-20, but I realized I've been neglecting my 30-30, and that needs to be rectified. It still wears that $24 Tasco 3x9 scope I put on it the day I bought it about 15 years ago, and I have no plans to change that.

    The bullets I have on the "to-do" list include the 71-grain FMJ at .311", the Lee Soup Can at .313" with Alox, and the Hornady 90-grain XTP at .309". Powders will range from Unique to Trail Boss to whatever smiles at me from the powder shelf. 4198, 4756, Reloder-7, and a few others are whispering my name.....

    I visited the ammo locker tonight and realized I still have a half-dozen loads that either haven't been tested or the earlier results were lost to the fog of time and poor record keeping, so I'll just have to shoot them all and see what works. Some idiot (who stares back at me from the mirror every day) shot my chronograph again last year, so it might be awhile before I can do anything more than accuracy testing, but that will suffice for now.

    It's good to have purpose in life.
    We're at the point where Hamas are freedom fighters and the NRA is a terrorist organization. —Twitter satirist @hale_razor

  2. #612
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
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    Papajohn -
    I have a similar cat rack near my reloading station - she watches me work from it.
    I like the powder shelves - I'll look for one similar.

  3. #613
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
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    50 times
    I loaded and fired 130grn jsp, 170grn jsp, 119grn cast and 170grn cast; I load everything I shoot. One deer killed with the 130grn did run and required tracking. That was mostly due to being in thick stuff and it did leave a light blood trail. A large buck shot with a 170jsp dropped and stayed dropped. The cast bullet loads have only been used on small game. I like the 30/30 a lot; and though I've not given the 150gr jsp a try, I like the 170s for deer at the present time.

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  5. #614
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
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    works great in 30 carbine!

    Quote Originally Posted by 35remington View Post
    For the cast bullet shooter, look no farther than the Lee C113F, also known as the "Soup Can."

    It's an "all body" type bearing length bullet, sort of in the Louverin style, and quite accurate. Somehow it seems more appropriate to use a lighter bullet on smaller game, and it is suitable for the hunting of all animals smaller than deer.

    Usually six to eight grains of one of the fast pistol/shotgun powders will net you the right results insofar as velocity and accuracy. W231, Unique, Red Dot, Herco, 700X, et. al. will serve. Most of my use of this bullet has been in the 30-06, but the bullet will do the same thing driven at the same velocity in .30-30, with a few grains less powder needed to get the same speeds. Six to eight grains is right for the 30-30 case.

    A bullet such as this kills small game and pests very well (far better than a .22) and meat loss is minimal if the bullet is cast hard or quenched. Noise is also very substantially less than a full power .30-30 load, and this lower noise helps when hunting small game. If fast powders are used, no fillers are needed, as the fast powder is reasonably position insensitive.

    This lighter bullets hit lower than full power loads, but duplex crosshairs can be used as a lower aiming point, or the rear sight raised a notch to put them at point of aim, so options are available to use them in the field with no rezeroing of the rifle being necessary.

    If you prefer jacketed bullets, several options are available in the 110 - 125 grain range that will be suitable in hollowpoint, softpoint and full metal jacket roundnose variants, this last being suitable only for two shot use in a levergun.
    Don't you mean the LEE C309-113-F, p/n 90362?

    I use this in M1 Carbines with full tilt loads of 296 or H110, hard cast with g/check, and never had any leading problems in the barrel or gas system.

    Awesome bullet. Same 100 yard accuracy as sierra 110 grain FMJs.

    I'm wondering what the LEE C309-170-F p/n 90368 would do in the 30/30? It's just blunt enough to seem safe in the magazine?


  6. #615
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    147 times
    Quick question for you guys, has anyone here tried resizing and reloading the Speer .312 100gr Golddot bullet? TIA

    Come to think of it, has anyone even seen any of these bullets?
    Last edited by 1894cfan; 08-19-2018 at 12:46 PM. Reason: Additional question
    Maineiac likes this.

  7. #616
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    Sep 2018
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    I DO LOAD FOR and actually hunt deer with a 30-30 and "I use a chronograph"...along with online ballistic calculators from Hornady, Nikon, and others.

    YES... I considered those.... lighter and slightly faster {at muzzle} 130 grain SPEER bullets....
    Then, I did some online research ... asked some wise old hunters....

    I carefully considered all that I had read or heard from others who have actually been there and done that.

    I looked carefully at the "at target distance" retained energy based on real speeds... and Ballistic Coefficients...

    I NOTICED that the "at target speeds" and "at target distance retained energy" was slightly more favorable with the heavier bullets.

    The at target bullet drop was very similar...for 130, 150 and 170 grain 30-30 bullets...
    when fairly compared at actual real world matching at launch speeds.

    I BECAME CONFIDENT THAT... the 150 or 170 grain bullets were probably enough to get the job done...

    and, I decided to use a 150 grain for fall of 2017 hunts...

    150 or 170 grain Speer FP would be a good choice "if available"...
    Due to good field reports from hunters and the higher than Most Ballistic Coefficients.
    Sierra and Remington Bullets also enjoy good field reports...
    ...although the slightly lower ballistic coefficients do show loss of speed or loss of foot pounds energy at distance...
    when compared to the SPEER bullets.

    I took two grazing deer at sunset last fall... at a laser verified distance of 324 Yards or 297 meters ... WITH A 30-30...
    One well placed REMINGTON 150 grain 30-30 bullet passed through the first deer ...knocked it down...

    A SPINE SHOT was intentionally placed to avoid tracking the deer after the thorny woods near the quick sands of the Missouri River.

    I know... I traded some of the backstrap for reduced recovery time and effort.

    That bullet which spined one deer "as intended"... actually knocked down and crippled a second deer... which also added to the family meat supply.
    We ate well last winter.

    This was done with my Scoped Vintage Marlin 336 SC 30-30 using Remington Green and Yellow Box 150 grain Core-Lokt 2013 production factory ammo ...
    IN MY TESTS that factory load sent the bullet at a chronograph verified 2250 fps from my 22 groove 1971-'72 production vintage Marlin 336 SC 30-30.
    I know, Remington claims a velocity of over 2300 fps... My 20" barrel did not get that speed out of their ammo.

    However, That factory load happened to be very accurate...IN MY RIFLE... so, I went with it....

    My first batches of Max pressure + Max speed handloads are faster... and were less accurate from my rifle when compared to Remington 150 core-lokt ammo which I happened to have some of...

    "A fast miss is still a miss."

    ... so, I went hunting with the slower and more accurate factory ammo.... and, it worked.

    When I start running low on that ammo I will continue 30-30 handloading for accuracy efforts.

    As an aside, I can recommend that 150 grain Remington Core-Lokt bullet effective on deer ...even at 300 yards.
    For what it is worth, I believe that the same Remington 150 grain 30-30 bullet is available as a loading component if you prefer to handload those.

    A thorough knowledge of ballistic drop and wind drift at distances... would b
    e wise to have memorized and IN MIND or on a cheat sheet....
    ...Especially, If you intend to make shots over 150 or 200 yards with the often under-rated 30-30.
    I can also recommend the Vortex Crossfire II V-Brite reticle ILLUMINATED RED DOT 3-9x40 riflescope and the DNZ high sized rings
    that just so happen to pair well with a Marlin 336 30-30 and a 40 mm objective lens Scope ...
    ....even if we prefer to leave the iron sights in place... such as I have.

    That is what I have on my Marlin Levergun in 30-30. It gathers available light well at dusk... when the deer actually appear...
    and the red dot is plenty to aim with ... Also, even though my scope was a 3-9x40 I dialed to 6x for the shot.... Exactly, as I had on pre-season range test day.

    I have used that combination effectively, and see no reason to change it.... UNLESS, I might prefer heavier bullets in BEAR COUNTRY where the bigger bears live.

    Since small Bears, Cougars, Wolves, etc... certainly do exist where I hunt... I decided to load Sierra or Speer 150 or 170 grain bullets... designed for 30-30.
    ...and then... I actually used Remington factory 150 grain because it happened to be more accurate in my rifle... on test day.

    IF you want more speed at distance and more foot pounds of energy at distance...
    for a more effective kill on medium sized animals POSSIBLY INCLUDING BEAR...

    MAY I SUGGEST that you look closely at the 170 grain SPEER FP or "170 SPR FP" as Hodgdon calls it in their online data... ??

    That 170 grain Speer has a higher Ballistic Coefficient for more retained speed and energy at distance than most others of similar weight offer

    Federal Fusion Factory 170 ammo slightly beats the BC of Speer....
    But, some hunters have reported failures to expand in game or extremely thick jackets with those particular Federal Fusion 30-30 bullets.


    30-30 Win PISTOL data from Hodgdon {available online} shows "closer to real world speeds" than the rifle data they post does...
    20" will shoot a bit faster than 14" barrels and somewhat slower than 24" pressure test barrels might ... exactly, as one would reasonably expect.

    Load wisely , and enjoy the hunt.
    Vooch, ALR and Hare Splitter like this.

  8. #617
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
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    29 times
    30-30 130 grain SPEER might be worth looking at.
    Higher Ballistic coefficient than most... Fairly priced, and can achieve decent accuracy within safe pressures.

    See Hodgdon ON-line data and Vihtavuori online data.

    Hodgdon shows "pistol data" for 14" 30-30 winchester caliber ...that might offer some insight into what your shorter than 24" barrel might actually achieve.

    I would NOT recommend 30-30 bullets lighter than 170 or 150 grains in BEAR COUNTRY.
    IF BEARS are in the woods... 170 grain SPEER might be worth a look. Higher BC for more retained speed at distance than most... and "are fairly priced."

    Do Load Wisely, and Enjoy the hunt.
    Hare Splitter likes this.

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