Marlin Firearms Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've been testing ammo for my Western Field 740A (Marlin 336) in 30-30. I've tested American Eagle 150gr, Winchester Super-X 170gr, Remington Core-Lokt 170gr and Hornady Lever Evolution 160gn.

My gun prefers the American Eagle 150gn, by A LOT. I'm shocked at the difference in accuracy between the different rounds.

336targets-3.jpg

This is benched at 50 yards. I still haven't been able to take the gun to the 100 yard range yet. I'm using stock open sights, so some of the variation is my own. With this round, I feel like the gun is shooting 1 MOA or less.

So let's switch to 170gn Remington.

336targets-2.jpg

What the heck is going on. I understand the groups opening up a little, but that's hardly a little, especially at 50 yards. I don't have any Winchester Super-X 170gn targets, but they the same. Just for reference, I shot two three round groups at that target. The first was low, so I adjusted my hold for the second one.

Now, let's check out Hornady.

336targets-1.jpg

This may not see a lot different from the 150gn, but this is only one example. These 160gn Lever Evolution rounds didn't shoot as tight as the American Eagle. Another crazy thing is how high these rounds shot. I had heard they shot high, but dang. I'm thinking they'll land a foot or more higher than other ammo at 100 yards.

I've just installed my new Skinner sights (after these groups were shot) and I'll be adjusting the height of the front sight during my next range visit (filing it down). The only ammo that seems to be at all available in 30-30 at the moment is Lever Evolution and 170gn Federal. If I decide to use Lever Evolution, I probably won't need to file down the front sight at all.

I just wish finding 150gn American Eagle (or any other 150gn) was easier.

So what's going on here? Any advice?
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
27,863 Posts
It isn't all that atypical. Hornady does shoot high and depending on which rifle I'm feeding it varies between 4 to 8 inches higher than anything else.

Usually, each gun tells you which ammo it prefers. Oddly enough, my two 30-30's both like Federal Blue Box 150GR and 170GR. My new to me 1999 30AS spit Hornady LE's all over the target. With the Federal 150GR it printed 1 inch at 100YDS. Not to mention, it was very predictable sighting in too. Remington and Winchester shot better than Hornady too but not as well as Federal.

Are you installing the skinner aperture sight? If yes, be sure to bore sight it to get you close. My eyes are too taxed anymore with irons so I have scoped all my Marlins. I just pull the bolt and bore sight it at 25YDS getting the scope as close as possible. It usually puts me within4 inches of bulls eye at 25YDS. Then I adjust from there to about an inch high of bulls eye and jump to 100YDS for final dial in. I'm usually done within 4 to 6 shots.

I assume this rifle is new to you. If yes, I would check your barrel for copper fouling or possibly leading. Either way a really thorough barrel cleaning might be just what it needs. Although, Hornady LE's will still shoot quite high. HA!

Sorry if this sounds a tad rambling on or incoherent, I'm more than a tad tired and need to have a head on collison with my pillow.

Hope it helps anyway.

Jack
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
13,209 Posts
Mine loves the Hornady Leverevolution Ammo 160 grainers!!!!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Bugsmasher

·
El Kabong
Joined
·
8,333 Posts
Ammo Suggestions, What's Your Gun Like?
Home made, 165gr Ranch Dog boolit, 25gr IMR4895, CCI BR primer

Store boughts are like this <-------------------->
Mine are like this <--->

If the dashes are thousands of an inch

My 30AS and 1894 Winnie have never had a store bought round though them as long as Ive owned either
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,957 Posts
Home made, 165gr Ranch Dog boolit, 25gr IMR4895, CCI BR primer

Store boughts are like this <-------------------->
Mine are like this <--->

If the dashes are thousands of an inch

My 30AS and 1894 Winnie have never had a store bought round though them as long as Ive owned either
Do you know your velocity?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
My 30As liked the 150 grain sivertips it came with. About 1 1/4 inches at 100 yards.
Just started playing with my sons first centerfire lever, a 70's era 336. So far 33 grains of H335 with a sierra 150 and 32 grains of Varget with the same Sierra 150 will stay in the same 1 1/4 at the same range with a leupold 2-7.
Load development will continue when it warms up some.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Looks like I need to play with the 160 hornadys. I picked up a couple of boxes but had not started with them. The leverevolution ammo shoots well form my Winchesters.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,306 Posts
What you experienced is not unusual.

Each rifle has its own distinct personality. The rifle and target will tell the Shooter what the rifle likes in terms of bullet design and weight, powder charge, primer, etc.

And sometimes, the Shooter will see a difference going from 50 to 100 yards. And a big difference is sometimes evident when shooting out to 200 yards. I've shot loads that worked well at 100 yards, but "fell apart" at 200 yards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,600 Posts
Like others have mentioned, different rifles seem to like different brands and bullets in my experience; some by quite a bit. I've never put any Hornady LE through a 30-30 yet, and it's been a while now, but the last paper comparison I did with different brands of off the shelf loads mine liked the Federal best.. in 170gr I believe. One of these days I'll have to try some LE in the 30-30 caliber to see how it likes it, my .35 rem prefers the stuff.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
6,933 Posts
My Marlin 336a 24" barrel, mfg 1948 shoots and cycles Federal Blue Box ammunition, both 150 and 170 grain very well. (#3030a 150 grain 2390 FPS muzzle velocity, and #3030b-170 grain 2200 FPS muzzle velocity). So far I have shot nice groups at 25 and 50 yards. Usually within 1" to 1 1/2" of bull. When my shots are off, its my fault. I use the 150 grain the most for practice. Until last year, I had not shot a rifle in years and initially, it showed. I have had good results with Remington Cor-Lok 170 grain, but I still lean toward the Federal ammunition. Winchester white box 150 or 170 grain was a waste of money. The rounds dropped sooner than the other ammunition I have fired, so I won't buy anymore. I have not shot beyond 50 yards yet, my Winchester Model 94 30-30 has a crap scope on it, so I have not tried it at the range at 100 yards. I intend to rectify the crap scope problem shortly. If the weather ever changes to SPRING, I hope to get out to the range ASAP. None the less, me and my guns like Federal. :cheers:


Cheers!



Mike T.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
JackW1 - well, I may have found an issue. When I first bought the gun, I checked the bore and ran a bore snake through it a couple times. I've since just kept up on it with a bore snake. I've only put about 50 rounds through it. Today, because of what you said, I took a brass brush to the bore and the fouling is never ending. I went through half a bag of patches before I propped the gun up in corner muzzle down and poured some solvent down the barrel. I'm going to let it soak for a couple hours and then attack it again. If by some stroke of luck, I managed to find the original owner, I wouldn't be surprised if they said they had never cleaned the gun. I've been spoiled with most of my gun purchases because my local shop goes over everything they bring in used and clean it up really well. I had to make this purchase from another shop, and they clearly just wiped in down and put it on the shelf.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
No two rifles are the same as far as ammo goes, but I have always had better accuracy in my 336's with Federal 150gr ammo. My 1969 vintage 336 C, scoped, would consistantly print 1/2" to 3/4" groups at 100 yards with an occasional 3/8" group. I load most ammo that I shoot, but as far as factory ammo, I have had great luck with Federal ammo.


Jim.........
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I think I have it cleaned now. I definitely want to go shoot it again. I literally went through at least 250 patches. It's still not spotless. If I don't notice any changes in accuracy, I'm going to pay to have it professionally cleaned, possibly by someone with a big ultrasonic. I'd like to be sure that I have a solid baseline of cleanliness. I'm not too obsessive about keeping my guns insanely clean, but this was ridiculous. I don't think that bore had ever seen a cleaning bush, at least not in the last 20 years.
 

·
El Kabong
Joined
·
8,333 Posts
Do you know your velocity?
1750ish FPS they are reduced loads for Mrs Fred. Dont need any more than that, if you wanted 30 grains will push them a tad over 2000
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
BillyHill,
The 150's shot well enough I never got to the 170's. I have a box of 170's stashed away somewhere I guess I need to get to them.
The next project was with the Lee 309-170 FP GC. Would you have any starting loads you like with this bullet?
It is very similar to the Lyman 311141/311041 mold.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,379 Posts
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top