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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Bought my first lever gun recently, a 336CS in 30-30. I'm about ready to start loading my own rounds for it but jacketed bullets appropriate for the 30-30 are hard to come by these days so I'm thinking about using some cast bullets. From my reading on the forum it seems the consensus is that cast bullets are perfectly fine for hunting and for use in the microgroove barrels. I haven't slugged the bore, but I'll get that done in a day or two.

My goal is to find the right bullet for hunting hog and deer as well as plinking at the range. I want to be able to shoot them to normal jacketed rifle velocities (2100 fps neighborhood). It seems that the Ranch Dog 165gr mold is well liked and I see that Carolina Cast offers these bullets. I know hardness can depend on a few things but since the hardness of these bullets isn't listed on the website, I decided to go digging for more info. The alloy listed on his website is 95% lead, 2.5% tin and 2.5% antimony. I haven't found any info on BRN for that particular mix but I found two that were close:

Name% Pb% Sn% SbBRN
??? - 8

This leads me to believe that the Carolina Cast recipe has a BRN somewhere in between those two. Of course that could be different if they are heat treated; if any of yall have tested the BRN of the carolina cast bullets, please let us know your results. Anyhow, I was under the impression that in order to shoot cast bullets to the speeds I'm looking for and to be optimum for hunting, I should be looking for something in the 18-22 BRN range with a percentage of antimony around or under 3% to prevent the bullets from breaking up upon impact with bone.

What say you? Should I go with Carolina Cast for my purposes or something like Beartooth bullets (160gr FP GC, 3% Sn, 21 BRN)?
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