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Thread: 30-30 Cast

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    Member DanAKAL's Avatar
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    Default 30-30 Cast

    I want to work up some loads for my Marlin 336 (30-30 cal) using cast bullets. I can find lots of data using a 170 gr gas check bullet so this one won't be a problem. I have read about but can't seem to locate much data for 150 gr cast bullet loads. I am intending to use the RCBS 30-150-CM mold bullet sized at .309". I am also interested in a 100 - 125 gr cast bullet load but again no load data. Do any of you have any experience with 150 gr and 100-125 gr cast bullet loads for the 30-30?

    Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by DanAKAL View Post
    I want to work up some loads for my Marlin 336 (30-30 cal) using cast bullets. I can find lots of data using a 170 gr gas check bullet so this one won't be a problem. I have read about but can't seem to locate much data for 150 gr cast bullet loads. I am intending to use the RCBS 30-150-CM mold bullet sized at .309". I am also interested in a 100 - 125 gr cast bullet load but again no load data. Do any of you have any experience with 150 gr and 100-125 gr cast bullet loads for the 30-30?

    Dan
    The Lyman Cast Bulllet Handbook has lots of data for thei 151, 122 and 115 grain bullets. I use that book as a standard starting point for all my cast bullet shooting whether using Lyman moulds or others. Just not a problem even with different styles or slightly different bullet weights if you use their starting load and work up, just as you would do anyway even with Lyman's own bullets.

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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    Ditto to what BrownBear said. Also those little $7 load books for one cartridge have cast bullet load data.

    I have had good luck using Winchester powders and primers with the bullet you describe.
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

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    The 30-30 was originally loaded with a 160 grain cast bullet.

    I would use the same data that is for jacketed bullets. That's essentially what I do.

    Check the powder charges for cast bullets in the Lyman manual, and compare them to that for jacketed bullets with the same powder.

    The following, is from what I've read, and has worked for me.

    Using rifle powders for the 30-30, rather than pistol powders, like you would use for reduced loads you won't get leading, but you may need to back off from that to get good accuracy.

    Inaccuracy with cast bullets is largely due to bullet deformation, from too much velocity. The most critical issue in loading cast bullets is the powder charge.

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    Thanks for the info guys. Seems I'll need to get a new book. I don't have Lymans Cast Bullet Book, just Lymans 48th and Sierra. Digging around at Alliant and Hodgdon didn't produce very much either for cast bullets. Like you guys recommend I expect that the data I'm looking for is in the Lyman Cast Bullet Book.

    Smitty, I had read that most cast bullets could be started using jacketed bullet load data. What I read was to reduce the starting jacketed load by about 10% and start working up. Having been a handloader for only a couple of years and just getting started with cast bullets in my rifle I prefer to stick with some published data. Thanks for the info and I'm glad to hear that is what works for you and will very likely work for me later on.

    Thanks Again,

    Dan

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by DanAKAL View Post
    Thanks for the info guys. Seems I'll need to get a new book. I don't have Lymans Cast Bullet Book, just Lymans 48th and Sierra. Digging around at Alliant and Hodgdon didn't produce very much either for cast bullets. Like you guys recommend I expect that the data I'm looking for is in the Lyman Cast Bullet Book.

    Smitty, I had read that most cast bullets could be started using jacketed bullet load data. What I read was to reduce the starting jacketed load by about 10% and start working up. Having been a handloader for only a couple of years and just getting started with cast bullets in my rifle I prefer to stick with some published data. Thanks for the info and I'm glad to hear that is what works for you and will very likely work for me later on.

    Thanks Again,

    Dan
    Good deal. You'll like the book. There's a fair bit of data in the new one for rifle powders and velocities topping 2100 fps, in addition to the milder loads with pistol powders.

    On a related subject, you might keep your eyes open for old 30 cal moulds. There are some dandy heavy bullets out there that work just fine in 30-30, though they're not made anymore and haven't been made for a long time. I've got to "reclaim" them from a friend, but I've got several ranging from 175 to 215 grains intended for other 30 cals, but which work great in the 30-30.

    For game shooting, the best of the cast bullets have proven to be those with a flat nose (meplat) rather than a point. They're not really long range numbers with that flat nose, but then neither is the 30-30. Think about a +/- 200 grain flat nose cast from #2 alloy and gaschecked, moving along at 1900-2000 fps, and the 30-30 is a whole new beast as a game getter.

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    Wow Brown Bear 200 gr! I would have thought 180 gr bullets to be about the heaviest expected for a 30-30. I have some 115 gr cast bullets ordered from Midway, along with the Lyman Cast Bullet Manual. These will be for targets and plinking. I had planned to work up some 150 gr and 170 gr loads for medium game like coyotes and maybe deer. I might have to give the 200 gr a try provided I can find molds and such. For right now I'm buying bullets as I do not have any casting equipment yet. Maybe I'll get started casting bullets next spring. I called "Western Bullets" today but got no answer. They are about the only supplier I have found for 150 gr cast bullets. I'll try again tomorrow but if no answer I'll have to keep looking for 150 gr bullets.

    Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by DanAKAL View Post
    Wow Brown Bear 200 gr! I would have thought 180 gr bullets to be about the heaviest expected for a 30-30. I have some 115 gr cast bullets ordered from Midway, along with the Lyman Cast Bullet Manual. These will be for targets and plinking. I had planned to work up some 150 gr and 170 gr loads for medium game like coyotes and maybe deer. I might have to give the 200 gr a try provided I can find molds and such. For right now I'm buying bullets as I do not have any casting equipment yet. Maybe I'll get started casting bullets next spring. I called "Western Bullets" today but got no answer. They are about the only supplier I have found for 150 gr cast bullets. I'll try again tomorrow but if no answer I'll have to keep looking for 150 gr bullets.

    Dan
    Actually my heavies are approx 215 grains, depending on the alloy. I got the mould about 40 years ago for loading the 30-40 Krag, and liked the results so much I tried them in several different 30-30's. Just dandy there, too. You might want to check in with The Bull Shop here in Alaska for cast bullets. I hear great things about them, but have no firsthand experience. Mountain Molds has some dandy moulds suitable for the 30-30. Their 310-170 grain "Sensible Keith" pictured on the front page would be a perfect hunter in that weight range. I have no firsthand experience with the company but have heard excellent reports.

    I have used bullets from Montana Bullet Works, though not their 30 calibers. Their bullets are topnotch, reasonably priced, and shipping via USPS isn't all that bad. Looks like they have 30 cals weighing 180, 200 and 210.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    One of these days I need to get a 30-30 just for fun with cast bullets. I have dies and brass, and a mold.

    Anyhow, for plinking the little lee 115 gr bullet is a dandy. If you want really mild loads, the pistol powders such as unique and 2400 will produce very good accuracy in the 1200-1700 fps range. I've used those powders for cast in other chamberings and they are outstanding.

    For hunting, the RCBS 180 gr fp mold looks about as good as it gets in current molds. The rcbs molds are well made and cast great.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post

    For hunting, the RCBS 180 gr fp mold looks about as good as it gets in current molds. The rcbs molds are well made and cast great.
    I agree. If I was buying another 30 cal mould right now, that's the one. I've got the RCBS double cavity for a 200 gr 35 cal FP, and it's the single most accurate 35 cal bullet I've ever tried in any gun (#2 alloy and gas checks). I load them in 357 Mag, 357 Max, 35 Rem and 357 Herret (all Contenders) and in 35 Rem, 358 Winnie and 35 Whelen (all rifles), and they're unbelievable. And when I've used it for game, that FP really shines. Looking at the profiles for the 30 cal, it's so similar I'd expect the same there.

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    Thnaks Guys! More really good info. I sent Montana Bullet Works an email today for 150 gr and 170 gr bullets, both from Lyman molds. Haven't heard back from them yet but I expect that I will. I tried Western Bullets again today also but there is no answer at the phone number on their web site. I'll work with these for awhile and then maybe give the 200 gr a try.

    Dan

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    Marlin makes a great gun but their micro groove rifling may not like cast bullets at a higher velocity.

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    Here are a few Cast bullet 30/30 loads that I ran across the chrono today. Gun was a Savage 325 with 20" barrel.

    Naturally the use of this data is at your own risk. do your due dilligence and double check incase I have a typo in here.

    these were one shot only for velocity and pressure signs. Accuracy testing has not been done.




    30-150-SP Cast150 grWinchester74830 grCCI 2502.481749 fps30-150-SP Cast150 grWinchester74832 grCCI 2502.481927 fps30-150-SP Cast150 grWinchester76034 grCCI 2502.481971 fps30-150-SP Cast150 grWinchester76035 grCCI 2502.481994 fps30-150-SP Cast150 grWinchester76036 grCCI 2502.482021 fps
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

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    Member Alangaq's Avatar
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    Ok, so the forum did not like my cut and past from Excell......

    try this....

    Note this is an RCBS mould with Gas check. Alloy used was 18 BN

    30-150-SP Cast 150 gr Winchester748 30 gr CCI 250 2.48 1749 fps
    30-150-SP Cast 150 gr Winchester748 32 gr CCI 250 2.48 1927 fps
    30-150-SP Cast 150 gr Winchester760 34 gr CCI 250 2.48 1971 fps
    30-150-SP Cast 150 gr Winchester760 35 gr CCI 250 2.48 1994 fps
    30-150-SP Cast1 50 gr Winchester760 36 gr CCI 250 2.48 2021 fps
    “You’ve gotten soft. You’re like one of those police dogs who’s released in to the wild and gets eaten by a deer or something.” Bill McNeal of News Radio

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