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Thread: Where the .30-30 gets it's name...

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    Default Where the .30-30 gets it's name...

    From the discussions about bears & guns, the .30-30 gets tossed around alot & I pondered, did they have a lever action in 1830? No they were still using muzzle loads back then, so then, where'd the 30? Come from? 1930 production dates (like the 06 in .30-06, denoting the 1906 Springfield)? Nope, the .30-30 lever action was around long prior to 1930...

    So I digs around & find this:

    From wikipedia.com:

    Although the original name is .30 WCF, the -30 in the designation was added to the name by Marlin, who did not want to put the name of rival Winchester on their rifles when they were chambered for the cartridge soon after its introduction[3]. The -30 stands for the standard load of 30 grains (1.9 g) of early smokeless powder, which was on par with IMR/DuPont's 4064. Over time Marlin's variation on the name stuck, though ".30 WCF" is also used.

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    My understanding is, that was in keeping with the practice of naming the cartridge by it's caliber, and amount of Black Powder it used. For safety, Black Powder has to fill the case.

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    Sounds about right to me. One need only look at the S&W/Colt bullet name wars.Kinda like 243 Winchester and 6mm Rem.

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    Default Smitty...

    That's the case for the .45-70...70grns of powder to the casing...the aught six, though, comes from the year it was produced...1906...

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    I think you found one of my old Wiki post, I hope it holds true.

    The original 30 WCF was chambered in the model 94 Winchester rifle in 1895. I think the first Marlin 1893 chambering for it was 1899. It's true the -30 was to represent the case size or black powder charge just as the 45-70, 38-55, 40-65, 40-72, etc but the 30 WCF never was a black powder round and the new "grey powder" used in the original 1890's smokeless loadings was quite different from powders of today. The -30 is a way of representing the "power level" of a caliber and of course made it easier to accept the new calibers by the old timers used to the two number designation. It became the most popular caliber for both Winchester and Marlin for many decades.

    Winchester in an attempt to capture markets from both old and new schools came out with the smokeless 32 WCF, or 32 Special. It was an attempt to gather steam from the market of the old 32-40 (black powder) target round and also from the popularity of the 30-30. Thus it was special. It had a slower twist and black powder style rifling so it could be loaded with soft lead and black powder or could use over the counter new smokeless powder loadings available from Winchester. I don't think we could call the effort successful but I believe that was the intent. A slightly worn 32 Special barrel won't stabilize bullets worth a crap and a well worn 30-30 barrel will shoot reasonably well. Likely one of the reasons why the 30-30 was so successful with competition like that. Personally, the sweetheart of the group for me is the 38-55. With bullets of about 255 grains at about 1500 fps, it will make exit holes in big animals. I also much prefer the Marlin 1893 rifle over the Winchester 1894, but, hey, that's just me.
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    When cartage case ammo replaced muzzle loading guns in the military they adopted the caliber/powder charge naming system, 44-40, 45-90, and so on. In the full military nomenclature of the day you would see 45-70-405, the 405 being bullet weight. This was continued in the military all through the black powder cartage years as well as leaking over to civilian use, usually without the bullet weight. The advent of smokeless powder changed all that because the power of the powder charge was no longer linked to its weight or volume in any way. A new system was devised by the military to be caliber/year adopted into service. The 30-06 was a 30 caliber put in service in 1906 even though it was created before 1906 (1903 I think?) it gets the name from year adopted into service. The 30-30 was very early on the smokeless changeover and so was tagged with the black powder nomenclature before the changeover. Often you will find double nomanclature in cartage name like 30-30/30WFC or today 5.56/223 and 7.62 NATO/.308.
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    Good info Andy. I have a box of Western ammo for the 30 WCF that is also marked as being for the 30-30. I don't know how old but has the big red W on it and is blue and white (or buff) colored.

    Not to argue or dispute your facts but I remember it like this.
    The 30 gov't round was in the Krag rifle and the 1895 Winchester. It was or became known as the 30-40 Krag. The next 30 Gov't round was the model of 1903, longer case neck and roundnose 220 grain load, short lived. The next was the 30 Gov't round of 1906, shortened to 30 '06 or 30-06.

    Comparing the 30-40 to the 30-30, without seeing them we would expect the 30-40 to be more powerful and it is. I think this was the intent of some of the later smokeless dsignations. The 32-20, 25-20, 25-35, etc. were smokeless rounds with the B.P. monicar to give an understanding of how this load might stack up against ol' Betsy. This is my thinking but I can't recall why or where I got this info, maybe came to me in a vision.
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    I'm enjoying the discussion on the 30-30 immensely. Despite the perceived wimpy ballistics its still one of my favorites. I have an older Marlin and its certainly one of my favorite rifles.

    I remember a few years back I found a small pile of .30 WCF casings on Shemya Island of all places. Headstamp research puts them at about 1897-1898 manufacture.

    I'm sure there's a great story behind how those got there...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    Good info Andy. I have a box of Western ammo for the 30 WCF that is also marked as being for the 30-30. I don't know how old but has the big red W on it and is blue and white (or buff) colored.

    Not to argue or dispute your facts but I remember it like this.
    The 30 gov't round was in the Krag rifle and the 1895 Winchester. It was or became known as the 30-40 Krag. The next 30 Gov't round was the model of 1903, longer case neck and roundnose 220 grain load, short lived. The next was the 30 Gov't round of 1906, shortened to 30 '06 or 30-06.

    Comparing the 30-40 to the 30-30, without seeing them we would expect the 30-40 to be more powerful and it is. I think this was the intent of some of the later smokeless dsignations. The 32-20, 25-20, 25-35, etc. were smokeless rounds with the B.P. monicar to give an understanding of how this load might stack up against ol' Betsy. This is my thinking but I can't recall why or where I got this info, maybe came to me in a vision.
    Yup, you’re not disputing what I was saying just adding details to it. The transitions in nomenclature were not overnight and so we get many overlaps like the 30-30, but most are not as well remembered or long lived. I was cutting to the chase of why the 30-30 and 30-06 are so named and left out much of the detail like you added.

    The 30-06 name was adopted in 06 and the predecessor was the 30Gov like you say. Some place in my brains box of obscure facts I remember 30-06 was first tested in 1903 and then well tested before put into full production to be adopted in 1906. Similar to the great old 1911 .45ACP gets its name from the year it was put in service and most people take it for granite that it was invented in 1911 when the first incarnation was tested against the million dollar 45 Lugar well before that.
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    Same concept "drams equiv" on a box of shotshells.

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    30-30 what a joke! It seems to be what most people today think of it. I love the 30-30. The only other true love i have is for my .35 rem. They are not 400yrd shooters but they were never meant to be. They were guns for guys that knew how to hunt. They could get close and put the bullet in the boiler room. They were and still are great guns that will outlive us. They are a sweet carry as well. Light and quick to point. well for 100yrs old and still going strong they have done well!

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgpcr View Post
    30-30 what a joke! It seems to be what most people today think of it. I love the 30-30. The only other true love i have is for my .35 rem. They are not 400yrd shooters but they were never meant to be. They were guns for guys that knew how to hunt. They could get close and put the bullet in the boiler room. They were and still are great guns that will outlive us. They are a sweet carry as well. Light and quick to point. well for 100yrs old and still going strong they have done well!

    I agree. And...the venerable old 30-30 is just about perfect for the cast bullet shooter. For one thing, that long neck covers just about all of the bullet, with none of it sticking down into the powder charge. Even a full charge of powder seems to work well with hard-cast gas-checked bullets at around 2200fps, or you can "down-load" it to around 1500fps for vermin and pests. I've got some pet 190-gr hardcast loads that will completely penetrate a 2-foot long spruce log end-to-end (about 1900fps)...
    And another plus: my wife doesn't complain too much about the recoil. (like she does with most of my other rifles)
    Long live the 30-30!

    Marshall/Ak

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marshall/Ak View Post
    I agree. And...the venerable old 30-30 is just about perfect for the cast bullet shooter. For one thing, that long neck covers just about all of the bullet, with none of it sticking down into the powder charge. Even a full charge of powder seems to work well with hard-cast gas-checked bullets at around 2200fps, or you can "down-load" it to around 1500fps for vermin and pests. I've got some pet 190-gr hardcast loads that will completely penetrate a 2-foot long spruce log end-to-end (about 1900fps)...
    And another plus: my wife doesn't complain too much about the recoil. (like she does with most of my other rifles)
    Long live the 30-30!

    Marshall/Ak
    That's true. It seems the 30-30 was made for cast bullets. IIRC, and don't quote me, the first 30-30 loading was a 160 grain Cast bullet, at 1900 fps.

    I shoot Cast Bullets in my 30-30. I've been doing it, and doing it, and doing it. You'd think by now, I'd have found an accurate load, or learned to shoot with Iron Sights.

    I'm using 170 grain GC bullets. I'm shooting basicly full power loads using the same powder, I use for jacketed bullets.


    I shot some today. I'm still tryin. My trouble is, I have 2 sets of bifocals and it's hard to focus without seeing two front sights.

    Thanks Murphy, I always wondered why some early smokeless cartridges like the 30-40 Krag were named like the earlier BP cartridges.

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    I think I have pushed more lead from a 30-30 than any other chambering, dang hard to think of a better every day using rifle. 29 grains of 4895 under a 170 grain gas checked cast bullet or a FNSP will do amazing things inside 150 yards.
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    So you are telling me the 30.06 is a 30 caliber, and created in 2006? Hahahahahah

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hope and Change my * View Post
    So you are telling me the 30.06 is a 30 caliber, and created in 2006? Hahahahahah

    Ahhh!!! Well you're real close just a century off. Yeah, pretty much a 1906 cartridge. Actually the year the cartridge was adapted by the U.S. Army in the M1903A3 rifle in 1906. Why is this funny did I miss something or did you just go about a half bubble of plumb??
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    Ahhh!!! Well you're real close just a century off. Yeah, pretty much a 1906 cartridge. Actually the year the cartridge was adapted by the U.S. Army in the M1903A3 rifle in 1906. Why is this funny did I miss something or did you just go about a half bubble of plumb??
    I must have missed the joak also.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marshall/Ak View Post
    I agree. And...the venerable old 30-30 is just about perfect for the cast bullet shooter. For one thing, that long neck covers just about all of the bullet, with none of it sticking down into the powder charge. Even a full charge of powder seems to work well with hard-cast gas-checked bullets at around 2200fps, or you can "down-load" it to around 1500fps for vermin and pests. I've got some pet 190-gr hardcast loads that will completely penetrate a 2-foot long spruce log end-to-end (about 1900fps)...
    And another plus: my wife doesn't complain too much about the recoil. (like she does with most of my other rifles)
    Long live the 30-30!

    Marshall/Ak
    The 30-30 and cast bullets are a match made in heaven! With 170grn flatpoints they are devestating on game. I would not feel underguned for moose one bit with one. You just have to get closer than if you were shooting an 88 magnum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ADfields View Post
    I think I have pushed more lead from a 30-30 than any other chambering, dang hard to think of a better every day using rifle. 29 grains of 4895 under a 170 grain gas checked cast bullet or a FNSP will do amazing things inside 150 yards.
    I thought I had used that load with 170 Grain Hornadys, but it was 29.5 grains.

    I've never done anything amazing with it, though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    I thought I had used that load with 170 Grain Hornadys, but it was 29.5 grains.

    I've never done anything amazing with it, though.

    Smitty of the North
    Well maybe I amaze easy, but I put one of them loads through a big 7X6 bull elk quartering away from me. He hunched up and walked less than ten foot before expiring, I thought that was amazing. I have killed many an elk and all but that one have gone 50 yards or more. I hit one young bull with a 30-06 3 times in the chest thinking I was missing since he never reacted at all till shot number 4, made a mess of his right front quarter.
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