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Old January 8, 2006, 07:15 PM   #1
azredhawk44
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.30-30 Bullet Question

Can a hard-cast all lead .30 caliber bullet be shot from the .30-30? What's available out there? I would want some super-light ones around 100gr for plinking and hi-velocity longer distance targets like coyotes.

Who makes them?

I would like to avoid speer, hornady and those guys jacketed bullets just because the bullet is the most expensive piece of the reloading process. If I can get 500 lead bullets for $20 or 100 jacketed for the same price, I want the lead (except when I'm actually hunting).

Will I be able to hit 2500-2600fps with a 100-120gr lead bullet from a .30-30?

PS - Powder I currently have for this rifle is Reloader15, but I am willing to try other brands if they will give me better performance or if they help prevent excessive leading.

Thanks, all!
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Old January 8, 2006, 08:23 PM   #2
cobra81
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To get those velocities you are going to need a gas-checked bullet.
If you've got a lever 30-30, you're also gonna need a flat-nose design,
and those are a bit harder to find in the weight you're looking for.
I cast for my 30-30, and Lee makes a 113gr. mold http://www.midwayusa.com/eproductpag...eitemid=480790
that will give you light bullets in a flat-nose design.
If you don't want to cast your own, google on "cast Bullets" and you will
find a lot of sources.
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Old January 8, 2006, 08:46 PM   #3
BigSlick
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Bushwhacker Bullets makes a few...

Arms and Ammo is one source

HTH,

BigSlick
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Old January 8, 2006, 09:12 PM   #4
Jim Watson
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Loading a light cast bullet, even with gas check, to high velocity is not a good route to accuracy. You would be better off with the heaviest available, get 170s with gas checks and ease up to as high a velocity as they will stand. If you make the 2000+ fps of factory loads you will be doing good.
Good accuracy from storebought cast bullets is a matter of luck anyhow.
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Old January 8, 2006, 09:23 PM   #5
Mike Irwin
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You can also go the paper-patched route. You'll have to do those yourself, though.
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Old January 8, 2006, 09:23 PM   #6
Mike Irwin
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You can also go the paper-patched route. You'll have to do those yourself, though.
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Old January 8, 2006, 11:35 PM   #7
jclaude
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30-30 lead Bullets

Try Wideners. They have hard Cast in a 110 gr RN & a 150 gr FP. $29.00 & $31.00/1000 - respectively.

http://www.wideners.com/
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Old January 8, 2006, 11:54 PM   #8
azredhawk44
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Thanks guys.

My gun is a .30-30 Winnie 94 from the 1970's that I just replaced the rear sight on.

I only have a 25yard range to use unless I drive way out of town, but I went there after putting the sight on and I made 3 touching holes on the bullseye with it with 170gr Hornady FP handloads with 32gr of Reloader15.

I was really pleased with this result and I like how the 170's shoot. They will definitely be the hunting bullets for this gun.

Cobra81: Have you cast any 113gr .30-30 bullets personally? How did they group? Is the rate of twist in the Win94 going to accomodate such a low weight bullet? What will it cost me to get set up to cast bullets from ground zero?
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Old January 9, 2006, 01:05 AM   #9
cracked butt
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Make your own...
170 gr lee flat nose mould- $15
empty coffee can- free
hotplate or campstove from walmart $9-35
Lee .309" sizing die + liquid alox lube- $11
1000 .308 gaschecks -$18
Wheelweights- free if you ask the right people.

For about the cost of 2 or 3 boxes of bullets you can produce your own.
With a gaschecked bullet cast from wheelweights, you should do allright up to 1900-2000 fps. Wheelweight alloy give you a pretty good balance between hardness and expansion.

I would forget about trying to push a bullet much faster in a 30-30, cast bullets are fairly easy to get to shoot accurately most of the time at moderate velocities, but you run into difficulties if you go to light or push them too hard.
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Old January 9, 2006, 01:28 AM   #10
Leftoverdj
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I cast the 113 Lee. It shoots very well to 50 yards, and groups open markedly by 100 yards. Forget it if you are going to be shooting much past 100 yards. Forget plain base cast bullets at anything over .22 lr velocities.

If your chief concern is saving money, www.gibrass.com has pulldown 110 grain bullets from .30 Carbine for $45 a thousand. Since they are FMJ, you should only put one in the chamber and one in the tube of a tube fed rifle.

I am a far gone cast bullet nut, but cast presents its own set of challenges and limitations. If you go into it solely to save money, you will be sorely disappointed.
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Old January 9, 2006, 11:28 AM   #11
azredhawk44
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Quote:
170 gr lee flat nose mould- $15
empty coffee can- free
hotplate or campstove from walmart $9-35
Lee .309" sizing die + liquid alox lube- $11
1000 .308 gaschecks -$18
Wheelweights- free if you ask the right people.
I have a little camp stove.
Can I use a tin can & pliers for my pot? Maybe an excuse to get one of those "Sapporo" japanese beer cans that are made of steel, and cut it in half?
I saw a Lee 113gr FP mould on Midway, and I am willing to play with other weights too. I would also like to experiment with casting for my .44, as I can't find a good source for heavy .44 slugs and I found a 310gr mould on Midway.
What's the sizing die for? Do they not come out right from the mould?
Why do tire stores give away wheelweights? How does lead go "bad" for them?
Can I use lead buckshot or something like that, or is it cheaper to buy lead ingots?
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Old January 9, 2006, 11:42 AM   #12
Mike Irwin
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"Can I use a tin can & pliers for my pot?"

NO! MOST EMPHATIC NO!

You need something heavy, either steel or cast iron, but NOT aluminum!
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Old January 9, 2006, 12:44 PM   #13
T. O'Heir
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"...able to hit 2500-2600fps..." Nope. That'll lead the bore. The highest velocity for a 120 grain cast with a gas check in my Lyman manual is 1913fps.
Wheel weights have all kinds of impurities in them. No big deal. You just have to skim it out when it floats to the top.
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Old January 9, 2006, 01:30 PM   #14
Mike Irwin
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"Wheel weights have all kinds of impurities in them."

Back when I used to cast I got a bucket of wheel weights at the local tire shop.

I was melting them over an open fire in a cast iron dutch oven and casting them into ingots.

As I was dumping some into the pot, I came across a bunch of bones...

Seems that the one guy had the habit of tossing his chicken legs into the bucket...
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Old January 9, 2006, 01:51 PM   #15
Poodleshooter
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Curious: How many folks have had good luck with the Lee 170gr FN gas checked cast design in Winchester 94's?
I have one that won't shoot for beans with jacketed bullets,so I thought I'd give rifle bullet casting a try.
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Old January 9, 2006, 03:23 PM   #16
cobra81
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Casting

Redhawk,
I'm currently casting two bullets for 30/06: Lyman 113gr. spitzer, and Lee 160 gr. RN, both gas-checked. The 113 grainers are not the best for accuracy. I use them in light loads under 2000 fps.
The 160's have a larger bearing surface, and are better suited to the '06 twist-rate in my Savage 110 (1 in 9.5").
My next mold is going to be 170gr. FN Lee for the 30-30.
I use an alloy of about 80%wheelweight/20% linotype and water-quench them as I'm casting. Don't have a Brinnell hardness tester, but I reckon they're around 25 on the Brinnell scale. Never had a leading problem with this alloy, but like I said, I stay under 2000 fps.

If you're gonna cast, this item from Midway is well worth $39: http://www.midwayusa.com/eproductpag...eitemid=637732
I've got this pot and it works great.

How do you get wheelweights free??? Tire shops and dealerships balance a LOT of tires, and the old wheelweights they take off usually go into a bucket by the balancing machine. If you know any mechanics or shop foremen at a tire shop or dealership, slip 'em a cold beverage of their choice on a hot day and you're on your way to scoring some free lead!
Got any old newspaper or print shops around? Most of them no longer set their own type, and many still have old linotype presses in the back room. It's worth asking! Linotype is my favorite alloy, and I use it straight, but also add it to wheelweight alloy to improve it's castability and add hardness.

As has already been noted by someone in this thread, casting is not necessarily the route to huge savings....nor laser-like accuracy. While you might save some $$ in the long run, start-up costs alone will lengthen your cost-recovery curve. Plus, I've never been able to get jacketed type accuracy from my cast bullets. The better reason to cast is why I do it: Because I enjoy it and get satisfaction from it!
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