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Old October 27, 2012, 03:21 PM   #1
pelo801
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ruger 30 carbine

looking for some info on this pistol. kind of intrigues me. if you own one, how does it shoot? reload for it? and with what? i almost bought one at a gun show a few weeks ago. the guy was claiming a big flash and velocity about 1800 fps. it sounded like a lot of fun. is it really a decently priced (ammo and gun together) plinker.
also wondering, is this a rimmed cartridges? so moon clips are not needed? or how does extraction work? basically any info would be cool to know.
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Old October 27, 2012, 03:56 PM   #2
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A friend of mine has one; he let me shoot it. It's a heavy gun so the recoil is surprisingly negligible. There is indeed a fair amount of muzzle flash; it's something of a flamethrower.

There's no moon clips; as a SA revolver with a loading port, there'd be no way to use them. Empties punched right out.
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Old October 27, 2012, 04:04 PM   #3
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I own one, 7 1/2" barrel, bought it new in 1973. It's committed as a trade, but I'm not unhappy with it - just one of the guns I haven't shot in a long time. To answer your questions:

Yes, it has a big flash. That is because the powder in a standard round is designed to burn in a much longer carbine barrel, so there's this big 'ol flame out the end when you fire. The barrel length also makes for more blast (roar), so be sure to wear hearing protection. It's a waker-upper at an indoor range. Recoil is very manageable. I haven't chrono'd mine, so can't testify to velocity but presume it's reasonably quick for an unusual combination like that. However, it should also be noticeably less than out of the carbine for which the mil-spec round was designed.

The cases are rimless, designed for a semi-automatic carbine. They feed into the cylinder in the same way .45ACPs feed into a conversion cylinder in a .45 Colt Blackhawk. No moon clips are involved and wouldn't be even close to practical in a single-action revolver, since you'd have to remove the entire cylinder each time. Extraction is by using the ejection rod, one case at a time.

As for reloading, it should be possible. I had been thinking about getting into it were I not trading the gun. With all the information on the Net today, it shouldn't be too difficult to find some load data that will get you to a combination you like, particularly if you can work into a powder that burns more fully before the bullet exits the barrel. I'd first try asking in the handloading section here at the Firing Line.
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Old October 27, 2012, 06:48 PM   #4
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Intriguing hand gun, ill say thanks as well
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Old October 27, 2012, 07:58 PM   #5
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Had one and sold it.It made the loudest sharpest noise I ever heard.I just didnt like the single action setup
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Old October 27, 2012, 09:48 PM   #6
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Several years ago I was contemplating buying one. Like you, they intrigued me. I had a couple of carbines that I was shooting and thought that it would make a dandy match. Had loads of ammo on hand and I reloaded. Borrowed one from a friend for a day ( I noticed he had a sly smile when he handed it to me ).Took it to the desert, fired a box of ammo through it and brought it home, cleaned it, returned it and gave up the ideal. Very unconfortable sharp recoil. loud as a cannon and with as much flash. That's just me. you may very well like it.
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Old October 27, 2012, 11:26 PM   #7
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I don't see why............. This would have been a good idea in the pre-80s< because of the m1a1. Not many m1a1's to be found/shooting. 30caliber isn't cheap. It does remind me of the ar/ak pistols though, due to the "rifle" caliber its in.
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Old October 28, 2012, 12:14 AM   #8
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...on the Blackhawk frame. I had one in the early 70's when I was in college. I didn't like the feel, the expense of the ammo, or the sharp slap against my hand of a revolver. Traded it in for a Beretta .22 automatic with great balance, almost no recoil, and cheap ammo. Later, in the Marines, I became proficient with the .45 ACP. It was a much more comfortable weapon. There is more recoil with the .45 but it's not delivered as a sharp palm slap due to the action spreading the force out over that added fraction of a second.

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Old October 28, 2012, 07:44 AM   #9
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I have one and its among the most accurate revolvers I own with any ammo (Colt Python class). I know a guy who hunts deer with it successfully.

Corbon now makes .30 Carbine DPX which would be a great hunting or defense round for it. You can also get modern generic ammo for it for about the same as a box of cheap generic .357 ammo.

Yes its loud. Wear hearing protection. You can say that about any handgun.

Last edited by kcub; October 28, 2012 at 07:51 AM.
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Old October 28, 2012, 04:02 PM   #10
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If you are talking the Ruger Blackhawk in .30 carbine, it is a single action revolver. You will load one round at a time as you rotate the cylinder. No moon clips involved. I like the round, but the Ruger Blackhawk I find a PITA. I find I need to rub a very small amount of lube on the cartridge before loading them to make it easy to extract. Otherwise cartridges tend to stick in my Blackhawk's cylinders after discharge compelling me to have to remove the cylinder and pound the empty case out with a wood dowel and mallet. I also experience the housing for the ejection rod rotating sometimes which then causes all sorts of headaches unloading an empty case. I reload 110 grain JSP bullets using Alliant 2400. I like the revolver for hunting coyote and other small critters. It makes a nice companion for my M1 Carbine.

A nice review: http://hunting.about.com/od/guns/l/aastruger30bh.htm
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Old October 28, 2012, 11:44 PM   #11
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Hook - great link - thanks for posting it. Crum, reading it makes me want to keep the 'ol hand cannon. But I'll bet my tradee friend is reading this!

Pelo801 - just received a Midway flyer and Magtech jacketed bullets for the 30 Carbine, 110 gr. FMJ (the general consensus best weight) is $20 per 100 bullets, to give you a rough feel for cost. There are preferable bullets, noted in Hook's linked article, but reloading sounds easy.

With the way the transfer bars work, my personal preference in primers for this revolver would be the softer Federals.
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Old October 29, 2012, 04:38 AM   #12
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You don't have to put up with transfer bars locking up the revolver. I don't. All my Rugers are old models.
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Old October 29, 2012, 10:11 AM   #13
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.30 Carbine Blackhawk

I like it, alot. It's a great coyote gun. I load mine with 110gr JSPs, JHPs and 90gr XTPs. Yes, it is loud, but I just make sure that I have ear muffs with me. I live in cattle country and have alot of opportunity to take coyotes while driving on gravel roads; I keep hearing protection on the dash or seat of my truck.

As for being a "flamethrower"; some loads have more muzzle flash than others. It is entertaining when shooting at dusk though.

As others have said, it has a very mild recoil and is a fun gun to shoot. I scoped mine because a scope increases the range that I am confident taking shots at. I want a clean kill, even when shooting coyotes.

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Old October 29, 2012, 10:29 AM   #14
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It's a fun gun to shoot and extremely accurate. It's exceedingly loud, but that's part of its charm. Kind of a pain to reload for because you have to trim the cases. And I really should polish the chambers in mine because the fired cases wedge in tightly and are hard to eject -- that's with handloads or most brands of factory ammo.

I've chronographed it with 100 grain cast bullets at just over 1700 fps; maybe why it shoots so flat.

Since I inherited a .41 Magnum Blackhawk and bought a .357 Security Six, I don't shoot the .30 much.
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Old October 29, 2012, 01:43 PM   #15
feets
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I love mine. It's a dandy little single action. No problems with stuck cases in my 2 year old gun. I really wish I had bought it sooner.
There is a sharp loud bang but the recoil is no different than a 38 special. Mine is a favorite range toy.
The gun is easy to shoot and the low recoil helps with tighter groups.
I do reload but also bought a 1000 round case of Aguila from AIM Surplus for $300.
I say do it! If for some silly reason you don't like it, sell it and get something else.
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Old October 31, 2012, 09:44 PM   #16
pelo801
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thanks for the replies. i'm really leaning towards one of these. from what most are saying it seems like something that would be right up my alley. big blast, recoil not to sharp, accurate, sounds fun to me.
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Old November 1, 2012, 12:50 PM   #17
damienph
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pelo801, you should get one. They really are fun to shoot. I suspect that most who don't like them have never owned one.
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Old November 1, 2012, 08:57 PM   #18
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At one time there were a lot of these for sale as used guns: often with histories of having fired one or two multiples of six rounds. Most people who own a .30 Carbine revolver will, if honest, admit that they seldom shoot it.

Virtually all carbine ammo is full power, since it is designed to function the action of a gas-operated semi-auto carbine. (The pretty much standard load is a 110-grain RN FMJ over 13 - 13.5 grains of H110.) They are flame-throwers, primarily because of the comparatively slow burning propellant. Ballistics are akin to a full power .357 Magnum.

In addition to muzzle blast, marginal accuracy, limited range (the 110-grain RN FMJ is not very efficient ballistically), and cost of ammo, most folks find extraction of fired cases difficult.
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Old November 1, 2012, 09:18 PM   #19
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I have one and really enjoy shooting it. Most folks shoot factory carbine ammo and thus the flash and blast. Just too much slow burning powder to burn in 7.5 inches of barrel.

If you are finding your brass sticking in the chamber, it just means your pressures are high.

I used to load 110 gr. soft points driven by H110 powder. But since the bullets are expensive, I switched over to lead. I have lots of data on lead loads that use mid burn rate handgun powders. It is a joy to shoot and extremely accurate. I did have to open the throats up. I also smoothed the action and took some of the travel out of the trigger take up. It is my favorite new model Blackhawk.

If you handload, pay attention to case length. Since it headspaces off the mouth of the case, you need to keep the length within the specs. Otherwise you can have misfires if the cases are short, or if they are long it can cause the cylinder to hang up during rotation. And make sure your crimp only closes the flare.

Some folks use 32-20 brass in them. You just need to trim them for the first firing.
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Old November 1, 2012, 10:23 PM   #20
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I have an original and a transfer bar model. I like the original better. They are fun to shoot, but you must give the rod an authoritative slap to get the spent casings out. I've found them to be quite accurate up to around 50 yards if I'm resting on a bean bag, but still good freehand out to about 20 yards.
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Old November 2, 2012, 11:06 PM   #21
pelo801
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ok, so i broke down and picked one up. i found one on the local classifieds. i looked up the serial #, it's an older one from '74. hopefully i will be able to shoot her this weekend.
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Old November 3, 2012, 12:16 AM   #22
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On my short list
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Old November 3, 2012, 12:59 AM   #23
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Jepp2 - I was thinking about loading lead bullets for mine. Do you mind passing on your powder and grains/load? Also thought about searching for plated bullets, but I suppose there's not a great demand for those.

As for functioning, if I keep the gun I will write to Cylinder and Slide about getting the cylinder tweaked, unless anyone here has a cheaper and/or more efficient gunsmith to recommend for the work. It is a strange gun - much like a strange woman that you can't quite get out of your mind.
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Old November 3, 2012, 01:01 AM   #24
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Pelo801 - wow - you must live in a big city, to find one that nice and that easily. Congrats.
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Old November 3, 2012, 01:17 AM   #25
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A Ruger .30 Carbine thread that's been open for more than 6 days, and Sevens hasn't replied yet?
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