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Old November 11, 2010, 12:15 PM   #1
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Venturing above manuals load info; M1 Garand

I have been researching through old posts on M1 Garand loading, and a recurring number keeps coming up using IMR4064 powder and 168gr. bullets. I see 48.0gr of powder being listed repeatedly.

Now, the Hornady 7th Ed. states a max. load of 47.2gr.

Is the discrepancy due to a different COL (3.28" in the Hornady manual)? Perhaps those who load w/ 48.0gr are loading to the standard COL of 3.34"?

I'm a bit reluctant to go shoot some cartridges loaded past the Hornady max., but would 0.8gr bring any more danger? I'm still a bit green on rifle loading...
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Old November 11, 2010, 01:03 PM   #2
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As with anything in life, you can do anything you want, right or wrong. Many years ago when I started loading I played around with some very hot loads, but I was one of the lucky ones, I never blew anything up. I like to use Elmer Keith as an example. He was very famous for the work he did in reloading, shooting and casting; something else he was also known for was destroying some nice guns, with over pressure loads.
I would strongly advice staying within current published load data. Over the years I have found two things to be fact. One my most accurate loads are not max loads, and with fact one in mind, why waste components and beat up a gun on sub-pare loads.
I am not saying there is no place for the hot loads; some competition and hunting loads are near max. But in shooting a 70-year-old M1, I would take it easy on the old boy. And yes the deeper you seat the bullet the more you increase the pressure.
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Old November 11, 2010, 02:59 PM   #3
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The M1 Garand is a special case when considering going beyond max charge weights in a manual. You don't want to beat up the op rod and receiver. It is not designed to handle the full range of loads for which the SAAMI .30-06 cartridge is rated.

You don't want to rely on other loading data, no matter how ubiquitous, if you don't have all the info for it (OAL, tuned gas ports, primers used, etc.).

The Garand is the last rifle I would venture beyond the manual with. Look around at other manuals or load data that gives more complete info on the other factors.

I will say the Hornady data for the M1 Carbine is misleadingly low. I followed the manual and using a starting or in-between charge of W296 would not cycle the action properly. I even bought a new spring, re-cleaned and lubed it very carefully. Finally I found like you did, lots of recommendations from other handloaders; for exactly 15.0 gr of W296 as being the original military load. Hornady listed I think 14.9 gr as max. Checking with other manuals, I worked up test loads and sure enough right at 15.0 gr everything worked perfectly. 14.8 did not cut it at all and 14.9 was almost there. I've never experienced such a sensitive action before.
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Old November 11, 2010, 03:40 PM   #4
Tim R
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I would not load a load which is over the limits of a manuel with out first workng up to the load. I think you will find the M-1, in my case anyways with 2 service grades, a correct grade and a field grade, the M-1 can shoot very well with medium loads. For paper punching I use 46.7 grs of IMR 4064 in a GI case using a CCI LR primer with a 155 SMK on top. Easy on the rifle, the brass and will hit the X ring at 600 yards if I do my part.
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Old November 11, 2010, 06:17 PM   #5
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In the for-what-it's-worth column, QuickLoad says....

30-06 Spr (SAAMI)
24" barrel
COAL: 3.34"
Case Capacity: 68.2gr H2O (My Greek HXP brass is 70.6)
Chamber Press: 46,443psi for 2,631fps

My Hornady(6th) says IMR4064/47.2gr at 2,600fps (QL says 2,592fps)
I'm shooting 47.0gr for 2,550fps (QL predicted 2,583fps @ 44,000psi)

YMMV..., but 48.0gr for 46.4K psi doesn't sound too stressful.
(...and 4064 vice 4895 for the same velocity actually has a slightly lower muzzle/OpRod pressure)
Load it where it shoots for you, though, not where it's necessarily max'd out.
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