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Old November 11, 2018, 06:29 PM   #1
mgulino
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HP-38 in 30-30?

I have a knock-off Mossberg M464 in 30-30 that I want to load light to introduce my grandson (8) to shooting a lever gun. I have several .308 caliber projectiles on hand: some 110 gr M1 Carbine round nose, 130 gr Speer HP, 150 gr Hornady RN, and 170 gr Speer FP.

I have used my books to load all of these using IMR 3031 and have gotten good results. 30 grains of 3031 gave me 2230 fps with the 110 gr RN, 30.5 grains of 3031 gave me 2220 fps with the 130 gr Speer. These were accurate and pleasant for me to shoot; but probably have too much recoil for my grandson. I’m still working up loads for the 150/170 grain bullets.

I have read several online forums about light loads of fast pistol powders (Unique, Red dot, HP-38, etc) in a 30-30 with 110 -130 grain bullets. Are these powders position sensitive in a 30-30 case (considerably more volume in the rifle case)? Does some sort of filling or wading become necessary (or even possible)? I have HP-38 on hand; what would be a good starting load for a 110gr RN?
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Old November 11, 2018, 06:46 PM   #2
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The 110 grain bullet and about 10 grains of HP-38 will work for kids. Put a small tuft of polyester pillow ticking over the powder to hold it back over the flash hole, as this powder is only filling the case about 30% and that's on the edge of hazardous if you let it rattle around in the case.

For the future, try to buy them some Trail Boss powder. It is about 1/3 the density of HP-38 will fill the case and get similar velocities.
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Old November 11, 2018, 09:29 PM   #3
mgulino
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Since I haven't begun light-loading 30-30 yet, I can start with Trail Boss. Would TB have the same 10 gr starting point?

From the Hodgdon site:
"Find where the base of the bullet to be loaded is located in the case and make a mark on the outside of the case at this location. Then fill the case to that mark with Trail Boss, pour into the scale pan and weigh. This is your
maximum load. Pressures will be below the maximum allowed for this cartridge and perfectly safe to use!"

I plan on weighing this charge, reducing to 70% for a starting load, and working up from there. I have also read to never compress a load of TB in any cartridge.

Last edited by mgulino; November 12, 2018 at 10:46 AM.
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Old November 12, 2018, 11:13 AM   #4
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Sounds like your bullets are jacketed, but a 110 LRN (lead carbine bullets) over 6.5 grains of Trail Boss gives about 1200 fps as is deadly accurate in my single shot Handi. Feels like a 22 mag.
Jacketed would take a slightly higher charge, So I would think 8 or 10 grains would be a safe minimum.
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Old November 12, 2018, 03:39 PM   #5
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https://www.marlinowners.com/forum/r...s-30-30-a.html

Try it now.

Last edited by Hammerhead; November 13, 2018 at 05:10 PM.
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Old November 13, 2018, 02:31 PM   #6
mgulino
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Thanks, Hammerhead, but I get a "webpage cannot be found" error when trying to follow your link.

I did make some TB weight/volume measurements yesterday using a dummy round. I estimated that a full case (powder to just under a seated bullet) of uncompressed TB weighs just over 12 grains. I reduced that full load to 12 gr just to be safe. I then calculated a 70% charge at 8.4 grains and made several rounds at 8.5, 9.0, 9.5, and 10.0 grains each.

I am using a Berry plated 110 grain round nose seated to a COL of 2.480. Cases were trimmed to 2.030. Medium crimp.

Hopefully, I can get to a range soon and try them out.
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Old November 13, 2018, 04:29 PM   #7
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Hammerhead,

You put some kind of odd double-partial link up. It's broken. Find the page. Click in the browser address bar to get the address highlighted, then copy it (right-click the mouse and select copy or us Ctrl+C for a Windows keyboard). Come back to this page. Click to edit your post. Delete the bad link and then click on the little globe and infinity symbol at the top. A flyout window with "http//" comes up. Delete the :http//" and paste the saved address into it, and then click "OK". You should be good to go.
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Old November 14, 2018, 07:23 AM   #8
mgulino
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Thanks for reposting the link. I had actually already found that site and read through those threads before posting here. Because those posts were almost 9 years old, I thought I would ask here anyway.
Haven't been to the range yet, but will post results.
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Old November 14, 2018, 05:55 PM   #9
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I've been shooting gallery loads in 30-30. .308 Win. and 30-06 for years. My load is 5.0 gr. of Unique and cast bullets running anywhere from 100 gr. to 120 gr. with success. After dispensing the powder I take a piece of toilet paper cut int four squares and lightly tamp the square over the powder, then seat the bullet. One question you have to answer is will the load feed from the magazine? Funny thing but a Winchester M94 or 64 will not feed 100 gr. bullets from the magazine and are sometimes iffy with the 115 gr. bullets. The one that worked all the time was a 120 gr. round nose designed for the M-1 Carbine. The Marlin 336 still balks at the 100 gr. but has fed well with the 115 and 120 gr. bullets. The way the feed elevator works is different from the M94 Winchester. Dunno how the Mossberg feeds so you'll have to tinker with cartridge length to see what works.
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Old November 15, 2018, 07:03 AM   #10
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Paul B.
Thanks for the information. Experience is a great teacher...even if from someone else.
I did load the dummy round with the 110gr RN in the magazine and cycle the action. Fed well into the chamber and extracted fine. Just need to see how the shoot now.
For your TP trick. Do you start with one square and cut it into 4 smaller squares? I'm guessing single-ply? I'm working with Trail Boss now, so no need, but I may try HP-38 or Unique later.
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Old December 15, 2018, 11:18 AM   #11
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Finally made it to the range yesterday to try out my gallery loads with TB. I had made several rounds at 8.5, 9.0, 9.5, and 10.0 grains each. The weather was nasty so I didn't setup the chrono; I really just wanted to check felt recoil and accuracy.

I used a Berry plated 110 grain round nose seated to a COL of 2.480 with a medium crimp. Cases were trimmed to 2.030. Shooting at 25 yards, the 9.0 grain load grouped the best. Very light recoil and shooting to point of aim.

I did get several failure to fire rounds. Recocked the hammer, and they fired the second try. I checked those fired cases in a case length gage, and they fit fine. I also had a couple that I could not close the action on. Again, checking those rounds in a case length gage showed no problems.

Any ideas why that would happen?
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Old December 15, 2018, 01:15 PM   #12
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Most likely the primers were not seated to the bottom of the pocket
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Old December 15, 2018, 01:38 PM   #13
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That's the most common cause. ideally, you seat until you feel the anvil feet touch the bottom of the pocket, then force it another three thousandths or so. It amounts to seating pretty hard.

Cases that fit the case gauge not chambering can be several things. One is unburned powder in the chamber getting in the way. Another is that you checked the case before loading, but crimped too hard and created a slight bulge. Another is inconsistent seating depth, and the bullet was sticking out too far. If you don't think it is any of those, mark one of the difficult cartridges all over with a Magic Marker, try to chamber it and withdraw it to find where the scuff marks in the ink are. That's your trouble spot, so measure the case there.
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Old December 15, 2018, 08:26 PM   #14
mgulino
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I measured the case necks with the bullets still seated and compared against a round that would chamber. They were both the same diameter.
I marked a bullet and case neck with a sharpie and tried to chamber the round. There were no marks on the bullet or case neck.
I then pulled the bullets and tried to chamber just the empty case. It would not chamber. So, I resized and moved the shoulder back a bit. I could then chamber an empty case, so I loaded them back up, ensuring the primers were seated correctly. Fully loaded rounds chambered correctly. I'll try them at the range tomorrow.
Thanks for your suggestions.
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Old December 17, 2018, 05:56 PM   #15
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It was a great day at the range yesterday.

The TB loads in 30-30 gave me 1441 - 1466 fps for 10 shots. Very little recoil, similar to a 22 Magnum and accurate enough at 50 yards. They sure were fun to shoot, and I think the grandson will enjoy the experience.

I also shot some 9mm (several loads) and 45ACP. That's what made it a great day...because I still have all my fingers and both eyes. Had a case head separation on shot 24 with the 45. I had worked up this load, 7.4 grains of LongShot under a 200 grain XTP RN, and had previously fired about 40 rounds at another range trip.

The force bulged out the grip on one side and exploded the magazine. There does not appear to be any other damage to the gun, and I am having it checked by a competent smith. I am also pulling the remainder of these loads to check powder weights.

Rethinking my process to ensure correct powder weights and no double drops.
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