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Old October 15, 2011, 08:21 AM   #1
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30-06, can you help a brother out?

I need to load up a few 30-06 rounds to test fire an old Springfield rifle. I'm looking for about 10~12 cases and bullets. Does anyone have a few peices of brass and bullets they are willing to part with? I'll pay a reasonable price and shipping.
Also, a little advice:
This rifle was built for the US military in 1928. At some point, it was turned into a WW2 sniper rifle replica. The barrel is in good condition, but not perfect. I'm not worried about the steel but the wood can crack under the strain of a full charge 30-06. How much can I reduce the powder charge by to test the rifle so that I don't put a lot of strain on it?
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Old October 15, 2011, 09:37 AM   #2
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PM me with your mailing address and I'll send you a hand full of once fired Military M-72 brass and M72 pulled 173 bullets.

As to the shooting of standard loaded '06 rounds in your Springfield, you're worrying too much about nothing. Your rifle was made well after the date of the weak actions (serial numbers under 800,000). If made in 1928 its well past that.

You have a strong action, you don't have to worry about your loads. If the stock fits properly, and the bedding screws are tight, you're stock wont be in any undue danger.

Now if one is worried about recoil, then you can load light rounds that would be easier on the shooter. Springfields shot in CMP GSM matches (the S stands for Springfield), are only shot at 200 yards, (or 100 depending on the range). At that range you don't need a lot of powder and velocity.

Hornady makes some good 110 grn SP bullets that work quite well. As to powder, I'd recommend 4895. Besides 4895 being developed for the 30-06, its one of the best powders for reduced loads in a 30-06/308 size case. It's consistent and accurate when down loaded.

I believe Gen Hatcher mentioned one time in one of his books that a 168-173 wight 308 was most accurate at 2200 fps. Of course that wont work the actions of many gas guns but he was talking about ISU (international) 300 meter shooting.

In my Springfield, 1917 Enfield and Garand, I often load 44 gns of 4895 pushing a 110 Hornady SP bullet for 100 yard practice. Its quite accurate in my guns, yet for some weird reason still works the action in my Garand.

If you decide to get into CMP GSM Vintage Military Rifle Gains you need to get a zero for standard 30-06 loads because ammo is often issued in these matches. You can get pretty close loading 46 grns of 4895 pushing a 168 SMK or Hornady A-max bullet. This wont hurt your gun.

You also need a zero for a load in case CMP surplus ammo is issued. 47 grns of 4895 and 150 grn bullets will get you there.

The targets used in CMP games has a 3.5 MOA X-10 ring, I'm not talking about sub minute loads here, you dont need them. It doesn't take a lot of effort to get a Sprindfield to shoot 3.5 MOA. Hard part is doing that standing on your hind legs. That takes a lot of dryfiring and practice. Light loads do come in handy here.

Visit the CMP forums, attend CMP GSM Clinics and Matches, talk to other shooters (and loaders) of the Springfield. I bet you'll find out you have nothing to worry about in shooting your Springfield.
Kraig Stuart
USAMU Sniper School Oct '78
Distinguished Rifle Badge 1071
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Old October 15, 2011, 10:51 AM   #3
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All pretty good advice. Your 1928 Springfield receiver, as long as it's in good condition, will handle anything safe in any other .30-06. If you have your choice of powders there are advantages in bulk density to some over 4895, but none are more versatile. It was developed for the Garand specifically during WW II (IIRC, 1942 was its introduction), but does well with a wide range of bullet weights and loading densities in any .30-06. Hodgdon's H4895 is a little faster and they claim it does even better on reduced loads, though I've not verified that personally. There are so many variables in performance and accuracy that I take all claims that one component is better than another with a grain of salt until I see it in my own guns. Too often what is true for one gun is not true in another.

With 150 grain bullets and down, Vihtavuori N133, with its lowish energy density, is bulkier and a bit cleaner burning. With 168-180 grain bullets, a lot of shooters prefer IMR 4064 or Varget, again in part due to greater bulk. But stick with the IMR 4895 until you find your load range and bullets. You can always do load tweaking later to see if you can make an improvement or not.
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