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Thread: 30-30 600 yard build

  1. #1
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    30-30 600 yard build

    Some of you may have seen the post from Nez Rongero in Lee's thread on Lederer barrels. When Nez first contacted me concerning building a 30-30 for 600 yards, he told me his goal was to push a 168gr. Berger Hybrid at 2800 fps. I told him that 2700 fps. was more of a guarantee, but 2800 fps. may be more than possible. For this build, we will be using a 28" Lederer barrel in 12" twist. The case will be headspaced on the rim to .001" or less. As usual, you don't need to bump the shoulder on the 30-30, so we are also headspacing off of the shoulder.

    Over the past few days, I have had the chance to rebarrel a Ruger #1 that I haven't shot for about 12 years. I decided this would be the perfect opportunity to run some test. I installed a 12" twist Lederer barrel and crowned it at 28". I ran my zero freebore 30-30 benchrest reamer, and then followed that with a throater for .120" freebore. This barrel has a 1" barrel thread, and I don't feel that the Ruger action can handle pressure quite as well as my bolt actions, but it is close.

    Early testing shows success with velocities, but having trouble reaching a maximum pressure with RL15 and 168gr Berger Hybrids.

    RL15 - 37.0gr. - 2626 fps.
    RL15 - 38.0gr. - 2712 fps.
    RL15 - 39.0gr. - 2751 fps. (out of room in case)

    Maybe H4895 would get there before I run out of room. The only thing is that I'm not sure if H4895 will deliver the kind of velocities that RL15 does before reaching maximum pressure. Maybe a ball powder is the key. Maybe I would have reached maximum pressure at a higher temperature. After all, this testing was done at 31 degrees. Not sure if a Fed 215 primer would be good for accuracy, but might add 50 fps. Maybe 8208XBR is the ticket.

    This Ruger # 1 will be my way of taking game out to 600 yards with a 30-30. Over 1300 foot lbs. at 600 yards is possible with the 180gr. Elite Hunter.

    If anyone has a suggestion for a better powder choice, I'm listening.

    Michael
    Last edited by mturner; 01-25-2019 at 02:39 PM.

  2. #2
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    rl16

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by retired View Post
    rl16
    Can you explain why RL16 would work better? It is a slower powder. Is it way more dense? Looking for faster burn rate than RL15.

    Michael

  4. #4
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    Imr 8208 xbr

    During lunch I decided to try the 8208. Velocity was great, but I did start running out of room on my last load. The same case was used over and over. The last load has not caused any change in primer seating effort. Same Berger 168gr. Hybrid bullets.

    35.0 - 2577 fps.
    37.0 - 2695 fps.
    38.0 - 2757 fps.
    39.0 - 2804 fps.

    I like how the velocity increase per grain for this powder is fairly consistent as the load increases. The RL15 was not giving good velocity gains as I increased the load when i began to run out of room.

    Would be nice if I could loosen the primer just a tad, and then back down a grain or so. I may test Benchmark later.

    Michael
    Last edited by mturner; 01-25-2019 at 04:54 PM.

  5. #5
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    I believe that you and Nez will have fun.

  6. #6
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    Nez

    Quote Originally Posted by Butch Lambert View Post
    I believe that you and Nez will have fun.
    Nez is one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. I traveled to Austin, TX back around Thanksgiving. We did some velocity testing on the 30-30 with his brother's Labradar, and learned something. The 118's chronographed just fine, and we took them up to around 3300 fps. Then we decided to try some of the 168's. What we learned is that the Labradar will not acquire the velocity of a tumbling bullet. The 168's tumbled so quickly out of the 18" twist barrel the the radar kept giving errors.

    Here's the thing. Nez gave me 16 pounds of powder, just for showing up and going over the project with him. Years ago, Charles Huckeba borrowed a couple of my posi-locked scopes to use at the Super Shoot. He had Frank Wilson return the scopes to me along with 16 pounds of IMR4198. Fine people in this sport.

    Michael

  7. #7
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    Michael, Nez and his wife, Bona, are great friends of my wife and I. They are terrific people. Working on a project with him is a pleasure.

  8. #8
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    i have none, but have heard good things about 16 over 15.
    i have done 25 and 26 and can tell you 26 provides velocity with no large pressure increases.
    ( i am doing 2900+ in a 26.5" bbl in 300 win mag plus with a 230 berger)
    like more kj/kg without pressure...maybe longer burn.

    Quote Originally Posted by mturner View Post
    Can you explain why RL16 would work better? It is a slower powder. Is it way more dense? Looking for faster burn rate than RL15.

    Michael

  9. #9
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    More Testing

    I just finished testing five more powders. Most of these powders were running out of case room. Three powders have managed to reach 2800 fps. by the time they were close to all I could get in the case. All of these loads tested, including the above test, have been tested using a single brass case. Some of the slower powders developed velocities just as high as the faster burning powders. I believe this is due to the 28" barrel length, and the faster powders having a quicker drop in pressure. The temperature for today's testing was 39 degrees. For anyone who is attempting to use the 30-30 at long range with these loads, work loads up with extreme caution, especially at higher temperatures. I normally see .001" or less case stretch per firing in my bolt guns. In the Ruger, I am seeing .002" case stretch per firing. This is more than I like to see, and could result in a case head separation at around 30 firings. This is not much of a concern if you just stay on top of it. Another thing to remember is that 30-30 brass is only around .40 per piece. As before, all testing was done with the Berger 168 gr. Hybrid.


    Benchmark
    38.0 - 2737
    39.0 - 2802


    WW748
    39.0 - 2648
    41.0 - 2753
    42.0 - 2799


    VV133
    36.0 - 2692
    37.0 - 2753


    H4895
    38.0 - 2726


    IMR4320
    38.0 - 2660
    39.0 - 2739
    40.0 - 2778

    Michael
    Last edited by mturner; 01-26-2019 at 06:56 PM.

  10. #10
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    Michael,

    Thank you for the update. 2800 would be great for mid range. I have shot the 168s out to 1000 yards with my M1a at that velocity with great results. At that velocity it is equal or better than the 155s out of a Palma gun. Saw that at the last 1000 yard match I shot. I was shooting next to a Palma shooter and we both got burned by a quick reversal from the left as we simultaneously broke our shots --- netted us 8s. However, a good friend, a TX shooter who won the President's Hundred at Perry in 2016, shot his 20 inch AR 10 at the 2018 NRA Long Range Nationals in Indiana and set a service rifle National record with the 168 Hybrids coming at around 2735. In fact in the first match of the long range championship, he posted 200-15. The 168 Hybrids will shoot at the distance.

    For mid range anywhere between 2700 and 2800 with the best precision would be the ticket.

    For powder, the 2000 MR might get to the velocity easier than the other ones. I also have Swiss powder that is close to the burn rate of 8208, and maybe slightly faster I can try later on.

    There are a couple state service rifle team shooters who are much better sling shooters than I can muster will give the rifle a good test drive at the mid range matches.

    We will set a big commotion on the firing line.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by NezRongero View Post
    Michael,

    Thank you for the update. 2800 would be great for mid range. I have shot the 168s out to 1000 yards with my M1a at that velocity with great results. At that velocity it is equal or better than the 155s out of a Palma gun. Saw that at the last 1000 yard match I shot. I was shooting next to a Palma shooter and we both got burned by a quick reversal from the left as we simultaneously broke our shots --- netted us 8s. However, a good friend, a TX shooter who won the President's Hundred at Perry in 2016, shot his 20 inch AR 10 at the 2018 NRA Long Range Nationals in Indiana and set a service rifle National record with the 168 Hybrids coming at around 2735. In fact in the first match of the long range championship, he posted 200-15. The 168 Hybrids will shoot at the distance.

    For mid range anywhere between 2700 and 2800 with the best precision would be the ticket.

    For powder, the 2000 MR might get to the velocity easier than the other ones. I also have Swiss powder that is close to the burn rate of 8208, and maybe slightly faster I can try later on.

    There are a couple state service rifle team shooters who are much better sling shooters than I can muster will give the rifle a good test drive at the mid range matches.

    We will set a big commotion on the firing line.

    Nez, your old buddies will be apoplectic!

  12. #12
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    Nez

    Here is the test you've been waiting for. I know your goal with the 2000MR is 2800 fps. It may be possible, but what I'm seeing is that the powder is a little on the slow side. However, the velocity reached was very close. With that said, the conditions must be noted, and who knows how it would compare with possibly more favorable conditions. The highest charge weight I could reach was 44 gr. by trickling into a funnel very slowly. You might do a fair amount better with a long drop tube. The temperature was 38 degrees, and it was sprinkling, but the test altitude is 8600 ft. Lower altitudes will slow the bullet, but higher temperatures will raise it. As you were hoping for, the pressures were not as high as most other powders tested according to the primer. I have attached a photo of the primer. Notice that there is still a small radius around the firing pin strike. That photo is of the the 44 gr. load and 2769 fps. with the Berger 168 gr. Hybrid. This powder and velocity do show a lot of promise. It is certainly enough velocity to get the job done if this load is in tune.

    42.0 gr. - 2695 fps.
    44.0 gr. - 2769 fps.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by mturner; 02-03-2019 at 07:45 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mturner View Post
    Here is the test you've been waiting for. I know your goal with the 2000MR is 2800 fps. It may be possible, but what I'm seeing is that the powder is a little on the slow side. However, the velocity reached was very close. With that said, the conditions must be noted, and who knows how it would compare with possibly more favorable conditions. The highest charge weight I could reach was 44 gr. by trickling into a funnel very slowly. You might do a fair amount better with a long drop tube. The temperature was 38 degrees, and it was sprinkling, but the test altitude is 8600 ft. Lower altitudes will slow the bullet, but higher temperatures will raise it. As you were hoping for, the pressures were not as high as most other powders tested according to the primer. I have attached a photo of the primer. Notice that there is still a small radius around the firing pin strike. That photo is of the the 44 gr. load and 2769 fps. with the Berger 168 gr. Hybrid. This powder and velocity do show a lot of promise. It is certainly enough velocity to get the job done if this load is in tune.

    42.0 gr. - 2695 fps.
    44.0 gr. - 2769 fps.
    Michael, there is still a considerable radius around the outside perimeter of that primer. Looks like you might need a powder with a quicker pressure spike.

    How about one of the Vv high energy powders. N530 just might be the ticket. Itís in the same burn rate field as 4895, but will yield 100 FPS more velocity at (seemingly) the same load characteristics.

    I have 5 one pounders. I will send you one to try if you like.
    Last edited by jackie schmidt; 02-03-2019 at 08:20 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mturner View Post
    Here is the test you've been waiting for. I know your goal with the 2000MR is 2800 fps. It may be possible, but what I'm seeing is that the powder is a little on the slow side. However, the velocity reached was very close. With that said, the conditions must be noted, and who knows how it would compare with possibly more favorable conditions. The highest charge weight I could reach was 44 gr. by trickling into a funnel very slowly. You might do a fair amount better with a long drop tube. The temperature was 38 degrees, and it was sprinkling, but the test altitude is 8600 ft. Lower altitudes will slow the bullet, but higher temperatures will raise it. As you were hoping for, the pressures were not as high as most other powders tested according to the primer. I have attached a photo of the primer. Notice that there is still a small radius around the firing pin strike. That photo is of the the 44 gr. load and 2769 fps. with the Berger 168 gr. Hybrid. This powder and velocity do show a lot of promise. It is certainly enough velocity to get the job done if this load is in tune.

    42.0 gr. - 2695 fps.
    44.0 gr. - 2769 fps.
    Michael,

    Thank you. At that velocity, if in tune would be sufficiently competitive for mid range.

    The 2000 MR, from my experience, can give good velocity before it hits the pressure ceiling, but a sJackie noted, the the VV high energy might be the excellent alternative due to the somewhat limited case capacity. I have used N540, but no experience with N530.

    Where we normally shoot mid and long range is at the Juliff range of Bayou Rifles, south of Houston, my guess the elevation most likely is under 100 feet, but we all know how the temperature could be like by mid year.

    Thank you again for all the work.


    nez

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackie schmidt View Post
    Michael, there is still a considerable radius around the outside perimeter of that primer. Looks like you might need a powder with a quicker pressure spike.

    How about one of the Vv high energy powders. N530 just might be the ticket. Itís in the same burn rate field as 4895, but will yield 100 FPS more velocity at (seemingly) the same load characteristics.

    I have 5 one pounders. I will send you one to try if you like.
    Jackie,

    I'm thinking the same thing, although the velocities have already exceeded the 2700 fps. mark. Nez would like to see 2800 fps at the lowest pressure possible. If he can get 1 extra grain of the 2000 MR in the case with a drop tube, he would get there. I saw great performance out of W748 as far as pressure and velocity were concerned, but have never cared for the temperature sensitivity of double base powders (especially 748). Maybe N530 is the key. If you sent a pound, wouldn't there be hazmat fees? I hate to be a burden of any type to anyone. There is a chance that Nez would be able to get it from you when in the Houston area, and test it in his rifle. If I found a good balance between the throat depth between the 168 gr. and 185 gr. Hybrids, I know it would start building pressure with the 185's. At the same time, I would need to switch from a 12" twist to an 11" twist, but still time to go that route if needed. I'm also considering AA2460. The IMR8208 also hit 2800 fps. and looks fair on the pressure, but not as low as the 2000 MR. I personally do not believe that we should use the most efficient powder as an excuse to try to hit velocities over 2800 fps., but instead just use them to lower pressures. While the pressures still look pretty low, I'm running 308 and 30-06 velocities, so the pressures can't be very low. I have not mounted a scope on this rifle, so up to this point, nothing has gone on paper.

    Michael

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