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Thread: Lyman 31141 .30-30 OAL?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Lyman 31141 .30-30 OAL?

    Today I had a chance to test these bullets for the first time over 8 grains of Unique. I got a really great group, but they are a bit hard to close in my pre-64 94 Winchester action when crimped at the top groove. I have these sized at .311, and lubed with Alox. I think I will need to experiment with seating these deeper in the case, would appreciate any comments.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master MOA's Avatar
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    What was the case COL? Are all your cases the same length. If case's are a little long and then crimped on crimp grove and your chamber leade may be very short being a Winchester. I would make sure all brass is trimmed at the min spec'd trim to length, less than max load, a non compressed powder charge. See if that doesn't allow you to chamber the cartridges easier.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master gnostic's Avatar
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    My bullets drop from the mold at .309 and that's what I size at. They shoot great with zero leading, at speeds close to 2000fps.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I no longer have any '94 .30-30s, but, as I recall, at least one that I had required neck-turning the brass if using .311" bullets. Don't think I had to do that with .309" or .310" bullets. Neck thickness probably varies slightly from brand to brand. I could usually seat any bullet to maximum OAL. For '94s that's going to be somewhere around 2.55". My notes show #311041 seated to 2.57".

  5. #5
    Boolit Master


    Larry Gibson's Avatar
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    Most 30-30 factory SAAMI spec chambers have little to no throat in them. Also 30-30 cases come from the factories in brass and loaded ammunition with varied OALs much of which I've found to be too long for the 311041 bullet. Thus it is imperative with bullets such as the 311041 or the older 31141 to trim the case to a length so the cartridge fits the chamber when the case mouth is crimped in the crimp groove.

    If you don't want to purchase a large case trimmer I have found the Lee hand case trimmer for the 30-30 trims the cases just fine. If still too long the nose pin can be filed down so the cases are trimmed correctly for your chamber.
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  6. #6
    Boolit Master Char-Gar's Avatar
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    Larry is 100% correct that most 30-30 leverguns, both Winchester and Marlin have very little, if any throat. Often there is just a bevel at the start of the barrel that serves to guide the bullet. You have three options that come to my mind.

    1. Get a throating reamer and put a throat where the factory should have put on in the first place.
    2. Use a bullet that does not have a full diameter band in front of the crimp. NOE makes 311407 Mod and the 165 Ranch Dog mold that do very well in such rifles.
    3. Trim the cases as Larry suggests, but this will still leave the offending band out of the throat.
    Disclaimer: The above is not holy writ. It is just my opinion based on my experience and knowledge. Your mileage may vary.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master




    Scharfschuetze's Avatar
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    Good advice above. I use the 311141 sized to .310" and I trim my cases to the minimum spec of 2.03." That seems to work well in the many 30/30s that I've shot my loads in. Currently three different rifles in the armory (Savage 99 and Winchester Models 94 and 54) will chamber and shoot that formula when I crimp into the crimping groove. OAL of the rounds is 2.505" and the average diameter of the neck using Winchester cases with the bullet seated is: .331"
    Last edited by Scharfschuetze; 07-16-2017 at 11:35 AM.
    Keep your powder dry,

    Scharf

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I think I will need to experiment with seating these deeper in the case, would appreciate any comments.
    Load a round with the bullet finger seated only. Chamber it and gently remove from chamber. Measure with calipers - that's the COAL for your rifle. Pretty simple
    Regards
    John

  9. #9
    Boolit Master Char-Gar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Boy View Post
    Load a round with the bullet finger seated only. Chamber it and gently remove from chamber. Measure with calipers - that's the COAL for your rifle. Pretty simple
    Not that simple John. A round that travels through a tubular magazine with pressure on the bullet nose needs a good crimp to keep the bullet from being shoved back into the case causing an over pressure situation. A taper crimp on a bullet band, not not be enough. There needs to be a roll crimp into some place in the bullet where it will hold.
    Disclaimer: The above is not holy writ. It is just my opinion based on my experience and knowledge. Your mileage may vary.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master MOA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Char-Gar View Post
    Not that simple John. A round that travels through a tubular magazine with pressure on the bullet nose needs a good crimp to keep the bullet from being shoved back into the case causing an over pressure situation. A taper crimp on a bullet band, not not be enough. There needs to be a roll crimp into some place in the bullet where it will hold.

    Char, that is so correct. Too often we forget tubular magazines put additional requirements on our ammunition that we sometimes take for granted on non-tubular magazine rifles. Doing a good pound cast could be quite enlightening as to what your chamber, throat and start of rifling measument are.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks to all, my neck diameters are 0.330 and OAL is 2.532. My cases (Remington) were trimmed to 2.032 with an old Forster trimmer. I did use a lee factory crimp die to crimp these. I'm going to make up some dummy rounds with the cases trimmed back to 2.03, and the bullets seated deeper with a roll crimp in the grove. Got a long way to go to get to Scharfs 2.505 though! In another thread I see a fellow trimming to 2.02 for his 24 Winchester 94s and 1 Marlin. I've never trimmed below 0.01 off max. I really like the accuracy with 8 grains of Unique, this in my first cast in rifle cases and can see this becoming addicting.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Chambers differ slightly and moulds vary somewhat in dimensions, but if you can get that bullet nose to just slightly engrave when chambered and the OAL will still work through the magazine, you'll likely get your best accuracy.

    I haven't loaded .30-30 in so long, I don't remember which bullets would engrave and which would not, but seems like most would.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master




    Scharfschuetze's Avatar
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    I haven't loaded .30-30 in so long, I don't remember which bullets would engrave and which would not, but seems like most would
    I wish I could do that. The band above the crimping groove on my bullets measures only .298" with a hard alloy and never shows any sign of touching the lead or rifling. Wish it did, but it is reliable this way.
    Keep your powder dry,

    Scharf

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    I may have solved this. I found an older Lyman FL 30/30 sizing die in my cabinet, and lubed up 5 cases with the lanolin spray and ran them through. I trimmed one to 2.03 and it dropped right in the chamber. Necks are .330. I trimmed up 4 more cases and after flaring seated bullets are far as I dared right to the top of the crimp groove. I roll crimped one, and used the Lee factory crimp on another. Overall length is 2.529 and 2.530, case necks still .330. Loaded these two in the magazine and they cycled and chambered perfectly in the 94. I did three more dummies the same way and have been running them through 5 at a time and dry firing on the used primers. Could it be as simple as the other Lyman FL die was worn? Also, the Lyman data I have for the 311041 shows an OAL of 2.510. I'm wondering if the location of the crimp groove is farther back on the 31141, no way I can get to that length with my bullets trimming to 2.03. In any case, I have a dozen of the 31141's left so back to the range to try again with the Unique load.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master




    Scharfschuetze's Avatar
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    Good news that.

    I'm sure that the cherries used to cut the cavities in the moulds change slightly over time and maybe that's why the Lyman numeral designation for what looks to be the same bullet changed. It's all beyond me, but I'm glad that the different die solved the problem for you.
    Keep your powder dry,

    Scharf

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Not that simple John. A round that travels through a tubular magazine with pressure on the bullet nose needs a good crimp to keep the bullet from being shoved back into the case causing an over pressure situation. A taper crimp on a bullet band, not not be enough. There needs to be a roll crimp into some place in the bullet where it will hold.
    You guys missed the point ... It's only done with one round in the chamber and NO ROUNDS PUT IN THE MAGAZINE. After the ONE ROUND is extracted from the chamber - measure with calipers for the COAL. Then reload the rounds to that COAL and CRIP ALL ROUNDS for loading in the magazine
    Regards
    John

  17. #17
    Boolit Master popper's Avatar
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    Get a throating reamer and put a throat where the factory should have put on in the first place.
    Begs the ?, what reamer if SAAMI specs don't have a throat? Also, does that really solve the problem? Loading gate/ internals pretty much limit COAL, so the boolit nose shape is the real bugger. I've heard that bore-riders don't do well in Marlin 30/30 but that 041 is about as close as you can get. Only choices I see are deep seating or nose sizing for your rifle. I've been shooting jacket fps i my 30/30 with cast and crimped on the drive bands, loaded in the tube, no problem. My alloy is somewhat hard though.
    Whatever!

  18. #18
    Boolit Master




    Scharfschuetze's Avatar
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    If using bullet designs made for the 30/30, then there is probably no need to ream the throat. The purpose designed bullets (cast and jacketed) probably work in any 30/30 with a properly cut chamber and throat. If the chamber is non-standard, then yes; but that probably does not apply to very many of the millions of the rifles and carbines out there.

    Compared to some cartridge designs, the 30/30 chambers have proven to be remarkably uniform from brand to brand in my experience. The only measurable difference in all the 30/30 chambers that I've measured and shot (three different brands with dates spanning from 1903 to 1978) was the distance from the bolt face to the shoulder, and that by only about .007" or so. As it's a rimmed case, that is not overly important as far as headspace is concerned. As I load for five different 30/30s using the same Lyman design bullet and powder charge, I just FL size, load to the same OAL, crimp with a roll crimp (even for my Model 54 Winchester, Remington 788 and Savage 99H) and call it good.
    Last edited by Scharfschuetze; 07-18-2017 at 09:03 PM.
    Keep your powder dry,

    Scharf

  19. #19
    Boolit Bub hwilliam01's Avatar
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    I used some 119 grain (120 grain) plain based lead bullets in my 30-30 with 8 grains of unique....they shot great and no leading. I plan on using them for small game...rabbits, grouse.

  20. #20
    I've used this bullet in both 30-06 and 308W rifles. Best accuracy results when I seat the bullet "out" to just barely tough the rifling.

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