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Thread: 30-30, any good for bench rest shooting?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    30-30, any good for bench rest shooting?

    Is the 30-30 Win any good for benchrest shooting. Will be usingg a Thompson Contender carbine with 36x BSA scope. Thanks for your help and/or opinions. Tom
    Lost in Penn's Woods.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master on Heavens Range
    felix's Avatar
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    You need to define your BR shooting conditions for a valid answer. What will your cohorts use for same sport? ... felix
    felix

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    It might suprise you. Last year my borther wanted to get his Marlin 16" 30-30 to shoot better, so I offered to get it shooting good. I dont remember the load but I was using 170gr Hornady J-bullets.

    First I think I will tell you about the rifle. It was our grandads fathers gun, he mounted a Redfield 4x mounted on it, its still on the rifle. My great grandad used it for a few years passed it on to my grandad in about 1950 when he started hunting, grandad pasted it to my dad in about 1974 when he stated hunting and up graded to a Win 88 284 (my rifle), my dad bought a Rem 700 lefty 30-06 and the 30-30 to my brother in 1998 when he started hunting. So this rifle has probably thousands of round through it and god knows how many deer it has killed.

    But I worked slowly trying to get a great 50 yard group and when I had one that was a clover leaf I went back to the 100 yard line. I shot from a bench with sandbags and had a group just a bit smaller then 3/4" at 100 yards the rifle needless to say I settled on that load. When my bro got home from work we walked out to the 100 yard line on our private range he shot a 5 shot group that was just this side of 1 1/4" and another that was right in at 1". Zac said "good enough that will kill a deer", second day of deer camp he shot a great little 8 pointer at about 75 yards off hand.

    Not benchrest quality but it might just suprise you, the Ol Marlin has my dad and grandad a little shocked.
    Doug
    .................................................. ........................................
    Sticks and stones may break my bones but hollow points expand on impact.

    Taxidermists are cheaper than surgeons....keep shooting

    ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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  4. #4
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    The chamber has little/no throat, so the barrel needs to be throated for cast bullets for best results. But the 30/30 will still shoot from a factory barrel.
    Headspaces on the rim, so no case setback and headspace problems. MANY molds available in 30 caliber. Long neck so that a wide variety of bullet lengths can be used. Easy to find brass. Small case so it's easy to light the powder and it's efficient.
    I've used a 30/30 for bench rest for ~15 years, and I'm sold.
    joe b.

  5. #5
    Banned Bucks Owin's Avatar
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    Accurate and loud!

    Oddly enough, from my reading, the .30 WCF is VERY accurate from a suitable plarform. It's made it's reputation as having only "adequate hunting accuracy" over the decades because of the rifles usually chambered for it. There have been a few .30/30 bolt guns built which showed exceptional accuracy....

    Don't see why a T/C can't do the same...(Wear earplugs!!!)

    FWIW,

    Dennis

    (Oops, I reread and saw you're talking about a carbine T/C and not a 10" or 14" handgun barrel....Wear earplugs anyway! )
    Last edited by Bucks Owin; 07-31-2006 at 10:37 AM.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master versifier's Avatar
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    Tom,
    It will do, but the T/C barrel may or may not be as accurate as you might prefer. Some are and some aren't. The case's long neck can often help to overcome limitations of short throated chambers, but if you want to shoot really long and heavy boolits, as joeb mentioned, you might have to get the throat reamed. The round still has a great accuracy potential, despite the fact that many of the rifles chambered for it are not known for their tack driving accuracy. However, in a decent bolt action or single shot, its inherent accuracy is revealed, often to the surprise of skeptical onlookers. With 125 gr bullets and with Lee soupcans, I used to use it in both a Rem788 and a Sav24V to keep the woodchucks under control out to 250 yds. (They have a head a little smaller than a tennis ball.) Is that accurate enough?
    Born OK the first time.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    I have a Winchester Model 54 with factory installed Redfield receiver sight. Even woth my lousy eyeballs, I can get 1.25" off the bench with that rifle. It would be very intersting as to how much smaller groups might be if I put a scope on that rifle, but then it would no longer be original and it's semi-serious collector value would go down the tube. It's a nice light fun rifle that I enjoy playing with.
    Paul B.
    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS IS AN OXYMORON PROMULGATED BY MORONS.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master at Heavens Range

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    I wish we could talk Savage into making a run of 30-30 bolts with their Accutrigger. I'd jump on one, and so would lots of other guys.

  9. #9
    Banned Bucks Owin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul B
    I have a Winchester Model 54 with factory installed Redfield receiver sight. Even woth my lousy eyeballs, I can get 1.25" off the bench with that rifle. It would be very intersting as to how much smaller groups might be if I put a scope on that rifle, but then it would no longer be original and it's semi-serious collector value would go down the tube. It's a nice light fun rifle that I enjoy playing with.
    Paul B.
    Gee, that's a rare one! My M-54 is in that newfangled .270 WCF....



    Dennis

    (Took the Redfield sight off of mine for an equally newfangled Weaver 440)
    Last edited by Bucks Owin; 07-31-2006 at 09:08 PM.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    30-30 bench shooting

    Thank you all for your input. I'm haggling now with the owner of a new barrel with shell casings and dies for my Contender carbine. So far we're too far apart but maybe he'll come down. Check my latest post above and see what you think about that one.
    Lost in Penn's Woods.

  11. #11
    Banned Bucks Owin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Junior1942
    I wish we could talk Savage into making a run of 30-30 bolts with their Accutrigger. I'd jump on one, and so would lots of other guys.
    I once had an old .30/30 Savage M-340 that didn't shoot too awful bad.....

    (Sure was butt ugly though.... )

    Dennis

  12. #12
    Boolit Bub
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    My model 94 30-30 shoots 3 inch groups at 200 yards with a redfield reciever sight. The load is 34 gr of IMR 4831 with a RCBS 180 gr fn bullet with a gc.

    My Conterder 14 inch barrel does real good with a lee 170gr gc bullet and 28 gr of RL 7.

    Sixgun

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check