.30-30 or 7.62x39?


May 26, 2003, 12:49 AM
Knowing little about either round, what are the advantages and disadvantages of each?

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May 26, 2003, 01:29 AM
123 gr, MV 2300/V@100yds ,2030/EF#@ M, 1445/E@100yds, 1125/E @200 yds 860.

Fed #3030A
150 gr, MV2390/V@100 /EF# @ M 1900/ EF# @ 100yds ,1355/ EF# @ 200yds, 945.

The 30-30 comes in the Marlin and Winchester configurations, lever actions, blue-wood and sooo classic.
Many a deer have bowed down in its honor.
Great out to 125-150 yds. avail in 125,150, 170 gr loadings (off top of head). Great for brush, close in shots. Carries well, a lot in a contained package (no mags). Depends on what the use is for. In rural USA everyone seems to have one, get ammo at the gas station, more PC.

Limited esp on the 7.62x39,
In your area the platform may not be allowed. Ammo in case lots is cheap, but again, legal in Kali? Use ?

Sir Galahad
May 26, 2003, 01:36 AM
The advantage of the 7.62x39 is that it is a LOT cheaper than .30-30 and fairly similar ballisticly. Cheaper means more practice. More practice means more proficiency. To afford lots of practice with .30-30, you need to reload. Another advantage of 7.62x39 is the platform: AKM. Of course, you cannot cross that bridge til you cross the bridge over the Colorado River for good. You can find 7.62x39 so cheap, you can actually buy it by the case of 1,000 rounds. Try buying 1,000 rounds of new .30-30. It all depends on what you're going to do with it, too. If you're not going to hunt regularly, why do you need .30-30? For average fun shooting and citizen's homeland defense self-training, the 7.62x39 is perfect.

May 26, 2003, 02:19 AM
In your case Skunk, I think it comes down to one simple question...

.. which do you fear more? A potential armed assailant, or the good citizens who'll crucify you for offing said assailant?

Answer that question, and you've decided which weapon you want.


six 4 sure
May 26, 2003, 02:26 AM
I'd have to agree cost of ammo is the biggest advantage. 1000 round cases of 7.62x39 can easily be found on the net for around $100. The best prices I've seen for 30-30 are around $10 for a box of 20. So basically you get five times the 7.62x39 ammo for the same price.

I haven't checked lately, but last I remember a good lever action 30-30 costs about the same as a Sks or AK varient.

For me my 30-30 was more accurate than my Mak 90 (not by much), but you loose the fun of emptying a 30rd clip.:)


May 26, 2003, 02:29 AM
7.62x39 is my choice. It is so cheap as opposed to the .30-.30.
I don't own a .30=.30 so the choice is even easier for me.

May 26, 2003, 02:55 AM
The .30-30 is a reliable deer killer. Winchester and Marlin together have made millions of them. Not fancy, but they do the job nicely in the deer woods. With 170 grain bullets, they have also taken many a moose or bear.

Unless you have one of those rare bolt actions or single shots, you have to use flat pointed bullets in the .30-30 with tubular magazine. Not to hard to find Contenders in .30-30, if you hanker for a pistol.

Most of the Winchester or Marlin .30-30's are slim, handy rifles. The Winchester is the traditional choice. The Marlin is homlier, usually shoots better, and easily takes a scope. I want a Winchester, myself.:)

The 7.62 is a interesting cartridge. One of these days I might acquire one of the bolt actions, crank it up, and see what the cartridge will really do. Of course, I could do the same thing with a single shot .30-30:D

In states where it's legal, I always thought a 7.62 would be a good deer/turkey caliber - stuff a FMJ in the chamber when the birds come up, a softpoint for deer.:D

May 26, 2003, 03:15 AM

young lady friend has the handy rifle scoped in 30-30. I cannot remember a year she has NOT taken deer with it. Don't know the loading her daddy came up with, using pointed bullets. After the trigger job, this thing is sweet, accurate, DRT tool. Has a mount in her Jeep for it and ready to go.

For "littler critters" (her words) daddy came up with an accelerator load, lighter bullet , she has a ball with the littler critters...

May 26, 2003, 03:26 AM
Dang I forgot Handi-rifles...certainly not uncommon. I was thinking Winchester and Ruger Single shots, which aren't too common in the caliber.

You won't of course find any factory .30-30 ammo with pointy bullets - that is a handloading proposition only.

May 26, 2003, 03:34 AM
Like I said her daddy came up with some handloads, with pointy bullets.

But even with the flat nose , this thing is a hoot. Not your regular daddy's girl, plain Jane Jeep, Handy Rifle, oh, she is good with a Blackhawk in 44 also...sometimes to make it "sporting" she takes deer with it instead.

Her new hubby...didn't really know what he married, she refused the new Benz...wants to take a Hunting trip instead:D
She will allow him to put a new engine and trannie in the Jeep, though....150K mi on it.

May 26, 2003, 04:14 AM
I have and use both calibers, ballistically they are similar with the 30-30 winning out on both speed and accuuracy. No one is going to give you any grief for hunting with a 30 30 but take an AK, SKS or Mini 30 into the field and watch people give advice. :cuss:

I like my mini 30 for game up to coyote. I reload using 308 caliber bullets, nosler makes a fine balistic tip in 125 grains.

My 30 30 has been used on deer with great success and will be used on deer again. More deer have fallen to the 30 30 than any other round. Remember the 30 30 was the very first smokeless powder round.

Aside from hunting a nice SKS would be a fun and inexpensive gun to have around, we can still buy them with fixed mags in California.

May 26, 2003, 11:51 AM
It'll be a car gun. The 30-30 seems like it'll be slower to load even if the Marlin has more 'Reehaw' than the SKS...

My M1A is on the fritz right now so I feel kind of empty without a rifle, and I can't afford (nor do I want) two.

My only fear, as Kaylee says, is that the SKS won't be as PC.

No need to hunt with either .30-30 or 7.62x39.

Sir Galahad
May 26, 2003, 02:45 PM
I thought driving around with a firearm in your car was illegal in Cali unless you're going to or from the range or the gun shop. In some cases, they may consider loaded stripper clips as loaded mags and, hence, a "loaded" weapon in the car. Especially in an SUV where you cannot lock the weapon in the trunk. Life is soooo much easier in Arizona. Loaded gun in car is normal.

May 26, 2003, 04:13 PM
Got my Saiga 7.62 for new for about $170.

May 26, 2003, 04:27 PM
Seems to me there's a plethora of other choices, too, for rifles:

1. SMLE enfields - holds ten shots in .303 British, which ain't no puffcake caliber. Quaintly tactical.

2. Steyr Mountain rifles in .308 - also holds ten shots in the same caliber as your M1A. Greater versatility than an autoloader, as you may shoot Hornady Light mags in it. Black plastic tactical stock.

3. M1 Garand - more umph than a .308. Classic tactical

4. M1 carbine - cheaper to shoot than a Garand. Classic tactical.

5. Savage 99 - .300 Savage is an old caliber, but still readily available. 150's at 2600 fps beats either the SKS or .30-30. can use pointed bullets, too. I've owned two, and they both will outshoot most bolt actions. Not even slightly tactical

May 26, 2003, 04:38 PM
I got to shoot my buddies little 30 carbine, its a neat gun. Hes had it since he was a kid (hes 28 now). Hes a great shot with it, and its a quick little mankiller. The thing jams up on just about every shot though:uhoh:

May 26, 2003, 04:54 PM
Skunk, don't know about the reload , a # of rural Sheriff's use the lever actions.

Others that have been to the various training facilites--chime in.

Doesn't Clint Smith and others teach a carbine class with the lever action? Referred to in an issue of S.W.A.T ? Denny ?

My "forgeter" is working better than memory .

May 26, 2003, 08:11 PM
As a non-hunter who owns both a Winchester 94 in 30-30 and a 7.62x39 SKS let me put in my .02.

There are advantages to both, and they are cheap enough that you may as well get both. However, I do prefer the lever gun.

I find lever guns to be amazingly fun. I enjoy shooting this more than any of my other guns (even more than my handguns). It may have something to do with my being such a history buff, but it just has a class and a connection to history that is hard to find in other firearms. It also has quite a bit of oomph in a very small and light package. It is far more handy than the SKS. It is easier to top off (you can easily load up the gun before it is empty at any time, not so easy on the SKS without manually locking back the bolt). It is also far less likely to raise eyebrows if you plan to keep it in your trunk (it looks less tactical).

The SKS uses cheaper ammo. It provides for faster reloads from scratch (if you use stripper clips). The rate of fire is slightly faster.

Ammo for the SKS if bought in bulk will run about $2 a box. The cheapest I've seen 30-30 (in the paper edition of the Natchez catalogue) was around $7, at local stores it is just under $10 for the cheaper stuff. If you don't plan ahead a little though the 7.62 isn't much cheaper since most Walmarts and sporting goods stores tend to stock the American made commercial stuff for 7.62x39 which runs about $8 a box.

Either rifle will easily be powerful enough for self defense duties, however they aren't really suitable for such in most urban or suburban environments (significant overpenatration issues). However, you can get "tactical" and frangible loadings for the 7.62x39 (I know that Natchez carries several makes).

Another option you may want to consider is a lever rifle in a revolver caliber (there are plenty in .44mag and .357mag). Cheaper than 30-30 and more ammo capacity, plenty of power for self defense purposes (especially out of a long gun), available in very compact and lightweight carbines (yet they look fairly PC), it can be used at indoor pistol ranges (the potential for more training/practice since it can come with you both at the rifle range and when you go to indoor ranges to practice with your pistols), and far less overpenatration than the rifle calibers (though more than the same calibers, which are known for overpenatration compared to other handgun calibers, in a handgun).

I love my 30-30 and I would certainly do the lever gun in your situation. I find I shoot it more than the SKS (since I like the lever gun more), I shoot it better, it feels better, it is lighter, etc. However, I would probably go with the Winchester or Marlin .44mag first (then later get the 30-30 and SKS). If you want to be able to shoot cheap go w/ the .357mag since you can load it up with .38spls ($7 for 50 rounds isn't much worse then the $2-3 for 20 that 7.62x39 costs).

Sir Galahad
May 26, 2003, 08:41 PM
In Southern Cali, I don't think it would make much difference if it was an SKS or a Sharps buffalo rifle. The cops aren't going to like a firearms being carted around unless you're going to the range or coming back. I could be wrong, but last I lived there, they didn't like it.

May 27, 2003, 12:05 AM
Chaim has some pretty good points:)

If you get a .44 mag lever action - you're talking 1700 fps with 240 grain bullets, which will get any bad guy's undivided attention. You could also then justify a revolver thingy in same caliber. Or a Desert Eagle.

Come to think of it, doesn't Rossi have a .454 casull lever action?:evil: Wonder how fast a .454 rifle will drive 300's?

May 27, 2003, 12:16 AM
Have shot the .44 mag, nice gun and I liked it. I haven't shot the .357, but am told this is a true sleeper. Accurate, fun, hard hitting, minimal recoil.

chaim, good points , thanks for sharing your experience.

I still wonder though--Skunk, do you have CCW in Kali? Other than to and from range what is the law in regard to firearms in vehicle?

I have both res and non re FL . I carry concealed, pretty flexible with firearms in vehicle, here. ( had about 60 various handguns, shotguns and rifles recently along for a ride, some even in the bed of the truck). :D

August 18, 2003, 12:51 AM
I love my sks.It is very accurate and has always reliably cycled 30 rd clips. I have shot my brothers Marlin 30 30 as well and it is a very nice rifle. I personally like to aggressive styling that the folding synthetic stock and 30 rd clip give to the rifle. I use it for various hunting applications. The ammo is so inexpensive that I chose to shoot the rifle regularly with amazing accuracy at 100 yards +.

thanks for the space


August 18, 2003, 01:16 AM
Seems kind of like old skunk is taking the 5th...

August 18, 2003, 01:32 AM
Skunk, in my honest opinion: BOTH

The Winchester model 94 is a GREAT close quarters weapon. Hits hard and is fast, light and compact. Lighter and more compact (and intuitive) than an SKS paratrooper model even without any frills. The SKS is a good rifle too, especially the Yugo. That's the best buy for the money. An excellent condition used or new model 94 will cost alot more than a shooter grade Yugo SKS, but you'll get a much better and slightly more accurate firearm. The 30-30 is a more powerful round than the 7.62X39mm, but not by a whole lot.

I prefer the Winchester Power Point Plus 150gr. cartridges for hunting and self defense. They push over 2,000 ft/lbs out of the Winchester model 94 barrel. They really pack a wallop close to the power of .308 in a Mini-14 sized gun. The 7.62X39mm ammo I like is Silver Bear 'effect'. This stuff is awesome and I believe it's over 1,400 ft/lbs in energy, maybe even around 1,450 and it's supposed to be military grade as far as I know and it's made in Russia largest ammo plant. Some has a nickel coating of the metal case, but most seems to have zinc coating, spelled as "Zink" on the box, so it's much nicer to your guns internals (especially the extractor) than normal steel cased (like the Wolf crap) and isn't laquered. The nice thing about the model 94 (tactically speaking) is that you can fire and keep it topped off because of the tubular magazine, while with the SKS when you fire ten rounds you're in trouble because you gotta see how fast you can load another ten round stripper clip into the mag in the dark unless you have some loose rounds handy, but then you run the risk (even more so than loading with stripper clips in the dark) of turning your thumb into jello if you manage to release the 'you know what' accidently as you're loading shells. Admittedly, this is not as hard as it sounds with practice, but when SHTF, I would go for the model 94 anytime.

The SKS's trigger really leaves alot to be desired and the AK's (SAR-1) isn't any better unless you invest in a match grade trigger group for the SAR-1 in which case you're above the price of a decent model 94. That said, I still wouldn't mind a nice SAR-1 with some 30 round mags as an "Extra" SHTF rifle. The Yugo SKS is a great value as well. It's had flawless function over 400 rounds and no jams so far. I just sprayed a little Break Free CLP on the rails just to be nice to it. I cleaned the cosmo out really well, but other than that I haven't babied the unissued SKS. I would take any of the rifles mentioned, but would prefer the 94 as a home defense rifle with the edge (but not powerwise) perhaps going to the Yugo SKS (because of its high rate of fire) or Romanian SAR-1 AK clone against multiple home invasion style attackers. Personally though I'd still prefer the model 94 in such a situation because of the benefits mentioned above (intuitive handle, fast handling, light, accurate, keeping the tube mag topped off easily, better trigger, ect.) and the better overall quality of the firearm and ammo.

Good (Silver Bear 'effect' or Cheetah) 7.62X39mm is MUCH MUCH cheaper than the best or even average 30-30 ammo. I pay $14 a box for 20 rounds of 30-30 150gr. Winchester Power Point Plus + shipping and only after I shop around.

Master Blaster
August 18, 2003, 09:10 AM
Everyone keeps mentioning that you can top off the lever action, on my model 94 I don't see that is possible, It seems to me that you have to empty the tubular magazine, before you can insert additional rounds.

When loading you need to keep a shell sticking halfway out and use the next one to follow behind, if the shell is pushed all the way in and the little door closes the spring and follower in the tube push the shell against the carrier, making it impossible to insert another. The model 94 I own does not have a shell latch like a 870 where you can top off the tubular magazine.

Are Marlins different?

August 18, 2003, 04:28 PM
Yes? I dunno. :confused: Push harder.

No, seriously, maybe you need to push harder on the door...i don't see how your rifle would function with a shell sticking halfway out...it would block the rest of the shells in the tube from feeding. On my Marlin 336, the door seems to be the thing which holds the shells in the feeding tube. When loading, you have to push in kinda hard (which deforms the lead on soft tip bullets slightly), but it'll open up, then you push the shell foward to get it in the tube.

I have a Marlin 336 30-30, but I'm getting an SKS tonight.

August 18, 2003, 05:03 PM
"Remember the 30 30 was the very first smokeless powder round."

It was the second. The first one was .30-40 Krag

"When loading you need to keep a shell sticking halfway out and use the next one to follow behind, if the shell is pushed all the way in and the little door closes the spring and follower in the tube push the shell against the carrier, making it impossible to insert another."

Try pushing harder. If that doesn't work, have a gunsmith look at it, because you are suposed to be able to "top off".

"...i don't see how your rifle would function with a shell sticking halfway out..."

He means that when loading, he leaves the last round hanging out to keep the door thingy from shutting so he can put the next round in with less effort. I load my lever guns the same way. The last round goes all the way in...


If your friends M1 is jamming that often, check the recoil spring. It might be worn out. My dad's carbine had the same problem. I learned to shoot with it, and borrow it fairly often, and it's had alot of rounds thur it. It started jamming like that, and it turned out that we had just shot it so often that the springs were wearing out. Very cheap and easy to fix...

August 19, 2003, 09:27 PM
I feel like saying something that sounds intellegent but I guess I have a loss for words or writers block. I will say that if I had to choose between the two rifles the sks is winner for me. Even though I may use that" wolf crap" ammunition as I have heard it called. I feel if homeland defense is such an issue and you need to stockpile some shells to off the assailant when the time comes. The money it takes to stock up on the wolf is cheap and I am not looking to spend a lot of money when I can save it here and there. Also I dont no anyone willing to stand off at 100 yards and take a chance at the recieving end of a wolf shell. I have never had a single mis fire using the ammo. And the results. Give me a pocket full of stripper clips and a tree stand and sit back and watch;)


Fish Springs
August 19, 2003, 10:16 PM
Bought an 1894G from Marlin for just such a truck gun. In Texas a loaded long gun is legal to travel with and the 44 mag/44 special combination makes for a nice, handy accurate urban rifle.

Either find an 1894G (ports and all) or the SS model then start working on finding a pistol to go with the rifle.

BTW I tried the 30/30 route, the Marlin is shorter. I have yet to find an SKS that will shoot better groups than my 870 (slugs or shot). A Ruger Mini-14 in .223 would be my non-lever choice, maybe a Ruger in 7.62x39 if there was accurate, inexpensive domestic ammunition to be had one presidential order and the imported ammo is no more.

Any way way you want it the Marlin and a 629 of some form is going to be a happy combination--and there is plenty of cowboy class ammmo to practice with. Plenty of Winchster 240 Grain HPs around for anything else. BTW the Marlin will shoot inside of 4" at 100 yards off the bench, open sights.

Western, Urban, Rifle (http://www.marlinfirearms.com/firearms/1894_centerfireRifles/1894SS.htm)

August 19, 2003, 10:47 PM
I have 2 Hungarian pre ban AK-47's and 2 Yugo Pre ban folder AK-47's. I got 120+ magazines for them and close to 9000 rounds in sealed cases . I have 2 30-30's : a 1955 Winchester model 94 and a Marlin SS Carbine with Ghost ring and scout scope . I might have 200 rounds of 30-30. Guess which one I pick up to check out trouble around the ranch or remote camp sights? Hint: the AK's were to arm neighbors and friends to defend my neck o' the woods in bad times. I , being a TRAINED and EXPERIENCED shooter and hunter , feel better with the 30-30's!:cool:

August 20, 2003, 01:08 AM
I would get a 7.62x39, if for ammo considerations only. CZ makes a nice, and very handy, little bolt gun for it. About $450.

August 20, 2003, 01:12 AM
I have seen some reasonably nice shots taken with a 30 30 open sights, but it seems to me most with the 3030 go with a scope mount. I on the other hand shoot open sights with my chinese sks and feel very comfortable saying I can bust Ale 8 bottles at 100 yards +. Wether that is a four inch group or not remains to be said. I may not be TRAINED by a proffesional or EXPERIENCED in the tactics of urban combat . I will say this though. I feel comfortable defending the homeplace with my rifle and this old hilljack has seen the power that this rifle has. Maybe it is all political and I am not being correct to say this, but since the free trade agreement was passed our jobs have all gone over seas. Should I buy American? maybe. If that was possible and cost effective. I have had my sks since 1990, at least 2 years before the ban started. No one had such strong opinions then. Why now? fingers all seem to point towards terrorist related incidents. I personally feel that our government is "in bed" with these organazations merely to gain higher profits on the products they have already monopolized. For instance the american made 30 30 rifle. I would not be afraid to say the just as much of that "american dollar" funds those that despise us the most. We talk about freedom and peace loving nations, when we live in the most regulated and controlled part of the world. Somehow I do have the freedom to chose what I shoot to a certain extent. For the mean time anyway. Sorry if I strayed from the subject but I feel it is all relevant.

The right to bear arms shall NOT be INFRINGED upon in any way. yeah right.

He that holds the gold makes the GOLDEN RULE

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