Downloading 30cal for plinking


April 11, 2010, 03:27 PM
Hi guys, I searched and didn't find what I was looking for. I know that some download a.308 or 30-06 with 4-5 grains of Bullseye or other fast powder and use a roundball .311 or .312 diameter. Anyone like to fill me in on other details, just for plinking or maybe small game hunting. Thanks Mac

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Ed Harris
April 12, 2010, 03:17 PM
In the .308 Win., .303 British or .30-'06 a charge of 8 grains of almost any fast burning pistol or shotgun powder, such as Bullseye, 700-X, Red Dot, W231, Unique, 7625 or PB makes a good small game and gallery load with either a 110-170 grain cast lead, plainbased , or 110-grain jacketed bullet. Go here for more data

7.62 Nato
April 12, 2010, 09:03 PM
This may be similar to what you are asking for.

April 12, 2010, 09:34 PM
I strongly urge you to disreguard the above advice on propellants for such loads.

This isn't the 1960's today we actually have a propellant that's well suited for such loads that won't blow your face off with an invisible double charge.

It's called trail boss, it's an extremely high bulk per weight powder that will fill a 308/30-06 case with max loads that with the 06 generate 1400ish fps W 150g jacketed bullets with only 19.0g which is a case filled to the bottom of the neck.

Go to hodgdon's webpage for more details and data

Bwana John
April 12, 2010, 10:30 PM
I like SR 4759 for reduced loads in 30-06.

I ainta gonna load Bullseye in a 30-06 case, no way no how. :eek: (but i have used Unique for 30-06 with lead bullets)

April 12, 2010, 10:32 PM
I have a lee 150gr. fn boolit & 9.5 grs of 700x in these.
The 30-30s have clays in em , I was low on 700x.

April 13, 2010, 01:40 AM
I haven't loaded reduced loads in a .30 caliber in probably 25 years, but have in other calibers.
The only piece of advice I will give ALL, about reduced loads in large cases, fill the remainder of the volume with something like ka-pock or ? to keep the powder against the primer.
A number of years back, a fellow brought his prized custom .30 caliber rifle into a gunsmith I visited on a regular basis. The receiver ring was cracked, as was the barrel. It seems that the gentlemen had loaded some light loads for his grandson to shoot. Very small charge of fast burning powder and a light bullet. The previous round had made it to the target, as did the one that created the problem, but the barrel had been pointed toward the ground, (I didn't say stuck into the ground) between the rounds. By doing so, it is summized that all that powder, 10-15 grains, had flowed to the base of the bullet, then when the rifle was brought to the shooting position , the powder laid out along the bottom of the case, when the primer ignited the powder it burned from the front of the case toward the rear causing a tremendous pressure surge.
This used to be called a flash over.
Enjoy the reduced loads, they are a real blast, but fill the void above the powder with something to keep the powder where it belongs.


April 13, 2010, 01:32 PM
The beauty of Trailboss and SR4759 are they are both bulky enough they fill the case to the point where fillers are unnecessary. SR4759 was specifically developed for shooting reduced loads in full sized cases. At it’s introduction that was it’s sole purpose. Trailboss was originally brought to market as a powder for Cowboy Action shooting, sort of a modern day smokeless black powder substitute. Both work great and have the add safety benefit of filling the case to the point were double charges are impossible because a double charge will over flow the case.

A Lee Lube and Sizing Kit is a great tool for sizing your lead round balls. They cost about $15. The 0.309” would be a good for most .30 cals, though you may find the 0.311 has application, as well, especially if you have a Marlin .30-30 with Micro Groove rifling.

Some further reading on reduced loads:

Reduced Recoil Reloads by Chuck Hawks --


April 13, 2010, 07:28 PM
There were some old recipes in the American Rifleman many years ago using round balls and pistol powders. Today I would opt for t\]using SR-4759, XMP-5744 or Trail Boss with lead bullets.

April 14, 2010, 01:27 AM
Just another vote for Trailboss. 10.4 gn behind a 180 gn .30-30 pill gets me 1040 FPS. Perfect sub-sonic load for my .308, No problems with SEE (Secondary Explosive Effect) when the case is full of that light fluffy powder. ~Wingnut13

April 14, 2010, 07:57 AM
i like to be someplace between the powder puff loads and full power loads. for that purpose, i've found h-4895 really good. i like to run a 110 grain hollow point at about 2000-2500 f/s. very low recoil, less noise than full power, but still has the 'feel' of a 'real' centerfire rifle...

Lorenzo Rojo
April 15, 2010, 12:31 PM
I use 10.5 grains of Unique behind a 165 grain RNFP cast lead bullet for 1400 fps lever action silhouette shooting loads in .30-30. Low recoil but still enough juice to knock down the 55 lb. ram silhouette at 200 meters. I charge the case and seat the bullet immediately so that I don't double-charge. I think I'll try the Trail Boss soon as the suggestion from krochus makes a lot of sense to me.

Jim Watson
April 15, 2010, 12:59 PM
Never have fooled with round ball squibs* because I want to shoot at 100 yards.

I have had good shooting from a .30-06 with 12.5 gr 700X and the 165 gr Laser Cast plain base. For some odd reason their gas check bullet was not nearly as accurate, with or without gas check.

I am very careful to avoid double charges.

Cast rifle bullets are fun and allow cheap practice. Not difficult if you clean the coppering out of the barrel first and if you don't try to push cast bullets to jacketed speeds.

*When I was coming up in handloading, a squib was a very light load for short range practice. The language has mutated to where the present Internet Definition has come to cover a bullet stuck in the barrel because powder was negligently left out of the cartridge.

April 15, 2010, 01:18 PM
FYI look for a detailed range and chrony report on Trail Boss in 30-06 coming up as soon as I can stop these dang pygmy goats from gettin out!

April 16, 2010, 09:11 AM
Can't argue about using Trail Boss, it's just the powder suited for what your wanting to do.
I've used Bullseye, RedDot, Clays etc. for ultralight pinking loads with lead bullets in highpower calibre rifles, but after trying TB, which seems perfectly suited for the purpose, including the added safety that's a bulky low energy powder to fill large case volumes enough so a double charge is 'basically' impossible.

Round balls are fiddly and difficult to load into bottle neck cases at times and a better option is to use .311" 32cal lead pistol bullets in .308" or even try looking for a caster selling 30-30 cowboy action match lead bullets, they also work well in 308, 30-06, etc. with TB.

April 16, 2010, 12:14 PM
or even try looking for a caster selling 30-30 cowboy action match lead bullets, they also work well in 308, 30-06, etc. with TB.

cough! ahem! MissouriBullet cough!

April 16, 2010, 09:48 PM
Thanks guys, I was just thinking aloud. I saw a post awhile back somewhere calling them squirrel loads. I thought it would be neat to go small game hunting with my '06. I have shotguns and 22's. Just something different to do, however I do want to be safe and that is why I asked you "experts". My motto is 2 heads are better than 1 especially if 1 of them is mine.

April 16, 2010, 10:35 PM
This is from Hodgdon's web site for .308 Win.
168 GR. SIE HPBT Hodgdon Titegroup .308" 2.800" 8.0 1080 25,000 CUP
168 GR. SIE HPBT Hodgdon Clays .308" 2.800" 8.0 1060 26,800 CUP

April 18, 2010, 10:52 AM
Only real problem you might experience with the RB usage is leading. I'd suggest you 'tumble lube' the things with Lee's liquid alox if you elect to use them.

I have done precise that when using .311 rb's just foolin' around with my NAA .32 auto & achieved some suprisingly accurate loads using BE.

Far as the rifle goes, I've had excellent results with Lyman's 311041 cast from straight wheelweights, sized .308 with about 12.0 of Unique......lube is Javelina brand alox.......I DO use a kapok filler. Same load works well in an old Mosin M/44 I own. Had similar good results with the .30/30 as well.

That '06 load will hold ragged hole groups at a friend's 52 yard range and around an inch at 100. Rifle's an old 1948 M/70.

I would not hesitate to use that rifle or load for small game but I've found that those cast bullets are explosive as the devil on deer sized animals when bone is struck when driven somewhere in the vicinity of 2000 fps.

April 18, 2010, 07:17 PM
My preliminary 100yd results using trail boss are looking very very promising. I'll post in more detail later.

April 19, 2010, 11:07 AM
Try this page from Junior Doughty, who has a lot of other neat things on his website as well.

April 19, 2010, 11:31 AM
As posted above, Trail Boss is a good choice for reduced loads, but SR4759 is better.

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