Question on .30-06 load


May 17, 2010, 01:52 AM
I'm new to rifle reloading and am starting to work up a load for 168gr SMK and IMR 4350. The Sierra book shows a start charge of 55gr. and max of 59gr. When I weigh a 55gr. charge, it fills the case almost up to the neck. Does that sound right? I've double-checked my measurements, but I'm just surprised that it would be that full (I'm used to loading handgun practice ammo with 5 or 6 gr. of powder that doesn't fill the case even half full). Please let me know if this sounds OK or if I'm not doing something right. Thanks!!

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May 17, 2010, 01:59 AM
4350 is a bulky powder. Many .30-06 loads with slow burning extruded powders are heavily compressed.

If it bothers you, try my .30-06 powder. W-W 760/H414. Basically a spherical version of 4350. very similar burning rates and velocities. And, in my rifles at least, slightly better accuracy.

May 17, 2010, 02:19 AM
This is correct. At 55grs the powder comes just to where the neck starts to taper. Max of 59grs should show as a compressed load with IMR 4350 as it comes to just about 1/4 inch below the mouth of the case.

May 17, 2010, 02:44 AM

What you are describing is normal. Please post what you come up with for a load, I am interest in you results. I have attached a copy of my results with H-4350 and to be honest I wasn't impressed. I am still looking for a good powder for my 30-06. The best I have found so far were some Federal Factory loads made a few years ago using 165 gr Sierra Game Kings that were called Federal High Velocity, they were $10 a box. I wish I could either still buy those rounds or find a load that matched them Those rounds chronographed at just over 3000 fps and had a MOA of less than 1.

I am getting ready to try H414 in my 308 165gr Hornady SST and if it works out I'll give it a try in my 30-06. What load are you using in your 30-06 H414?

May 17, 2010, 08:23 AM
No problem, COgunner. When I load my .30-06 with RL22, the powder comes about halfway up the neck.


May 17, 2010, 10:31 AM
I loaded and shot thousands of 168/175 SMK with 55.0 grains IMR 4350. In my rifles it shot sub MOA.

With a 175, it chronographed just at 2700 fps in a 26" Wilson match.

May 17, 2010, 10:35 AM
Thanks a lot, guys! I know it was a real rookie question, but I just wanted to make double sure before I lit it up.

I will post my results - going to the range this morning. I also have a couple of pounds of 4064 to try in it next trip.

May 17, 2010, 12:01 PM

I'm currently using 150 grain Barnes "X," and 150 grain speer SPBT over 58.0 of H414.

This is a maximum, so work up to it.

Arkansas Paul
May 17, 2010, 01:51 PM
Idano, I've had good luck with 54 grains of H414 behind a 165 grain SST.
H380 isn't a bad powder for the .30-06 either, if you're trying different ones out.
For the lighter bullets, (150 grain) I like Varget.

May 17, 2010, 05:37 PM
I just got back from the range and am encouraged by my first try. I tried charges of 55, 56, 56.5, and 57 grs of 4350 behind the 168 SMKs. Best groups (0.75" and 0.77" @ 100 yds.) were with 55 gr.. Next time out, I'm going to try loads ranging from 54.5 to 55.5 grs. and see if I can fine tune it any. I also want to play around with OAL - the ones I shot today were .035 off the lands.

May 17, 2010, 09:35 PM
Sounds like your well on your way - Good Job.

cheygriz and Pauld thanks for passing on your reloading information.

May 18, 2010, 03:32 AM
Well done, please keep us posted. I'm always interested in 30-06 loads especially when using 4350.

May 18, 2010, 09:08 AM
Best groups (0.75" and 0.77" @ 100 yds.) were with 55 gr..

Wish I could claim credit for finding that load, but 55 grains of IMR 4350 with a 168 SMK was a common across the course bolt rifle load before the 308 nudged out the 30-06.

If you want a light recoiling 200 yard load, 42.0 grains IMR 4895 with a 168 is an excellent load.

bogus mcall
May 18, 2010, 01:16 PM
In my new (to me) Ruger no.1, 30/06. My initial load work-up I am using 168 gr A-Max and 49 gr of varget. With the oal at 3.310. 5 shot groups have been between .50-.75" hard to believe, I know. But Winchester 165gr SP shoot 1" also. I've read a lot of people don't think varget works well with bullets over 150gr, but that has not been my experance.

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