Loads for cast bullets in .30-06?


December 26, 2011, 11:54 PM
Hi guys I have recently got a .30-06 bolt action with 22" barrel and want to work up a load using cheap cast bullets for plinking and punching paper at 100 yards.

The projectile I will be using is a 165grn round nose flat point. I plan on using H4895 (AR2206H), using the 60% rule on Hodgdons website the lowest load I can produce is using 28.5grn and should give me a velocity of ~1670 fps! (This is an approximation because the figure is not based on a cast bullet, the Hodgdon website does not have data for a cast 165grn!)

Does anyone have experience of reduced H4895 loads using the 60%, specifically for cast bullets in .30-06 rifle?

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December 27, 2011, 06:56 AM
Gas check or Plain base bullets??

December 27, 2011, 07:13 AM
Yep , I load 16grs. of Alliants 2400 & get excellent results with a Lyman 314299 & the 311041 , both have a Gas check shank & while the pressures are moderate there more accurate with rather than without a Gas check.

Here`s a bunch of reading for ya & loads , enjoy !!!


Just type 30-06 in the search box .

December 27, 2011, 09:46 AM
Buy yourself a copy of Lyman's Cast Bullet Handbook. And you'll have hours of reading over on castboolits.
Here's a useful article:


December 27, 2011, 03:33 PM
Hi guys, thanks for all the replies, here are the main powders I have access to in Oz and their US equivalents:

Trail Boss Trail Boss
AS30N Clays
AS50N International
AP70N Universal
AR2205 H4227
AR2207 H4198
AR2219 H322
BM2 Benchmark
AR2206H H4895
AR2208 Varget
AR2209 H4350

I just got drawn to H4895, because of the advice on Hodgdon website,


Makes it sound simple, but I like to use published loads!

December 27, 2011, 09:30 PM
Don't know if you can get all these powders downunder, but the link is a great read.

Have you joined www.castboolits.com yet? The linked article by CE Harris is a classic from THE cast boolit master.


Jim Watson
December 27, 2011, 09:43 PM
Of the powders you list, I had best results with H322 (ADI AR2219)
.30-06 27.1 gr H322 + 173 - 180 gr GC shot about 1.5 MOA with an occasional flyer due to my inexperience in casting bullets.

If you want to use 4895 and load up into the high teens, you will need hard cast, well lubricated, gas check bullets of first quality.

If you want cheap fun, I got good shooting with a Laser Cast bulk 165 gr plainbase and 7 or 12 grains of 700X. I bet 7 grains of Clays or 12 grains of Universal would perform similarly but I have NOT tried it.

December 27, 2011, 10:41 PM
All I can find in my Accurate lood book is for 152gr L 180gr L 210gr L aLL MADE IN Lyn-Man molds

35 Whelen
December 28, 2011, 01:41 AM
IF you're wanting to plink cheaply, I'd use Clays, International or Universal. Start with 8.0 grs., which should give around 1100 fps, and work up. I use LOTS of Red Dot, which has a burning rate similar to these powders, in my 30-06 and get great accuracy as in under 2" @ 100 with aperture sights.


December 28, 2011, 03:31 AM
The 60% rule with H4895 works well but I wouldn't push cast bullets without a gas check too hard in the 30-06. With such a long barrel the lube will run out well before the bullet clears the barrel and you will get leading if pushed too hard. Of course if the bullets are hard enough and the proper lube is used you can use plain base bullets. I shoot a plain base 18 BHN bullet in a 30-30 to ~1400 fps without any leading.

That said, lead bullets need less powder to achieve the same velocity as jacketed bullets. If you are going to use jacketed bullet load data I would use the starting charge instead of the Max charge in the formula. (and check for squibs) In that case the charge weight would be 25.8gr H4895 and not 28.5gr.

December 28, 2011, 07:11 AM
I load 16grs. of Alliants 2400 & get excellent results with a Lyman 314299 & the 311041
+1 for this load.
16-18 grns of 2400 under the bullets GP100 lists, or the 311299 and 311284 make for accurate, mild, and position insensitive loads. This load is a very common and widely accepted, among cast boolit shooters. I use straight wheelweights or WWs sweetened with a little 95/5 solder and size them to .310-.311" . I found that casting/sizing them this way and always using a gas check, improves accuracy and eliminates any chance of leading. Good shootin to ya-

December 28, 2011, 07:50 AM
Just found some interesting data on light loads for the .30-06 with 170grn RNFP cast bullet! The best groups were achieved using Blue dot and Red dot!

I know you don't want to load to light with a slow burning powder, but these are both fast burning pistol powders, correct?

Are Blue dot and Red dot position sensitive? Should they be used with a filler?

Anyway these are the suggested loads Blue dot 9grns 1142fps Red Dot 7grns 1113fps!

I am always uneasy as to loads not published in Manuals! Do these loads present any chance of SEE?

If I am going to load that light I am thinking trailboss would be a lot safer, just hope it has sub 1 inch groups at 100 yards!

16-18 grns of 2400 under the bullets GP100 lists, or the 311299 and 311284 make for accurate, mild, and position insensitive loads.

What sort of velocity and group size do you get with that load?

December 28, 2011, 08:08 AM
Out of my Pre-64 Model 70, I get ~ 2" groups off the bench, at 100 yds.

35 Whelen
December 28, 2011, 10:23 AM
Are Blue dot and Red dot position sensitive? Should they be used with a filler?

I've not used any Blue Dot in my rifles simply because other powders I have work so well. If I could only have one powder for my .30 caliber rifles and cast bullets, I'd lose alot of sleep deciding between AL2400 and Red Dot. By the way no filler is necessary. They're both extremely tolerant to position in the case, but then again, so are so many of the pistol/shotgun powders. For just target shooting and plinking, I'd go with Red Dot or something similar but 2400 is better if you need to throttle the loads up for hunting. I use it in my .308 to run a 173 gr. cast HP 1900 fps, and in one of my 06's to run a 180 gr. cast FP a hair over 2000.

+1 on 16.0 grs of 2400. Among cast bullet shooters, 13.0 grs. of Red Dot is aptly named "The Load" for mid-size .30 caliber cartridges such as the .308, 7.5x55, 30-06, etc. I've used both loads extensively and they both work equally well as you can see. The first two targets below was fired with a load using a bullet similar in weight to the one you want to load:







Like someone else suggested, head over to the Cast Boolit Website (http://www.castboolits.gunloads.com/index.php). There's a wealth of good information over there and I can assure there are members there from Australia that can help you with powder selection and loads.


December 28, 2011, 03:03 PM
Though I've used Unique and Universal for loading the .30/06, I've found that the best results are with #2400. I use 20.0gr of #2400 for a target loading as it is very accurate and no filler needed. In fact I wouldn't recommend any filler with the .30/06 with any powder. I use 24.0gr of #2400 as a hunting load for our smaller white-tail deer, when I don't use a .30/30 for such.
H4895 will give good results with the gas-checked bullets, but don't try pushing faster than 2,200fps. I get my best accuracy with cast bullets run no faster than 2,100fps.
I'm using 40.0gr of Reloader15 (a tad slower than 4895) with a 220gr cast bullet in a .338MarlinExpress for 1,980fps and excellent performance on game. Accuracy is better than 2moa at 100yds. I'm also using 25.0gr of #2400 for identical performace. So, as you can see, the faster burning powders can be much more economical than the slower ones with the cast bullets.

I started out loading BlueDot in my cast bullet loads for the .30/06 way back in 1976. 16.5gr gave as good a load as you can get from a cast bullet in the .30/06. I still have that same Lee mold that throws a 160gr FNGC bullet from a single cavity mould.
good luck with the cast bullets.

December 28, 2011, 09:11 PM
Ed Harris told me he has never seen a 30 cal barrel with anything faster than 12 twist shoot cast bullets well. Harvey Donaldson had a 31141 mold and 16 gr. 4759 that shot under an inch at 100.
Harvey also said he only ever saw one bullet do well for accuracy that did not have a flat nose. If you can find a book Yours Truly Harvey Donaldson it is some excellent articles of lead bullets.

Also looke for articles by Ed Harris. He is good friend and really knows the cast bullet game.

December 29, 2011, 10:37 AM
I've used the H4895 in 30-30, 243 and 308. Works well. Haven't used 2400, but Unique does a good job for me .

December 29, 2011, 11:25 AM
Did not read all posts. A gun rag had an article about Trail boss for such an application. I cant seem to find the article for reference.

The key to the article was--DO NOT COMPRESS TRAIL BOSS.
Check w/ maker of po to get their recommendations, always.

December 29, 2011, 11:30 AM
I used to shoot with the cast bullet assn using a M70 in 30-06. My best load ever, while a little time consuming to assemble, was: LC case, fl sized, ttl, and slightly expanded with a M die. Lyman 311291 gc cast of wheel weights and heat treated, Hornady gas check. 24 grains of IMR4198 and a tuft of kapok over the powder. Many moa groups produced with that load. Heat treating was done in the kitched oven on a griddle, bullets sized, not lubed, set gas check down and stove set at about 350. when the first one falls over, dump the rest from the griddle into a bucket of water. Then lube and wait 17 days (age hardening) If I remember right, we got up to about brinnell 25.

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