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125 gr. 30.06

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by wvhunter, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. wvhunter

    wvhunter New Member

    Oct 18, 2006
    Im about ready to start getting in some practice this year in preparation for deer season and looking into some new 30.06 loads. Since my rifle is pretty light, I tend to get a lot of recoil. Also the hard rubber recoil pad isn't much help. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with the remington express 125 gr. cartridges? I assume these cartridges would carry a little less recoil with them???

    These cartridges are very similar in ballistics as the 150 gr. remington express's with a little less energy, although it still looks like plenty of energy to take down a deer out to 400-500 yards. Has anyone ever used the 125 gr's to take a deer in the field?

    Also, I was considering giving the managed recoil's a go, but it looks like their ballistics are a good bit different from the 150 gr's im used to.

    Lastly, it looks like the 125 gr's are not made in the remington cor-lok, but just your regular soft point bullet. Would this make much difference in exapansion/take down power or is that a minor issue?
  2. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Elder

    Oct 14, 2005
    Northwest Arkansas
    If you want mild recoiling 30-06 on the cheap for practice check out the Acadmey brand monarch ammo. Less than $9 a box this russian made steel cased ammo uses a 140grn bullet that combined with the somewhat below spec velocity of 2700fps makes for a very mild 30-06 round.

    This stuff shoots great in my Encore and even though the stuff is hardly high tech it should be more than up to the task of killing whitetail.
  3. WuzYoungOnceToo

    WuzYoungOnceToo member

    Sep 6, 2007
    It depends on the distances from which you anticipate doing your shooting. You mentioned the energy of the 125 gr. Express at "400-500 yards", but I'm assuming you don't really plan on taking shots at that range in the field. If I'm wrong about that then just ignore the following:

    If you realistically anticipate only taking shots from 200 yds. or less (the case in many, if not most deer hunting areas) then the Managed Recoil rounds are a viable option. They live up to the lion's share of their promise of significantly reducing recoil while still delivering sufficient velocity and energy to reliably kill deer (with proper shot placement, of course) at 200 yds. or less. On the other hand, you referred to the hard rubber butt pad on your rifle being no help. If recoil is an issue with your light-weight '30-06 then I highly recommend acquiring a good recoil pad, like the Sims "LimbSaver" (though Pachmeyer makes a good alternative as well) no matter what ammo you end up using. I had the same problem with my synthetic stocked Savage 111 .30-'06, but after equipping it with a LimbSaver it kicked no worse than my son's Savage in .243. Then, to encourage myself to practice more, I started using the Managed Recoil rounds at the range. The result is that I can easily put an entire box of 20 rounds through the gun in a very short amount of time with no discomfort to my shoulder at all. The gun is actually a pleasure to shoot with that combination.

    While I don't use the MR rounds in the field (I'm using Federal Fusion for now) it's not because I think there's anything wrong with them. Quite the contrary. I'm confident that they would perform quite well at the relatively short distances (100 yds. or less) at which shots generally present themselves in my part of TX. But with the LimbSaver pad there's just no need to reduce the recoil further for the 1 or 2 shots (at most) that I'll be taking in the field in a single day. However, if you were to find the recoil from regular loads to be uncomfortable even with such a pad installed, and the 125 gr. Express loads didn't do the trick, then the 125 gr. MR loads might be a good option for you.
  4. Blackfork

    Blackfork Participating Member

    Aug 26, 2006
    East Texas

    Bullet placement is the key but you don't want to get too light. I worked up a wonderful 7mm Mauser load using Sierra Matchking 100grs, but they didn't knock down one deer. They would shoot X ring at 200 yards and it was like shooting an air rifle in my Ruger #1.

    Don't forget to zero for the exact round you will be using. Shooting one round in practice and another round hunting might make for a miss.
  5. critter

    critter Senior Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    southeast AR
    Not to worry. A 30 caliber bullet in 125 gr will do just fine. I use 125 gr Nosler BT's in my Contender 30-30 (14" barrel) to deer hunt. I have taken quite a few with it and all are one-shot kills-so far. Heed the part about bullet placement and you will do just fine.
  6. aspade

    aspade Member

    Apr 2, 2006
    People's Republik of Maryland
    I haven't shot that 125 grain Remington load, but my experience in .308 is that 125 grain ballistic tips kick a little bit less than 150 grain loads. Not night and day, but enough to notice. I imagine the difference would be similar in 30-06.

    I would not choose that Remington load for deer. At close range I expect it would ruin a lot of meat. At long range, that stubby flat base bullet (listed BC 0.27) would shoot no flatter than a 150 grain, and do very poorly in any wind.

    There's no reason to put up with a hard rubber pad on any gun. Take that POS off and put on a Limbsaver.
  7. browningguy

    browningguy Senior Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    Houston, TX
    I think you would be better off with the Managed Recoil load, a lighter bullet at slower speeds.

    The 125 gr. load running at velocities the '06 can drive it (3140 fps) is going to crater pretty spectacularly at any reasonable range is my guess. Normally those light bullets also do not give the penetration of 150 gr. loads, running them fast is probably an issue for deer size game. The '06 is in a whole different league than the 30-30 in velocity.

    Velocity (ft/sec)
    Cartridge Type Bullet Muzzle 100 200 300 400 500
    Remington® Express® 125 PSP 3140 2780 2447 2138 1853 1595
    Remington® Managed Recoil® 125 PSP CL 2660 2335 2034 1757 1509 1300

    Short-Range Trajectory
    Cartridge Type Bullet 50 100 150 200 250 300
    Remington® Express® 125 PSP 0.0 0.6 zero -1.9 -5.2 -10.1
    Remington® Managed Recoil® 125 PSP CL -1.2 zero -1.7 -5.2 -10.9 -18.9
  8. wvhunter

    wvhunter New Member

    Oct 18, 2006
    i think ill try to invest in a limbsaver and go from there. i would rather not drop down past a 150 grain if possible. i think my problem is that im a fairly new shooter and i need to get past the flinch reflex. i can shoot pretty well at the range, but its a different story when your in the field and dont have a nice rest to shoot from.

    and no, i dont plan on taking shots out past 200 yards. i figure for now, i wouldnt feel comfortable shooting past 150. maybe ill try some lighter loads at the range and make sure to zero in with my field ammo before heading out on a hunt.

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