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.30-06 cast bullets

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by kyhunter, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    I have a question for you cast bulet loaders out there. Ive never dealt with cast and have only loaded 190 SMK's for my '06. I found some oregon trail trueshot cast 200 grainers with gas checks. Once again I have no experience here. Anyone know if I could use these for plinking or big game hunting or are my velocitys gonna deform and/or melt this dudes in my barrel?
  2. 41 Mag

    41 Mag Well-Known Member

    Probably your biggest issue will be getting your barrel rid of any and all copper fouling before you start to run the cast through it.

    Once you have all the copper out there isn't much you have to worry about other than keeping the loads within the range of the lead and lube. If you can slug your barrel with a pure lead pill you can then measure how much difference there is between your bore and the bullets diameter. You bullets should usually be in the .310 - .311'ish diameter for a .308'ish bore.

    I don't have any OT specific data for rifles only for their handgun bullets. You could easily shoot them a note and tell them which bullet you have and they should shoot you back some data for it.

    You could also work up using H-4895 starting with the youth loads, or you could use Trail Boss as well. Somewhere there is also a load write up detailing the use of Unique for 30 cal loads as well. The overall goal will wind up being which way you choose to go. Your velocity ceiling is more than likely going to be in the 2000 - 2300fps range with the standard lube they use, but that will also depend on your bore and the powder as well.

    Hope this helps. I haven't quite made the jump to cast in my rifles just yet. I do have a few hundred from Missouri Bullet sitting on the shelf waiting for me to try them out though. I just can't seem to get away from my revolvers long enough to do so. :D
  3. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    thanks for the reply, much appreciated. The barrel is spotless and the gun is in a case under my bed. And the diameter of these mic at .310. The rifle Rem 700 ADL 22" barrel. Dedicated to hunting and a little paper punching. I thought I might swing these into a hard hitting cheap load. I was afraid to try my loads ive been using as they are around 2600 fps with 190 grainers and figured that would be a little warm. Thanks again, Guess ill find another route :scrutiny:
  4. BullRunBear

    BullRunBear Well-Known Member

    Actually, Oregon Trails should have the info you need and possibly load data for their bullets. I can't say about 2,600 FPS but you may be surprised at what cast bullets can do. I've used straight wheel weight gas check bullets at about 1,800 fps, if the books are correct. No leading and good accuracy in an '03 Springfield. If it matters, I used Lee Liquid Alox to lube them.

  5. StrawHat

    StrawHat Well-Known Member

    There are several forums devoted to cast bullet shooting. Look for them and you will find a lot of folks use cast bullets in all sorts of calibers.

    About the copper in the bore, you need to remove it. Otherwise you will have problems getting good results as the lead will be influenced by the copper deposits in the bore.

    With one exception, I do not shoot small bores so I can not comment on using 30 caliber bullets but all lead bullets follow similar rules. Match the alloy to the load, slug the bore to determine what diameter you need, cast your own bullets, etc. It sounds way more complicated than it really is.

    I quit using jacketed stuff in all of my shooting about 30 years ago. Developing a load is a lot of fun for me and once I settle on one load, I rarely attempt to find another.
  6. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    You can shoot plain base cast bullets which are 18 BHN up to 1800 fps in most cases without leading. Those Trueshot bullets are 22 BHN + and are also fitted with a gas check so I'm guessing you can push them close to the velocities of jacketed bullets. (probably 2500 fps or 2600 fps)

    The gas checks will protect the base of the bullet and since they are so hard I highly doubt they will lead your barrel as long as you don't push them too slowly. (actually at too low a pressure)

    Are you thinking of loading the 170gr .309" bullets or the 200gr 309" bullets?
  7. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    200's to hopefully keep similar velocity and POI
  8. USSR

    USSR Well-Known Member

    Good advice by 41 Mag. You want to make sure you are in the 2000 to 2300fps velocity range. The cast boolits forum website is a wealth of knowledge regarding what you want to do.

  9. Elkins45

    Elkins45 Well-Known Member

    About half of what I've learned about shooting boolets in rifles came from the Cast Boolets forum. The other half is personal experience. Here's some general conditions that seem to work for me.

    1. If the boolet is too small for the bore it will lead like a soldering gun regardless of the powder or lube used. Undersized boolets are the number one cause of leading.

    2. The lube on some commercial boolets is formulated more with shipping convenience in mind (not sticking together or falling out of the grooves) than actual performance in the bore. If you get leading it might be worth smearing a little Lee liquid alox on them and trying again.

    3. Boolets seem to perform better with a gentle push down the bore than with a shove, meaning slower powders generally give better accuracy if you're trying to achieve hunting speeds. Lots of folks get one hole groups using small loads of pistol powders, but they are usually only shooting around 1200fps or so when they do it.
  10. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    10-4 Thanks for the advice. I guess im going to cast boolits and hunta round. Might pick up some trail boss and give that a go near max charge and play with it from there. Never tried it but ive heard good things
  11. Adk Mike

    Adk Mike Member

    I shoot cast every week in a 30-06 and have for the last four years. Great Fun. My go to load is 13 grains of Unique behind a 31499 sized .312 in my US model 1917 or a 311644 sized .310 in a Sears rifle.
    Both shoot out to 200 yards good. Not recoil and cheap to shoot.
    I'm planning on something a little stiffer to tree stand hunt deer with. But my every day load is with Unique. Mike
  12. wgaynor

    wgaynor Well-Known Member

    I use 150 grain and 170 grain cast bullets in my .30-.06. Without a gas check, I'm good up to 1500 fps. With a gas check, a can push up to 2000fps without leading. Accuracy is great also.

    Lee's load manual has a good cast bullet section for .30-.06 and Lyman's Cast Bullet Manual has 2 pages of load data.

    Being that you're in Western Kentucky, if you want to try some of these 150 grain and 170 grain projectiles, send me a PM and I'll send you some to work up loads with.

    What Elkins mentioned about slow powders is true. I use Industrial Pistol Powder in my loads (same load data as Unique) and it works great.
  13. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    i aprreciate it wgaynor but im set on projectiles just didnt know about powder selection ann have never worked with cast before. i might stick to cheap jacketed now and give it a go with some unique. Im just worried about squib loads ive never even attemoted a weak or squib load :uhoh: Guess im picking up a cast load manual and studying at work. Might I ask where at in ky youre located or pm me if you dont want it public
  14. 35 Whelen

    35 Whelen Well-Known Member

    I've shot lots of cast out of my '06's; a couple of 03A3's and a 1903. The very first load you should try is 13.0 grs. of Red Dot. This load has performed very, very well in all of my '06's with a home-cast 205 gr. bullet that looks very similar to the Oregon Trail TrueShot 200 gr. That load will run around 1500 fps, but there's run for more velocity. Here's a few sample targets all fired @ 100 yds. with either issue or aperture sights (some of the larger groups were fired prone, unsupported):

    [​IMG] [​IMG]




    Another proven load is 15.0 - 16.0 grs. of AL2400 with the same bullet:



    I've run loads up to 2000 fps with the bullets cast from air-cooled wheelweights yielding around 12 BHN with very little leading, so the 22 BHN bullets should do fine at the higher velocities.

    I size my bullets either .310" or .311", doesn't seem to matter.

    Good luck!

    Last edited: Mar 13, 2013
  15. kbbailey

    kbbailey Well-Known Member

    great thread! awesome info!
  16. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    You will not be happy using Trail Boss with those ultra-hard gas checked bullets from Oregon Trails. If you're going to use Trail Boss or another pistol powder you will be better off using plain base cast bullets from Missouri Bullets instead.
  17. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member

    35 whelen

    wow thanks for the help. That really proves its viable for me to try this. Does the powder position matter or do you use dacron filler or anything? Or is quarter case fill (roughly) with the recipes you use enough that it doesnt matter?
  18. kyhunter

    kyhunter Well-Known Member


    Yeah I researched around and discovered this. Thanks for the advice :D
  19. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    The thirteen grain Red-Dot (The Load) load is very good. Make sure to flare your necks as necessary. I use a 190gr Lyman GC spitzer over that (most often without the/a GC) and I like it out of my 03-A3.
  20. 35 Whelen

    35 Whelen Well-Known Member

    Both powders I mentioned are relatively position insensitive, so I've never used fillers at all. Another powder I've used that I failed to mention is AA#7. I happenend upon an 8 lb. jug of it for a mere song, and on a whim decided to try it in my 7.5x55 Swiss. It's a fantastic powder that meters like sand and is also insensitive to position. I use around 14.0 grs of it.


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