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IMR3031 for 30-30 ftx bullet

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ChefJeff1, Sep 17, 2009.

  1. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Well-Known Member

    Can i use IMR 3031 with the hornady 160 gr ftx bullet in my 30-30? I'm having a hard time finding data on this bullet other than the hornady site and i don't have any of the powders listed.
  2. ants

    ants Well-Known Member


    Use any published data for the 170 flat nose bullet.

    3031 is on the fast side, but works so well for lever action 30-30. My first 30-30 powder in 1972, it's still one of my favorites. Use any published load, there are thousands of them. The lighter bullet will be 60 fps faster, same pressure.

    Also RL-15, which is probably one of the most accurate powders I ever used in 30-30 (32.6 grains RL-15, crimped at cannelure).
  3. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Well-Known Member

    Here's a link to Hornady's site with FTX data in different calibers.


    My pay site lists 30.0gr of IMR 3031 as a MAXIMUM load under a 170gr jacketed bullet.
    Start at 27.0gr and work up to be safe.

    Last edited: Sep 18, 2009
  4. Taildragger-J3

    Taildragger-J3 Well-Known Member

    I didn't know the FTX bullets were available separately. I've been using 3031 in my 30-30 with the traditional flat nose bullets for a while. I'll have to see if I can put my hands on some of these FTX's.
  5. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Well-Known Member

    ok, 27 grains and work up, sounds good. As far as length and bullet seating, seat to the cannelure and crimp?
  6. youngda9

    youngda9 member

    Seat back from the rifling for best accuracy, this will make the cartridge greater than the 2.55"oal limit for a 30-30...but if it cycles in your gun so what.

    Some guns like to be .005-.010 back from the rifling, some more, some less...mess around with the seat depth to see what your gun wants.

    Crimping on the cannelure will set the bullet way too far from the rifling and accuracy will suffer IMHO.
  7. ants

    ants Well-Known Member

    Crimping at the cannelure helps keep the bullet from moving in a tubular magazine. That may or may not be a consideration for you, but it's standard wisdom for tubular magazine rifles.

    I have never found that seating close to the rifling helps any of my 30-30 lever action rifles gain accuracy, but your rifles may perform differently.

    Each reloader must make his own decisions, as long as you stay safe and happy with performance.
  8. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Forget seating to the rifling in a lever-action.
    In all likelyhood, the OAL will be too long to function through the action.
    That will lock up the action tighter then a bulls patootie if it's too long to clear the receiver mag tube hole.
    It probably won't help accuracy all that much anyway, if at all.

    Besides that, you have to crimp for use in a tube magazine so you have to crimp in the cannelure.

    Anyone who says you don't is giving you bad advice!

  9. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Well-Known Member

    ok, so crimp to the canellure. I loaded some 150 gr remington sp last night and the oal in my books is nowhere near the cannelure. I seated to the cannelure anyway and crimped. Will these have pressure problems from being seated too deep? It seems the cannelure is the natural place to seat to. Thanks to all for your patience and info, you're awesome!:)
  10. ants

    ants Well-Known Member

    Thus, the value of gathering a whole library of loading data. Mull through all of them to gain a consensus on powder charge, cartridge length, and primer to make your wise decision. Bullet manufacturer's data is generally specific to their own cannelure.

    If you start at the starting load and work up slowly, your rifle will tell you if your OAL is going to be a problem. But 30-30 is such a low pressure round that seating to the cannelure is unproblemmatic in virtually every case, in my humble experience. You do your research, make a wise choice, start at the starting load and work up.
  11. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Well-Known Member

    If your case length is nominal, or trimmed to recommended min spec. =(2.039" for the .30/30), the cannulure IS THE CORRECT PLACE TO CRIMP THE CASE.

    Hornady spent many thousands in U.S.Dollars researching these bullets to get the spec's right. Don't try to second-guess them.

    RE: IMR3031
    This would not be my powder of choice due to the bulk density of this powder. With the long shank and short amount of the bullet exposed due to the ogive of the FTX and elastic tip, the amount of powder the case will hold of the bulky extruded powder is going to limit velocity potential. I would expect that about 27.0-27.5gr of IMR3031 is all that you're going to be able to get in the case under the FTX bullet. This will give you about 2,000-2,100fps from a 20" bbl.

    The best reloading powder for the FTX are Reloader15 @ 35.0gr, or Win748/BLC2, at ~36.0g. These should approach the performance of the factory loads at ~2,300fps.......(start 10% below these charges and work up for YOUR rifle....)

    I strongly suggest you seat the bullets in one step and then lightly crimp them in a second step, preferably with a Lee "factory crimp" die.
  12. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Well-Known Member

    Ants, thanks, I'm slowly building up a library, I just got the lee book. I like the Nosler book because it tells a little story about each cartridge and gives some caliber specific tips. Some 30-30 nosler partitions are in my future. My cannelure question was with the remington bullets, not the ftx's. I haven't tried the FTX's yet cause I'm still checking this forum for info and such. I did seat to be able to crimp in the middle of the cannelure. I figured that's why it's there, might as well use it.
  13. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    The Hornady site lists a C.O.L. of 2.535" so I'm guessing that the OAL when you crimp in the cannelure. If you're worried about overcharging with IMR3031 all you need to do is check your source against the Hornady site and see if there's a difference in charges between the 2 sources. If there is you can figure the percent of change and use that number to extrapolate the MAX charge of IMR3031 using the COL Hornady uses.

    Did you see the note on the Hornady about the possibility of having to trim the case below SAAMI specs?
    The SAAMI trim length of a 30-30 case is 2.039" and Hornady trimmed their case to 2.029" when loading to a 2.535" COL with their 160gr FTX bullet..
  14. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Well-Known Member

    I'm using the lee trimmer set up. It trims at a set length and that's it. Boy, these FTX bullets are sounding kinda high maintenance to use. I checked the Hornady site and I didn't see IMR 3031 listed.
  15. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    What I meant was to compare the charge numbers on the Hornady site against the same powder charges on the Hodgdon Load Data site and do some Math to figure out where to start with IMR3031.

    I really don't feel this is so much harder than most other calibers and combination of components when you first start working with a new caliber. The initial setup work is always a little involved but once you get it all worked out it's a breeze. (keep good notes! LOL)
  16. youngda9

    youngda9 member

    Check your OAL before and after you use the LEE factory crip. This die can change the OAL when criping. Check the variation, you will be surprised. Variation leads to poor accuracy.

    OAL measurement on an exposed lead tip bullet is not an accurate way to measure. Measure to the 30cal point on the ogive to give best results.

    I can't believe people don't recommend spacing to the rifling...I guess the benchrest guys are flat out wrong. ?
  17. KAB55

    KAB55 Active Member

    I'm loading 30.0 grains of IMR4064 and it's a good accurate load out of an older mod94 lever action. Chronos at 2000 fps. Seated to and lightly crimped in the cannulure. I have the cases trimmed to the normal trim length, not shorter as hornady suggests, no feed problem and no pressure problems either.
  18. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Well-Known Member

    Loading bench-rest ammo for a non-saami spec. chamber for maximum accuracy is a totally different discipline from loading hunting ammo for a hunting rifle that is intended to feed reliably and chamber easily.

    However, I still find that my Marlin l/a rifles with ammo seated to function (ie: to cannulure) give up NO accuracy loss as long as proper bullets are used.

    The Hornady FTX is a highly evolved projectile. Hornady also originally intended to only produce this in .30/30 "Factory" ammo. However, it's popularity has far exceeded it's original estimates. So much so, that it's spun off two factory cartridges just to optimize the performance of both rifles and ammo. (.308MX, and .338MX ). I really DO want a .338MX ! Not that I NEED it, mind you.....

    Being a left handed shooter, I especially like leveractions, and the Marlins in particular (note I stated left-handed shooter, but not left-handed otherwise due to left dominant eye).
  19. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    This isn't ammo being made for a bolt action benchrest rifle, this is ammo for a levergun. If you "space to the rifling" you will probably have problems cycling the ammo because of the way the levergun feeds the next round. The benchrest guys are correct when shooting ammo made specifically for their bolt action rifle. The same rules do not apply for leverguns.
  20. youngda9

    youngda9 member

    GooseGestapo and ArchAngelCD:
    Ensure it reliably feeds in your rifle. If not, reduce length a bit. Your issues have just been solved.

    How do you reply with quotes in this site anyways?

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