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30-30 reloads - primer back out

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by goon, Aug 29, 2008.

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  1. goon

    goon Member

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    I've been noticing that with both factory ammunition and my reloads some of the primers are backing out slightly upon firing.
    On average, the primers seem to be backing out somewhere around .006 to .008 inches according to the best figures I could come up with.
    At first, I noticed this with handloads and thought that it was probably because I wasn't loading hot enough to get enough pressure to push the primer back in after initial expansion, but now that I see it with factory loads I'm wondering if it might not have something to do with headspace.
    BTW - I tested a primer only and upon firing and it also backed out .007 inches.
    Function on both my reloads and factory Remington 170 grain and Federal 150 grain ammo is fine and there are no signs of anything strange going on with my casings and no bulges showing up anywhere.
    Also, I've noticed variation in the thickness of the rims, which would seem to affect headspace as well.

    Does anyone have any experience or knowledge about this?
    If there's any reason to think my gun is unsafe I'll have to either invest in a set of headspace gauges or have it checked out.
     
  2. Larry E

    Larry E Member

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    The pressures aren't high enough to push the case back to the bolt face which is what makes the primer and case head level after firing. It's just an indication of low (safe?) pressures for a .30-30 lever gun.
     
  3. goon

    goon Member

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    That's kind of what I was thinking too. I've seen it in other lever action 30-30's but I still figured I should check into it.

    I really don't want to blow myself up.

    Thanks.
     
  4. scrat

    scrat Member

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    whats your charge. powder bullet primer. what are you using then whats your cartridge overall length.
     
  5. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    This is jostling an old memory in my brainmass. Are you shooting from a Winchester 94?
     
  6. scrat

    scrat Member

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    we need more info.
     
  7. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Member

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    I would check the headspace to be on the safe side.

    NCsmitty
     
  8. goon

    goon Member

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    Marlin 336, I don't know how old it is but it's a pre-safety model.
    I don't remember the OAL of the round but it's a Hornady 170 grain Interlock in a Federal casing. Charge is 33 grains of Winchester 760 with a Win standard LR primer. The bullet is loaded and crimped at the cannelure.
    I don't have any loaded rounds right now but my dummy round for this ammo is 2.54 OAL.
    Also, I'm getting the same thing with the Remington and Federal Factory loads and I've been seeing the same thing with the primers since I started loading for this rifle. As I said, at first I was sure it was low pressure. Not so sure about that now.
     
  9. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Member

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    That's not the best powder to use but it works. It's a little too slow burning to generate optimum velocity and pressures. I would guess that you have a small headspace problem but not a dangerous situation. The fact that just a primer alone backed out would indicate to me that you have some free space to the bolt face. The usual difference between a go gage and a no-go gage is about .006 with another .004 difference to a field gage. The fact that you notice some rim thickness differences just adds to the problem.

    NCsmitty
     
  10. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I remember now. I had the same issue with a Win 94, but with no signs of cratering, too much HS or overpressure. Apparently this is something that just happens with certain leverguns. I remember I had a thread on this topic on the levergun forum a few years ago.
     
  11. goon

    goon Member

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    Thanks.
    I know Win 760 isn't ideal but I figured it would be OK for playing around for reloading. I'll probably switch to 748.

    I don't see any signs of cratering or anything else strange going on with the brass. No strange wear or shiney spots or bulges or anything that indicates that anything strange is going on with my brass.
    The strange thing is that this is the same gun that I couldn't get reloading dies for. It took three tries to get dies that adequately resize my fired brass - I'd think that sloppy headspace would mean that it would be more tolerant of cases what weren't fully sized.
    Anyhow, there also isn't any evidence of any gas leaking around the primer.
    The primers are backed out just enough to be able to feel it with your finger or to just barely see the difference.
    I'm thinking I'm going to get it into a smith next week to have the headspace checked just to be sure.
    I wouldn't be surpised if it's messed up though - it's my luck.
     
  12. scrat

    scrat Member

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    748 or H4895 are very good powders to use.
    i just got finished loading 100 rounds of 30-30 as we speak. used 748 as im out of h4895
     
  13. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    NO no no people...His problem is that his chamber is a bit on the long side and he needs to move the case shoulder forward just a bit. If he (goon) is getting an .008" primer backout then take a .008 to .010" feeler gauge and set your resizing/decapping die off the shell holder by that much and try it again. If you still have primer backout increase the amount a little at a time until it stops. (My 60 year old Mod 94 requires .030" off the shell holder). You will be fire forming the case to fit your chamber. Be careful not to move the shoulder too far forward or you will have hard chambering. That, by the way, will be your indicator you need to move the shoulder back just a bit.

    The .30-30 headspaces on the rim, but it also needs to "fill" the chamber or you have the problem you are experiencing. Therefore you want to head space a bit on the shoulder to help push the chambered round back against the bolt face. I have not had any of my primers back out for the last 20 years and I have had this Winchester for the last 48 years...

    Try it ...It works...By the way...I use 32 grains of W-748 under a 170 grain Speer FNSP. Very accurate in my "Ol' Jack Handle" I might add...
     
  14. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    You have excessive headspace. Do what bushmaster said, But use a faster burning powder and stay away from a maximum load. The Win 760 does not build a lot of pressure at light charge weights.
     
  15. brickeyee

    brickeyee Member

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    Brass will last longer also.

    This is a common issue with reloading any bottlenecked case that headspace on a rim or belt.

    Reloading was NOT a consideration for these cases.

    Set the die for a minimum (a few thousandths) of shoulder bump when resizing.
    You want just enough to allow for easy chambering in your rifle.
     
  16. goon

    goon Member

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    For reloads, I'm not sure if I can do anything about it.
    I have my dies adjusted as tight as they'll go right now just to get my brass to chamber. This is the same rifle I had trouble getting the brass sized for. It took me three sets of RCBS dies to get something that will push the shoulder back far enough for brass to chamber in my rifle.

    Different question, but what is involved in fixing the headspace?
    Rebarrel or can something be done by maybe swapping the bolt?
     
  17. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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  18. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    Yer kidding...I agree with 243winxb. You have something wrong. Manufacturers tend to give plenty of room for various cartridges and their tolerences are loosely defined. If you have primers backing out the case head is not meeting the bolt face upon firing. .30-30 cases tend to grip the chamber wall quite well as was stated above, low pressure round. Hence the primer backing out. If you are just seeing a few thousands of backout I really wouldn't worry about it as long as the rounds are accurate. In my 60 year old worn chamber (.030"), to me, was a bit much. What I posted above solved the problem, but it sounds like you have a chamber dimention problem also...

    Loading hard...Are you sure you are not just feeling the extracter riding over the case rim? To some this might feel like a hard chambering...Insert the loaded round into the chamber by hand and see if the rim is making contact with the chamber mouth. Then close the bolt and see if it feels hard to close. That would be the extracter engaging the extraction rim of the case...
     
  19. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    I also agree.
    Call Marlin and find out your repair options.

    I thought from the start when you were having the sizing die problems there were extenuating circumstances with the rifle of some sort.

    That there just ain't normal with 30-30 chambers.

    As for replacing the bolt, setting back the barrel, gunsmith repair, etc.

    You would be far ahead money-wise to trade it off for another one that works right.

    It's new owner probably won't be a reloader.

    rcmodel
     
  20. goon

    goon Member

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    I would probably be better off to get rid of it but I just got it and I like it.
    And I'm sure it's replacement would also have something wrong. Every gun I buy needs fixed. It might not seem logical to anyone else but it makes just as much sense to me to get this one fixed and just keep it and like it.
    I'm planning to contact Marlin next week. If I have to get it rebarreled maybe I'll see if they have any 16" barrels around from their 336 Spikehorns that they could put on it.

    Bushmaster - it's the chamber. I had a thread on this a couple weeks ago and it's definitely something going on with the shoulder of casings. I did get my brass sized to the point where it's chambering smoothly.
     
  21. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    See, that's the part that don't make any sense.

    If you are headspacing on the shoulder (With the tight dies) instead of the rim, there can't be any excess headspace leaving room for the primers to back out.

    The whole thing is a puzzlement!

    rcmodel
     
  22. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I disagree that this is a serious headspacing problem. Excess headspace with rimmed rounds causes cratering, blown primers and incipient tears in the brass above the rim. I've seen it on some old Mosins, and believe me it's a heck of a lot more dramatic than just having the primer back out a tiny bit. You can check one way or another by having the headspace checked with a no-go and a field.
     
  23. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    Cosmoline

    The headspacing on the shoulder to solve primers from backing out in Winchester mod 94 due to a longer chamber was taught to me by a gunsmith. Mine were backing out .030". By moving the shoulder forward I solved my primer backout problem.

    It does seem that he has another problem besides the small primer backing out.
     
  24. goon

    goon Member

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    Yep, it's a tricky one.
    With my dies adjusted any looser than they are now I start to get trouble chambering. They won't go any tighter than they are right now either so it's a good thing I finally got the cases sized far enough.
    I'd also think that since the 30-30 headspaces on the rim, the primer shouldn't back out any no matter what.
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but there should only be the tiniest amount of space between the rim and the bolt face with the action closed, shouldn't there?

    Is it possible that I have a tight chamber and loose headspace?
     
  25. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    This load is below the recommended starting load, which is about 35.0 grains according to most of my reloading manuals.
     
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