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AR build in 30-30? Anyone?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Rail, Mar 2, 2014.

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  1. Rail

    Rail Member

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    I am starting out on a new build and I plan to consider all options. This may have been covered elsewhere and if so - please by all means point the way - I just haven't found it yet after looking.

    At first I thought to build your basic 7.62x39 mainly because of cost and ballistics, but that was back when I thought there was little difference between it and the 30-30 deer round. Since I have been disabused of that thought now, I am looking for input from those who have a lot more builds than I under their belts as to what the:

    1. stumbling blocks would be in barrels, mags or ramps
    2. reasons for dropping the idea altogether - pressures, ballistics, range etc
    3. benefits would be
    4. bullets, loads and practical employments would be

    I don't hunt a lot but I do tend to think of the round as a decent deer hunting round, easily found and useful and so started to think of this as a possible build. Cheap doesn't hurt and useful is always good when it comes to something other than paper punching. And I have no aversion to that either..;)

    Since the mags are not at all the tube of a model '94 a whole range of projectile types are opened up as well as weights and powders so - jump in!

    And - I don't mind being told it's ridiculous if there is a valid reason to back it up - I'm not, however, trolling for trolls. If you want to tell me to build a 300 Blackout or whatever your favorite AR build platform or most appropriate deer caliber is, great but that's been addressed elsewhere - I'm not looking for that either. I'm just getting old enough to want to experiment a little and I have always loved the 30-30 cartridge and would like to do more with it.
     
  2. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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    It's ridiculous.
    Max OAL for a 5.56 is roughly 2.27" in order to feed through the magazine.

    The Shortest .30-30s I've loaded were 2.45".
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
  3. yamahawarrior89

    yamahawarrior89 Member

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    Good luck

    The round I'd too long and the rim is gonna suck. I think the 5.56 is 2.26 oal and you can get up to 2.35 with special mags. The 30-30 is longer than that I think.
     
  4. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    30-30 is the same length as .308 but has a rim that makes it hard to feed from a box magazine. So why not just go with .308?
     
  5. rbernie
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    rbernie Contributing Member

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    You'd have to use an AR10 platform, arrange for custom magazines and bolt faces, deal with rim lock, and get virtually no bolt life due to the fact that the larger rim of the 30-30 wll remove most of the bolt face from the AR10 bolt.

    You'd be better off downloading 308 if you want a big 30cal, or running a 300BLK or 7.62x39 if you want to stay in the AR15 platform.
     
  6. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    The 30-30 being a rimmed cartridge is a deal breaker.
    It won't feed in a typical straight or curved AR-15 type mag.

    And being 3/10" too long to fit in the .223 magazine is another deal breaker.

    The .30 Remington is a rimless 30-30.
    But it is too long too.
    And brass is near impossible to find anymore.

    rc
     
  7. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    You could build an AR-10 in .300 savage if you wanted. Then it would be nicely weird.
     
  8. Rail

    Rail Member

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    Length is one of the things I was looking for direction on, but these rifles are built in every conceivable caliber - I wasn't just going to say no way is that possible just because of a chamber size. Every caliber build has its issues. The .308 I thought about but the 30-30 is a very mild version so to speak of the .30 cal crowd. Can be very pleasant to shoot. Its one of the reasons I like it so much. I could dumb down the load of a .308 but all that has been done and I am not trying to re-invent the wheel.

    Besides - if one didn't build the thing because it was different - we wouldn't be Americans.. :) Does anyone have an idea of how much work it would take to adapt say a 7.62 mag for 30-30?

    I can appreciate the rim issues and that's exactly the type of issue that concerns me. Will the cartridge work effectively, feeding, chambering, extracting without a tremendous amount of smithing. I like smithing, but not necessarily just to prove a point. Feeding the rimmed cartridge is going to be an issue and maybe a waste of time. The problem of finding brass would not be an issue with the 30-30 unlike the 30 Rem...very sad btw to have lost that option
     
  9. Corn-Picker

    Corn-Picker Member

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    If you want an elk capable 30 caliber AR-15 check out the 300 OSSM. As I understand it, it's a 25 WSSM necked up to 30 caliber, uppers built and ammo sold by Olympic Arms. It's faster than an 06 loaded to factory levels, over 3,000 FPS with a 150 grain bullet.

    Note: I have no experience with that round or Olympic arms, the product could be the best thing ever or a giant turd for all I know, but my understanding is that it's the most powerful round available for the AR-15 platform.
     
  10. Rail

    Rail Member

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    I have some experience with Oly Arms and it wasn't all bad. A great barrel amongst other things, but rarity of the round I would like to avoid. I may just find that the issues surrounding feeding and extracting are enough to nix the project and that's ok, but I'd like to give it a fair shake in 30-30.

    I'll look into the OSSM though and thanks for the tip.
     
  11. Rail

    Rail Member

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    Ok, so I did a little reading on the OSSM and like most super shorts there is a lot of talk about the value of short and fat which I won't deny, but there seem to be a few issues with accuracy. They don't seem to be short on fun though, but as with most wildcat rounds they will have to garner a following to put them up against a really old/popular round. Still interested but surprised that Olympic couldn't get their barrel better in line with the ballistics. Odd given their history. And yes, I do know all about the Oly haters, just never was one myself maybe because mine ran very well.
     
  12. MistWolf

    MistWolf Member

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    That's very true. We also know when to give something up for a bad idea. The problem with adapting an AR to the 30-30 is that the 30-30 is a rimmed cartridge. If they are not loaded exactly right, with the rim of the top cartridge ahead of the one below it, they will no feed. If you were to adapt the 30-30 to an AR, it would be better to convert the cases to being rimless.That's a pile of work unless you can convince a case maker to produce them.

    But is it the 30-30 case you want or 30-30 performance? If the latter, let's take a look at what's already been done so as to not have to re-invent the wheel.

    The 7.62x39 is to the 30-30 what the 308 or maybe 300 Savage is to the 30-06. The 7.62x39 is only a couple of hundred fps slower than the 30-30. With good bullet construction, the 7.62x39 will have terminal performance close enough that the critter it puts down wouldn't know the difference. However, the steep taper of it's case combined with the limits of the AR magwell and bolt face diameter means it's gonna take some tinkering to get everything to work.

    Another round that fits in the "30-30 Lite" category is the 300 BLK. It takes very little, if any, tinkering to get it up & running. While the developers made sure it would work with heavy subsonic bullets for better suppression, it works quite well at supersonic velocities. It matches the 7.62xs39. The 300 BLK would make a superb 30-30 Lite.

    If you want more oomph, there is the Wilson 7.62x45. Where the 300 BLK uses a shortened 223 case, the 7.62x45 uses the full Monte. It's simply the 223 case necked up to take a 30 caliber bullet. While not as popular, ammo and cases are available.

    Myself, if I wanted a modern 30-30, I'd go with the 300 BLK. Ammo is available and has good factory support. It fits in an AR15 size action which helps to keep the rifle compact and light. If I wanted a little more, I'd look at Wilson's offering. Adapting an AR to take the 30-30 would be an interesting undertaking and you'd learn a lot. But it will require an 308 AR sized action. The rifle will be just as heavy as a 308 AR but lacking the ballistic advantages. In the end, I don't think the juice would be worth the squeeze
     
  13. browningguy

    browningguy Member

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    It's not the worst idea I've ever heard, but it's definitely in the top 2-3.
     
  14. Rail

    Rail Member

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    :) Have to smile browningguy, but a reason or two would be nice. And Mistwolf - I felt the rim to be the main issue - I had kind of hoped that someone would come up with a solution. I had looked at the Savage method for dealing with the magazine issue, and no, I don't want to do a ton of work to just make it happen. I'm not the kind of guy who would be proud to own the only one.

    I have already considered and still am thinking about the 300 and the 7.62x39 which I have nothing against. Either of them really, but I would stick with the common 7.62x39 round for the reasons above.

    If there are no suggestions then I'll put it to rest. Mags are a finicky proposition on the best of days, and maybe this isn't one of them.
     
  15. elephant_man

    elephant_man Member

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    I didn't bother skimming the fifty parrot posts about "the rim problem," but if you want to take a look at the savage/stevens 340 magazine you'll see that it is a non-issue (for hunting purposes anyways) :)
     
  16. MistWolf

    MistWolf Member

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    The best solution to the problem of rimmed cartridges from getting hung up while feeding from a box magazine is to either convert the cases to a rimless configuration, or add a belt.

    A bit of trivia- The British chose to add a belt to solve the problem. It was a solution that not only made feeding from a box magazine easier but also accommodated the extracter/ejector of double rifles. To adopt a double rifle to a belted cartridge, the rifle maker only had to bore the recess for the rim a bit deeper. Most American magnums are based on the 300 Holland & Holland
     
  17. dodo bird

    dodo bird Member

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    Add me to rediculous, I want a .44 mag ar.
     
  18. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    44 mag has been done. Tromix made them.
     
  19. dodo bird

    dodo bird Member

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    Really? How did it work?
     
  20. Rail

    Rail Member

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    See above. I did look at it since I assumed that many of the issues a bolt 30-30 would encounter would apply. Their design didn't make me too happy with the prospect however :p

    And I don't think the issues of the .44 Mag are as pressing as those of a tapered rimmed round. Not that I don't like the .44 magnum, just not for this project.
     
  21. witchhunter

    witchhunter Member

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    Quit it! Either get a 30 AR Remington or a Winchester 94 in 30/30.
     
  22. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

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    If your set on 3030 it mayake more sense in an ak or sks variant. But then your just swapping apples for apples to not gain anything other than expense of factory ammo.

    Why 30-30?
     
  23. rbernie
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    rbernie Contributing Member

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    Well, no. The 'rim issue' is not just the rim lock problem; it is also the fact that the AR15 bolt face won't readily accommodate the large rim of the 30-30. You might could get an AR10 bolt face opened up to fit the 30-30, but there wouldn't be much left of the bolt when you'd be done.....
     
  24. Rail

    Rail Member

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    I actually did if you look...and I never started (the build that is) - I was looking for input as a matter curiosity. Surely you don't mind if I answer people's posts?

    Besides - I have the one, and I don't want the other even though they do appeal. But you are welcome to buy one or the other if you like. As I said I will likely do the 300 or use the AK round.
     
  25. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    Dunno 'bout that. I have an upper made by Dedicated Technologies in .358 WSSM. Shilen Select Match barrel. Shoots five into about .5". 200 grains at about 2,700 fps. Works with a standard AR lower. We took a deer at 279 yards with it. Bang-flop.

    The .30-30 idea makes less than zero sense for a lot of reasons,
     
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