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Cheapest 30 cal bullets?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by HK G3, Sep 8, 2009.

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  1. HK G3

    HK G3 Member

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    Hi guys,

    I've been doing the math on cost/round of .308 for plinking (though I suppose at this caliber, "blasting" is the more appropriate verb :neener:) purposes, and finding that given the current costs, hazmat fees, etc, I'm not really saving all that much money by loading this cartridge.

    I'm currently looking at a cost/round of about 27 cents. That's about 10 cents cheaper than Brown Bear, which is currently the cheapest commercially available ammo, but I'm hoping to try and do better, since there's also all the time spent at the bench to factor into the cost. Granted, I'm going to be working the load up with this new powder I got my hands on, and then it'll (hopefully) be a lot more accurate, but I'm still trying to be as frugal as possible.

    With this load, I'm going to be spending about 14 cents per bullet (145 gr FMJBT W/C), and they're relatively low quality. I'm not looking for bullets that can fly true for 400m and hit that 8 point buck square in the heart while expanding - I'm looking to put holes in paper and blow up some water jugs.

    With this in mind, does anyone have any recommendations as to where to buy really cheap, yet decent, 30 cal bullets that'll chamber properly each time? Last time I tried pulled bullets, I had jams every other magazine from deformed bullets not chambering properly.

    Thanks! :)
     
  2. Gadzooks Mike

    Gadzooks Mike Member

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    If you want some fun, general plinking, here's what I use in my .303 Savage - A box of #1 Whitetails from Missouri Bullets and underneigth that I stick 7 grains of Unique. It flies true and drops about 3 1/2 inches at the 50 yard mark. That load will work for just about any non-magnum 30 cal cartridge, but if you're using a 308 or something, you'll want to up the load just a bit, up to 9 or 10 grains. I use the same sort of thing for my microgrooved Marlin, but I had to buy some bullets sized to .311 to work with the microgrooves. That's good, cheap, fun general plinking up to about 50 yards or so.

    Good luck!
     
  3. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Member

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    Here's a site that has fairly cheap plinking bullets. They should not be used for hunting though. Get some soft points of similar weight for humane kills.

    If you order 2000, you get a free ammo can.

    http://www.rvow.com/m2 ball bullets.htm


    UPDATE!!!!! Check to see if the site is still valid as the site has not been updated since 2005.

    Email the guy.


    NCsmitty
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  4. otrman

    otrman Member

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    About cheapest I've found is from here, http://www.wideners.com/itemview.cfm?startrow=1&dir=278|281|727. 13 cents each in lots of 2000. Never tried for max. accuracy with them, just loading to feed a Saiga and a Cetme. Working on bullet #4000-6000 now and have yet to have a malfunction or one not go down range and stay on a silhouette target out to 300 yards.
     
  5. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Member

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    Run, don't walk from this place. Search out the name and you will see why. If you want to wait a year or 2 to get your bullets give it a try. Otherwise look elsewhere.
     
  6. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    www polygunbag.com click on bullets and scan down to 30 cal. there are many good choices for reasonable prices.
     
  7. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    River Valley Ordnance used to be a great place to buy bullets but the last time that site was updated was June 28, 2005 so I highly doubt they are still in business. I emailed them about 4 months or so ago and asked them if they were still doing business but never got an answer. Too bad, they were good back-in-the-day.
     
  8. HK G3

    HK G3 Member

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    Yeah, my friend still has a bunch of .224 bullets from them.

    They sounded like good people :-/
     
  9. jjohnson

    jjohnson Member

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    Pat's Reloading

    Oh, you can always look to www.patsreloading.com for deals. I've dealt with them before, they've been around for years, and I did get just what I paid for each time. I see they have some 308 that's resized for about a dime each.... I would buy from these guys again.
     
  10. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    HK is not looking for the absolute chaepest, he wants the least expensive bullet that will also work for hunting. At least, that's what I read.

    In that light, here's what I consider to be that bullet;

    http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct/?productNumber=1601168026

    [​IMG]

    The Remington core-lokt has been around for longer than I've been alive,(well almost, I feel older than dirt this morning). It CAN be a very accurate bullet, and when it hits a deer, they don't have long to live. Other weights are on the Midway site, but are on backorder. @ .20 cents, you have both accuracy and a deadly bullet.

    HK as for your comment that you charge yourself for time at the bench. I wonder who's paying you to do something else, if you weren't loading? To me, my free time is priceless, even sitting on my behind relaxing, which at 63 seems to be more that it used to be!:what::uhoh:
     
  11. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    I agree with snuffy. The Remington Core Lokt is a great bullet, usually accurate, and reasonably priced.
     
  12. HK G3

    HK G3 Member

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    You misread, I was looking for cheapest that are still not terrible and prone to jamming all the time. I already have a really good hunting load using expensive Hornady bullets. Now if only I could get a deer tag one of these years...

    I don't really charge myself, but at the same time, I factor it in when doing pricing. I feel it's a little dishonest to say, "Hey I just made 1,000 .45 Auto rounds for only $130!!!" when you spent around 12 hours doing so. It just shows my habitual note taking and categorizing things more than actually believing that I should be getting paid :p

    I really enjoy reloading and my time on the bench - the only part I don't enjoy is the trimming, chamfering, and deburring... that part I really dislike, and will probably end up getting a Giraud one of these days to make that more tolerable.
     
  13. falldowngoboom

    falldowngoboom Member

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    Thought I'd bring this back since I'm shopping for cheap 30 cal bullets as well. At this point, I might go with the mil-spec bullets sold at Wideners or possibly some Prvi Partizan 150g soft points from Grafs. Anyone have any experience with Prvi bullets?

    Any other suggestions for super cheap bullets for plinking? I could care less the quality, as long as they're >145g and lead core... and not too dirty if they're pulled...
     
  14. warnerwh

    warnerwh Member

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    The Remington 180 Core Lokt psp is an excellent bullet. As a matter of fact I see no point in trying any other bullet for deer or elk because these do the job as well as any other bullet. There's reviews of these bullets at Midway USA. I will concur what those guys wrote. Under an 1" consistency and inexpensive. I originally bought them as a cheap bullet, now I wouldn't try anything else.
     
  15. falldowngoboom

    falldowngoboom Member

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    Thanks for the recommendation, but I'm looking for really cheap stuff (< $0.13/bullet) exclusively for plinking. I use Hornady GMXs for hunting, so I've got that covered. :D
     
  16. RidgwayCO

    RidgwayCO Member

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    I recently purchased some pulled and polished 147gr FMJ-BT M80 ball from Hi-Tech Ammo for 12.7¢ a bullet (delivered), for use in an M1 Garand. Dan Johnson was great to deal with, and also sold me some virgin military .30-06 brass that dates back to 1955 (the year I was born). I'll have to remove the inert primers (at least I hope they're inert...) and remove the crimp, but that's not bad for 11.1¢ each (delivered). This is the second purchase I've made from Hi-Tech, and I'm a very satisfied customer.

    http://hi-techammo.com/
     
  17. NuJudge

    NuJudge Member

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    Buy the Giraud trimmer.

    If you enjoy time at the bench, take up casting. My almost-jacketed-velocity cast bullets come in at about 4 cents apiece, after a bit of investment and a lot of scrounging.
     
  18. evan price

    evan price Member

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    http://www.ohioccw.org/ Ohio's best CCW resour
    Pat's Reloading Supply in Ohio has 147-grain 7.62x54r bullets which were resized to .308 for under ten cents each in 2K lots. They shoot good in my rifles, for target ammo. Using bulk H335, range brass, and Wolf primers I can get my .308 ammo for twenty cents per shot.
     
  19. falldowngoboom

    falldowngoboom Member

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    Ridgway, thanks for the link! Will give those guys a call tomorrow and possibly put in an order. Shipping kills a bunch of the savings, though, but oh well...

    NuJudge, not so sure about going the cast route. I still want to be shooting full loads at full speed, otherwise I might just go to a 110g jacketed bullet. But someday, I might start casting my own, who knows?

    evan, I've been to patsreloading.com, but their bullets are STEEL CORE. A lot of ranges (including mine) won't let you use the stuff. Sucks because those prices are pretty darn good.
     
  20. Ed Harris

    Ed Harris Member

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    The cheapest shooting if you have a bolt rifle is to cast your own bullets and load mild charges of fast-burning pistol or shotshell powder which do not require a gascheck.

    I cast bullets using backstop lead that I get for free from the indoor range. I load the bullets as-cast and unsized after tumbling in Lee Liquid Alox. I save more money by keeping the loads below 1300 f.p.s. so they do not require a gascheck. The Ideal #308241, Saeco #630 or RCBS 30-150CM plainbased Cowboy bullets work fine, as does the Lee C312-155-2R designed for the .7.62x39, 303 British or 7.62x54R, which can be used in the larger bores or in .30s with worn throats without the GC.

    Use standard large rifle primers. NO case fillers such as kapok, belly button lint, cattail fluff or duck feathers are needed.

    In the .30-40 Krag, .303 British, 7.62x54R and .30-'06 boltguns I use 7 grains of Bullseye pistol powder across the board --- that's 1000 rounds per can of powder!

    It's OK to adjust the charge down to a starting load of 5 grains or up to 8 grains maximum, to get best grouping in a particular rifle, but I have found 7 grains works in most rifles. No muss, no fuss.

    To zero at 100 yards set the battlesight to 500 yards, for 200 yards set the sights at 800 yards.

    These loads are fun to shoot, are more accurate than milsurp ball ammo and they don't lead if the bullet casts large enough to fit the chamber throat and origin of rifling. If as-cast bullet diameter is over .312" you will need to size bullets .311" for most .30 cal. rifles, whereas the 7.62x54R Russian and .303 British will shoot best at .314" or larger.

    If the thought of using Bullseye powder in a rifle scares you, you can accomplish the same thing with TiteGroup, 231, 700-X or Red Dot in the same amount or use 8 grains of Unique, PB or SR7625.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2009
  21. Wilburt

    Wilburt Member

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  22. fireflyfather

    fireflyfather Member

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    Ed, I'd like to thank you for your recipes. I've been using either 7 or 13 grains of red dot (these days promo) in my mosin since I started reloading. I use the same powder for .38spl, and a limited amount of .357 and 9mm. I just got a lee loader in 12 gauge, and will be reloading the shotgun with the same powder too. Your load development over the years has let a new reloader (me!) start with and stick to one inexpensive powder for all reloading needs, saving me LOTS of money. I couldn't afford to shoot if it wasn't for your budget recipes.
     
  23. TooTaxed

    TooTaxed Member

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    Ed Harris has the answer.

    I have loaded thousands of Lyman #311291 170-gr cast gas check bullets for 100-yd practice in M1 Garands, .30-06 Springfields, and .30-30s. They should be cast hard...linotype preferred, wheel weights OK...no leading. Sized to .308 they are excellent for .30 cal; unsized they are fine for .303 Brit and 7.7 Jap. The last batch I bought (auction) was 2000 at 3 cents each. That equates to roughly six cents per loaded cartridge, or $1.20/box of 20.

    Let's see anyone beat that!:D
     
  24. qajaq59

    qajaq59 Member

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    Casting your own is the way to go. For example, the other day I stopped at a tire place and asked if he had any wheel weights. He said yup, but not much. It turned out he had 28 lbs and wanted $2. Once the zinc was sorted out, it was melted down, and the clips removed I had 20 lbs of good lead. The bullets I cast for my .308 weigh roughly 175.5 grains which gives me 40 bullets per pound times 20 lbs. Thats 800 bullets at .0025 cents a bullet. Now add the gas check for 2.6 cents and you have about as cheap a bullet as you are going to find. And of course you can cast bullets that don't need a gas check. which means you are virtually shooting free bullets, or darn close to it. And cast bullets can be just as accurate as jackets if you take a little care loading them.
     
  25. falldowngoboom

    falldowngoboom Member

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    You guys are making casting sound awfully tempting. What sort of speeds can you realistically push cast bullets, if you do use gas checks? 2000fps?

    My main thing is to shoot with full recoil, so I don't end up flinching when it's time to pull the trigger on a real animal.
     
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