Along with trying out the new M1, had a chance to try the 7.62x54r light load in a Finn M91/30. Which demonstrated that these things can indeed shoot well:
5 rounds, 100 yards, Lee 180-grain gas-check bullet over 16.0 grains of 2400. Given a better shot, I think this might have tightened up a bit.
This particular rifle had been counterbored at some point to remove damage at the crown. Instead of the usual tapered or funnel-shaped cut, this one looked like they'd used either a straight cutting bit or a boring bar to cut straight back from the muzzle for about 2 to 2.5"; new square crown well back from the muzzle. Whichever way they did it, it worked.
I mentioned the H&R M1 liked the HXP ball ammo. I also tried out some of the 150-grain cast loads. At 50 yards, not bad:
The first shot is the low one, the others nicely clustered. But at 100 yards, got this:
First two low, the other strung vertically. I got very similar results first time I tried this load at 100 in a different rifle: first two low, the others pretty tight windage-wise but strung vertically. Maybe powder position affecting velocity, I don't know. According to the Chrony this load gives an average velocity of about 1900fps, and cycles the action with no problem. But unless I can figure out something to tighten this up, it's going to be a 'indoor range only' load for when I want to shoot the M1 there.
In other news, did some digging around and helped find some .32acp dies and bullets for the Pocket Hammerless, which makes the owner very happy; not only is that ammo a bit expensive, but, like just about every other centerfire pistol cartridge, it's sold out all over the place locally. Handloading will begin soon.