Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Range day

Partly for fun, partly to try out some loads. I wrote a while back about trying some cast bullets, sized to .309, in the M39 and getting surprisingly good results for bullets undersize for the bore. What I was trying with it was some bullets a bit more matched to the bore. But first, I tried some practice loads in .30-06 in the 1903A3.

I mentioned before the good things in general about light loads, but nowadays there's another: several years ago I banged up my shoulder in an accident(not motorcycle) and now there's only so many full-power loads it can take. Especially with the steel buttplate on the A3. So the load lets me shoot it a lot more with much less pain.

This load is the RCBS flat-nose gas-checked 150-grain bullet designed for .30-30, sized to .309". To put the shots at point of aim I had to set the rear sight to the 500 yard mark, which put it dead-on at 50 yards:

There's almost no recoil, and noise is low. Moved to 100 yards and got this with the first five rounds:

I moved the rear sight up one more click, which I think corresponds to 550, and that moved them up into the black:
The one that landed high & right I'm calling on myself.

Overall, for up to 100 yards this is a really nice practice load for this rifle, much better results than I really expected. Apparently that bullet and the 2-groove barrel really like each other.

On the 7.62x54, I picked up one of the Lee sizer setups for .311 to try out. This bullet, as cast, mikes at .310 very consistently, so I knew this wouldn't resize the bullet; but it would seat the gas check. So I ran 20 bullets through it and loaded them with the same load as before. 50 yards:

100 yards

Result, not really any improvement over the same bullet sized to .309. So, for better results with this I guess I'll have to get a mold for an appropriate bullet.


Anonymous said...

If you slug the barrel of your M39, I'll bet you'll find it's bored .300" and rifled .308". Those rifles were bored and throated for the Lapua D-56 bullet, (still in production) and are throated long so they will fire Soviet bloc ammo as well. Mine shot the Lyman 311299 in wheelweight metal as cast very nicely, Norma 7.62x54 spectacurlarly. Lapua D-56 bullets loaded in Norma brass was frighteningly accurate. Those bullets miked .308". Soviet and Russian made M-N barrels, on the other hand, will measure anywhere from .307" - .314".

Gerry N.

Fire said...

I love "Range Days". Nothing beats the smell of cordite, unless, of course, it's my perfume.

Firehand said...

Gerry, I did slug it: .310 across the grooves. From the sound of it, I'd love to find some of those Lapua bullets to try; just not by buying Norma ammo, DAMN that stuff is expensive.

Fire, not having sniffed your perfume, I'll take your word on it.

Fire said...


Next time you're at the mall, check it out, or maybe your girlfriend, wife, best friend...whichever fits, has heard of it.

Elizabeth Arden's "Arden Beauty".

The cordite can give that scent a run for it's money...but it's all in how you wear it.

og said...

You shot like that at 100 yards with iron sights? you DICK.

How big is that bull? it looks to be about 4"?

Firehand said...

1" grid on the paper, the bull on my 100 yard targets is 6". Unless I run out, in which case I use 5"(which happened that day).

And I'll take that as a compliment, thank you kindly.