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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On studying the ballistics of the 30-30, I have come across PMCs 150 and 170 grain flatnose rounds that are loaded to lower pressures (2159 fps at muzzle for 150 gr). I am wondering if anyone out there has used any of this ammo and can report how it has performed (recoil, accuracy, bullet performance on game). Experiences, anyone? :eek:
 

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why do you think the PMC 30-30 rounds are loaded to lower pressure? The velocity you indicate is about normal for this caliber.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Reference: Shooters Bible 2003 ed. p.480, 30-30 Win.:

Fed 150 gr hi-shok, muzzle velocity = 2390

Hornady 150 gr round nose, muzzle velocity = 2390

Norma 150 gr sp, muzzle velocity = 2329

Rem 150 gr sp CL, muzzle velocity = 2390

Speer 150 gr flat nose, muzzle velocity = 2370

Win 150 gr power-point, muzzle veloctiy = 2390

* PMC 150 gr flat nose, muzzle velocity = 2159

A significant difference in pressure and energy at the muzzle for the PMC ammo on the order of 230 fps compared to all the listed factory loads. Difference for 170 grain loads is similar.
 

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Yeah. I figured your statements were based on "published" velocities. My statements were based on actually having chronographed factory ammo in a 20" barreled 30-30 and, based on my experience and that of others, the published factory velocities are .....uh......optimistic?

Published velocities are probably taken in 26" pressure barrels, not real 20" sporting barrels, to the extent that they're not simply made up. Specs for ammo are set by SAAMI. Have you ever noticed that all ammo in any given caliber generally has the same, exact ballistics regarless of manufacturer or bullet type? Do you think that's just coincidental that they are all exactly the same?

Manufactures have always played with the numbers. When the 7mm Rem Mag came out 30 years ago the published veolicty for the 150 grain bullet was 3250 fps. Now the official published velocity is 3,050, about like what I get in my handloaded .270 Winchester with 150 grain bullets.

The .300 Win Mag's original published velocity with 150 grain bullets was 3400 fps. The last .300 Win Mag 150 grain factory ammo I chronographed in a 24" barrel was 3,150 fps, identical to what I get in my handloaded .270 WCF with 130 grain bullets and only 100 fps. faster than 150 grainers in my handloaded 30-06 Sprg. with only a 22" barrel. Was not much better with the 180 gran bullet. The 300 Win Mag with a 180 grain bullet was 2,985 fps. I get 2850 in my 30-06 with a shorter barrel and much less powder and much less recoil and much less muzzle blast. They have also dropped the published velocities for the 300 Win magnum.

Know why they dropped the published velocities? The proliferation of affordable chronographs among the masses made it harder for them to lie. That's why.

It dawned on me that 100 fps isn't going to make any difference in killing power, but the deafening muzzle blast of the magnums was going to make a **** of a lot of difference on the amount of hearing loss I would sustain when I was firing on game without ear protection. Also the 30-06 had a handier 22" barrel and five rounds in the magazine and I didn't have to worry about getting whacked in the forehead with the scope if I crawled the stock too much.

When I'm at the range, others frequently ask to use my chrongraph. It's nice to know that my 24" handloaded .270 equals factory 7mm Rem Magnums and my 22" barreled 30-06 is within 100 fps. of most factory 300 magnums.

Guess what. I have gotten rid of all of my magnum rifles except a .338 that has been long throated for 250 grain Noslers at 2,800 fps. This is 100 fps behind the other super .338's (i.e. .338 RUM and .340 Weatherby) and is as much punishment as I am willing to endure. I save this rifle for elk and moose and target shooting at the range. After the pounding of a few .338's, the 30-06 and .270 feel like toys. A great training technique. Even so, If I take the .35 caliber plunge and get a .35 Whelen AI, I may dump the .338 too.

I stand by my original statement. The published velocity by PMC for their 30-30 WCF with 150 grain bullets is about what you'll get with any factory 30-30 ammo in 20" barrels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Advocate, I appreciated your in-depth analysis of the published vs. actual difference in ammo performance. Not having a chronograph of my own, I must rely on published data. This is one reason for my original post; I wanted to see what real people have found to be true as opposed to just published data.

Have you actually chronographed the PMC 150 grain or 170 grain loads versus other loads? Can you give me any real figures to compare? I understand your statement that the published figures are "optimistic", and I agree with that statement. However, I believe that their may be some difference in the PMC ammo based on the "theoretical" numbers. It may not be as much as the published numbers, and it may not be any difference at all. But unless someone can actually measure it and tell me, or I can shoot some PMC rounds and others at the same sitting, I won't know for sure.
 

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I have not chronographed any PMC, but I chronographed some other 150 grain factory stuff years ago and it was about 2200 fps. I may be going to the range in the next week or twoand would not mind popping off a few for you. PMC loaded some flat pointed Barnes X bullets a couple of yeares ago. Is that the ammo you mean? Tell me what ammo you want me to test, post it back here and I'll endeavor to find some in a local gun store.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The specific ammuntion I am referring to is both the 150 grain and 170 grain PMC flat nose soft point rounds (PMC item codes are 3030A and 3030B, respectively). I have not found anyone in my area that stocks this ammo on the shelf, but I have found it on several websites. My local gun dealers are telling me that this ammo is currently out of stock from their suppliers. Outdoorguides.com lists this ammo for $11.10 per 20 round box, but I don't know if it is in stock or not.

Natchezss.com is also listing 30-30 ammo by Estate Cartridge Co.: a 150 grain load for $6.60/box and a 170 grain load for $5.49/box. I would be very interested to know how this ammo performs as well.
 

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Hunsman: I will chronograph a couple of different brands of 30-30 ammo, including the PMC if I can find it, and get back to you with how they did.

Just out of curiousity, why are you interested in the least powerful published loading of this already marginal caliber? Most people want the hottest rather than the coolest factory loads they can get. Just curious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This load, if I go with it, will be for my daughter who is just starting to shoot. The reduced energy will hopefully be a bit easier on the recoil, and there won't be a significant loss in killing power at her effective shooting range (@25-50 yards right now, hopefully out to 75 or 100 by next hunting season). I don't see the need to contribute to possible bad shooting habits (i.e., flinching) any more than we have to. She's small for her age and needs a lot of help to overcome an instilled fear of firearms she developed via an abusive birth father who misused firearms around her (she is adopted).

Thanks for your gesture in attempting to chronograph the 30-30 rounds. That's very generous of you, and my daughter and I will appreciate it. :grin:
 

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When I first got my 14" 30-30 barrel for my Contender nearly 10yrs ago now, I shot a BUNCH of PMC 150gr loads. I think I got them for around $7.50 a box or so back then and they shot great! I never felt any difference in recoil between those and other factory loads. They shot very close to 1" groups at 100yds with open sights.

I started handloading this round at the same time that I scoped the barrel, so I don't really have a good comparison between these and my handloads. I would not hesitate to use these hunting if I had to since they did shoot so well for me.

If you want to lessen the recoil, make a thin sandbag out of legs off a pair of jeans (about 6-8" square or so and only about 3/4" thick when flat) and drape this over the butt of the gun (between the gun and your daughter's shoulder). The combination of the weight of the bag and the deadening effect of the sand will all but eliminate recoil. Make sure she has some good, well fitting ear muffs since the "bark" is usually worse for new shooters than the "bite".

Good luck! ... Crayfish
 
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