.30 WCF at 85 ksi

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KWK
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.30 WCF at 85 ksi

#1 Post by KWK » Sun Nov 03, 2019 11:29 pm

Don't do this in your Model 94 Winchester. :shock:

Those are some impressive groups he's getting.

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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#2 Post by AJMD429 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 5:45 am

Wow. I couldn't see any thing that told what kind of gun he was using though.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#3 Post by KWK » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:41 am

A little looking with google finds the fellow describing his efforts and the bolt action he made over on a bench rest shooting forum.

His interest was piqued by work he'd done with a lever action, a Marlin, described in a post a little further down:
I have a Marlin 336 RC made around 1959. It is capable of shooting 3 shots in about .375" all day long. I never really tried more shots. I did shoot a .030" 3 shot group with it. It has the factory barrel, but I have made a lot of modifications to make it a fine rifle. The trigger in 1.5#. I modified the locking lug and lever so that the locking lug could be pushed higher. Because of the taper in the lug, this took the .010" headspace down to zero. I found this necessary for good case life since the Marlin action can handle much more thrust than the 94 Winchester. I modified the magazine tube to stagger pointed bullets so they wouldn't set against the primer. By doing this, I could put 125gr Ballistic Tips through it with a OAL of 2.8". Next the long OAL called for modifying the feed ramp to allow the cartridge to move back far enough to clear the magazine tube. To eject the 2.8" long cartridge without firing it required the ejector to be moved back further in the action. After all mods, I wound up with a 336 Marlin that launches 125gr Ballistic Tips at 2900fps and shoots into .375".
At the link I posted in the first message in this thread he describes why he thinks it okay to intentionally load his bolt action .30-30 to 85 ksi. That's the pressure of a proof load for the .308 Win. I guess it's nice to know the brass has plenty of reserve, even if most lever guns don't.

Interesting are his comments on BenchRest.com that the .30-30 brass takes high pressures better than most .30-06 brass.
Last edited by KWK on Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:18 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#4 Post by AJMD429 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:17 pm

Yeah, I always wondered what would happen if you took a huge barrel like a foot in diameter and chambered it for something like a 50 BMG necked down to 22 caliber. Obviously you would get some pressures in the six-figure range, but I'm betting the velocities would be incredible. You probably have to have a steel projectile to tolerate the centrifugal force needed for stability.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#5 Post by piller » Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:50 pm

Look up the Eargesplitten Loudenboomer. It was a Weatherby case necked down to a .22 using a steel projectile. It was just to see if they could reach 5,000 fps. Lead and brass bullets could not stand up to the rotational forces.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#6 Post by gundownunder » Mon Nov 04, 2019 6:07 pm

It has always been my understanding that the chamber and bolt hold the pressure, the brass case holds the powder and projectile, and acts as a seal to stop pressure leaking back through the action.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#7 Post by KWK » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:31 pm

Yes, the steel contains the pressure, but cartridges are not intentionally loaded past 65 ksi by the factories. (My impression was the primer was the weak link.) This fellow is loading his .30-30 to 85 ksi or more--and shooting itty bitty groups a loooonnnngggg way out there. I'd like to inspect the 336 he started his experiments on.

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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#8 Post by Rusty » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:55 pm

AJMD429 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:17 pm
Yeah, I always wondered what would happen if you took a huge barrel like a foot in diameter and chambered it for something like a 50 BMG necked down to 22 caliber. Obviously you would get some pressures in the six-figure range, but I'm betting the velocities would be incredible. You probably have to have a steel projectile to tolerate the centrifugal force needed for stability.
Years ago in SHOOTING TIMES Skeeter Skelton had an ongoing letter writing campaign with a fellow named Jug Johnson. IIRC that was one of the things Jug wanted to do, neck a .50 BMG down to a much smaller caliber I think it was going to be a wildcat called the .22-50 Jug. Someone else might remember better than I.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#9 Post by earlmck » Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:41 am

I wonder if you have to JB-weld the primers in those pockets to get a second loading? I always thought that 65k psi area was about where brass started giving you loosening primer pockets.

But I gotta' say I never would have suspected the 30/30 case would be a basis for such a shooter. I know my 219 Imp Zipper that I make from 30/30 cases gives me sticky extraction at loads that are plumb normal in my 225 Winchester with virtually the same case capacity. Maybe I should try some of those Starline cases next time.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#10 Post by KWK » Wed Nov 06, 2019 3:33 pm

earlmck wrote:
Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:41 am
I always thought that 65k psi area was about where brass started giving you loosening primer pockets.
Me, too. He says a rimmed case "forges" the brass around the primer pocket as the rim is formed, and this strengthens the primer pocket beyond just the effect of having that nice, wide rim surrounding it. Combined with Starline's brass alloy, he finds he can run extra high pressures with very good brass life.

As for the primer itself, I think his solution is to use machined rims to allow extra tight headspacing off them. This would minimize primer fore/aft motion through the firing cycle. His must be a skilled machinist, and I imagine his firing pin and its hole are optimized in shape to relieve stress in that area on the primer.

His argument isn't unreasonable, but in no gun I own would I dare try his loads. That he routinely bests 6 PPC target shooters using this relatively ancient cartridge case made me smile.

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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#11 Post by Ray Newman » Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:51 pm

Speaking about the 30 WCF – aka .30-30 – I have been told that it is inadequate for deer and at best only a 100 yard cartridge. However, these same shooters will say the 30 Herrett will easily kill a moose and they make it sound like if deer realize a 30 Herrett is in the woods, the deer head for the next county. :lol:

I have a few 30 WCF in the vault, and my favorite is a Browning-Miroku M1885 Traditional Hunter sporting a Leopold 6.5-20 scope. Shooting a 150 grain Berry copper plated lead bullet, Winchester LR primer, and 17.7 grains of IMR 4227, the rifle will hold 5 shots ½ - 5/8 inch at 100 yards. I am sure if the stock was a pistol grip and the rifle had a better trigger, sub half inch groups would be possible. Now this reminds to anneal the cases as such a light load does not completely seal the chamber and fouls the chamber and about the first one inch of the rifling. Load is very pleasant and economical to shoot and with neck sizing only the cases have been reloaded over 30 times.

Speaking for myself, I have always thought the 30WCF was an underappreciated cartridge and much of its bad reputation comes from the poor sights now found on most rifles.
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Re: .30 WCF at 85 ksi

#12 Post by AJMD429 » Wed Nov 06, 2019 6:33 pm

Ray Newman wrote:
Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:51 pm
Speaking for myself, I have always thought the 30WCF was an underappreciated cartridge and much of its bad reputation comes from the poor sights now found on most rifles.
Yeah - I think gun companies making rifles need to realize that their 'entry level' rifles are going to often be the first (and perhaps, only, or perhaps of many) rifle they own. Chances of hitting their targets and enjoying those first sessions would be far greater with decent aperture sights. I'd think they could get Williams to wholesale them onto the guns for $25 apiece or so, making the beginner's experience FAR more likely to be enjoyable and successful, and result in more future rifles bought.
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