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Shot a one inch group at 100 metres today with my Marlin .30-30 XLR, 24 inch stainless, grey laminated. Load is H4895 and Sierra 125 fnhp. Chronos at 2600 fps. Benchrest accuracy with a lever gun - love it! All you guys zapping hogs at 600 yds with your 6mm ThunderStick can watch in awe as I cream a marmot at 100 yards with my deer gun. Bullet is going slow enough that I can hear the Splock as the pasture poodle goes down like a bowling pin. You half mile guys can only hear the barrel-eating roar while I will be able to pass the Marlin along with its original barrel to my great grand children with stories of incredible 150 yard shots.
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You are not one of those guys that shoot 2 shot groups are you?
I use to win pocket change from guys at the range by telling them that I could out shoot their Wincheterby or their SavRemuger with my 30-30 Win. Once they bit I would take their money. It was in a 10" barreled T/C Contender pistol. You could cover 5 shots with a nickle at 100 yards. The 30-30 will shoot when you get everything right.
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2506: Three shot group. Never heard of anyone shooting two shot groups and talking about it. Don`t fire 5 shot groups with hunting rifles.
The .30-30 is a fun cartridge. The reloading die manufacturers say it is consistently in the top 10 of yearly sales despite the advent of all those long/short/compact/ultra/belted/supershort magnums.
After a Summer season of F Class (Provincials, Canadians, weight-shedding heat), it is a blast to go low tech with the ol` thutty thutty and get ready for deer season.
The XLR has the old-style deep rifling which is great for cast bullets, another fun dimension of the rifle.
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I loaded up some of those Sierra's with AA2230. They are very accurate in 336W 30-30. I was surprised, since they look like a pistol bullet with that big hole in them.
Also loaded up 150gr Remingtons and 160gr Hornady FTX.
The 336 can do 2 shots right on top of each other, but the third goes all over the place, unless I let the barrel cool significantly.
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My dad used a 30-30 for groundhogs for many years. He reached out on a couple of them, and shocked everyone who was there... a couple were out there around 400 yards. He would hit hogs regularly at 250 and 300 yards. (not saying that he never missed... there was plenty of that!)
Some quality handloads, and some luck on getting a good barrel from the rifle maker, and you're in good shape. There was a guy on BRC who was using a custom built 30-30 for a match gun, and doing pretty well with it.
Great short range cartridge.
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300 yards regular - the challenge is out. My local club has a 300 metre range where I test F Class rifles. Now I will be arcing .30-30 125s out there to get an elevation.
You cannot let a Marlin 336 barrel heat up or you get patterns, not groups. Those pistol-looking fnhps sort of plow a tunnel through a chuck.
Another accurate bullet is the Win 150 FN. Haven`t tried the pointy 160 Hornadys in the XLR yet.
Great replies guys! Thanks.
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5 shots with my 336W is damn near impossible to get any decent "group" but 3 on top of each other is regularly do-able at 100y.
I shoot a lot of gas checked cast boolits with Unique driving them around 1900 fps. For cheap trigger time you can't beat it with a stick, they run about 8c a round!
My longest kill shot with it is repeated 400y shots into a 14" square plate, but it's shooting about 16 feet high to get there with a cast bullet.
They're great rifles, and even that shallow micro groove marlin rifling will grip a good hard cast bullet enough to shoot deer and other critters without issue.
I should get some 125's to try, I've only shot 110s, 150s and 170's from it. The 110's are great chuck bullets when you single load the Vmax.
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bohemR13 - that's some fine shootin! I had to laugh a little when you mentioned the 16ft of elevation. It's awesome that you can hit that plate repeatedly at 400yds! Proof that hitting a groundhog at 300 + yards can be done, but it's challenging.
1000yardstare - definitely unleash that beast on the 300m target. You'll have a blast doing it. You may be surprised how well the thing can shot at that distance.
Unfortunately, I don't have any of the load data that my grandfather used for my dad's rifle, as I was still a young pup when my dad was shooting his 30-30 at hogs. (Grandfather passed away a few years back, so I can't ask him.)