View Full Version : Reloads chamber in my Garand, but not my bolt rifle?
I finished loading my first trial of reloads for 30-06 tonight, and ran into an issue I wanted to ask the forum here.
Brass is once fired HXP.
Bullets are Hornady #3031 150 gr soft point
Primers are CCI Large Rifle
Powder is 48gr of Varget
I measured all brass, and all was less than the max case length of 2.494". Some was close to that length, but all was less than max case length (between 2.48 and 2.49").
I seated the rounds to 3.21" COAL, and did not crimp.
I am using Redding dies.
All rounds were full length and neck sized.
My issue is this... Load them into an enbloc clip and they all load and chamber and eject perfectly fine in my Garand (doing hand cycles). When I load them into the magazine of my Tikka T3 rifle, the bolt will not close on the rounds. At least, there is a lot of resistance. I have not tried forcing it. This rifle will chamber HXP, but it does take more power in closing the bolt than normal commercial rounds.
I marked up a bullet with a marker and tried again, and there were NO marks on the actual bullet. Which tells me, the issue is with the with the brass??? Should I crimp? Should I trim it further back?
What do you all think? Should I trim the brass back? Crimp? Put some elbow grease behind closing the bolt on my Tikka?
Any advice would be appreciated.
If your sizing die is really a full length die and it was properly adjusted (usually means it hits the shell holder), the case should fit in ANY firearm.
Try taking just a sized case and do the test again. You should also have a case gauge for the very purpose of checking your sizing die.
There are two things that are of concern: The diameter of the resized case and the location of the shoulder (headspace). Again, this is why you should have a case gauge.
Thanks. I think I have more room to lower the FL die in the press... I will try again with some empty brass and see what results I get.
Headspacing is a critical dimension and it is totally determined by how far down the die goes. In a perfect world, headspacing would be correct (to SAAMI standards) when the sizing die 'just' contacts the shell holder.
Since the 30-06 (and almost every other bottle neck cartridge) headspaces on the shoulder, it is very important that it be pushed back a little during resizing and this won't happen unless the die bottoms out.
The only way you can be certain the shoulder is correct is with a case gauge.
FL sizing means the die is touching the shell holder for return to factory specs. Of course this can vary w/ every chamber. Try the die touching the shell holder. This should be how the ammo goes for the M1 as well.
Your Garand most likely has a much longer chamber than does your bolt action. When you fire a round in the Garand the shoulder of the case is probably expanding forward .008 to as much as .010". The same case fired in the bolt action would not expand the shoulder forward more than .002-.004". You're probably not sizing the HXP Garand fired cases enough to push the shoulder back so that they chamber in your Tikka. I'd highly recommend a tool to measure the amount you push the shoulder back when sizing. The Hornady Headspace gauge set is inexpensive and will measure headspace on most calibers. It works by mounting on your calipers. The problem becomes that by sizing the Garand fired cases to fit your bolt rifle then the shoulders are actually pushed back too much for your Garand. This will lead to case stretching. Just watch your cases very closely for possible case stretching and stretch marks inside the case which can result in separated cases. Optimum would be to size the shoulder back about .003" from fired dimensions from your Garand to shoot again in the Garand which as you have found would be too long for the Tikka. Plus taking cases fired in the Tikka which have shoulders pushed forward probably .004" or less and push the shoulders back about .002" to shoot them again in the Tikka. But cases sized to fit the Tikka would probably have the shoulders pushed back about .006" too much for the Garand. Like before, just be sure to check cases closely for possible case stretching after sizing them down for the Tikka and shooting the same cases in the Garand. Shooting maximum loads in the Garand makes case stretching worse and normal loads for the Garand makes the case stretching issue less of a problem. I have the same issue as I load for a couple bolt action 30-06's and a couple Garands. I want all loads to function in all the rifles so I size the shoulders back as close to maximum as I can get to chamber in the bolt rifles and shoot the same loads in the Garands.
You don't need a special tool, just adjust the die so a fired case chambers in the Tikka. Then it will likely hvae too mcuh headspace for the M1, but if you are trying for ammo that fits both, that will be what you give up. Too much headspace will cause early case head separation, so watch for it on rounds fired thru the M1.
Don't shoot the same ammo in both guns. Set aside 100 or so cases for the Tikka. Get a different brand if you want so you can discern them. Get this for your Tikka rounds:
Neck sizing only for bolt guns is the way to go. Your ammo will be more accurate, your brass will last longer, and it won't need to be trimmed. Since necksized ammo probably won't function in you Garand, full-length size the Garand ammo following the tips from the more experienced guys above.
I have to agree Wisky. A precision bolt gun would get either hunting bullets or match bullets & neck sized or partial FL sizing. My M1s get ball ammo. Occasionally I'll run match bullets if the shooting really matters, but then the rounds are all FL sized for best functioning & safety reasons. You do NOT want a slam fire from a round w/ too little headspace.
It's a darn shame that brass doesn't come in different colors. Sharpie color on the base might work but uniformly different colors would be nice.
For .308, I need 3 colors: M1A, Rem 700, Steyr SSG and I suppose, more to come.
Headstamp is nice but trying to read them is problematic.
For the Tikka, I would use Lapua brass and neck size only. I use the Redding Competition neck sizing die for my 700 & SSG loads.
For the Garand, I would full length size and not plan on a long life for the brass.
I recently picked up a 1903 Springfield, which then led me to purchase an M1 Garand through the CMP, which then led me to purchase a Springfield M1A! It is hell growing old.:whistling:
I too am preparing to reload for both .30-06s so I picked up a box of .30 cal 150gr Hornady 3031. I really would like to use “ball ammo” but was unable to source .30 cal 150gr FMJ locally.
Any recommendations on a good source for .30-06 ball ammo?
I make my own, but CMP should be able to help you w/ ammo too. It's rpobably the old Greek stuff, but it goes bang. Reloading for the M1 is quite simple, I would go that route.
Fred, where do you get the 150gr FMJ bullets?
Fred, where do you get the 150gr FMJ bullets?
Well they will be 147gr-150gr FMJ. The mil spec ones are form 308, 147gr, the 150gr are often Hornady on sale when I find them. A friend of mine just got something like 10K pulled 147gr, bought by the #, so pretty cheap, about 8c each. Try Widener's, watch for on line sales. Feed the M1 some IMR4895 or sim burn rate powder, stay well off max loads & the M1 is quite easy to load for.
Found some H3037 (.308) 30 CAL 150 GR Full Metal Jacket Boat Tail $21.00 / 100 on Wideners, Secant Ogive Design.
While close the Secant Ogive Design does not seem to be the FMJ I find on Military ammo. I will keep poking around.
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