- May 3, 2018 at 7:35 pm #50332
This might get a bit long…….
I have been casting pistol boolits for a long time, 35+ years now. Last year I cast up more than 500 pounds of lead for myself and the other Bullseye club members. It was mostly 32 wadcutters and H&G #68 45ACP boolits with a few 38 Semi and full wadcutters thrown in.
About, 5 years ago I started to shoot a few rifle boolits, was reading Larry Gibson, GoodSteel and several others posting on CB site, and their successful results. So I cast up boolits lubed and loaded them up. Results were so-so, one time really good, less than 2 inches at 100 yards, the next time 6-8 inch’s and terrible leading. Worked through all that and consistently getting 1 inch or less from a Savage rifle in 30-06 1-12 twist barrel. I could get into the 18-1900 FPS range with them, as soon as I would push the boolits(LEE 170-FN, a RCBS 180-FN and a Lyman 311466) over 2000 FPS I would get a few good shots and accuracy would fall off. I was lubing with BAC and Lyman NRA. As I read more about GoodSteel building rifles and then the success of those that he built the rifles for, especially “Dawn” and Larry’s success with the NOE 30XCB…..I took the plunge and ordered a Mold from NOE. Keep in mind I live on the North side of the 49th, so not a low cost solution when shipping and exchange are added to the Mold.
Casting with the 30XCB Mold and shooting them in the 1-12 twist Savage with BAC I was getting really good results. 10 shots at 100 adds were ripping one large hole and 2000 Fps was easy. Pushing up to 2200 FPS and results were dismal. Switched to Lyman NRA lube and still was having accuracy issues at higher than 2100 FPS. So stayed with 2000 FPS and BAC lube gas check and golf balls at 85-90 yards were “easy-peasey” dinging steel plates 8”x12” out at 150-200 yards was relatively simple, rifle would go 100 plus rounds without needing to clean, life was good!!!
Go down to Arizona for winter holiday and contact Larry last Christmas(2017). We go out to Sara Park with Dawn and a couple other rifles Springfield 30-06 and a Russian rifle, Larry has written lots about the three of them. After setting up the targets and giving the 300 yard steel “Piggy” a fresh coat of orange paint. We setup Dawn on the bench, OK, I watched as Larry set everything up, I was the helper bringing the “Stuff” from the truck. I settled in behind Dawn, dry fired a few to get a feel for things, I looked over at Larry. I could see a twinkle developing in his eye, I said “Well I guess I should see if I can hit the piggy” 10 shots later and a group less than 2 inches was splattered on piggy!!! I the shot a bunch of clay pigeons and for good measure the larger pieces!!! All at 300+ yards, we placed the clays on the berm behind the 300 line.
I was sold……Larry went through his cast process. You don’t get the results he does without really, really good boolits. We went over the lubing and then the loading procedure. When I left I felt like the “Gates of Higher Learning” had opened and I had been caught in the flood.
We got back home mid-January 2018 and I started to plan out the easiest way to get my own HV cast boolit slinger. After checking out what would be involved with having something built by a certain Southern gunsmith and then the importing of said “Masterpiece” I decided to get a local rifle builder to make a 1-15 twist medium Palma barrel and chose one of their 2 lug receivers with 20 MOA rail, picture a “Bat” style. They have built many winnings Benchrest rifles and lately have been making some very fine long range barreled actions.
Barreled action ordered, stock Bobby Hart sourced from a guy switching to a chassis and bottom metal with magazine came with it. All this takes about 5 weeks to accomplish.
Part 2 to follow later….it’s the shooting part!!
- May 3, 2018 at 8:43 pm #50334
- May 3, 2018 at 9:06 pm #50335
While I had been waiting I was casting up the best possible boolits I could. I weighed them and sorted the heavy into lots by themselves. Then lubed, sized and gas checked. I was now lubing with White Label 2500. The almost perfect culls I lubed with BAC, sized and gas checked. I started to break in the rifle by shooting these boolits loaded with 8.5 grains of HS-6. The indoor range I shoot Bullseye at also has a 40 yard rifle bay. So shoot a few clean, repeat and repeat and….we’ll we have all gone through the process. The results were promising…ten shots including the first shot after cleaning. The main group is .879.
- May 3, 2018 at 9:35 pm #50336
Fast forward to May 2nd, and finally a day with nice weather. Calm and 60F at 9am. Packed up and off to the range I go. I meet up with a buddy from Bullseye, he has a Labradar, so no guessing the speed.
Get all set up and targets up at 100 Meters, 200 Meters and 300 Meters or 109, 218.7, and 328 yards. They also have 10 inch steel swinging gongs at each distance.
Started off with some light loads at 100, just to get settled in. Then some at 2280 FPS. I was shooting 5 shots and cleaning. First shot gong, then 3 on paper followed by the last shot at the gong. Push a wet patch through followed by a dry one. Repeat. The target below is 32 grs IMR3031 a half inch square of Dacron filler. Velocity was 2280 FPS the same load without the filler was a vertical string and the only 2010 FPS.
- May 3, 2018 at 10:48 pm #50337
I was very happy at this point! New rifle shooting really good at a decent speed. Cleaning patches were sliding through with no resistance, no lead just carbon and lube. Dry patch comes out nice and clean. Time to step it up…..
I had loaded up 30 rounds with 45 grs H4895, the best heavy boolits, lubed with WL 2500 and a annealed aluminum gas check.
Shot 5 at 100 to verify same as before, gong-paper-gong, wet patch-dry patch. Missed the gong….hmmm, 2880 FPS….WoW they are really moving!!! Way faster than I had worked out/guessed. Next shot at the paper… ahhhh….there they are about 3 inches high, next shot gong is a ringing!! Wet patch slips right through way cleaner than the 2200 FPS loads, no lead just a light grey carbon/lube color, dry patch is barely discolored. Looking positive. Shot 5 at the gong all hit all right close together by the lead splats. Again cleans up quick. I had some calculations for drop so went crazy and dialed in the drop for 200 and squeezed off 10 fairly quick. The wind had started to gust around 35 mph and was blowing 3 ways at the same time. It was really swirling the wind flags were really dancing. The Labradar showed a low of 2857 and a high of 2892 FPS. I managed to hit the gong 7 times 2 went low and plowed a furrow under the gong. We guessed one went away to the side in the wind. I dialed in the information for 300 yards I forgot the range was in Meters when I was doing my calculations/guesstimate, I was also using a lower FPS of 2700. We kind of figured one would correct the other?? Kinda like 2 lefts make a right…. I didn’t clean this time just to see how or what would happen. I got settled in, with my left eye watching the close wind flag and seeing the 300 flag with the target, I waited for a calm break. First shot, didn’t see a hole, second shot…yep….there was a hole, third…no hole, fourth….hole, fifth….woohooo a hole!!!
Now it seems kind of anti climatic as I write this but I can honestly say I could hardly contain myself when the Labradar was showing almost 2900 FPS and I was actually hitting paper at 300 Meters. The photo shows 3 small holes by the tape. Those were with my 260 Remington, shows how I had misjudged the distance and how the wind was pushing those fast slippery bullets. The bottom three holes are from NOE 30 XCB at 2880 FPS the other two were just below the paper, leaving nice round holes with black circles in the plywood backer. Next trip I expect the holes to get closer, but I have to call this a very successful trip.
This wouldn’t have happened if Larry didn’t take the time to write the excellent reports about his rifles and was so giving of his time to mentor me in person when I was in Arizona over Christmas. There are also others that I gleaned information from and K&S Arms for building/making the barreled action. I will report more as I shoot this rifle and get more results.
Thank you Larry, your friend and believer in High Velocity cast boolits.
- May 4, 2018 at 9:42 am #50338Larry GibsonParticipant
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Love it when a plan comes together…… beautiful rifle…
Are you going to try slower powders?
- May 4, 2018 at 7:52 pm #50344slim1836Participant
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Thanks for the report, it was an enjoyable read. Larry is a wealth of information and you sir, a fast learner.
- May 4, 2018 at 9:45 pm #50345GoodsteelKeymaster
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It takes a bit of jingle to get your foot in the door, but it sure is cheaper than beating your brains out exercising your insanity like others advocate. Larry has been spot on from day one, and the 30XCB bullet is one of the finest cast bullets ever devised by man. Run it through a properly built rifle and cue the music!!!!
Well written sir! Well done! Good shooting!!!!
- May 4, 2018 at 11:53 pm #50349
Thank you for the positive comments!!
Yes. I plan on trying IMR 4320 and 4831, main reason I have a lot of those 2 powders.
My reasoning for going with H4895 was,
1) I have loaded with it a lot.
2) Was pretty sure I could/would be below 3000 FPS even if I was off by a bit. As it turned out, I was estimating 2700 FPS and reality was almost 200 FPS faster.
3) I knew from loading reduced 30-06 loads for a friends daughter H4895 and 150 gr. jacketed FN for 30-30. Velocity would be fairly consistent without filler.
I will now load some with IMR4320 starting at 45 grs. and work up from there. I will also load some with IMR4831 starting at 55 grs. Both loads should run close to 2700 FPS. Having a friend with a Labradar makes for easy testing speed wise. I know cast boolits slid down the bore easier than jacketed, but I wasn’t planning on 200 FPS faster. The other was how fast the drop was when they get out to 300 yards. The extra 28 feet, to get 300 Meters, made a difference almost double what the 260 Remington had for drop.
Next trip out I will report my results…..
Have an excellent weekend!!!
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