Tried and True .30-30 Ammunition

Improved .30-30 ammunition

In 1895 Winchester launched the first version of the .30 Smokeless cartridge. It was made to be used in Winchester’s Model 1894 carbine and rifle. The rifle was a lever action repeating rifle. The ammo was also called the .30 Winchester Center Fire or .30 WCF. Winchester designed the .30 WCF as the first small-bore sporting cartridge created for smokeless powder in the U.S. It became the most popular hunting rifle in the history of firearms.

Birth of the .30-30

Shooters used the round in Marlin’s Model 1893 rifle. The company named it the .30-30 Smokeless or just .30-30 ammunition. The company added the second “.30” in reference to the standard load of 30 grains (1.9 g) of smokeless powder. Marlin wanted to launch the cartridge as part of its own line. They renamed the cartridge to avoid giving credit to Winchester, the company’s rival. The Union Metallic Cartridge Co. changed the name of its .30-30, as well.

Specs

A .30-30 cartridge is usually loaded with bullets weighing 150-170 grains (9.7–11.0 g), however, lighter loads are available. The cartridges can use up to 180 gr (11.7 g), but length restrictions of lever-action rifles commonly chambered for the ammo round limit their abilities.

Perfect for Hunting

Shooters call the .30-30 an entry-level gun for hunters. It has a light recoil which is easier to handle for novice shooters. It has an average range of 200 yards. The round is good for hunting medium-sized game like deer as well as black bear. Hunters report using the round on larger game such as caribou, moose and pronghorns. Seasoned hunters argue the effectiveness of the round on moose, especially at longer distances. Hunters use .30-30 ammunition for hunting moose in Newfoundland, Canada, but it is not recommended. It is not legal for moose hunting in Sweden, Norway or Finland because it does not meet the minimum energy requirements for the large game.

Tried and True

Firearms manufacturers sell guns that are far superior to the .30-30 when it comes to technological advances. However, many hunters return to their .30-30 rifles on a regular basis. Some hunters use the guns for a sense of nostalgia. Perhaps the gun was handed down through generation to generation, carrying with it decades of history, as well as memories. The gun might have been used to shoot for the first time or take down a prize target.

Some use the weapon because it is easier to shoot than those with all the extra bells and whistles. People like what they know. Additionally, a .30-30 rifle carries less weight which makes it easier to trek through woods and dense brush while tracking a target. Hunters get worn out by climbing hills (especially in the snow) with the excess weight of other equipment. In the end, it is the bullet and the aim that matters the most.

 

Best Hunting Ammo

Best Hunting Ammo 

Hunters choose their ammunition for the same reason as other seasoned shooters; they know what works and you’re not going to change their minds. Hunting enthusiasts use the .30-06 more than any other firearm, although the market has plenty of other weapons to choose from including handguns and ARs.

Types of Cartridges

Some shooters say that choosing your bullet is even more important than choosing your gun. Old school or high tech weapons won’t do anything without the right type of bullet.

Buyers pick Speer, Winchester, Federal, Hornady, and Remington cartridges more than any other. The cartridge will keep about 50 percent of its weight, but will drop off with high impact velocity. Many call this type the “standard” hunting bullet, i.e., the most common.

The second type is a bonded, plastic-tipped boat tail. If the bullet is bonded, the jacket and core are bonded together, creating excellent ballistics. The round will keep 65 percent – 80 percent of the initial weight regardless of impact velocity. Hornady Interbond, Swift Scirocco, Speer Grand Slam, Nosler Accubond, and Nosler Partition offer the best rounds in this category.

The third type is designed for bolt-action rifles. Bear hunters prefer the reliability of a bolt-action rifle with a round that will make a sure kill. Experts like the .338 Remington Ultra Magnum, .338 Winchester Magnum,.338 Federal Premium, .340 Weatherby Magnum, and .375 H&H.

The fourth type includes deep penetrating rounds. The ammo doesn’t have quick expansion, but they keep 80 percent – 100 percent of their original weight, despite high impact velocity. Barnes X, Swift A-Frame, Trophy Bonded Bear Claw, and the Winchester Failsafe offer the most popular rounds in this category.

Buying Hunting Ammo Online

You can buy hunting ammo online to save money, especially if you plan to be out in the field a lot.  Hunters find ammo for every type of prey from whitetail to elk to bear to small game.

Top Picks:

Hornady® Superformance™ Rifle Ammunition

Hornady uses an innovative powder blend that yields an additional 200 fps from a Superformance round. It results in a flatter trajectory, reduced wind drift, and superior accuracy.

Remington® Premier® Core-Lokt® Ultra Ammunition

Premier Core-Lokt ammunition does the job for taking holds its own when confronting a bear. It offers excellent penetration, retained energy, and high accuracy. The round retains 95 percent of its original weight and gives expansion two times the original diameter. It’s rated for terminal performance up to 500 yards.

Nosler Partition

Nosler is a good all-around bullet. It lacks high accuracy compared to some but has high terminal performance.

Federal Premium Trophy Bonded Tip Rifle Ammunition

Vital-Shok line is modeled after the Trophy Bonded Bear Claw® cartridge but gives increased performance. The polymer-tipped, boat-tail cartridge has downrange accuracy, and the solid copper shank has reliable penetration.

Conclusion

Experts know that almost any type of ammo will work well if you’re a good shot, but it doesn’t hurt to start off with the best.

 

 

Best Ammo for Competition Shooting

 

Best Ammo for Competition

Competition shooters use a variety of ammunition to achieve the best possible score. Regulations for competitive matches do not specify what ammunition should be used. Long time competitors and serious firearms enthusiasts use wildcat rounds, loading their ammo rather than relying on factory brands. However, novices shoot factory ammo most often, as it is less expensive. Others prefer factory ammo because of the reliability.

Choosing Ammunition

The governing bodies of shooting competitions do not recommend specific brands of ammunition, but they do have guidelines. Shooters may reload their ammunition or use factory brands. However, experts give recommendations to newcomers on choosing the right ammo for the right match. Seasoned shooters have preferences as to the caliber they shoot, so it is wise to ask several different people for advice. A 9mm enthusiast won’t give good intel on shooting a .357 Magnum, just as a fan of a .45 ACP probably won’t have an opinion on the best .22 LR.

Compatibility

Guns deliver ammo in different ways, so it’s important to find ammo that is compatible with your gun. Shooters use different guns for different competitions, so it’s likely that the ammo will change as well. Experts show newcomers the importance of finding ammo that their guns like, meaning that they will perform as expected without misfires or jams.

Reliability

Shooters rely on their guns and ammo to perform every time, so reliability is a crucial part of choosing the right ammo. Competitors dealing with misfires and other issues get distracted and could possibly lose the match. Besides, using an unreliable tool is an annoyance.

Consistency

Consistency goes hand in hand with reliability. Competitors need a round that will perform correctly, not only the first time, but every time. The ammo must fire properly and maintain accuracy throughout each shot and each round if the shooter has any hope of winning. Smart shooters pay attention to grain as a way of gauging a consistent and accurate round.

Accuracy

A gun determines its accuracy. This means that a gun with a heavy recoil tends to be less accurate than a lighter gun since it can throw off your aim. Competition shooting is about hitting the target, not taking down an assailant. For that reason, choosing a smaller caliber, such as a .22 LR or 9mm may deliver the best results in certain categories.

Cost

Competition shooting requires many hours of range practice. Therefore, shooters use a massive amount of ammo. Buying ammo in bulk is the best way to go to reduce cost. Competitors using large calibers find that buying bulk or surplus ammo can save a great deal of money. Wildcatters also have an advantage if they are able to buy their supplies at a discount price.

Seeking Advice

New competitors often seek advice from seasoned shooters on the range or at competitions. Old timers are happy to share their experiences, including what ammo might work best for your particular event.