Shooters Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
287 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Wow! I get to be first! Okay, what is everyone planning to use for NRA Cowboy silhouette? I'm thinking about the venerable 30/30 with 180 grain cast bullets. This looks like it could be fun. I kinda doubt I'll use my 45-70 for this game though.---------------------------------> Bob
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,429 Posts
Bob...I'm in the dark on this one. I hope within the coming weeks we can get the Cowboy group from Fort White aboard! In the meantime any contributions you can make, please do!
Best Regards, James

(Edited by James Gates at 6:22 pm on Mar. 13, 2001)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,931 Posts
Why not use the 45-70?
Several weekends ago I cast up a bucket full of 350 grain gas checked slugs for my Winchester 1886. I used 45 grains of Rl-7 because I've got the free worlds supply of the stuff. (One of those weak moments when I had money in my jeans and no good looking woman in sight.)
Any way, I loaded up 50 rounds of this stuff, headed to the range, fired a few at paper targets to check the sights. We had scattered a couple of dozen clay birds scrounged up from the sportin' clay range. on the back stop.We then started shootin' from off hand.
Wish I could say that a dozen shots took care of a dozen clays, but I did get runs of three and four, before I needed to restock the dirt back stop.
It's my idea to shoot that Winchester enough to get really comfortable with the 350 grain slugs then move back to the old tried and true 445 grain slugs. The creasent butt plate takes a bit of getting used to.
Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
287 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Jim- I'm interested in the 30/30 because it recoils less than the 45-70. The 30/30s long-range trajectory is also a bit flatter than the 45-70s. I'm thinking about 170-180 grains at about 2000 fps. My 1895 Marlin is a powerful brute, but not what I'm looking for for this game. A friend is working on his .307 for this. I'll bet he doesn't go any faster than the 30/30 anyway!------>Bob
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,931 Posts
I agree with you, in that the 45-70 is a bit powerful for knocking over rams and such. My 45-70 is what I have that I can use for right now for cowboy work. After I get a 1892 in 45 Colt up and going, then I'll go looking for a rifle in 38-55. I have the molds for this caliber that I've used for my 375 Whelen.
Jim
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,365 Posts
I too think that the ultimate gun for this game would be the Marlin in .38-55.   The optimum balance of bullet weight and velocity.   A great cartridge when loaded to it's potential, and easy on the shoulder as well!

That Marlin cowboy is a sweet looking levergun to boot!

God Bless,

Marshall
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,931 Posts
Hey Marshall
I had been thinking about converting an old model Marlin or maybe some derlict Winchester that could be restored to beauty and usefulness.
As far as hunting goes I like big bullets that sort of lumber on down the track.
Is there some other 38 caliber rifle cartridge that was used back in the wild and wooly west? Say a 38-65 or 38-58.
Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
I believe that the 38-56 is a true 375 dia bullet and uses the 45-70 brass as the parent case. The 38-55 usually requires bullets of .380+ dia. Some exceptions may be some commemorative M94 Win that had barrels running .377. FWIW.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,365 Posts
Interestingly, before Winchester came out with the .38-55, Ballard and Marlin had a cartridge called the .38-50, which dimensionally is the exact same as our present day .375 Winchester (except for the beefiness of current brass of course)!  Winchester had to "one-up" them, and hence the .38-55!  The origiinal .38-50 simply utilized the basic .32-40 brass which also spawned the .32 Winchester Special and the .30-30 Winchester!

Yes, a .38-50 might be an interesting converseration starter at a cowboy shoot!

God Bless,

Marshall
 

·
Beartooth Regular
Joined
·
650 Posts
Marshall,

You are right on the money when you said that the .30-30 is based on the .38-50, the father of the .32-40 & .38-55.  The .38-50 is 2.00" long and when Winchester engineers reduced the neck diameter to hold a 160 grain .30  caliber "metal patched" bullet in 1894,  the cartridge case grew to 2.03" in length. Thus the .30 Winchester Smokeless was born.  A.K.A. the .30 Winchester, .30 W.C.F., .30-30 W.C.F., .30-30, &  .30-6-100.

The last reference was illustrated in the Dec. 1896 Winchester catalog. It was a "Short Range" cartridge for "small game where the more powerful cartridge is not necessary". It featured a 100 gr. lead bullet over 6 grs. of smokeless powder.

As you can tell, I'm a .30-30 nut!


Pourboy,
The .30-30 and N.R.A. Cowboy shooting go together like ducks and water.  I personally like 200 grain bullets on the rams for a little more insurance. I can get slightly over 2,000 f.p.s. using slow burning H414, W760  or Hodgdon's 4350 Extreme.

For 170-180 grain bullets, 36-37 grs. of any of these powders is tough to beat in the .30-30.  Accuracy wise, I have found nothing better in 22 years of .30-30 cast bullet shooting!

Good luck on those silhouettes!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Pourboy,
             I'm shooting a 1948 vintage Marlin 336 A 24" bbl 30-30. I'm using 23.4 grs of 2015 br AA powder behind a 170 gas ck bullet at about 1800 fps and consistently hitting the ram at 300 m . I have a marble semi buck horn rear sight and a #31 Marble on the front.
             I picked up this rifle to replace the Win 86 I had because of excessive recoil and havn't looked back sence.
 

·
"Bad Joke Friday" Dan (moderator emeritus)
Joined
·
7,762 Posts
Gentlemen,

Really enjoyed your interesting responses and have a follow-up question; what sights are you recommending?
I understand the cowboy shooting does not allow the Williams peep sight type of device, and I also read you have to be careful with the heavier recoiling calibers to not have eye endangerment problems?

Dan "lever-action novice"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,645 Posts
The gun for this game looks to be the .307 Winchester.
The Lee 170 FN or the RCBS 180 FN would both do well.
I use the NEI 162 gr. paper patch bullet ahead of 40.0 gr. of IMR 4064. About 2300 fps. and no leading. Easy to make and use. You can use one sight setting for all ranges.

I would like to read the "offical" rules for this. Our gun club has had some "unofficial" cowboy lever matches that were a lot of fun
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Puorboy
 I have been around cast bullets about as long as most people and I find it refreshing to hear some one say something good about 30-30's and cast bullets.John Kort is always in favor of them.I doubt he remembers me but he made a big impession on  me when we were both at Raton,N.M. back in the 80's
Anyhoo, getting back to 30-30's;I am now shooting my Win.model 94 wiyh a 25-inch barrel using a Lyman 31140 mold bored out to 0.304xo.309 @180 grns. with bare bottoms to shoot Cowboy Silhouette  at a velocity of  1450 fps.In spite of my wobble-bobble and flinch, I can pretty wll hold my own
   I size my bullets to 0.311, heat treat themm in an oven and quench them .They have A BHN OF 22.
 I think you have a good load and god accuracy. GOOD LUCK ON YOUR SHOOTS.
  tbc
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Pourboy
        We have been shooting Cowboy Silhouette at our I.H.M.S.A. Big Bore handgun matches for 15yrs. or so, same targets and ranges. Is this a NRA santioned event now? Its been quite popular here. Don't know how good it will work at 300 but at the 200 Meter Rams in my Marlin 336CS the Lyman #311041 cast of wheelweights and a little tin, air cooled sized .310, with LBT lube and enough Reloader#7 to give 1750f.p.s. takes every ram I can hit down. It shoots into 4" at 200 Meters.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top