30-06 reloads


New Member
Apr 6, 2012
Lakeside, CA
So, My journey has begun. I have done some research and bought the needed gear now its time to put it all together. Here is the plan, cases are clean, sized & deprimed, cleaned again, trimmed, deburred and dechamfered. Using IMR 4350 I plan on starting at 56gr and working to 58gr using a Coal of 3.290, CCI 200 LR primers and 165gr Sierra Gameking spitzer boattail bullets. I'm starting with powder changes, as in grain weight changes. Any advice as to how fast or slow to work change to my powder weight and how many rounds to load in each test group? I have found that right around 57gr of IMR 4350 using the same or similar bullets is very effective for many shooters, so any info is welcome.
Half grain increments when increasing powder charge. Three rounds for each charge to be tested at 100 yards...
First batch of test rounds are done.. I have to admit that I was pretty intimidated by priming and charging the cases, but once I had a couple done I felt better. I ended up making groups of 6. I started with 56gr of IMR 4350 then went in half grain intervals up to 57.5gr. I played with coal at 57gr and made a batch at 3.292 which is .022 off of my lands and a batch at 3.290. I wasn't too sure how much to play with the coal. Thanks for the input.
I like to bump my charges up a grain at a time with the larger cartridges until I get in the zone where its beginning to shoot good and then a half grain at a time. I usually load nine rounds of each and fire three three shot groups in succession. I average the groups and review them just to make sure I didn't get lucky with my shooting on any one particular group. I make sure to let the rifle cool completely before firing the next string. Also I will clean the rifle about every 20- 30 rounds to minimize the effect of fouling on accuracy which I have found can be important when shooting solid copper bullets. As far as cleaning goes the foaming bore cleaners are really great and save a lot of work and chance of screwing up the bore with poor cleaning techniques.
Thanks for the input guys. I plan to hit the range for the first time with the new tikka and with my first reloads. I will be breaking in the barell and sighting in then working my loads to see what she likes... I plan on shooting at South bay rod & gun because I will be taking a lot of time.. Thanks again
There's a lot of different input on barrel break in. Some brands claim no break in and others say you must, personally I think the truth lies somewhere in between. A
brand new barrel probably does not shoot the same as one at 500 rounds..
Snake charmer, many of the shooters / hunters I have spoke with said that they break in their rifles and that it wouldn't hurt anything. By their recommendation I plan on starting by shooting 1 then clean, for the first 10 rounds. After the first 10 are done then I can go 2-3 rounds then clean for the next 10 rounds. Final step shoot 5 shot groups then clean and i don't remember how many rounds to keep that up. I welcome any info on this as it will be slow and a little pricey but worth it if it makes for better life and accuracy.
Shoot one and clean, shoot one and clean etc - for first ten rounds (1-10). Shoot two and clean, shoot two and clean for the next 10 rounds (11-20). After that you could shoot 5 and clean, shoot 5 and clean and be done with it (20-30). When I say clean, I mean thoroughly clean.

You may get different input from different people. I have never owned a rifle that wasn't accurate so that method has worked great for me.
I finally got to the range again. I think I figured out where to set my powder at. I had the tightest group shooting 57.0 gr of IMR 4350 and using a OAL of 3.292. I plan on changing OAL in that powder range to see what it does to the groups. Any suggestions on how fast or how far off the lands I should take the rounds? I measured some Federal premium with the same bullet as I'm reloading and the set their OAL between 3.160 and the longest was 3.192. The more I shoot this tikka the more I love it.
The Tikka is the best kept secret in hunting rifles!

What bullet are you shooting?
When I work up a new load I start by using a Hornady loc n load o.a.l. gauge. I find out how far out the bullet can be seated by using the gauge and I back the bullet off the rifling thirty thousands and start there. I will move the bullet forward and back ten thousands at a time and shoot three groups of three shots each. Remember the ogive is different for each brand of bullet so if you are working with Sierra bullets in 165 grain and switch to Nosler 165's you need to use the loc n load guage on the new bullet to check how far out the bullet can seated and touch the rifling and then adjust your o.a.l from there. Don't be in a hurry this stuff is kind of tedious and you have to take your time with it.
Do people actually still use Sierra and Nosler bullets??? ;D ;D ;D
For now I am using 165gr sierra gameking spitzer boat tail bullets CCI no. 200 large rifle primers mixed cases (that might be a problem) IMR 4350 powder and I believe that my OAL is .020 off the lands. I don't have a actual gauge, I used a bullet in a spent case and gently chambered it to find max OAL.
Sherpa- I assure you NBK is joking he and I have shot animals side by side for years using different bullets, bottom line has always been where we placed the projectile as far as harvesting what we shot at. ;)
Yep' just kidding. Just ordered some Noser E-Tips. Cant wait to try them out.

Bullet placement is 90% of getting the job done. Sierra makes a good bullet.
I have been messing around a bit with powder charge and coal.. I get my tightest group so far from ( federal case, cci 200 LR primer, 57grain of IMR 4350, with a coal of 3.245, with a sierra gameking 165gr bullet. ) about a 1" group at 100 yds. Only problem is that factory cheep federal will produce just over .6" groups.. and now I am starting to run low on powder with supply in high demand... any other accurate choices for 30 - 06 and I just bought some nosler ballistic tip 165 gr do you thing the same powder charge and seating depth would work for them? thanks for the help

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