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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just a beginner reloader (now successfully reloading three handgun calibers)... Which rifle caliber do you suggest I start with? .223 or .30-30?

is one of these best to learn first before moving to the other?

 

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Start with the 30-30. It is a more forgiving round.
 

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I have to agree with GW. The 3030 is also much more forgiving and versatile of a round to reload. If you try reloading some Lake City 5.56 ammo, you'll have to deal with crimped in primers, etc. The 30-30 round doesn't have that to deal with and works over a very wide range of bullet weights and powder charges.
 

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I totally agree with the 30-30 round. It is a versatile round and relatively easy to reload for beginners. Good luck!
 

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Just a beginner reloader (now successfully reloading three handgun calibers)... Which rifle caliber do you suggest I start with? .223 or .30-30?

is one of these best to learn first before moving to the other?
Go with the 30-30. I load for that caliber and it is an easy round to get along with. I use mostly Leverevolution powder. Nice fast accurate load.

****Oh, just a reminder...be careful to not get lube on the case shoulder or neck, which can squeegee down to the shoulder, which will cause dents in the shoulder.
 

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I always thought brass prep for the 30-30 was easier than 223/5.56. It's commercial vs milsurp. Easier to establish the routine with commercial brass. Milsurp always involves an extra step or two.
 

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I always thought brass prep for the 30-30 was easier than 223/5.56. It's commercial vs milsurp. Easier to establish the routine with commercial brass. Milsurp always involves an extra step or two.
First time reloading, yes, but after that, it is just like commercial brass.
 

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Small case and higher max pressure is always harder than big case and lower max pressure. It is like the difference between reloading 9mm and .38SPL. Small difference in powder or bullet seating depth can be a drastic change in .223 and not a big deal in the 30-30.
 

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.30-30 has a rimmed case and rimmed cases are much more forgiving for reloaders....

BFG's.jpg
 
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Definitely 30-30.
 

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I am going to be the dissenting voice here. While the 30-30 is easy to load, it does have two issues to watch for. The 30-30 is an old case design. The walls are relatively thin and the actions of lever rifles, the most common platform for the 30-30, can have some spring in it. The cases sometimes only last for 2 or 3 loadings before showing signs of incipient case head separation. It's easy to check for, put a bend in a piece of stiff wire, run it down inside the case and feel for the separation. The cases are also relatively easy to crush also if you put a little to much crimp on them.

Those to caveats aside, I will say 30-30 also.
 

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Holy crap is right.....just the size of the gun would make me pause before pulling that trigger.

GregR, you bring up really good points on the cases, however case inspection should always be done no matter what cartridge you're loading, as you know. I don't have enough reloaded shots downrange yet to be able to compare the amount of times you can reload each, but what you say there makes sense.....can't wait to find out. ;)
 
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I'll make it unanimous. Start with the .30-30, then move on to the .223. Whichever one you start with, it is important to start!
 

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30-30 because it's more forgiving and you will be able to find your brass to reload again.
I agree 30-30 brass use to be easier to find----but say hello to my little friend.................
brass catch.jpg
I recently purchased a 458 SOCOM upper. Brass is a bit pricey and I don't want to loose any if I can help it. So I got one of these. I also got two more of the rail attachments so I can now use it on all three of my rifles. Used it yesterday and it was nice not having to chase brass.

That aside back on topic. I agree 30-30 is the place to start. Case prep alone on 223 for the unprepared is enough to make you want to go and buy factory ammo.
 
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