Plain base, no-groove bullets

  • Last Post 10 November 2018
38splpete posted this 08 November 2018

I took a chance on a used five cavity NEI mold that casts a .30 cal. 170g plain base spitzer.type bullet.  On receiving it I was rather dismayed to find that the mold cavities are also plain sided--no lube grooves.  Well, I did cast some with 4:1 WW/Lino and lubed with thinned LLA--loaded with 20g AA2230 in my 7.62 Z 39 Lapua chambered Rem 722 they shot about a 12" shotgun pattern at 100 yds--the same load with a SAECO 315 or Lyman 311041 shoots under 1 1/2 in.  I was not expecting MOA accuracy with the grooveless bullets but thought maybe I'd get 2--3 in. groups.  Would it be worthwhile to try some light loads with this bullet?  I can only try, but if anybody has any experience with a bullet like this I'd like to hear about it.

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 08 November 2018

Sounds like this mold is designed for coated bullets. Also you don't mention what diameter they cast.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 09 November 2018

might be for paper patch ....   might measure about 0.300 not 0.308-314.  i think if you can shoot a one-foot group at 100 yards you are not far from doing much better.

but there currently is some in interest here in lubeless bullets ... and even grooveless castings lubed and not lubed .

in an effort to understand cast bullet shooting.  some guy named rowland shot a hundred cast shots into an inch about a hundred years ago ...  it's kind of embarrassing that even with cell phones to text about it we haven't done a lot better ...


i am guessing that they will shoot better if:

they are big enough to be a snug fit in the THROAT  ( rule #1 and so far the only rule ) 

try about 1000 fps ... 5 or 7 gr. of unique in a 308 ....   any kind of lube and also try without and see what happens.  


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38splpete posted this 09 November 2018

As-cast diameter of the grovelers bullets is .313-.314.  They are a snug fit in the throat of my rifle.  Will experiment with light loads.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 10 November 2018

please keep us up on your results.   there are a few of us currently re-trying smooth bullets.   bet you find a combination that is usable.


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