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 32 naa and 30 Luger questions
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jlwilliams
Average Member

USA
253 Posts

Posted - August 08 2019 :  3:40:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ok, I know I'm heading into the weeds here. I'll start by owning up that this is speculation and not practicality. If I do this conversion it will be "just because"

I've been thinking about sleaving a barrel to shoot 30 Luger from a sub compact pistol. Haven't decided what model to do it with, this is pure speculation. I think that a little less recoil than the 9mm and the flat trajectory would get good accuracy and reasonable power out of a small gun. I was researching the idea when I found out that the nearly defunct 32naa gets 30 Luger performance from really short barrels. A few smiths have converted PPK and similar guns with impressive results. Both are essentially boutique rounds, neither is available cheap so I'd be loading mostly but factory ammo is out there so it's not like shooting a wildcat.

I recall there were one or more here who had 32naa some time back, and lots and lots of experience comes to contribute here. So I'm asking what experience any of you have with these rounds. How do they stack up vs other small rounds. Both are more potent than 32acp but are they better than 380? A little better, or a lot? I know the 30Luger is often sold under loaded compared to old Euro military loads, I wonder how it would perform with good modern bullets like an XTP.

Jim Higginbotham
Moderator

USA
9808 Posts

Posted - August 08 2019 :  7:04:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm afraid I cannot be of much help. I've shot Evan's "Nuclear Chihuahua" and I have two pistols in .30 Luger though I've only fired one of them.


They are an original Luger made around 1920 and I have a barrel for my Browning "Half-power" but I have not fired it yet.


I don't think I have chronoed the .30 Luger but the original load pushed a 71 gr. FMJ at 1400 fps. I have a case of Fiochi JHP ammo but I have not fired any of it.


I also have dies but have not loaded a single round as of yet. I too wonder about the XTP and have some of those on hand.


Sort of interesting in an esoteric sort of way but I really think it either one of them are at their best as a squirrel cartridge - a job at which the .22 LR subsonic hollow point excels.


Years ago Fiochi loaded .32 Auto with a 60 gr JHP to 1200 fps (in a Walther PPK) but I think they have attenuated it somewhat these days.


Jim H.

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Evan
Administrator

34526 Posts

Posted - August 09 2019 :  1:20:23 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My question is, why bother? I've been carrying a full size primary pistol and a J frame as a backup daily for 50 years next month. Dressing around the guns is easier than spending months trying to sort things out.

"The greatest thing a Father can do for his children is to love their Mother."

Harold B. Lee

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Chris Christian
Advanced Member

USA
3599 Posts

Posted - August 09 2019 :  2:16:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
+1. And, if getting performance requires using handloaded ammunition, I would suggest that handloads can look very bad in a SD shooting.

Chris Christian
There are those who make things happen. There are those who watch things happen. There are those who wonder What The Heck happened! Pick one.
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montanaman
Advanced Member

1144 Posts

Posted - August 09 2019 :  3:51:31 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I've got a pistol in my pocket like that right now - a RUGER LCR in .327 Federal. :)

It's nasty to shoot with the 100GR JSP, but the 85 gr Hydrashocks are manageable.

Paladin didn't need a semi-auto, or a laser sight, and always carried an extra gun.
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Frogfoot
Senior Member

USA
864 Posts

Posted - August 10 2019 :  8:10:43 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If you really wanted to head out into the tall grass, you could have a .30 Luger barrel made for a Glock 26 and get a supply of .312" Sierra 90gr. JHC and run them through a Lee .308" Lube Sizer die and load appropriately or just get some of the 90gr.JHP Hornady bullets and use those.

We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. - Sir Winston Churchill
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Jim Higginbotham
Moderator

USA
9808 Posts

Posted - August 11 2019 :  7:24:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Evan

My question is, why bother? I've been carrying a full size primary pistol and a J frame as a backup daily for 50 years next month. Dressing around the guns is easier than spending months trying to sort things out.



Ditto, though I do experiment with other things (not usually for carry).

In fact for the last 42 years it has been a 1911 .45 and a J-frame, somewhere along the line I added another "1911 style" gun - that one has varied from 3.5 to 5". It did not replace the J-frame, it just got added to the mix, along with another J-frame or Colt D-frame but since I "retired" I dropped that 4th one.

In the winter I normally switch the bug to an N-frame .44 or .45 but on occasion I have carried a .41 Mag. - but those are mainly for hunting.

That is not a criticism of anyone's choice of carry - everyone has to work out their own salvation!

Jim H.

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Edited by - Jim Higginbotham on August 11 2019 7:26:29 PM
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Olddog84
Senior Member

USA
624 Posts

Posted - August 12 2019 :  08:40:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have experience shooting and handloading the 30 Luger because, like Jim, I have a Luger in that chambering. I got 500 rounds of the Fiocci ammo and it is a waste of your time. I chronographed it, and from memory, it was VERY under-powered. It was only moving the bullet something like 1,150 FPS. The Luger would NOT function with this ammunition: single shot only. When I got dies and Starline cases and started loading my own ammo, it would easily push the XTP bullets to over 1.300 FPS in my Luger. With my handloads with the XTP, FMJ and even hard cast lead bullets at this power level my 30 Luger is 100% functional. Recoil in the all steel Luger is, of course, minimal. It turned into a really fun shooter. Would I choose it as my primary gun to defend myself? Of course not. But it was and is a fun gun to shoot. Would it be worth turning something into a primary carry gun in this caliber? I don't see any advantage to doing so and many down sides, pointed out here by others. I find it a fun exercise in handloading and striving for historical accuracy. I actually find it similar to the 38 Super, which is a cool round that most factory loads are so underpowered that it is effectively neutered. At least Boutique loaders like Doubletap, etc. make effective full powered rounds for the Super that equal or beat 357SIG level performance, unlike the 30 Luger. I love experimenting and loading 38 Super as well to see what it was like historically. Really it is up to you but are there benefits to doing what you are talking about? If you treat it as a fun exercise, is it ever wrong? But for "serious" purposes? I don't really see the benefits.
Mike

"Somebody Tries to kill you, you try to kill 'em right back." Malcolm Reynolds
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jlwilliams
Average Member

USA
253 Posts

Posted - August 14 2019 :  6:42:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all the input thus far.

As far as "why?" This would be strictly to satisfy curiosity and to spend quality time with a lathe followed by range time. Maybe some woods walking. Categorically NOT for protection.

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