Bill Wilson on the 30 Remington AR

When Remington first anounced the release of the relatively new .30 RAR cartridge and R15 rifle in this caliber I have to admit I was initially under impressed. Being an avid 6.8 fan I have to admit based on factory published ballistics for it’s 125gr bullets I simply didn’t see any real gain over good 6.8SPC loads. Now that I have some “hands on” time with this new caliber I’m begining to see some real potential especially for hunting. Over the past month I’ve spent a lot of time experimenting with the .30 RAR as to load development and building guns. I now have close to 1000 rounds down range now (of widely varying loads) through the following guns:
DPMS 20″ medium weight upper (long gas)
Wilson Combat 16″ Recon (mid gas)
Wilson Combat 11″ suppressed SBR (CAR gas)
Here are my observations:
The cartridge case is VERY strong, in fact so strong it makes it hard to read pressure signs.
It seems to be capable of VERY good accuracy, can’t wait to get some match grade barrels made up in a couple of twist options.
With bullet weights of 125gr or less I personally see no substantial gain over the 6.8SPC, however with 130gr to 150gr I’m seeing some terminal performance gain both on paper and in the field (dead hogs).
It’s easy to reload and seems to be happy with several different powders and a wide variety of bullets.
With close to 1000rds downrange  through 3 guns I have had 100% function, so it’s obviously reliable.
Fits in a standard AR15 platform so can be light and compact, MUCH better than the big and heavy AR10. A 30RAR upper will work just fine on your 5.56/6.8 lower, something the .308 doesn’t have going for it.
Modest recoil, about like a .243 in a comparable weight bolt gun so will still be a good choice for female and youth shooters/hunters.
Low magazine capacity if compared to a 5.56 or 6.8, 4rd mag is about the same size as a 10rd 5.56 and the 8rd is the same size as a 20rd.. This is due to it’s single stack design, but may be one of the reasons it feeds so well, I’ve even shot some flat point bullets designed for the .30-30 and they fed……….. Low magazine capacity will probably prevent it from ever being a serious “tactical” weapon except for a SWAT sniper.
Can buy new cases!!!!! Being an avid handloader it’s a major pain (and expense) to have to buy factory ammo and blast it away to get cases!!! Hopefully Remington will start selling cases soon as this would be a big boon to the cartridge popularity.
Only 4 factory loads are currently available: 125gr FMJ, 125gr CoreLokt, 125gr Accutip and 150gr CoreLokt.
No load data except for Hodgdon/IMR powders is available.

Wilson Combat 30 AR

Wilson Combat 30 AR Close up


About gunwriter

Born and raised in the West Virginia hills, Richard literally grew up in the woods. He has chased coon hounds until daylight, waited out whitetails perched high in an oak, canoed the New River and hunted from the Montana Mountains to the Green Hills of Africa. During service in the Army and later as a municipal police officer and Special Agent with the railroad police, Richard obtained numerous certifications in small arms instruction. He has trained military personnel, law enforcement officers and civilians in the application of firearms for defensive, competitive and recreational use. Richard won the West Virginia Governor’s Twenty Award for law enforcement, the West Virginia National Guard State Pistol Competition and earned his Distinguished Medal with pistol. Badge turned in, Richard is now a contributing editor for several magazines. He was the compiling author of the book, Rifle Bullets for the Hunter and conceptualized and contributed to Selecting and Ordering a Custom Hunting Rifle. Richard also contributed a chapter to the John Velke book, The True Story of the Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency. Richard has patents on a riflescope reticle and a revolutionary bullet testing media. A hillbilly at heart, Richard lives on Shadowland - his shooting range in West Virginia - with the most understanding wife in the world, their three kids and a very protective ridgeback hound.
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10 Responses to Bill Wilson on the 30 Remington AR

  1. Pingback: 10 Things you should know about the .30 Remington AR | EMPTY CASES

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  3. Steve L. says:

    I’ve been following the 30 RAR since it was first announced but haven’t seen too much about it. Is Wilson Combat going to be offering this upper for sale? It doesn’t seem to be on their website.

    • gunwriter says:

      Not sure. Bill Wilson really likes the cartridge and told me they probably would. I know they are available from DPMS. Only complete rifles available from Remington.

  4. Lee L. says:

    I own two of these Rem Rifles. I am very happy with its performance, so far I have used on Coyote, groundhogs and wild boar with good results. The cartridge is accurate and can buck the wind very well. I haven’t experienced any feeding issues or jams. There’s a ton of reloading info as of Dec 2010 and more to come. Kick is nearly non-existent and the fact you don’t lose your sight picture while firing it is an added bonus. thanks for the review.

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  6. ted akers CPl USMC(1987-19910 says:

    Contacted remington, was told brass will be coming out this summer, i just love the new 30 ar, had two one shot kill on two decent whitetails last fall both deer were about 125yd away the 30 ar done it’s job perfect. my r-15 shoots sub moa groups with 37 grs of XBR 8208


  8. d v says:

    I own an upper in .30 RAR. I love it. I bought the reloading dies from Redding via Sinclair. I load up my plain jane deer hunting load of 150gr Hdy I-locks that shoots sub-moa. I have a load with 125 gr Nosler Ballistic Tips that shoots 1moa the same p.o.i. as the I locks. And, my most accurate loading will do 5 shot groups of .5 moa or better, 110 gr Hdy V-MAX.
    My favorite aspects of the cartridge are:
    Very low recoil, due to efficient design and small powder charges, recoil is something like nil.
    Excellent mid-range power. With useful velocity with bullets ranging from 110 to 180 grains, it shoots like a .308 Win. with the light stuff and copies the old and gold .300 Savage, a proven deer and black bear killer.
    Ease of loading: Being I already load three other .308 caliber cartridges, I don’t need to inventory another set of bullets. Also, the powders it likes are powders the .308 Win likes, again increasing convenience. A .30-30 shell holder works fine. (Note, contrary to popular belief by those informed of the nary, it does not share a case head dia of the .308. It’s more like .490) I use CCI BR small rifle primers for the ignition.
    Overall, it has a clean up the dinner plate before desert attitude, it’s not fussy about what it shoots well, and it’s so efficient and mild you don’t have to worry about it asking for seconds. Just feed it, it’ll make you smile.

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