7.62x54R reloading

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by Texaswolf, Mar 1, 2010.

  1. Texaswolf

    Texaswolf New Member

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    Ok, have my new reloading equipment ordered, and one of the calibers i plan to reload is the russian 7.62x54R. I want to reload rounds for my 91/30 that are better than the surplus. But, after going thru the Lyman and Lee manuals, and looking for the bullets, got a question. Both say that they used a .311 sized bullet, yet only Lapua lists, at least at Midway USA, thier D166 bullet, supposedly the size for the Nagant, and my SVT40. But it is .308. will this bullet size work in the Nagant and SVT?
  2. The_Rifleman

    The_Rifleman New Member

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    Yes. In my Hornady handbook it lists the .308, .310 and .312 diameter bullets for that cartridge.

    It makes a note that the best accuracy is obtained with the .312s along with mentioning not to use the .312 or the .310 bullets in a .308 barrel.

    Look in the caliber section "303 Caliber, 7.7mm Japanese, 7.62x39mm (.310-.312)" and you'll find more.

    [EDIT] Assuming the "SVT" is also the same caliber; don't know what "SVT" stands for.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2010
  3. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    Texaswolf:

    These guns have had a long and hard life in the hands of Russians and their friends. Many have been re-barreled or mistreated (corrosive priming compounds not cleaned out soon enough). Barrel dimensions vary all over the place, but 308 bullets are probably not the ones to use.

    You really need to find out exactly what diameter your barrel really is. You do that by "slugging" it. You push a slightly larger pure lead hunk down the barrel and measure its largest cross section with micrometers. Typically these barrels are somewhere between .312 to .314 or there abouts. There are few jacketed bullets in that size and the only option usually is the 303 British bullets sold by most bullet makers. They are not .303 but .312 inches and that is about as close as you are going to get with commercial jacketed bullets. I shoot the Remington Bulk 303 brit bullets and the accuracy in my MN is fine. It was not with 308 bullets.

    If slugging is not an option, just stick a 308 bullet into the end of the barrel and see if it is a tight fit or loose. If loose just go with the 303 Brit bullets. If tight you really need to find out exactly what you have. Have a gunsmith slug it for you. The gun may have been re-barreled for 308 bullets. With these military guns you never know for sure until you measure them. They have been passed around the world by the Russians and worked on by who knows who for nearly a century in some cases. Once they get the right ammo they usually are good shooters, at least mine is.

    LDBennett
  4. AngelDeville

    AngelDeville New Member

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    Lapua makes the D166 in .311 diameter, one of the online dealers carries them but I can't recall off the top of my head...

    I have never slugged a barrel that was larger than .311, must be internet rumors about the fabled .318 diameter ones....
  5. blackcat_attilio

    blackcat_attilio Member

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    Hi! I got and shoot an M91/30 re-worked by the Finns (it´s marked D) and I shoot both Lapua D166 (very expensive) and .311 . These are the best bullets for Mosin. The d166 works better on the mid-long distances (they are heavy bullets). Said that, control the right caliber of your Mosin - during the years they had a "hard life", as said in an answer above. Anyway mostly the .308 is not the right caliber for a Mosin.
  6. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    AngelDeville:

    How many have you slugged? When I put up a post similar to this one a couple of years ago, NO ONE's MN slugged at .311 inches! Everyone's was .312 all the way to .314+ inches. .314 was probably the most common and that's where mine was.

    Are we talking about the same thing here? Slugging measures from the bottom of the grove on one side to the bottom of the grove on the other side. This is not the bored hole size that the barrel starts out with, but grove to grove after rifling. The bullet is suppose to be 1 or 2 thousands larger than the grove to grove measurement of the barrel. That is not possible with a M-N because no one makes a jacketed bullet that size. Commercially loaded ammo is normally .312 inches, at least the stuff I have is that. 303 Brit is the closest. We should never use the next size larger which is 32 caliber at .321 inches as that will cause a kaboom. .308 bullets rattle down the bore never fully filling the groves and allowing gases to escape around the bullet base, reducing its final velocity and greatly reducing the gun's accuracy potential.

    LDBennett
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2010
  7. res45

    res45 Member

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    My 1944 Mosin M44 slugged out at .312.5 dia. groove to groove land to land was .301 It shoot .311 jacketed bullets and cast bullets sized to .314 the most accurately. Jacketed bullets should be slightly smaller than the groove dia. A jacketed bullet larger than the groove diameter can cause dangerously high pressure when the rifle is fired.

    With cast bullets they need to be .01 to .02 over the groove dia. to provide a proper bore seal and eliminate gas cutting which is the main cause of bore leading.

    Slugging the bore will tell you which bullet will fit the best and give you the safest load and best accuracy. Common bore sizes in various Mosin rifles.

    http://7.62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinSpec.htm
  8. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    Most of the mosins i come accross slug around .313. although i did have one that slugged .309 and one that slugged .317, so I have seen all extremes. the mosin rifle shoots best with cast bullets sized to the individual bore, that being said, all the ones i have had sucessfull accuracy with jacketed bullets have been with hornady 150 and 174 gr interlocks .312 diameter intended for the brit. 303. Good luck
  9. zkovach

    zkovach Active Member

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    when i slugged mine it landed at 312. its an easy process. enjoy!! Also a quick tip i save all my threads and put them into a word file so i dont lose any info these guys offer you!
  10. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    zkovach:

    Boy, I wish I were that organized. When something comes up I have to rely on my weak old memory and sometimes get it slightly wrong or I have to search through the site to find the appropriate earlier info.

    LDBennett
  11. gandog56

    gandog56 Member

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    I use .311" bullets for all mine, as my smallest bore is .3105". I'm thinking .308" bullets may not expand enough to fill the bore and you would get a loss of velocity and accuracy drop off.
  12. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    accuracy drop-off is correct. I didnt see much difference in velocity just the .308s were way innaccurate..
  13. 10 Spot Terminator

    10 Spot Terminator New Member

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    My vintage 1939 M91/30 slugs at .3095 ,,, I contacted Lee Precision Reloading and asked them if it was possible to use their bullet sizing dies for lead bullets to reduce the diameter of jacketed bullets by .002 and they said it was definitely doable and has been done more than you would think but that a few guidelines needed to be observed. First and foremost not to try to reduce the diameter by more than .004 and not to do more than .002 at a time as not to over stress the jacket to the point where it might seperate the bond with the core. This in mind I ordered a .311 and a custom .310 die from Lee and set about doing a 2 step downsize of the Sierra .303 cal 150 gr. Pro Hunters to .310 diameter and am getting 1 1/4 in. 100 yd groups and am in the process of having the bolt turned down to accomodate mounting a nice scope and expect to get that group down to half that. By the way I use RCBS case lube when down sizing the bullets and run them through the final sizing die 3x and they come out smooth as a babys butt then rinse them clean in hot water and dish soap and then rinse and paper towel til dry .
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