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Old April 27, 2009, 08:12 PM   #1
MauserHunt
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Shooting .303 british in 1891 Mauser

Greetings everyone,

This is my first post, I have been reading quite a few threads here and I appreciate the time everyone puts into this.

I have a couple of old mausers chambered for 7.65x53. One is an all original all matching with the sling minus the cleaning rod and the other one is a nice sporter job. I have been thinking to rechamber them or at least one of them. I am about to go on a trip to africa and where I am going I think I am much more likely to either find 8mm mauser or .303 british. Based on what I read, the .303 is almost identical, so I was thinking to pick a box and try it. What would you do?has anyone tried this?
Also, has anyone else suffer in terms of accuracy when using the milsurp bullets headstamped SF 75?

Thanks in advance for your time.
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Old April 27, 2009, 08:32 PM   #2
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7.65X53 is a rimless cartridge. 303 British is a rimmed cartridge. They don't even look similar. They are not interchangeable.

The 7.65X53mm (sometimes called 7.65 Argentine, although 7.65 Belgian is probably more accurate) is a more modern design cartridge, with ballistics similar to 308 Winchester/7.62X51 NATO, but again, they are not interchangeable.
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Old April 27, 2009, 08:39 PM   #3
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Scorch,
Thanks for educating me. I did not realize the 303 was rimmed.
the 303 british is the same diameter as the 7.65 that is why I was curious.

Thanks again.
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Old April 27, 2009, 09:24 PM   #4
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.303 is 7.7x56R. Larger than 7.65. As hard as .303 is to find these days you are not doing yourself any favors. Reload for the original caliber and you will be better of in the long run.

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Old April 27, 2009, 09:45 PM   #5
MauserHunt
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The local shop has sardine boxes for .303.
The milsurp stuff is not generally my preference but I can't find prvi's where I live(california) and I have to wait for a show to come somewhere near by to pick up some.

I am trying to buy a reloading kit, hopefully will get that settled this week. I have been saving the brass and generally comfortable with being around powder since I shoot a muzzleloader when I am low on the mauser's rounds.

Back to my original question, If I wanted to rebarrel and I know for a fact where I am going they will have loads of 8mm mausers or 7.62x54 what would you guys recommend going to?
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Old April 27, 2009, 10:24 PM   #6
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According to my (old) books

cases for the 7.65mm Argentine (7.65x53mm) can be formed from .30-06 or 7.7 Arisaka brass. Case forming dies (at least in those days) could be had from several makers. Proper bullet diameter is .313, but .311 or .312 bullets are reputed to give accaptable accuracy. Norma makes ammo for this caliber.

Now, that info is from 1974, so may not be completely correct today (I don't know if Norma still lists the caliber). Norma is good quanitly ammo, but it isn't even remotely cheap.

Of the two rounds you are considering rebarreling to, only the 8mm Mauser is feasable. The 8mm case is longer, but the case head and rim diameter is very close, only .005 (or less) difference. The .303 British is not suitable, although it could be done, modifying the action to feed the rimmed round would be a major gunsmithing chore, and would not be even remotely economical. One could buy another rifle cheaper, most likely. Even the relatively simple rebarreling will cost you a bit, in parts (barrel) and labor, so you might want to consider it carefully.

Handloading for the original caliber would be the best way to go, if it were me, I would just set up to make my own ammo, and take it with me. If you are concerned with losing your ammo during travel, have some sent to your destination, in advance. Once you know it arrives, you are set, even if they somehow "lose" your ammo, some will be waiting for you when you get there.

Of course, if they loose your gun, you are SOL.

FYI, the 7.65 Mauser, 7.62x54R Russian, 7.7mm Japanese, and .303 British all use the same (.311-.312") diameter bullet, it is the cases that are different shapes and sizes.
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Old April 27, 2009, 11:05 PM   #7
MauserHunt
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Hello,
Thanks for the replies.
Norma still makes them, and like you said they are not cheap at all.
The cheapest I can get are the serbian prvi rounds which sell for about $15.70 + shipping now.(I bought some last month for $12, 25% in 1 month wow).

Like you, I want to reload and I know of an auction coming up where I can some of the gear I need.Wish me luck
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Old April 27, 2009, 11:10 PM   #8
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Argentine Mausers are becoming quite desirable these days. Since you already have two of them, have you considered selling one and using the money to buy something in a more common caliber?
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Old April 27, 2009, 11:23 PM   #9
MauserHunt
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I have considered selling one. I wouldn't buy another till I get to my destination and make sure my stuff won't get "lost".

Are you interested in buying one ?
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Old April 27, 2009, 11:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Are you interested in buying one ?
Even if I was, the finances simply aren't there at the moment. You shouldn't have too much trouble selling it if you can get some exposure to people who know what they're looking at. Argentine Mausers are considered to be some of the finest (Mauser actually built their export rifles to higher standards than the ones for the German military).
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Old April 28, 2009, 12:05 AM   #11
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Post pics of your rifle, we can give you some idea of the price range that exists, if you are going to Africa hunting, you need to look at prices here if you are quibbling over a few bucks for a rifle. The CHEAPEST african safari I have seen in years was 6 grand, plus airfare, Plus trophy fees plus shipping back any trophies you collect. I doubt you can do it for less than 12 K USD, so factor in another thousand for two 700 ADL remingtons, one in 260 or 270 one in 338 winmag or 300 winmag and your good to go.
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Old April 28, 2009, 12:24 AM   #12
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Hello,

I will post some pictures later maybe but I have a pretty good idea what I can get for it in a fire sale and what I can get for it if I have time.

I am not going on a safari. I am going to live there for a little bit and I hope to do some hunting while there. I won't be shooting elephants or any very large game, but I hope to score a deer or a small cat.
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Old May 20, 2009, 04:03 AM   #13
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This is one of them, it is all matching, carbine including the sling but only missing the cleaning rod.
I tapped this one in camo tape just to preserve the wood and it also helps with recoil. I had removed the military sights and used an SKS mount with a LER scope so she really looks like a nice tactical scout rifle.

I havent been shooting them much lately because the ammo is just getting harder to find and more expensive. unfortunately I did not get the press I was thinkign about so now I have to wait for another opportunity.
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Old May 20, 2009, 12:37 PM   #14
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The 7.65 argentine is a good cartridge. Stay with the original unless the bbl is worn out. Have a gunsmith headspace and slug the bore. Once you know what the bore size is, you will be able to select a bullet for it. Brass can be made from 30-06. RCBS used to make a forming die. I dont know if they still do. I have had mine for about 30 years.

The mod 91 action is a very smooth one. I wish I could say the same about the 98s. I have 3 in original configuration and one in sporter. Be careful not to load to max. Although the reciever is strong, the bolt only locks on the 2 lugs. All in all, the 91 is a very nice rifle.

I also cast .314 diameter 200gr gas check bullets for range shooting. The moulds are from lyman. They work quite well. For hunting I use 174 gr protected round point from woodleigh.
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Old May 21, 2009, 06:17 PM   #15
MauserHunt
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It is indeed a great cartridge. I keep hoping it makes a comeback like everything of the past eventually does but maybe the existence of the .308 will seal the fate.
I have tried both milsurp and prvi partzan. The milsurp is pretty crappy, and makes it kick harder. I have decided it was not worth it and I am only going to use prvi and hopefully reload when I get the necessary gear.
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Old May 22, 2009, 03:50 PM   #16
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I own 3x 7.65 Argentines, ammo is still made, but not by many companies.

The .313 bullet is close to the .311 (.312) used in the British .303. Confusing eh? Anyhow, you can load .311 bullets in the 7.65 cases.

As for the re-barreling... The 1891s are small ring mausers, and I think that it would cost more than the price of a new rifle to rebarrel an 1891. Further, the small ring actions aren't the ideal action for this, and are not as strong as the 1898 actions. Lastly, I'm not sure that you'd even find a barrel for 8mm or 303 that would fit a small ring action--as they're not available as far as I know. Add gunsmith time, the risks of firing something over 100 years old, and materials--you're much better off just buying a 375 H&H or 30.06, as they are certainly available in Africa. If I were going to Africa for a hunt, the last thing I'd want on my mind is ammo availability.

Argentine manufactured military surplus ammo has funny headstamp letterings like that you mentioned. It is corrosive and might glow for a while before you hear bang. I'd stick with new mfg from privi.
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