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Old October 10, 2011, 02:23 PM   #1
KnightofCydonia
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Husqvarna Commercial M96 vs Commercial FN98 in 8x57

Hi,

I was wondering which rifle is adequate for the 8x57 round. How are the commercial M96's? From My understanding, the Swedes used surplus M96 actions to make these rifles and chambered them in other offerings besides 6.5x55. Are these actions safe for hot loads of 8mm mauser? Also, when they say 'commercial' is the Husky 96 action just the surplus action and barrel with a commercial stock on it? How do these guns differ from M96 sporters? Are the sporters the same thing but with the original military stock 'sporterized'?

Also, later on, Husqvarna used FN 98 actions and built rifles using these actions. Now the 98 is stronger action and can definitely handle the 8mm mauser round. However, is it worth the extra $100-150 that is usually charged for the stronger action?

I guess the question is whether the Belgian FN 98 action is miles ahead better than the Swedish M96 action in terms of handling the 8x57 round, and is worth the extra money.

And from my understanding, the stocks, barrels etc. should be the same right?

Thanks for the help.
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Old October 11, 2011, 10:13 AM   #2
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Strength of the action is likely immaterial for the 8mm Mauser. 8x57 isn't loaded that hot. Neither the 6.5x55 or the 8mmMauser present any difficult for either action.

Are those husqvarna M96s converted to cock on opening?

As a kid who started out hunting with a cock on closing Swede 94 (unamusing when you're 11 and have to work the bolt like a frightened Tommy at Verdun to have a chance at cycling it), I have to say I'm not generally a big fan of cock on closing actions like the 94 and 96.
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Old October 11, 2011, 10:44 AM   #3
KnightofCydonia
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No they are cock on closing. They are just commercialized so there's no stripper clip guide or thumb cut out.
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Old October 11, 2011, 11:55 AM   #4
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Ask yourself if you would put a 30-06 into that action to answer the question. I have seen many M96s converted to 9X57, a once-popular medium-pressure hunting round in Europe, and I have seen some converted to 8X57. It is hard for me to say if the 8X57s would hold up, but that would not be my first concern. I would be more concerned about parts availability and what would happen if the action was subjected to a case failure (think "hot gas in my face"), the M96 does not have a gas flange like the M98.

I have seen some of the Husqvarna M98s, and they are very nice guns, but the receivers are drilled and tapped with different front-rear hole spacing than commercial FN M98s, so finding a base is difficult. Nice actions, though.
Quote:
8x57 isn't loaded that hot.
US ammo manufacturers download the 8X57, but loaded to its full potential (like European ammo makers do), it is an entirely different cartridge.

Stocks and barrels are not the same, the M96 is a small-ring Mauser action, and the M98 is a large ring Mauser action. Two totally different beasts.
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Old October 11, 2011, 12:23 PM   #5
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The Swedish Army used to use a heavy (now called medium) Browning machine gun in 8x63mm and also used rifles in the same caliber for crew members. The standard rifle and light machine gun cartridge was the 6.5x55. Although the rifle was a Model 96 Mauser, the more powerful cartridge was chambered in a Model 98 but they are probably rare. Apparently they didn't think the older rifle was good enough but that doesn't mean it isn't strong enough for 7.62.
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Old October 11, 2011, 12:29 PM   #6
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The M96 is STRONG enough, but it is not SAFE enough. The gas venting features of the M98 are absent on the M96. The m96 action will handle pretty much any SAAMI standard round, up until the point when over 40,000 psi of gas is vented directly back along the bolt into the shooters eye.

The gas vents in the M98 bolt, the gas flange on the bolt shroud, all add up to a safer action. The "third bolt lug" on the M98 is just a safety feature and adds no strength to the final lock up (it is only there to catch the bolt if the two front lugs fail).

So there is your answer, I would not shoot full power 8x57 loads through any M96 action.

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Old October 11, 2011, 01:41 PM   #7
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A little on-like research turned up the supposed fact that those Swedish M98 Mausers chambered in 8x63mm originally were standard 8mm Mausers that were rechambered for the more powerful cartridge. They were later fitted with muzzle brakes. There were about 5,000 of these rifles.
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Old October 11, 2011, 04:51 PM   #8
KnightofCydonia
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Thanks for clearing that up boys. I'm settling on a Husqvarna Commercial M98 in either 8x57 and 30-06. Any opinions? I'm getting Euro loads for 8mm mauser. Will be hunting deer, moose.
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Old October 12, 2011, 12:32 AM   #9
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That is a good choice, but between 8x57 and 30-06 the Moose won't be able to tell the difference ;-)

However, I never turn down a good commercial Mauser action. My Husqvarna m98 is a 30-06.

Good hunting.

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Old October 12, 2011, 01:08 AM   #10
KnightofCydonia
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What are some nice 1 piece bases with weaver pattern that would work? I also like the look of a vintage scope like a Weaver K4 on it. Would that be good?
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Old October 12, 2011, 01:17 AM   #11
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Here's the rub with Husqvarna M98 and 1-piece bases:
They use the same length hole spacing as the M96, but an M96 base won't fit because of the large front ring.
Military 98 bases have the proper hole spacing, but since there are no stripper guide lips, there will be a gap under the rear of a one-piece base.
Rear hole spacing is correct if you use a 2-piece base, but base height may be an issue.

So try a few different bases and see what works, but I would bet you will end up with a 2-piece.
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Old October 12, 2011, 03:57 AM   #12
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An M96 is what is known as a Small Ring action and the 98 is what is known as a Large Ring mauser (the stocks, barrels ect are different). While you could probably could rechamber a 96 to take a 8mm mauser (8x57) it wouldn't be safe. I know a good friend tried to get and old M96 rechambered to a 22-250 and the few Gunsmiths we took it to wouldnt touch it (they said even though it was a good size the pressures are to high for the M96 action). I know of a number of people (my father included) who have had rifles built on Mauser actions and they always use Large Ring actions (so yes I think they are worth the extra money).

A Small Ring Mauser action is approx 1.300" at the ring and a Large Ring Mauser action is approx 1.410 at the ring.
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Old October 12, 2011, 10:27 AM   #13
Jimro
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Any base for a "Commercial FN" should fit, although you may have to have a 'smith drill and tap another hole in the rear bridge.

Jimro
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