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Old July 14, 2017, 10:16 PM   #26
ibfestus
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The German Mauser's were designed to shoot war time produced ammunition from many different sources, including steel cased, corrosive, slave made, and other cobbled together non spec ammo.

On the eastern front in Russia. if it would chamber and go bang, they used it.

As to accuracy, that all depends on the particular rifle. What shoots accurately in gun A, may be worthless in gun B.

Bottom line, what is the best ammo for your Mauser... there ain't one.

Ah, BTW, the myth that Mausers have become some kind of collector prize is right for maybe 10% of the times. The other 90% are Bubbaized guns that make great shooters and will do everything a 30-06 or a .308 can do... and sometimes better.
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Old July 15, 2017, 01:35 AM   #27
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Quote:
The German Mauser's were designed to shoot war time produced ammunition from many different sources, including steel cased, corrosive, slave made, and other cobbled together non spec ammo.
No, actually they weren't designed for that. It was the excellence of the peacetime design that allowed the use of "ammo from different sources".

Everything was corrosive primed in those days. Slave labor in ammo plants didn't exist when the 98k was designed.

Certainly, soldiers on the sharp end will use (or make and use) anything that goes bang, but no guns are designed FOR that.
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Old July 16, 2017, 09:54 PM   #28
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German K.98k's weren't "designed to shoot" some kind of inferior wartime ammo any more than U.S. M1 rifles were. German wartime quality control on ammunition was excellent right to the end. This is especially remarkable because (contrary to most US practice), components were not always made in the same factory. German ammo box codes often show primers, powder and cases made in different factories with the ammunition loaded in yet another factory. Yet (local conditions always excepted), the German army never lacked for ammunition and many thousands of tons were left over when hostilities ceased.

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Old July 17, 2017, 03:03 PM   #29
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Despite the overwhelming intensity of the aerial campaign against Germany, the Allies were never able to "kill" German weapons production. Some systems (like heavy tanks) were seriously delayed and interrupted but never destroyed. We managed to virtually destroy FUEL production, and seriously damage the transportation system (and here, lack of fuel was also a huge effect), but the Germans became masters of dispersing production of many weapons systems.

its a little known fact, but it is a fact that German fighter plane production ROSE every nearly every month from the middle of the war on, and in the last few months, including the very last months, fighter plane production was higher than any other time in the war.

They couldn't USE those planes, due to lack of fuel, and lack of skilled pilots, but they did manage to build ever increasing numbers of them, in well dispersed locations.

Compared to that, small arms and ammunition for them was relatively simple.

Getting them to where they could be used was the difficult part.
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Old July 17, 2017, 10:01 PM   #30
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I once met a man who, as a U.S. Army Captain, had been in charge of inventorying a German small arms depot in France. I now forget the exact numbers, but in addition to millions of rounds of standard steel case 7.9 ammo, they had several million rounds of brass case ammo, which had been made for the Luftwaffe and turned back because it failed primer ignition tests and could have blown the propellers off German fighter planes.

There would have been no problems with rifles and ground MG's though.

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Old July 19, 2017, 12:32 PM   #31
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Phile Sharpe says something similar in The Rifle In America, IIRC - at RWS they found barrels full of perfectly serviceable brass cases that had been rejected by the Luftwaffe as not up to standard. He used them repeatedly.
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Old July 19, 2017, 09:45 PM   #32
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I got a PM questioning the meaning of my remark about blowing off propellers, so here is a brief tutorial. One of the best places to put machine guns or cannon in a fighter plane is in the fuselage, but in most WWII fighters, that is also where the engine is. So the guns were sometimes arranged over/beside/under the engine. But that meant they had to fire through the propeller arc and careful timing was needed to make sure the bullets from the gun(s) did not strike the propeller, obviously an "ungood" situation. The usual arrangement was to cause the propeller blade to fire the gun, but even then, the ammunition had to function perfectly with no ignition delay or a bullet could strike the blade.

Today's jets don't have propellers so the guns (or equivalent weapons) can be put about anywhere convenient. .

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Old July 19, 2017, 10:14 PM   #33
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It was during WW I that mounting the armament on the center line of the aircraft was discovered to increase the ease of aiming. The British mounted a Lewis gun on the top wing of some planes, but that had its own issues.

One of the French aces (Roland Garros) mounted a machinegun on the engine cowling, to fire through the propeller arc. He fitted steel "deflector" plates on the wooden propeller, and this did work, sort of, though he still "shot himself down" on occasion.

It was Antony Fokker who developed the "interrupter gear", a linkage system that interrupted the machinegun's "trigger pull" at the right time so the propeller blade could pass in front of the gun muzzle without getting shot. It was a huge advantage, for a time, but after a few of the Fokkers were shot down and the wrecks studied, the Allies quickly created their own version.

If you listen to any of the movies with biplanes firing cowl guns (AND the sound effects are done RIGHT) the guns don't sound like normal ground machineguns when they fire. Instead of continuous bursts like the ground gun, they "stutter", because the firing is interrupted for the propeller passage.

Cowl guns were a feature of many pre-WWII designs. Germany's ME-109 and FW-190 used them the entire war. Early war US fighters (the P-39, and early models of the P-40) had a pair of .50 cal cowl guns, and .30s in the wings. Later P-40s dispensed with the cowl guns and put .50s in the wings.

Most Japanese fighters had cowl guns, and so did those of many other nations, and all of them used some version of the interrupter gear, to keep from shooting their propellers off.

It is a matter of very precise timing, to interrupt the stream of bullets ONLY long enough for the propeller to pass in front of the muzzle, and ammo that MIGHT hang fire, even by just fractions of a second could be a rather bad thing indeed. The same ammo that didn't pass muster for a cowl mounted machinegun would be perfectly fine in a ground mount gun, or any other gun that didn't fire through the propeller arc.
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Old July 20, 2017, 01:03 PM   #34
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And the P-38 solved the problem in another way.

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Old July 20, 2017, 04:47 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James K
Today's jets don't have propellers so the guns (or equivalent weapons) can be put about anywhere convenient.
Assuming of course that the ejected cases and propellant gases aren't ingested by the engines, which could cause catastrophic damage in the former case, and compressor stalls in the latter case. Just sayin'.

Of course, I guess this could be considered "convenient" placement, as flameouts tend to be inconvenient.
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...the P-38 solved the problem in another way.
And as it relates to 7.92x57mm ammo and Germany, so did the Messerschmitt Bf 110 and Me 410.

One wonders if the suspect brass-cased ammo could have been used in these aircraft and assorted bombers where propeller synchronization wasn't a factor, but this would require keeping it segregated, and establishing safeguards to keep it from being loaded into a Bf 109 by accident. Given that the Luftwaffe was known for being politically favored by Hitler, it was presumably more expedient to dump the "bad" ammo on the Wehrmacht.
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Old Yesterday, 11:26 AM   #36
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8x57mm - so called "Mauser" rifle ammunition

Get a copy of Cartridges of the World by Frank Barnes; published by Gun Digest Press.

The 8x57mm cartridge is discussed in reasonable detail in various incarnations, from the initial loading for the 1888 Infantry Rifle and following. Those being the 1898 Mauser rifle and the shortened K98 rifle.

I'm not going to reprint it here and the book is seriously useful to anyone interested in various cartridges for whatever reasons.

Short version, the K98 rifle was issued and intended for use with the 1905 version of the cartridge, a 154 grain Spitzer FMJ at about 2880 fps in the rifle length barrel (about 30 inches) and around 2750 fps in the K98 version (about 23.6 inches).

To my knowledge, no commercial concern manufactures the updated, 1905 "JS" loading. Most everything has a 196 to 200 grain spitzer bullet loaded rather soft. Except for a few residual cartridges with usually Berdan and corrosive primers, the only way to get actual "JS" loaded ammunition is to load it. Loading manuals are full of information.
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Old Yesterday, 10:24 PM   #37
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The Model 98 was originally made for the Model 1888 cartridge (the so-called 8x57J) with a bullet of .318" diameter. (It could not have been made for the JS bullet (.323" diameter), which was not adopted until 1905). When the new bullet was adopted, Model 98's already issued were recalled and rebarrelled for the new cartridge. The major concern was not the bullet diameter, but the chamber neck, which was too small to allow case neck expansion and bullet release, sending pressures sky high.

Some Model 1888 rifles were altered to take the new ammo and clips, they were altered by reaming the chamber neck and part of the leade, and by fitting a clip guide. Mostly, though, old ammunition was issued in en-bloc clips which would not fit the new rifles, while the new ammo was issued in "stripper" clips which would not work in the unaltered old rifles.

Added: US companies load the 8x57 with a .323" bullet but to a low (35-40k psi) pressure because there are still a lot of WWI souvenir M1888 rifles and carbines around. Most factories in Europe and elsewhere load ONLY the JS version (.323" bullet) to around 50k+ psi. A few do load the 8x57J, so it is a good idea to make sure what rifle and ammo is involved. (All WWII military rifles use the JS ammunition.)

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Old Today, 12:50 AM   #38
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Some Model 1888 rifles were altered to take the new ammo and clips, they were altered by reaming the chamber neck and part of the leade,
I have seen information stating that the 98 rifles were not actually rebarreled, but simply modified this way, by reaming the throat. No idea if it is correct, or not, but it would have been much cheaper than replacing the entire barrel, and it would have worked just fine.

One thing that I've consistently seen in all reports is that all the rifles in service when the new .323" bullet was adopted WERE modified to safely shoot it. Some say rebarreled, others say barrels reamed. Reality is probably a bit of both.
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Old Today, 02:38 PM   #39
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Short version, the K98 rifle was issued and intended for use with the 1905 version of the cartridge, a 154 grain Spitzer FMJ at about 2880 fps in the rifle length barrel (about 30 inches) and around 2750 fps in the K98 version (about 23.6 inches).
The 1903 S Patrone was used through WW1, and longer by some. Turkey used it into the 1950s, and Romania was making it into the early 1970s. Most everyone else followed Germany's lead from 1933 when they introduced the s.S. Patrone, a heavy ~198gr boat tail. When the OP's rifle was made in 1943 this was the standard.

Quote:
To my knowledge, no commercial concern manufactures the updated, 1905 "JS" loading. Most everything has a 196 to 200 grain spitzer bullet loaded rather soft. Except for a few residual cartridges with usually Berdan and corrosive primers, the only way to get actual "JS" loaded ammunition is to load it. Loading manuals are full of information.
Prvi does make ammo with a light hunting bullet at 139 grains. Well, they list it on their site anyway, both for 8X57IS and 8mm Mauser, but I have never actually seen it for sale anywhere. Nobody makes 1903 S Patrone that I am aware of, probably because for the most part the heavier bullet is better, particularly at longer ranges.

What you can get from US manufacturers is generally under-powered. Remington's and Winchester's only offerings is 170 gr @ 2360fps. Federal's only option is even wimpier 170gr @ 2250 FPS.
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