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Old February 4, 2009, 12:30 AM   #1
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Anyone familiar with the M1916 Spanish Mauser Rifle chambered in 308 Win??
My friend's getting one and I have no clue about the gun.

Any info?? appreciate it!!
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Old February 4, 2009, 08:32 AM   #2
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It's an old 7mm rechambered to 7.62 CETME (an underpowered 7.62 NATO), not quite .308. In fact, civilian .308 is not considered particularly safe in these or the FR-7. Military 7.62x51 is generally considered safe. .308 is a little too hot and has a chamber pressure that approaches or exceeds the failure pressure.
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Old February 4, 2009, 11:28 AM   #3
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Hmmm. I had heard some of the Spanish conversions were safer than others? Maybe something like the safer ones have some sort of letter marking on them or so? Maybe www.surplusrifle.comforums would have someone who knows the specifics. If you are getting into surp guns, that is a good forum to have access to besides this one. I also never had one, as I had read at the time of the alledged weaknesses of the Spanish rifles. But I think it depends on which model was converted so the warnings may have exceptions. You know how a story gets started about a particular gun and then it gets passed along as just a comment or something. Sort of like Spanish handguns, varying from horrible and not reliable or safe, to the modern models that are perfectly comparable to other similiar guns for quality.
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Old February 4, 2009, 12:00 PM   #4
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there was a thread a while ago about a burst FR-7 sold on GB. Apparently the cause was a handload that the shooter used. Never trust one that you didn't do yourself.

The action is a '93 mauser action. Same as a 1916 civil guard. The rifle should be just fine, but I was just saying that it was designed for a lighter charge load than a .308 WIN.
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Old February 4, 2009, 02:21 PM   #5
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Yep, I have one.

Indeed, the M16 is a refurb sort of '93 Spanish Mauser. I believe that makes it a "small ring" so many would tell you it's not up to the strength and safety standard as an M98. Some eons ago, the Spanish Guardia (their National Guard) was issued these rifles after they were converted to the CETME cartridge.

I've shot factory .308 in mine, but have always reloaded for it rather gently. As noted the CETME is dimensionally a .308, but has been historically loaded to lower pressures than, say, NATO spec 7.62x52mm ammo.

In my opinion, the rifle is representative of its generation of Mausers: strong action within limits, handy, sturdy, reliable. You might have to be watchful of handloading with short bullets like 110gr varmint loads, because the 7x57mm that it was designed for is significantly longer - shorter rounds sometimes hang up on feeding.

The sights on mine are nearly useless - the barleycorn front sight can't be drift adjusted (I don't think) and the tiny rear sight v-notch together make for a nearly impossible sight picture. Since it's not a museum piece by any stretch of the imagination, I'm contemplating Lyman iron sights or maybe a scope mount. The inherent accuracy is fairly standard for its type of rifle. I can hold a 3" group at 100 yards if I do my part.

I consider it handy enough to keep as a "truck gun," since it's not nearly so long as the loooong barrel that the '93 had originally. Even fairly mild 308 reloads pack plenty of punch for my own purposes.

Bottom line: I paid under $150 for mine some years back, and I'd spend it again.
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Old February 11, 2009, 08:08 AM   #6
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1916 is converted to shoot 7.62NATO not CETME, the 1967 Spanish manual clearly shows 7.62NATO on the cover. I can not remember where I find the picture on internet, below is what i saved in my harddrive.

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Old February 11, 2009, 10:57 PM   #7
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Good little gun

I had one of these for many years, recently traded it off. The same stories were going around 20 years ago when I bought mine regarding the perceived "weakness" of this particular action. Most anything can be blown up with a hot handload. I never worried much about mine, shot it a lot with cheap surplus 7.62 X 51. Stay away from hot .308 hunting loads and no worries IMHO.
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Old February 15, 2009, 10:57 AM   #8
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Bottom line 7.62X51 NATO and commercial 308 Winchester should be considered a different caliber.

The 308 is over 10K CUP higher pressure and as mention should not be used in the Spanish 308 as it is called.

It can stretch the action leading to eventual failure and possible injury or worse.
Er on the side of caution and either use ammo marked with a the NATO cross inside a circle or loaded to about 40K CUP for hand loading.

As for the rear site, agree and a square file should open that up to improve ease of sighting.

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