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Does anyone know what the Indians used? I heard, most likely incorrectly, that the Indians used West German 7.62x51 NATO?
The Indians produced 7.62 X51 under British supervision, which was decent ammo (I have a bunch of it). After the Brits departure the QC went down hill and it became dangerous as surplus. PAX
 

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The Indians produced 7.62 X51 under British supervision, which was decent ammo (I have a bunch of it). After the Brits departure the QC went down hill and it became dangerous as surplus. PAX
I’m sure the Brits left long before India made 7.62x51 ammo…but the Olin folks who set them up did ensure decent ammo at OFV…for a bit with crap to follow.
 

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I first saw these in Indian police hands in 1965. I could not tell what it was because of the unique magazine. i could not get close enough to tell more or ask anyone as the local small town indian police only brought them out if they expected a demonstration. I bought several when they came here and kept one in excellent all matching condition. You have a wonderful buy and am sure you will enjoy it.
 

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I’m sure the Brits left long before India made 7.62x51 ammo
The 'Brits' left India when they got their independance in 1947.
Winchester developed the T65 range of cartridges in 1952
NATO adopted the T65E5 experimental cartridge as their 'standard cartridge' in 1954 and renamed it NATO 7.62 x 51

It was in 1950 that Ishapore changed the specification for the steel used in the No1 Mk3,it didn't work very well but rather than 'lose face' and revert back to the 'proper specified' steel they amended the proof tests until it passed. It was this steel they initially used for the 2A production, (with even worse results) before reverting back to the 'proper' British specified steel for the 2A / 2A1. The No1 Mk3 remained using the 'lower' grade of steel.


Extract from “Gun Digest 33rd Anniversary 1979 Deluxe Edition”

Article Author : Mr A G Harrison

Qualification : Former ‘Proof Master’ of the ‘Rifle Factory Proof House, Ishapore, India’

From 1908 to 1950 all military bolt action rifles made at Ishapore were proof tested with a dry-round, followed with by an oiled proof round. The proof cartridge was loaded to 24 tons psi breech pressure, or 15% higher than the service pressure. In 1950 (after the departure, in 1947, of India from British control) the material for the rifle bodies was altered from an EN steel to SWES 48 steel with the recoil shoulder and cam recesses being heat treated. With this change the rifle receivers distorted when oiled proof cartridges were fired. This was discovered when hard and sometimes impossible bolt retraction was experienced. Large quantities of rifles were rejected.

To avoid rejections the authorities ordered discontinuance of the oiled proof round. Therefore from 1950 to the end of SMLE production, rifles made at Ishapore were proof tested with one dry proof only, although the specification still called for both dry and oiled proof. All bolts and bolt heads issued as spares were always proofed with a dry proof round only.

A bolt action rifle similar to the SMLE MkIII*, modified to fire the 7.62mm NATO cartridge, was produced at Ishapore, first in February 1965. The receivers were made of SWES 48 steel (as per the SMLE MkIII*) and with the NATO proof cartridge the receivers were found to distort with both the dry and oiled proof round. The material was changed back to the EN steel so now the rifles stand up better to dry and oiled proof. After passing proof the barrels are impressed with the Indian national proof stamp. The bolt handles and bolt head claws are struck with the crossed flags only.
 

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For a "lower pressure" round, you can use the 7.62x51 CETME, or handload to its equivalent.

Thanks for posting the Ishy proof info AdE. Can never see that out here too much.
 

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For a "lower pressure" round, you can use the 7.62x51 CETME, or handload to its equivalent.

Thanks for posting the Ishy proof info AdE. Can never see that out here too much.
The Indian proof house was a bit of a law unto itself, and 'rules;' were amended to suit what they had available - this is from the same article :



Font Material property Paper Publication Document
 

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I
^^^
forehead slap
It makes me smile / worry when you see that the Indian Black Powder proof is a mish-mash of proof marks, ie.

The Ashoka (Indian mark) over
BP (means Birmigham proof) over
Not Nitro (means London proof)

I suppose it is a bit like the CE marking where it means "Conformite European" and the CE mark meaning 'Chinese Export' which is commonly used as a 'fake' CE (European) marking.

The only difference is that on the Chinese version the "E" is slightly inset ito the circumference of the "C"

Product Font Material property Circle Logo
 

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For a "lower pressure" round, you can use the 7.62x51 CETME, or handload to its equivalent.

Thanks for posting the Ishy proof info AdE. Can never see that out here too much.
The Spanish CETME round has the SAME chamber pressure as their 7.62NATO ammunition. The Spanish ammunition data sheets show this.
The CETME round was loaded to produce lower recoil in full auto fire, not to have a lower chamber pressure. To get proper powder burn and acceptable velocity variation it was loaded to standard modern chamber pressure levels.

Some have said only the MAX psi level is listed on the data sheets….some one needs to test these two rounds before we know for sure.
 

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The Indians first produced the 7.62x51 NATO (M80 ball ) at the "Ordnance Factory Varangaon" (Bhusaval, Maharashtra, India) in 1972

M80 has a chamber pressure of 50,000 PSI
Their part number was / is "SAA 2400"., and the "OFV" headstamp is shown below.


Artifact Font Circle Button Metal



Ordnance Factory Varangaon is engaged in manufacturing of small arms ammunition required by Army, Navy, Air force as well as various units of Ministry of Home Affairs. OFV was established in 1964 and started production in 1965. Ordnance Factory Varangaon, One of the prominent member of a family of 41 ordnance factories, is located on the bank of river Tapti in the Maharashtra state. The factory is stretched in approx. 3500 acres with a dedicated band of committed workforce, staff and officers working round the clock, the factory is always busy in meeting the requirements of services and para-military units in quality and quantity as per laid down time schedule. OFV is certified with Integrated Management System (ISO-9001, ISO14001 & ISO18001) and Energy Management System ISO 50001:2011 from BIS
 

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So the story of superior steel used to make these guns is false
Thanks for setting it straight
Maybe it started because in 1965 India had 25% of the worlds iron ore and it was/is of the purest
But their steel making facilities were not the best
 

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So the story of superior steel used to make these guns is false
Thanks for setting it straight
Correct.
The 2A & 2A1s are manufactured from the same steel as the Brits specified for the No1 Mk3 (but, the Ishapore No1 Mk3s, after 1950 used a lower grade than specified).

Many years ago Peter laidler tried to 'kill off the rumour' of the 2A / 2A1 using a superior steel when he was at the Infantry Small Arms School at Warminster.
He purchased a dozen of them from the 'open market' and had them metalurgically examined at a local University Engineering Department and the results are interesting.

The examination showed that within manufacturing tolerances the steel was identical to the reference No1 Mk3 example that was tested alongside them. A couple of them even had scrubbed markings, which under the microscope proved to be "No1 Mk3".

India is a dark, secretive and mysterious place - it is only within the last few years that Peter Laidler managed to get the correct headspace figures for the 2A / 2A1 from his contact within the Indian Army Liasion team (and the headspace is NOT the same as 308 !)


Rectangle Font Parallel Slope Diagram
 

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The quality of the Indian steel in their later Mk3s and 2A/A1 comes up again and again. I get the history, but what I'm not hearing is whether the materials are ever going to be really stressed beyond their capabilities in the field. Using proof cartridges and custom loads, sure, I would buy that argument, but are there any documented catastrophic failures of either rifle using any commercially available or military surplus ammo?
 

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The quality of the Indian steel in their later Mk3s and 2A/A1 comes up again and again. I get the history, but what I'm not hearing is whether the materials are ever going to be really stressed beyond their capabilities in the field. Using proof cartridges and custom loads, sure, I would buy that argument, but are there any documented catastrophic failures of either rifle using any commercially available or military surplus ammo?
A very good question - I have not heard of any catastrophic failures of 2A or 2A1 rifles due to ammunition, BUT, I am in a small corner of the world and am not going out looking for such information.

What should be remembered is that stress in steel has a cumulative effect which will lead to failure. Using ammunition 'hotter' or with heavier bullets than the rifle was designed for will lead to increased pressures and additional stresses.
It may not fail today, it may not fail for 10 years but there is a good chance that at some point in the future, repeated use of ammunition exhibiting greater pressures than designed for, will lead to failure.

At the end of the day we are all only 'plinking' (normally at paper targets) either use the original M80 NATO ammunition, or load your own slightly 'downloaded' rounds but enjoy your shooting and stay-safe.
 

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Alan, thanks for posting in clear language the potential risks associated with 2A/ 2A1 rifles. I'll just consider the 2A1 on hand as a collectable in shooting condition rather than a shooting rifle that is collectable.
 

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It is not only the 2A or 2A1 the L42A1 all the No4s that were converted to 7.62 are in the mix. The number of times i have explained to people that No4 is a conversion from 303 not a 308 and that they are firing proof loads or heavier. is no joking matter.
 

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What Bindi2 said /\. I've posted this before and here it is again.
"Safety Alert to users of modified Military Rifles", issued by the National Rifle Association of Australia.

And following the uproar after the UK NRA made a total ban on Lee Enfields being used with either 7.62 or 308, they issued a revised 'rule' as follows :


NRA Safety Notice re No 4 7.62mm Conversions

This is the current stance of the NRA safety warning which first appeared in the Summer NRA Journal:

Safety Notice
Enfield No 4 Rifle Conversions to 7.62mm


A safety warning concerning the use of Enfield No 4 Rifle actions converted to 7.62mm was published in the Summer 2010 Journal.

After further consideration of all factors influencing safety of these conversions and consultation with the Birmingham Proof Master, the following advice must be adhered to in respect of the use of Enfield No 4 conversions:

• Owners of Enfield No 4 actioned rifles converted to 7.62mm currently proofed to 19 tons per square inch are strongly advised to have them re-proofed to the current CIP standard (requiring a minimum mean proof pressure of 5190 bar) which allows the use of CIP approved ammunition with a Maximum Average Working Pressure (MAWP) of 4150 Bar.
• Conversions retaining their original Enfield barrel or a replacement barrel as manufactured by RSAF Enfield are safe to use with commercial CIP approved ammunition, which complies with a MAWP of 4150 bar, loaded with any weight of bullet, providing they carry a valid proof mark, and are still in the same condition as when submitted for proof.
• Conversions fitted with any other make of barrel (such as Ferlach, Maddco, Krieger etc) should be checked by a competent gunsmith to determine the throat diameter of the chamber/barrel fitted before use.
• Conversions where the throat diameter is less than the CIP specification of 0.311” but not smaller than 0.3085” must not be used with ammunition which exceeds 3650 Bar MAWP when fired in a SAAMI/CIP pressure barrel.
• Conversions which have been checked and found to comply with Rule 150 may safely be used with any ammunition supplied by the NRA including the 155 grain Radway Green Cartridge, 155 grain RUAG Cartridge or any other commercial CIP Approved cartridges loaded with bullets of any weight provided that the ammunition pressure does not exceed 3650 Bar when measured in a CIP standard barrel.
• Owners of Enfield No 4 actioned rifles converted to 7.62mm who are uncertain as to the proof status of the rifle should have it checked by a competent gunsmith.
• Owners of Enfield No 4 actioned rifles in any calibre are strongly advised not to use them in wet weather or without removing all traces of oil from action and chamber prior to shooting.
• Enfield No 4 rifles which are fitted with a barrel which has a throat diameter less than 0.3085” must not be used on Bisley Ranges.
• Ammunition loaded with bullets of any weight which are of greater diameter than the throat diameter of the barrel must not under any circumstances be used on Bisley Ranges in any rifle or barrel of any manufacture.
 

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There is some useful information coming out in this thread - maybe relevant extracts / posts could be taken and a 'sticky' produced outlining the care that needs to be taken when using 7.62 Enfields ?

Justa thought.
 
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