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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have two mosin's, a Russin M44 and a Finnish M39 (VKT if you care to know). I had the M44 slugged, it was .315. This isn't that surprising as I bought it 20 years ago and have put ~5000 rounds of corrosive surplus through it and didn't always give it the best care. Hey, it was my first personally purchased firearm and it set me back $50.

I'm looking into buying some PRVI 7.62x54r for my M39. I've heard the bore's are .308 and you cannot use the standard ammo as the bullets used in typical 7.62x54r is .311-.312?? I don't have much time for reloading, was curious if there's a commercial source for reasonably priced ammo that is loaded with the correct diameter bullets??
 

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Welcome to GunBoards!!...

...IIRC, it's the m28's, m28/30s, and m28/76s that typically have .308 bores...to my knowledge, the m39s should work with any surplus or commercial 7.62x54r ammo...

...other old-school members, please correct me if I am wrong... :thumbsup:
 

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Like Mosinator says, an M39 should be fine with PPU ammo, but if you want to be 100% sure of what things really are, slug the bore. No reason to pay to have it done, it is super simple and there are a few tutorials online. I use big buckshot or old fishing sinkers (new ones are too hard because they dont have lead).
 

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Like Mosinator says, an M39 should be fine with PPU ammo, but if you want to be 100% sure of what things really are, slug the bore. No reason to pay to have it done, it is super simple and there are a few tutorials online. I use big buckshot or old fishing sinkers (new ones are too hard because they dont have lead).
This.

Slug it to make sure. It's worth it, and you can log the result in a book for future reference for that particular rifle.
Pat
 

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If I recall correctly, M39s were made to be able to shoot captured Russian .312" surplus with steel bullets. Be sure to clean the same day if you use these! Mine likes the 180 grain a little better than the 150.

Privi uses soft lead and copper bullets. They may even be smaller than .312"(?), and will be safe to shoot (as long as they chamber without resistance).

I've never heard of anything happening worse than bad accuracy when using an over-sized bullet, as long as it fits in the throat with .001" - .002" clearance. With cast lead bullets a thousandth or two larger than the bore is always suggested (and works great!).

Not long ago I (accidentally) loaded and fired a .312" steel surplus bullet in a .308 Mauser during some load development. I noticed nothing unusual upon firing, wouldn't even have known except that the steel bullet was almost pristine after blasting through about 12" of 2x4. It had formed itself perfectly to the lands and groves of the barrel (nice sharp lands too), and grew a few thousandths in length. The brass extracted fine and there were no excessive pressure signs. The primer wasn't flattened at all! Not something I'd recommend doing, but shows that barrels are much tougher than even steel bullets.

I read about some testing (by I believe P.O.Ackley?) where a .30 caliber rifle was was re-chambered to .35 Remington (chamber only) and fired through the .30 caliber barrel with no excessive pressure signs. That squeezed the bullet down a lot and didn't hurt anything.

There is a guy currently (somewhere on the internet) installing .17 caliber barrels onto .22 long rifle actions....for improved accuracy? The bullets get squeezed down in diameter and grow to about twice the original length. Looks really weird!

Anybody heard of something bad happening with over-sized bullets? I mean first-hand, not internet rumors.

Again, I don't recommend it !
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've still got two unopened 440 cans of russian 147 grain corrosive. I plan on sticking with that stuff for my old M44 and keeping my excellent condition VKT M39 safe by using commercial stuff only.

I realize I just called my M44 old when it's actually newer than the M39. Well, it certainly doesn't look newer, but you know whaqt I meant.
 

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I was just shooting milsurp Russian light ball in my M39 yesterday with no problems and I have shot Prvi quite well, plus modern Russian light ball commercial, though that stuff has mighty hard primers.
That M39 rifle seems to like the Bulgarian yellow tip heavy ball best, though.
 

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M39 will be fine with Soviet surplus.
All Mosin bores have a certain degree of mystery in their history, so you never can be sure, but:

M39 : .310
M28/76 : depends on if it was made from an M28/30 or an M39
M28/30 : .3082
M28 : .3095
M27 : .3095

This is at birth, after that...?
 

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i know someome will call me a liar or words to that affect..but i have owned a ton of mn's..and never owned a 308...never!
fin 91/30
fin 28/30
91/30s
38's
59's
44's
39's
i shoot a lot of cast bullets so nearly every rifle i own has been slugged at the breech and the muzzle.
never a 308....never...
i have machine shop back ground, tons of precision mic work....never a 308.....
some 310's and bigger...never a 308....
having said all that if you go to sierra's books on loading they will tell you there is little diff in shooting 308 and 310/311.312 bullets.....
the most common bullet i shoot out of mn's is a 314 dia 210gr cast bullet....
all the win ammo for 7.62x54r was 308....
mike in co
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
AR10 man, it's interesting you make that point about the Winchester. I bought one box of it and it performed horribly out of my M44 so I figured why waste the money. Not to mention the local mom and pop took me for $22 for a box of it.
 

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If you are worried about keeping you M39 in good condition you only need TO give it the best of care. Like the others have said the M39 shoots most surplus well. Some M39s will shoot some of it very very well.
Make sure you clean it ASAP after shooting surplus ammo like within a couple of hours. Usually I give mine a "prevent" cleaning at the range then complete the job at home.
Like Mike I now shoot mostly cast bullets from mine. Shooting cast bullets at low velocity will not ware out the barrel in my or my kids life time or most likely theirs kids too. If your not making the high heat your not eroding the steel.
Motor
 

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I have two mosin's, a Russin M44 and a Finnish M39 (VKT if you care to know). I had the M44 slugged, it was .315. This isn't that surprising as I bought it 20 years ago and have put ~5000 rounds of corrosive surplus through it and didn't always give it the best care. Hey, it was my first personally purchased firearm and it set me back $50.

I'm looking into buying some PRVI 7.62x54r for my M39. I've heard the bore's are .308 and you cannot use the standard ammo as the bullets used in typical 7.62x54r is .311-.312?? I don't have much time for reloading, was curious if there's a commercial source for reasonably priced ammo that is loaded with the correct diameter bullets??
Privi will work great in your M39. What I have (200 rounds bought new) the bullets originally measured 0.311. All 4 of my (late date) M39s slugged 0.3105. Been segregating, neck sizing, and reloading this same brass for about a year and a half. Finally starting to get some neck splits. Don't forget to send your spent brass to me! Use Hornady 3120s (0.312) in the Soviet Mosins and Tikka 91/30 (it slugs 0.3115). Use Hornady 3131s (0.3105) in the M39s.

LMyer


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I read somewhere that if the M39 has a "D" stamped in the area where the date is on the barrel then it is chambered for the 7.62x54r cartridge. All of mine have the "D" stamp.
 

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I read somewhere that if the M39 has a "D" stamped in the area where the date is on the barrel then it is chambered for the 7.62x54r cartridge. All of mine have the "D" stamp.
I believe the "D" designation only applies to M27s that had chambers modified to shoot captured Russian ammo, as well as the more modern Finnish D-166 ball ammo. I understand that all M39s would shoot this ammo from the beginning.


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I believe the "D" designation only applies to M27s that had chambers modified to shoot captured Russian ammo, as well as the more modern Finnish D-166 ball ammo. I understand that all M39s would shoot this ammo from the beginning.

I have 1941,1942, and 1947 M39's and all have the "D" stamp. Maybe the people were just stamp happy.
 

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If I recall correctly, M39s were made to be able to shoot captured Russian .312" surplus with steel bullets. Be sure to clean the same day if you use these! Mine likes the 180 grain a little better than the 150.

Privi uses soft lead and copper bullets. They may even be smaller than .312"(?), and will be safe to shoot (as long as they chamber without resistance).

I've never heard of anything happening worse than bad accuracy when using an over-sized bullet, as long as it fits in the throat with .001" - .002" clearance. With cast lead bullets a thousandth or two larger than the bore is always suggested (and works great!).

Not long ago I (accidentally) loaded and fired a .312" steel surplus bullet in a .308 Mauser during some load development. I noticed nothing unusual upon firing, wouldn't even have known except that the steel bullet was almost pristine after blasting through about 12" of 2x4. It had formed itself perfectly to the lands and groves of the barrel (nice sharp lands too), and grew a few thousandths in length. The brass extracted fine and there were no excessive pressure signs. The primer wasn't flattened at all! Not something I'd recommend doing, but shows that barrels are much tougher than even steel bullets.

I read about some testing (by I believe P.O.Ackley?) where a .30 caliber rifle was was re-chambered to .35 Remington (chamber only) and fired through the .30 caliber barrel with no excessive pressure signs. That squeezed the bullet down a lot and didn't hurt anything.

There is a guy currently (somewhere on the internet) installing .17 caliber barrels onto .22 long rifle actions....for improved accuracy? The bullets get squeezed down in diameter and grow to about twice the original length. Looks really weird!

Anybody heard of something bad happening with over-sized bullets? I mean first-hand, not internet rumors.

Again, I don't recommend it !

IIRC, Frank De Haas wrote about similar tests with the Type 38 Arisaka, rechambered in .30-06, and the .308 bullet was fire "swaged" down the 6.5mm bore. The testers were shocked at how strong the Arisaka action was and how well it survived their "torture tests"
 

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Carbine - You downloaded Russian ammo "to 40 grains of powder". Does that mean that you left 40 grains of the original (maybe 48 ? grains of who-knows-what) powder that came in the round, in the original steel case, with the original corrosive primer, and then re-seated the original bullet, with a good crimp? Can you tell me what your "before" versus "after" groups were like ? How much lower on the target did they group ?

LMyer - I have some Hornady .312" RN bullets ready for my empty Privi brass. What powder and velocity have you found to work well in your Mosins ?

MP517 - I believe I've heard about those Arisaka strength tests. I figured they just used a bunch of fast-burning powder. Hearing how strong they are made me feel much better as a worked-up a load for a 'new' 7.7 several months ago.
 

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Carbine - You downloaded Russian ammo "to 40 grains of powder". Does that mean that you left 40 grains of the original (maybe 48 ? grains of who-knows-what) powder that came in the round, in the original steel case, with the original corrosive primer, and then re-seated the original bullet, with a good crimp? Can you tell me what your "before" versus "after" groups were like ? How much lower on the target did they group ?
I pulled the bullets and weighed the powder in the Russian and Bulgy ammo. I weighed the powder charge at 47 grains and reloaded the same cartridge with 40 grains of the same powder. I didn't use a crimp. The results in the M44s is they shoot lower by about 10" which is better in my case and they group tighter. One rifle shoots about 4-5" MOA and the other strings vertically. They also are easier on the shoulder. It doesn't take much time to do this. I plan on trying it in a scope mounted 91/30 and a M38.
I can't see any difference between the Bulgy and Russian ammo. The bullets, case, and charge are identical. The Russian has a painted silver tip bullet.
So far my best load is a brass case, IMR 4895 powder and a Sierra Match King in .311.
I'm not one that's very impressed with Mosin accuracy. I have M1 Garands and 1903s that shoot 2"-3" all day. I enjoy the challenge.
 

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Carbine -

Thanks for sharing your results. I agree about the challenge !

Haven't tried 4895 or Sierras. Mostly .312" bullets. I'd like a cast bullet load (really cheap) that shoots as good as surplus.....haven't found it yet. I only have one scoped Mosin and it does well with surplus, so I'm not experimenting feverishly. Surplus accuracy is good for me with open sights. Cheap and easy, I shoot a lot.

I've considered the "Mexican Match Reloads". (Not politically correct, but that's what I always hear them called.) Seemed like a lot of trouble. Maybe I'll reconsider.

Check your 'stringing' rifle for barrel contact with the stock/hand guard.
 
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