Question For Weapons Gurus

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by Not_Whistlin_Dixie, Mar 9, 2005.

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  1. Any of you fellows have experience shooting new (not reloaded) .308 ammunition from battle rifles chambered for 7.62 x 51 mm?

    They are not exactly the same cartridge. 7.62 x 51 mm is ~ .013" longer and has thicker case walls. I gather that reloading .308 brass that has been fired from a military rifle chambered for the other round is not practical.

    Did you have any headspace problems? Shell case failures? Anything else anomalous or unpleasant?

    What rifle were you using? I know FN/FAL used to be the UK service rifle.
  2. I think there is a lot of discussion on this topic on the various fora that specialise in military surplus weapons - particularly the ones with a bias to the Lee Enfield family. Try ParallaxBill, Milsurp after Hours or British Rifles, all on ezboards.

    My recollection is that the unpleasant things you mention are to be expected if you shoot commercial 0.308 in a 7.62 NATO weapon and then reload the case.

    Other than that, sorry, I can't help, as I just shoot Radway Green 7.62.
  3. No problems at all.

    The paranoia stems from the fact that the proof pressure for a .308 is higher than for the 7.62. You can therefore load a rifle proofed @.308 to a higher pressure than one proofed for 7.62mm. This is only likely to be a problem if you're loading top-end long-range loads (e.g. 190+gn bullet) & shooting lots of them. The thing that in reality prevents you from doing this with a battle rifle is that the longer bullet won't fit in your magazine. The other question that this poses is why in hell you'd want to do this with a battle rifle.

    Last week I shot a box of Magtech .308 (150gn bullets) in my British FAL (L1A1). I then reloaded the cases with S&B 147gn bullets. No problems. The only problem you'll get with reloading is that the cases won't last that long if you're full-length sizing, since the military chambers tend to be rather slacker than civvy ones.

    When loaded with similar bullets, 7.62x51mm and .308 Win are identical for all practical purposes! There are plenty of myths about regarding .308/7.62x51 and .223/5.56x45, so I expect a few to be repeated here...... :roll:
  4. Thanks, gentlemen.

    The weapon I specifically had in mind is the Springfield Armory M1A, the semi-automatic version of the M-14.

    I have access to a goodly supply of new Remington .308 ball, 165 grain bullet. The rounds fit the box magazine and feed into the chamber with no difficulty.

    My chief concern is that I don't want to damage a weapon, or myself, through excessive chamber pressure.
  5. Shouldn't be a problem with what you just said.

    With regard to the .308/7.62mm pressure difference, I have some Portuguese FNM NATO ammo (146gn) which runs at higher pressure than the Magtech 150gn .308 - I know this because I can run my FAL with the gas regulator right open (i.e. with minimum gas since it runs on the vent principle) with the FNM whereas I have to have it screwed in about 4 or 5 clicks with the Magtech. So your loads could indeed be lower pressure than NATO standard.

    OK, reality check - if you're running at pressures likely to damage your gun, you'll get high pressure signs on the ammo, which is highly unlikely with factory ammo (e.g. cratered primers, extractor tearing chunks from the rim, violent ejection, case head separation or tearing right through the rim in extreme cases). Proof pressure is miles above working pressure anyway!

    In other words, if it's commercially made & you can get it in the mag, it shouldn't be a problem.
  6. Thats the best advice you could get.
  7. The true differences are minor(PM for a link).
    Save the Remington for when you need it & buy surplus NATO 7.62x51 for blasting &/or range time.

    Keep well clear of Indian & Israeli(specifically TZ80 headstamp) for use in semi-auto's.

    Austrian, Portugese, Aussie, Brit & South African are all good surplus & cost around $180/1000
  8. Speaking of milsurp ammo worth avoiding, let me warn you off of Venezuelan CAVIM 7.62 x 51 mm.

    It clogs the weapon with some sort of reddish-colored glue-like substance. I've never seen anything like it. You shoot a couple of magazines, then spend the rest of the day cleaning.
  9. Avoid Mil surplus at all costs, as they have corrosive primers.

    Other than working pressures there is no difference between the two rounds, and can be fired with confidence. Make sure that you are using the same bullet weight if you have fixed sights, as a lighter round will have a highter MPI than the standard military round. I belive most Military rifles are zeroed using 165 grain spire points, so if you have those you will be fine.
  10. The vast majority of Milsurp 7.62 now on the market is non-corrosive, unlike a lot of older stuff eg. .303 & /54R
    The 7.62x51 has a bullet weight of 147grains or thereabouts. Theres a lot of spec's for various Nation's ammunition here: