Any Arisaka shooters out there?


September 6, 2007, 06:07 AM
I happened across a very well done arisaka sporter yesterday and can't stop thinking that I'd like to have it. My only worry is the 7.7 chambering, can comercial ammo still be found for these things? The store selling the rifle didn't have any. It is gone as far as a historically correct piece, it has been reblued, the mum is gone, and it has an aftermarket walnut sporter stock. This rifle is perfect for what I am looking for in a hunting rifle, it is a bolt gun with iron sights for $200. Any thoughts or input would help. Thanks

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September 6, 2007, 06:28 AM
Norma does make 7.7x58mm ammo, but it's pretty pricey($40/ 20 rnds). Alternatively reloading dies are made by Lee and RCBS, and supplies can be bought through MidwayUSA and other online retailers.

September 6, 2007, 10:26 AM
If you're going to shoot any sort of volume, it's a reloader-only caliber.

Edit - I think $200 is overpriced for a sporterized Arisaka - you can get decent "correct" ones for about that price still.

September 6, 2007, 07:51 PM
I bought one sporterised & rechambered to 300 Savage for $50 back on April 15. It still has the 7.7 bore, i've been using 180 gr bullets for the 7.7/.303 in it, shoots great. I plan to use it on deer this fall.

September 6, 2007, 07:56 PM
Currently I am not but wouldn't mind changing that. Sporters/bubbas don't bother me either.

September 6, 2007, 08:01 PM
I see 7.7 for sale all over. I have a Type 44 that shoots 6.5 and there is some choice on that round as well. My 44 Carbine is the last variant- floated barrel, so it shoots X ring on an NRA 100 yard target at 100 yards. Great little gun. I shot a doe with it last year.

I've got a wrecked 44 sporterized with a bad barrel (bulges case heads) thats sitting in the gun case now.

I hear its an easy reload. Plan to shoot another deer this year with it.

Navy joe
September 6, 2007, 08:04 PM
I shoot one, albeit in 6.5jap. Once you are in the market supplies are not too hard to find, I bought Norma at anywhere from 20-40 a box until I had enough brass. Places like Graf's do runs of odd calibers for new brass mfg. I have used them for 7.5 swiss and they are excellent. $200 is a little pricey, mine was a bubba attack too, I bought it because no one, me included knew what it was. It has become a fun project rifle, glad I bought it.

September 6, 2007, 08:12 PM
Little past that now...
-Right, I do have shoes but I'm not allowed to wear them inside the house :neener:

the stuff I use is Miwall Reloads, which can be found for about $18 for a box of 20 at SoCal gunshows, recently price has been going up, but I'll clear all the stock they got when I'm there.

No shame in saving a bubbah! here's my beater which was lifted for 150 and came with a bayonet about a month ago.

September 7, 2007, 01:37 AM
I love the outfit. That's pretty cool, though I wouldn't wear it around Newport Beach.

My old Hornaday reloading manual states that many handloaders form their own 7.7 Arisaka cases from 30-06 brass. It may be something to look into for an occasional hunting gun.

September 7, 2007, 01:44 AM
Prvi Partizan has also been making brass, and bullets (any standard bullet of that diameter is fine), available through grafs. Prices seemed reasonable. Also Grafs has Hornady ammo for lots less than Norma. $21.99 150gr Hornady vs 34.99 174gr Norma per box. Both are SP loads. The Prvi brass is about $0.39 a round, primed, or $0.35 if you buy in 1k lots. That's reasonable, once you figure a $0.14 bullet and $0.23 powder, that comes to $0.76 per round, then the next round is $0.39 or so, since your brass is now free. If you can use each case 10 times, that's under 50 cents a pop. Not bad at all. Unprimed brass is 2 cents cheaper per cartridge, if you want to use your own pet primers for the initial load. The Prvi Partizan bullets are around 13-15 cents a pop for 150gr SP. You could probably even load some 110gr or 123 gr bullets for 7.62x39, if you wanted to go for cheap plinking/gallery loads.

September 7, 2007, 01:50 AM
I just bought 60 rounds of 7.7 ammo from Grafs for my Arisakas. Have not tried it yet. Was previously using .30-06 cases trimmed and reformed. Loaded modestly and worked ok. Just didn't feel like making any Arisaka ammo so I bought some.

September 7, 2007, 02:27 AM
Just wish they made a lee loader for the 7.7 Arisaka. Don't want to shell out for a press & dies.

Might even get the wife to shoot it, though I doubt it, historical Yamato weapon or not.

September 7, 2007, 05:04 AM
I love the outfit. That's pretty cool, though I wouldn't wear it around Newport Beach.
Too many northern Asians here that grew up hearing about Japanese atrocities... I've already been given the stern talkin' to a handful of times.

-There are two great things about the arisaka. One is the fact that the 7.7mm is built around the .303Brit round, so reload data is pretty similar. Second is that the manufacturers were pressed into rushed mass production so they worked all the rifles around just the cartridge dimensions. Creating a a robust neglectful action, they didn't invest much into headspacing! However, design makes it the second beefiest bolt action reciever in WW2, second to it's father, the Type 38. If you overload the round, so long as the rifle passes basic checks(no existing damage, fractures, and the like), the cartridge is not obscenely overloaded or have the incorrect bullet diameter, you'll stay in relatively good shape.

Not to say you shouldn't take precautionary steps before playing with your rifle. ALWAYS TAKE PRECAUTIONARY STEPS BEFORE USING A MILSURP RIFLE

Here is my reenacting arisaka. I picked this up in an estate sale for $150 and it came with a 85-90% condition bayonet and scabbard, all matching parts, matching juki kogyo arsenal mark bayonet... same series block serial 19XX however, not matching bayonet (yes, only 4 digit serial!)
wood exhibits no monopod marks, but it does have the slots for aircraft sight and evidence of a former dust cover... all where lost when bubbah decided to sporterize it. (look at the bolt handle) :banghead:

Course, you don't notice any of that with a dust cover on :p

September 7, 2007, 02:11 PM
Nice gear, Spiggy! Is that all original, or repros? The original stuff isn't exactly flooding the market...

September 7, 2007, 02:51 PM
Original stuff? maybe the shirt and jacket (which has a bullet hole or two in it)

Repro stuff? The haversack and hat... which were lifted from the set of "Windtalkers"

Everything Else
Name badge, made by myself

I made the leggings out of a wool blanket and dyed green ribbon.

The pants are actually standard Dickies cargo pants with the pockets ripped out (compare left and right sides). I also had to modify the pantlegs to have button and cords.

Really, everything I have was made to look like japanese gear(exception to the real stuff I do have). Problem with original stuff is that they almost never fit massive american bodies... I guess the japanese were really tiny in WW2. I'm talking size 7&1/2-8 being their average shoe size. I couldn't find any repros over size 9... I had to order customized Australian Roughout boots to find the nearest match... it was that or civil war boots, which feature hobnails. Also I ordered those fun cameltoe tabi boots and dipped them in rubber grip to look like rubberized canvas boots that were issued in the tropics.

Helmet is a repro and the stuff inside was modified to fit my head... the hat was actually cut and spliced (you cant tell until you look up close) and that now fits me.

September 7, 2007, 03:07 PM
They have bullets at bass pro (.310 or .311 ??), not hard to find. Someone said they were pulling 7.62x54r surplus bullets (or was it .303?) to make cheap plinking ammo. Use 8mm brass and you shouldn't have to trim it like you would with 30-06 brass. Just be sure to mark the brass so you don't start interchanging it.

September 7, 2007, 03:40 PM
Someone said they were pulling 7.62x54r surplus bullets (or was it .303?) to make cheap plinking ammo. 7.7, .303 and 7.62x54R will all interchange the same .311 bullets. 7.62x39 bullets will work too, but they are light (122-125gr.).

September 7, 2007, 03:53 PM
I have a sporterized arisaka myself. Mine was converted to the 6.5x57mm and also has an aftermarket stock on it. But Mine will shoot 2" groups at 100 yards with the old Lyman #57 peep on it. The bedding job is not the best but it shoots good. and is light and short. Living in VA it would make a great little deer rifle but where I might hunt is Front stuffer shotgun only.

have you tried ? They might have some.

The rifle is as strong as an Ox and should shoot well. If the mum is ground off then the rifle was a surrender rifle. If it has a mum it was a capture rifle and should not be touched or changed in any way.

September 7, 2007, 04:31 PM
Funny story about the Jap. rifles. A lot of soldiers brought them back and couldn't get any ammo. One guy had a 6.5 and was shooting a much larger caliber thru it. He took it to a gunsmith complaining about the terrible kick of the gun. The gunsmith asked him what kind of ammo he was using and told him .30-06 (I forget the exact round). Anyway, the bullet was too large, so by the time the bullet exicted the bbl. it was probably twice as long.

As it turns out even the last ditch rifles are strong - really strong. Too bad we didn't ask them what kind of steel they were using and how they were heat treating it.

September 7, 2007, 05:07 PM
I bet the bolt would close on a 30-06 round :rolleyes: (6.5 is 2.93" long, 30-06 is 3.34" long)

He must have just shoved the bolt closed really hard to get the bullet to compress by 0.41" :rolleyes:

September 7, 2007, 05:24 PM
it's been documented by the NRA, if I can pull up the article, I'll share it

September 7, 2007, 05:31 PM
Well, I can believe it, but I'm still skeptical that this isn't just internet myth. How in the world would that work? Really loose head space? Or was the chamber really eroded... I mean, try to cram a 30-06 into a 308 rifle That about the same without the bore issues.

September 7, 2007, 05:44 PM
I would imagine the chamber was reamed out enough to accomidate 30-06... not to mention the arisaka's extremely loose tolerances came to play, he just got real lucky

September 7, 2007, 06:32 PM
I have a sporterized Arisaka chambered in 22-250 that is a great shooter. the ammo does look kind of lost in the action but it functions well.

September 7, 2007, 06:47 PM
Moi. I have two rebarreled Arisaka 38-rifles; .308 WinT and 9,3x57 Mauser. Scope mount in .308 is Redfield "Remington 742"-modell.

September 8, 2007, 11:45 PM
I reload 7.7 Arisaka with Remington brand .311 180gr bullets I buy from MidwayUSA in a bulk pack of 500. They are cheaper than pulling apart loaded ammo for bullets (although that is a good strategy for saving bullets from ammo that is corroded, has hangfires, or when you absolutely have no other options).

I have heard that Graf's has cheap brass in this caliber, but I always cut 30-06 brass to length and resized in a 7.7 die. 8x57 is so close dimensionally that it does not need to be trimmed before resizing. I stick with 30-06 to keep consistent head stamps and because 8x57 is so damn close that there is tremendous room for error if you ever lost track of what you did with the brass. 30-06 headstamped brass that is 57.5 long is instantly recognizeable for what it is. I also use permanent marker to stain the case heads for visual ID. My advice is to be very careful if you make a decision to go this route.

Lots of folks will mention that 7.7 has a different head size than 30-06. I have reference books that show them .001 apart, but I have also ran a mic over actual Japanese military ammo and it reads .473" every time. Chambers in these rifles are often oversized and case heads will stretch. This can be dangerous if you are using tired old '06 brass rather then new high quality Norma brass. That is the best reason not to use trimmed and sized 30-06 brass to form 7.7 Arisaka.

I like to load moderate to light loads with 4895 powder for a pleasant shooting experience. Start with a minimum load from the powder manufacturer's data and see how your accuracy runs. Why beat yourself up?

You can also set back the barrel to shorten the chamber to .308 Win length. I hate screwing with historical rifles in this manner. Folks used to ream the chambers out to 30-06, which is damgerous due to the thin chamber walls at the new cartridge shoulder and neck location due to the quick taper point of the barrel profile. Also difficult to ream due to the chrome chamber and bore. I have one reamed to 30-06 way back when by God knows who, and I shoot it, but it makes me nervous. The US government did this in the Korean war so it must be reasonably not-too-unsafe.

I think the Type 99 Arisaka is a great shooting rifle and the rear peep/ghost ring sight is an excellent feature.

September 9, 2007, 02:26 AM
Spiggy, some reason the name tag is in katakana instead of hiragana or kanji? I know sometimes modern Japanese use katakana for sounding out names on official documents, but didn't realize that was common during WWII for soldiers' nametags.

Like I said, brass and bullets can be had at Grafs for reasonable prices. No need to mess around with fireforming and weird headstamps. Hell, even with full powder loads and premium bullets, it's no more expensive than factory 30-06. Then you get to re-use the brass. Silly to fireform brass for it unless you already have tons of it lying around that you won't use for an actual 30-06 or 8mm.

Now let's all email Lee Precision and get them to make a run of 7.7 arisaka lee loaders.

September 9, 2007, 04:20 AM
oh, it's in katakana because I havent learned how to write in kanji yet

It says "Subigii"

September 9, 2007, 01:31 PM
If you put a little circle, rather than the ", after the 'hi' then it will say "Supigii".

September 9, 2007, 01:36 PM
The rifle that was firing the 30-06 cartridge through a 6.5mm bore had been rechambered in 30-06. Here's an article that references it:

September 9, 2007, 03:02 PM
it's phoneticly correct, a hard "P" sound isn't so mellifluous- plus mixing Rs and Ls and Bs and Ps and Bs and Vs is very common in japanese

September 9, 2007, 03:31 PM
Wrong ammo in a Arisaka story.

It's the late 1960's and highschool buddy has me over and is showing me the guns in the bedroom he shared with his brother, then away at college.

The Sharps Carbine was a wonder, as was a beautiful Marlin 25-35 leveraction with buck horn sights, marble like peep rear mounted on the tang, and a external adjustment slide scope of about 3/4 inch diameter in a side mount (any of the sight systems could be easily used) a nice looking Winchester 94 in .32 Special, and finally a nice looking Type 99 with AA sights and Monopod. Oh yes and a Marlin Model60 and Cortuna Mauser 98 in the closet.

We talked about the guns and when we got to the Type 99 I was informed that it had not been fired since WWII except for two years earlier and that accuracy was so poor and that it seemed to leak gas so much and it so mangled brass that they had stopped shooting after less than a half a box. This was a nice rifle and in good shape The Mum did have some file marks through it but was not totaly removed and the bore and chamber looked very nice. WHen I told my friend I found his report hard to believe he grunted and searched in the back of his desk drawer and pulled out three mangled cartidge cases. All had experienced blow outs at the shoulder and one had a long split down the side. He then proudly showed me the half box of "Jap Ammo. " I am not sure how they managed to get 6.5 Jap to feed and fire in a 7.7x57 Arisaka. I guess brute force and ignorence can accomplish great things with a bolt action. Went boom. Chamber was not sealed well, likely because of the blow outs up front floated the case . Bullet bounced its way down the 1.2mm wider barrel. Not accurate? You think?

-Bob Hollingsworth

September 9, 2007, 03:33 PM
it's phoneticly correct, a hard "P" sound isn't so mellifluous- plus mixing Rs and Ls and Bs and Ps and Bs and Vs is very common in japanese

I beg to differ. B and P are distinct sounds in the Japanese language. The V sound does not exist, and neither does the L sound.

Also, you could find kanji that have the same pronunciation as those katakana, but it would make no sense if you strung them together as a word. Katakana is probably the best way to write "supigii". I should have asked you why you didn't use a real Japanese name in hiragana/katakana (yours or a stage name).

In any case, that's a nice rifle, a nice costume, and you can feed that rifle cheap, quality ammo if you get some dies and components from grafs. A single stage press would be fine, I'm sure. If you don't mind using a gallery load (13 grains of Red Dot, or similar), you can shoot that thing even cheaper (cheaper than factory handgun ammo).

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