Mosin Nagant Ammo


Gadzooks Mike
April 9, 2010, 03:38 PM
Looking for some good, helpful input to this little puzzle.

I bought some Russian ammo for a Mosin Nagant. It was made in Russia in 1960 and it kicks like a mule. Last night I disassembled three rounds and came up with the following: 49 grains average of some kind of extruded powder. Bullets weighed an average of 147.5 grains.

Has anyone chronographed any of these rounds?

I'd like to figure out the closest modern smokeless powder so I can figure out a reduced load using the powder that comes in these things. In other words, pull bullet, remove 25% (or whatever) of the powder, reseat bullet, shoot.

But removing too much powder isn't good either, so I'd like to figure out what's safe, and the best way of doing that is to figure out the closest modern powder. Since I have the weight of the bullet and the weight of the powder, if I had a speed to go with it, I believe I could figure this out. Anyone care to lend a hand?

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April 9, 2010, 04:05 PM
What you are proposing sounds too much like Russian Roulette with a Russian Mosin Nagant. If you want a reduced load, reload a reduced load. Don't try to turn old milsurp rounds into something there weren't meant to be.

And what you are proposing will in no way give you accurate enough data to know what powder it's closest to. It may only give you an idea of what particular range of burn rate the powder is in. You have no way of knowing what this particular powder will do when reducing it, even if someone tells you "it seems to be similar enough to IMR 4895" or what have you. Not all powders play nice when reduced.

April 9, 2010, 04:11 PM
Please do not experiment with surplus powder like this. Since it's an unknown powder that is over 50 years old, who knows what it is or how it reacts to downloading. Hornady's manual has loads for 7.62x54r with approximate velocities. Is it feasible to put a slip-on recoil pad on the stock instead of trying to adjust the ammo?

April 9, 2010, 04:12 PM

C'mon, Man. You should know better than this. Get yourself some new components and reload some reduced loads yourself. Don't mess with things you cannot verify 100%. This is a no-no when it comes to things handloading related.


April 9, 2010, 07:32 PM
I've done exactly that to 40 rounds of Albanian surplus made in 1986. Everyone knows 10% is the number thrown around when reducing a maximum load to a starting load. I checked several charges from the surplus and came close to 49gr average that Gadzooks Mike got. I decided to use a charge of 45.5gr of the surplus powder, after partially resizing the neck and used a lee crimping tool for the original bullet.
I've not chronoed it, as I shot just 2 for effect. Did not feel like a big reduction. I'll eventually chrono and target both, to see what the difference actually amounts to.

We're talking out of a M44.


April 9, 2010, 07:43 PM
I still would not take a chance guessing on a powder charge. I would just toss the old powder and reload them using a recent powder. I kind of like 48 grains of IMR 4895 with a bullet weight of 148 grains.

April 9, 2010, 07:46 PM
Gadzooks Mike

What are the markings on the casehead and what color is the bullet tip ?

Gadzooks Mike
April 9, 2010, 09:22 PM
Casehead markings are 60 (top) and 84 (bottom). No color code on the tip - just copper colored FMJ. And I think I misstated the year - 60 is the arsenal, in this case somewhere in Russia, and 84 is the year, right?

Gadzooks Mike
April 9, 2010, 10:03 PM
Just found another thread on this, if anyone is interested.

April 10, 2010, 12:09 PM
Yes it is,a was curious about the color code.Years ago I bought some black tip for almost nothing and didn't know what they were till I shot a steel plate at 200.

Gadzooks Mike
April 11, 2010, 09:13 AM
For those interested in this, here's some further info from Ed "The Load" Harris. If you're not interested, please don't read it.

In any case, thanks to all those who have warned me about the dangers of guessing. I hadn't planned to guess, which is why I was asking for chrono measurements. More data points are needed to figure this out. But I appreciate the warnings anyway.

Since nobody has chronographed this stuff yet, after mine arrives, I'll do some further testing and post the results.

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