Bubba from Sweden


January 8, 2011, 07:58 AM

I don't know why I couldn't resist buying what appears to be a Swedish M96 yesterday, chambered in 8x57. There isn't really much in the way of markings other than the crowns and a few numbers and what appears to be an import mark. The tag at the store said "Carl Gustav 8x57" but I don't see any evidence to support that. I thought they were all 6.5x55 When it rang up at the register (at Cabela's) it said 6.5x55 but it is definately 8mm. I like the feel of it and the action feels excellent. Now that buyers remorse is setting in, I'm wondering just what I have $200 invested in here. Any help would be appreciated.
thanks - Stan


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January 8, 2011, 08:36 AM
Nice stock, nice checkering, great cartridge. Mount a scope on it. Its sorta like a .32-06. You bought a hunting rifle.

January 8, 2011, 09:12 AM
The bolt looks like it is from a Sweede with that crown, but I thought the Sweedes put a crest on the receiver? You say it is 8mm so maybe someone liked the Sweedish cock on close bolt but wanted a larger caliber?

Aren't there several cartridges based off the 8x57 to get around European laws banning civilians from owning military calibers?

January 8, 2011, 09:29 AM
There are also crowns on the mag follower, mag bottom plate and bottom of the trigger housing. (a little hard to see in the photos). Maybe assembled from a bunch of parts? As long as it shoots good I'm OK with it. I measured the muzzle end of the bore it's .323. Other than trying a cartridge in it how can I be sure it's 8x57? There are no caliber markings on it anywhere.

January 8, 2011, 10:38 AM
Cherry's and Allan's Armory ( http://www.cherrys.com/ and http://www.allans-armory.com/aa.php ) imported a bunch of Swedish rifles over the last decade or so that range from straight milsurp swedes to civilian markmanship versions to sported/purpose manufactured Swedish sporters. That electro pencil at the top is not the import mark is it?

If you can find a Cherry's mark (they are on the bottom of the barrel usually) or an Allan's, you could check with the importer to get any info they may have on file.

January 8, 2011, 12:17 PM
Nice hunter - hope it shoots well? Big enough to handle Elk and Moose :)

January 8, 2011, 01:12 PM
Looks like a typical "sportized" WWII surplus rifle to me. There is a good chance the owner had it re-barreled in the sporterizing. Definitely have the chambering checked before you shoot it.

Odds are it'll shoot more than well enough to be worth $200.

January 8, 2011, 01:21 PM
I hope that rear sight base is soft soldered to the barrel and not inletted.

Yours is a military M96 that was converted to 8mm. Is there any way to tell if the barrel was increased in bore? Could a M98 barrel fit a M96 action? Maybe someone made 8mm barrels that were short chambered and a gunsmith installed a new barrel?

At least ten years old I saw a M96 action that had a 8 mm barrel on it. From all appearances it looked like a factory job, not a service rifle that had been converted, though the stock was very simple.

I would not hot rod the thing, just take it out and shoot it.

Welding Rod
January 8, 2011, 01:38 PM
Hey that is pretty, I like it!

January 8, 2011, 04:35 PM
It was pretty but, I took it back for a refund because the bolt wouldn't close on an 8x57 cartridge. Must be one of those weird 8mm Euro chambers. Oh well...........

January 8, 2011, 04:49 PM
Probably because it's actually chambered for Swedish machine gun ammo, which was 8x63 and a super hot load. They used it in their version of the Browning medium machineguns and also issued rifles chambered for it to their machinegun crews.

January 8, 2011, 06:27 PM
From what I can tell Swedes were not big on 6.5x55 for hunting rifles. I have a 9.3x62 and 8x57 both Husqvarna manufactured. It would appear someone simply duplicated the model using parts they acquired. I would get it out of the wood and see what may be hiding there. I have seen a number of Swedes electro-penned by the owners.

January 8, 2011, 08:46 PM
It was pretty but, I took it back for a refund because the bolt wouldn't close on an 8x57 cartridge.

Chances are you didn't run the 8x57 cartridge through the magazine, as the rounds rim needs to slide into position behind the extractor. You cannot drop a round in the chamber and close the bolt without interference from the extractor.

In my opinion, it was a professionally done conversion as noted by the barrel and and rear sight installation.
It appears very similar to the hunting rifles offered at Allans Armory, previously mentioned. I just don't know about the electro-penciling.
A fine rifle like that needs an owner who appreciates it.


January 8, 2011, 10:35 PM
Somebody that knew what they were doing put that thing together with a lot of TLC. I'll bet it shot pretty accurately, too. It looks like the rifle of a hunter that would know how to use it.

S. Hill
January 9, 2011, 12:41 AM
I think that a large ring Mauser barrel could be turned down to fit into a small ring Mauser action. I bet that NCsmithy can verify if that is true.

It should be a nice hunting rifle. Makes you wonder what range the folding leaf sights were filed in for?

January 9, 2011, 01:06 AM
Is there any reason to believe this is for sure a 8mm rifle?

If it is not stamped on the barrel then I do not know why it could not just as easily be a 6.5x55.

Just because it was marked as an 8x57 at Cabelas means next to nothing as they tend to have non gun knowledgeable monkeys behind their gun counters.

I have a rifle that I bought from a pawn shop that was marked "Mosin-Nagant 7.62R Russian rifle, $135" Funny thing is that it looked a lot like a Lee Enfield No. 4 Mk 1 in 303 caliber and after buying it for a haggled down price of 125 OTD I proceded to fire several dozen rounds of 303 out of it with nary a problem.

Float Pilot
January 9, 2011, 02:21 AM
Probably because it's actually chambered for Swedish machine gun ammo, which was 8x63 and a super hot load.

Brother HorseSoldier:: the Swedes did indeed issue rifles chambered in the super hot 8x63mm machine gun cartridge. The m/40 anti-tank rifle. (note that some 5,000 m/39 rifles, which were really German K98k rifles bought from Germany in 1939, were later rechambered for the 8x63mm)

But those rifles (the m/39s and m/40s) were actually German made M-98 type actions and they were marked with a big 1940 in the top of the forward receiver ring.
Around 1948 or 49 almost all of the Swedish m/40 rifles were sold to Israel. They were then re-barreled to 7.62Nato.

The action in the photos appears to be the much weeker Swedish m/96 small ring action with lots of Mitary parts from the Carl Gustaf factory. The super hot 8x63mm, whioch is about as zippy as a 338 Win Mag, would probably blow up that action.

It could have been a 6.5x55 , a 8x57mm, a 9x57mm, a 9.3x57mm or who knows.
Had the OPs kept it, a quick chamber cast and a posting to the Swedish Sporter Rifles Collecters site http://forums.gunboards.com/forumdisplay.php?50-Swedish-Civilian-amp-Sporting-Firearms
Would have solve the mystery...

CG (Carl Gustaf rifle factory) also had a neat deal back in the 50s and 60 where they had employee rifles. They were simple sporting rifles made from extra military parts and a sporter stock. This rifle looks close to one of those with checkering added to the stock.. The working stiffs back in the factory could buy these pretty cheap from the company store.

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