Bolt "battle rifle"


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Mencius
November 12, 2012, 10:34 AM
I am looking to get a reliable bolt-action rifle in 308 or 30-06. I want reliability first and accuracy next (sort of the AK philosophy I guess). The two guns I am considering at the moment are the Belgian or Brazilian(?) mauser action in 30-06 or an enfield 2A1 in 308. I lean a little toward the 308 at the moment as far as caliber, but I like the simplicity of the mauser action. I don't want to have to re-chamber.

I have considered just getting a hunting rifle out of the paper, but would rather have a military gun I think. The military rifles seem more reliable and hardier and easier to find with iron sights.

I am pretty open to any suggestions, the two above are just my first thoughts on the subject.

And no, I don't shoot 1000 yards...

Any thoughts?

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ScrapMetalSlug
November 12, 2012, 10:44 AM
What is your price range? Maybe something like a M1903A3 Springfield, but they aren't cheap. They make reproductions, but they are fairly expensive too. It is basically a mauser action, and the US govt got sued for copyright infringement of the mauser.

henschman
November 12, 2012, 10:57 AM
An FR-8 meets that role perfectly. 7.62x51, K98 action, adjustable aperture sights, nice and handy with the 17.75" barrel. It even has a threaded muzzle and flash hider. Another benefit of the mil surps over commercial hunting rifles is that they feed from stripper clips.

http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk201/henschman/guns/FR81.jpg
http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk201/henschman/guns/FR82.jpg

D Rat
November 12, 2012, 10:58 AM
Have you looked into the Fin. Model M-39 Mosen Nagant.
You will get boath of the things that you are looking for.
D Rat

Mencius
November 12, 2012, 11:25 AM
I was hoping to stay <$500, but I don't have a great feel for how much I would have to spend to get something that meets my criteria.

The FR-8 looks like a great idea. I will definitely have to look around and see what I can come up with. They look to be pretty inexpensive too. How are they, quality wise?

I don't really want to get anything in the x54R round.

David E
November 12, 2012, 11:31 AM
I don't really want to get anything in the x54R round.

I've recently considered a military bolt rifle, also. Hadn't gotten too far in my deliberations yet, but the Mosin came to mind strictly due to cost of ammo. .308 and 30-06 aren't exactly cheap anymore.

Mencius
November 12, 2012, 11:36 AM
Yeah, the mosin is definitely a thought as far as an inexpensive rifle and inexpensive ammo. I am just too vested in 308 and, to a lesser degree, 30-06. I just don't want to have to pick up another caliber. And, the prevalence of corrosive x54 bothers me. I know, I know, you just have to clean up afterward and there is non-corrosive out there, but I don't want to have to worry about it.

vaupet
November 12, 2012, 11:37 AM
fn build mauser in 308, build as a sniper rifle for the israeli army is just great.

greetz

Peter

303tom
November 12, 2012, 01:55 PM
I am looking to get a reliable bolt-action rifle in 308 or 30-06. I want reliability first and accuracy next (sort of the AK philosophy I guess). The two guns I am considering at the moment are the Belgian or Brazilian(?) mauser action in 30-06 or an enfield 2A1 in 308. I lean a little toward the 308 at the moment as far as caliber, but I like the simplicity of the mauser action. I don't want to have to re-chamber.

I have considered just getting a hunting rifle out of the paper, but would rather have a military gun I think. The military rifles seem more reliable and hardier and easier to find with iron sights.

I am pretty open to any suggestions, the two above are just my first thoughts on the subject.

And no, I don't shoot 1000 yards...

Any thoughts?
You are right, Enfield makes a good build platform................

henschman
November 12, 2012, 01:57 PM
The FR-8 looks like a great idea. I will definitely have to look around and see what I can come up with. They look to be pretty inexpensive too. How are they, quality wise?

A hell of a lot better than an Ishapore 2A (or anything else made in India for that matter). Spanish Mausers are pretty well regarded. They are kind of middle of the road as far as Mausers go. They are no German or Swede, but then again they are no Turk or Yugo either. The FR-8's were converted from M1943 Mausers in the 1960s, after Spain joined NATO, so they tend to be in better shape than most Mausers you see out there. You can definitely get a decent one in your price range. I found mine for $260, but that was pretty lucky. You can find a nice one for $350-400 no problem. Just hit Armslist and Gunbroker.

dak0ta
November 12, 2012, 02:50 PM
No. 4 Enfield and be done with it.

Cal-gun Fan
November 12, 2012, 03:00 PM
I've always wondered-what is the purpose of that thing under the FR-8 barrel? Stabilizer or something? Obviously isn't a gas system, but resembles one of an M14.

TurtlePhish
November 12, 2012, 03:05 PM
I've always wondered-what is the purpose of that thing under the FR-8 barrel? Stabilizer or something? Obviously isn't a gas system, but resembles one of an M14.


Believe it or not, it holds a cleaning kit.

jmr40
November 12, 2012, 03:27 PM
I have considered just getting a hunting rifle out of the paper, but would rather have a military gun I think. The military rifles seem more reliable and hardier and easier to find with iron sights.



Military surplus rifles just aren't my thing. Nothing against them, they just don't appeal to me. If you are considering a hunting rifle I'd look at one of the CRF Rugers or Winchesters. Those two would likely be just as rugged and reliable as any of the military bolt guns,but with some modern features. I don't think it would be possible for under $500 though. A used Ruger might be right at $500, but after adding irons it would put you over budget.

Adding iron sights to a modern gun is not that difficult or expensive. You can very easily end up with very high quality irons that would be better quality than factory or military grade sights for a lot less than a budget scope and mounts.

Not trying to talk you out of one of the military rifles, just pointing out other options, and the route that I would take.

David E
November 12, 2012, 03:52 PM
If buying mon-military, the Ruger "American" rifle is about $365 new at Walmart.

desidog
November 12, 2012, 04:02 PM
I have an FR-8 as well; used to have an FR-7.

Just remember that you should NOT shoot .308win out of a pre-98 Mauser action. The FR's and Spanish Model of 1916 was chambered for 7.62 CETME.

When you see "Spanish Mauser chambered in .308win" it's generally because of the ignorance of the author. Generally speaking, it's a very minor issue that doesn't matter...unless you're shooting .308win 62K PSI loads in a small ring action like the FR-7 or Model of 1916 Spanish Mauser that were chambered for 40K PSI 7.62 CETME ammo. Metallurgy back then wasn't super either...

ETA: you should read up on shooting .308 Enfields in the rain too....

Shadow 7D
November 12, 2012, 04:11 PM
OR, just buy a savage and be done with it.....
for close to the same money you will get a new rifle

it will out shoot you, won't be a crap shoot on condition etc.

jmr40
November 12, 2012, 07:29 PM
The Savage or Ruger American are OK, and accurate rifles for the money but the OP specifically said.

I like the simplicity of the mauser action.

He wants something dead nuts reliable that can take abuse and still work under the harshest conditions. That means traditional CRF Mauser or Mauser style actions with all steel parts found only on the miltary rifles, the Ruger MK-II's, Hawkeye's, various commercial Mausers, and CRF Winchesters.

billymarr
November 12, 2012, 07:49 PM
or a Howa it is robust and easy to work with. A Tika is another good platform as is a CZ.

Ash
November 12, 2012, 08:11 PM
US Rifle Model of 1917. 30-06 with excellent sights.

Unka-Boo
November 12, 2012, 08:12 PM
A hell of a lot better than an Ishapore 2A (or anything else made in India for that matter). Spanish Mausers are pretty well regarded. They are kind of middle of the road as far as Mausers go. They are no German or Swede, but then again they are no Turk or Yugo either. The FR-8's were converted from M1943 Mausers in the 1960s, after Spain joined NATO, so they tend to be in better shape than most Mausers you see out there. You can definitely get a decent one in your price range. I found mine for $260, but that was pretty lucky. You can find a nice one for $350-400 no problem. Just hit Armslist and Gunbroker.


Having owned both, here's my take:

2A1 :
Any Nato 7.62 clips fit, 12 round mag ( IIRC ).
Dedicated short action specifically built for the 7.62x51, butter smooth.
Mine was very accurate.
Downside being length and weight.

FR8:
Only FR8 specific clips will fit, 5 round mag.
Converted 8mm action with spacer in front of magazine.
Shorter, lighter package, but you pay for that with more felt recoil
Better sights than the Enfield

I'm left handed...( :o )...between the two, the Enfield was MUCH easier for me to manipulate, that said, the FR8 wins on "cool" factor.

http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y121/Unka-Boo/gunz/IMG_6107.jpg

I used the Enfield to take 1st place in the "manually operated" class at our local Practical Rifle "Classic Battle Rifle" match a couple of years ago:


http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y121/Unka-Boo/gunz/IMG_5370Medium.jpg


I don't think you can go wrong with either, but as someone above suggested...a Savage 110 or 10FP might be a better long term option...sky's the limit with option for optics, stocks, mags, ect....

Ignition Override
November 12, 2012, 08:54 PM
This is just to clarify that the Spanish FR8 has the much stronger large-ring 8mm Mauser action, compared to the much older, weaker, small-ring 7mm action of the FR7. Many people on milsurp forums appear to assume that the guns are about the same, based on the appearance and designations.
Not at all.

Many also assume that the Spanish Nato ammo was designed for the FR8. This was not the situation.
It was designed to be weaker than standard Nato 7.62x51, and to be used in the old Spanish 7mm Mausers converted to 7.62 Nato-some of which became the FR7.

As for sights, the typical Enfield #4/Mk.1, which is very common in the US has aperture sights, although three of the four settings on the FR8 (200/300/400) are also apertures.
My FR8s are sort of like having "Jungle Carbines" with more muzzle velocity, using ammo which is much more available and can use a much wider selection of bullets.

zoom6zoom
November 12, 2012, 09:01 PM
I've always wondered-what is the purpose of that thing under the FR-8 barrel? Stabilizer or something? Obviously isn't a gas system, but resembles one of an M14.
They basically took the front end of a CETME and flipped it upside down. On the CETME that would be the gas tube. The two rifles were produced concurrently.

chris in va
November 12, 2012, 09:09 PM
Perhaps one of those Ruger Scout rifles. Bolt action 308 with optic rail and short barrel.

Swing
November 12, 2012, 09:31 PM
Within those given parameters, a Smelly (SMLE) would really fit the bill.

paintballdude902
November 12, 2012, 09:36 PM
get an enfield. ive sold several mausers and mosins... never let go of an enfield.

back to the FR-8 pretty sure its used to hold thecleaning kit. never got a real answer but on mine it was just big enough to hold one .308 IIRC the front of it is part of the bayonet hookup

Unka-Boo
November 12, 2012, 09:45 PM
get an enfield. ive sold several mausers and mosins... never let go of an enfield.

back to the FR-8 pretty sure its used to hold thecleaning kit. never got a real answer but on mine it was just big enough to hold one .308 IIRC the front of it is part of the bayonet hookup

They do hold the cleaning kit. If I remember right, a CETME kit will fit if you can't find a correct FR8 kit.

fatcat4620
November 12, 2012, 09:53 PM
Hard to beat an enfield... You could go <deleted> crazy and ream out a .303 enfield to 7.62x54r. With 54r going for $150/880 rounds its cheap.

BBDartCA
November 12, 2012, 10:41 PM
I think the FR8 is a very good choice.

A great choice in terms of great accuracy, sights and strength is the Danish Madsen 47. The latest developed bolt military rifle incorporating some of the best features from the at that time established weapons.

http://www.geocities.com/hiker1250/m47.html

http://www.geocities.com/hiker1250/m47.jpg

Robert101
November 12, 2012, 11:10 PM
BBDart, that FR8 is awesome. My only comment is to the initial post that requested a bolt action battle rifle. I was a bit confused. I guess in retro the FR8 fits that admirably. But in today's world a battle rifle is semi-auto or better true "select fire" for military.

Edarnold
November 13, 2012, 03:45 AM
Sporting bolt actions are designed to have desirable features such as fast lock time, convenient safeties, stiff receivers with minimum cuts for magazine and ejection, and ease of manufacture. Every one of these features is bought at the expense of reliability compared with the Mauser 1898 design.

If reliability under adverse conditions is necessary, an action tested in WW1 trenches, African desert sands, and Russian winters is going to beat a sporting action with a brazed-on bolt handle or a complex trigger mechanism hands down. The FR8 or a gun built up on a military-spec M98 action will fit the OP's needs better than any alternative type.

IMHO

CountGlockulla
November 13, 2012, 07:21 AM
Ruger GSR for a more modern twist?

http://i687.photobucket.com/albums/vv239/BlayGlock/Scout.jpg

Strong bolt action, magazine fed, ability to use scopes, iron sights, red dot, ect.
Short, fairly light weight, handy for sure. Mine is accurate enough and fun to shoot.

Mencius
November 13, 2012, 07:26 AM
He wants something dead nuts reliable that can take abuse and still work under the harshest conditions.

Yeah, this is the idea. Man, you guys are coming up with some great ideas. Makes me think I need 4 or 5 of these, just in case ya see...

I do like the Ruger Scout too, they are just too expensive. I think I could get one of the others and half a case of ammo for the same price.

One more quick question about 308 win and modern 30-06 in these rifles. I know (think?) the FR8 was made with a stronger action, will it handle the modern loads? How about the 2A1? Enfields? Hmm...

Unka-Boo
November 13, 2012, 08:47 AM
The 2A1 was designed ground up as a 7.62x51 gun using "modern" steel....that said, we all know the debate over 7.62 vs .308 interchangeability....

If in doubt, Remington's "reduced recoil" .308 load I beleive maches 7.62 specs.

I don't think you'd go wrong with either, just a matter of preference.

303tom
November 13, 2012, 08:58 AM
The 2A1 was designed ground up as a 7.62x51 gun using "modern" steel....that said, we all know the debate over 7.62 vs .308 interchangeability....

If in doubt, Remington's "reduced recoil" .308 load I beleive maches 7.62 specs.

I don't think you'd go wrong with either, just a matter of preference.
I shoot .308 in mine all the time...............

BBDartCA
November 13, 2012, 05:24 PM
If the OP has a desire to hunt with a real battle rifle and the budget is not huge, I'd look for an Israeli Mauser in 308 / 7.62 NATO (preferably one that came over straight from Israel via Armspcorp, not the ones that came out of South America). They used to go for a couple hundred bucks. Very accurate, stone ax reliable and the ammo is cheap to come by. A 1903A3 Springfield (peep sights) is a good choice but pricing is long beyond cheap nowadays. Enfields are still cheap but decent hunting ammo is not easy to come by when you ... Cabellas carries the PPU 145g soft points usually. Enfields can be a crap shoot as they seem to have a lot of variation in barrel diameter.

If the OP wants something that's just reliable with iron sights, there are many, many excellent low cost options out there.

rcmodel
November 13, 2012, 05:39 PM
I've always wondered-what is the purpose of that thing under the FR-8 barrel? Stabilizer or something? Obviously isn't a gas system, but resembles one of an M14.

Believe it or not, it holds a cleaning kit. It also allowed the FR-8 to mount the same bayonet used on the CEMTE assult rifle they also used at the same time.

http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcThR4lGT6hw2jUGPDE9JD-dwDgV4bKuZdI1McegNeb_gxiQ1twTlw

rc

Ash
November 13, 2012, 09:47 PM
The 1917 Enfield in 30-06 was carried by more US troops than the 1903. It almost became the standard rifle, replacing the 1903 following the war. They run between $300 and $450 for a decent version, less for sporters, more for pristine collectors rifles. They have excellent sights and have among the tougher actions available.

FMF Doc
November 13, 2012, 09:59 PM
I am with the Enfield crowd. The SMLE was, in my opinion, the best bolt-action battle rifle ever made, and the 303 is pretty much the same as a 308 ballistically. If you can find one, get the reloading supplies and you'll be set!

RSR
November 13, 2012, 10:10 PM
I've hit 2L bottles at 200-250 yards with our Enfield. Great sights compared to some battle rifles, but it is one bulky S.O.B.:cuss: It has the 06 barrel, and the .303 remains in the dungeon of the basement. I'm assuming the .303 is just as heavy. But...oh yeah, reliability was first on the list. No issues there. If the round doesn't fit, force 'er in and crank that bolt down. Always goes bang!

JDBoardman
November 13, 2012, 10:47 PM
There are several drawbacks to the 1917 - unlike the Mauser and Springfield actions, the 1917 is a "cock on closing" which is not as smooth an action. It also has a slower lock time than the others, and the trigger pull is horrible. To counter the negatives, it is hell for stout, amazingly accurate, and the dogleg magazine holds 6 rounds - one more than the others. Between the wars, Remington marketed the 1917 action, minus the sight ears, as the Model 37. But it IS butt ugly.

Ash
November 14, 2012, 06:05 AM
Cock on closing has advantages, too. Primary extraction is easier on such an action, for instance. The SMLE uses it, as does the vaunted Swedish Mauser. In fact, many of Mauser's designs were cock-on-closing. Sure, the 98 was cock-on-open and that was his final design, but the debate as to which is a better system has never been settled on this forum in the decade I have been here.

Pilot
November 14, 2012, 06:10 AM
The Enfield SMLE is a great choice as is a Yugo M48 Mauser.

vba
November 14, 2012, 07:45 AM
This thread reminds me of why I bought my 1903A3 Smith Corona. I wanted a tough bolt action battle rifle with peep sights. My SC has an extremely accurate Remington 2 groove barrel. With my old eyes I've shot 1.5 inch groups at 100 yards.

A rifle without iron sights is useless to me.

Elkins45
November 14, 2012, 07:51 AM
You don't have to go milsurp to get a true Mauser action. I bought a NIB Zastava Z98 for $311 out the door a couple of years ago. It's a commercial 98 Mauser action in a synthetic stock. It is everything the military guns are except this one doesn't have irons.

Search the used market for Zastava, Charles Daly, Remington 798 or Interarms Mark X guns. All are the same rifle, just produced at different times and imported under different names, and all are true controlled feed Mauser actions.

Mencius
November 14, 2012, 08:41 AM
I have been making a list of all of the suggestions here that look like they would fit the bill for further research and this is really a good list. I really appreciate all of the suggestions. I have to admit, I don't think any of the rifles suggested wouldn't work.

Thanks again for all of the replies. Looks like I am going to be canvassing the gun shows now...

mljdeckard
November 14, 2012, 08:47 AM
Something to consider, david e mentioned in post #15.

I have no problem with wanting and shooting milsurps. But they haven't been made for a long time. There have been a lot of modernizations done to bolt rifles since WWII. I don't think it can universally be said that they are better, more accurate, more reliable, or more durable than modern commercial bolt rifles. If you don't want the conveniences and upgrades you get with an autoloader, than I really don't see a lot of advantage of getting a milsurp.

Mencius
November 14, 2012, 09:18 AM
Some of my thoughts on the milsurp route. Just my thoughts and may not be completely true. I understand there are always exceptions to just about every rule.

1) More bang for the buck, so to speak. I think for the same dollars you get more rifle with a milsurp than a factory new rifle.

2) Most modern rifles have to have iron sights added at another cost. Probably not so expensive, but it is another cost.

3) I just think the old milsurps are cool. (Ok, I am not completely rational with this...)

4) I do like synthetic and laminate stocks for this rifle which is making it a little hard to go 100% the milsurp route.

I am definitely considering the American Rifle and the Ruger Gunsite Scout (even thought it is approaching twice what I want to spend on this) and some of the used bolt action hunting rifles out there now.

In my mind, just from observing and this could be out in left-field somewhere, but I just get a sense that things made these days are not made to last like they were at one time. I understand technology has made things easier to produce better, but I get a sense this technology is mainly being made to make things cheaper and faster, not always better. Of course there are many exceptions to this rule. And, I am not entirely convinced if guns are or not, but this is my gut feeling on it.

mljdeckard
November 14, 2012, 09:32 AM
There is nothing wrong with getting them just because you WANT them. It's just that your wants are pretty specific, and it makes it a pretty narrow search.

Ash
November 14, 2012, 05:15 PM
The majority of "modernizations" to bolt action rifles have been in making them cheaper. A round receiver is more modern, cheaper to make, but not better. The only place modern bolt actions are superior are in planned scope mountings and accuracy. Modern bolt guns will be more accurate as a rule. That is not to say older ones are inaccurate. Indeed, many older bolt guns are more accurate than the shooter, and thus any advantage provided by superior modern barrels is not realized.

henschman
November 14, 2012, 05:54 PM
Addressing the issue of the strength of the FR-8... it is a K98 for crying out loud. There isn't a factory .308 load in existence that could blow it up. That action has been chambered for many cartridges that are much, much more powerful than any .308 load out there.

And it does not require "FR-8 specific stripper clips" -- like any K98, it takes 8mm Mauser size stripper clips, which fit .308s just like they were made for them, and if anything are probably more common than 7.62 NATO stripper clips.

Cosmoline
November 14, 2012, 06:37 PM
There are also the Israeli Mausers in 7.62 NATO. They're tough '98 pattern and can shoot .308 Win. But the down side is many have shot-out barrels so a hand inspection is needed. Or a replacement barrel. I've got one that shoots pie plates, haven't decided what to do with it yet.

mickeydim468
November 15, 2012, 02:30 AM
This rifle is a US model of 1917, made in September of 1918. It was badly sporterized when I got it and I went full tilt and really sporterized it the rest of the way. I paid $165 for the rifle at a gun show about 3 years ago, spent $100 on the stock (Richard's Microfit and a lot of time), and paid a smith $150 to shorten the barrel and add the sights. I planed the receiver myself with a 6" table top grinding wheel. "Be very careful!" was the only thing on my mind that day. The overall length is 1/2" longer than my Marlin 60, from butt to muzzle, and LOP is exactly the same as is the overall stock length, butt to for-end tip.

This is what it looked like when I got it:
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/LQ8wqCXG7ErSz32fxpUMNNMTjNZETYmyPJy0liipFm0?feat=directlink

This is what it looks like now:
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/h7_UE8ixrdYxW7PWbJHo_dMTjNZETYmyPJy0liipFm0?feat=directlink

Here is a link to the entire progression:
My 1917 project (https://picasaweb.google.com/109512129658694904908/USModelOf1917Remington?authuser=0&feat=directlink)

I did the final planing of the action after these pics were taken. I can take more pics of it if anyone is interested.

Mike!

Mencius
November 15, 2012, 07:37 AM
Wow, that is a transformation. I don't have nearly the skill to do something like that. Thanks for posting these.

mickeydim468
November 15, 2012, 10:51 AM
This was my third project stock for my rifles. I saved it for last, because I was not exactly sure I could do it either. I did both of my Weatherby Vangards first, that way if I screwed them up, I knew I still had an operational rifle. There was nothing wrong with the stock I took off of them. Also, the Richard's stocks are 99% inletted for the Weatherby and only 96% for the 1917. Believe me, that 3% was lots of extra work, but well worth the time and effort.

I am convinced that anyone can do it. If I can do it, anyone can. Just take your time, don't rush things, and take off a little bit at a time. The internet is your friend on one of these projects. The people here on THR were very helpful as were the people on http://Weatherbynation.com The best part is knowing you put a lot of love into your rifle and now I can never sell it. It will be passed down to my daughter, who will hunt with it too when she gets older.

I didn't show you these pics to brag. I hope no one got that impression. I did it to show you that you can have the rifle you want on a very limited budget. This is my second most accurate rifle in the safe too! Only my Weatherby Vangard in .243 is more accurate. It came that way from the factory. .28" target from the factory and I got .31" with reloads at 100yds.

I hope your rifle search is a good one and that you find what you really want. I will say that the military rifles I have owned have all been fun for different reasons. All of them to date have been bolt action. This 1917 is my favorite of the bunch even with its pot belly (6 rounds) and cock on closing action.

Mike!

SlamFire1
November 15, 2012, 05:00 PM
I am of the opinion that a No 4 or No 5 Jungle Carbine is the best stock box battle bolt rifle out there.

Then Mauser actions.

For highest function reliablity it is best to leave these military actions in their original calibers.

dprice3844444
November 15, 2012, 05:12 PM
best bet is an enfield #4mk2.trigger is part of the receiver.it is the fastest bolt gun ever built.a savage built us property one is built in america,would be my first choice after the #4mk2.although i do have a #4mk1 t (less scope)and a like new savage along ith the golden state #5mk1 carbines.

Mencius
November 16, 2012, 09:44 AM
Yeah, I had kinda thought converting to a different caliber than the original manufacture would make it, maybe only slightly, less reliable and bullet proof.

VVelox
January 6, 2013, 09:57 AM
A hell of a lot better than an Ishapore 2A (or anything else made in India for that matter). Spanish Mausers are pretty well regarded. They are kind of middle of the road as far as Mausers go. They are no German or Swede, but then again they are no Turk or Yugo either. The FR-8's were converted from M1943 Mausers in the 1960s, after Spain joined NATO, so they tend to be in better shape than most Mausers you see out there. You can definitely get a decent one in your price range. I found mine for $260, but that was pretty lucky. You can find a nice one for $350-400 no problem. Just hit Armslist and Gunbroker.
Actually Spain started making them in the 1950s. Mine was made in 1952.

VVelox
January 6, 2013, 10:01 AM
I've always wondered-what is the purpose of that thing under the FR-8 barrel? Stabilizer or something? Obviously isn't a gas system, but resembles one of an M14.
Here is a picture of one of the cleaning kits for one.

http://i.imgur.com/GHP6Th.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/Zb1vxh.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/aIzYMh.jpg

35 Whelen
January 6, 2013, 10:51 AM
Yeah, this is the idea. Man, you guys are coming up with some great ideas. Makes me think I need 4 or 5 of these, just in case ya see...

I do like the Ruger Scout too, they are just too expensive. I think I could get one of the others and half a case of ammo for the same price.

One more quick question about 308 win and modern 30-06 in these rifles. I know (think?) the FR8 was made with a stronger action, will it handle the modern loads? How about the 2A1? Enfields? Hmm...

I second the FR-8. I bought one back in the '90's and modified it just a little;). Everything on it, including the stock, is original except of course for the sights:

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/FR-8/FR8.gif

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/FR-8/FR8-11A.jpg

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/FR-8/FR8-7A.jpg

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/FR-8/FR8-TOP.jpg

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/FR-8/FR8-Bottom.jpg

Even left as-is, it'd probably be fine. I just found it to be a little clunky with the kind of crude sights and the straight bolt handle. I have in years past absolutely wrung this rifle out with hot handloads and the rifle is still in perfect shape. It is now a Scout rifle and I now shoot "normal" handloads through it. That little rifle has literally killed a truck load of deer and hogs and it is hands down my most used rifle.

With regards to action strength the FR-8 and the FR-7 BOTH are chambered in .308/7.62x51 and as such are supposed to be fired with said ammunition. Lots of folks will repeat internet B.S. folklore that's been regurgitated over and over regarding these rifles and their use with .308/7.62x51 ammunition.

A couple of years ago I bought a Spanish 1916 Mauser in .308 as the basis for a Scout rifle for my wife. I pretty much did to it what I did to the FR-8 except I used what I'd learned with the former and did a few things different. It has a little longer barrel and I mounted a much more rugged and practical front sight off and M-1 carbine. I also finished the stock with a linseed oil/turpentine blend.

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Scout%20Rifle%20Project/Stockafter6.jpg

At one time I owned three of the Ishapores in .308 thinking I'd work them over into utility rifles. I like the rifles very well, but the one thing that stopped me was their pencil-thin barrels....at least out towards the muzzle. My experience with really thin barrels is the need to be supported out near the muzzle which means means in the case of a wood stocked rifle, you'll likely experience a driftling point of impact as changin atmospheric conditions cause the stock to bend lightly.

Good luck in your choice.

35W

csa77
January 6, 2013, 11:09 AM
if money is no object there are other 308 Enfields. they are the last of the Enfield series featuring cock on close and rear lugged. they arnt cheap but they all should be very accurate

L42A1 used as a sniper rifle for the British army form I believe the early 70's to around 1990. this one was fielded in Falklands war , probably other conflicts too.

the L39a1 used by military shooting teams-one on gun broker right now actually

and the enfield enforcer , while not used by the military they were almost identical to the L39/L42. used by British police .

I6turbo
January 6, 2013, 11:18 AM
I am looking to get a reliable bolt-action rifle in 308 or 30-06. I want reliability first and accuracy next (sort of the AK philosophy I guess). The two guns I am considering at the moment are the Belgian or Brazilian(?) mauser action in 30-06 or an enfield 2A1 in 308. I lean a little toward the 308 at the moment as far as caliber, but I like the simplicity of the mauser action. I don't want to have to re-chamber.

I have considered just getting a hunting rifle out of the paper, but would rather have a military gun I think. The military rifles seem more reliable and hardier and easier to find with iron sights.

I am pretty open to any suggestions, the two above are just my first thoughts on the subject.

And no, I don't shoot 1000 yards...

Any thoughts?
I have a 7.92x57 military Mauser and really appreciate the history and fundamental workmanship in the gun. I love to take it out of the safe and handle it. But for a more modern true Mauser in .308 (or 30-06 or several other calibers), I really love the CZ 550 (FS model is my preference). It has a similar ultra-strong feel to the military Mauser actions, has a fantastic single set trigger, and is a very satisfying gun to shoot. You can sometimes pick up a perfect used one on GB for a good deal, and there's always the new option.
http://i1255.photobucket.com/albums/hh640/I6T/550rightsideonbag_1.jpg

Jenrick
January 6, 2013, 08:07 PM
I'd vote for an SMLE personally, and if you're not dead set on .308, one in .303 british will do all the .308 can and more. Additionally the tapered shaped of the .303 British, means it will feed and extract unless there is something seriously wrong with the cartridge (coated in mud, etc). The SMLE was designed as a battle rifle, and the action served in that capacity well past the end of the second WW. It is IMO one of the greatest rifle actions available.

-Jenrick

lefteyedom
January 7, 2013, 04:04 AM
The SMLE In a jungle carbine configuration would be my bolt action choose...

But to chum the waters, skip the Bolt action and get a CMP M1. in 30/06...can bet the price for the quality of the weapon

henschman
January 7, 2013, 11:28 AM
If you want a synthetic stock, there are plenty of after-market options for the K98 pattern. I recently bought a Fajen synthetic stock for my FR-8 for about $60. It is the F-54 profile. It requires a little dremeling to fit the barrel profile of the FR-8 (especially like mine with the XS scout mount) but it is a great stock... very stiff, and it allows me to drill wherever I want to add side sling swivels and whatnot without messing up the nice surplus wood stock. Plus the butt stock is hollow, and works as additional storage space in addition to the little cleaning kit compartment under the barrel.

I have the rifle all disassembled right now with the front sight assembly removed (which I had to do in order to install the XS mount), but I will post pics when she is all back together.

Actually Spain started making them in the 1950s. Mine was made in 1952.
The date on the receiver is the date the M1943 rifle was made in it's original (8mm) configuration. They were converted to FR-8 configuration in the 60s.

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