reloading the 7.62x39 ?


December 21, 2012, 11:53 PM
It's been awhile since I reloaded for this cartridge, and now I think it's time to start again :mad: The days of cheap easy to find ammo may be coming to a close.
I have RCBS dies with .308 and .311 expanders, I will be loading for a SKS.
I have some Hornady 123gr SP .310" I have loaded these with IMR-4198 with good results, but my attempts to find more of this powder have been fruitless. I do have Accurate 5744 and Bl-C2 not sure if either of those would be a good choice :confused:
I noticed Wholesale Sports had Accurate 1680 for $28 :what: I think I'll hold out for a bit. Any other good powder options, how about H-322 ?
I am also looking for some cheap bullet options, Extreme has plated 123gr FP .312", I would rather try a 150gr plated but I don't know if anyone makes it ?
Would cast lead be a option or would this fowl the gas port ?
I would like to here your thoughts and experiences on this.

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chris in va
December 22, 2012, 05:19 AM
If you have a reloading manual such as Lyman, it will recommend powders to use.

I reload x39 for my CZ carbine and use 4198, 4227 or 2230. My manual shows you can use 335 with a 130gr JSP.

Don't use cast in your SKS. I tried it with my AK, seized up the gas port something fierce. My piston actually got welded into a ring of lead.

Believe it or not you can use readily available 308 bullets. Just find something between 120 and 145gr.

One more thing, my SKS refused to feed anything with a flat point. Wolf JHP just stopped right at the chamber face.

December 22, 2012, 06:59 AM
I use the X-Treme plated in my SKS with great results. IMHO it depends on ones barrel and how worn out it is as to what is accurate in it. Add to that position of the bullet in the neck and most autoloaders will feed a large variety of bullets well. As stated the .308 bullets will shoot reasonably well in most firearms that are chambered for 7.62X39. I have taken the time to previously work up loads with the X-Treme and several .308 bullets (I like 30 carbine design bullets) as well as different propellants in case the need arises for accurate ammo. That said I have several spam cans set aside to plink with that were purchased at a fraction of the current price. For now I will continue to cast and reload handgun calibers and shoot up the 3 gazilion rounds of .22 that I have put away for such times.

December 22, 2012, 08:36 AM
I use H322 for the heavy 180gr bullets but it's too slow for the lighter ones. H4198 is still my choice for 125gr and 150gr......

December 22, 2012, 08:52 AM
I use H322 for all weights with good results. I make compressed loads when using some of the heavier/longer bullets. H4895 also works well for me.

December 22, 2012, 10:25 PM
Ok I screwed up, the the powder I used in the past for 7.62x39 was IMR 4198.
Well any way I did find some H-4198 today :) which should work well with the Hornady 123gr SP that I have.

So FROGO, Have you tried Extreme's 123gr .312" dia plated ? Is there a speed limit ? and will H-4198 work well with this bullet ?


January 9, 2013, 12:54 AM
I use AA-1680 and Speer's 125 grain TNT bullet. The bullet is .308" diameter and shoots well in my Ruger Mini-Thirty. The bore on my rifle measures out to .310", but the Speers still shoot well.:)

January 9, 2013, 11:10 AM
I have loaded the X-Treme bullets for 7.62x39 im using a MAK90 the most important thing is seating depth for reliable feeding. I had quite a few jam up on the feed ramp cause I was seating them too deep. I now am seating them around 2.1000. Make sure you have good neck tension also. I use a Lee Factory crimp die to just kiss the case. X-Treme recommends keeping the speed below 1900fps. I've not seen any real problem with the load I worked up. It cycles great and is pretty accurate. Still flings the brass 4 bays over.. hehe

My load is
X-Treme Plated 123gr FP
AA2200 26gr.
COAL 2.1000

January 9, 2013, 05:16 PM
I have played with 7.62x39 only a bit. I used .310 soft points, Remington, I think. I tried BlC-2, H335, and H322. H322 gave me the best results. They all took a crunchy case-full to perform.

January 9, 2013, 08:33 PM
Well what I tried were H322 and IMR4198. I could not find the H322 data just now.

IMR 4198----20.2 grains
X-Treme 123 grain Heavy Plated bullet
2.076 OAL for reliable feeding

Worked OK in my Mini 30, SKS, 3 AKs.:)

January 9, 2013, 08:48 PM
I have loaded the caliber for a little while, and for jacketed, the Hornady 123gr Spire Point works well in both my SA vz-58 and the CZ 527M bolt action carbine.

Cast bullets work just fine in the bolt action, but left leading in the gas piston in the vz-58. It worked, but wouldn't work forever without major cleaning.
I found one bullet that really rocks the carbine - the Berry's 125 grain plated, does great work out of the 527M.
I use H4895 and AA 1680, in case anyone wanted to know. :)

January 9, 2013, 10:09 PM
I loaded 5 each 23.0, 23.5 and 24.0gr of H4198 with WLRP behind Hornady's 123gr FMJ at COL of 2.190". The accuracy was very good from these loads, I will try 24.5 and 25.0gr next.
I did try 21.6gr of Accurate 5744 loaded like above and they shot well, but a bit mild the cases fell about 5 feet away.
Thanks far all the replies :)

armoredman, how do you like your CZ 527 7.62x39 ? How is accuracy ?

January 13, 2013, 12:56 PM
It works for me. :)

January 13, 2013, 06:11 PM
One more thing, my SKS refused to feed anything with a flat point. Wolf JHP just stopped right at the chamber face.

This is common in SKS's and Klashnikovs both.

I have some AK's which will feed JHP. But I have a pair of Norinco NHM91's which won't feed ANYTHING except FMJ, and I have a Yugo M76 (basically a big 8mm AK) which will set back bullets sporadically and severely even with the tiniest of hollowpoints (e.g. sierra matchkings).

FMJ is the way to go.

If you DO use HP bullets, and seem to feed OK, you need to test some dummy rounds and carefully measure the before & after to determine if bullets are getting set back on chambering.

Really, you should do this on ANY semi auto with ANY projectile, for safety's sake; but especially with guns of Russian design. :)

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