Mosins with factory or reloads.... MUCH better!


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BCRider
May 6, 2013, 12:42 PM
Last weekend I finally got around to shooting some Privi Partizan ammo from my Mosin Naganst. I wish I'd tried this a LOT earlier. I was blown away by how much better the rifle shoots. Both in operation of the action as well as in the tighter groups.

With the milsurp I'd shot previously up to now 100 yard groups were working out to be about 10'ish inches in size with fairly regular flyers out to more than that. In fact the "groups" were more of a cloud like formation than what I'd call a group.... :D

With the PP ammo my buddy and I were able to produce sub 3 inch groups at 100 and, once we found the right elevation change, pretty much 6 inch or slightly tighter groups at 200 yards.

This may not sound all that fantastic to some but I was certainly impressed.

I should also admit that two other factors played a big part in this improvement. First off I was using a peep aperature stuck to my shooting glasses to aid in sharpening up the overall sight picture. The other was to switch from my previous targets that simply did not have good colour contrast over to Birchwood Casey Shoot NC targets stuck to big sheets of white paper. These two things most certainly made it a lot easier to achieve a far better sight picture then previously. But it was still the ammo quality that carried the day.

I've also recently finished collecting the things I need to reload my own ammo for my Mosin. And I'm going to play around with all the little things like corking the barrel and such to fine tune the performance. So hopefully I'll see significant gains over even what I saw this past weekend.

I'm actually pretty stoked up over it all now. The Mosin isn't just an inexpensive bit of history sitting in my safe any more.

For those that care the results are from a '39 Tula round receiver model.

For those that already reload would you mind sharing your recipes? In particular I'd like to move towards a load that is down in power a little from the milsurp and factory loads both to make it a little less abusive to shoot my 91/30 as well as to be able to enjoy the Model 44 carbine without displacing my shoulder socket or producing a notch in my collar bone.... :D

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-Jake-
May 6, 2013, 01:58 PM
Here is my reload for my PU Sniper. These shoot just under 1 MOA out of it.

Lapua Brass
174 gr .311" SMKs
44 gr Varget
CCI 200 LR primers
OAL: 2.950"
Light crimp with Lee factory crimp die
Squared up using Hornady's concentricity tool

7 shot group:
http://i251.photobucket.com/albums/gg314/big74blazer/mosin44grVargetscored_zpscee26a64.jpg

the ones not in the black was me messing around with my AR

WardenWolf
May 6, 2013, 02:15 PM
I have heard Mosins prefer heavier bullets. The Youtube videos I've seen with the best accuracy seem to have people reloading 200 to 205-grain bullets. If you're looking for factory ammo, try the 203-grain Silver Bear ammo and see how that shoots.

Riven_Cole
May 6, 2013, 02:38 PM
maybe i have been lucky with my ammo and rifle but i get about 3-4.5 inch groups at 100 with surplus. of course i use a cocking knob peep as well.

btw wardenwolf: love the signature. just cause someone does not fit the oxymoronic definition of normal does not mean their rights must be forfeit.

morcey2
May 6, 2013, 03:29 PM
My load is very similar to -Jake-'s except I use the .312" Hornady BTHP from grafs and 45 gr of Varget. Same case and primer, but I can't remember the OAL off the top of my head. I also do a medium crimp with the Lee FCD (1/2 turn from contact w/ the shell holder.) I've only had time to shoot them out of one of my mosins which is an M44 w/ a good bore that slugs at .313" and it gives me between 1" and 2" 5-shot groups at 100 yards.

Matt

BCRider
May 6, 2013, 06:38 PM
Based on roughly this same info posted on another forum I'm going to slug the bore to get a better idea of what diameter bullets might be best.

In the meantime I'm likeing the looks of your results Jake.

At the moment I've got two boxes of Hornady "Match" 174gn BTHP bullets. Despite the "Match" name they were the cheapest modern looking bullets at the supplier so I figured that I couldn't go too far wrong.

And at 174gn they are on the heavier side so I'm hoping to see them do fairly well if you fellas are correct about the Mosins likeing heavier bullets.

stubbicatt
May 7, 2013, 09:05 AM
Thanks for the load data, fellas. It has been helpful.

Another nugget that might be of help to you guys, and which I am still wrestling with, is shoulder relocation under firing. Not my shoulder, the shoulder of the case!

By this I mean, in the M/N rifles I have had, the shoulders of the as fired cartridges are always pushed forward as compared to an unfired cartridge. While this does nothing "wrong" I guess, it does not affect headspace, it presents a quandary for the handloader. Does one FL size the cases to set the shoulder back to its original position, or neck size only? If one neck sizes, where does one find neck sizing dies for the beast?

I had a custom sizing die made for the old Tula, but it has since been sold, and I am on the fence about this for the remaining Izzy in my collection.

Yesterday I received 100 of those Lapua rebated heel FMJ bullets? I am excited to try them out at some point. As I sit here, I realize I spent $.50 apiece for these bullets, and while it seemed like a good idea at the time, there is no way this rifle can shoot as well as my 308s! Oh well, at deer camp I can boast of the least expensive rifle with the most expensive ammunition.

morcey2
May 7, 2013, 09:38 AM
Thanks for the load data, fellas. It has been helpful.

Another nugget that might be of help to you guys, and which I am still wrestling with, is shoulder relocation under firing. Not my shoulder, the shoulder of the case!

By this I mean, in the M/N rifles I have had, the shoulders of the as fired cartridges are always pushed forward as compared to an unfired cartridge. While this does nothing "wrong" I guess, it does not affect headspace, it presents a quandary for the handloader. Does one FL size the cases to set the shoulder back to its original position, or neck size only? If one neck sizes, where does one find neck sizing dies for the beast?

I had a custom sizing die made for the old Tula, but it has since been sold, and I am on the fence about this for the remaining Izzy in my collection.

Yesterday I received 100 of those Lapua rebated heel FMJ bullets? I am excited to try them out at some point. As I sit here, I realize I spent $.50 apiece for these bullets, and while it seemed like a good idea at the time, there is no way this rifle can shoot as well as my 308s! Oh well, at deer camp I can boast of the least expensive rifle with the most expensive ammunition.
I use an RCBS neck sizing die for my mosins. I don't remember where I picked it up. I wish Lee made a collet neck die for it because I use that almost exclusively in my other calibers. I was going to have them make a custom die set for me, but in all of the madness, they've suspended their custom work for the time being.

One issue with neck sizing is that you'll need to keep the brass segregated with the rifle in which it was fireformed. If you only have one rifle, that's easy. I've got a stack of them, but I've only fired the handloads in one of them so far.

On the Lapua bullets, do you happen to have a link? Are they the ones with the step just before the boat tail?

Matt

docsleepy
May 7, 2013, 12:02 PM
You want to add just your full length sizing die so that you minimally re-size those cases, or you may have an early head separation, especially with the charge level's that I am seeing written here.

I have had a partial head separation with a Mosin-Nagant, and it was not fun. These rifles do not appear to have exit holes drilled in the receiver, and I got a face full of high velocity powder.

Back your full length die out, and then screw it back in until Cases sized by it just began to fit into your chamber. This will take a little experimentation. But the result will be that you stretch your cases much less on each cycle.

You can make a neck sizing collet die by taking a lee .308 next sizing die, and adding 3 mm thickness worth of steel washers glued to the bottom of the die. You may have to drill out the washers, to allow a case to go inside them, and you may have to file the outside of the washers so the die will fit inside your screw hole, but it can be done.

Mosin chambers are quite variable. I have one that is quite tight, and one that is quite loose.


If you have the Hornady overall length gage, you can measure your throat erosion, and get an idea of how close to the lands your bullets are. I suspect this may be why heavier, which are longer, bullets work better.

BCRider
May 7, 2013, 12:54 PM
I've got some Cerrrsafe metal here that melts at just over the boiling point of water. It's perfect for casting the chamber to check on this stuff.

I've also got a neck sizer for .303 British that I was hoping I could use on the Mosin brass. But I'm not 100% sure of how the neck sizing dies operate at this point so I don't know if the necks are long enough.

But yeah, the plan was to leave the cases as fire formed and only neck size. Or to very minimally set the shoulders back to suit the rifle's chamber.

What I'm finding encouraging is that these old war horses are capable of really good performance. The results given by you folks really shows that these rifles can be more than just range giggle shoulder thumpers.

Kachok
May 7, 2013, 01:05 PM
Prvi ammo is some good stuff, it shoots 3/4" in my 6.5x55 and hits deer like a MAC truck, not bad at all for what it costs.

BCRider
May 8, 2013, 12:41 AM
For the most part I agree. For my short time shooting and 60 year "old guy's eyes" the issue is not the ammo at all but my ability to see and the fact that I'm still learning how to shoot well from a rested position. I've come to learn that while it has huge advantages it's also a skill just as delicate as shooting well from a free standing position.

Although it doesn't explain the flyers. I don't THINK I jerked the gun but perhaps I did. Even so the flyers were a LONG way out from the target. I can't believe that I pulled it that far. A few inches off the bullseye I could see. But as much as a foot and a half? Seems a little much.

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