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7.62 NATO or .308 Winchester

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by jwc7, May 2, 2012.

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  1. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    I'm looking to purchase a 7.62 NATO or .308 Winchester on an AR type platform. Anyone have any opinions on which caliber they prefer and/or any suggestions on a manufacturer that builds a reliable and reasonably inexpensive rifle?
     
  2. allaroundhunter

    allaroundhunter Member

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    They are the same caliber.....

    I have only fired a Rock River Arms .308 AR, but it was very nice and is on my list of guns to get.
     
  3. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    Not really the same caliber. Been doing some research on the two and I find that not only are the brass walls different, but the .308 can go up to 62,000 psi while the NATO is limited to 50,000 psi. GENERALLY speaking, it is ok to fire the NATO in a .308 but not the other way around.
     
  4. Scimmia

    Scimmia Member

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    Old wives tale. NATO isn't limited to 50K PSI, it's limited to 50K CUP, which is a totally different system of measurement. The chambering may be different, but pressure is NOT the reason.
     
  5. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    OK, enlighten me! I'm only going by what I've read so far.
     
  6. ol' scratch

    ol' scratch Member

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    Talk about a can of worms. The reason for the differences in PSI is the way the Europeans and the Americans measured it. There is a difference in the chamber dimensions when comparing the two. The 7.62 NATO chambers are slightly longer. The rounds are demenionally the same, but as mentioned there is a difference in internal case dimensions from the heavier construction. My concern (and it may be unfounded) is excessive case stretch and possible thinning of brass if you reload the commercial brass for a 7.62 NATO rifle due to the longer chamber. The 7.62 NATO spec brass is thicker, so I view it as less of a problem.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2012
  7. Rapidrob

    Rapidrob Member

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    I fired my first 7.62x51 rifle in 1957. Since then I have shot thousands of rounds of .308 out of 7.62x51 NATO chambered with never a problem. I don't use a heavier bullet than what is used for combat of long range matches. Not for a blowing -up problem, but gas port pressures being too high.
     
  8. allaroundhunter

    allaroundhunter Member

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    Yup, here it is. The only possible problem is for reloaders using .308 Win brass out of a 7.62x51 mm rifle due to a slightly longer NATO chamber.
     
  9. ol' scratch

    ol' scratch Member

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    What do you consider inexpensive?
     
  10. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    So...if I understand everyone correctly, if I do not reload, and I use only commercially available cartridges, I should be good going either way; .308 in NATO chamber and NATO in .308 chamber.

    For ol'scratch: I would love to stay under $1,500 if possible.
     
  11. allaroundhunter

    allaroundhunter Member

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    Yes. And does that price point include an optic? Or just the rifle?
     
  12. ol' scratch

    ol' scratch Member

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    If $1500 is just the rifle, I would say AR-10 due to the larger number of accessories and SOME interchangablity with the AR-15
     
  13. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    Just the rifle, I have some really good optics already.
     
  14. allaroundhunter

    allaroundhunter Member

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    The AR-10 has a good reputation, but I have no experience with it. I will also recommend an RRA LAR-8 Predator or Varmint.
     
  15. splithoof

    splithoof Member

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    I have been using quite an amount of .308 & 7.62X51mm ammunition in a good variety of rifles to include military pattern, hunting, target shooting, and a few single-shot pistols. I started been doing this since 1984, and have mixed ammunition from many different makers, reloaded the brass from most of it, and NEVER had any problems. Granted that I size and trim everything to a same uniform length, and care for primer pockets, for all practical purposes I see no difference. If you want absolute accuracy, yes you can separate cases my manufacturer and weight. To my experience the headstamp markings mean nothing when all is said and done.
     
  16. brnmuenchow

    brnmuenchow Member

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    They are not exactly the same true, but close enough to where either one can be fired from a .308 Win. chambered rifle with no issues.
     
  17. Enachos

    Enachos Member

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    +1 For the RRA LAR-8. Excellent rifle!
     
  18. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Headspace is slightly different for the two rounds.

    308 Win “Go" gage is 1.630″
    7.62x51 "Go" gage is 1.635″

    308 Win “No-Go” gage is 1.634″
    7.62x51 "No-Go" gage is 1.6405″

    More info here: http://www.fulton-armory.com/faqs/M14-FAQs/308.htm
     
  19. DesertFox

    DesertFox Member

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    many good ones

    M1A1, M14, Winchester SX-AR (FN-AR in Mossy Oak Brush pajamas) and Remington R-25 (DPMS AR-10 in Mossy Oak Treestand pajamas) here. Other ones I've seen that I'd like to try are the Sig, the FN SCAR 17, the HK and the Colt. All of those but the Sig have rather hair-ball sized price tags.

    Of those that are lying around here, they all have their strong points, they all have their quirks and they are all HEAVY. Specially with good glass. I like the looks of that Sig but have seen lots of comments regarding QC issues with Sig. I'd try to fondle them all to see which one talks to you.

    Oops... Almost forgot ye ole FAL. Prolly my favorite in 7.62x51. HK91 is good too but that lack of last shot hold open on empty mag is kind of a deal breaker.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2012
  20. 35 Whelen

    35 Whelen Member

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    A buddy of mine bought DPMS AR10 type rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor fpr both High Power and hog hunting. That is one heavy beast. Super quality rifle though and very, very accurate routinely grouping around 1/2" (scoped) at 100 yds with Hornady factory ammo.
    I'm sure their .308's would be just as accurate.

    35W
     
  21. nyc71

    nyc71 Member

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    I'm not picking an argument but if you has no interest in the topic then you should not participate. let's stay positive towards one another, we have enough gun haters to deal with as it is.
     
  22. 35 Whelen

    35 Whelen Member

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    Exactly. The OP obviously is new to the forum, so let him ask!

    35W
     
  23. 303tom

    303tom member

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  24. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

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    Just to clarify a few postings:
    1. Yes, both are essentially the same round with 2 names.
    2. 7.62 Nato chambers are a bit more generous than commercial .308 chambers.
    3. Factory loads are completely interchangeable.
    4. Military brass is generally thicker near the base to withstand violent MG extraction, so its internal case is a little less than commercial brass. This is an issue for those reloaders who use hot .308 loads.
     
  25. jwc7

    jwc7 Member

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    I looked at the two references you had in your response and, while small, there are differences, although it seems that they can be fired almost interchangeably.
     
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