American 8mm Mauser really just a 30-30?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by PA Revolver Guy, Apr 29, 2021.

  1. PA Revolver Guy

    PA Revolver Guy Member

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    Hi there folks. I'd love to get thoughts and or opinions on this from those more knowledgeable than me. I understand the issue of why American 8mm is under loaded relative to foreign spec ammo (S&B, Norma etc). Its generally a .318 vs .323 bore thing and the dangers associated with loading the latter into the former. What I don't fully understand is the comparison to the 30-30 winchester and the concept that American 8mm is "weak" or "anemic". Perhaps weak relative to foreign factory ammo or handloading potential of the cartridge but not weak for general hunting of game in the 300lb or less range. Winchester goes as far to say their 170 grain power point 8mm is "recommended" for deer, elk and black bear right on the box. I wouldn't hunt elk with American 8mm ammo or large black bears for that matter. For that purpose, a handloaded 200 grain Nosler Partition at 2,500fps would seem more ethically appropriate but I digress.

    I have a Rem 700C in 8x57 (2004 vintage) 24 inch barrel as well as a 1951milsurp Yugo M48. The Yugo has never been in the hunting fields. I also have a Remington 788 in 30-30 with a 22 inch barrel given to me by an old time hunter friend who had unfortunately past on some years back. I enjoy shooting both calibers and both have taken their fair share of whitetails over the last few years. All within 125 yards or so. I hunt the North Central woods of Pennsylvania. Tioga County to be more specific. I have seen how Remington 170 grain coreloks kill in each caliber. I will say that the 8mm hits a noticeable amount harder than the 30-30. The 8mm seems to put them down fast. Several have been DRT. That said, I dont think there are any flies on the 30-30 out to 100 yards or so. I don't know if 2 inches of barrel length could account for difference I see in the field. I have never lost a deer shot with either caliber but the 30-30 has definitely required more blood trail tracking even when shot placement was relatively similar to the 8mm.

    When I check out the American ammo paper ballistics it would seem that the 8mm mauser has a modest power advantage over the 30-30 in 170 grain loadings. Around 160fps (276fpe) plus about a 10% frontal surface area advantage. Is this not enough difference to make a difference? What I see in the field shows otherwise.

    Underpowered for the caliber, yes. Range constrained, yes. A 30-30 in disguise? I don't think so. All comments welcome!!
     
  2. Shootinator

    Shootinator member

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    The 8mm is a lot more powerful than the 30-30.

    You seem to have a pretty good understanding of it........you just got some bad info on it.

    It can be handloaded to 30-06 levels of power. Perhaps that's what your info source meant to say and just said 30-30 by mistake.

    https://blog.cheaperthandirt.com/8mm-the-worlds-underrated-rifle-cartridge/
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2021
  3. e rex

    e rex Member

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    Nothing wrong with a 8mm, especially if you hand load.
     
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  4. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    Yeah, the 30-30 is an intermediate cartridge capability wise, the 8mm Mauser is a high powered rifle cartridge.

    I'm thinking they meant 30-06, which is a pretty decent comparison to the 8mm Mauser, but typed/said 30-30.
     
  5. jeff-10

    jeff-10 Member

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    I owned a Yugo 8mm once and still have my Marlin 30-30. Nothing comparable really except they are both center fire rifles. Got rid of the M48 because it was a POS. I've always had great interest in but very little need for both the 8mm Mauser and 8MM Rem Mag. I wish they were more popular but calibers have been trending down, not up in the last few decades.
     
  6. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    8mm SAAMI is more nearly comparable to .300 Savage and is nearly as powerful as .30-40 Krag, so I do consider it a step above .30-30.

    You can buy European or nearly European spec 8mm now, which is a steed of a different hue, right there with .30-06.
     
  7. Dave DeLaurant

    Dave DeLaurant Member

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    My understanding was that for a long time American factory 8x57 ammo was loaded very conservatively over concerns about catastrophic failure when shot in unaltered Gewehr 1888 'Comission rifles' and certain sporting rifles with .318" bores. A standard .323" 8x57 load can be chambered in these rifles, where the oversized bullet will cause pressure to spike:

    https://www.americanhunter.org/articles/2017/3/10/behind-the-bullet-8x57-mauser/
    https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/11/2/what-you-should-know-about-8x57-mm-mauser

    American smokeless 45-70 was likewise loaded conservatively because of the popularity of the 'Trapdoor Springfield' action, which lacks the strength of many falling block actions in the same chambering.

    Now I admit the preceeding could just be so much fuddlore, but I recall reading statements to this effect in the gun press on more than one occasion.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2021
  8. Mosin Bubba

    Mosin Bubba Member

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    8mm at full power can basically run side by side with a 30-06. 170gr @ 2300 FPS are the numbers I've got on my head from the Remington 8mm box... that would definitely be a reduced-recoil load in an '06.

    That's where the anemic comments are coming from, but if it's working, keep shooting it.
     
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  9. kcofohio
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    kcofohio Contributing Member

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    I consider the 8x57 in the middle of .308W and 30.06. The 30.06 has the advantage of case capacity.
     
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  10. kell

    kell Member

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    I bought this 8mm years ago because it was cheap and I didn't have one. It had been "sporterized" and drilled for a scope. The scope mounts are off so I have to crank it way over to one side. I ordered some Nosler Silver Tips by mistake (I wanted cheap and missed that the price was for 50 instead of 100). Anyway, I made some rounds and went to sight in an old Weaver K4. The gun puts all the bullets in the same place! I need to figure out how to fix the mount for the scope. I ain't the best shot in the world, but that old Mauser is damn consistent.
     
  11. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Redfield and similar scope mounts have windage movement.
    Burris makes a line of scope rings with ball in socket inserts, available eccentric sets for large changes. I use them on my Winchester with crooked holes.
     
  12. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    A 170gr CorLokt at 2,300fps? Yeah, pretty close to a .30/30.
    But, it ain’t tossing Nerf Balls, either.
    Indeed, a full power 8mm w/196gr bullet at 2,500fps is within spitting distance of a .30/06.
    But, I can speak from experience that the Remington CorLokt load was a deer slayer of the first order. I personally put it closer to the .35Rem in field performance, but that doesn’t sound as derogatory as compared to a .30/30. Which, by the way, is no slouch either!
    Sorta like the 180gr in a .303Brit... only the .35, 8mm, and .303 are a level above the .30/30.
    Inside 200yds, real good “stuff”.
     
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  13. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    In my experience 30-30 factory loads from a common a 20" barrel will just barely make 2000 fps with 170's in the real world. 2300, maybe with handloads and/or a 24" barrel.

    No experience at all with an 8mm Mauser. But from everything I've seen and read it shouldn't be terribly far behind 30-06. Remember, the original 30-06 load was a 150 gr bullet @ 2700 fps. Modern 30-06 loads, in modern rifles, can beat that by a considerable amount. I'm sure the same is true with 8mm Mauser.
     
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  14. ThomasT

    ThomasT Member

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    I have heard that before too. Some saying that the american 8mm loadings at around 2300fps weren't much better than 30-30 170gr loads at 2200fps. The only problem with that is that any 2200fps 30-30 loads were shot in a very long tightly bored barrel. In the real world a 170gr 30-30 from the typical 20" carbine barrel is doing good to get 2000fps and and more likely 1900fps from factory ammo. So even american 8mm loads are more powerful than factory 30-30 loads.

    I load for the 8mm and with heavier bullets the 30-06 has the advantage because of the larger powder capacity. But load an 8mm with a 150gr bullet and 2800-2850fps is doable. The 8mm case will hold a max of 48grs of 4350 without compressing the powder too much.

    I have a letter from P.O. Ackley to my grandfather talking about shooting larger bullets through smaller bores. He said there was no real danger of doing this as long as the case fit the chamber. To prove it he had chambered a 30 caliber barrel to accept a 35 Whelen round and fired it through the gun several times. He stated the bullet simply swaged down to fit the bore. He even sent my grandfather a barrel so chambered and my GF screwed it on one of his Mauser actions and did the same thing. My GF was a custom rifle builder.

    But he made it clear sticking something like an 8mm in a 30-06 rifle and firing it would blow the gun to smithereens. As a matter of fact a local range has the pieces of a rifle mounted on a board that was blown up in just such a manner. The range is Alpine Range Supply in Ft Worth.
     
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  15. milsurpguy

    milsurpguy member

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    Yeah sammi spec is like 35,000psi, which nuters 8mm.
    Euro spec ammo is like 60,000psi.
    8mm mauser uses high ballistic coefficient pointy bullets.
    Not really anything like a 30-30. Euro spec loaded ammo is more like 308win.
     
  16. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    Having a 30-30, 30-40, 7 Mauser, 308, 30-06, 8 Mauser, and a ton of other calibers, the 8 Mauser is a very capable cartridge. Especially for a handloader. But every cartridge benefits from handloading. Euro ammo is hotter. Pretty much always is. Too many lawyers stateside because people apparently can’t read.
     
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  17. Ru4real

    Ru4real Member

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    I think it’s an insult to the 30-30 Winchester to call it basically an 8mm Mauser.
     
  18. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    More the other way around.
     
  19. Ru4real

    Ru4real Member

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    Ballistics prove the 8mm more powerful. The 30-30 Winchester in a M94 Winchester make the 30-30 more useful. My opinion, of course.
     
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  20. NuclearMeltdown

    NuclearMeltdown Member

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    I like those lower-powered commercial loads for target shooting. They make it so the steel buttplate doesn't lay the smackdown on your shoulder. Full-power 8mm can be unpleasant, even in heavy military rifles. Ever shoot the Turkish surplus ammo from a bench wearing just a t-shirt?:eek:
     
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  21. 1948CJ2A

    1948CJ2A Member

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    ^ this
     
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  22. kcofohio
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    kcofohio Contributing Member

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    Yugo surplus is a mule kicker also. That's why my Mauser wears a Limbsaver slip-on. :)
     
  23. T.R.

    T.R. Member

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    Back in the early 1960's my Granddad leased grazing rights for his cattle on Forest Service lands. The adjacent acreage was leased by a Shepard who lived on the property in a large tent. Grandad often brought canned food and other supplies to this man who was named Jose. His rifle was a WWII surplus German rifle in 7.92mm and he used it to kill all manner of alpine game including black bears, cougars, deer, and even elk. Jose was a good shot with his rifle. Even though American ammo is loaded to lower pressure than German ammo, Jose was well armed with this Mauser rifle.

    TR
     
  24. kell

    kell Member

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    I chrono'd these from a 1965 Mdl 94 - 20" bbl. Average of 5 shots.
    Remington 150 SP - 2256 fps Handloads 24.0 gr Hodgdon 4198, 150 Sierra FN - 2079 fps (4 shots, Marlin 336)
    Winchester 150 HP - 2267 fps 26.9 gr Hodgdon 4198, 150 Sierra FN - 2210 fps
    Federal 170 SP - 2100 fps 27.5 gr Hodgdon 4198,150 Sierra FN - 2251 fps (8 shots)

    8mm Mauser
    2496 fps - Bitterroot Valley factory ammo, 175 SP , 7 shots
    2529 fps - 45.2 gr IMR 4895, Speer HotCore 170 SP, 8 shots
    2449 fps - 45.0 gr IMR 4895, Nosler Silvertip 180, 5 shots

    This was all about 10 years ago.
     
  25. Goosey

    Goosey Member

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    RbQVLx9.png
     
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