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Spanish small ring .308 Mausers

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by goon, Oct 11, 2004.

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  1. goon

    goon Member

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    I have seen these small ring 7.62x51 Mausers floating around. Some people are saying that the action might not be able to handle full power rounds. What is the story with these?
    Are they strong enough to handle 7.62 Nato pressures? What about .308 factory ammo?
     
  2. rbernie
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    rbernie Member

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    The action is strong enough for the 308 pressures, but (being a rework of a '93 Mauser) it doesn't have the large-ring's gas venting system. This means that any case failure will result in hot gasses screaming back along the firing pin and out the cocking piece directly onto your face.

    It is for this reason, and this reason alone, that lower-pressure cartridges (such as the 6.5x55 and 7x57) are recommended for the small-ring actions unless the actions are modified (lots of $$) to add pressure venting.
     
  3. jobu07

    jobu07 Member

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    I have a Spanish Mauser that's originally equipped in 7.62 I'ts been stone cold reliable with NATO surplus and other commercial rounds. My only complaint is the sites. But hey, show me another place where you can get a .308 bolt gun for $120 today?
     
  4. Sam Adams

    Sam Adams Member

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    Jobu07

    You might want to check out http://www.mojosights.com/ for some excellent and reasonable priced sights for that rifle.
     
  5. BerettaNut92

    BerettaNut92 Member

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    What is this Spanish Mauser? Same as the FR-8?
     
  6. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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  7. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    rbernie's partially right.

    And partially wrong. Depends on which variant of the Spanish Mauser we're talking about here, the FR-7 or FR-8.

    The FR-7 is based on a small-ring Mauser, with two locking lugs, much like the 93, 94, 95, and 96 Mausers. It's a relatively low-pressure action, best suited to .257 Roberts, 7x57 Mauser, and 6.5x55 Swedish Mauser.

    The FR-8 is based on a large-ring 98 Mauser, with a third safety lug on the bolt, and a more substantial receiver. This is the stronger action that you want to run 8x57 Mauser, .308 Winchester, .260 Remington, .30-06 Springfield, .270 Winchester, and other higher-pressure rounds through. ;)
     
  8. Bwana John

    Bwana John Member

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    Im pretty sure that the small ring Mauser actions were not intended for the pressures generated by 7.62 NATO or .308 Win (~55,000 cup/psi). These were rechamgered from 7mm Mauser(~45,000 cup/psi) to 7.62 CETME which is dimentional the same as the other two above but loaded to a lower pressure level(~45,000 cup/psi).

    I would not shoot modern 7.62/308 ammo in one of these older guns, 1st of all they were not intended for it, and 2nd the metaluragy in Spain was not the best, even the large ring Spanish Mausers are known for weaker steel(than German/CZ... ect)
    I would reload .308 to lower pressures and shoot it however.

    Ive got a Spanish FR-8 that I do shoot 7.62 NATO thru, but that is a M98 action.
     
  9. oldfart

    oldfart Member

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    I had a pierced primer a couple of years ago when shooting my '93 Mauser. I ended up with a bit of brass in my forehead and a new appreciation for my glasses. Afterward O looked carefully at the bolt and compared it with the model '98 bolt. I then went to a gunshow and bought a '93 bolt body and fashioned a shield on it similar to what the '98 has. It should protect me if I ever have similar blowback but it's unlikely that'll ever happen again. Still, anyone can do it. It just takes a bit of welding and grinding to shape it.
     
  10. Sylvilagus Aquaticus

    Sylvilagus Aquaticus Member

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    I bought an FR-7 from a guy who needed cash for $50. a few years back. Headspace checked ok when I did the quick and dirty method, but I cleaned it up thoroughly and put it in a test fixture with a lanyard to test fire it. I used some 7.62x51 ball NATO spec ammo for the test. Of course, just for safety, I hid behind my car to pull the lanyard.

    First round fired ok, but it took a 3 foot piece of cheater pipe to open the bolt. Same with rounds 2 and 3. At that point I decided I was done.

    A few weeks later I got $100 in trade credit for it, and I passed it on with the caveat knowledge I had gleaned.

    If I were gonna get a Spanish Mauser for .308, it'd be a FR-8. I just don't care to play with the FR-7.

    Regards,
    Rabbit.
     
  11. fistful

    fistful member

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    No es FR-7 o 8. Es "Spanish M1916 Short Rifle, converted to .308 Win (7.62 x 51 NATO)" Like the man said, it's a small-ring Mauser, not a half-breed.
     
  12. Feanaro

    Feanaro Member

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    I have heard for a while that the action isn't safe for .308/7.62 NATO... but never seen any problems from it. On the other hand, plenty of people are using them without turning themselves into BBQ. Perhaps it's safe, perhaps it isn't. Run 7.62 NATO surplus if you want to add a safety measure, that is usually lower pressure.
     
  13. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Member

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    What does this vent look like?
     
  14. rbernie
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    rbernie Member

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    Sorry - I presumed it was already identified as a small-ring, given the subject line. :)

    Truth be told, I've actually seen very few FR8s around, and even fewer FR7's. What seems to be in circulation right now are private rechamberings of '16 reworks of the '93 action. The FR7 and FR8 should be identifiable by the CETME tube under the barrel (looking like a gas tube), whereas the more common '16 reworks will look like a traditional Mauser.

    There are several things to look for. The easiest thing is to do is pull the bolt and look for two oblong ports in the bottom of the bolt. The intent of these ports is to allow any escaping gases to flow down the firing pin and into the magazine well and bolt raceways instead of continuing back down the bolt to the cocking assembly. There is also a gas deflector on the bolt shroud, but that's harder to describe. The easiest way to identify the type of bolt shroud is to see if it unscrews (with the safety on) easily or if you need to push in a plunger to rotate it. If you can't rotate it without depressing a plunger on the bolt handle side of the bolt, then it's a gas deflecting shroud.
     
  15. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    Many folks have fired those FR-7 (basically the Model 1893 Mauser) with no problems. But they are fairly soft and were not intended for pressures over about 45k psi. The mil spec 7.62 NATO is well over that, and the max pressure of the commercial .308 can run to 60k (though most loadings are in the 50-55k psi range). In other words, every .308 round fired through one of those would have been considered a proof load for the original chambering.

    The concern is not that they will "blow up" and I have not known any to do so. But they will stretch and batter until the headspace is excessive at which point they are essentially junk since they are not worth spending hundreds of dollars on rebarrelling.

    Hi, Chevrofreak,

    If you look at the bottom of the bolt of an 1893 or 1916 Spanish Mauser you will see a small gas escape hole. You will also note that there is no clip thumb slot in the receiver. If you look at an 1898 Mauser bolt, you will see two large holes. Those holes vent any gas that gets in the bolt into the left locking lug raceway, where it can escape through the thumb notch. Any that gets back further is deflected by the wide flange of the bolt sleeve, something the earlier actions also do not have.

    Jim
     
  16. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    No problem.

    That's true, but then the small-ring 98 Mausers show up and throw everybody for a loop. Myself, I automatically look for the 3rd safety lug. ;)
     
  17. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Member

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    Interesting. It seems mine may have been modified.
     

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  18. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Member

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    Also, mine has the clip slot.

    Please pay no attention to my attempted home gunsmithing work on the reciever.....
     

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  19. rbernie
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    rbernie Member

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    Funny you should mention that.

    I recently bought what I *thought* was a sporterized M48 converted to 308 but which turned out to be a FN-produced small-ring - complete with all post-98 features (third lug, bolt guide, gas deflector on the bolt shroud, gas ports in bolt). That was the first I'd ever seen such a beast, and I'm still at a loss as to the exact parts interchangability (bolt parts, specifically) that I can expect.
     
  20. goon

    goon Member

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    The small ring Mauser I am referring to is the Guardia Civil model. I don't know the real model number on them though.
    Thanks for all the replies.
     
  21. rbernie
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    rbernie Member

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    That's the 1916 rework of the 1893 action, which was originally chambered in 7x57. Somebody has taken the rifle and rebarreled it to 308.

    I'd pass on it, but that's just me.
     
  22. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    Hi, Chevrofreak,

    That rifle was the Model 1916, which had both a better gas escape port and a partial thumb slot. If I understand correctly, most, if not all, FR-7's were based on the Model 1916. But some Model 1893's were rebarrelled also, and those would not have those features.

    Even so, the rifles were not made for .308 pressures. If you have no problems, fine, but I suspect you will after a few hundred rounds of commercial ammo.

    For those commenting on the "small ring" Mauser 98 action, the Yugo 48 is a large ring action; the receiver is shorter than the standard 98, but the receiver ring diameter is 1.4", the same as the Gew.98, K.98k and VZ24.

    Jim
     
  23. rbernie
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    rbernie Member

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    Indeed. The point was that the intermediate large ring action (e.g. M48) is actually the same action length as the small ring receiver. So there is the possibility that a small-ring 98 design could LOOK like a M48 but not be.
     
  24. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    I was thinking of something else...

    Namely, a G33/40 Small Ring 98. Much like the one I had as a kid, and should've kept. :(
     
  25. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Member

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    Jim Keenan, thank you for that bit of info :)

    I've put several hundred rounds of commercial .308 and 7.62 nato through it with no problem at all. During one brief range session I put 60 rounds of NATO spec ammo through it. The gun got VERY hot but showed no signs of problem. Occasionally its hard to chamber a round, as if the neck is too large for the chamber, but I've experienced this on many other rifles as well.

    I am planning on making this a project gun since I already butchered it. I'm installing a chamber insert to allow me to fire 7.62x39 ammo, and will probably do an AK mag conversion. :)
     
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