Reloading 7.62x54R

Discussion in 'General Reloading' started by vodkazombie, Mar 30, 2002.

  1. vodkazombie

    vodkazombie Guest

    I'd love to hear from anyone who reloads for the Mosin-Nagant. I've got several loads worked up for various purposes. Lets share recipes.

    Lets hear from you!
  2. 2tim215

    2tim215 Guest

    7.62X54R Reloading

    Just starting out. Trying to get things together. Have all but power and primers. And a GOOD guide for reloading the 7.62X54R? Have any idea where I can get one??:feedback:

  3. just_a_car

    just_a_car G&G Enthusiast

    Used book store.
  4. I just finished 50 rounds for tomorrow's session at the range. I like 170-180gr. bullets from Speer, Hornady, and Seirra. The latest batch is using Sierra 174gr. match grade hollow points and 44gr. of IMR 4895 powder. I have loaded Hornady .308 BT soft points, and they also work very well.

    Pretty much, any jacketed 145gr to 203gr bullet in .308 to .311 will work. I have heard of guys using .312 but that really seems to be pushing the limit.

    Typically I set the ogive length to about 2.40 inches (using a digital caliper and ogive insert). Standard Winchester or CCI Large Rifle primers on the back end.

    Also be aware that there are 7.62 x 39 bullets in the 125gr. and under for SKS and AK rifle loads. These may work, but I've never heard of anyone using them, and powder measure might be tricky. I guess you could use the typical load for 7.62 x 39 ammo... but again maybe tricky. Besides who want's to shoot that wimpy stuff anyway.:smirk:

    My brass is all reused from pre-loaded Winchester, Wolf Gold, and Igman. I haven't tried Sellier & Bellot or Prvi Partizen but both are reloadable boxer primed.

    I have tried using pulled MilSurp bullets (Czech and Bulgarian) and they seem to work fine as well. But this is a whole other discussion as some Milsurp is crimped and sealed so pulling the bullets can be tricky... but they are cheap target rounds.

    I use a simple Lee Classic loading kit and 7.62 x 54R die set (from Cabellas) and a Cabellas tumbler, both work great for my low volume loading (maybe 200 -300 rounds a month). #16 shellholders all around.

    If you have questions I'm sure that there are a lot of reloaders here as good, brass, non-corrosive, ammo is pretty expensive, so why not relaod it?
  5. mauserman

    mauserman Guest

    :newbie:I assume one can not reload old milsurp ammo, or can you? I have mucho empty cases not knowing whether they are any good or just scrap metal?
  6. .22guy

    .22guy G&G Enthusiast

    Well, most likely they are steel cased and berdan primed. I think this makes it difficult, but not impossible.
  7. mauserman

    mauserman Guest

    They are steel cased and Berdan primed. Would the primer hole have to be drilled out so as to use boxers?
  8. just_a_car

    just_a_car G&G Enthusiast

    I've heard of people doing that and that there are some limited supplies of Berdan primers to be had. Plus, I understand that it's difficult to remove the primers.

    I'm sure it could be done, but you're better off purchasing some of the cheaper brass-cased, Boxer-primed rounds and reloading those.
  9. mauserman

    mauserman Guest

    Heres an article from Chuck Hawks,

    The 7.62x54R Russian (7.62x53R)
    By Chuck Hawks

    The 7.62x54R ("R" for rimmed) was adopted by the Russian Army in 1891 in the Moisin-Nagant infantry rifle, and was used in both World Wars and the Korean War. This cartridge is also referred to as the 7.62x53R when chambered in Finnish rifles. Russian 7.62x54R rifles commonly have a groove diameter of .312" and therefore use what we call .303 caliber bullets, while Finnish rifles have a groove diameter of .308" and take standard .30 caliber bullets.
    The Shooter's Bible shows two Norma factory loads for the 7.62x54R. These are reasonably available in the U.S. The first uses a 150 grain bullet at a muzzle velocity of 2,953 fps with muzzle energy (ME) of 2,905 ft. lbs. The other uses a 180 grain bullet at a MV of 2,575 fps with ME of 2,651 ft. lbs.
    Here are some specifications of interest to reloaders: bullet diameter .308" or .312" (depending on rifle), maximum COL 3.048", maximum case length 2.115".
    The Hornady Handbook of Cartridge Reloading, Sixth Edition shows a variety of loads for the cartridge, with both .308" and .312" bullets. As with the .303 British and .308 Winchester, bullets from 150-180 grains would seem to be the best choice for most hunting purposes.
    The following are typical loads from the Hornady Handbook using .312" bullets. The 150 grain Hornady spire point bullet can be driven to a MV of 2,400 fps with 46.8 grains of H380 powder, or to a MV of 2800 fps by a maximum load of 54.3 grains of H380.
    The 174 grain Hornady bullets can be driven to 2,200 fps with 42.1 grains of W760 powder. A maximum charge of 52.3 grains launches that bullet at a MV of 2700 fps. These Hornady loads all used Norma brass and Federal 210 primers; velocities were taken in a 26.5" barrel

    I will as soon as I blast off the 600+ rounds I have left!
    I've also got 1,700 rounds of Mauser 7.92x57
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2007
  10. Tex in Maine

    Tex in Maine Guest

    as cheap as this mil/sirp ammo is , it seems it would really be a waste of time to reload this stuff, all my empty cases remain at the range in the waste barrel.
  11. I'm no reloader (yet). But according to what I've read, step one in reloading is to slug your barrel before deciding what diameter bullet to use.

  12. just_a_car

    just_a_car G&G Enthusiast

    I've heard the same. Here's a link to one of our best sources for information on mosins,'s tutorial on doing such: Mosin Nagant Rifle Bore Slugging Tutorial

    Also, a reloading manual I picked up suggested using Cerrosafe to also cast a mold of the chamber and muzzle.
  13. Tex in Maine

    Tex in Maine Guest

    agrees with JAC, that is a very infomative site..
  14. Okay; that's a new one on me. I don't even know what Cerrosafe is.
  15. just_a_car

    just_a_car G&G Enthusiast

    Well, neither have I, actually. It's referenced in a used book I picked up, copyright 1981 (same year I was born). It's titled Handloading by William C. Davis, Jr. and is a publication of the NRA. It's in a section titled "How to make chamber casts" on page 85. It says that "Cerrosafe" is a "bismuth alloy sold by gunsmith supply houses as chamber-cast metal" and has "a low melting-temperature (158°-194°F.)"

    But, it appears it can be had at Brownells and Midway.
  16. Loading guides are generally included with the dies (at least they are with Lee die sets). I have found that 44-45gr. of IMR4895 is a good general purpose powder load for 170-180gr bullets.
    I have loaded about 400 rounds using several different .308 and .311 bullets (both diameters work fine) and several powder loads, so If you need any help let me know.
    For powder IMR4895 is a good choice. For primers use Winchester or CCI large rifle primers. If you haven't done so already get a Lyman digital scale (~$80) as it will save you a lot of guess work. A decent digital caliper and ogive insert will also come in handy.

    Here's a picture of some ammo. The 3 on the left are reloads (left to right) .311, 174gr. Sierra HPBT match grade, next .308, 180gr. Hornady SPBT, and then .311, 180gr. Speer SP. Next in line is Wolf Gold .311, 150gr. FMJBT (future reloads). Finally the 2 on the right are corrosive, Berdan primed, heavy ball Czech (steel case) and Bulgarian MilSurp (brass case, but Berdan primed and not easily reloadable).

    All of the handloads are measured to 2.45" ogive length. Click on the image to enlarge.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 17, 2007
  17. res45

    res45 G&G Addict

    I'm not sure if this is the case with all Mil-Surplus Berdan primed ammo but the Berdan primer in the Bulgarian LB & HB is a bit larger than the standard US boxer primer so you cant just change them out. About all i do with mine is pull the bullets drop the powder charge to around 47 Grs. and make the charges all equal, seat the bullets all to the correct depth and I get allot more accurate round. One of my 8 1/2 x 11 targets.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2007
  18. ninwnc

    ninwnc G&G Evangelist

    Graf & Sons Has the 7.62 X 54R brass pretty cheap. I have 100 rounds of their brass and have loaded it several times. Seems ok to me.

    I also have Norma and Lapua brass that I have reloaded for years.

    I normally use Sierra bullets, 150 & sometimes 180 grain bullets. I have used some 200 grain bullets and they seem to be the most accurate in my rifle, but when loaded up for accuracy, they tend to have a significant amount of recoil.

    I like relading, and I like shooting my reloads, so, the cheaper surplus ammo is not my personal choice.

  19. toolman

    toolman Resident Sasquatch Forum Contributor

    I generally use the more common .308 bullets for general plinking loads and .310-.312 bullets for accuracy loads, depending on the gun it's to be fired in. The '54R is becoming more popular, so there is a lot more reloading info now that what there was just a few years ago. Lee has two good manuals (1st and 2nd edition) and there are several more including Lyman, Hodgdon, and Hornady. There is also a ton of stuff on the 'net-especially the powder co's websites My favorite is Accurate Arms Company, Inc.). Troy, Cerrosafe is a low temp alloy that has very predictable shrinkage rates. As a general rule, it will contract .001-.002 as it cools. It can also be reused many times. It's really easy to use, push a cleaning jag with a tight-fitting patch to the throat area from the muzzle end and carefully pour the melted Cerrosafe in from the breech until it completely fills the chamber (don't over-fill as you can lock the plug in the bore and have to melt it out-don't ask how I know this!). Let it cool and push it out with the cleaning rod and you've got an exact model of your chamber. You can also use powdered sulfur melted in a double boiler but it smells like he ll.
  20. Sparkytfl

    Sparkytfl Guest

    Didn't this thread used to be two pages?

    I just finished trimming, deburring, and priming 100 of graf brass. None of them actually needed trimming but I just made sure I didn't have any randomly different-sized. A couple were a little rough. That took just over an hour, priming took half an hour.

    I used cci "bench rest" primers because the last couple boxes of regular at the store had some stolen out of each box (the good store was closed so I had to buy them at gander mountain where they leave them out on the shelves). I managed to not blow any primers despite doing this for the first time.

    I'm using the cheap Lee Loader. I was just going to set the bullet depth by using an existing round and matching that, is that fine? I'll probably use whatever bullets and powder the good ammo/reloading store has. Probably 308 150grain. And just the pre-measured Lee scoop of any of the powders the lee chart lists.

    I'm not going for super accuracy, my eyes limit that way more than the ammo. Just I have more spare time than money and don't want to deal with corrosive ammo. Plus local stores don't have surplus anyway and I'm unwilling to mail order any at the moment. Don't want it sitting on my porch in the ghetto for hours or to have to drive to a warehouse to pick it up.