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Posted: 1/25/2006 6:46:49 AM EDT
The supply of 7.62 NATO is slowly drying up; so I'm building up my stash of milsurp; but would like a suggestion on commercial ammo that would be a good substitute for practice. Would Winchester USA govt white box 147 gr .308 be a safe alternative? By the way, I shoot a DSA SA 58. Thanks for the advice.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 6:57:24 AM EDT
I don't think the supply is drying up.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 3:21:49 PM EDT
Maybe "drying up" is not the correct term, but it's certainly not as easy to find (or cheap) as it was. South African is still around and linked Port, but one of my .308's (PTR91) does not like SA .I'm getting components lined up to start reloading again if it gets much worse.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 3:27:30 PM EDT
wolf .308.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 3:01:39 AM EDT
Winchester USA, Remington UMC, Federal American Egale, hell even PMC will work well for a sub for 7.62 ball amoo.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 3:32:11 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Gregory_K:
Winchester USA, Remington UMC, Federal American Egale, hell even PMC will work well for a sub for 7.62 ball amoo.



So, the above listed ammo is safe in terms of chamber pressure? I know military headspace is greater than SAAMI headspacing; you know similar to the .223 vs 5.56 ammo/chamber pressure question? Also, which is loaded hotter; milsurp or SAAMI/commercial ammo?
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 4:45:48 AM EDT
What's the Difference between .308 Winchester & 7.62x51mm NATO?
by Clint McKee and Walt Kuleck

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
dumb question i alway thought these 2 ammos where interchangeable but some have told me otherwise whats the story??? jim

Hi, Jim,

This is a perennial topic, kinda like ".45 vs. 9mm" or "Best Guns & Loads for Deer."

They are not the same.

They are the same.

They are not the same, 'cause the .308 Win was released by Winchester several years before the Army standarized the T64E3 as the 7.62MM. You'll get an endless discussion of pressure specs, endless because SAAMI and the Ordnance Dep't measured pressure in different, unrelateable ways. Howver, the chamber drawings are different.

They are the same, 'cause nobody (and Clint's been looking for many years!) makes 7.62MM ammo that isn't to the .308 "headspace" dimension spec. So 7.62MM ammo fits nicely into .308 chambers, as a rule.

But in some 7.62MM rifles the chambers are long (to the 7.62MM military spec), notably the Navy Garands with 7.62MM barrels. Thus, using commercial ammo in such a rifle is not a good idea; you need stronger brass. Use military ammo or the best commercial only, e.g., Federal Gold Medal Match.

Most of the time it's a distinction without a difference. But if you intend to shoot .308 commercial in a military arm chambered for 7.62MM, first check the headspace with .308 commercial gauges first. You may get a surprise.

Best regards,

Walt Kuleck
Fulton Armory webmaster


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Clint, What's the difference between .308 Winchester & 7.62x51mm NATO?

Jerry Kuhnhausen, in his classic Shop Manual (available from Fulton Armory; see the M1 Rifle Parts & Accessories or M14 Rifle Parts and Accessories Pages under Books) has published a somewhat controversial recommendation concerning .308 Winchester and 7.62x51mm NATO ammo, headspace & chambers. I broached the subject with him some months ago. He had his plate full, so we decided to chat on this in the future. When we do I'll report the results of our conversation.

I completely agree with Jerry that if you have a chamber with headspace much in excess of 1.636 (say, 1.638, SAAMI field reject), you must use only U.S. or NATO Mil Spec Ammo (always marked 7.62mm & with a cross enclosed by a circle) since the NATO mil spec calls for a far more "robust" brass case than often found in commercial (read .308 Winchester) cartridges. It is precisely why Lake City brass is so highly sought. Lake City brass is Nato spec and reloadable (most NATO is not reloadable, rather it is Berdan primed). Indeed, cheaper commercial ammo can fail at the 1.638 headspace (e.g., UMC) in an M14/M1 Garand. Many military gas guns (e.g., M14 Rifles & M60 Machine guns) run wildly long headspace by commercial (SAAMI) standards (U.S. Military field reject limit for the M60 & M14 is 1.6455, nearly 16 thousandths beyond commercial (SAAMI) GO, & nearly 8 thousandths beyond commercial (SAAMI) field reject limit!).

I also agree that 1.631-1.632 is a near perfect headspace for an M14/M1A or M1 Garand chambered in .308 Winchester. But I think that it also near perfect for 7.62mm NATO!

I have measured many, many types/manufacturers of commercial and NATO ammo via cartridge "headspace" gauges as well as "in rifle" checks. If anything, I have found various Nato ammo to be in much tighter headspace/chamber compliance than commercial ammo. Indeed, sometimes commercial ammo can not be chambered "by hand" in an M14/M1A with, say, 1.631 headspace (bolt will not close completely by gentle hand manipulation on a stripped bolt, although it will close & function when chambered by the force of the rifle's loading inertia), though I have never seen this with NATO spec ammo. I.e., if anything, NATO ammo seems to hold at the minimum SAAMI cartridge headspace of 1.629-1.630, better than some commercial ammo!

So, why set a very long 1.636 headspace in an M14/M1A or M1 Garand? It probably is the conflict mentioned above. Military headspace gauges say one thing, SAAMI headspace gauges say something else, as do the spec's/compliance covering ammo. In a court of law, who will prevail? I think Kuhnhausen gave all those who do this work a safe way out. However, I believe it not in your, or your rifle's, best interest. Whether you have a NATO chambered barrel (M14/M1 Garand G.I. ".308 Win."/7.62mm NATO barrels all have NATO chambers), or a .308 Winchester chamber, keep the headspace within SAAMI limits (1.630 GO, 1.634 NO GO, 1.638 FIELD REJECT). This subject is a bit confusing, and for me difficult to explain in a one way conversation!

Clint McKee

Fulton Armory Link

that being said I have shot thousands of 308 out of my M1A (m14 lookalike).

Only problem I ever had was with CAVIAM 7.62 ammo in my rem 700 VSSF 308. bolt was hard to close with this ammo. So I never shot it.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 6:20:17 AM EDT
Great. I just checked headspace on my SA 58. And it's less than 1.634 (No-Go .308). So now I feel better about shooting Winchester USA , PMC, or UMC out of it. I'll just keep adding to my growing stash of SA milsurp. Thanks.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:09:32 AM EDT
when it dries up I'll start reloading for it using milsurp brass, bullets, powder. I only have one .308 right now, a STG58 FAL. Down to about 2k of .308 whammo left
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 11:04:04 AM EDT
I got a case of Q3130 about 6 months ago, and it's marked 7.62mm instead of .308 Winchester. It looks just like M80 ball, with the NATO marked cases, annealed and crimped necks and crimped and sealed primers. It puts out more flash than the .308 Winchester marked WWB I have.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 1:04:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zmeja:
I got a case of Q3130 about 6 months ago, and it's marked 7.62mm instead of .308 Winchester. It looks just like M80 ball, with the NATO marked cases, annealed and crimped necks and crimped and sealed primers. It puts out more flash than the .308 Winchester marked WWB I have.



Who stocks this item ( Q3130) and what's the price?
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 1:43:36 PM EDT
I found it at a local show. Since then, I have not seen it anywhere.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 1:48:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mmj6213:
Great. I just checked headspace on my SA 58. And it's less than 1.634 (No-Go .308). So now I feel better about shooting Winchester USA , PMC, or UMC out of it. I'll just keep adding to my growing stash of SA milsurp. Thanks.



Ed Vandenburg, at Vandenburg Customs set my headspace to 1.632 in my FAL, I shoot milsurp and 308 loads in it, I don't have alot of rounds thru it so I can't tell you that it's 100% reliable, but it has been so far
Link Posted: 1/29/2006 11:55:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By legonas:
wolf .308.



HAHAHAHA!!!

Not in an M1a..at least any of mine.
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 7:01:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2006 7:04:33 AM EDT by FALARAK]

Originally Posted By pyro6988:
I don't think the supply is drying up.



And you would be wrong.

Any quality 7.62x51 milsurp is indeed drying up. I have talked to a few wholsalers on this topic.

This is just the past few years:

Hirt - gone.
Santa Barbara - gone.
Argentine - gone.
Port - gone.
Aussie - gone.

There are really only two different low cost options left out there. Indian and South African.

Indian is crap. So that leaves us with South African. The prices are still relatively very low, given the quality of this stuff.... but it is a limited supply. There is no more new stuff coming in the country... what is here is here. I have heard specualtion that there is about a 6 month supply, then this too will be gone.

I have not heard about any known new surplus coming in. Not to say in another year there wont be another big shipment of something new.... but we dont get guarantees.

I would say, if you like the good quality, low cost, South African right now.... buy all you can afford over the next 6 months.

Remember when we could get South African M193 for 11 cents per round? What happened to all that stuff?
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 7:31:33 AM EDT
One of the local ammo dealers at a show several months ago told me Winchester was discontinuing the Q3130 in favor of the USA3081. Q3130 is the 7.62x51 and USA3081 is the .308 Win versions of the same bullet. The posted muzzle velocities are within a few FPS of each other. Winchester shows no price for the Q3130 while they show a posted price for the USA3081. That may or may not corroborate what I've been told.

I bought 5 cases of the Q3130 a while back and haven't yet broken into it.

I'm considering gearing up with a Dillon press for .308 and punching out a bunch of ammo with Nosler ballistic tips in 150gr as an alternative.

Cheers,

kk7sm

Link Posted: 1/30/2006 8:55:19 AM EDT
I have recently bought the following locally for decent prices

Port Milspec

South African battle pack

Isreali IMI 20 round boxes dated 1980
Link Posted: 1/30/2006 9:45:21 PM EDT
So what manufacturer puts out .308 that has the same specifications as military M80 ball?
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 3:28:52 AM EDT
None or all, depends on how close you want to be.
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 9:20:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By FALARAK:

Originally Posted By pyro6988:
I don't think the supply is drying up.



And you would be wrong.

Any quality 7.62x51 milsurp is indeed drying up. I have talked to a few wholsalers on this topic.

This is just the past few years:

Hirt - gone.
Santa Barbara - gone.
Argentine - gone.
Port - gone.
Aussie - gone.

There are really only two different low cost options left out there. Indian and South African.

Indian is crap. So that leaves us with South African. The prices are still relatively very low, given the quality of this stuff.... but it is a limited supply. There is no more new stuff coming in the country... what is here is here. I have heard specualtion that there is about a 6 month supply, then this too will be gone.

I have not heard about any known new surplus coming in. Not to say in another year there wont be another big shipment of something new.... but we dont get guarantees.

I would say, if you like the good quality, low cost, South African right now.... buy all you can afford over the next 6 months.

Remember when we could get South African M193 for 11 cents per round? What happened to all that stuff?



Your post scared me into running to AIM to buy another case of the South African before it's gone. It's too bad I can't get a few thousand more rounds to go with my little stash that I have. I've got three full cases of Port plus one nearly full case of SA. It'll be a sad day when it's all gone.
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 11:18:38 AM EDT
what about wolf, I've seen the 5.56 battle packs from them that look m193, same specs. They are getting more aggressive in the market, I think we should call them and with enouph demand they could potentially fill the gap
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 5:41:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By MuRDoC:
what about wolf, I've seen the 5.56 battle packs from them that look m193, same specs. They are getting more aggressive in the market, I think we should call them and with enouph demand they could potentially fill the gap



Yes, but will they load the rounds with a powder safe for the garand/m14 gas system? Will they price it reasonably?

Personally, I would like to see someone approach a US manufacturer that can manufacture the ammo for a reasonable price. Kinda like what the CMP did for the 30-06 ammo.
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 6:17:44 PM EDT
I'm going to order another 3 cases of the SA .308, I'd bet it won't even last 6 months and unless something else pops onto the market, tho I don't know from where, I'd bet we see nothing like the amounts we saw in the past.

Cept for the CMP stuff, I've seen almost no surplus GOOD 30/06 lately. I don't think thats going to change any time soon.
Link Posted: 1/31/2006 8:57:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By colt100:

Yes, but will they load the rounds with a powder safe for the garand/m14 gas system? Will they price it reasonably?

Personally, I would like to see someone approach a US manufacturer that can manufacture the ammo for a reasonable price. Kinda like what the CMP did for the 30-06 ammo.



Someone?????

You mean like, a US ammo Mfr. should aproach another US ammo Mfr. and say they would "like milspec ammo for a reaonable price please". It has to have the correct type of powder and projectile weight.


Just what did the CMP do for 30/06 ammo? Other that sell great repacked US lake city surplus. and fine Greek surplus.

Link Posted: 2/1/2006 6:15:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Paradude54:
So what manufacturer puts out .308 that has the same specifications as military M80 ball?



Same bullet loaded to the same velocity so that I wouldn't have to worry about different points of impact between what I've currently got and what I'd be buying. Doesn't need to have the same powder or be packed like M80 though.
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