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 7.62x54r Improved

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SilverTip
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PostSubject: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri May 10, 2013 3:42 am

*update on page 2 of this thread. New range data* 12-6-2015

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Well, my wait is finally over! Something like 6weeks I think it was. I ordered a custom reamer from Pacific Tool and Gauge. Thanks to HipShot for helping with the CAD work!

I changed the Mosin case to increase capacity, decrease case taper, push the shoulder forward, and increase shoulder angle.

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My brother made a mock up of the case (left) while we waited on the new reamer.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri May 10, 2013 2:51 pm

GREAT STUFF! Can't wait to hear the results of the final testing!
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sun May 19, 2013 1:13 pm

I'll look forward to your report on ballistics and accuracy of your new round.

I hope it's a great success.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sun May 19, 2013 6:03 pm

Thanks. Its slow goin round here. Always sooo much keeping me busy. But I just chambered a barrel. Hope to assemble the rifle, and form some brass first thing.

Which reminds me, I need to get a 54R neck sizing die so I can load the formed brass.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:12 am

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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jun 05, 2013 5:34 pm

Nice! So have you made up some shells to load and test once the barrel is reamed and ready to go?
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:40 am

Yup. I have fired some. I was trying to use the 'cream of wheat' method. And I only had reloader 7, so I couldnt get the cases to build enough pressure to fully form. They are only half formed. I need to just shoot live ammo I reckon. The Lapua formed the closest, and looks pretty promising.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:16 pm

"Cream of wheat method"?????
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu Jun 06, 2013 1:01 pm

lol
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:49 am

Not sure if this would work for this cartridge, but.....

I used no filler and 700x along with a crayon plug to fireform 30-30 brass to 38-55. This worked very well, and I fireformed the brass in my garage while aiming into some sheetrock pieces that I had laying around. 5-6 made sure the crayon bits didn't make much of a mess, and the exact load of powder....well that was something that I needed to work up to until I built up enough pressure to reform the brass.
Prime cartridge, put powder charge in, and stick crayon in so that it doesn't go further than case shoulder, break off crayon, and fire round.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri Jun 07, 2013 1:19 pm

Nice Bubbas, Smile I will look into that.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:04 pm

SilverTip, you can probably shoot this rifle and round for years without ever getting a custom full length sizing die. Once you have fire formed brass, you can use any suitable diameter and length collet or bushing neck sizing die (collet style would require adding a ring to the die or shell holder to close the collet at the correct height, while a bushing style need only be for a cartridge with longer length to the base of the neck) for the remaining life of the cartridge.

If it were me, I'd have given up a little case volume to leave the neck longer, but that's because I'd be mostly interested in shooting paper patched cast bullets, rather than paying an arm and a leg for commercial jacketed type. Your short neck isn't very suitable for cast (from what I've been reading), but should work fine with jacketed (which are the easier ones to use for the kind of velocity this round ought to develop -- ought to be about like a .30-06 with the right powder, compared to the approximately .308 ballistics of the original 7.62x54R).
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jun 08, 2013 4:41 pm

I was wondering if you couldn't duplicate the original .300 H&H loads with this.

According to this site:

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the volume of a .300 H&H (originally a fairly low-pressure round like these others) case is 86 grains of water; the 30-06 is 69; and the 7.62x54r is 64

How much can your improved round hold?
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jun 08, 2013 5:05 pm

Great info Zeiss. A redding collet die is the plan.

Thats also good info on the lead cast vs short neck. Imo, this gun has a specific intended purpose, and cast/unjacket bullets dont fall into that purpose.

Thats a good question Ampy. [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] Im getting ready to hit the lake today, otherwise I would fully form one finally and find out. Or we could start a pool and the winner gets.....?

Im gonna say it will increase capacity by 3grains. So 67 grains when all said and done.

Let me check some of my partially formed cases. brb

A quick check just for fun, the partially formed cases hold 475units of water (from a syringe). Dont know what that converts to. And im bout to head to the lake at the moment.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jun 08, 2013 5:23 pm

I think that converts to 4.75cc's
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jun 08, 2013 9:13 pm

A cubic centimeter of water masses one gram. There's ~15.4 grains / gram

So ... 4.75x15.4=73.15 grains

About 5% more than a 30-06 and nowhere near the 300 H&H.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Jun 11, 2013 8:17 am

With 73 grains water capacity compared to 69 for .30-06, I'll stand by my estimate that the 7.62x54R Bond Improved ought to about equal .30-06 ballistics (larger case capacity, but lower working pressure). That means you ought to be able to push a 180 grain bullet to about the same 2900-3000 ft/s you'd get with a 150 grain in the original cartridge, or get the 150 grain up into the range of 3200+, without overstressing anything. That makes the "Russian .30-06" really live up to its name!
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Jun 11, 2013 1:14 pm

Well, dont jump the gun there just yet, I probably measured wrong. I was in the middle of getting ready for a fishin trip.
I probably messed it up. I will get on it and get one formed and measured asap.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:47 pm

Heres some I formed using the Cream of Wheat method. The farthest left one turned out the best so far.

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PostSubject: 7.62x54R improved   Sat Nov 30, 2013 3:21 am

Very nice headway on that wildcat!!
   I am looking at chambering that round in my encore with a 22 inch barrel. That would be a great cartridge for any break open firearm actually.
  The cartridge is already a little more powerful than a 308 so I am pretty confident you can match 30-06 ballistics with it improved like that without as much powder as the -06'.
You may want to look at mike bellms page on the 7.62x54R as well as his write up on rimmed straight wall cartridges. He was trained by Ackley and took over his business.
You should be able to fire the brass commercial round in that chamber and it will fireform beautifully it not better than the method your using or just make a fireform die out of a barrel chunk.

The reason I would go with a straight walled rimmed case in the encore is mainly for less back thrust on the receiver not to mention very minimal case stretch with the case shoulder.
The same could be said about the 30-40 Krag improved or a 30-30 improved and did you know you can match factory 300 mag ballistics reloading a 30-40 improved?....Factory I said.. But the 54R would have less recoil too,,if that was a concern. I think a 7mm or 270 in the 54R would be a very excellent choice too. The brass is available and cheap, I just bought 200 rounds under $90 from Graf n sons I think it was.
   I will keep you posted when I too get up and going as I plan to do a huge amout of testing out to 600 yards and chronographing too.
    I will say though that I got a box of loaded winchester current production 7.62x54r ammo and disassembled the cartridge to find that particular brass they used is very week at the base so I can't imagine it would make it through too many loadings before a stretched primer cup.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Nov 30, 2013 11:02 am

Howdy Rbarnes! Welcome and thanks so much for all that info. welc 

I did not know of mike bellms, i will def look him up right away. thumb

I love that breakover idea. Cant wait to see what you come up with. What projectile?

I do plan on firing factory loaded brass, just havent had enough range time yet. I also have to modify a collet so that I can hold stock mosin barrels in my lathe much better. :(I also need to acquire another Mosin. Or just a spare barrel. BuyMilsurp was out of them last I checked.

I originally did want a straight wall case, but some said it would make extraction difficult. :idk:So I went with something close to that. 

Thats very interesting about the 30-40 improved. I will pass that along to a Krag friend of mine.

Yes, my ultimate goal I think is gonna be this 54r improved loaded with 7mm. I think that would be a hum dinger!

I bought 100/pc of Lapua brass. Absolutely GREAT brass. I have noticed I dont like the Winchesters very much. The PPI brass is pretty nice.

  Definitely keep me posted! interesting

Are you in need of a 54r improved reamer?
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PostSubject: russian improved in a few calibers   Sat Nov 30, 2013 9:32 pm

270 or 7mm would be a good round but I noticed they use the 6mm and 6.5x54R versions for target work overseas. Could be interesting??
 I see custombulletsandbrass.com have the 6.5x54 listed as a wildcat die but no improved... I will keep you posted though and thanks for your reply..
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:46 pm

Ok, finally got to shoot some loaded ammo. Went off without a hitch. I didnt put much concern into accuracy, since these are being fire formed. That will be the next round of tests.

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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Mon Feb 10, 2014 3:16 pm

Looks like those formed nicely.  No split shoulders or other issues?
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Feb 11, 2014 2:55 am

No issues. Went really well.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Feb 11, 2014 9:22 am

If my rifle were a little less original it'd be tempting to either get the specs and make a reamer or ask to borrow/rent yours.  As it is, though, I don't really have a need for the extra power (no game bigger than whitetail or black bear near me) and my rifle is about 99% original (Smith Sights adjustable front sight, scraped barrel channel to float the barrel, and Finn bent sear spring w/ polished sear surfaces, as received in the cosmoline).  If I had money to spend, I might buy a rifle to convert...
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Feb 11, 2014 2:34 pm

Im trying to measure capacity now. But its hard to find a published baseline for 54r.
So far, my first measurement came out to be 4.28cc's of water. But I need to do more to get an average.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Feb 12, 2014 2:00 am

Ok. So far im coming up with 12.25% increase in case capacity. Using water volume.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Feb 12, 2014 1:57 pm

I found a reference [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] that gives the original 7.62x54r as having a "useful" capacity of 3.43 cc, which is barely smaller than .308 Win aka 7.62x51 NATO at 3.64 -- by comparison .30-06 has a published figure barely larger than what you measured (bullet seating will matter more with that short neck).  Original pressure for the Russian round is lower than .308, but higher than .30-06 loaded for a Garand (I've seen x54r published at 55,000 vs. 50,000 to avoid overstressing a Garand operating rod), but not a lot different; I'd say you'll be right in the ballpark for matching .30-06 Springfield performance with careful powder selection.  Find an accurate load and you'll be able to do anything a '03-A3 can do.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Feb 12, 2014 2:27 pm

Excellent :)Thats my goal. 
My hornady books says the same thing. "Useful capacity"...  scratchhead     So I just skipped all that and measured the different between a stock round and the improved.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu May 08, 2014 2:51 pm

Bump.

Anything new on this front?

Are you a gunsmith or would you be willing to lend your reamer to your designated `smith for others to use and experiment with?  Along the lines of the previous post, this looks like a great choice for a Handi rifle or such.

For the poster wondering about the comparison to the old 300H&H, I did a quick calculation in Load from a Disk.  Using the 112% increase, for 68gr and ~45K CUP pressure limit, results were pretty impressive, 215gr Woodleigh @2400fps.

Cheers,
Bryce


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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu May 08, 2014 4:48 pm

Hey thanks for the interest Bryce.
I have some brass formed, polished and waiting to be reloaded. Havent got any farther than that yet.

If youre interested in buying one, PTG can make you a reamer. I think the details are in the video in the first post.

Id def consider lending the reamer out to friends. Thats may be the only way to get some progress on this project. lol

Alternatively, I do believe its perfectly legal for a non ffl to work on someone elses barrel. If that is the case, id be more than happy to rechamber your barrel if you have it off your receiver.

Ive done 2 with this reamer so far. One with the barrel removed, and one with the gun still fully assembled. Both came out identical. The brass in the latest pics are from the gun I reamed fully assembled.

I am also planning to make these reamers eventually. I have finally acquired all the tooling to do so.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sun May 18, 2014 1:33 pm

Finally got case capacity measured. The new cartridge holds 73gr of water.
The factory cartridge holds approx 58.2gr of water.  A difference of 14.8gr.  Which I think comes to a 20% increase in case capacity.

This is PPU brass.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sun May 18, 2014 2:10 pm

Given 15.4 grains per gram, and that pure water weighs one gram per milliliter, that would come to 4.74 grams, compared to the original 3.43 -- and it puts you above 7.62x51 NATO for case capacity.  Even if limited to only 55,000 psi, that should do everything you want.  Paper patch a suitable cast bullet and use a slow enough powder, and you'll likely be able to push a 150 grain slug to 3100+ (FMJ surplus ammo is published as 2960 from the original round in a 91/30; paper patch has lower sliding friction but will take all the velocity a jacketed will, with the right load).

BTW, your case is closer to 125% of the original -- 73/58.2=1.254.   Shocked
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue May 20, 2014 9:56 pm

Zeiss Ikon wrote:


BTW, your case is closer to 125% of the original -- 73/58.2=1.254.   Shocked
 Shocked   how did you arrive at that? You are kinda right. Just drop the 1. Then you got 25.4%

  

Ok, had to dust off the old math brain cells.

73-58.2=14.8

14.8/58.2=.2542955

.2542955x100=25.4% increase in case capacity.

 arrgggg
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed May 21, 2014 10:21 am

We're saying the same thing -- total capacity is 125% of the original, which is a 25% increase.  I used the version that gives the ratio of capacities, you used the version that measures the difference as a fraction of the smaller.  Either way, you're very similar to .30-06, meaning you should be able to get similar performance at similar pressures -- given the load-down required for the Garand action, your Improved cartridge from a Mosin should match or even beat a Garand firing period correct ammunition (especially so in the long rifles).
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed May 21, 2014 9:52 pm

Oh my bad. I misread. Thought you said 125% increase.

Anyways, im happy with that. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jul 02, 2014 1:34 pm

Any new info on this project yet? I find it exciting
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:00 pm

Welcome Pmac_58, and thank you.

I am to the point where I am ready to load up formed cases. Things have been hectic around here, and I changed shifts. But everything is settling down now. So I should be able to get out and unload some rounds.  But I havent even determined a starting load yet either. Actually, thats where everyone here could come in handy. I'd like to gather opinions on what you all think a good start should be.

I have some, and can get most of the common North American powders no problem. Unfortunately Vitaviouri is my favorite, and its the hardest to get. But I do have n140, n540, and n165.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:23 pm

Late last night i was toying with the idea of necking down a 7.62x54R to a 7mm projectile, one thought led to another and I asked myself, "has anyone ever tried make an improved version of the cartridge?" So I Googled it, and found your Youtube video. I got really excited when you mentioned the 7mm, glad to see I'm not the only one who thinks its a good idea!! It could be just what I'm looking for to take my long range Mosin to the next level.

Do you have custom dies for the improved cartridge?
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:13 pm

Ya. For my purpose, I will only need to neck size the improved cartridge. So this greatly simplifies things.
I bought a Lyman 54r full length sizing die. I put the die in the lathe, and bored out the main body but did not touch the neck sizing portion. Then I went back in with a 40deg tool and chamfered the leading edge of the neck sizing portion of the die just slightly. Then some dowel rod and flitz to polish.
I only crushed one case before I got it working lol  Embarassed  But its works like a charm now.

 I do not have any dies made for necking down the 54r. But I have saved an old 7mm rem mag die for just this reason.

I really do think 7mm will make it an awesome shooter! Go for it! 

6.5x54r holds many records over across the pond.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri Jul 04, 2014 10:00 am

SilverTip wrote:
I'd like to gather opinions on what you all think a good start should be.

I'd think you could start with a good full-case load from the original 7.62x54R -- that is, pick a load that's a slow enough powder to fill the original profile case, and it should be close enough to a full case for a starting load in the Improved.  You could also probably use Garand level .30-06 loadings safely (those are generally milder than "full" .30-06 loads, to prevent damaging the operating rod).

The issue comes when you start to work up; I've read that x54R doesn't give classic pressure signs before it exceeds SAAMI pressure limits (because it's a "low pressure" round by modern rifle standards -- 55,000 psi vs. the 65,000 to 75,000 in .308, .270, etc.).  On the other hand, if you've proof tested your rifle since rechambering (20% overload as calculated with a program like Quickload -- tied down and fired remotely) you should be safe working up to classic pressure signs like difficult extraction, flattened or cratered (or, in the extreme, pierced) primers, etc.

All that said, I'd recommend buying Quickload; it's a lot cheaper than damaging a rifle because you guessed wrong, never mind medical bills if you blow a chamber while shoulder firing.  All reports I've seen suggest Quickload is very reliable if you have good data to feed into it; with existing cartridges it'll give accurate pressures within a few thousand psi (that's good for calculated pressures), and I gather it's got the ability to define a new cartridge by volume, body taper, shoulder angle, etc.  It's a great shortcut to getting to a safe starting load for a new cartridge (and it's been used for much more radical wildcats than your 7.62x54R Improved).
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Fri Jul 04, 2014 10:07 am

As always, full of good info Zeiss. Thanks, I will look into that. 
I feel comfortable with 30-06 loads. Just curious what others are thinking.
And I can interpret pretty well most minor pressure changes my mosins exhibit. Extraction being the easiest.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:52 pm

I have also considered the 6.5x54r in an improved version. I want to push my target Mosin to its limits. 1000 yards and beyond. Your reamer has a removable pilot, correct? So chambering in a 6.5 or 7mm would be as simple as swapping out the pilot. Would you be willing to rent or lend me the reamer? I would love to try it out myself.
Although I would have to take it to my gunsmith, as I do not own a lathe.
I will have to post pictures of my Mosin build when it comes back from being duracoated. I have lovingly dubbed her "Anastasia."
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Mon Jul 07, 2014 11:25 am

pmac_58 wrote:
I have also considered the 6.5x54r in an improved version. I want to push my target Mosin to its limits. 1000 yards and beyond. Your reamer has a removable pilot, correct? So chambering in a 6.5 or 7mm would be as simple as swapping out the pilot. Would you be willing to rent or lend me the reamer? I would love to try it out myself.
Although I would have to take it to my gunsmith, as I do not own a lathe.
I will have to post pictures of my Mosin build when it comes back from being duracoated. I have lovingly dubbed her "Anastasia."

Ha! Great name, cant wait to see her.

Yes, the reamer has a removable pilot. But I think (am not certain) that the neck and throat dimensions of the reamer would be too large for a 7mm attempt.  Crying or Very sad  You would probably be cracking necks.
I know, this bummed me out also. I will have to custom make one when I attempt the 7mm build.

At my current rate of progress, that would be when im 50years old. So the sooner you get yours done, the sooner I can go fishing and not feel guilty.  Twisted Evil

The reamer is currently already loaned out to a good friend of mine, who I owe a great deal of (firearm related) favors to. Not sure when it will be back home unfortunately.  If I run into some extra cash, I will just order another one and create a rental situation.  Suspect  An important life lesson has just occurred to me. Although i have the machinery and tools to cut a reamer. My knowledge and time are still greatly lacking lol
 Embarassed
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Thu Jul 10, 2014 6:12 pm

Making a reamer for a single user is pretty simple -- just turn the desired chamber profile in drill rod, mill (or file, or even grind) away material to make a D bit out of the chamber portion, leaving the pilot round, then harden fully and temper to just about file hard.  The only big snag you're likely to run into is distortion during the quench on hardening.

Of course, that requires a lathe, but only a small one; I could easily do a .50 BMG chamber reamer on my small Chinese lathe, which won't come close to spinning a Mosin barrel (for either length or diameter through the spindle).  Reaming a chamber to convert from x54R to x54R Improved could be done by hand or, if you leave a long enough shank on the reamer, with a power drill.  No lathe needed, no floating pilot required -- those are refinements that greatly simplify doing a lot of chambers, but aren't really needed for a single if you're willing to take your time and work carefully.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Aug 06, 2014 7:06 pm

I totally forgot about the D bit reamers Zeiss.  thumb  That will work out just fine. I have some carbide round laying around that would work for one. Just dont know if I could stand that many hours at the grinder.

I have some 01 oil rod also. I'll make my first one out of that, and cut and cast a few chambers.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Wed Aug 06, 2014 7:10 pm

Ok. Finally got a chronograph and bullet comparator. So now im ready to load and shoot some 'improved' rounds and gather data.  arrgggg 

Incase anyone has any input or experience with these items, its a Crony Gamma w printer, and the Hornady Bullet Comparator.
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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:58 pm

Well, heres the capacity results I got.


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PostSubject: Re: 7.62x54r Improved   Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:19 pm

Got to do a little shooting today. Heres some of the data I gathered, before some rain moved in.

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All cases were neck sized only.

PPU brass 54r improved with Hornady 150gn bullet, IMR4350:
51gn = 2438.55 fps
52gn = 2479.54 fps
53gn = 2581.57 fps

Lapua brass 54r improved with Hornady 150gn bullet, Vit-140, 3 shot avg:
44gn = 2422 fps
45gn = 2470 fps (to light of load, brass getting blow back)
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