Picking up a pacific/Hornady 366 12 gauge reloader Friday. Nice addition to my preps at $75 in working condition. Now to find a good pistol/rifle reloader to go with it. I have a space set aside I can place a bench in to keep things organized. He is even tossing in wads/hulls/powder!
I use Hornady equipment pretty much exclusively. I like all there kits and have managed to collect every dodad they sell for reloading. I got in the habit before I went to the Army, my dad was a Marine sniper in Vietnam and taught me the finer points of consistency when loading your own ammo.
Wasnt much call for it in the Army as I was a tanker for 23 years and you don’t really reload your own 120mm main gun ammo or you ma deuce (50 cal ) stuff. But it’s still a good skill to have. I’d suggest when you reload shotgun ammo to go with #1 buck, studies by the military have shown that it has a 77% greater chance of causing a lethal wound channel than 00 buck does. I use #1 buck exclusively based on the gelatin tests and battlefield usage I’ve seen.
7.62x54R…good round, I have both a Mosin sniper, a Vepr 54R DMR by Black Horse Armory a PSL by Romak and a Dragunov. Ballistically its right about where the 30.06 is and ammo is very cheap to buy in bulk. For best results you might want to load your own.
The best Milsurp 54R ammo is the Soviet 7n1 sniper ammo but is very scarce now. For the Mosin any ammo is fine and you can handle bullets up to about 200 grains in weight for the semi auto stuff like the PSL, Dragunov and Vepr you will want to stick to bullets that are about 148 grains or you will hammer the receiver from the recoil.
The best Milsurp 148 grain ammo currently available is the Bulgarian silver tip, the Warsaw Pact color coded their ammo for various uses, in the 54R your 2 main choices are yellow band and silver band. Yellow band is meant for squad machine guns, they use a heavier bullet for increased recoil to help cycle rounds more effectively. The silver tip or band is meant for rifles and won’t punish the rifle.
You can still buy Bulgarian silver tip quite cheap but beware that almost all Warsaw Pact Milsurp ammo is not reloadable. The brass I use for competition shooting with my PSL and Dragunov are from Lapua and its about a buck per brass case. Privi partizan sells a nice 54R round with re loadable brass for about 14 bucks per 20 rounds.
Anyway I’m beginning to pontificate, lol when you get me started on weapons and ammo I could talk or write for hours.
Well this is the issue shooters of the 54R face, the lack of bullets made for the bore. You see the 54R bore is right around .311 to .312 and that’s a bit odd. When faced with reloading and using a modern bullet one can get away with using 308 bullets and it really doesn’t hurt anything.
Many shooters who reload the 54R actually buy milsurp ammo and take the bullet out of the casing, dispense with the powder and just use he bullet in new brass. This allows you to use a Brass casing which is re-loadable, a non corrosive primer and a bullet of the correct diameter.
I know of at least 2 company’s who resell pulled 54R bullets and they run around 50 to 75 bucks per 500 which isn’t bad at all.
Or you can use the 308 bullet which will work and the upside is that there are lots of modern designs and they are still relatively cheap.
As for what do I recommend it depends on what you want to do with it, for good ole plinking and fun id stick with bulgy silver tip, its cheap and accurate. For hunting your going to want a hollow point which is required for legal purposes in most states. There is a new company that is designing a .311 bullet with new ballistic coefficient values that will bring it into the modern era but that’s about a year off.
If we are talking a mosin in a shtf scenario id go with a 200 grain soft point of hollow point. They are reasonably cheap are good for hunting as well as defending yourself, but as mentioned before do not use heavy rounds through a semi auto 54R rifle.
New hobby for me, tired of high priced ammo. Been buying up lead when I find good prices and I am getting bullet molds for my 9mm, 00 buckshot, and maybe #4 shot for hunting. Might get one for the 7.62x54r too once I figure out the best alloy
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