Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: M98 Mauser: 1909 Argentine, safe max pressure?

  1. #1
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    10

    M98 Mauser: 1909 Argentine, safe max pressure?

    I have four Mauser 1909 Argentine actions, built by DWM, in excellent condition -- matching bolts, no rust, corrosion, or pitting. I plan to build custom bolt guns with them, but I would like to have some idea of the sorts of maximum pressures that folks have subjected them to. I know that the 1909 Argentine action has been a favorite of custom gunsmiths for decades; none the less, I haven't been able to find any information specific to the maximum pressure it should be subjected to.

    The 1909 Argentine rifle was originally chambered for the 7.65x53 Argentine (and other names, but they're all the same round), which is listed as having a maximum pressure of 56,565 psi. Many 1909 Argentines were rechambered for .30-06, and have been none the worse for wear after shooting that round for decades now. And the 30-06 has a maximum pressure of 60,200 psi. So it would appear, based on real-world, empirical data, that the 1909 Argy can handle 60,000 psi without difficulties. But how much beyond that is safe, I wonder?

    Accurate powders offers their Load Data manual as a downloadable .pdf file, which I've d/l'd. One thing I like about the layout of their load data is every single load they recommend shows its associated chamber pressure. I've noticed, just from browsing their listings, that if I use 60,000 psi as a safe ceiling, I actually have a choice of most of the calibers listed. It's just several of the modern magnums and a few specialized loads for more common calibers that seem to exceed the 60,000 level, and then not by all that much. The most powerful load I came across was less than 65,000 psi. And something tells me that the old 1909 Argy will handle 65k as easily as it will handle 60k. But should I push it? I'm sure others have, and I'd just as soon learn from their results and mistakes. Any takers?

    In case you're not familiar with the 1909 Argentine, it is a standard large-ring military M98 Mauser, built by DWM, but I'm not sure when. The reason for the 1909's popularity amongst custom gunsmiths was at least partially due to the fact that it has a hinged floor plate. Other factors, I'm sure, are all the features inherent in the M98 design, as well as the standard bolt length, and general high-level of craftsmanship coming out of the DWM works back then.
    Best,
    Michael

  2. #2
    Forum Administrator Schuetzenman's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    East of Atlanta GA
    Posts
    15,015
    I seem to recall they are Large Ring Mauser receivers. http://edlapourgunsmithing.com/custo...-m98-mauser-2/ Link to a custom smith that chambered one in 9.3x62, that round is 57,000 psi rated. Too bad they are only receivers, as a complete 1909 if in VG or better shape they'd be worth something to C&R collectors. Building a modern sporting rifle on old Mauser actions is always a money pit. Very difficult to get your money back out of a project rifle unless the maker can do something outstanding to it, like engraving or high end stock work and engraving. As a utility hunting grade weapon more money will be spent setting it up than it could be sold for later.

  3. #3
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    10
    Appreciate the feedback, Schuetzenman. And I'm aware of the "perils" of building a custom gun on a milsurp action these days. Don't really understand it, though, since good quality commercial bolt actions are so expensive nowadays. If I were building these guns to sell them, I think that a price point somewhere between what a good commercial rifle goes for and a nice custom goes for would work. Seems to me there is a lot of room between several hundred and several thousand dollars to make a few coins on the deal.

    But right now, I have no plans to build the guns to sell them. Maybe some day. I used to hold an FFL and have thought about getting another, so I could do some gunsmithing, but even though I have a nice little shop behind my house, I can't do it out of my house because of deed restrictions and I don't have the finances right now to rent a shop space. So there is no plans to sell them. But I can still put them together if I want.

    I'm also a custom guitar builder. I build guitars from base materials, not kits. So the idea of building gunstocks has been intriguing me lately. I've never done one from scratch, but I have inletted, finish-shaped, and modified several. To me, this sort of woodworking is fun. And one of the main reasons for my building my own boltguns will be to make my own stocks. And if I'm gonna go to the trouble of making a stock from scratch, I'm not gonna use cheap wood. I will use the best wood I can afford and follow it up with a good checkering job. I believe such quality woodworking can add greatly to the value of a firearm, so that if I do choose to sell one or more some day, I will be able to see a substantial return on my labors.

    But before any of this takes place, I'm still interested in finding out more about different chamberings for the 1909 (hence, max pressures).
    Last edited by cooltouch; 02-08-2013 at 12:36 AM.
    Best,
    Michael

  4. #4
    Forum Administrator Schuetzenman's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    East of Atlanta GA
    Posts
    15,015
    Former FFL license holder here as well and I've built a lot of wood stocked rifles over the years, primarily custom muzzle loading rifles where the rifle build is all about the stock. Done checkering, done engraving, cold rust bluing and browning finishes. Stock work takes a lot of time and patience to do it right, but it can be very satisfying as a hobby. I can see it as a natural extension of your Guitar making, something I've never done. Good luck with the projects.

  5. #5
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    10
    Heh, well, metal engraving is something I've never done. Always felt sort of intimidated by it, I guess. To me, building guitars seems a whole lot easier.
    Best,
    Michael

  6. #6
    Senior Member binky59's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Rochester, New York, United States, Rochester, New York
    Posts
    699
    I was trying to find the maximum pressure my 1931 type 93 Mauser was rated at.
    best I could find for 7mm x 57 was 57,000 lbs, but they are tested to 100,000. I'm
    shooting 300 win mag at around that same pressure with no problem.
    Just me and my monkey....

  7. #7
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    10
    I found close to the same rating for the 7x57 as you did. BTW, the Accurate Powders .pdf I was referring to can be found here:

    http://www.accuratepowder.com/wp-con...d_data_3.5.pdf

    I'm sure there are others that are just as useful, it's just that this one is literally the first one I found (A is for Accurate ) when googling the topic. I've never used Accurate powders myself. I've used some Winchester ball stuff for my .223, which seems to like it, but all my other loads have been with IMR powders. 4064, 4350, 4895, etc. I have an old Hornady set of manuals I'm partial to, but it's about 20 years out of date now.

    Looking at Accurate's Load Data, the 300 Win Mag is one of those cartridges for which most of the max loads shown are above 60,000 psi. Most of the magnum calibers are like that, but not all, and even some non mag-calibers are.

    I was reading a similar thread on another site, searching for max pressure data for the 7x57mm Ackley Improved, when I read the way one fellow judges pressure signs with his M98 Mauser. He judges things based on bolt lift difficulty. Hmmm . . . I have a few M98s and all are cock-on-opening, so none of them have exactly easy bolt lifts. But I suppose that if one is used to exerting a certain level of force to open the bolt, then one can tell when it's more difficult than usual. He also mentions noticing the increase in bolt lift difficulty in one instance after adding as little as an extra half grain of powder to the case.

    The more I'm reading on the topic, the more I'm coming to the conclusion that, for a well-made, large-ring, M98 action in good condition, there just isn't much to be concerned about when it comes to chamber pressures. The first rifle I'll be building off one of these 1909 actions will be chambered in the aforementioned 7x57mm AI, so of course I've been curious about this cartridge's max pressure rating. I couldn't find anything official, obviously, since it's a wildcat. But what I've gotten so far, based on internet searches, is that the 7mm AI is equivalent to the 270 Winchester in terms of chamber pressures. If this is in fact the case, then a 7x57 AI is experiencing modern chamber pressures, exceeding 60,000 psi (A 270's is typically in the 60,000 to 64,000 psi range). Now, something is telling me at this point that there's probably been oh, half a bazillion, maybe three-quarters of a bazillion surplus "sporterized" (read cheap) M98 Mauser rifles chambered in .270 Winchester, and I wonder how many of those surplus M98 actions couldn't handle the pressures caused by a .270? Yep, none, I'm guessing. So, given that reasonable conclusion to draw, I've decided I can stop worrying about it. Of course, one should always closely inspect ones surplus action for flaws, cracks, excessive corrosion or pitting, etc. And perhaps some made at certain factories during certain time frames maybe should be shied away from. But the 1909s, which I am fortunate enough to own, are the good stuff -- coming from DWM when they were world-renowned for the quality of their construction.

    Still, I don't see myself building any super-hot magnum bolt guns with these actions. The caliber will be important, but its history will be just as important to me as its velocity. I'm thinking I should be able to find some interesting choices with reasonable pressure numbers.
    Best,
    Michael

  8. #8
    Forum Administrator Schuetzenman's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    East of Atlanta GA
    Posts
    15,015
    Yes IMO a large ring German made Mauser action can handle about anything you can toss at it short of .50 bmg. On Accurate powders, I've used a lot of them and they are quality powders at less cost. I've used an 8 lb. jug of AA2230 and it worked ok for .223. I prefer Varget for .223 and the 69 to 77gr. wt. bullets. The A2460 is a slower version of 2230 so it works better with the heavier .224" bullets. They also make a 4064 and a 4350 that are equivalents to the IMR versions but at a lower price.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •