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GUNS Magazine September 2010 - Page 35
chambered for .223 Remington only and NATO-spec ammo should not be fired. One telltale sign your gun isn’t chambered correctly (and sadly, some AR makers have put .223 Remington chambered barrels on receivers marked “5.56mm”) is there will be some gas leakage around the primer pockets and the primer pockets might be enlarged, ruining the case for reloading. You mentioned in the June Q&A 5.56mm NATO barrels have a longer throat than .223 Remington barrels, but you did not say as to whether or not this was the case with 7.62mm NATO barrels vs. those barrels chambered in .308 Winchester. Also, you said modern bolt-action rifles would handle either 30-caliber cartridge safely, but you did not say as to whether or not military surplus bolt-action rifles chambered in 7.62mm NATO, such as Enfield and Mauser rifles, could safely handle the apparently higher pressure .308 Winchester commercial cartridge. Paul Young Detroit, Michigan Not all military rifles are made the same. Some are at the limit of their strength when converted, such as Spanish 1893 Mausers converted to 7.62mm NATO and rear-locking lugs rifles such as the Enfield. In this case it’s not the throat of the chamber, but the fact the maximum average chamber pressure is much higher in commercial .308 Winchester than in 7.62mm NATO ammunition. Many K98 Mausers were converted to 7.62mm NATO, and these would have the inherent strength to handle .308 Winchester. Personally, were I buying a K98—either a military conversion or a sporterized rifle—I would stay away from rifles made in the last part of the war. In fact, I make it a rule never to shoot any gun made by the losing side in the last year or so of a war. Never assume anything, and have the headspace checked by a competent gunsmith before firing. Our Caps Will NOT Scratch Your Scope Or Rust has taken Weaver® style rings to new heights and new lengths KWIK-SITE Q: More On 7.62mm NATO • Jeff John • Q: Am I missing something here? Did Jeff really mean to recommend Lee Factory Crimp the Lee Factory Crimp die for use with the .45 ACP round? I’ve run loaded rounds that wouldn’t chamber through a full-length sizing, or even taper crimp die, but wouldn’t the factory crimp die only constrict the very mouth of the case endangering headspacing ability and doing nothing for the lower bulge? Rob Crosby Maine The Lee Factory Crimp die for straight wall pistol and revolver cases has a carbide ring at the base and a taper crimp at the top, thus, it sizes the case again—if it needs it—as it crimps. Other Factory Crimp dies, such as the ones for the .30-30 or .44-40, put a ring crimp around the case to help keep bullets from telescoping back into the case. In rounds like the .30-06, the Factory Crimp Die can crimp bullets that don’t have cannelures when you need the bullet to stay in place. A: A: More On .223 Chambers I am so confused. Jeff says “don’t shoot 5.56 in a .223” and I believe him. He gives convincing reasons. Then, Justin Carroll in his Quartermaster segment on Ruger mags for the Mini-14 tells how he shot a variety of .223 Remington and 5.56 ammunition in his Mini-14 circa 1985. My Mini-14 says “.223 Remington” caliber. I’ve kind of always mixed and matched and have seen no ill effects. What is “best practice”? R. F. Williams via e-mail Q: A: The Ruger Mini-14 has always been chambered to accept WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM 5.56 NATO—with one exception. The recent Mini-14 Target Model with the harmonic barrel dampener is Due to the volume of mail received, GUNS cannot offer a personal reply. Please e-mail your question to ed@ gunsmagazine.com or snail mail to: GUNS Q&A, 12345 World Trade Drive, San Diego, CA 92128 Questions and Answers Leading U.S. Manufacturer of Scope Mounts Since 1967 35