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deeangeo
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Reged: 09/05/15
Posts: 179
Loc: United Kingdom
Getting No-where!!
      #303758 - 06/08/17 07:14 PM

I've been trying to get some sort of sensible performance out of my MSch M1903 Takedown for a good while now. The rifle is 1922 proof date and I wasn't expecting anything exceptional in terms of groups.
But, I cannot get any kind of consistency at all using the Hornady #2640 160gn RN bullet, nor from the 140gn SST.

I was hoping for at least 2" @ 100yds consistency, but NO! Not a chance. At first I thought so, but no, it's just not happening. I maybe get three within 2-2 1/2" then flyers out to 4 & 5" away.

So I've checked the rifle thoroughly and the scope and the iron sights and cannot find anything obviously wrong.
The bore, while worn, is clean & clear still showing reasonable rifling and it's neither pitted nor rusted. The crown looked somewhat dubious, but not ridiculous, but I thought what the hell & had it recrowned last week. So now it's sharp and clear.

I had the idea maybe more 'bite' between bullet and lands might help and measured the Hornady 160gn bullets @ .258" not the .264" I'd expected to see.
Now I notice the Hornady Carcano bullet is listed at .267" so I'd expect it's real life diameter to be .006" less @ .261" if it follows the #2640 bullet dimension pattern.

Is it too much of a risk to try it?
While I have an idea how to slug a barrel, I've never done it and don't know any gunsmith within striking distance of me who has, so what to do???
All suggestions welcome ..
Other than that, the rifle goes into my cupboard and I get on with a different project, forgetting completely that this one is un-huntable and just a nice piece of engineering .. or, re-barrel?????

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Louis
.300 member


Reged: 13/05/15
Posts: 124
Loc: France
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #303762 - 06/08/17 10:04 PM

Deeangeo. Why not starting by testing your rifle with factory CIP ammunition in order to assess whether it's your MS 1903 or your reloading that are the cause for the lack of accuracy? The obvious choice for factory 6,5x54 MS in the UK would obviously be Kynoch, however in continental Europe www.cartouches-sologne.fr (France) and www.waffen-dorfner.at (Austria) also manufacture 6,5x54MS, providing that you could find an importer locally. Louis

--------------------
"Everything that doesn't kill me makes me stronger"


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deeangeo
.300 member


Reged: 09/05/15
Posts: 179
Loc: United Kingdom
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Louis]
      #303773 - 07/08/17 01:01 AM

Hi Louis, yes I already did that using RWS ammunition and it's the same.
Currently I have tried many different propellants, loads and seating depths all made taking great care and using Norma brass.
Nothing is even looking like consistent, it's like a shotgun with a 6" radius of bullet impact @ 100yds.

I have a strong feeling this may well be a re-barrelling situation, but if that's the case, it will be rebarrelled as 6.5x54MSch

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Daryl_S
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Reged: 10/08/05
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #303774 - 07/08/17 01:23 AM

My 6.5 160gr. Hornady RNs are .263" to .2635" & they shoot well from my 6.5x55 and my Daughter's .260 Rem.
Also, shooting REALLY well in my Daughter's .260, are Sierra 160gr. Semi-round nose which measure .2625". These have a VERY long bearing surface and must be seated deeply. The long bearing surface allows or even promotes them to obturate nicely.

--------------------
Daryl


"a rifle without hammers, is like a Spaniel without ears" Edward VII


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deeangeo
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Daryl_S]
      #303781 - 07/08/17 02:17 AM

Thanks Daryl_S
I really am measuring the Hornady #2640 @ .258" +/- .0005" certainly not the.263" you mention and which I expected to see.
I don't have any issues with cases not obturating correctly.

I'm 100% confident my reloads should have shown by now at least something looking half respectable, so, something else is amiss.
Whatever is wrong is not showing in anything to do with scope, mounts or any other obvious aspect of the rifle other than bullet or barrel or both.
Cheers, d

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!

Edited by deeangeo (07/08/17 02:21 AM)


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Wayne59
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Reged: 20/06/15
Posts: 609
Loc: Lagrange Ga. USA
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #303784 - 07/08/17 03:59 AM

I would fire three rounds on one day and keep my target an then the next day fire another three rounds into the same target. It may be that the fact that it is a take down or the barrel profile is thin that are causing your problem.

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xausa
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Reged: 07/03/07
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Wayne59]
      #303787 - 07/08/17 06:20 AM

My experience with M1903 M/S barrels is that they all measure .268" in the grooves. I use nothing but Hornady 160 grain .267" bullets intended for the Mannlicher Carcano.

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deeangeo
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Reged: 09/05/15
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: xausa]
      #303789 - 07/08/17 08:04 AM

Quote:

My experience with M1903 M/S barrels is that they all measure .268" in the grooves. I use nothing but Hornady 160 grain .267" bullets intended for the Mannlicher Carcano.




Now that really is interesting and addresses my original query xausa.
Did you somehow slug your barrel before trying those bullets, or did you just take a flyer & try it?

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Carpetsahib
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Reged: 29/04/07
Posts: 347
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #303793 - 07/08/17 08:39 AM

Quote:

Quote:

My experience with M1903 M/S barrels is that they all measure .268" in the grooves. I use nothing but Hornady 160 grain .267" bullets intended for the Mannlicher Carcano.




Now that really is interesting and addresses my original query xausa.
Did you somehow slug your barrel before trying those bullets, or did you just take a flyer & try it?


I am not Xausa, but I did that very thing on his range with my 1903 T/D rifle. He had loads with both .264 and .267 bullets, and I accidentally tried the .264s first; They keyholed at 50 yards. Then I tried the .267s, and they shot superlatively.

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xausa
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Reged: 07/03/07
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Carpetsahib]
      #303798 - 07/08/17 09:46 AM

If I remember correctly, (and my memory is suspect at my age) I read somewhere that the 1903 barrels took .267" bullets, which is why I planned to try them.

I tried the .264" bullets first, then determined that the .267" bullets would pass easily into the mouth of the fired case, and went with the .267" bullets. I also have a military 1903 which was rebarreled with a .264" barrel, and it, of course, shoots .264" bullets accurately. A cartridge loaded with a .267" bullet will not chamber in that particular rifle, so there's no risk of firing the wrong ammunition it. I have two original 1903's, plus the one Carpetsahib now has, and all shot best with the larger bullets.

Incidentally, I found that Sellier & Bellot factory rounds work well in my rifles, although according to the information published on their web site, they no longer offer ammunition in that caliber.


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2152hq
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Reged: 20/05/12
Posts: 68
Loc: USA
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: xausa]
      #303801 - 07/08/17 11:10 AM

I'd suspect the worn bore is the main problem.

"...The bore, while worn, is clean & clear still showing reasonable rifling..."

Worn is worn and consistant grouping results usually don't come from such rifle bores.

The rifles bedding may also be shifting shot to shot ever so slightly allowing for the lack of grouping to your wishes and the wide flyers.

Just my thoughts,


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deeangeo
.300 member


Reged: 09/05/15
Posts: 179
Loc: United Kingdom
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: 2152hq]
      #303818 - 07/08/17 03:51 PM

Thank you to all for you thoughts on this.
I shall see if I can get hold of some .267 bullets and see what happens. You never know, but it's worth a go.
I have checked and rechecked every other aspect of the rifle and found nothing amiss, so this will be last chance saloon before a major step to move on.
Cheers, d

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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xausa
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #303826 - 08/08/17 12:35 AM

My recommendation would be to try a .267" bullet in the mouth of a case fired in your rifle. If it passes into it freely, then you should have no problem with pressure. Having enough neck clearance is crucial with any rifle.

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Daryl_S
.577 member


Reged: 10/08/05
Posts: 16523
Loc: Beautiful British Columbia, Ca...
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: xausa]
      #303829 - 08/08/17 03:30 AM

Quote:

My recommendation would be to try a .267" bullet in the mouth of a case fired in your rifle. If it passes into it freely, then you should have no problem with pressure. Having enough neck clearance is crucial with any rifle.




exactly

--------------------
Daryl


"a rifle without hammers, is like a Spaniel without ears" Edward VII


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deeangeo
.300 member


Reged: 09/05/15
Posts: 179
Loc: United Kingdom
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Daryl_S]
      #303830 - 08/08/17 04:14 AM

Thanks you guys, the .267 is definitely worth investigation, so I'll do so as soon as I find bullets.
Cheers, d

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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sharps4590
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Reged: 09/03/16
Posts: 88
Loc: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #304167 - 18/08/17 04:26 AM

My 1903, while not a take down, suffered from similar inconsistent accuracy. From the description of your bore, mine sounds about the same. If you have checked these items please disregard the post but, if not, they might be worth taking a look at.

What I discovered on mine was 1), the wood around the less than robust recoil lug was soft, evidently just from age and perhaps an over-exuberant application of oil. 2), the screw for the front sling stirrup was putting a bit of tension on the barrel as the barrel heated.

Remedy was to glass bed the action in the typical manner and drill the hole in the barrel band a size or two larger to allow for expansion. The mortise in the stock for the front sling stirrup lug also showed evidence of the lug rubbing on the bottom as well as back face of the mortise. Those areas were relieved and the rifle now shoots consistent groups hovering slightly above or below 2 inches, (mostly above with my old eyes), benched and bagged with the original open sights.

I chased the demons in that rifle for well over a year before I finally got them all exorcised!!! Now watch something else pop up.

--------------------
Jesus said, "I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me." John14:6

Edited by sharps4590 (18/08/17 04:29 AM)


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deeangeo
.300 member


Reged: 09/05/15
Posts: 179
Loc: United Kingdom
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: sharps4590]
      #304299 - 20/08/17 07:56 AM

Thanks for your thoughts Sharps4590.
In two weeks I travel to Scotland to visit a renowned gunsmith so that he can take a look at the rifle.
He's very familiar with the M1903 and will give me the benefit of his opinion.
I shall decide what to do after that.
May be expensive (very likely) and maybe not (shalln't hold my breath)
But I'll post on here the outcome. .. ..

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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sharps4590
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Reged: 09/03/16
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #304346 - 21/08/17 10:00 PM

Good luck dee...and I hope it isn't expensive!!!

--------------------
Jesus said, "I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me." John14:6


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Tom_H
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Reged: 13/04/05
Posts: 246
Loc: Southeast, NY
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: sharps4590]
      #304348 - 21/08/17 10:24 PM

Another possibility is that the bore needs to be lapped. I have a Dutch model and found the same accuracy issues. I finally decided to drop a gauge pin down the barrel and found a tight spot 4" down (this was after removing the last .5" of barrel because of its condition.

I still haven't gotten around to lapping but that should solve the problem.

Please follow xausa's advice regarding the bullet fit in a fired case. A tight fit in the neck of a loaded cartridge can be dangerous.

Tom

--------------------
Carbonation without fermentation is tyranny


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deeangeo
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Reged: 09/05/15
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Tom_H]
      #304349 - 21/08/17 10:58 PM

Thanks for your thoughts Tom.
The barrel on my M1903 seems quite good for its 95 years, but there's definitely no shot to shot consistency and I can find nothing relating to metal to wood fixing that indicates a problem.
Hey ho, sometimes a project turns into a real trial!
Cheers, d.

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Carpetsahib
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Reged: 29/04/07
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #304465 - 24/08/17 11:51 PM

Quote:

Thanks for your thoughts Tom.
The barrel on my M1903 seems quite good for its 95 years, but there's definitely no shot to shot consistency and I can find nothing relating to metal to wood fixing that indicates a problem.
Hey ho, sometimes a project turns into a real trial!
Cheers, d.


I tested my Army & Navy CSL 1903 TD yesterday in preparation for hunting season. I fired my original 160 gr. .267" bulleted loads into a nice group centered over the aiming point. This old dog is 112 years old, but it is ready to hunt!

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deeangeo
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Carpetsahib]
      #304471 - 25/08/17 03:32 AM

Brilliant Carpetsahib. I wish mine was, but all in good time eh!

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Carpetsahib
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Reged: 29/04/07
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #304472 - 25/08/17 03:41 AM

Quote:

Brilliant Carpetsahib. I wish mine was, but all in good time eh!


Something interesting about my rifle: there is a little longitudinal play when the muzzle is pressed against a solid object. So it makes me think that the recoil shoulder isn't bearing as it should. Considering the way it is shooting, I will wait until after hunting season to look into it. Also, the condition of the bore is not the best, so a light fire-lapping session may be in order.

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deeangeo
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Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: Carpetsahib]
      #304612 - 30/08/17 04:55 PM

Well, an appointment made to see Callum Ferguson @ https://www.precisionrifles.com
So this coming Saturday, a trip to the Highlands where he lives/works so he can check out my rifle properly.
A two day run with hotel booked near Dalwhinnie.

Discussed potential re-barrel with him and of course he's perfectly able to do it, but wants to see the rifle and know exactly how much 'plumbing' needs to be done .. .. i.e. what do I want.

I'm already aware that commercially it makes no sense to do this, but I do want my M1903 to 'shoot', so I'll find out exactly how hard my wallet is to be hit!

I'd like as much integrity to remain with the rifle as possible and also want to keep the original barrel as 'provenance' so if I can do this I'll be happy.

--------------------
Blaser K95 Luxus Kipplaufbüchse, .25-06 Rem. Zeiss 8x56 & Nosler 110gn Accubond = Game Over!


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Louis
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Reged: 13/05/15
Posts: 124
Loc: France
Re: Getting No-where!! [Re: deeangeo]
      #304615 - 30/08/17 05:31 PM

Best of luck with your project Deeangeo; if our decisions were commercially driven, then our gun racks would probably be almost empty!
Have a dram or two at the Dalwhinnie distillery on our behalf!

--------------------
"Everything that doesn't kill me makes me stronger"


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