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  #1  
Old 02-12-2014, 2:02 PM
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Default G43 converted to 30-06

Started in another thread, moving to its own thread.

My grandfather has a G43 from the late '50s that was converted from 8mm to 30-06. My Uncles shot it back in the 1960's; said it shot great. But they do not know when/where the conversion was done.

How would it get converted to 30-06? sleeve the barrel, and the chamber? How would I tell? 30-06 case dimensions are significantly different, as are bullet diameter.

Asked at a gunshow where I saw one; guy claimed that original in ok shape it's a $1k rifle, converted to 30-06 maybe $100 or parts gun...
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Old 02-12-2014, 2:30 PM
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Post some pictures, photograph close ups of the barrel markings/chamber and any other markings you can find - including a wide of the whole rifle including stock - and many of your questions will be answered in short order.
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Old 02-12-2014, 2:49 PM
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It would have been major surgery to convert the barrel from 8mm to 30cal. Back in the late 50's and early '60s 8x57 ammo was not real available, especially in hunting loads. A lot of 8x57 guns were converted to 8mm-06 by simply running the 30-06 finish reamer into the existing 8x57 chamber. The dies are still available:

http://www.hornady.com/store/8mm-06-.323-2-Die-Set/


Brass was super easy, just run the '06 through the resize die. I'm going to guess this is actually what you have.
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:13 PM
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And you don't ask at a gun show how much something is worth. The magazine alone is worth more than $100.
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:22 PM
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Yeah $100 sounds way too low. Even a bubba'd Mosin can get a bit more than $100. Its a rare gun in working condition & it fires a commonly available round. Obviously not as valuable as an intact specimen, but it still has value.
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptoguy2002 View Post
And you don't ask at a gun show how much something is worth. The magazine alone is worth more than $100.
I be that guy was going to cut you a deal and give you $150 for it...
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:31 PM
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I had posted this in another thread; consolidating... i'll try to get pictures tonite.

I do not know what work was done on it; my Uncles do not remember. The barrel looks to match the overall patina and machining of the rest of the rifle. It did have a recoil pad put on. Uncles said they think Grandpa got it late 50's, maybe very early 1960's.

I have wondered if barrel was sleeved. As for the chamber, 30-06 is longer but smaller diameter case. Maybe sleeve and reamed?

It is stamped 30-06; it looks like a mark might have been ground off and then stamped.

I had a gunsmith check it out a couple years ago. He said it was fireable condition, gauged the chamber, tested fired it two rounds factory 30-06. It functions. He also said, it was a $100 wall hangar/shooter.

But... I did not think at the time, to ask about details; just that it was safe and operating properly.
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:39 PM
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Quote:
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I be that guy was going to cut you a deal and give you $150 for it...
Curse you Gutter! I raise you $160!!!
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Old 02-12-2014, 3:57 PM
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Yes, I took the info with a grain of salt...

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And you don't ask at a gun show how much something is worth. The magazine alone is worth more than $100.
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Old 02-12-2014, 4:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RNE228 View Post
I had posted this in another thread; consolidating... i'll try to get pictures tonite.

I do not know what work was done on it; my Uncles do not remember. The barrel looks to match the overall patina and machining of the rest of the rifle. It did have a recoil pad put on. Uncles said they think Grandpa got it late 50's, maybe very early 1960's.

I have wondered if barrel was sleeved. As for the chamber, 30-06 is longer but smaller diameter case. Maybe sleeve and reamed?

It is stamped 30-06; it looks like a mark might have been ground off and then stamped.

I had a gunsmith check it out a couple years ago. He said it was fireable condition, gauged the chamber, tested fired it two rounds factory 30-06. It functions. He also said, it was a $100 wall hangar/shooter.

But... I did not think at the time, to ask about details; just that it was safe and operating properly.
You can certainly fire a 30-06 round in an 8mm-06 chambered gun, just not to accurate and not to good for longevity of the bore. I would suggest you slug the barrel and maybe do a chamber cast as well, then you will know exactly what you have got. By the way, I'll raise the bid to $170.
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Old 02-12-2014, 6:50 PM
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Original G43 for $1000? That should be your first clue. A just "OK" original G43 is at least a $3000 rifle. The guy is a dweeb.

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Old 02-12-2014, 7:01 PM
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In his defense - doubtful they come through his gun-shop often and the G43 prices have risen disproportionately in the last ten years.

Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers, Medal of Honor - who knows what happened - maybe it is more morbid and sad - the greatest generation are vanishing daily, so these have been coming onto the market where they were not, and collectors appearing where they were not.

Regardless we here at Calguns are doing our best to take care of the flood of sad, unloved firearms by giving them good caring homes.
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Old 02-12-2014, 7:24 PM
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As an aside Argentina made a copy of the G43 engineered to 30 06 dimensions as the receiver had to be longer. I don't recall the exact date of this project but some of the rifles came this way about 25 years ago. You can see right away the investment casting for the receiver is distinct as is the magazine.

Photos and clear not fuzzy cell phone pictures will go a very long way to getting an accurate answer.
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Old 02-12-2014, 8:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mj1 View Post
As an aside Argentina made a copy of the G43 engineered to 30 06 dimensions as the receiver had to be longer.
Actually Itajuba in Brazil made a G43 copy in the early 1950's chambered in .30-06 called the "Mg. S/Aut. .30 M954", we bought and sold one back in 2001:



Our price back then was $1750 . . . haven't seen a single other one since.

They do indeed exist.
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Old 02-12-2014, 8:54 PM
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That is the one. Thank you Dennis for straightening out the details I had had sideways. It was a long time ago and the SGN price was, I think, $799 when I first saw one at a Reno show. Argentina had the 7.62X51 FN49 conversions. You can see the magazine and longer receiver in the picture.

......
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Old 02-12-2014, 10:21 PM
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Nice pics, Dennis -

Thank you - that would not be the price now -
Wish my car would increase in value the same way in 13 years.

I think excellent reference books like "Hitler's Garand" have also helped increase up the price of these rifles, too.
Coupled with several well versed websites, helping even the novice, who doesn't want to read books to learn about these interesting rifles.

A 30.06 is going to be appealing to the reenactor who role plays both sides on different weekends, he can use the same blanks.
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Last edited by pitfighter; 02-13-2014 at 8:00 AM..
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  #17  
Old 02-13-2014, 7:10 AM
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Here are some pictures
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File Type: jpg DSCN0219.jpg (100.4 KB, 98 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN0220.jpg (97.0 KB, 85 views)
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Old 02-13-2014, 7:14 AM
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More
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Originally Posted by RNE228 View Post
Here are some pictures
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File Type: jpg DSCN0221.jpg (79.4 KB, 75 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN0222.jpg (94.4 KB, 75 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN0223.jpg (93.5 KB, 74 views)
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Old 02-13-2014, 7:59 AM
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Wonderful late war code - nice.
"i" is Jan 1945 - BLM factory, but others will verify.
Missing front sight protector - unfortunately someone has chopped the stock, to fit a civvie buttplate/shoulder pad -
Shame as I think it should have a late war "flat" metal butt-plate door -

I will start at $1700 or so, as a guess, based on what I would pay - but someone wanting that code might go more.
The hurt stock could be repaired and restored, not sure about the caliber change.
(I had an all matching with sling, repro sight and mount, that sat for six months at $2700 - they don't sell quick above $2K, and there are plenty out there for sale at any one time - no matter what you read.)

Thanks for the pics!
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Old 02-13-2014, 8:15 AM
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Got a pic of where the caliber stamping was ground and changed?
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Old 02-13-2014, 8:22 AM
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I will get more pics tonite; I will be over there and can check it out a little closer. Pics above I had stored, on home computer.

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Got a pic of where the caliber stamping was ground and changed?
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Old 02-13-2014, 8:48 AM
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I knew of this rifle years back, but had not seen it. When Granpa had a massive stroke, he went in hospital, then care home; tube feeding, unable to talk etc. It was really bad stroke. Grandma was legally blind; she came to stay with my parents.

So no one was at the house... Someone broke in about a week after Granpa went in to hospital. Stole odd things like my grandmothers spare dentures, as well as TV, some cash, some jewelry. They left $1000's of dollars in HAM radio though. And, they did not find the rifles(Grandpa had an '03 springfield he claimed he brought back from WWI; he was France during war. But I have not found evidence that they let GI's keep thier service weapons...).

So it has been in family members safe since, except for checkout by local gunsmith.

And, has had two rounds fired since about 1960, by the gunsmith.
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Old 02-13-2014, 11:42 AM
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If you have one, see if a 30 cal bullet goes into the muzzle. A 30 cal bullet in an 8mm muzzle should just slip in almost or barely touching the lands. In a 30 cal muzzle it will only go in to somewhere on the ogive.
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Old 02-13-2014, 8:22 PM
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Muzzle
Muzzle with Nosler 30cal 180gr partition bullet. The bullet would not go in base first. Looks and feels like trying same with 30-06 bolt rifle.
30-06 stamp; barrel looks like it was ground or polished there before the stamp
Chamber

Receiver, bolt, and barrel have same "4957" mark
Grooves appear to be 0.308 on caliper

A sized 30-06 fits easily but snugly in the chamber.
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File Type: jpg DSCN1836.jpg (54.6 KB, 65 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN1828.jpg (90.9 KB, 57 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN1834.jpg (63.0 KB, 66 views)
File Type: jpg DSCN1832.jpg (95.1 KB, 55 views)

Last edited by RNE228; 02-13-2014 at 8:37 PM..
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Old 02-13-2014, 9:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RNE228 View Post
Muzzle
Muzzle with Nosler 30cal 180gr partition bullet. The bullet would not go in base first. Looks and feels like trying same with 30-06 bolt rifle.
30-06 stamp; barrel looks like it was ground or polished there before the stamp
Chamber

Receiver, bolt, and barrel have same "4957" mark
Grooves appear to be 0.308 on caliper

A sized 30-06 fits easily but snugly in the chamber.
Looks like a barrel liner to me, Grandpa had some serious work done on the gun.
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Old 02-13-2014, 10:13 PM
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I don't know if he bought it that way, or had it done. My Uncles do not remember; they were late teens when he got it I think.

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Looks like a barrel liner to me, Grandpa had some serious work done on the gun.
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Old 02-14-2014, 7:56 AM
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I thought barrel liners didn't work for high velocity rifle cartridges over a certain FPS and certainly in the .30-06 range. Something about the liner separating at random places due to the torque of the bullet going down the tube. I'm surprised to see a barrel lined in this caliber.
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:20 AM
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I want one...
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Old 02-15-2014, 1:51 AM
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Do the 30-06 rounds fit into a G43 magazine - 7.92x57 vs 7.62x63?
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Old 02-15-2014, 8:22 AM
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Do the 30-06 rounds fit into a G43 magazine - 7.92x57 vs 7.62x63?

Nope.

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Old 02-15-2014, 9:33 AM
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My hunting rifle is a 30-06 built on a wartime Mauser 98 action (BNZ 43). USGI surplus ammo is too long and will not fit down into the magazine. On the other hand, and not that I have tried a large sampling, but I have yet to find a factory round topped by a hunting bullet that won't go into the magazine. I have no idea how the magazine length spec of the Mauser 98 compares to that of the G43, but I'm going to guess that both being Prussian built it is close to the same. The USGI stuff is produced close to or at the max overall length specification for the '06 of 3.34 inches. This is a "do not exceed" spec and sporting ammo can be shorter. The max overall length spec for the 8mm Mauser is 3.228 inches. I suspect 30-06 ammo within this spec should fit and feed just fine.

One other concern, and I have no information one way or the other on this, is if modern sporting ammo should be used in a G43. I do know not to use the modern stuff in the Garand because the port pressure is too high. If it were my gun I would stick to loads matching the WW2 stuff.
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Old 02-16-2014, 12:11 PM
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All I have loaded is 30-06Ackley Imp, with 180gr Noslers. Filled the magazine; they fit fine.

Quote:
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Do the 30-06 rounds fit into a G43 magazine - 7.92x57 vs 7.62x63?
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Old 02-16-2014, 3:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THBailey View Post
....My hunting rifle is a 30-06 built on a wartime Mauser 98 action (BNZ 43). USGI surplus ammo is too long and will not fit down into the magazine. On the other hand, and not that I have tried a large sampling, but I have yet to find a factory round topped by a hunting bullet that won't go into the magazine.....
The South American Mauser military rifles originally made for 7.65 or 7mm but either reworked to .30 or made new in .30-06 for government issue had a notch milled in the receiver ring to allow the tip of the M2 bullet to clear when using stripper clips. Not that this applies to the G43 question in any way!

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Old 02-17-2014, 9:15 PM
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Link to the G43 made in Brazil. Could it be a mix of parts?
http://claus.espeholt.dk/brazilian_g43.html
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Old 02-19-2014, 12:08 PM
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How is the gas system altered in this rechambered rifle? If 8mm beats the hell out of a regular G43, a steady diet of 30-06 should make short work of a non-altered factory set-up.
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