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Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:16 am
by kraggman
Picked up a Carcano Cavalry Carbine. Disassembled, cleaned and function tested. Took it to the range and shot from 50 yds. Nothing on paper. 25yds, one of six on paper. Keyholed.
10 yds, three of six on paper. Two keyholed.
Used the PPU ammo. Mic'd the bullets beforehand and measured .264. Looks like the old bullet being to small deal huh ??
Gonna reload anyway. Ordered Hornady bullets from Graf's. I'll reuse the PPU brass.
Ugly results:
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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:05 am
by Hammerdown
IIRC the Italians used a bullet around .268" so if you are micing the bullets in the ammo at .264" then that would explain the key holing. Lets see some pictures of the rifle....don't be a tease. :D

Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:43 am
by kraggman
As requested ....

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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:58 am
by indy1919a4
Darn nice looking rifle

Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 10:28 am
by retread12345678
NO EXPERT I have no experience with the Italian rifles........ That said, I seem to recall something called " gain twist rifling on some modes. The theory being to speed up the bullet velocity, the last 4 or 5 inches of the bore were given an increased twist For all I know this is an old Italian wives tale But it may , and I say may, have an effect on your
accuracy

Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:26 pm
by PennsylvaniaRifleman
Definitely an undersized bullet issue. Not unusual with the PRVI factory loads (ok in some rifles, others not). Welcome to the frustrating, challenging, yet rewarding world of Carcanos!


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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:01 am
by kraggman
All good comments. Gonna disassemble the PPU rounds and replace the bullets. Then give it another whirl.


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Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 2:55 pm
by kraggman
Interesting results from the PPU so called Carcano 6.5 factory rounds. Pulled down 20 rounds. PPU has crappy QC. Bullet diameters were .2625, way small. Plus the weights were all over the place. Lowest was 139.7 and highest was 141.1 !! Bad. They are sold as 139. Just for extra info, the average powder charge was 42.2. Now I see why the keyholing. The Italians used a .268 bullet, as opposed to the PPU .2625. Huge difference in our world. Gonna reload with Hornady .267/160 RN with reduced charge. I'll post results if anyone is interested.


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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:22 pm
by Hammerdown
Nice rifle, bad ammo to the point of getting a refund from PPU on ammo that out of spec's.
So if you fire a round with the bayonet deployed do you think one would ricochet off it tumbling that bad. :doh:

Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:37 pm
by kraggman
Agree. That ammo is actually dangerous. Who knows where the hell the bullets are going.


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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 11:43 pm
by les1234
Kraggman, my understanding is that the 268 bullets must ONLY be used with the powders and charges worked up by Hornady to go with them, they should not be used with any other loads meant for .264 bullets!

Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 12:41 am
by kraggman
Thanks for the heads up les. I'll be sure to do my homework.


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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:08 am
by vandle
retread12345678 wrote:
Fri Jul 14, 2017 10:28 am
NO EXPERT I have no experience with the Italian rifles........ That said, I seem to recall something called " gain twist rifling on some modes. The theory being to speed up the bullet velocity, the last 4 or 5 inches of the bore were given an increased twist For all I know this is an old Italian wives tale But it may , and I say may, have an effect on your
accuracy
91/38 Cavalry carbines did not have the gain twist like the earlier rifles.
It definitely a bullet diameter issue.

Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 2:35 pm
by kraggman
Little update. Have everything I need to try some test loads. The Hornady bullets mic'd at exactly .268. Looks promising. And the Lee dies came with an extra expander for those bullets. Going with BL-C(2) powder. Just happened to have some.In the pic below, the bullet on right is pulled PPU (.2625). Bullet on left is Hornady (.268).
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Re: Cavalry Carbine Issue

Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:28 pm
by kraggman
For all interested. Shot handloads today. What a difference. Tried three different powder weights, heaviest worked best. May up that load slightly next time. But results were good. No keyholing, so bullets are correct for this gun.
Load info:
PPU brass
Hornady 160 gr RN
.267 diameter
Hodgdon Powder
BL-C (2)
29 gr
The six shots to the top left were with the 29 gr load. Couldn't adjust the front blade, had no tool. Thus the left orientation. Just looking at grouping and lack of keyhole's. I'll fix the blade when I get a chance.

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