Norinco 7.62x39 Ammo & Burris scope Question. - Shooting Sports Forum


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Old 05-16-2011, 13:16   #1
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Norinco 7.62x39 Ammo & Burris scope Question.

Wish I would have found this site before I acquired a new (2011 model) Ruger Mini 30 (#5853). I say that because I wasn't aware that I would be unable (shouldn't) use the steel cased, Berdan primed, 7.62x39 ammo that I have a goodly amount of. I bought a lot of this back in the 90's when it was very cheap, about 10 cents a round. Some Romanian made Match in sealed tins of 700 rds., Some Russian made LTC sold By Centerfire Systems, some newer black box Wolf, & lots of Chinese made Norinco. I know from reading lots of posts here that steel case, Berdan primed, ammo isn't good for my Mini-30, especially the firing pin breakage issue. I'm assuming that the Chinese Norinco is as bad a the Russian made stuff. Is that correct?
I did order some brass cased, Boxer primed, Fiocchi from Able's today as they had the best price I could find at present time. I'll use that to break-in my new Mini. Most of my shooting is tin can blasting at an old gravel pit. I don't intend to use the Mini as my primary hunting rifle.
I do have a couple Russian made SKS's that I can use my existing stash in.
This is my first post as a "newbie". Is there any other info., advice, suggestions any of you fellow Mini-30 owners can provide. Any & all input will be appreciated.
I do plan to buy one of the black nylon slings offered by Cheaper Than Dirt that several posts here have recommended. I also plan to buy a scope as my older (60's) eyes need a little help at a 100 yds. Most of my shooting will not be beyond 150 yds. (at the most) so I can use any recommendations on a scope. I have read some good things about the Burris Fullfield Tactical, 2-7x35mm (#200129). Would that be a good choice?
Sorry for the lengthy post but this is my first one & I got lots of questions for fellow, experienced, Mini-30 owners like yourselves. Thanks.
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Old 05-16-2011, 13:54   #2
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Early copper-washed Norinco, marked "72" is Chinese military surplus, probably corrosive and has a steel core bullet, which is forbidden at most all gun ranges. Save it for SHTF for your SKS...and clean it up with water afterward. BTW, that stuff is noticeably more accurate, at least in my AKs.

I would recommend shooting only brass cased, boxer primed Winchester WB, PMC, Lapua, or Fiocchi...it should save you grief (and your firing pin) down the road.

Burris makes solid scopes. They are even strong enough for pellet rifles. I currently have a 4X Burris mounted on my Mini-30 right now.

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Old 05-16-2011, 14:12   #3
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welcome pharmer

welcome to the Forum pharmer.
yes all the chinese berdan primed is corro-primed and steel cased. I have had success w/it in my 189 series but I won't recoommend it and it's no longer imported - thanks to 'billary'
I have the Burris glass you mention mounted - I an disappointed that the rangeing mil-dots are not very distinctly marked.
regarding brass cased ammo right now the best price is for Yugo - but it is corro-primed albeit mildy so.
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Old 05-16-2011, 14:20   #4
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m1Key, Thanks for the response & info. The Norinco I have is headstamped with a 351 & a 92. The blue & white cardboard box says "steel cases-non-corrosive Berdan primers. So I guess corrosion might not be a problem but the Berdan primer design might harm the Ruger firing pin. If Ruger had installed a "harder" (metallurgically speaking) firing pin, would that have enabled Mini-30 owners to use the Berdan primer ammo?
Glad to hear that you speak highly of the Burris branded scopes. Who would have the best prices on a Burris & will the Ruger factory rings that come with the Mini be adequate? Thanks again.
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Old 05-16-2011, 14:24   #5
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Marlin45, Thanks for the welcome. Since you're an owner of a Burris #200129 & a little bit disappointed with it, is there an alternative scope you would recommend? There's such a vast array of scopes available that it's hard to narrow down the choices for my Mini-30.
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Old 05-16-2011, 14:36   #6
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Originally Posted by pharmerphil View Post
m1Key, Thanks for the response & info. The Norinco I have is headstamped with a 351 & a 92. The blue & white cardboard box says "steel cases-non-corrosive Berdan primers. So I guess corrosion might not be a problem but the Berdan primer design might harm the Ruger firing pin. If Ruger had installed a "harder" (metallurgically speaking) firing pin, would that have enabled Mini-30 owners to use the Berdan primer ammo?
Glad to hear that you speak highly of the Burris branded scopes. Who would have the best prices on a Burris & will the Ruger factory rings that come with the Mini be adequate? Thanks again.
Ruger used to endorse steel, berdan-primed ammo, but they no longer do probably because of the FP problems. Aftermarket pins are "iffy" and not up to OEM standards, apparently.

A lot of M30 owners shoot steel stuff anyway figuring if the pin breaks, Ruger will fix. Not what I would do with anything but a "fun" gun.

Ruger rings are fine, make sure your "scallops" on the receiver are adequately cut and the rings/scope mount straight and solid.

Shop around for sales on Burris scopes, pick one that is handiest for your needs. I prefer the compact versions...


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Old 05-16-2011, 16:39   #7
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Welcome Pharmer! I believe in good glass.... I have a Leupold on my M-30 and love it. The VX-II 2-7x33 with the LR Duplex is in my opinion the perfect match with the Mini-30. Its compact, light, has great glass, a great warranty, is made in USA, and the LR duplex will help the little x39 cartridge if you want to stretch the range a little, IMO
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Old 05-16-2011, 20:02   #8
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Originally Posted by pharmerphil View Post
Marlin45, Thanks for the welcome. Since you're an owner of a Burris #200129 & a little bit disappointed with it, is there an alternative scope you would recommend? There's such a vast array of scopes available that it's hard to narrow down the choices for my Mini-30.
I have the exact scope you mentioned - the picture is really clear and the crosshairs sharp but the rangeing marks are sort of small and faint. on a dark background they don't stand out clearly enuff to suit me. due to the crystal clear picture I opted to keep the scope anyway though. Burris is rugged made for sure.
I consider the max range of my M30 to be effective aimed fire at 300yds and I can use 'guesstimation' with the range marks well enuff to do the job.
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Old 05-16-2011, 20:48   #9
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Originally Posted by m1key View Post
Early copper-washed Norinco, marked "72" is Chinese military surplus, probably corrosive and has a steel core bullet, which is forbidden at most all gun ranges. Save it for SHTF for your SKS...and clean it up with water afterward. BTW, that stuff is noticeably more accurate, at least in my AKs. M
You've confirmed something I experienced years ago. I found some lots of the early Chinese ammo to be much more accurate in my beat up SKS (one of the first imported and definitely carried and banged around a lot). The early Yugo was okay and the Russian was so-so in terms of accuracy but the Chinese stuff with the steel-core bullets shot very well. I know someone who has a bunch of it but he is a dealer and cannot legally sell it anymore. It's his plinking stash.

YMMV

PS: Re: Firing pin breakage - I don't understand why some pins break and others go for thousands of rounds. IMHO opinion there is either inconsistent heat treatment of the pins or some are simply too long or otherwise dimensionally challenged.
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Old 05-16-2011, 22:06   #10
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Hi Pharmer, welcome to the group. On currently available ammo, these work well for me, Yugo surplus brass case, Silver Bear softpoints, S & B brass/boxer. The velocity and recoil on the S &B is lower. Older ammo (Gunshow pickup, not available on storeshelves - Chinese copperwash (steelcore), PMC brass/boxer softpoints. The Following absolutely do not work on my New Model M-30 - Chinese Norinco (Brown steel case), Wolf (any), Russian (any). There are many other non-currently available (mostly eastern european) made that I either shot up years ago with an sks, or that I never owned (Romanian, Chekz, East German, ect. ) Others that I have not tried because of cost that I have heard works well is any US made, brass/boxer (Win white box, Federal,ect)

Scopes - Nikon prostaff 2x7 has been a great performer for me. I am currently using an older burris 2x7 matte fullfield which also serves me well. I am not into real high dollar stuff, but I will go up to $200 for good glass with a very good reputation. A great scope for the top of my budjet is the Bushnell 3200 elite. I have not tried on the M-30, but I may put it on the 14 because of the longer range capability of the .223/5.56 ammo. I have had good luck in the last 5 years or so with anything Bushnell. I have on the other hand never had a Simmons budjet scope that was worth a damn. My 2c.
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:46   #11
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I like you wished that I had know my brand new Mini 30 wasn't going to like most of my stash of Berdan primed ammo , but I did find that my Tulammo works just fine and so does my Silver Bear and I have a lot of both of those.

It also likes , Fiocchi , Remington and Hornady , and I am finding the more I shoot it the more it will shoot of the Berdan.

Still I had a hard time deciding between the Mini 30 and the Mini 14. I went with the KMini Thirty P/20 5853.

But I wish I had gone with the M-14/20CF 5.56mm NATO/.223

I based my decision on the fact that I had 6 other 7.62 x 39mm rifles

Anyone want to trade.
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Old 05-17-2011, 15:11   #12
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suitable ammo for the M30

some threads already posted with likes/dislikes of ammo performance by make in the M30.
about the best deal going now is the Yugo mil-surp brass cased berdan primed and mildly coorosive. shoots good and is a breeze to clean up after shooting, bring out the windex w/ammonia (which nuetralizes the coorosive residue) and spray/scrub/wipe good.
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Old 05-17-2011, 15:44   #13
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Copper Washed Norinco. Use or Don't Use?

I've read all the threads back to me about my questions concerning ammo & scope. Lots of good info. & advice. I'm still unclear about whether or not I should attempt to fire the older copper-washed Norinco ammo that I have on hand. I know it's Berdan primed, says non-corrosive on box, but several of the posts say that the Yugo brass-cased shells are okay to use & they also have the Berdan primers. I just don't want to mess up my new #5853 or possibly break the firing pin. I got several thousand rounds of the Norinco which I would like to try in the Mini. If it's a definite no-no to do so, I'll just use them in the SKS's. Thanks again for everyone's answers back to me about my post.
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Old 05-17-2011, 23:10   #14
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I gave my Norinko sks ($88.00 in 1993, NIB) and a bunch of Wolf ammo to my dau ahead of my post 08 election purchase.

I bought my 581 series Mini 30 because of it's X39 abilities.........heh, I traded away the
rest of my wolf ammo a week later.

I shoot some sellier bellot and the rest is all fiocchi. I have a little "sp" for the Blacktail
hunting.

I still poke around for ideas, thx for the info.
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