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Ammo Evaluation: Romanian 8mm Mauser

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Towards the end of the Cold War, Romania was a major exporter of arms and ammunition on the world market. Today we are looking at Romanian pattern 1971 8mm Mauser ammunition, made between 1972 and 1978 (this particular sample is form 1972). It was produced at the U.M. Sadu plant in Bumbesti Jiu, Romania. At the time of production, Romania had no 8mm Mauser firearms in active military service, suggesting that this ammunition was made for export (or perhaps a planned weapon which never actually saw adoption). Interestingly, the cases across the entire production run of this ammo are about 1mm shorter than standard 8mm Mauser, measuring closer to 56mm than 57mm. The shoulder is in the proper location, and this slightly short neck does not appear to produce any abnormal effects, either positive or negative.

The ammunition is packed in wooden crates, each containing two sealed tins. It was packaged both loose in boxes (20 rounds per box, 380 rounds per tin, 760 rounds per crate) and also on 5-round Mauser stripper clips (15 rounds per box, 340 rounds per tin, 680 rounds per crate). This particular sample is packaged loose.


I tested velocity using an 8mm Kar98k Mauser rifle (barrel length 23.6 inches). Measurements were taken at 10 feet from the muzzle, with a sample size of 15 rounds fired. I found an average velocity of 2674 fps, extreme spread of 107 fps (max 2716, min 2609), and standard deviation of 25.75 fps. None of the rounds exhibited any unusual behavior when fired. In my experience outside this specific test, this ammunition has never shown and duds or hangfires.


I tested the weight of 10 bullets using a calibrated Lyman electronic scale. I found an average weight of 154.2 grains, extreme spread of 2.4 grains (max 155.4 gr, min 153.0 gr), and standard deviation of 0.86 grains. Bullet construction is boattail base with an open base, and the bullet attract a magnet.

The primers are Berdan and corrosive. The cases are lacquered steel.

Raw data:

Velocities (fps): 2671, 2664, 2677, 2654, 2609, 2695, 2698, 2668, 2688, 2678, 2639, 2688, 2716, 2701, 2669

Bullet weights (grains): 153.8, 155.4, 154.8, 153.3, 154.0, 155.0, 153.0, 153.1, 155.3, 154.1

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