Handloads: An Easy-Recoiling 8 mm Mauser

posted on April 5, 2022
8 mm Mauser

Most Americans identify it simply as the 8 mm Mauser, but it has also been referred to as 7.92x57 mm Mauser, 8x57 mm Mauser, 8x57 mm JS and 8x57 mm S. To further complicate matters, the 8 mm Mauser and .30-’06 Sprg. were both originally military cartridges similar enough in appearance to cause a mix-up. At least one box of old Winchester Super Speed 8x57 mm Mauser cartridges contained a warning: “8 mm cartridges should not under any circumstances be used in rifles chambered for .30 Govt. ’06 or .30 Govt. ’03 cartridges.” Confusion aside, 8 mm Mauser is one of the most influential cartridges in history—its case is the basis for many cartridges, including 7x57 mm Mauser.

8 mm Mauser specsAmerican factory cartridges are loaded with 170-grain bullets at low pressure to safeguard against the 0.323" bullets being fired in a pre-1905 bore measuring 0.318". Remington Express 170-grain Core-Lokt SP bullets have a stated velocity of 2,360 f.p.s., but the loads registered 1,839 f.p.s. from the 19.75" barrel of a unique 8 mm Mauser-chambered Mannlicher-Schoenauer Model 1908. (The Model 1908 was supposed to have been chambered in only 7x57 mm Mauser and 8x56 mm Mannlicher-Schoenauer.)

Handloads can increase that speed considerably. The Model 1908 fired Hornady 195-grain InterLock SP bullets at 2,448 f.p.s. loaded with 47.0 grains of Varget and 2,514 f.p.s. using 48.0 grains of W748. I settled on the Hornady bullet at 2,271 f.p.s. using 46.0 grains of N150. The slightly slower speed eases recoil from the Model 1908, which weighs slightly more than 6 lbs., and does not make a difference in striking power given the rifle’s aperture rear sight and my aged eyes.


Simeon North Flintlock Pair Commodore Isaac Hull
Simeon North Flintlock Pair Commodore Isaac Hull

Simeon North: First Official U.S. Pistol Maker

Arguably the first official U.S. pistol maker, Simeon North began contracting to the U.S. government with 500 horse pistols in 1798. After subsequent success, North went on to supply the Horse Pistol of Model 1799 -1800 by the thousands, manufactured Hall rifles and more.

Preview: Ammunition, Demystified

Billed as “Hatcher’s Notebook for the 21st century,” Ammunition, Demystified: The (Non) Bubba’s Guide To How Ammo Really Works is intended for both advanced shooters and reloaders, as well as industry professionals.

James Wallace Elected As 76th NRA Director

James L. Wallace has been elected by the members to a one-year term ending in 2025.

Rifleman Q&A: Marlin’s Mixed Markings

I have this old gun I want to shoot, but I’m not certain exactly what I have, and the gun appears to pre-date any description in the Blue Book Of Gun Values. The gun measures 43" overall, has a 26 9⁄16" barrel and its markings are as follows:

New For 2024: Diamondback Self-Defense Revolver (SDR)

Diamondback Firearms' handguns were previously of a polymer-frame, semi-automatic design, but with the release of its Self-Defense Revolver in 2024, the company is taking a new tack.

Preview: The Headrest Safe Co. Slide Bundle

For the armed citizen seeking to discreetly secure a defensive handgun in a vehicle, the Slide Bundle from The Headrest Safe Co. provides the ideal solution.


Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.