Why 7mm on the 7x33 sako?

Discussion in 'General Sako Discussions' started by topgear, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Just wondering and hoping for discussion on why sako went with 7mm for the 7x33 sako cartridge? I understand the reasoning behind the brass (stretched 9mm) which makes sense but why 7mm for the projectile? There wasn't an existing 7mm projectile they were making at that weight so why not go down to say .25 or .22? Was it simply a case that they didn't have smaller dies of other diameters or was it some legal type "game" regulation?

    Would be interested to hear peoples thoughts or knowledge on this.


    Cheers John
     
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  2. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    So what would a .22x33 sako or .25x33 sako look like?

    From left to right: .22x33 sako, .25x33 sako and the standard 7x33 sako.
    sakowildcat.JPG

    I dunno, they look pretty good. The .22x33 sako would outperform the .221 fireball ballistically I think and the .25x33 sako has just about the right bullet weight range for the small case and would leave the old .25-20 for dead.
    Imagine if sako came out with the .22x33 sako instead of the hornet back in 1946/7. It would have been pretty interesting!
     
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  3. L61R

    L61R SCC President Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    John, here are my 2 cents.

    Sako made around 275 million military cartridges during the war plus a few million civilian ones. A lot of those were 9mm Parabellum and they also experimented on other ammo for Finnish submachine guns etc.

    So they had the knowledge and the tools to manufacture good ammo but when the war ended there were no longer a need for such large volumes of military ammo.

    At the same time, the L46 model came to life and Sako needed a cartridge for it. The intended use for the L46 was mainly small game and especially large birds in Finland and Scandinavia.

    Sako had the tools as I said earlier and they investigated how long they could make the cases for the L46 action and came to the conclusion that 33mm was the longest they could make with their existing tools and machines.

    Utilitarian as they were and are, they simply necked down the 9mm cases to 7mm, a caliber it was easy to find bullets for. I am not sure if they made their own bullets from the start but at any case(!) those bullets were readily available from Germany as an example.

    7mm was also a very popular caliber in Finland at that time so I guess they just stuck with what they knew?

    Incidentally, .25-20 and .32-20 also has 33mm long cases, if memory doesn´t fail me?

    Again, just my take on the 7x33. Most of this info is data I´ve picked up from various articles and such.

    Jim
     
  4. Branxhunter

    Branxhunter Well-Known Member

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    While you are at it, why not a .17x33 and a .20x33? The little L46 could be quite a hot-rod.

    Marcus
     
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  5. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Jim I wonder if the 1st projectiles were from something else? I've never seen a 7mm projectile that light on anything else. I also wonder if they did produce there own projectiles from the start how they came to settle on 78grn?

    It would certainly be very interesting to know this sort of history in the development of the cartridge, but I suppose that knowledge has been lost to time and hasn't been recorded anywhere.

    Marcus - yes the .17 and .20 version would be interesting too. A lot of years until they came available however whereas .22 and .25 caliber projectile would have been around in 1946 but maybe not as common as we think of them today. A .17/33 or .20/33 Sako would certainly be a dynamite fox rifle!
     
  6. mrfiberclass

    mrfiberclass Well-Known Member

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    I Think the bullets were of own manufacture, judging from all old bullet boxes I have seen. I used to have a 7x33 and 1200 factory cartridges and 800 factory bullets and a set of dies... My guess is that they made up the cartridge and optimized the bullet weight to the desired muzzle velocity - not too fast to destroy the meat on the birds. The shots are normally taken from 30-80m. In order to put down the large birds with FMJ a wide and round projectile was better than a smaller diameter one with a pointed nose.
     
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  7. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Thanks for the insights mrfiberclass. That all makes sense and gives some good logic to the thinking behind the development of the round. A couple more questions which would be good to get you guys opinions/experience on in Europe where the round was developed.

    1. What would have the 7x33 been mainly designed to hunt for? Capercaillie or a number of other species like beaver, seals etc as well? Can you still hunt beaver and seals now?

    2. With the capercaillie you mention the use of fmj to minimise meat damage. Just wondering where you try and aim for on the birds? Head shots? Do you try not to shoot the beasts as these are the best eating meat?
     
  8. mrfiberclass

    mrfiberclass Well-Known Member

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    Capercaillie and black grouse were and is the intended game. You shoot them in the body and it is therefore you only want a FMJ so it will make a fairly neat wound channel to prevent excessive meat damage. It can also be used for medium sized game like roe deer, beaver etc. However, due to the limited long range capacities of the round, it is best to restrict yourself to 100 m or so. That is why hunting for capercaillie with a standing dog in the woods is suitable for such a caliber. Normally, the shooting distances will not be so long since the trees will obstruct the vision.
     
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  9. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I have read that there were two specific purposes that the 7x33 was intended for: Capercaillie and fur seals on the ice. The seals required head shots and the small bullet at modest speed was efficient and effective.

    In many states, including my own, turkeys are hunted with rifles a bit like capercaillie in Northern Europe. The 7x33 with FMJ's is a perfect fit for that task.
     
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  10. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Stonecreek either you or Deeregoose have to shoot a turkey for us guys next season with your 7x33 and get some photos for the forum for us please!

    Also congrats on 100 likes. A really top effort!
     
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  11. Juhak

    Juhak Member

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    7x33 were desiged for small game hunting like black grouse and capercaillie. It's perfect caliber for bird hunter with standing dog. The Finnish shooters and hunters have noticed in 1920's- 1930's that 7 mm bullets have excellent hunting and ballistic properties. That's main reason for 7 mm bullet. During the war Sako was responsile for manufacturing 9 mm cartridges and the idea was to use the same tools for manufacturing civil products. Original bullet for 7x33 was 6 g (93gr) FMJ/SP "pistol bullet". A few years later Sako launched new 5,1 g (78gr) FMJ/SP bullet which is almost the same like current 108B/109B.
     
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  12. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I resisted shooting a turkey with my 7x33 all of the last spring season. We had them within shotgun distance of our front porch, but I was waiting on one of my grandkids to come shoot one instead -- which one of them (age 10) did with a M78 .22 Hornet -- his first "big game" of any type. I won't be so patient next April and promise to attempt to do just as you've instructed.

    By the way, my other grandson (age 13) took two turkeys with his L579 .308 Mannlicher just a couple of weeks ago -- both with the same shot! Even more surprising, not a single ounce of meat on either turkey breast was damaged.
     
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  13. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Thanks Juhak for the great reply. I never knew of the 93 grn loading. What pistol was this from?

    Interesting hearing more about the dogs in capercaillie hunting. What is there purpose? Do they retrieve the birds or point them? or are they just for good company?

    Steve - looking forward to it. I remember that photo of your grandson. His smile was as big as the great Australia bite!
     
  14. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    I don't know who this guy is but I love seeing his photos on Instagram. A late model 7x33 with a dog and capercaillie! Would love it if he happened to see this on the forum and jumped on and posted about it!
    image.jpeg
     
  15. bjorn240

    bjorn240 Well-Known Member

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    What's his user name? I feel like I follow most anyone who posts on Insta about capercaillie hunting and people with jämthundar or finnish spitz, but I don't recognize that photo.
     
  16. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    Jaktroy is the name. Do a search for " jaktroy 7x33" and you will find them.
     
  17. topgear

    topgear Sako-addicted

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    I was looking through a friends bullet collection the other day and saw these. 7x57 rounds with what look like the 78 grn Sako projectile. I take it VMT is valmet. Anyone ever seen the 78 grn 7mm projectiles in something other than a 7x33?

    image.jpeg image.jpeg
     
  18. bjorn240

    bjorn240 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks!
     
  19. mattimoose

    mattimoose Well-Known Member

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    In collecting Finnish Militaria, I spent a lot of time Reading Kekkonen's "Gunwritersin Haku" I think there were only 13 episodes before he died. He was a very interesting character who had somehow been involved in wartime Finnish armaments. He had stated that there was an officer who insisted on 7mm developments and I believe there may have been a military root. Finnish practicality, frugality and tenacity are not bad things to have.

    If Russia would not have been next door, SAKO/Lapua would have never developed the small-rifle primered case that became the 22PPC(.220 Russian, .220 Vostok or 5.45x39AK74) cartridge. Ironically, in 1984 or 85, I was standing in line at Ammomart in Hawkesbury ontario next to a gigantic, clear, plastic bag of new 220 cases. I didn't recognize-it and was even more confused when I picked-it up and looked at the headstamp. In retrospect, I guess maybe the bag was going to Pindell or Palmisano?

    More recently I had some steel cased Russian ammo of their latest 5.5 iteration, 39mm long, which shares the same case head as the 7x33 but in a steel casing.I guess you can get more ammo in theAK mags this way. Hopefully Finland will have a contingency plan to start making small rifle primered brass for-it so we can form 7x33. Or maybe they already have?

    Conversely, they stopped making their own Valmets and are buying AKMs from China. Frugality, frugality. Lessons learned in the wars are long lived. Frontline troops in offensive actions treated PPSH41's off of dead Soviets and treated them as disposable whereas the Suomi is immortal and infinitely rebuildable. Kinda like a bic lighter as opposed to a Zippo. The same can be said of them seeing cheap Chinese rifles as disposable when the chips are down; saving the Valmets.
     
  20. alpine hunter

    alpine hunter Well-Known Member

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    Just had a bit of a look online and found the 78gr 7mm in softpoint and fmj are to be found in 7x57 and 7x54 Finnish loads from Sako.
    Would not be surprised if it has also been loaded in the 7x50 cartridge as well.
     
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