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9.3X62

9.3x62

Otto Bock designed the 9.3×62mm in 1905, Mauser first chambered it in 1906.  This round ballistically and physically resembles the 35 Whelen, developed almost 20 years later.  It has somewhat greater case capacity and a slightly larger-diameter bullet but is loaded to slightly lower pressure.  Best loads in the 9.3 will outperform best loads in the Whelen but the difference is not significant.

The 9.3 gained notoriety as the only non-magnum chambering allowed for use in much of Africa when hunting dangerous game.  No magic was involved.  First, ballistically, it is not all that far behind original loads in the 375 H&H; second, and more importantly, unlike other smaller sporting rounds of the era, the 9.3 was originally loaded with extremely tough bullets that would hold together to get the job done on heavy African Species with thick, tough hide.  This was the key to the success of the 9.3 on what was then universally referred to as the Dark Continent (a moniker having nothing to do with skin color).


Today, the 9.3×62 is well recognized as a wonderful choice for hunting of all larger species of big game and happens to be the chambering I chose when I hunted moose in Sweden — it worked splendidly, instantly dropping my moose with a shot at 80-yards necessarily taken at a difficult angle!

Oddly, this cartridge uses a case with about the same base diameter as the 6.5×55mm, 0.476-inch.  While the 2% difference in capacity is not sufficient to give it much advantage, compared to an otherwise similar case of normal (Mauser) diameter, 0.471-inch, 2% is enough to matter — perhaps 25-fps in a case of this size, not much, but something.  I have no idea where Bock got the idea to use this case diameter but why not?  In my opinion, the fact that he stepped out of the comfort zone of merely copying Mauser speaks well of him.


The text associated with the cartridge description reflects opinions and conclusions of the author, M.L. (Mic) McPherson. Lee Precision and its employees do not necessarily either agree or disagree with any of his comments. We present these with due deference to his recognized expertise in the firearms field. His acumen extends to handloading and all aspects of ballistics - internal, external, and terminal.
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