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9.3x72R for bear?

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  • 9.3x72R for bear?

    Anyone have any first hand knowledge of this old cartridge on bear (brown, black) my gunsmith says it is way too small, .416 or larger. Thoughts? Thanks! :topjob:

  • #2
    No firsthand, but with 286 grains @ 2350, it should do about anything a 35 Whelen will do. If a Whelen is a bear gun, so is this.
    "Lay in the weeds and wait, and when you get your chance to say something, say something good."
    Merle Haggard

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    • #3
      Are you talking the 9.3x72R or the much more common 9.3x74R...

      The x72 version is black powder and what little information my reference has is a 193gr bullet at a plodding 1952 fps, generally found in OLD drillings and such. If that's correct I have to agree with your gunsmith- those are 30-30 Win/ 35Rem type numbers- not enough in my book for bears.

      If you're talking about the updated smokeless x74 version that's undergoing something of a revival the last couple of years- its much stouter- a 286gr @ 2360fps. Sort of between the .35 Whelen and .375 H&H. Both respectably powerful cartridges and adequate in most peoples' opinion for bears.

      Both of those cartridges are found nearly exclusively in single shots and doubles- not particularly my choice of action for hunting things that might bite back. The modernized 9.3x62 is the equivalent of the 9.3x74R and found in repeating actions from CZ, Sako and Ruger- a much better proposition in my opinion if you want a 9.3 bullet (which is generally wonderful from most accounts). The 9.3x64 Brenneke and 9.3x66 Sako are stouter yet and the equivalent of the .375 H&H- both are a bit odd (no odder than the x72R though) but its hard to imagine them not making a great bear gun if you want to delve into Euro cartridges.

      I disagree with your gunsmith on a minimum of a .416 for bears. That'll sure work but I would wager the overwhelming majority of bears are shot with much, much less gun than that.

      My .02...
      "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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      • #4
        I tend to agree with hodgeman here, he's done a great job of ripping off my thunder......The 9.3x72 is a very mild old cartridge, also very rare. The 9.3x74R and the 9.3x62 (rimless for bolt guns) share the same ballistics of the 286 grain at about 2350 fps. This is certainly enough for brown/grizzly. The 9.3x72R is not in this same category and personally I'd opt for more horsepower.

        If you have a 9.3x72R rifle it is likely a single, drilling or double gun from old Europe. It may be too valuable to take on a bear hunt anyway especially since the bear may end up with it.

        A 416 for bears? You bet...that would be my pick for any coastal brownie hunt where they get big and fat. Or possible my .411 bear rifle....I like forty caliber rifles and can shoot 416 class guns quite well, but honestly they aren't really necessary. Your 9.3x72 is more in the class of the 38-55 or the 40-65 black powder cartridges....not the thing to tote for big bears when there are so many good cartridges available.
        Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?


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        • #5
          Sorry for stealing any thunder but I've got the inclination to turn into a complete 9.3mm nerd!

          I shot a x62 in a Mauser and the x74R in Ruger#1 and fell in love. I watched with eternal hope as the 9.3x66SAKO(aka 370 Sako Mag) failed to launch in the US. I still may make one up when I run across a clean M70 action that needs something better to do (and I feel like eternally scrounging obsolete brass).

          Barring that- the Ruger African is now available in 9.3x62 and given those rifles moderate price and the new found availability of factory fodder I may take home the first one I find. The new CZ kevlar stocked rifles sound interesting as well but the CZs in general tend to be harder to come by here.

          For some reason I really am enamored with the 9.3s... moderate velocity, good bullets, reasonable pressures, there is a lot to like and I predict will be seeing more of this caliber in the US.
          "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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          • #6
            9.3x62 in the Ruger African would certainly be nice and enough to get the job done. Fascinating cartridge.
            A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
            THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
            THE HEART OF A CHILD
            THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

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            • #7
              Yeah it actually was a drilling I was looking at with that caliber. It did say 72, not 74. I really want a drilling but have a cap at what I can afford.

              http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=225400705

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              • #8
                Got this guy with the 9.3 x 74R using 286gr Nosler Partitions. One shot, he never knew what hit him.
                Attached Files
                Afflicted by condition human

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by e45colt View Post
                  Got this guy with the 9.3 x 74R using 286gr Nosler Partitions. One shot, he never knew what hit him.
                  e45colt:

                  Isn't that a SLING, on that rifle?

                  From your previous posts, I thought you didn't like slings, preferring to have the rifle in your hands, ready for action. (Advice from your Dad.)

                  Did you have a change of heart, and now recognize that Slings are practically essential, here in the Greatland?

                  Thanks,
                  Smitty of the North
                  Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
                  Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
                  You can't out-give God.

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                  • #10
                    I would pass on this gun without holding it.With buggered up screws its hard to tell who all been in the gun. At least two cracks in the stock and most likely proofed for 2 1/2 shells.JMHO
                    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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                    • #11
                      Good eye Will! Thank you sir. Also realizing it was not the 9.3x74R kills the idea of that one.

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                      • #12
                        Smitty check your PM's as I did not want to hijack the thread with your unrelated question.
                        Afflicted by condition human

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                        • #13
                          Didn't find anything there, resend? Thanks!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by THE_HUNTERIAM View Post
                            Didn't find anything there, resend? Thanks!
                            Oops, not meant for me. Sorry!

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by e45colt View Post
                              Got this guy with the 9.3 x 74R using 286gr Nosler Partitions. One shot, he never knew what hit him.
                              Nice bear! Thank you for posting!

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