7.62x39 project complete*


Nov 24, 2013
*for now; I may upgrade the stock at some point

Anyhow, Howa mini action, factory barrel shortened to 16.5" and threaded. Factory trigger molested down to ~1.25 pounds, and factory stock treated to a custom Krylon job. Just got the bolt back from having the handle threaded and knob installed. Scope is nothing special; Zeiss Conquest 3-9 (had it just sitting around) on a 0 MOA base.

Should be a fun little plinker.

Greg Langelius *

Resident Elder Fart
Aug 10, 2001
Arizona, good place for me...
Your rifle is largely equivalent to my Savage 10FCM Scout 7.62x39. Mine has the .308 diameter bore, and I wonder if the Howa is likewise. I removed the Scout mount and put on a Tasco 2.5-10x42 Varmint/Target MilDot scope atop a 20MOA sloped base. I makes for a very nice walkaround varminter/maybe deer rifle for reasonably close distances.

I'm not really into subs, I am looking into lighter weight bullets instead. Toasty loads of IMR-4198 and the Hornady 110gr V-Max shoot very tight with noticeably absent pressure signs; and I'm about to start an accuracy project employing Nosler 125gr Ballistic Tips.

With the .308 bore and decent matching bullets, the x39 becomes a lot more accurate and versatile. I see it as being something more like a 30PPC than a 7.62x39. I experimented with the .30BR and came away dissatisfied with the whole concept for my personal purposes. The 308 diameter bore version of the 7.62x39 in a well fitted rifle is a whole 'nuther animal from the Kalashies and Simonovs.

Last edited:
Nov 24, 2013
Using cheap steel case ammo (Monarch 122 gr HP and Tula 122 gr HP), it looks like a 1.5-2 MOA shooter... about what I expected. Certainly MOR (minute of rabbit) or MOA (minute of armadillo), anyhow.

At some point I'll probably pick up the stuff to build my own rounds, but for now I'm satisfied.