The Perfect 9.3x62 Safari Rifle

perdurabo

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I'm a big fan of the 9.3x62 as an all around hunting cartridge, and am looking for a handy practical rifle in 9.3x62 that I can use for nilgai hunting in south Texas and maybe even take to Africa at some point for plains game.

I'm considering buying a Ruger Guide Gun in 30-06 and sending it to JES Reboring to have it rebored, but I've read mixed reviews of their work and a fair amount of criticism of the owner's business communication habits (hes super hard to get hold of and he only communicates by voice, apparently).

If reboring is impractical or not advised in my case, I may consider rebarreling altogether but that depends a lot on cost and what the trade offs are as far as losing or retaining features. If I rebarrel, will it still be possible to have the same matte stainless finish, the express sights, barrel band sling swivel, matching brake etc? This isnt some generic Rem 700 action with ez-on, ez-off prefit barrels, its got to be done by a gunsmith, most likely.

Of course there's also buying a rifle already chambered in 9.3x62, and in fact I already have a CZ550 that is, but it's hardly what I would consider a practical rifle appropriate for Texas nilgai or African plains game. It's the "Bavarian" model with full length mannlicher style stock, and while it looks pretty, I think it would be more appropriate for something like a Romanian boar hunt or an Austrian stag hunt or something along those lines. My moustache isn't waxed and curly enough for that rifle.

Anyway, Both Steyr and Mauser (Mauser M12) have 9.3x62 rifles in their catalogs, but few if any are imported into the US, apparently. I'd really love one of those Rigby Highland Stalkers but that's sadly well out of my current budget. I also love the Steyr SBS action on my Steyr Scout and having something like Steyr CLII in 9.3x62 would be perfect, but it would require either importing a rifle from Europe (probably very expensive with lots of annoying red tape) or reboring a 30-06 or .270 version, which may result in a very very thin walled barrel if there isn't much "meat" on the barrel to begin with. At least with the Ruger Guide Gun there appears to be enough additional diameter to the barrel to rebore effectively.

My only real gripe with the Ruger is the atrocious bolt slop that's apparently endemic to the M77 action. I worry about the sloppy bolt getting bound up in situations where I'd need to reload quickly for a follow-up shot. There any way to smooth out and tighten up a Ruger M77 action?

How would you go about it?
 
@perdurabo, you could not have chosen a better round for Nilgai than the 9.3x62 and that cartridge, along with 35 Whelen are my two favorites for the Blue Bull of India. The CZ 550 American is my tops for the x62 and I believe it will give you everything you are looking for, including a more classic style, just like it's big brother. Good luck and let us know how it goes.
 
I have a Steyr SM12 and it’s an incredible rifle.

Mine had the wood stock and fiber optic iron sights.

It’s has Talley QD Bases and rings and shoots bullet weights from 180 to 286 grains to the same point of impact.

It is very close to perfect from my point of view.

I also have a CZ 550 with the Classic American stock that I am fond of as well.

Either rifle is perfect for African hunting.

With 250 grain Barnes TSXs at 2650 fps, they can handle almost anything up to big bears or Cape buffalo.

With 286 grain solids and softs, they will handle pretty much anything.
 
There are a lot of options right available on gunbroker alone, much less the other sources. I recently watched a tikka t3 that ended yesterday. I really wanted it, but other stuff is more important right now. I have a Ruger in 9.3x62, and it is my favorite gun. It shoots very well with several different bullets, brands and weights. I took it to Africa last year instead of my Kimber caprivi 375. It may go again this year, still in that debate. So don’t rule out the Ruger. There are several cheaper options available as well.
 
I'm a big fan of the 9.3x62 as an all around hunting cartridge, and am looking for a handy practical rifle in 9.3x62 that I can use for nilgai hunting in south Texas and maybe even take to Africa at some point for plains game.

I'm considering buying a Ruger Guide Gun in 30-06 and sending it to JES Reboring to have it rebored, but I've read mixed reviews of their work and a fair amount of criticism of the owner's business communication habits (hes super hard to get hold of and he only communicates by voice, apparently).

If reboring is impractical or not advised in my case, I may consider rebarreling altogether but that depends a lot on cost and what the trade offs are as far as losing or retaining features. If I rebarrel, will it still be possible to have the same matte stainless finish, the express sights, barrel band sling swivel, matching brake etc? This isnt some generic Rem 700 action with ez-on, ez-off prefit barrels, its got to be done by a gunsmith, most likely.

Of course there's also buying a rifle already chambered in 9.3x62, and in fact I already have a CZ550 that is, but it's hardly what I would consider a practical rifle appropriate for Texas nilgai or African plains game. It's the "Bavarian" model with full length mannlicher style stock, and while it looks pretty, I think it would be more appropriate for something like a Romanian boar hunt or an Austrian stag hunt or something along those lines. My moustache isn't waxed and curly enough for that rifle.

Anyway, Both Steyr and Mauser (Mauser M12) have 9.3x62 rifles in their catalogs, but few if any are imported into the US, apparently. I'd really love one of those Rigby Highland Stalkers but that's sadly well out of my current budget. I also love the Steyr SBS action on my Steyr Scout and having something like Steyr CLII in 9.3x62 would be perfect, but it would require either importing a rifle from Europe (probably very expensive with lots of annoying red tape) or reboring a 30-06 or .270 version, which may result in a very very thin walled barrel if there isn't much "meat" on the barrel to begin with. At least with the Ruger Guide Gun there appears to be enough additional diameter to the barrel to rebore effectively.

My only real gripe with the Ruger is the atrocious bolt slop that's apparently endemic to the M77 action. I worry about the sloppy bolt getting bound up in situations where I'd need to reload quickly for a follow-up shot. There any way to smooth out and tighten up a Ruger M77 action?

How would you go about it?
I'd get a beater stock for the CZ 550 in a style you like and use it. Put the original stock back on for the continental driven boar hunt.
 
Check out Shaw barrels web page, they make custom rifles in 9.3x62.
 
I had a rebore done in the last year by JES reboring and was absolutely happy with the experience. I went from 270 to 9.3x62 and had him chop the barrel as well, at no additional cost. I unfortunately have not shot it yet, but bet it shoots as good as I do.
 
I have a Mauser M12 in 9.3x62. I like it a lot. Accurate, well balanced, detachable mag, light but very manageable recoil, excellent trigger. Timber on mine not as fancy as the picture.

waffe_M12_Holz_re_li.png
 
My go to 9.3 x62 these days is the Blaser R8 professional.

If you want something pretty then a Rigby HS would be hard to beat.

But my first choice would be the R8.
 
Keeping it in the Blaser / Mauser / Rigby / Sauer family - another alternative is one of the Sauers.

S 100 - Entry level German made - a friend has one in 9.3x62 and it shoots well.

S 101 - basically a Mauser M12 with a different safety

S 404 a switch barrel rifle which they describe as 'Confidently Stylish' :ROFLMAO:

S 505 - 'For moments of true happiness' :ROFLMAO:

 
"Bolt Slop," lol... nope. The tolerances on Ruger M77 rifles were stipulated by Old Bill... and that is "make sure the damn thing works in all conditions." Sounds right to me... and more than four decades of using Ruger M77 rifles all over North America has proven Bill right time and again.

As for your rebore plan, I'm not on board. You would be far further ahead sourcing an M77 Hawkeye African in 9.3X62... just make sure it has true bluing and not the Hawkeye "BBQ" paint. An African will hold its value and keep you in style.
 
I've been extremely happy with my M77 Hawkeye African in 9.3x62. It wears a Trijicon Accupoint 1-6 with a #4 reticle and Alaska Arms quick detach rings.

I'm using Swift 286gr. A-Frames at 2350fps and the rifle is reliably in the 1-1.5 MOA range at 200 yds with a very consistent POI. With a 175 yd. zero, I keep my point of impact within 2 inches of point of aim everywhere out to 200 yds, making it very quick and simple at the ranges for which 9.3x62 is practical. I know the Boyd's laminate stock will not win any beauty contests, but it allowed me to easily get my preferred LOP of 14.5" and it's been very durable. Most importantly it has no discernible shift in zero regardless of temp and humidity.

Rt. Side Complete.jpg

L. Side.jpg

Rt. Side.jpg


I have prettier rifles but, for me, this gun is about as functional as they come. That's something that makes it quite attractive in my eyes. I'm bringing this rifle to the FTW Ranch this summer, and I'm looking forward to taking it to South Africa when my son and I head there in the summer of 2025.
 
Last I checked G.B. there was a nice ( but a bit pricey) CZ 550 American in 9.3x62. The only reason i am not buying it is because ive already blow'n out my rifle budget for the foreseeable future.You should also check eurooptic. They stock many of the European manufacturers there, and I'm guessing it is easier to find a rifle than you think. I have a Mauser m12 and a Sauer 100 xt both in 9.3x62, and I consider both of those to be excellent options. My vote is you should keep looking and not rebore. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by how many options there really are out there. Good luck.
 
Image1712281283.025497.jpg


The bottom rifle is the finest 9.3x62 I have used. Rigby Highland Stalker with a Swarovski Z6 1.7-10x mounted in EAW pivot mounts. I know you say it is out of budget, but owning one would be worth selling off a few other rifles.
 
Have you shot that CZ550 FS? They are very accurate and may be just exactly the rifle you need for that Nilgai hunt in the Texas brush country.
 
2 points -

You have a CZ550. Last thing I would worry about are style points with the mannlicher stock. First thing I'd do is torture test that action with your chosen dummy ammo to find anywhere that needs polishing. WRT the stock, make sure you can get a solid cheek weld with your chosen glass mounted on top.

M77 Hawkeye African - my Lipseys version is to date the only CRF action I own, factory or otherwise, that passed torture testing with flying colors out of the box. The others have all needed tweaks here and there to become absolutely, dead nuts, ready to go and annoy an annoyable beast.

You already have the cartridge and a right proper complete action. Spend the time and perhaps the money to make what you have ready to go.
 
Hawkeye M77 would be a fine choice.

Another would be a vintage Husqvarna 640/1640.

I have a 9.3X62 Husqvarna and absolutely love it. It's not pretty, it's an absolute beater but it handles and holds so perfectly I have kept from selling it even to fund what would hopefully be a better 9.3X62.

Theres been some nice ones on gunbroker sold for $1,000-$1300. Theres one on GB right now in fact, in great shape. Sellers name is "Grouse Grove" a man with a solid reputation and has good quality firearms.
 
Another choice would be RJ Renners "Old African" upgrade. He promotes it primarily for the model 70 but he does work on Rugers and Remingtons so he may be willing to work with you.
 

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