Walter D.M. Bell aka Karamojo Bell

Discussion in 'Legends Of Big Game Hunting' started by monish, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. Ryan

    Ryan AH Fanatic

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    In his article 'Small Bore Versus Big Bore' from American Rifleman, December 1954 he mentions the .256 MS for killing a lot of meat animals for his camps. While the 303 Enfield and 275 Rigby also get mentioned he doesn't bring up the 6.5 X 54 MS at all in the article.
     

  2. Bos Javanicus

    Bos Javanicus AH Senior Member

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    I am starting to think now that people just assumed he was using a 6.5x54. Even the guy who wrote the article for this thread assumes he used a 6.5x54, I can't find any references anywhere he did use one.
     
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  3. fourfive8

    fourfive8 AH Fanatic

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    I've read most of Bell's stuff at least two or three times. And you know, you may be exactly right. I like most didn't concentrate on the exact cartridge when reading about his use of the 256/6.5. I know he liked the little 256. But after re,re and re-reading all I have by Bell, I too can't find the exact cartridge in reference. May be just simple and understandable oversight and/or assumption based on both the rifle and the cartridge having the same name of Mannlicher-Shoenauer (M-S). I could even see how Townsend Whelen who compiled and edited for publication a bunch of Bell's material for him, could have just glossed over it and not exacted or dwelled on that particular detail.

    It's also apparent, to me at least, that he really liked the 318 and the history of the 7x57 (275 Rigby :)) as his trademark cartridge for elephant may have been all together different if quality, reliable "solid" bullet 318 ammo had been available in quantity to him instead of the 7x57.

    Of course we may never know with certainty any of this trivia in question and likely it really doesn't matter much anyway. His legacy and amazing life stands on it's own merit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2019
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  4. fourfive8

    fourfive8 AH Fanatic

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    After beating the bushes a little more about this 256/6.5 haziness I think I can make some kind of educated guess - a real SWAG if you will.

    He used both types.
    He used a Gibbs regular sporter rifle 256 that was most likely a 6.5x53R (rimmed).
    He also used a Mannlicher-Shoenauer in somewhat of a carbine/sporterized form that was most likely a 6.5x54 M-S (rimless).

    He clearly states in his writing he used the Gibbs 256 (6.5x53R) for general meat gathering and the Mannlicher-Shoenauer in 6.5x54 (M-S) for quite large number of elephants.

    He also stated that the 6.5 with the 156 (160?) grain "solid" had plenty of penetration potential because of the high sectional density but because of the "thinness" of the shank it had a tendency to bend, if stressed, thus losing much of the advantage of the high sectional density. He also stated the 7x57 and .318 did not have that tendency.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
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  5. HWL

    HWL AH Fanatic

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    I felt like Karamojo Bell while shopping .....

    150 rounds of DWM 156 gr FMJ round nose in original packaging!
    6,5x54MS.jpg

    ....now I need an elephant!

    ;)

    HWL
     
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  6. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Very nice - hopefully non-corrosive primed?
     

  7. HWL

    HWL AH Fanatic

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    I will figure out this,..... but I do not think it's corrosive.

    Non corrosive sinoxid primers were patented in Germany in 1928 and the complete ammunition production was non corrosive within a few years.

    Nontheless, I will collect the telephon books of the neighborhood for a little penetration test.


    :whistle:

    HWL
     
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