Looking for Some 7.65mm Mannlicher Ammo…

Update! Thanks to some leads I got, I now have 200 rounds of ammo inbound; half Argentine surplus and half modern loads made from .32-20 brass (and some great resources for other odd calibers I’m sure I will be needing in the future). Thanks to everyone for your help and recommendations!

I recently acquired a really nice 1905 Steyr-Mannlicher pistol, and I’m really excited to try it out on the range – but I’m having a bit of trouble finding ammo. Normally for something like this I would just wait and watch, knowing that I would come across the right stuff eventually…but I’m a bit impatient with the Steyr. The pistol feels great in the hand, has a pretty good trigger, and I have a bunch of stripper clips for it. Most unexpected of all, I can actually operate the safety without breaking my firing grip (and I’m lefthanded!). If the pistol is as nice on the the range as it has proven to be in dry handling, I am totally going to hire someone to make a nice leather OWB holster so I can carry it.

Steyr Model 1905 - no ammo!

But…I need to get some 7.65mm Mannlicher ammo (possibly also called 7.63mm Mannlicher by some people) first and get it to the range. The most common ammo appears to be 1940s Argentine surplus, which is noted to have pretty hard primers. My pistol seems to have a healthy firing pin spring, so I would be willing to but a box of the Argentine to try, if I could find it. The next most common option is buying brass from Buffalo Arms, but they are out of stock, and probably won’t be producing another batch for months.

So…if anyone has factory-loaded ammo or reloadable brass they would be willing to sell (or know where I can find either one), please let me know! Thanks!


    • Look up Cartridges of the world by Fred Barns and it will have the cartridge specs and the parent case so that you can make your own ammo. Much less expensive than buying antique stuff.
      Lee Inc. makes dies required, usually about $30 a set. Then order the parent brass from Startline, or any other maker of brass, sold at retail and bullets, powder and primers. Then it’s off to the races with an unlimited supply of ammo.

    • The Argentine military holsters are available If my memory is correct from Sarco. I bought one and some stripper clips. Like you I wanted a better holster and made a nice one. I still have the pattern and can reverse it for a lefty if you still need one after all these years.

  1. Not sure it would work, but maybe try making a case for it out of available 4.6x30mm brass.

    4.6x30mm brass dimensions, as relevant:

    Base diameter
    8.02 mm (0.316 in)

    Rim diameter
    8.00 mm (0.315 in)

    Rim thickness
    1.10 mm (0.043 in)

    Case length
    30.50 mm (1.201 in)

    7.63 mm Mannlicher case dimensions, as relevant:

    Base diameter
    .332 in (8.4 mm)

    Rim diameter
    .334 in (8.5 mm)

    Rim thickness
    .030 in (0.76 mm)

    Case length
    .84 in (21 mm)

    Cut the 4.6mm case down to 21mm, the Shoulder diameter of the 4.6mm is: 7.75 mm (0.305 in) the bullet diameter of the 7.63×25mm Mauser is: 7.86 mm (0.309 in) it’s Neck diameter is 8.46 mm (0.333 in) so the cut 4.6mm case wants to be about the diameter of the Mausers at 21mm in regards the Mannlichers bullet.

    I don’t much about reloading but it is the closest match in relevant brass sizes I could find, and you can get empties readily from Diamond K Brass apparently.

  2. If you have access to a lathe they are easy to make.
    .32 Smith & Wesson long cases or .32 H&R or.327 Mag, turn the rim flush, recut the extracter groove, might not be nessecary, trim/shorten to .84″, drill or ream 5/16″ / .312″, my notes don’t give a depth.
    Reload with .32 S&W Short or .32 ACP dies with a taper crimp.
    I can’t remember which shell holder for sure, but I think .32 ACP is the one.
    .32 S&W Short loads should be safe. I can’t find my reloading notes for this round. Trail Boss powder should be a safe powder to start with.
    Good luck.

  3. I was going to say try http://www.ammo-one.com, but Daweo beat me to it. It looks as if they have what you need available, but at the hefty cost of $4.75 per round, plus a possible delay in shipping due to the winter weather in Maine.

    Other than that, the numerous suggestions for making your own might be a better way to go.

    • Hi again;
      It shoots hard because the grip is so low compared the bore axis. I mean relatively speaking, given the weight of the pistol and modest power of the cartridge.
      It tends to twist in one’s hand and if you have weak wrists, it hurts after some few rounds.
      Secondly, it will give you “Hammer bites” on the web of hand between thumb and trigger finger if you slide your hand up the grip to better control it.

  4. I often daydream that someday soon the technology will exist as to where a company could “scan” obsolete guns part-by part, adjust the design for a similar-sized modern caliber, and produce a reasonably priced one-off or short run from modern steels by 3D metal printing or computer machining.
    I hope that such technology develops soon enough for us to all get to reap the rewards.

    • I have had this dream for years as well. And with the introduction of good-quality 3D printing machines, the right software, and the right metal stock for the printer–and some old fashioned craftsmanship–I think that day is not far away.

      There are a slew of vintage guns–such as the M1907 Steyr-Roth–that I would love to have, but in a common caliber. I’d also love to craft some vintage Title 3 stuff as well, but US law has to first change…

      • Hi again;
        They do have the technology to do that, more or less.
        The item can be measured by a Laser inferometer and the data input to a CNC Machine. The machine can make the parts you need. Care full editing could change some minor dimensions like the caliber and or chamber shape, but only so much.
        How ever, it is so much easier to either rent a chamber reamer to cut a new chamber to a more modern cartridge. Cost about $40.00.
        Or to use some existing brass to manufacture like new ammo. Most chambers on old guns have a great deal of slop in them. It was just a fact of life back then. I would suggest that you mike the case, or cast the chamber and then search Barn’s “Cartridges of the World” for a suitable “parent” cartridge to make your new cases out of.
        Although I have no clue what your chamber is like, I suspect that there are any number of cases on the market to start with. Like the .30 Carbine? Measure your chamber first. Find out what the new case was supposed to look like and go from there with loads that duplicate the factory ballistics.

    • That’s a nice idea, but in the real world, things aren’t that simple.

      Scale up a design meant for one caliber, and you wind up with things going wrong due to differences in requirements for timing, fit, and a whole slough of other issues. That’s why Glock has had so much trouble with their .40S&W pistols, over the years, and why the fixes meant for the .40 screwed up the pistol when applied to the 9mm versions.

      There are very few automatic designs that lend themselves willy-nilly to caliber adaptation. Take a look at the 10mm Colt Delta Elites, for example: A gun that was quite durable and effective in .45 ACP turned out to have major durability problems when adapted to 10mm. A good friend of mine is who turned me on to 10mm as a caliber, and his frustration with the BREN TEN not being successfully produced led him into the Delta Elite direction. His first two guns literally beat themselves to death, due to a whole host of issues. It took a couple of years before Colt finally figured out all the details, and those guns became reliable. Meanwhile, early adopters made a couple of gunsmiths wealthy getting their pistols to work. When Glock finally came out with the G20, my friend dropped his Deltas, and never looked back.

  5. a bit of OT: what’s up with the forum? I keep getting error
    “Connection Problems
    Sorry, SMF was unable to connect to the database. This may be caused by the server being busy. Please try again later. “

  6. When you get ammo for this pistol, do wood penetration tests if you can. I’m interesting in results of comparison with other blow-back pistol ammo.

    • Hi all.
      Forget wood penetration tests. They are more dependent on bullet type than anything else. If you really want to know what the power of your gun is, shoot it over a chronograph and weigh the bullets. Compute the energy, because when all else is said and done, that is what you have to do work damaging the target.
      Take two rounds, one a frangible projectile like Glasser, or Magsafe, the second a FMJ round nose like came out of your pistol when new. The Frangible bullet has maybe twice the energy and is a sure man stopper when placed in the Thoracic cavity. The other will perforate four to five times as many boards, but is most unlikely to create a fatal wound given a less than perfect hit.
      Lastly, with small bore weak cartridges like yours, you should use either hard cast Kieth style slugs or FMJ bullets to guarantee deep penetration to vital parts of the anatomy and then learn to shoot it well enough that you put the bullets in the right spot to work.

  7. If nothing pans out, as a last resort you could try Bob Hayley 940-888-3352. He specializes in small-lot construction of obsolete ammo.

    • I paid $650, and that was from a dealer. Sixteen hundred is way out of line, unless it’s special in some way (like having the Argentine crest intact, although I don’t think that would justify so much of a price hike).

  8. Argentina made in the 1970`s some experimental full-automatic copies of Browning Hi-Power chambered for the Mannlicher cartridge.

    There´s two reasons for choosing this ammo: the low recoil allowed a better control than the standard 9mm Luger, and, due the obsolescence of the ammo, the Argentinian government could produce limited quantities of this to control its distribution only to Special units.

  9. I have some FN 7.65 mannlicher ammo. I thought the diameter of the case at the base is supposed to be .332 inches? All the rounds I have measure .345 at the base, and .332 at the case mouth. (I hope thats the correct term. It’s where the bullet and case meet.) Any help on this please?

  10. I have several boxes of 7.65 ammo. On the top of the box it reads:
    50 Cartuchos Cal. 7,65 mm.
    Para pistola MANNLICHER
    Bottom of Bullet reads:
    FMMAPB 1947
    Reach out to me if you would like to discuss a purchase.

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