View Full Version : 7x57IMP Contender

05-15-2006, 12:38 AM

I need your opinion, is this chambering TOO much for a Contender frame?

Secondly, if safe, what would your starting loads be?


05-15-2006, 04:56 AM
It will work. I had the best groups with IMR 4831, i was loading 50grs under a speer 130gr spbt in my 98

05-15-2006, 08:07 PM
For a Contender frame, yes, it's too much. That's why T/C came out with the Encore. I suppose it might be safe if you kept down to 7x30Waters levels, but that would defeat the purpose of the chambering. Just out of curiosity, why the Imp? I can't think of anything you'd want to do that the original 7x57 or the .280Rem won't do just fine.

05-15-2006, 11:58 PM

The IMP is "Improved", angled shoulders. I have to admit I really messed up this project. I asked the 'smith to rechamber to a 7 Alpo. I read about it on the Bellm site. The 'smith opted to rechamber to the 7x57Imp; he said it was a better round. I have not shot it since he did the work. I was told it was unsafe. I needed other handloaders opinions on what to do with it now. I appreciate your advice--keep it coming, thanks.


05-17-2006, 01:10 AM
Yes, the IMP was designed to give 1-200 more fps depending on the bullet chosen over the 7x57Mauser, but the .280 came along in 1957 and equaled the IMP. My point was that the original 7x57 is one of the better all-around hunting rounds for most N. American game (although I'd want something with a little more authority for big bears or longer ranges).

All three of those 7mm rounds exceed safe pressures in the Contender by a significant amount. There is just not enough thickness of metal left in the barrel when a chamber of that diameter is reamed into it to contain those pressures. Possibly they could be contained safely in one of the 1" diameter custom barrels, but it is still way over what the frame itself was designed to handle, and I frankly doubt that any of the custom shops would agree to build one. It's just not safe. Especially since one could have an Encore in .280 easily and without needing to go the custom route.

Here's where I get out the violin....
What follows is a personal opinion. For what it's worth, I would not describe anyone who would chamber a Contender for such a round as a gunsmith. "Bubba" is about the most complementary I would get, but my honest reaction was unprintable. I believe it will perform more like a pipe bomb than a firearm. I would not shoot it, nor would I want to be anywhere near anyone attempting to. If it was done without your permission, I think he owes you a barrel (not to mention an apology).

Information about the pressure levels of the cartridges and the design specs and pressure ceilings of the frame and barrels is readily available to any competent gunsmith. You don't just go rechambering any firearm without doing some basic reasearch. That was HIS responsibility BTW, not yours. If anyone were to be injured or killed while firing it, he would be criminally liable.

I would almost (but not quite) be tempted to buy a box of factory 7x57's and ask him if he'd mind fire forming the cases some weekend when I was out of state. I believe that would effectively remove a dangerously stupid individual from the gene pool. :mrgreen:

05-19-2006, 03:37 PM
Versifier is right on... on all points. If I was you I'd ask that fellow to replace my barrel he screwed up and I'd not darken his doorway again.

05-19-2006, 08:39 PM
We've been bouncing the PM's back and forth to see if we can get him straightened out. Bubba is a fairly well known "gunsmith", but natural selection may well solve the problem the next time someone requests a proof test. :mrgreen: In any event, I know we will all like to hear how it goes down. Then we can "out" him. There are plenty of gun forums where the word can be spread about incompetent rechamberings and shady business dealings.

05-21-2006, 10:27 AM
Thanks guys,

I am working on a planned response to the 'smith. Hopefully he'll do the right thing. I'll let you know.


06-14-2006, 03:23 AM
7mm Super Bower and slightly bigger than 7mm Bellm.

Loading could well keep it in linewith Contender limits, but will have room for additional powder in lost loadings I am guessing.

How about the "gunsmith" replacing the barrel and keeping that one for their own use since it is a "BETTER" round . . . .


06-14-2006, 10:09 PM
Hey, if he won't stand behind his work you can always do like the anti's do and take him to court. A good liability suit might save someones life if he was put out of business.

06-16-2006, 07:35 PM
Things are progressing...

I believe the 'smith and his new partner are going to come good!

I just have to be patience.

When the dust settles, I'll let you know.


06-30-2006, 06:42 PM

About a month ago I started a thread concerning a 7x57 Contender. I was told it was unsafe. With the help of several forum members, I was able to contact Kim M, the gunsmiths' business partner.

Kim has gone out of his way to make things right. I have always wanted a 309JDJ; I found one on eBay. Kim joined eBay, bid and won the barrel/dies/brass. After an adventure in the Postal Service(shipped to the wrong address), the barrel arrived yesterday. It's just what I wanted!

Kim has been in constant communication through emails working things out. As far as I am concerned Kim has fixed my problem! I am impressed with his professionalism and integrity in this matter. With this level of customer service, his new business should do well.

Thank you Kim.

I want to thank the forum members for their advice and guidance in this matter.


06-30-2006, 09:54 PM
That's good news, it's nice to hear that kind of happy ending once in a while :).
I'd like to hear from that 309JDJ too when you start getting results with it.

I wonder how Kim feels about the "smith" he got to partner with.
It is amazing to meet so many gunsmiths with a diploma who don't have any clue or common sense out of the specialty they graduated with, or any ability to learn; but then it is the same in most fields now...:???:


07-01-2006, 04:16 AM
Excellent news, Ursus. I'm glad everything worked out for you so well. I am also interested in what kind of results you get with the .309. It's an interesting concept and I bet it's everything we only wish the .30-30 and .30 Herrett could be in a handgun. It sounds to me like an easier alternative to finding .307 brass and basicallly identical performance-wise in the short barrel.