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Of all the different cartridges used in military service rifles these two perform as close to one another as to have no ballistic advantage over one another. The cartridge dimensions are different but the same bullets and powder loadings can be used in both with nearly identical performance to a point.
The 7.62x54R is designed to be used at a higher chamber pressure than the 7.7x56R. About 10,000 cup.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/7.62x54mmR
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.303_British
The 7.62x54R handles heavier hunting bullets over 150 gr in my experience and the 7.62x54R to be the more accurate of the two. This may be the firearms used though and if I had a 1914 Enfield results might be different.
I have shooting guns in both cartridges and reload for both. I have a good supply of mil-surp 7.62x54R and an adequate supply of 7.7x56R. I always figured in a post event if need be I could salvage from one supply to make cartridges for the other.
Since mil-surp ammo is becoming harder to find I am considering getting gas check cast lead bullets for reloading these cartridges. Anyone have experience doing this?
 
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