Advice for loading 7x57 & 6.5x55

hawkeyesatx

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Hello all!

I have a Winchester M70 in 7x57, and it can take the modern rifle loads.
Plus, I have a 1917 Carl Gustafs M38 Swedish Mauser.
Anyone have their favorite pet loads for each rifle?
I have on hand Hornady 139gr SP Boattails, and 139 gr SST’s in 7mm.
In 6.5, I have 143 gr Hornady Match bullets, and 129 gr SST’s.
Please let me know, and thank you very much in advance.


Hawk
 
I use IMR 4064 with 160 & 175 gr A-Frames and 145 & 160 gr Speer spritzers. 4064 works well on all bullet weights.
 
Shootist43 is who you’re looking for with the 6.5x55 information. I looked through many older threads to find the loading for my Schultz and Larsen 6.5 “target rifle” with a very long throat.
 
In my 6.5x55, I have the best accuracy with the Hornady 143 using H1000. It's a full case and low pressure good for 2700 fps in my 23" barrel.

Other loads that worked well are IMR-4831 and Accurate MagPro which both shoot sub-moa. I suspect Ramshot Magnum, IMR 7828 or 7977 would also work well but I haven't tried those.
 
RL22 and 139 Lapuas (in Lapua brass) are very accurate in my M96 and M96/38 Swedes. 44.0 grains generally produced ~MOA groups at 100 with the irons. Go much hotter and you risk a broken case. (AMHIK)

IIRC, RL19 was a favorite for the M38 when I spent some time on the Surplus Rifles sites.
 
Hi Hawk

The 7x57 I have no experience with, but the 6,5x55 SE I have been loading for the last 15+ years.
Powder to go for in the 140 gr bullet range is a slow burning type.
As I´m living in Denmark the easiest powders to get is european, so I´m not familiar with US types of powder.
Norma MRP
Rhino 22, 23 (produced by Norma)
Vihtavouri N160, N560
RS 70

I use:
Norma brass
Norma MRP 48-49 gr. gives good results in my Sako rifles and is safe. OAL is 80 mm 3,15"
I did a load test for some years ago with my old rebuild Schultz and Larsen target rifle.
4 different bullets all in 139-140 gr. range. Hornady SST and Interlock and Nosler Partition and AB
Same powder charge 48 gr. MRP OAL 80 mm. group of 20 bullets 5 each was less than 40 mm. at 100m.

Your rifle is a good strong CG M38 so look for european loaddata forget about weak US loads developed for old Krag Jorgensen rifles.

A friend of mine had a rebuild CG rifle I was loading for, it loved Norma 156 gr Alaska bullets and Hornady 160 gr. RN
These Rebuild Swedish military rifles was sold to hunters in the thousands here in Denmark in the past and there is still a lot of them out there.
New Monte Carlo style hunting stock and barrel shortened.

Good luck with your nice CG M38 the 6,5x55 SE is one of the most versatile hunting rounds ever made.

Steen
 
Of the bullets you mentioned for the 7x57, the only one I have experience with is the 139 Hornady BT. My load for my M.70 using that bullet is 50 grains of IMR-4350 which produces 2715 fps. Although it isn't a high pressure load in my rifle, work up to it.
 
I use IMR 4064 with 160 & 175 gr A-Frames and 145 & 160 gr Speer spritzers. 4064 works well on all bullet weights.

Should have clarified that this is for the 7x57 (kinda obvious w the bullet weights ). I have had very poor luck w that 139 gr hornady. I haven’t used the other one you listed.

My experience has been that Speer spitzers and Swift A-Frames in the same bullet weight have very similar POI’s in most rifles. Hence the bullet selection listed.
 
I own 3 different modern rifles in 6.5x55 SE, and this article was very helpful in working up loads for my rifles. YMMV.

 
I own 3 different modern rifles in 6.5x55 SE, and this article was very helpful in working up loads for my rifles. YMMV.


That’s a really good article.
Unfortunately, my M38 is still in it’s military configuration.
I’m not able to load it that hot, as I could with Winchester M70 7x57.
But, the old tried and true loads aren’t any slouch. They work quite well, even for such an old girl like mine.


Hawk
 
Last edited by a moderator:
I can comfortably achieve 2800fps out of my Zastava with 160gn Woodleigh PP and AR2209 (H4350).
The long throat allows quite a hefty charge and long COAL which is safe in this rifle, and very effective.
Barrel twist in the Zastava is 1:220mm (approx. 8.5")
 
For better case life, it's a good idea to set your FL sizing dies based on the shoulder setback of a fired case. Actual headspace on my military CG 6.5s is very close to US NoGo gauge measurement, btw.

The easy way to do this is with the inexpensive Hornady Cartridge Headspace kit.
 
My Winchester M70 PF has a 1 in 10" rifling twist. I also forgot to mention that I have Hornady 162 gr SST's that I can load in the 7x57.

In my CG 6,5x55- I'm hoping Sierra still makes a Spitzer bullet in the 156 gr area, because I know the old Swedish Mausers have a 1 in 8.6" barrel twist.


Hawk
 
Hello hawkeyesatx,

I use and load for the 7x57 since 1972. My only big game rifle for many years. I think the 162 grs SST you have are almost perfect for an all around 7x57 bullet. You can get, easely, 2700 f/s muzzle velocity with many classic powders: all 4350, W760/H414, all 4831 and the Alliant´s R19 and R22.

Good luck!

CF
 
My Winchester M70 PF has a 1 in 10" rifling twist. I also forgot to mention that I have Hornady 162 gr SST's that I can load in the 7x57.

In my CG 6,5x55- I'm hoping Sierra still makes a Spitzer bullet in the 156 gr area, because I know the old Swedish Mausers have a 1 in 8.6" barrel twist.


Hawk
There are several good bullets available from 155 gr to 160 gr. I shoot Woodleigh 160s, excellent accuracy at about 2450 fps. I also have a box of Lapua Mega 155, haven't loaded them up yet. Also, Norma Oryx 156 gr is a great choice. I've wanted to load for those, but can just never seem to find them in stock. And there's the Hornady 160 gr RN.

I also load Hornady ELD-X 143 gr, with stellar accuracy at only about 2500 fps.
 
Hello hawkeyesatx,

I use and load for the 7x57 since 1972. My only big game rifle for many years. I think the 162 grs SST you have are almost perfect for an all around 7x57 bullet. You can get, easely, 2700 f/s muzzle velocity with many classic powders: all 4350, W760/H414, all 4831 and the Alliant´s R19 and R22.

Good luck!

CF

I agree with Claudio. I’ve been loading for the 7x57 almost as long. I have found 160 gr to be an outstanding bullet weight for the cartridge. The exception being Africa with larger, tougher animals inside 200 yards. There I use 175 gr A-Frames.
 
Hello hawkeyesatx,

I use and load for the 7x57 since 1972. My only big game rifle for many years. I think the 162 grs SST you have are almost perfect for an all around 7x57 bullet. You can get, easely, 2700 f/s muzzle velocity with many classic powders: all 4350, W760/H414, all 4831 and the Alliant´s R19 and R22.

Good luck!

CF
Thank you Claudio!

I am definitely going to try the 162's first. It seems you, and others on here use that weight of bullet more, and you can't beat good advice, or actual experience with said bullet weight.
I don't think I'd have a problem getting it to 2700 fps, since it's in a modern, strong commercial action.

You guys are full of knowledge!

Thank you very much!


Hawk
 
There are several good bullets available from 155 gr to 160 gr. I shoot Woodleigh 160s, excellent accuracy at about 2450 fps. I also have a box of Lapua Mega 155, haven't loaded them up yet. Also, Norma Oryx 156 gr is a great choice. I've wanted to load for those, but can just never seem to find them in stock. And there's the Hornady 160 gr RN.

I also load Hornady ELD-X 143 gr, with stellar accuracy at only about 2500 fps.
Thank you for the info!
I greatly appreciate it!


Hawk
 

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