Wild Bunch Boards > Reloading for Wild Bunch

6.5x55 revisited

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Jorge:
What would be a good choice, and source of cast bullets to load for my Swedish Mauser?  I am not interested in casting my own bullets.  Are heavier bullets better (140 gr vs 160 gr.)?
thanks

Garrison Joe:
Well, not casting limits your choices a LOT.

First, find out what your  barrel groove diameter is by slugging it.  You can look up instructions all over the internet or the SASS Wire for how to do that.

Second, find a bullet supplier who is willing to size at or up to 2 thousandths over groove diameter.  Take a reasonable guess at the slug that will work best.  I like the Lyman 266673 design myself (in a M96 Swedish rifle made in 1911), which runs about 150 grains in #2 alloy, for me.   I like a bullet at about 16 Brinnell hardness or slightly higher.  If you can find a feller who lubes with the older NRA (ALOX) soft formula lube it will usually shoot  better than the newer hard wax lubes.  Also reasonable choices for a design that you may find commercial casters making - RCBS 6.5-140 gr-SIL, NOE 270-163 gr-FN, or a Saeco 62264 (140 gr). 

Third, load with 2400, 5744, Reloder 7 or 4198 powder so that you get 1600 FPS on the chronograph.  Beg borrow or steal a chrono, it's that important with the 6.5 Swede.  Because of the VERY FAST twist rate set for 156 grain military FMJ bullets (long for their diameter) for a muzzle velocity of 2,379 FPS, the barrels are touchy with "normal" looking cast bullets.  Much over 1600 FPS on a cast bullet in the Swede, and most folks can't keep the bullet shooting tight groups.  And you want a kinda skinny nose on the slug so you don't have to seat the slug base deeper than the base of the neck - bore riding designs can have chambering problems.

When you get all the right parts together, a cast bullet load in the 6.5 Swede is a sweet heart.   Otherwise, it can be a heart breaker.

For sources I'll start you with a list of some potential suppliers:

Montana Bullet Works - https://www.montanabulletworks.com/product-category/rifle/?filter_caliber=264
Gardners - http://gardnerscache.com/
Moyers - www.moyerscastbullets.com/rifle.html
Western - http://westernbullet.com/2665mmcaliber.html

But, I endorse none of them specifically, as I cast my own.





Jorge:
Thanks for the info.  I will start working on the load.

Happy Jack:
IF Montana Bullet works has a bullet you can use I highly recommend them. They are about the only commercial caster that sells bullets of match quality. I have bought both 38-55 and 45-70 bullets from them over the years.

Garrison Joe:
And, several BAMM shooters use bullets from Norm Purcella - see this thread of yours a few months ago:

http://www.sassnet.com/wildbunch/forum/index.php?topic=2236.0

I do not KNOW if he makes any 6.5 mm bullets.  They are not-so-much a common stock item.

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