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Which cartridge would you buy a rifle for?

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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings!

I've recently posted a topic about the choice of cartridge for my next rifle. I am currently considering ONLY these three: 6.5x55 Swedish Mauser, .260 Remington, and 7mm-08. I'm curious about how many people would choose each.

Just a few things before you vote: This cartridge choice is for a rifle to replace a recently sold .308 Win. rifle, I don't need EXACTLY the same performance... but I am definitely set on one of these three calibers. I am using this rifle to compliment a .243 Win. that I already own. I also handload, so please don't vote based on scarcity of factory loaded ammo.

Thanks in advance!
Bawko
 

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Interesting that all three of your choices fall within the same niche as the .243. And any one of the three are better at what they do than the .243. One of the things you might consider is that the .243 can be converted to a .260 or a 7-08 by a simple rebarrel job. I have changed .243's to both .260 and 7-08's. I have said, somewhat tongue in cheek, that the only reason to buy a .243 was to rebarrel it to a 7-08.

My choice was a 7-08 because I have used it a lot, going back to when it was still a wildcat, and I do believe it is one of the best rifle choices for deer sized game and under. If it is your only rifle, it can be stoked up for elk hunting as well. When I had my first 7-08 made up, I had a ton or two of .243 brass. I merely took the resizing ball out of my die, put it in a drill motor, and ground and buffed a greater degree of taper in the nose of it. I then lubed the inside of the necks and run them thru the 7-08 die. Ergo, 7-08 brass. I would imagine the same would be true with .260.
I am sure you know, I wouldn't reform any .243 brass into .260 or 7-08 whilst I still had a .243 on the premises.
:D
 

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You have picked three great deer cartridges as the short list to chose from. Of the three, I only have experience with the 6.5X55. It is a superb whitetail deer round. Both my son and I have used it for years with complete satisfaction on shots both short and long. The result has always been venison on the table. :grin: I suspect the story would be the same with the other two cartridges also.

Your choice may come down to which rifle type and action length you prefer. That may be the deciding factor more than the cartridge itself since all three are so similar in performance. Of the three, the 7-08 will be the one that is most widely available. For me, though, the Swede is a classic cartridge that is perfectly suited to the task of hunting medium big game.
 

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A hunter uses 7mm-08

Nobody uses .260

A true rifleman uses 6.5x55

Go with the swede you would be amazed at the respect people at the range will give you when they find out what you're shootin.
 

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Krochus said:
A hunter uses 7mm-08

Nobody uses .260

A true rifleman uses 6.5x55

Go with the swede you would be amazed at the respect people at the range will give you when they find out what you're shootin.
Couldn't have said it better.[/color] Lawdog
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I want one of each, but I chose the .260. I liked the ballistics and recoil.

I think it resembles the Chevy, Ford, Dodge debate.

pepaw
 

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Mangulator,

I couldn't be any happier with my .260.

I think the BC of the .260 140 grain may give it the edge, especially for longer ranges.

pepaw
 

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Bawko

How many of these "Which would you choose" threads have you got going? Well, regardless....here is my take on two of the four calibers you've mentioned in the various threads.

I used to own and handload a 6.5x55 and it is definitely fine caliber. However, I voted for the 7mm-08, which I now own, primarilly because there are a larger variety of bullets available to load, and with the exception of the 160Grn RN for the 6.5 you have the option of loading a little heavier bullets in the 7MM-08.

Also, the 6.5's generally have a long throat to accomidate the long 160Grn RN. So when loading lighter grn bullets, it's almost impossible to seat them close to the lands.

The 7mm-08 on the other hand has a shorter throat and I can load most bullets .010 off the lands. However, with some longer, sleeker and heavier "pointy type" bullets you sometimes run into the issue of haveing to seat the bullet deeper in the case for it to fit in the magazine and this sometimes limits the amount of powder you can load.

I've never owned or shot a 260 or 270 so I can't comment on either of those calibers.

Both the 6.5x55 and the 7MM-08 are excellent calibers and you really couldn't go wrong with eather. I'd put my money on the 7MM-08 though.

firstshot
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Make your first shot count!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
firstshot,

Actually, I only technically have 1 thread + this poll open on this topic... I posted the original thread before I sold my .308 Win. Remington 700 last week, which changed my requirements a bit. After selling the .308, I reconsidered my requirements and posted a new thread with my new caliber options. After hearing so many arguments for 6.5x55 and 7mm-08, I decided to post this "poll" thread to see how many people liked each (as well as the .260), to give me a better idea of what the relative popularity of the various cartridges I was considering would be. I won't let the result of this poll make my decision for me, I have several other factors to consider... but it is another piece of information that will help with my decision. In any case, thanks for the reply to the poll!

Best wishes,
Bawko
 

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I have 3 Swedish M96 mausers in 6.5x55 and a Remington Classic so I'm a bit biased. It's hard not to like a rifle with mild recoil, shoots bullets accurately that range from 85 to 160grs. I took my moose with it in Northern Ontario last year using the Sierra 160gr. SPSP (round nose to me). I think my next rifle might be a 7x57. Best wishes.

Cal - Montreal
 

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I currently own none of the mentioned calibers, but voted 7mm-08 as I've long wanted one. I do plan to pick one up in the near future. IMHO, the 7s got a lot going for it and would be hard to beat.

Part of the decision is whether you want a long action or a short action. At this point in time, I prefer the short actions.

From what I've heard/read/researched, the .260 makes for a fine deer cartridge and it can be FACTORY loaded to higher pressures unlike the 6.5x55 which the factories keep more on the mild side since theres a ton of old mausers out there in this caliber.

To get the best from the .260 & the Swede, plan on handloading.
 

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Atomic Chicken said:
firstshot,

Actually, I only technically have 1 thread + this poll open on this topic... I posted the original thread before I sold my .308 Win. Remington 700 last week, which changed my requirements a bit. Best wishes,
Bawko
No problem, I just wanted to make sure I was responding to the right thread. Looks like I got the right one.

Here are a couple of links to the Remington and Federal sites that allow to compare the ballistics of various factory loads. Although they do come in handy at times, in this situation they will only confirm what biglmbass said about the factories keeping the 6.5x55 loads fairly light. Even so, at the Remington site, you can compare the 140Grn Pointed Soft Point Core-Lokt in all three calibers ( 6.5x55, 260, and 7MM-08 ).


Remington
http://www.remington.com/NR/exeres/...AB18499B6A}&NRQUERYTERMINATOR=1&cookie_test=1

Federal
http://www.federalcartridge.com/default.asp?pg=27&firearm=1

Good luck with your decision.

firstshot
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Make your first shot count!
 

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Give me one of each! :D

I chose the .260 as my 6.5 rifle and my .280 for my 7mm rifle. Both fill nice little niches in my gun safe.
 

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for you, I picked a 7-08, since you have a 243, it would be the most diverse pair of guns for you, of the choice you narrowed it to.

For me, I would rather have the swede for the nostalgia
 

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Of the choices, the swede is my favorite. This isn't very fair though as I don't have a .260 or a 7-08. I do have a few 6.5's and 7X57's though, they are very fine rifles as well. I just have a thing for the old time tested cartridges. They work and they work very, very well....
 

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Krochus said:
A hunter uses 7mm-08

Nobody uses .260

A true rifleman uses 6.5x55

Go with the swede you would be amazed at the respect people at the range will give you when they find out what you're shootin.
That's a pretty poor excuse for selecting a rifle. Any time spent worrying about what others may think regarding your choice is time wasted. Choose it based on factors that matter, like recoil, caliber, cartridge, rifle selection and availability, cost to purchase and shoot, availability and selection of ammo or load data, trajectory, energy, intended application, etc. If you choose a rifle based on what others think, you haven’t earned any respect, you’ve just become a sheeple.

IMHO.
 

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The US factories are never going to load the 6.5x55 to its potential. Although most folks think of it as the Swedish cartridge, the fact is it is a Union cartridge, and the Norwegians chose a Krag model for their service rifle. I believe the Danes did also, but their rifles were all confiscated by the Nazis, so we won't run across any in the possession of the general public. The Model 96 Mauser is probably quite capable of a steady diet of hot loads, at least Norma thinks so. The Krag would most likely suffer over prolonged exposure to even Norma loads, but the Norse rifleman is a dedicated handloader. Nevertheless it just isn't capable of doing much more than the .260. When two cartridges, one using the .308 case and the other using basic. ?x57 Mauser brass, are compared there is more difference between the indivudual rifles involved, than the cartridges loaded to the same pressure levels. The 6.5x55 holds within half a grain as much powder as the 6.5x57, so how could it be any different? Don't take my word for it, Pet Loads author Ken Waters noticed the same thing while developing his series for Handloader Magazine. :D [/i]
 
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