6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

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6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 29 Oct 2018, 8:48 pm

I am loading for a Swede using 143 grain ELD-X and trying to find a node near a decent velocity. The max load for ADI netted a snail paced 2600 fps using Short Cut. At 1.3 grains over I am at 2700. I am looking for at least 2750 but have been told other guys push 140 grain projectiles to 2900 fps. The rifle has a 1:8 Hardy barrel and uses Lapua brass.

Anyone loading the Swede and getting close to 2900 using a 140 grain pill? It doesn't look too far out of reach as I can get 3035 from a 130 grain pill.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 30 Oct 2018, 4:48 am

Get on “terminal ballistic research “ website by kiwi hunter/guide and ballistic researcher Nathan foster . He has lots of useful info on projectiles and different rifle calibers including 6.5x55 . Myself I load 47.2 gn of RE 22 in a model 70 Winchester for good accuracy with 140 Nosler Partition .good for hunting. Dunno the exact speed , going by Nosler load info it’s probably about 2750.my target load in m38 Swede was 44 gr of RE22 with 142 MatchKing that was silly accurate . Speed would’ve been around 2450. I don’t think it’s advisable to push projectiles too fast, 2900 FPS is getting risky even on a modern action IMHO. Best of luck with it, reloader 22 shrunk my group size compared to ar2209 and is my powder for the Swede. Cheers
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 30 Oct 2018, 6:47 am

Thank Rich, I saw on Nathan Forsters site that he indicates 2900 is possible with a 140 Amax. I am not sure how far to push it as that is perhaps two grains up from where I am now.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 30 Oct 2018, 8:26 am

What are you trying to accomplish SCJ ? There are other 6.5’s that can give you more speed and flatter trajectory. One that interests me is 6.5-06. Look into that. Very interesting ballistic, and Hornady make dies. Apparently you use 25-06 brass resized up. And it will get up to 2900-3100 FPS just off the top of my head. Cheers
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 30 Oct 2018, 8:29 am

Or there is a 6.5x55 improved. Not a official Ackley caliber, but it’s been done with his design principles. Whether or not it’s worth the stuffing around that’s up to you. Cheers
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by No1_49er » 30 Oct 2018, 9:47 am

Just had a quick flick through the Berger Loading Manual and their approx max for 140gn is 2800 from a 24" barrel.
Even the 6.5 Rem Mag burning another 6gn powder is only listed as approx max 2900. Pretty much the same for 6.5-284 and 6.5-06, with 140gn proj. And they burn quite a bit more powder.
Not sure you're going to get there with the Swede.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 30 Oct 2018, 11:36 am

Again, of the top of my head, I think the only 6.5 that gets over 2900 FPS with a 140 projectile is 264 win mag or a Weatherby 6.5. For all my hunting uses 6.5x55 is great as it is with warm loads in a modern rifle.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 30 Oct 2018, 6:31 pm

I am trying to exploit the potential of the speed of the Swede. The ADI data has it running just above idle and I want to rev it up to the red line. I just don't know if I can get another 100 fps out of it or 200. If everyone can get their up to 2900 it gives me an indication about the speed I can expect. As I said 3035 fps from a 130 grain projectile with no pressure signs indicates to me that there is still a way to go for a 140 grain at 2700.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by No1_49er » 30 Oct 2018, 7:31 pm

SCJ429 wrote:Anyone loading the Swede and getting close to 2900 using a 140 grain pill? It doesn't look too far out of reach as I can get 3035 from a 130 grain pill.

What chrono' are you using? Can you give some numbers of what you've achieved so far - Max/Min/ES/SD.
I've just had a look through several loading manuals (Berger, Hornady, Sierra, Nosler, ADI, Speer, and others), and the most recent on-line data from the same manufacturers, and don't see anything that gets you remotely close to the velocity you seek. Not even with the 130gn projectiles.
W.R.T. the ADI manual having it run "just above idle", how do you arrive at that statement? Surely they tested their load recommendations and advise us, the users, what they deem to be safe loads?
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by Apollo » 30 Oct 2018, 7:32 pm

Is it that particular ELD-X that you want more speed from or any bullet of similar weight..?? I'm not familiar with what is an ELD-X nor it's design but quite possible is an increase in speed with a different design bullet of the same weight or close to it.

Some may have a shorter bearing length and possibly less drag in the bore yielding an increase in velocity.

I suppose you have thought about a slight powder change, even primer type and seating depth. Lots of things can change the final velocity result.

Sorry, I don't play with a Swede so only thinking outside of the box. I wish you luck.

Just a thought, nothing more.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 30 Oct 2018, 8:01 pm

SCJ429 wrote:I am trying to exploit the potential of the speed of the Swede. The ADI data has it running just above idle and I want to rev it up to the red line. I just don't know if I can get another 100 fps out of it or 200. If everyone can get their up to 2900 it gives me an indication about the speed I can expect. As I said 3035 fps from a 130 grain projectile with no pressure signs indicates to me that there is still a way to go for a 140 grain at 2700.


yeh, well, keep going up in powder till you get preasure signs i guess. i would consider trying different powders. the alliant RE22 is supposed to be THE powder for 140 gn projectiles, whilst keeping preasure lower than other powders. it's supposed to be the closest to the original norma 6.5x55 powder. i got talking to a guy at my local range, shooting a 1913 carl gustav sporter using a sled type rest. this rifle was shooting one hole at 100. he was using three grains OVER max of what adi recommend in 2209 with no preasure signs. great result but after seeing a tikka bolt blow up in a guys face a few weeks ago it's not a path i would take in a 105 year old mauser.my own rifle is a 2013 FN made controlled feed model 70 winchester. i bought this rifle specifically so i could go a bit hotter than old gustav loads, but 1941 husqvanas are quite strong 2750-2800 FPS is the recommended max for saftey and case life. not trying to rain on your parade mate, just wouldn't want to hear things turn out bad. what barrel and action are you using ? :thumbsup: :drinks:
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 30 Oct 2018, 8:15 pm

Most data for the Swede is written with old Mauser actions in mind and keep pressures very low. It makes loading for it a little more tedious to find a load that exploits its potential. I am using a Labradar but previously used a Magnetospeed. Using a 26 inch Hardy barrel and projectiles are naked. I am doing ladder tests with the 143s so no SD or ES to report. The 130s had a 19 ES and 9.5 SD at 3035.

Thanks for the suggestions Apollo, I am not at the point of tuning a load, I am just adding powder to the case to see what it likes to shoot. I was hoping that someone had pushed with case a little and got some speeds out of it. A local guy told me he was at six grains over but I am taking this with a grain of salt.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by marksman » 31 Oct 2018, 6:32 pm

SCJ429 wrote:Most data for the Swede is written with old Mauser actions in mind and keep pressures very low. It makes loading for it a little more tedious to find a load that exploits its potential. I am using a Labradar but previously used a Magnetospeed. Using a 26 inch Hardy barrel and projectiles are naked. I am doing ladder tests with the 143s so no SD or ES to report. The 130s had a 19 ES and 9.5 SD at 3035.

Thanks for the suggestions Apollo, I am not at the point of tuning a load, I am just adding powder to the case to see what it likes to shoot. I was hoping that someone had pushed with case a little and got some speeds out of it. A local guy told me he was at six grains over but I am taking this with a grain of salt.


your dead right that most data for the swede is written with old mauser actions in mind
I run mine an old 98 mauser 6.5x55 at 2900fps with 140gr sierra's but that's mine, I carefully reloaded for it checking pressure at the case head
I also use quickload to get an idea on max pressure before I carefully check it in the real world
it can be done but that does not mean it can be done with all 6.5x55 rifle's,
you sound like you are on it though and know what you are doing :thumbsup:

what do you think of the Hardy barrel :unknown:
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 31 Oct 2018, 7:40 pm

your running your 6.5 in a '98 action MM ? do you know when and where your action is made ? and what powder are you using ? :unknown: :drinks: :thumbsup:
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by marksman » 31 Oct 2018, 8:51 pm

the action is an old refurbished by parker hale thumb cut out on the reciever military model 98
the powder of choice is adi 2209, I did use reloader 22 for a while but cant get hold of it, both ran 140's a bit over 2900 with no pressure in this rifle :drinks:
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by bigrich » 01 Nov 2018, 4:38 am

marksman wrote:the action is an old refurbished by parker hale thumb cut out on the reciever military model 98
the powder of choice is adi 2209, I did use reloader 22 for a while but cant get hold of it, both ran 140's a bit over 2900 with no pressure in this rifle :drinks:


Yeah Mauser 98 is a tank of a action, lot stronger than a 96. According to people in the know, any Swede serial number under 500 000 is a earlier “soft” receiver. The later made Husqvarna actions from 1941 used newer technology in the metallurgy. A husky I had was super accurate. Those older Parker hales built on recycled German Mauser are a good thing . I am suprised to hear your running your projectiles that fast. I’ve got a bit more load development to do on other rifles, then I was gunna hire a chrono and see what I’m getting out of mine. Cheers
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 01 Nov 2018, 9:50 pm

I did do a ladder test with 2209 but was worried about filling the case. Short cut is bulky and at this early stage, about 300 fps faster. I will continue with 2209 this weekend.

Hardy make very good barrels, this one is carbon wrapped. It has shown good potential so far. I have had good luck with Maddco and will stick with them on competition rigs. You don't see many Hardy barrels on the line but more people are starting to get them. I am probably not the best person to ask about how they perform as my experience with them is limited.
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Re: 6.5 x 55 Swede Top Speed

Post by SCJ429 » 11 Nov 2018, 7:32 pm

I ran out of room using 2213SC with a speed of 2840 fps, no pressure signs. I could cram a little more in but I have gone back to 2209. This has gone to 2881 fps, I will continue testing with the goal of 2900 just around the corner. I think that 2950 is likely to be achievable with the ELDX.
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