CZ550 n 6.5x55 Swede - Cast Loads

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  • Last Post 09 October 2021
SkinnerD posted this 08 October 2021

Hi, I have recently acquired a CZ550 in 6,5x55 Swede and am interested in shooting cast in it. Twist is 1:8.66

 

Done a bit of reading and understand the velocity interaction with twist and limitations with cast.  I am not yet casting myself but have acquired some nicely made 143gn Wheelweight lead, Gas Checked Flat points. 

I am in the middle of relocating but caught up here in Auckland NZ in a govt mandated Covid Lockdown - and most of my reloading resources have been moved ahead and are out of reach. Including my Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook. 

Most of the wealth of online info relates to the ex-military rifles. Useful but much of it specific to military rifle characteristics.

At hand I have some ADI  powders: AR22065 (same as H4895) , AR2209 (same as H4350), AR2207 (same as H4198), AR2217 (Close to H1000), and Benchmark2 (same as Hogdon Benchmark). I have a range of other powders but not to hand. 

I'd be interested in hearing from anyone with experience of a factory rifle with a similar twist, their experience with cast as well as any published loads that you can recommend as a starting place. 

I am looking at 1400 to 1800fps for an accurate hunting round to 150-200m.1600fps is something of an accuracy sweetspot in my 30cals.

Despite Lockdown, I do currently have access to an 80m range to do some tests on. And I have with me a portable reloading kit that seems to have grown significantly in the past 7 weeks.

And I'm bored out of my brain so let me have whatever you've got....

thks in advance

John - New Zealand

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Spindrift posted this 08 October 2021

Congratulations with a fine rifle, and a versatile nice cartridge!

I live in Norway, where the 6,5x55 is very popular among both hunters and competitive shooters. I have shot a fair bit of cast with non-military rifles; Rössler Titan alpha, S&L m97dl, Rem 700 custom (Varberger barrel) and a factory rebuilt Krag-Jørgensen target rifle. I shoot a variety of bullets, from 92- 140 grs.

 

Most of the available information on cast in the 6,5x55 (and many bullet designs) relate to the peculiarities of the Swedish mauser. The same peculiarities are probably responsible for the unfounded rumor that the 6,5- bore is more or less unsuitable for cast bullets. A tight-chambered 6,5x55 is another matter. 

Some suitable bullet designs:

-Arsenal moulds 266-92

NOE 266-126 «Grendel»

NOE 266- 140 «Creedmoor»

NOE 268-140 (reasonable meplat. Useable for hunting?)

 

I have never used any of the powders you mention, I have mostly used Vihta N110 (15- 16grs) and N120 (19- 20grs) with lubed GC bullets. The closest would be your variety of H4198, which seems to be somewhere  between the two Vihtavuori- powders. 

 

Load data with powder coated bullets is another matter. I have limited experience with PC/6,5x55 so far, but loads approximating starting loads with jacketed bullets of similar weight, using the faster among listed powders, is promising.

 

Good luck!

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 08 October 2021

keep in mind that the military 6.5 are chambered with a very long throat, and i think that doesn't help the all important

guiding the squishy cast bullet in that first 1/4 inch after it is first fired...  

congrats on your CZ, those are nice.  i suggest that you do a chamber cast which will give you a good start on understanding how to optimize your loads.  some guns with long throats actually need bullets seated out further than will fit in the magazine.

and do keep us apprised of your further adventures ... 

ken

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 08 October 2021

I have one also, but have not shot cast through it yet. Mine does not have a very long throat, so load development with cast will not be difficult. Check your throat to see if it is the same. I also have 550s in 9.3x62 and .308. Always looking for a 7X57 at a reasonable cost. My 6.5x55 and 9.3x62 have Mannlicher stocks.  

My son just bought 2 550s in 6.5x55 w/ Mannlicher stocks and will be selling one.

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys, Good Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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JeffinNZ posted this 08 October 2021

John, I have been shooting my Carcano for a decade now with cast and have found that air cooled wheel weight will stand up to 1500fps but not more than that.  

Some of this might be useful for the Swede also.

Cheers from New Zealand

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SkinnerD posted this 08 October 2021

Hi Jeff, yes I've read/followed your posts/journey with the Carcano with interest.  I apparently have one coming to me from an extended family member but it's "been coming" for several months but who knows lol. 

And hi also to the other respondents thus far. Thanks for your inputs. Its kind of frustrating but also kind of fun to be away from one's year's long collection of loading bench stuff.  Such an addiction.  Anyway I will go ahead and put together a few test rounds and see how they, and my recently operated on right shoulder stand up.  will let you know in a few days. 

 

Here's a pic of the CZ 550 with an older Burris Fullfield 3-9x40 on top

CZ 550 6.5x55 Swedish Mauser

John - New Zealand

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SkinnerD posted this 08 October 2021

Nice collection David. My 7.55mm is an older Interarms Mark X, also lovely to shoot.  It is in an inexpensive synthetic stock which is not so nice to look at but very effective for wet bush walk-arounds.  I have picked up a couple of older M98 walnut stocks for it that I will one day fit as well. Love a good bit of Walnut! More than half the attraction of he CZ's of which I have a 222 527 in the Lux version. 

John - New Zealand

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SkinnerD posted this 08 October 2021

Good info, thanks. Iv'e never made it North as far as Norway, and maybe never will now, but read and view hunting ventures up their with a degree of envy I have to admit.

Here is a pic of the 143gn projectiles I have on hand. Not sure of the mould but possibly an NOE

143gn Cast GC FP _ wheelweight lead

John - New Zealand

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 09 October 2021

Here is a recent photo I sent to my son showing him the difference between the Lux and the American butt stock. I digress from the original discussion, but I just love my 550s and can't wait to find the right 7X57. 


David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys, Good Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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45 2.1 posted this 09 October 2021

keep in mind that the military 6.5 are chambered with a very long throat, and i think that doesn't help the all important

guiding the squishy cast bullet in that first 1/4 inch after it is first fired...  

 

ken

Besides being long, they usually are 0.268" or slightly more. Unless you use properly tempered bullets that are that size, you don't get much guidance unless you play the bullet hardness / pressure match-up game..

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SkinnerD posted this 09 October 2021

Yes the Lux is pretty alright!

John - New Zealand

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SkinnerD posted this 09 October 2021

Ok so here is my Load Dev plan and logic with the above 143gn FP GC Cast bullets.

I have ADI AR2206H powder on hand.  ADI website states that H4895 is made by ADI and is re-branded ADI AR2206H

Hogdon have online one load for the .264 dia 140gn Speer SP with H4895

3.030 COL, Start - 32.5gn/2.305 fps/ 38100 CUP.  Max - 35.8gn/2,493 fps/ 45700 CUP

ADI publish exactly the same data for AR2206H for the same Speer bullet

For Reduced Loads Hogdon recommends H4895 for any cartridge for which data is published by them for that cartridge. 

The recommended formula is for a Start Load at 60% of the Hogdon published Max Load.

Therefore my derived Start would be 60% of 35.8 = 21.48gn

Cross referencing other's experience I found an article by Glen E. Fryxell at Artfulbullet.com where he published his load for his Remington 700 with 1:9 Twist using the Lyman Loverin 266469 140gn RN GC bullet at .266 dia. 26.5gn H4895 giving him 1900+ fps

My twist is a bit faster, and I don't need 1900 fps. More concerned with accuracy then high speed. 

Therefore I plan to load up 4 of each for a 5 string incremental load test starting at 21.5gn and increasing by .5 gn through to 23.5gn.

Brass is fired FL sized and length gauged Norma with Fed 205 primers. Bullets will be seated on my shiny new RCBS Summit Press so that will be an interesting experience also. 

It might be a week or two before I can publish results.  In the meantime, comments/insights are welcome. 

 

John - New Zealand

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Spindrift posted this 09 October 2021

Sound plan!

It looks like you’ve got the NOE266-140 «Creedmoor», maybe. It seems like a very promising bullet for a commercial action like yours. Beautiful rifle, by the way!

I found a (slightly grainy) photo of my 6,5 bullets

 

 

Left to right:

Arsenal molds 266-92 «Spitzer». This light bullet shoots surprisingly well in the 3 rifles I’ve tried it in

NOE266-126-PB. Limited experience. So far, I’ve got 1,5-2MOA 5-shot groups at 100m with light loads

NOE266-126-GC. Shoots well in all 3 rifles I’ve tried it in

NOE268-134-GC. This bullet is resigned for spacious military chambers, and is not ideal for your use

NOE266-140-GC «Creedmoor». Very nice bullet design that shoots well.

NOE268-140-GC. Limited experience. So far, I’m getting around 1,5MOA 5-shot groups @100m. Good meplat for a 6,5.

 

With lubed bullets, my standard size diameter is .266. With powder coated bullets, .265 works just as well. I use the brilliant bushing sizer from NOE.

 

With your bullet, it might pay off to play a little with cartridge length. You have a bullet with a long, gently tapering nose. It has good self-aligning capabilities in the transitional area of the chamber throat, but also a very long, unrelieved bearing surface to be engraved in the rifling. My observation is, such bullets can often benefit from a little bullet jump, instead of the much-used «jam fit».

Best of luck! Please keep us posted on your results!

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SkinnerD posted this 09 October 2021

Hey thanks for that. I made a dummy one up and estimated the seating depth. Chambered it, left the bullet in the lands, knocked it out, observed the scrape, made an adjustment plus a little bit. So it is standing off, not as much as the PPU factory ammo I have but certainly not breathing on the lands.  Not very scientific and I know there are better ways to do it but I will start from there with the short run and see what happens.

 

Back to y'all soon as I can. 

 

cheers

John - New Zealand

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M1fuzz posted this 09 October 2021

Good info, thanks. Iv'e never made it North as far as Norway, and maybe never will now, but read and view hunting ventures up their with a degree of envy I have to admit.

Here is a pic of the 143gn projectiles I have on hand. Not sure of the mould but possibly an NOE

143gn Cast GC FP _ wheelweight lead

Those look like the NOE’s I use with success in my 6.5 Swede. I think it is a good bullet.

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