6.5x55 Swede testimonials

megastink

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2011
Messages
526
Location
Southeast PA
After some thought, I think I'm going to rebarrel my Mauser 98 to 6.5x55 Swede from 8mm-06 (its current chambering). Or rather, I'll have my smith do it. I'd like to hear form people who shoot this caliber. I'm thinking of going with a 24" Heavy Sporter with a 1:8 twist for heavier pills. My goal is a lightweight (sub 8lb scoped) rifle to sling around my shoulder and walk around the deer woods. Shots out to 500 yards are possible, and I believe that setup will provide me my desired results.


I'd just like to hear from other hunters about their experience shooting game at range (over 300 years) with the Swede. I also might take this Black Bear hunting here in PA and I want to make sure it'll do the job. I currently hunt with a Savage .270 but she's a little heavy to lug around IMO (9-ish lbs scoped).

Thank you in advance.
 
Last edited:

Quintus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2013
Messages
916
Yo will be happy with the Swede. Very easy to shoot, great bullet selection, easy to load for. Sounds alot like the 6.5 Man-Bun! We have killed bears and deer out to 400 with it and it is perfect for that job with most bullets you might want to shoot. Definitely go with the 8 twist.
 

Rardoin

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
213
Location
South Louisiana
If you want to run the heavies consider an AI version of the 6.5 x55. I have a Bob Jourdan AI and it is great. I ran a 142gr bullet at 2940fps. I have 15+ firings on some Lapua brass and the primer pockets are still fine. You will be able to run a 150gr class bullet at the mid 2800's with single based powder or into the low 2900's with some of the double based options. Brass is cheap tough and, usually, plentiful.
 

MagnumManiac

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2008
Messages
3,150
I had one of the Swedish military ‘match’ rifles, a Carl Gustav built Mauser ‘96 Sporterised model. Modified for scope use.
It was one of the most accurate rifles I have ever had in a non-custom.
It was primarily used at ranges from 300-600 and with the Swedish match ammo, a 139gr FMJ Spitzergloss bullet, it held 1/4 MoA.
I have a yearning to build another, but I have too many projects at the moment, will have to wait.
The 6.5x55 is very accurate, if it was marketed like the Creedmoor, it would be more popular than the new Hornady 6.5x47 copy.

Cheers.

P.S. I have the 6.5x47 too, the 6.5x55 was consistently more accurate than that is, that Swedish match ammo with Berden primers was exceptionally accurate, true match ammo in my opinion.
 

Hoss50

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2019
Messages
317
Location
Arizona
DO IT!!!

I love 6.5x55 Swede. My go to rifle is a CZ 550 with full length stock in 6.5x55. In 2018 it downed my good size 4x4 mule deer at about 250yrds with 1 clean shot. It also downed my buddies forkhorn muley that year at about 40 yards. Last year it dropped my cow elk at about 175yrds with 1 clean shot. My buddy also killed his cow elk at the same time with his new to him Howa 1500 in 6.5x55 at about 160yrds. He took a couple extra shots, but it wasn't the rifles fault...

All the above fell to 135gr Berger Classic Hunter bullets hand loaded at probably about 2600fps. My load isn't terribly fast, but it has been accurate and deadly.

The recoil is very manageable with the round, and if you choose to hot rod it you can just Ackley Improve it to get some more FPS.
 

RT2506

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 10, 2008
Messages
2,143
I have a few military Swede Mausers in 6.5x55 and they of some of the most accurate rifles ever. I have one that some Bubba had already started hacking on that I could get for almost nothing over 20 years ago that I turned into a hunting rifle. It was a 96 with the 29" barrel which I left alone except for re-crowning it. I cut the straight bolt handle off and made a new one designed for use with a scope and welded it on. I drilled and tapped it for Leupold mounts and added a Bold slide safety adjustable trigger that I set at 2 1/2 lbs. I found a composite stock and glassed it. The reason that I left the barrel long was because with the small ring Mauser your limited safely to 46000 CUP. With loads that the Accurate Powder manual list as under 46000 CUP with that long barrel you can still get some high velocity. With 120s 3000 fps and 140s 2800 fps. At the time I was doing crop damage control on a big farm in NC with my buddy. I got to do some extensive testing of the rifle's capabilities with numerous bullets. Let me just say it did not matter which of the hunting bullets I used results were awesome on deer from almost point blank to a touch over 500 yards which is as far as I attempted shots. I mainly used Sierra 120 Pro Hunter and 140 Game King, 120 Nosler BT, 140 Hornady interlock. Of these bullets If I just wanted to choose just one it would be the 140 Sierra Game King. 45 grs AA4350 pushed it just a touch over 2800 fps on average and it shot bug holes at 100 yards and well under MOA farther out and killed like the hammer of Thor. I have not tried it in the 6.5x55 but from my experience using it in my 264 Win mag I believe the 130 gr Nosler Accubond would be about perfect for elk on down as a one bullet do it all. You can up the pressure (loads) using that Mauser 98 action quite a bit. With the 24" barrel you can match the velocity of that looooog barrel 96 but it will take you more powder. Be advised that much of the load data that you find for the 6.5x55 is limited to the 46000 CUP which is a ***** cat in a Mauser 98 action. Just as a side not the first 6.5x55 rifle I ever saw was one an old fellow from my church used to hunt with. It was the Swede carbine that had been sported back about the early 1960s. It had a metric measurement of barrel length that I know now was just under 18" which by the letter of the law now is against the law unless you were to go through the short barrel rifle license rout. He used Norma ammo and I think it was 156 or 160 gr. round nose. That was a short, light, easy handling perfect deer or anything else woods rifle.
 

SavageHunter11

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2017
Messages
525
Location
East River South Dakota
After some thought, I think I'm going to rebarrel my Mauser 98 to 6.5x55 Swede from 8mm-06 (its current chambering). Or rather, I'll have my smith do it. I'd like to hear form people who shoot this caliber. I'm thinking of going with a 24" Heavy Sporter with a 1:8 twist for heavier pills. My goal is a lightweight (sub 8lb scoped) rifle to sling around my shoulder and walk around the deer woods. Shots out to 500 yards are possible, and I believe that setup will provide me my desired results.


I'd just like to hear from other hunters about their experience shooting game at range (over 300 years) with the Swede. I also might take this Black Bear hunting here in PA and I want to make sure it'll do the job. I currently hunt with a Savage .270 but she's a little heavy to lug around IMO (9-ish lbs scoped).

Thank you in advance.
I've got a circa 1900 Gustav M96/38 Swedish Mauser in the 6.5x55 round and I love that gun. I put it in a nice Boyd stock and replaced the rear sights with a rail to mount a scout scope (it's all 100% reversible too). I've shot 2 deer with it and a coyote and I have no complaints. I definitely love the round and the gun. I've even considered getting out of the mil-surplus game and selling off my small collection (even my M1 Garand) but I think the Swede will always stay.
 

mongo4567

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
66
Location
Pflugerville, TX
I built a budget custom on a Mauser action after falling in love with the round in a few milsurps (Swede 96,38,41). One of my go to hunting rifles is a Tikka t3 in 6.5x55. I've only taken game out to 150 yards or so. It was devastating on a large boar and some deer. It is a really great round that I think of as a 260 or 6.5 cm in a different wrapper. Factory loadings are somewhat limited....downloaded for safety.
 

hawg chaser

Active Member
Joined
Dec 25, 2011
Messages
25
Location
central PA
I have a tikka t3 hunter in 6.5x55. It shoots everything tried in it under 1/2 inch. The 6.5x55 is deadly on deer out past 400 yards. I've never witnessed an attempt on a bear beyond 250 yards with one, but at that distance it was lights out. This was all in PA too.
 

extremesolo

Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
Messages
20
Location
Carlisle, PA
I have a Tikka T3 superlite in 6.5x55 and it is one of my favorites. I load mine with the 129 grain hornady interlok and use it mainly here in the mountains of central PA. The bullet has worked wonderfully on whitetails. With the modern Tikka action it can be loaded like a .260 as far as pressure goes and the handling and accuracy of the Tikka SL it is a really nice package.
 

P7M13

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2016
Messages
817
Location
Orygun
Two Swedes. Bought the first, a Remington 721. Loved it so much, bought a 2nd. Upgraded them both to 6.5x55 BJAI, also known as the 6.5x55 Improved 40°. No muzzle brake needed, piece of cake to load for, brass is easy to find and so far lasts a long time.
I passed up a Tikka Hunter in 6.5x55 that was on a used gun shelf, still kicking myself for not snagging it, but at $675 I thought I could do better.
If I had only one cartridge to use from all in my safe, it would be the Swede, followed by 7mm-08.
If you want to run the heavies consider an AI version of the 6.5 x55. I have a Bob Jourdan AI and it is great.
x10
 

Eric Alexander

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2015
Messages
109
After some thought, I think I'm going to rebarrel my Mauser 98 to 6.5x55 Swede from 8mm-06 (its current chambering). Or rather, I'll have my smith do it. I'd like to hear form people who shoot this caliber. I'm thinking of going with a 24" Heavy Sporter with a 1:8 twist for heavier pills. My goal is a lightweight (sub 8lb scoped) rifle to sling around my shoulder and walk around the deer woods. Shots out to 500 yards are possible, and I believe that setup will provide me my desired results.


I'd just like to hear from other hunters about their experience shooting game at range (over 300 years) with the Swede. I also might take this Black Bear hunting here in PA and I want to make sure it'll do the job. I currently hunt with a Savage .270 but she's a little heavy to lug around IMO (9-ish lbs scoped).

Thank you in advance.
You might consider the 6.5-284. Same length as 6.5x55 but with a more efficient case, more capacity, not limited to the lower pressures, and has a solid reputation for accuracy. It’s like a modern, wider 6.5x55 that will easily give you 200+fps over the Swede so it will drop less and hit harder.
 
Top