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Old 12-09-2009, 2:01 PM
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7x57 7x57 is offline
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Default 7x57 loading data for modern actions

I got a visitor question asking about load data for 7mm Mauser in modern actions. I can't imagine why he asked me. My answer was too long for a visitor message, so I'm posting it here.

Hi, voere. I have always had the opposite problem--I have to avoid data for a modern action in my 1893 Mauser. You're situation is nice, because there isn't a safety issue involved: you can always use the data for surplus Mausers. It's equivalent to loading light, a recommended procedure for target work anyway. Your brass will last a lot longer too.

Anyway, your problem is you don't own enough manuals. Buy more. I don't either, but I can cheat and use the loadbook (which compiles the sections for one rifle from many manuals). My copy says these manuals load to SAAMI pressures (for milsurp):

Loads to SAAMI pressures: Nosler*, Sierra, Lyman, RCBS?, Accurate powders, Alliant powders, Hodgdon, Scot?, Winchester powders?, Vihtavuori, Barnes**

While these load to modern pressures:

Hornady, Speer (but the starting loads are listed as OK for pre-98 Mausers)

? Means I had to deduce that they use SAAMI pressures, usually by the absence of discussion (for legal as well as ethical reasons anyone loading over the conservative industry standard can be expected to make the point very clear).

* Nostler's warning sounds to me like lawyer boilerplate about milsurp rifles in poor condition, not a warning that the data was worked up above SAAMI pressure.

** The Barnes loads seemed hot to me when I tested them so I stuck with their beginning loads this year when hunting the lead-free zone.

So anyway you can use Speer and Hornady data, as long as you use their bullets or stick with bullets that can substitute for them. It is useful to know that the SAAMI pressures for old rifles are 46,000CUP/51,000psi (be very clear on the units because the numbers are easy to confuse--50,000 CUP is definitely not for old rifles). Loads with higher pressures are for modern actions.

I also note that you shouldn't trust information off the internet, such as what I just typed, without verifying it. But fortunately your situation is the safer one--I'm pretty careful about what I feed my 106-year old action.

If you're worried about a particular bullet substitution, try calling Sierra. They'll cheerfully answer your question no matter whose bullets they are.


What do you need guns for if you are going to send your children, seven hours a day, 180 days a year to government schools? What do you need the guns for at that point?-- R. C. Sproul, Jr. (unconfirmed)

Originally Posted by bulgron View Post
I know every chance I get I'm going to accuse 7x57 of being a shill for LCAV. Because I can.
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