8X57 vs 8mm-06


September 28, 2009, 08:10 PM
I was just looking in the Nosler 6th edition Reloading Manual. It lists the fastest load for the 8mm-06 with a 200 gr bullet as 2628 fps [max load of IMR4350]. But it lists 3 loads for the 8X57 using the same weight bullet as EXCEEDING that velocity. The fastest for the 8X57 is 2698 fps! The 8-06 has more case capacity, so why does it seem [according to this manual] that the 8x57 is able to out perform 8-06? :confused: Is there anyone out there using the 8-06? What kind of performance [ie: measured velocities] are you getting with it? Seems you should be able to do better than this manual lists without getting over-pressured. Anyone?

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September 28, 2009, 08:20 PM
I'm no reloader, but that quoted max velocity for the 8mm-06 sounds low to me.
It's also entirely possible that as a somewhat obscure round, the 8mm-06 simply doesn't have much published load data. Since the 7.92x57 is a very common round worldwide, and is quite potent, it's not very surprising that it has some pretty hefty published loads for it.

September 28, 2009, 10:03 PM
Given that the -06 case holds about 10% more powder than the x57 case it should be able to produce about 5% more velocity, given all else is equal.

Things are, as you can see in your reloading manual, hardly ever equal. Barrel lengths differ, lands and grooves dims differ, chamber specs differ, freebore, leade, one day the chrony is 10 feet from the barrel, the next it's 9, on Thursday it rained, last week it snowed.

There's just a lot of variables. Even the same gun, shooting the same loads, won't shoot exactly the same from day to day. How was it cleaned, lubed, timing between shots.

You see this kind of "head scratching” contradictory results in reloading manuals all the time. I wouldn’t call it mistakes. I think it’s mostly due to normal real-world variations.

Bottom line: you should get slightly better preformance from the -06 case.

September 29, 2009, 02:31 AM
I never knew how "Cow manure" most reloading manual velocity clams where until I bought a chronograph and took it to the range.

Every gun is a little different, barrel length, chamber configuration can make huge difference in what velocity a load produces. Then add in the Lawyer effect and the reloading manual become little more than general reference guide.

There is a reason why it is call working up a load.

September 29, 2009, 06:20 AM
I load 8x57. I have the Nosler 5th edition, and the 30-06 200gr load is slower than 8x57 200gr load.

The Nosler Accubond is very accurate, more so than some 200gr SMK I loaded.

Varget and H4895 work well in 8x57.

8x57 brass is pretty easy to find.

Sellier & Bellot make good factory 8x57 loads to CIP specs(Europe), which are hotter than SAAMI specs(American).

There are lots of .323 bullets. Nosler, Remington, Barnes, Sierra, etc. Hornady's 125gr SP and JHP are out of run, but can be found several places. They work great too.

Art Eatman
September 29, 2009, 01:42 PM
Remember that the idea for the 8mm'06 came about in the 1940s, when reloading was much cheaper than factory ammo and the '06 brass was essentially free. There wasn't all that much 8mm hunting ammo around in those days. You could get hunting bullets for reloading, but there was not a lot of variety in the selection.

Many of the rechambered rifles were old military critters of uncertain quality, so loading data maximums were probably a trifle lower than might otherwise be the case. Dunno; just a guess.

September 29, 2009, 02:04 PM
Here's some information from another forum. If accurate, Art's reasoning sounds about right.
Back in this part of the country, there were a lot of the old Mausers running around that had been rechambered to 8mm-06. A visit to the old gun store was usually good for a few. These ranged from the very nice (new stock, barrel finished, scope mounted) to the very rough (rifle looked like it spent most of it's time under the truck's seat!)

Most were modified by using the 30-06 reamer (as Barry mentioned) altho it appears that not all were rechambered using a 8mm pilot! It's no wonder that some of those rifles ended up on the gun stores racks!

As far as ammo, at first there was an obvious lack of 8mm bullets. Most of the rounds used in the woods were either milsurp bullets that were pulled from old 8x57 ammo, or cast lead bullets. When the surplus powder and old FMJ combination was used, and the results were poor at best. Who (after all) uses spitzer-pointed FMJ bullets to hunt deer? But careful reloading using a good cast lead bullet was the way to go, and many of the old timers here had been casting bullets for years. The 8mm-06 with cast lead bullets was good enough to get the venison on the table.

It wasn't until aftermarket jacketed 8mm hunting bullets hit the scene that these rifles really started to come into their own. Now you had the potential to load this rifle to rival and often beat the 30-06 in downrange performance. You could use the old aught six cases, and for the most part, you could use comperable 30-06 loads (bullet weight) as a starting point for your own 8mm-06 loads. For handloaders, this was a good deal.

I think that Ackley worked out that the difference between the 8mm-06 and the 8x57 was roughly similar to the differences between the 30-06 and the 308. With careful loading, you can make this wildcat do whatever you want.
But some care must be taken if you convert an old Mauser for this round. Not all rifles chambered in 8x57 were safe even for their parent round, let alone a conversion to the 8mm-06 wildcat.

I guess if it were me, and I absolutely needed to have a 8mm-06, I would take a more modern rifle and an aftermarket 8mm barrel, and have it chambered for this round (or maybe the AI version). Then I could load the b'jesus out of it to my hearts content and not worry about a 60+ year old action deciding it was time to check out!

September 29, 2009, 02:36 PM
The 8mm-06 probably just hasn't had a lot of experimentation done with it, for 50 years.

Ol` Joe
September 29, 2009, 07:55 PM
If you take another look at the data in the Nosler #6 you`ll note they found the 180 gr 8mm-06 to run 100 fps faster then the same bullet in the 8x57.
I tend to believe the reason for the slower velocity in with the 200 gr bullets was due to the limited powders they used in their testing, and the fact they may not be the optimum for that paticular wgt. Lots of variables between the two cartridges and the components/test platform.

September 29, 2009, 10:53 PM
What was the OAL maximum in the 8mm-06? The 8mm-06 may have had the 200 gr. bullet deeply seated, forfeiting performance.

September 29, 2009, 11:27 PM
the 8mm-06 is a 8mmx57 with the chamber reamed to the '06 x63mm chamber but 8mm bullet. so with proper reaming OAL will be longer accordingly and increased capacity. so for given constant chamber pressure you can increase velocity over the x57. with more modern powders you may see some nice gains.
while looking at reamers recently I did spy a 8mm-06 AI reamer... options options options

September 30, 2009, 12:23 AM
With an 8 grain powder advantage, there's no reason that the 8mm-06 cannot have that 100fps advantage with the full range of bullet weights available.
Ol` Joe got it right, because 8mm-06 is not too popular these days with 8x57 ammo and components readily available. That wasn't the case after WW2 and I think load development for the 8mm-06 became stagnate in the latter years and the 8x57 is enjoying a resurgence.
I'm sure modern powders would enhance the difference in case capacity, if one was to do a proper work up as y5e06 mentioned.


September 30, 2009, 10:11 AM
so with proper reaming OAL will be longer accordingly
On a converted mauser, the magazine is the limiting factor rather than the chamber throat. You end up seating the longer bullet(s) deeper to get the cartridge to feed from the magazine.

Actually, I am surprised to see wildcats continuing to live on in reloading manuals. 8mm-06 is not in the 3rd Edition Nosler Manual I have.

September 30, 2009, 12:06 PM
The real reason for the diffrence is that the 8mm06 is a wildcat cartridge with no established pressure limits.

Veresus 8x57 where if you go by CIP standards I believe the pressure celing is actually higher than 30/06

If you want to compare velocities at similar pressures comparing 338/06 to 8mm Mauser may tell you a bit more about what the 8mm06 could really do

September 30, 2009, 12:17 PM
To the original poster - 70fps ain't much.
Shooting thru a chrono for several years and developing loads has taught me that you can have that much variation BETWEEN the same loads when working a round for accuracy.
All should consider any reloading manual as a general reference guide, not gospel.

Ol` Joe
September 30, 2009, 07:25 PM
The real reason for the diffrence is that the 8mm06 is a wildcat cartridge with no established pressure limits.

Veresus 8x57 where if you go by CIP standards I believe the pressure celing is actually higher than 30/06

I have to believe the manuals load to the same pressures as the parent case in most wildcats. CIP calls for a max pressure of the 8x57 as 56550 psi and the 30-06 is rated 58725 psi, both are piezo method. Speer for one, in their #12 claims to and loads to `06 pressures.
I did notice when checking on listed velocities of the 8mmx06 in a couple of manuals there is no data to be found for the 200 gr bullet in them, except for the Nosler book. This tends to lead me to believe the idea of the 200 gr bullet being too long for the 8x57 magazine and requiring it to be seated to a depth that negativly impacts powder capacity. Both Speer and Hornady stopped with 170 gr bullets in the 8mmx06 although they used 200 gr bullets in their 8x57 loads.
The mystery continues....................

October 1, 2009, 07:30 AM
I have to believe the manuals load to the same pressures as the parent case in most wildcats. CIP calls for a max pressure of the 8x57 as 56550 psi and the 30-06 is rated 58725 psi, both are piezo method. Speer for one, in their #12 claims to and loads to `06 pressures.

If I am reaming an 8x57 JS military barrel, extending the chamber 6mm forward and removing that associated volume of metal, I am going to recommend loading the resulting chamber to a lower pressure, say 50,000 max.

Having said that, Accurate Arms uses 60,000 psi as the limit for their load development, albeit using a Douglas test barrel, rather than a milsurp barrel.

So, as the original poster asserts, the 8mm-06 will our perform the 8x57 JS in a purpose built rifle (custom modern barrel, long action). In a converted milsurp, it just means you can use '06 brass and make similar performing cartridge to the original chambering.

In the age of easily mail ordered ammo and/or components for the 8x57 JS, there is no impetus for the 8mm-06.

July 18, 2012, 01:04 PM
I was reading this forum & had to sign up in order to comment. I've been working with an 8mm/06 for the last 8 years, using a mexican m98 and more recently a Vz 24 BRNO m98 w/excellent military barrels. I've used Varget, BLc2, 4895, H4350 and W760. 150 gr Spire point, 175 gr Sierra's, 185 gr PSPCL (Rem) and 200 gr Speer hotcore. BLc2 seemed to be most accurate w/150's at 2975 fps (all loads have been repeatedly chronographed). the 185 grainers shot best w/H4350@ 2775 to 2800 fps. The same with the 200 grain HC's (at the same velocity). I'm not particularly recoil sensitive but the 200 grain bullets are a little on the high side, and hunting in Wyoming for deer, elk & moose, I don't feel they are necessary. I've taken deer antelope and elk with the two rifles and based on lost meat have settled on the 175 grain sierra pro hunter (havn't taken game w/them yet). The two loads I've worked up are (H4350 @ 2875 fps). This load has been grouping under .5" @ 100 yds. The other is (w/W760 @ 2950 fps). This load has been grouping under 1" @ 100 yds. These loads have only been used in the BRNO m98 (I rebarreled the mexican m98 to 6.5X55). I feel the 8mm/06 is a bit much for deer & antelope (I'm a meat hunter). I'll not list charge weights or CAOL's as these loads are 1 grain below the MAX I worked up w/my particular rifle(s). The loads showed no signs of (EXCESSIVE) pressure. Keep your shots reasonable and the 8mm/06 negates the need for a super magnum. My reason for building them is nostalga, and because I like a good M98 Mauser as a hunting rifle. If your a hunter though, a 6.5 or larger will take whatever big game you need to (if you use the right bullet).

July 18, 2012, 02:47 PM
Welcome to THR, critterpopper.

The VZ-24 is a fine strong rifle, and I always appreciate someone taking the time to post their findings of loads that they have tested. The 8MM-06 generally will produce around 100fps more than a standard 8x57 with the same bullet weight. It's all about selecting the right bullet for the job. The new bonded bullet from Nosler will expand without ruining the meat.

Here's a site with some potent 8x57 data developed in a 98 Mauser, for comparison.



Vern Humphrey
July 18, 2012, 03:11 PM
Pressures for the .30-06 are low because of "low number" Springfields. The manuals use .30-06 pressures for the 8mm-06.

In any modern rifle -- including "high number" Springfields, the .30-06 (and the 8mm-06) can be loaded to .300 Win Mag pressures -- manufacturers use the same rifle for both .30-06 and .300 Win Mag cartridges.

July 18, 2012, 09:01 PM
I too have been reloading the 8x57 for several years now in older mausers, a duv-41 German, a Yugo M24/47 and a Yugo M48A.
The M24/47 is scoped and has the best barrel, and so all this testing was done with it. The action is 1/4" shorter than a standard M98, So the 8mm-06 option is out the window on that one.
My loads are based on published load data as I don't have a crono, and I never load to maximum. My best results with 175 Sierra's were 1-1/2" with IMR 3031 & IMR 4007ssc @ 2600 & 2700fps respectively, 180 grn Nosler Ballistic tips grouped 1-5/8" with RE-15 @ 2600fps, but my most accurate loads are with H4895 and Speer 200grn hot core's @ 2500fps = 1"(all loads @ 100 yards).
No signs of pressure with any of these; I'm sure I could push them more but I don't see the need. These are plenty powerful hunting loads, although I've yet to take an animal with the 8x57 mauser(maybe this year). Never tried 150's but the Hornady 195's look interesting, to my way of thinking the 8mm shines with heavier bullets, If I'm going to shoot 150's I'll just use my 7mm mauser. Also I have never shot factory loads or surplus ammo in any of my mausers. If I ever get a VZ-24 or a russian capture M98 I will probably do the 8mm-06 just because I can!!

July 19, 2012, 10:51 AM
The 8mm-06 is slightly 'overbore' compared to the 8x57 so in order to get higher velocities, the 8-06 would have to use quite a bit more powder to accomplish this. It's a case of diminishing returns but the 8-06 can be loaded to have a higher initial velocity.
The reloading manuals almost always use custom match barrels fitted to "bolted down" receivers to achieve maximum accuracy PLUS the companies are subject to lawsuits if their data results in a mishap. Therefore, they always err on the safe side to protect their butts.

July 19, 2012, 03:19 PM
The 8mm 06 always struck me as a solution in search of a problem. The cartridge seems to have been developed in the 1950s as a solution to the supposed lack of 8X57 ammunition to feed the plethora of surplus 8X57 Mausers. The story was that people could just have their Mauser rechambered to 8mm 06 and then cram an 8mm bullet into a 30-06 cartridge and they were all set. An alternative story is that it offered a sort of “Improved 8X57”.

This never made sense to me as surplus 8X57 was readily available in the 1950s and since the 8mm 06 is a reloading proposition anyway, why not just reform 30-06 cartridges to 8X57? Also, reloading the 8X57 overcomes the weakness of the domestic hunting loads.

The claim that 8mm 06 is about 100 fps faster is probably true. Increased cartridge capacity generally increases velocity in a given bore size. However, is it worth the possible issues of feeding a longer cartridge from the magazine? Also, the rifle is now chambered for a wildcat and it must be reloaded for.

I own an 8X57 and load for it. The 8X57 is an under rated cartridge. When loaded to its potential it is a powerful and accurate cartridge. I have, mostly out of curiosity, formed 8X57 cases from 30-06. It’s a simple operation. The cases worked fine, so much for the excuse of a lack of available 8X57 cases to load.

If I came across a very nice 8mm 06 and if it was offered at an extremely good price, I would not be averse to owning one. That said, I would never build one or seek one out just to have one. I just don’t see the advantage to it.

July 20, 2012, 06:26 PM
Nosler's website has them closer 2628fps to 2635fps. It's obvious that the 8-06 has more capacity than the 8x57. I think the counter-intuitive velocities have a lot more to do with the individual guns/barrels nosler used to create the data than the data/pressure/CIPvsSAAMI factors.

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