Hotter loads for 7x57 ?


March 26, 2011, 07:18 AM
I've just bought a Heym rifle in 7x57. All the reloading data on the powder manufacturers websites shows slower speeds than for a 7-08. Heym factory test their rifles to 110,000psi so I know the rifle has a strong action.The 7x57 is the parent case for the 6mm Remington which has equally high pressures as the 7-08.Thus with the higher case capacity of the 7x57, I see no reason why I should not be able to get speeds at least equal to the 7-08.I'm not trying to make my 7x57 into a 7mm rem mag I just want it to equal or best the 7-08. I understand that with lots of old military actions around , for legal reasons hotter loads cannot be published. Therefore I am not asking for recommendations , I just want to know what other people are loading in their 7x57s and what speeds they are getting .I only own 1 gun and thus I am targeting 3100fps+ with 120gr nosler BTs for foxes and Roe deer , 2900fps+ with 140gr nosler BTs for Red deer and 2700fps+ 160gr nosler partition for Wild boar and moose. Anyone doing these or something similar in their 7x57s?
many thanks Steve

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March 26, 2011, 09:36 AM
Welcome to THR, heym_sr20.

I do not own a 7x57 rifle, but do have a custom 6.5x55 in a M98 Mauser, and I push the envelope beyond the standard loads offered.

Several loads at Reloadersnest offer the potential for velocities at or near the levels that you seek. Quite often, top velocities will not be the most accurate, but if you work up the loads, paying attention to your rifle's bolt opening and extraction of the fired cases, you should be able to select a load that's accurate and potent. Sticky opening and extraction are to be avoided, and it's all about knowing your rifle's limits.
I'm guessing that you have the SR20 bolt version.


March 26, 2011, 01:47 PM
"Heym factory test their rifles to 110,000psi so I know the rifle has a strong action."

If you want hotter loads for any case just cram more powder in it. Not treally safe tho, and it's due to the limits of the cases more than the pure strength of the action. (You got good insurance for your family's sake?)

March 26, 2011, 02:17 PM
I have a Winchester M70 in 7X57 and thus far I have worked up a load that shoots really well with a 120 Grain Nosler BT. The velocity for this load is 2900 fps which is under what you are looking for, my three round group measured .70" @ 100 yards. I do not know if you reload but here is my data in case you care to try it.

Winchester Case
Federal 210M Primer
120 Grain Nosler BT
44 Grains H4895

March 26, 2011, 03:57 PM
heym_sr20, your game selection indicates that you may call home in the UK or a European country. You may be using Vihtavuori powders and I have included data for the 7x57 from the VV site.
I like Nosler bullets too, and recommend the newer bonded bullets over the more expensive Partitions, as they offer a better ballistic coefficient and good expansion.
I have included a link to Nosler's site as well.

The online load sites contain the latest up to date data available. For me, printed manuals are good for reference, but manufacturer/distributor web sites have the most current data, and they are what I use.


March 26, 2011, 08:44 PM
When I had an interarms mark-x in 7x57 I too gave up on and became frustrated with the milktoast data provided from the usual suspects.

WARNING I take no responsibility for anyones use of the remainder of this post.

My solution was simply to start using 7mm08 data. The case strength is the same with the x57 having more capacity thus slightly reducing the pressures of the 7mm08 loads used

Tapatalk post via IPhone.

March 28, 2011, 08:16 PM
I have this old reloading handbook and perhaps this will be of help regarding the information you are searching for. The following load data was tested using a Mauser 95 with a barrel length of 29" with a 1-10 twist.

120 Grain Jacketed Bullet
Max Load: IMR 4895 45 grains
Velocity - 3067 fps
Starting Load is 41 grains
Velocity 2824 fps

139 Grain Jacketed Bullet
Max Load: IMR 4895 43 grains
Velocity - 2881 fps
Starting Load is 38 grains
Velocity 2564 fps

As always start with the suggested starting load data and work your way up.

March 29, 2011, 12:46 PM
Strong rifles chambered for cartridges with large Boxer primer pockets and case heads based on the 1889 7.65x53mm Mauser cartridge have loose primer pockets as the real limit in a work up.

This includes; 22-250, 243, 6mm Rem, 250 Savage, 257 Roberts, 25-06, 260 Rem, 6.5x55 [US brass], 270, 7mm-08, 7x57mm, 280, 300Sav, 308, 7.62x51mm, 30-06, 8x57mm, 338F, 358, and 35W.

In Quickload terms, that is ~ 72kpsi.
Backing off a safety margin of ~ 4% powder charge for an individual rifle, that will be ~ 67kpsi.

the old dog
April 12, 2011, 01:27 AM
G'day Shooters,
I've done a fair bit with my Steyr M98 26" MAB No5 Barrell in 7 x 57. The best groups, sub 1/2" @100m, so far have been with either Win 760 or IMR4350, but we can't get IMR Down Under anymore. Nick Harvey's Practical Reloading Manual said with 154-160gn start off at 44gns Win 760 and build up to 51gns which if you check against Hogden or Winchester is above their max loads. Be very careful here!! Start low and build up in gradual increments, checking for pressure signs.

My pet load in my rifle is a 154gn Hornady SST Balistic Tipped Boat Tail pushed by 51 gns Win 760 with a Winchester case and CCI Large Rifle Magnum primer which chronographs around 2900fps. Don't try it in yours!! Start low and grow slow. Lest ye be using a length of water pipe on the bolt handle to open it and can deprime your cases by tipping them base down so they fall out.

I do like the Win 760 because it meters through the thrower nicely and seems to be pretty un-touchy. But if you can get it I'd be having a play with the IMR4350 too.
the old dog

Bwana John
April 12, 2011, 02:09 AM
I have a Rem M-700 Mnt Rifle in 7mm x 57mm Mauser.

My favorite deer hunting load is 140 Nosler Ballistic tip, and 51 gr H4350 @ 2850 fps.

I have a older Hodgen reloading manual with a section just for modern 7mm Mausers.

the old dog
April 13, 2011, 03:25 AM
Bwana John, is that 51 gns a compressed load of cannister stick powder as Thales Group makes some of the powders that Hogden market as the Extreme Range, and they list the ADI (Thales) equivalent as AR2209 which grouped nicely in mine but looked as if it would have improved if I could have got more in the case. But we ran out of space. A link to Africa in the call sign? If so what part?
Married to a When We, ex Blue Job,

April 13, 2011, 12:45 PM
I certainly understand the desire to get the optimum performance out of a given rifle. That's why most of us reload for rifles. And I certainly understand the reasoning of finding good loads for a variety of bullet weights. I do the same thing myself. So, I am not trying to dissuade the OP from trying some experiments, even if they go beyond the published loads. But I will say from a practical standpoint that you shouldn't sweat it much if you can't find optimum accuracy when trying to achieve specific velocity goals. A given rifle often seems to have a preference as to bullet weight. I have a couple 7 mm mags that I load for. One prefers heavy bullets at around 160 gr or so while the other one prefers 139-140 gr. And each one rarely achieves the best accuracy at the highest velocity. But either one is capable of taking elk or moose with either weight bullet at whatever the velocity happens to be. Personally, I want the very best accuracy possible. If I have to give up 20 gr in bullet weight, so be it. If I have to give up 100-200 fps in velocity, that is fine also.

Of course, I still play around with different bullets and different powders all the time. That's the fun of experimenting. But when it comes time to go hunting, I typically pick whatever bullet and load that particular rifle shoots the best. No matter what the bullet weight is (within reason of course), that load will be used for coyotes, antelope, deer, elk, or moose.

April 13, 2011, 10:53 PM
This excerpt from Handloader Magazine is available online:

It contains a great article on loading the 7x57 in modern rifles. Very well worth the read and it's free.:D

I can't wait to get my 7x57 Ruger RSI out of layaway and load for it.

April 14, 2011, 12:08 AM
22-250, 243, 6mm Rem, 250 Savage, 257 Roberts, 25-06, 260 Rem,
6.5x55 [US brass], 270, 7mm-08, 7x57mm, 280, 300Sav, 308, 7.62x51mm, 30-06, 8x57mm, 338F, 358, and 35W all have the same case head.

They all may be registered by their owners at SAAMI or CIP for different pressures, but they are all good for the same pressure is shot in a strong rifle.

A strong rifle is an 1898 Mauser, Ruger #1, Win M70, etc.
Any rifle action that the manufacturer has sold in 270, and passed the proof test.

The case head is the 1889 7.65x53mm design build with a large Boxer primer pocket.

It used to be thought that the max was 65kpsi, and so 22-250, 6mmRem, and 270 were registered at that.

But recently, the 260 Rem was registered at 62kpsi.

While the individual handloader with one rifle may work up to a little over 65kpsi and get long brass life [many shots without the primer pocket getting loose] the ammo sold to the public has many more variables, being used in any rifle at any temp.

In all of these [or nearly all of these as I only load 13 of the above 20 cartridges] I work up until there is any measurable growth in the extractor groove. Then I back off ~4% powder charge. I need ~ 2% more safety margin for temp with IMR3031 or Re17 than I do for Varget.
Vernon Speer said to back off 6% if you are writing a load book.

April 14, 2011, 01:05 AM
You may be able to get the 3100fps with a 120gr bullet from a 24" bbl, but I wouldn't get too hung up trying.

3,000fps will relatively easy, but I'd look first for accuracy.

I've shot a 7mm08 for a number of years and I've found that the 140gr bullets are vastly better for large game (100lb "deer" class animals, and heavier).

I've used both 115 and 120gr bullets from my 7-30Waters at ~2,600-2,700fps, and have found them to be wanting in the penetration department. None have exited ~100lb white-tail deer does I've shot with them (Speer 115gr HP and Hornady 120gr V-max, 35-36gr of RL15, from a 21" bbl T/C Contender "Carbine").

A 140-150gr bullet at 2,600-2,700fps will kill light-medium game amazingly well. I prefer the 140gr Sierra and Remington Corlokt bullets. I've also had good results from the 139gr Hornady Pt.Spt, and Boat-tail Spt "Interlok" bullets. The 140gr Nosler Partitons are excellent, but don't penetrate as well as the Remington Corlokt's in my experience. (I've never recovered a Corlokt, but have Partitions...... just my experience).

Not so good luck with the Hornady 139gr SST however. (my lot# was very "hard", and wouldn't expand on deer...... even a spine frontal shot with deer's head down facing me-grazing, failed to expand. Just left a .3" hole in chest after impacting the top of the neck and penetrating the spine, heart/lungs, sternum and exiting;- downward facing shot from a tree stand at ~40yds.)

Perhaps the best performance I've ever seen on deer from my 7mm08 is with the Winchester 150gr Power-Points over 45.0gr of IMR4350 at ~2,650fps. I've shot about a half dozen deer with this bullet, haven't had a deer take a step after being hit, and never recovered a bullet.... It just works!!!!! (20"bbl). Accuracy from my rifle isn't anything to get excited about. Averages about 2" at 100yds for 5-shots. But, it KILLS !!!

Don't get hung up over +/- 100fps. The end result can be a damaged rifle/personal injury.
Heym makes some nice rifles. Keep it that way! The weak link is the brass cartridge which is just a "gasket" and container for the powder, primer, and bullet......
The 7x57 has an excellent reputation based on 140gr bullets at ~2,650fps and 160-170gr bullets at 2,300-2,500fps. Nothing wrong with success.......!

the old dog
April 14, 2011, 03:27 AM
It goes without saying that you reload for accuracy. Knowing that your bullet will hit within the smallest possible variation of where you aimed it, each time and every time you pull the trigger on a given load from a cold barrel in all weather conditions is all we can hope for as hunters. Maximising the energy it delivers, by increasing velocity, should never be done at the expense of accuracy. Interesting observation on the 139gn Hornady SST, Mr Goose Gestapo. I've only had great one shot kills with them on wild pig and goat, but it all comes down to bullet placement first off. So maybe I need to get performance data on ballistic jelly on them. Anyone seen any independant impact comparisons on the various bullet construcions? I tried various Barnes projectiles at times but never found anything that would group nicely regardless of velocity. I've just pulled two more developments to test with 140gn XLC BT's and 150gn TSX BT's and will publish the chronied results if they're worth it.

April 14, 2011, 04:12 PM
The problem with the 7x57 isn't the strength of the case. It is as strong as many others. It is the capacity with the best powders for it. It loves large kernel powders that burn slow (compared to my current .223 powders). You can only fit so much into a case. I have had powder literally falling over the case mouth trying to get more in. No go. So a friend told me to try magnum primers and re work the loads. It was better and I saw no pressure signs with my loads.

No I won't list them sorry. If someone blows their face off in a 95, I don't want them calling me out it is just that way nowadays.

I do have a thought for those in the pure accuracy camp. I understand that accuracy should be your goal, but there is a limit. If I am giving up a .01" in my group, but gaining 100fps average, it is acceptable. This could be broadened further in a case of big game hunting and if the shooter was to limit himself to say... 400yds. I would say even .1" MIGHT be acceptable. That is .4" and if you have a shooter/gun combo that can notice that in a field environment, the Corps could use him. If you are at that level then sure you have a point, but not many are so skilled and as good as factory rifles are they aren't quite that good yet either. I am considered a more than above average shot and at the ranges I am likely to encounter my game (predators) killing power overrides a .05" difference in groups.

I load my .223 loads for my kids to max minus .5gr. That way it may make a difference if they hit a rear quarter. By the same token, the most accurate load for each of their rifles is only grouping .1 better than this. That won't make the a fore mentioned hit any better. With their shorter range (<150yds) it just makes sense.

OK flame away.

February 5, 2016, 09:02 AM
Dredging this one back up from the deep, now that I'm loading for a Ruger 77 in 7x57. I discovered that the Speer #13 loading manual has two categories for it's 7x57 - a "SAMMI" load and a "strong action" load. Only the 160 and 175 grain bullets are listed online here:

However I found this very useful and interesting that many of the recipes exceed the 7mm-08 loads in the same manual - further confirmation in my mind that in absence of good 7x57 load data for a strong action, one can simply refer to 7mm-08 data.

Anyone have a copy of that Speer #13 manual to see whether they list more bullet weights?

February 9, 2016, 12:17 PM
I also learned the other day that the Hornady manual uses full-strength loads. Many of them exceed what they show for the 7mm-08 in fact.

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