High performance 25-06 loads


April 2, 2011, 12:10 AM
I am buying my first quarter bore here very soon and am looking for some zippy handloads for 100gr TTSX or Ballistic Tips for some beanfield deer droppin. I have heard of handloads for the 100gr pushing 3500+fps but no exact load data. I was hoping someone here might have some experence with these laser flat loads. I am looking at a 24" barrel M70 X-Bolt or Venture rifle.

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April 2, 2011, 08:35 AM
I found Hodgdon Retumbo powder to works best in my gun for 100 grain and heavier bullets. H4831 for lighter weight bullets. You won't be disappointed with any combination of modern powder and bullets as long as they shoot accurately. The 25-06 is a screamer.

April 2, 2011, 09:03 AM
H4831 here with the Barnes 100gr VLC. Since it appears they don't make that bullet anymore, I will probably be looking at the TTSX too and starting over. As for powder charge, start low and work up your charges to find the best fast/accurate combo. Hodgdon lists 54.3 as max for 100gr (Nos Par).

Flatbush Harry
April 2, 2011, 10:56 AM
I have been very pleased with IMR 4831 with 90gr SGKs and 100 gr SMKs, SGKs, Hornady Ballistic Tips and Barnes TSXs out of my Rem 700 XHR. I have not used Barnes TTSXs.

As advised, start low and work up. My approach has been to choose a load in the middle of the manual's range for a given powder and bullet and make up loads on either side looking for improvement. Most manufacturer's manuals indicate what powders they have found produce most accurate loads in their test equipment. I've found that's a good starting point.

Good luck.


April 2, 2011, 11:38 AM
In my Brownign A-bolt, I shoot 51gn of IMR-4350 with the 100gn NosBT. Fast, FLat and deadly. Re-17 witht the same charges also do well and are less temp sensitive than the 4350. Don't start here with your gun, work up for safety!!

April 2, 2011, 03:36 PM
That's a nasty, nasty cartridge. Great gun. I'm thinking anything within reason that you throw together will get on down the range...

April 2, 2011, 03:49 PM
You ain't gonna get 3,500 FPS at safe pressure with a 100 grain bullet though.
Getting 3,300 is pushing it.


April 2, 2011, 11:04 PM
I see loads over 3300 fps in the conservative Nosler manual. I have heard several people online say they are getting 3400+ with the TTSX and BTs. There are a few loads on reloaders nest moveing even faster then that, but I don't beleve everything I read online, I was hoping someone else here had some real world experence with these screamers. Even at 3300 fps it is a super flat shooting and I really want one. My 6.5x55 for hunting the woods and a 25-06 for picking them off from across the peanut field, sounds like a perfect pair to me :) Both have zilch for recoil, and are proven game getters.

April 2, 2011, 11:23 PM
I've seen best accuracy and velocities with IMR4350.
52.5gr of IMR4350 and the Sierra 100gr BTHP gave consistent sub 1/2" groups at 3,250fps from a friends Cooper Arms after a $300.00 "blue-printing" by a retired USAMU gunsmith. A $1500 custom rifle shouldn't have need such........(price he paid in mid '90s).

52.0gr of H4831 and 120gr Sierra 120gr BTHP GameKing gave 3,000fps and sub 1/2" accuracy.

A friends circa 1980's Mauser MkX give ~1/2" with the Sierra 120gr BTHP and a charge of 43.0gr of IMR4320. It only gives 2,800fps but has killed many deer for him......

3,500fps is possible with 87gr bullet but not with 100gr.
My .257WbyMag with RL25 however will get 3,600fps with a 100gr bullet.

April 2, 2011, 11:25 PM
My abolt likes NBT in 85 and 100s I have had excellent results with RL 19 and RL22. Work your way up. I used Noslers #6 and the harder I pushed them the tighter the groups got. I could not get to max book loads as I was flattening the primers.

April 3, 2011, 01:27 AM
Now your talking my language. I'll throw a few recipe's, all SAMMI listed loads.
This data is with a 100 grain bullet, and seating depth should be adjusted according to what your rifle likes. But in that respect, I would increase your COAL if deciding to go outside of SAMMI OAL recomendations. This is to avoid possible pressuresthat exceed SAMMI maximum. The following loads were tested in Remington 700 with a 24" barrel - 1-10 twist
IMR4831 52.0 grs.-56.0 grs. = 3231 fps. - 3425 fps. ( Standard large rifle primer CCI-200)
IMR4350 49.0 grs.-53.0 grs. = 3059 fps. - 3302 fps. ( Standard large rifle primer CCI-200)
H450 49.0 grs.-53.0 grs. = 2916 fps. - 3184 fps. ( Magnum large rifle primer CCI-250)
IMR4064 43.0 grs.-47.0 grs. = 2963 fps. - 3281 fps. ( Standard large rifle primer CCI-200)
H870 61.0 grs.-65.0 grs. = 2887 fps. - 3106 fps. ( Magnum large rifle primer CCI-250)

If your really wanting some laser trajectory, try loading the 87 gr. bullets. Velocities with those will easily get you well above 3500 fps. and likely in the 3700 fps. department. There are plenty of well suited bullets of that weight that will work well for deer hunting. For starters, Nosler and Speer alone have a bullet that has excellent jacket integrity, Barns too!
Take a look at Hogdon's reloading pages. They have a good deal of load data that should satisfy your need for speed. If you don't find what your looking for there, I would suggest spending $8 and get the " One Cartrdige/ One Book" for the 25-06. I buy one of those for every cartridge I load. They don't have every single load available for a given cartridge, but, they deffinitly have most of the available loads for a given cartridge. Those books also have a good cross refrence of powder and bullet manufacturer's data that I find very useful.
And don't dismiss the 120 gr. bullet by any means. With todays modern bullets and powders, velocities of 3100 plus fps are obtainable with the 120 gr. bullet. That particular bullet from a 25-06 is achieving plenty of velocity to deliver outstanding trajectory, and enough kinetic energy for any deer sized game.

April 3, 2011, 02:22 AM
"...pushing 3500+fps..." Max velocitiy for a 100 grain TSXBT is 3320ish. You can get to 3814ish with an 80 grain TTSX. 3500ish with a 90 grain banded solid. Mind you, deer don't need high priced premium bullets.

41 Mag
April 3, 2011, 07:40 AM
You mention bean field/peanut field hunting, but what are your actual yardages going to be?

I have loaded a 24" barreled Rem 700 with about all the 100gr loads short of expelling primers and not gotten over 3350fps with accuracy. I have gotten just a tad over this velocity, but case heads start to flow and primers start to iron out and pierce shortly afterward. Not worth it in my opinion.

This said, in all the years I have loaded for it, I have found the 115gr bullets were the best combination of weight and speed from my rifle. With either of the 115gr Partition or BT seated to an OAL of 3.250", I could get 3150fps with no issues using Winchester cases, Win-WLR primers and 56.5grs of RL-22, and they both grouped into around an inch at 200 yards year in and year out.

If your shooting for distance, accuracy will be your best search criteria, look for the load which produces it. Look for this with the medium to heavy weight bullets as they will have a better wind bucking ability, and better penetration down range. Out to 400 yard or a tad further I have not wanted for anything more than the 115gr Partition. It has done everything I could ask for when used on anything from fox squirrels to deer and hogs. The key is having the accuracy and confidence in it to put the bullet right where you want it time and time again in actual field positions and conditions.

A couple of years back I presented the rifle mentioned here to my daughter for a Christmas present. We fought over it year after year anyway. Before I did however, I did try out the 110gr Accubond with the above mentioned load using RL-22. I did nothing other than swap out the 115gr Partition and seated the AB to the same OAL. The resulting load shoots easily under an inch at 200yds at a consistent 3275fps +/-20fps for the 20 rounds we checked it at. This might be a decent compromise as with a couple of the newer powders, this bullet might get on up to around 3350 pretty easily. If so it should work like lightning. For us however, the accuracy we're already getting and for the ranges out to 450 or so max we will be shooting, the two above are working fine. Both the daughter and now the grandson have both taken deer, hogs, and yotes, with it.

Good luck, and when you work up your loads be careful, and stick to printed loads and velocities, and not internet hearsay.

(the above RL-22 load, if I am not mistaken, is from a Speer 11 manual I believe for their 120gr bullet.)

On a side note, I did build me a 25-06AI and used a 28" Broughton 1-9 5C barrel. With it, I can hit the velocity you mentioned with a 100gr bullet, but even then it's being pushed pretty hard.

April 3, 2011, 08:02 AM
A favorite load of mine for "beanfield" shooting (300+ yds.) is 45 grains of 4831 behind a 117 grain Sierra Gameking.
My rifle, a Ruger #1 shoots sub-MOA with this load and the heavier bullet is, in my humble opinion, a better choice for extended range hunting.

April 3, 2011, 04:54 PM
I just use IMR4831 and 120 grain Partitions. Plenty flat enough shooting and deer dont like getting hit with it.

April 3, 2011, 07:07 PM
That's some good sound advice 41 Mag.. It's too easy to take someone's word for a load being a listed and tested SAMMI load, and then wind up destroying the gun, or worse yet, getting hurt.
By the way, the data I provided is from the #10 Speer. I actually prefer the RL22 data with that 110 gr. Accubond. That is a very effective hunting combination. One question though, because of the slower burning RL22 is a magnum primer recomended? I noticed some of those large charges of slow burning powder call for a magnum primer.

April 4, 2011, 12:13 AM
The field I hunt is about 400yards wide and 980 yards across. I set up in the middle so the longest shot I could see is right around 500 yards. Not an impossable range but one that I would certainly have to practice for in the off season. I thought about trying 110 Accubonds and 115 BTs as well, but the super high speed of the 100gr bullets really has my attention. I can push just over 3000fps in my 6.5x55 with my 120BTs but it seemes to like the heavier 140gr SSTs a little better those only fly in the 2700fps range. My 270WSM really likes 130SGKs and 140 Accubonds and hates everything 150gr I have tried, it has great trjectory but as I said before it is a bit much for mid sized deer, and a bit much on the shoulder when doing load development. Probably would be the perfect elk cannon since it is comprable to a 7mm rem mag.

41 Mag
April 7, 2011, 05:59 AM
The field I hunt is about 400yards wide and 980 yards across. I set up in the middle so the longest shot I could see is right around 500 yards. Not an impossable range but one that I would certainly have to practice for in the off season. I thought about trying 110 Accubonds and 115 BTs as well, but the super high speed of the 100gr bullets really has my attention. I can push just over 3000fps in my 6.5x55 with my 120BTs but it seemes to like the heavier 140gr SSTs a little better those only fly in the 2700fps range.

Your right it takes a LOT of practice to be proficient out to 500yds, and near perfect conditions to do so. I had a Leupold VX-3 4.5x14 mounted on top. Using the 115gr Partition loaded to 3150fps, and sighted in dead on at 200yds, it was a simple matter of turning the power up to 14 and setting the top of the bottom post where I wanted to hit out at 400yds. This equated to about an 18" drop which made it very easy to also judge range as this is about the height of a deer from top of back to bottom of belly.

Knowing your load inside out is one third of the equation, the next part is having a rifle which is stable in all conditions. The original stock I had changed my POI over the course of several years until I finally had no more adjustment left in my scope. It simply curled up from natural drying or warping, not sure which. Either case I replaced it with a Fajen laminate and once I got it glass bedded, no further issue have arisen. I good trigger is also a must for this sort of work. You cannot be pulling much over 3# if that and keep things on target at those ranges time and time again. It has to break clean and even every time so that your always surprised when it does. I had mine set to just under 2.5# and there was never a time when I felt this was too light.

The last third is you. Your breathing, heart rate, and trigger control will all play an effective role in your groups out to and past 400yds. It might seem only slight, but once a big buck steps out and you see him in your scope, all bets are off. If you have one foot that starts to shake while your settling in for the shot you might as well back away and regain control. That vibration will transfer up through you and effect your shot. Can't sit there and drink coffee either, as the caffeine will jack up your heart rate. There is nothing like wanting the bouncing ball in the scope to stop bouncing, and it just won't do so.

Changing gears here a minute, that 6.5x55 is nothing to be overlooked. I picked up one years ago when Kimber sold a bunch of sporterized 96's. I figured it would be a good one for my daughter to use while growing up and still have plenty of backbone once she matured. I worked with everything I could find to get the thing to shoot 5 shots on a paper plate at 100yds. After replacing the scope, the stock, and going through every make of bullet on the shelves I finally hit a load which produced consistent 1" accuracy at 100yds.

Thing was I had to be somewhat careful with the loads and not push the pressures. So I settled with the 140gr A-Max plodding along at just over 2550fps. I figured that this would be a fine load for 100yd or so shots in the woods, which it performs outstandingly. What I didn't know at the time was also how well it reached out across 3-400yds of pasture and reliably dropped feral hogs. I found this out while testing the bullets before letting her hunt deer with them. Since we have suck a widespread hog problem they make great test media. Time and time again I stretched the yardage out with them until I couldn't judge the drop reliably. Every hog I connected with hit the dirt on the spot. Hogs are tough and tenacious, and if not hit solidly will make even the best of power and bullets look puny. The 6.5x55 is a fantastic little round and will amaze you with what it can and does do all out of proportion to what you would think it can. What has totally blow us away is recently we purchased a couple hundred rounds of the PRVI 139gr SP ammo. We figured it might work out for the hogs and not cost an arm and a leg to shoot up. It has surpassed any attempts of my handloads in accuracy out to 200yds and even my 9yr old grandson has used it on deer and hogs, and shot less than an inch group more than once at the range. Don't pass up giving it a fair shot.

April 7, 2011, 06:22 AM
The .06 is not to picky on powder at all. I've used IMR4350 with the 85 to 100 gr bullets and had good accuracy and velocity. Pick any powder with similar burn rate and it will probably work well.

I prefer the RL powders as they seem to give more velocity then IMR or Hodgdon. But, I haven't shot the RL in cold weather so don't know how sensitive it is.

April 8, 2011, 12:44 AM
I have experence with the 270 win, what are the advantages of the 25-06 over the 270win other then a little flatter trajectory with 100gr bullets? Some people have said the 25 tends to be a bit more accurate, others say it is the same with a little less recoil.

41 Mag
April 8, 2011, 05:39 AM
I have experence with the 270 win, what are the advantages of the 25-06 over the 270win other then a little flatter trajectory with 100gr bullets? Some people have said the 25 tends to be a bit more accurate, others say it is the same with a little less recoil.

I have shot them both for years. To me there is not much to be had in a side by side comparison, they will both get the job done well.

To me you have a bit more rifle with the .270 in that you can if wanted run up to the 170gr bullets. However I honestly feel that it is at it's best with those in the 140gr range. With the .270 you can run a 130gr bullet downrange about as fast as most .25's run a 115gr, which results in more energy when it gets there. It does however come with more recoil to do so.

The recoil is where I feel the 25.06 shines, as it is very tolerable even with top end loads. It will put plenty of bullet downrange to drop deer and bigger animals, and can if wanted be dropped down to a 85gr screamin critter getter. As so many times is seen here and elsewhere, shot placement is key. The .25 might have an edge on things here due to the lighter recoil for younger or more sensitive shooters, but it isn't much because to me the .25 is times again louder even with a 24" barrel. The muzzle blast has shown to cripple some when trying to concentrate on shooting smaller groups.

As far as accuracy, I don't thing one is more inherently more accurate than the other. There are just too many other contributing factors which influence this than simple the diameter or weights of the bullets. Either one of mine will shoot in or around an inch at 200yds regularly with most of my handloads. With factory I couldn't tell you what they do, as neither have been exposed to them. I can say this, if you have either and it shoots good groups, the only reason to have the other is simply to add to your collection. Neither will kill things any deader than the other.

April 8, 2011, 11:02 PM
24" is not enough you think? Wow now that is overbore. There are not many 25-06 rifles out there with 26", the Savage 111 long range hunter is the only one I can think of.

April 17, 2011, 10:14 PM
The attached were using IMR4895. I am not a good shot & this 100 & 200 yd. group were from the bench. 3050 fps out of my 40 year old Rem. 700BDL.

IMR4895 is good for Garand 30-06, 270, 25.06 & works in .223. I only buy 1 rifle powder.

April 18, 2011, 02:46 AM
The .270 win. will send a 100 grainer at over 3600 fps. I've loaded a bunch of those for coyote hunting and they really get out there fast. But for deer sized game I like the 130 grain at 3200 fps and it is deadly accurate and super flat shooting with the Speer Hot Core Boat Tail. I shot an antelope at over 500 yds. and I only had to hold over about 21" with it zeroed in 2 1/2 " high at 200 yds. Right through the pump station. Wierd though, he ran without a heart or lungs for about 400 yds. following the the clean shot. They call that runnng dead, and I thought it was an exageration until that day.

April 18, 2011, 08:24 AM
I'll add: For a superlative bean-field load, I doubt that you'll find a better combination than RL25 and the Berger 115gr VLD "Hunting" bullet. I've used these though my .257Roberts at 3,000fps and every deer hit has been a bang-flop. The extreamly high b.c. will at ranges beyond 300yds make this bullet superior to any 100gr bullet. Wind drift is the enemy, not velocity/trajectory. This bullet minimizes the wind drift. RL25 gives the highest velocity possible with this bullet. Some rifles may be more accurate with IMR7828. You'll have to try both to see which is better in your rifle. My .257wbymag prefers RL25. My "Roberts" prefer IMR4831.

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