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Range report Hornady .257 rbts lt mag

sandwarriorsandwarrior Member Posts: 5,453 ✭✭✭
I posted this here as this is going to be my reloading goal for my .257 RBTS. It's an ultralight with the really short/light(=whippy) barrel of 20". Anyhow I got 2855 pushing 117's. Accuracy is always a question with a very light barrel. But it did hold 1.5" groups @100 yds. After returning from the range I noted the cases were only 177 grs. as opposed to std. @170 grs. and +p which usually comes in at 185 grs. I have to say I'm pretty impressed with this in my short barreled .257. Any of you long barreled .257 owners get a chance to try this let us know how it turns out.


On the box Hornady put this notice(notice it's not a warning, but legally it reduces liability)
"Notice: Hornady Custom cartridges are manufactured to fired only in firearms which are in good condiditon and originally designed and chambered for this cartridge. Keep out of reach of children."

Also, on the label(sticker attached to the box.) it states that this ammunition is intended to be fired in fixed breech weapons. Meaning that semi-auto's are out.
This kind of limits liability in any chambering in a custom rifle.

I have heard a lot both ways about using original '96 actions for high pressure rounds. I have no experience with them with the exception of my newest endeavor, a 9.3x62 Husqvarna built immediately prior to WWII. Personally if you had a question about I wouldn't see any problem with a '38 but if in doubt don't use it in an originally configured '96 action.


  • Bill CostikBill Costik Member Posts: 1,845 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Does anyone know if these Light Mags can be used in a rifle built on a 96 Swede action?
  • nononsensenononsense Member Posts: 10,934 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1

    I'll give you the run around answer since any blanket statement will only serve to start an argument.

    "Does anyone know if these Light Mags can be used in a rifle built on a 96 Swede action?"

    Of course they CAN be used, if you have a proper chamber in the barrel, simply because the cartridge will fit and CAN be fired. The question then becomes 'should it be used?' You as the builder should have done your homework on the standards that this receiver was built to. You should also have checked the receiver thoroughly for all of the apparent and those not so apparent flaws that might create a dangerous situation if cartridges such as this are used. Each receiver should be treated as an individual.

    I'm not trying to be a smart-aleck at all. P.O. Ackley chambered some '96's in the .264 Win. Mag. and lived through the testing very happily. None of the rifles were any worse off than when he started the tests. Kimber chose to ruin thousands of the 1896 Swedes when they converted them several years ago. Some of these were chambered to handle high pressure cartridges and they worked out just fine.

    My opinion? The Swedish Mausers were built by some of the best, most fastidious craftsmen ever. The metals, materials and heat treat were superior to any used in the world to date, for the manufacture of the 1896 and the Model 38's. They were not cheap to make and they used nothing but the best steels even by today's standards.

    So would I use the Light Magnums in one of my Swedes? I don't think so because I don't need to. There's no reason to because I can use something else that will achieve what I want to achieve without testing the strength of my receiver every time I pull the trigger. Besides, I have never had the Light Magnums perform at a high enough degree of accuracy to suit me. I don't see any reason to operate a firearm at the highest level of pressure just to say that I can. The highest pressures don't often yield the best accuracy. My handloads are better and less expensive.

    There's a lot more but I suggest that you look into some of the excellent reading material on the Mausers and then come up with your own assetment. We can discuss it as often as you like.

    How's school going?



    There are no differences in the strength or function of the 1896 as compared to the Model 38. Same receiver and bolt, different barrel length, stock and a turned down bolt handle on the M38. It makes a far better looking rifle in my opinion over the M1896.
  • Bill CostikBill Costik Member Posts: 1,845 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    nononsense I realize you are not trying to be smart. I was asking because I have a M96 actuion that will be eventuually built into a rifle, to be used mainly for deer hunting. I'm just tossing atound ideads on different cartiridges, ie: .257 Roberts, .250 Savage, .300 Savage, 6.5 Swede.
  • nononsensenononsense Member Posts: 10,934 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1

    Remember to look at the shape and the geometry of the original cartridge in order to take that into account. This will determine how much or how little work you have to invest in getting the new cartridge to fit and feed.


    Be aware that the original 6.5 x 55 Swede cartridge had a .480" rim as opposed to the nearly standardized .473" diameter that gets used most often here. Then look at the length of not only the cartridge but of the throat for that cartridge as well, along with the taper of the body. These all figure into the feeding of a particular cartridge. Make some dummy cartridges up for the ones you might want to try and watch closely as you feed them from the magazine. There is an incredible amount to learn from this simple process.

    I know that it's probably not the most exciting choice but the 6.5 x 55 will fill the needs of most deer hunters as well as being capable of taking elk with an appropriate bullet and load. Pay close attention to the length of the throat on the reamer that you chose due to the varying lengths that are available. Make sure you can use the full length of the magazine to accommodate the longer, heavier bullets. The old style military chambers could swallow and shoot the 160 gr. Sierra semi-pointed bullets with no problems. I use a reamer with no throat and then I select the throat reamer that is appropriate to the bullets being used. There is nothing wrong with the original chamber but it doesn't do well with shorter, lighter varmint bullets. The pair of bullets that is exciting is the 120 gr. Nosler BT and the 125 gr. Nosler Partition. They shoot to very nearly the same POI with their respective loads in my rifles. I'm also using the 6.5 x 55 in a long range target rifle...

    It's a terrific project no matter what you decide to do.

    I hope you're enjoying school and let us know if you need anything.

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