6.5 x47 or 7mm-o8

dave kelly

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i read in sporting rifle a good report about the 6.5x47 calibre. i am undecided between that calibre or a 7mm-08 for allround stalking.does anybody use either' any advice as i am still a novice .i have a 243 /been told it is not suitable for the larger deer


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I have been using the 7-08 for over a year & I think it's the cats pyjamas, like you I heard that some stalkers wont allow people to use a .243 on larger deer,so got the 7mil to be on the safe side!
The 6.5 X 47 does sound good, I suppose it just depends if you need factory ammunition readily available & if they are producing this chambering in factory rifles.
I think you have the right idea going for 'more gun' having 140gns of bullet in your quarry's kill zone might go some way to make up for unintended pilot error.


Distinguished Member
7mm 08

dave have no experience of the 6.5 x 47
but now own a 7mm 08 still early days at the moment
reloading new rounds etc shot a couple of roe no problems
reason for going with the calibre was that havent heard a
bad word said about it .
can only back up what D L has allready stated
hope this helps regards pete .


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I would absolutely go for the factory calibre as there will be a time when you forget your ammunition! Also many lets are increasingly demanding "factory loaded ammunition" only.

For that reason and that when you decide you want it no longer it will be easier to sell I go for the 7-08. It is also a very popular calibre in France being their 308 "substitute"!

These wildcats are usually the "next big thing" by copywriters with nothing better to write or gunsmiths with something to sell. The successful wildcats are all near enough factory cartridges by now!

fly tyer

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get yourself some 100grain bullets for your .243 there are many keepers in the highlands using them as a general porpuse estate rifle.
you just have to get your placement right. if you miss the mark with your 7mm08 it will still be wounded.

all legal calibers will do the same job at stalking ranges. so lets not turn this into a "which is better .243 or .308 debate.

unless you have the money and would like a new rifle,( in which case go for it,)then just buy heavy bullets and remember the saying,
beware the man with only one rifle, because he is proboble very good with it.


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As Flytyer says, learn to use your rifle. A fast flatter bullet doesn't make up for deficiencies in "accuracy", it just/still damages more meat if too much "shock".

A heavier, slower, "loopier" bullet will do less damage, you just have to know where to aim. It's still called accuracy.

A .243 , that you already have, is good.

If you have plans to do "more or bigger" here in the UK or abroad and can really only "service cost" of one rifle then by all means consider a slightly larger calibre.

Same caveat applies, learn to use it. Practice, practice, practice.....


P.S. 7 x 64 has only ever been a hunting calibre. No problems with "Johnny Foreigner" and should be as acceptable to a FEO as a .308.

Never found a "reasonably" stocked shop in Africa without them 8)

I went Swedish with my UK rifle and then went for a Mauser M03 (9.3 x 62 for Africa) for a heavy calibre. Decided I wanted less than 9.3 x 62 for lighter foreign antelope and was going to go for 7 x 64 having used, and loved it.

Decided to only master one light calibre, not two. Got a second Swede for the Mauser and am working on maximising what I can get out of "same calibre, two rifles"


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dave kelly said:
i read in sporting rifle a good report about the 6.5x47 calibre. i am undecided between that calibre or a 7mm-08 for allround stalking.does anybody use either' any advice as i am still a novice .i have a 243 /been told it is not suitable for the larger deer

The 6.5X47 is in the same class for power as the 243, it was developed from the 243/308 case but cut down to make it 10% smaller, so technically it is a smaller cartridge, in practice it matches the 243 in performance because it has more efficient internal ballistics. I know someone that has used his extensively on deer and when the big stags come out he reaches for his 6.5X284. ;) Beware of some of the velocities you see for the 6.5X47 as these are for rifles with at least 24 if not 26” barrels not the 22” barrel you will have on your stalking rifle.

To sum up the 6.5X47 is superbly accurate round, which you could use instead of the 243 but it would not give you a lot more in muzzle energy. It is a reloader cartridge only at the minute, and you will have to get a custom rifle built as, as far as I know there are no factory rifles available in this calibre.

If you keep your 243 and then brought a 7-08 or 7X64/280 then you would be able to cover virtually all animals you may encounter. You can shoot from 58gn to 100gn bullets in the 243 and 100gn to 175gn in the 7mm rifle, that will take care of everything from foxes to boar and plains game.

Forget trying to use one calibre for all as you will have to compromise at one end of the spectrum. If you are really hung up with using one rifle get a switch barrel or two rifles from the same maker.

Best rgds



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Why bother

I completely agree with Fly tyer and I have never heard of an estate that will not allow a Red deer legal calibre rifle on the hill. It is an old wives tale. If you can shoot it with a deer legal calibre in the right place it is dead.

I am up at Glen Ogle this weekend and the keeper shoots 243!!

If you are a novice why are you reading so much into this?

243 is legal and will knock over all deer with 100gn bullet.

Fancy calibres are for "special people" who like to think they know more about ballistics then the the manufacturers

why reinvent the wheel, Go to a gunsmith and ask him, then as you get more experienced you will know what suits you.

If i had to do it all over again with 1 gun i would have a 6.5x55

and i have 223, 22-250,243,308. 1st one out the box is 308 every time since it was moderated, for Roe, Red and Fox

Hope this helps


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i have two sako 75 rifles one in .243 and a 7mm 08 they are both very good rifles but the 7mm 08 is the main one that i reach for each time wether it be roe red or fallow that im going after. It most definately hits harder(just my opinion) no doubt somebody will be into their ballistics and argue the point. but more importantly i am happier with it in my hand just a confidence thing i suppose.


Distinguished Member
guys all good sensible replys
fly tyer makes a very good point about the 243
even though i now own a 7 mm 08 i still have two 243 rifles
i wont be parting with them either .


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Silly question from a novice :oops: but having read this thread & had a good browse I can't find the answer to this:

Is 7mm 08 the same calibre / round as 7mm Rem Mag? If not what is the difference?


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Take two cartridges - 308 Winchester (aka 7.62mm NATO) and the 300 Winchester Magnum (a modernised version of the old 300 Holland and Holland Magnum aka Holland Super 30 aka 300 H & H "Belted" Magnum).

Neck both down to accept a .284" diameter bullet. You've just made a 7mm-08 from the 308 and from a 7mm Remington Magnum from the 300 Winchester Magnum.

Both do, more or less, what the "parent" cartridge did at the same velocity but with five to ten grains less bullet weight for each.

Therefore the 7mm-08 is probably best with a 140 grain bullet (similar to the 144-150 grains of the 308/7.62mm) and the 7mm Remington Magnum with 165-175 grains (similar to the 180 grains of the 300 Win Mag).

More or less.

The 7mm-08 can be used in the same action length as a 308 or 243. The 7mm Remington Magnum needs the same action length as a 30-06 or 270.

Potentially and actually the 7mm Remington Magnum is 25% more powerful in terms of velocity AND bullet weight it can handle effectively. In practice? Put either in the vitals and both will kill as good as the other.

The 7mm Remington Magnum is a fine cartridge for long shots across mountain valleys or in open plains. Or for heavy game at close range. It is a poor woodland stalking rifle for the UK.

The 7mm-08 is a fine cartridge for not so long shots across mountain valleys or in less open plains. Or for heavy game at close range. It is a superb woodland stalking rifle for the UK.

Either would be OK on wild boar. But other factors - recoil and shot to shot recovery - then must be taken into account.

I won't confuse you by mentioning the 280 Remington formerly known as the 7mm Remington Express. That would needlessly unkind!


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Ratwhiskers (member on here) has a good deal of experience with the 7-08 and I can safely say that nothing short of wild horses would separate him from his. I'll see if I can get him to post something. Wait out.



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Enfieldspares - thanks for taking the time to explain that in such detail. It makes sense now :!:

I am going to have a hell of a dilema when it comes to choosing the calibre of my first stalking rifle.


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G, me old mate... was browsing and spotted this.... so for those who care and them as don't here's my take on the 7mil'08.

lt fits a short action.... l had 1 spare (.243 shot out, Zaitsev's old toy)
.308 brass.... lots of it!! 1 pass though the dies and you're good to go!
Better ballistics than the .308.... On a par with the 7x57/ and loaded within reason will match the .270win without the meat damage.....
Good choice of bullets....
Easy on the shoulder and the ear.... with or without the can on the end.

120 v-max @ 2960 - 3100f/ps for foxes
130smk's @ 2800f/ps for the range
150 partition's for plains game
175 solids for elephant..... Just got to hold your nerve and brain 'em!!

My local gunshop sells R-P ammo for it if l need a factory load quick (140-150's l think)

l would have liked to have had the Ratwife's built in 6.4x47 but she wanted a 6mmBR, so l'll have to wait.....

But my last words on the subject are thus....

Use whatever you want/are good with...
Use a bullet designed for the job at hand...
Learn to shoot it accurately at all ranges...
Enjoy your sport, and good luck with your next stalk!!!



dave kelly

Well-Known Member
thanks for all the advice ; it seems that 7mm-o8 is favouret. i will practice with my sako85/ 243 as i am at the range tomorrow; and have a stalk on tuesday. and see if i can more experience over next few months reguards dave


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Re Ratty's post.

Like you I thought the 308 and 7/08 cases were indentical and having a 7/08 rifle and two bags of unfired 308 brass I had been given, I thought I would put a couple to these through the die to see what happened. On
comparing the re-sized brass to the 7/08 cases - they were not the same! The 308 neck is slightly (1mm) further back. I only then checked the book and this is indeed the case. I assume that firing a 7mm bullet through this would then fireform the case to the correct dimensions? I would imagine this has been done to prevent 7/08 ammo fitting in 308 rifles - its too long.

The thing is though - how accurate would such a load be on first firing - i.e do i need to fireform the lot of them before I can use them? Thats too much work - and would the 1mm stretch weaken the case?


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I'm fairly sure the 308 family all have the same headspace i.e. distance to a datum on the shoulder, the same headspace gauge is used for 243, 260, 7-08 and 308. This is confirmed in my copy of the Sierra reloading manual. The difference is the length of the case, I've got:
243: 2.045"
7-08: 2.035"
308: 2.015"

So yes, the 7-08 case is 20 thou longer or around 0.5mm, it might make a bit of difference, but I reckon the bigger difference is the thickening of the neck when you neck down from 308 to 7mm... I've made 243 from 308 before and they were dangerously thick (barely fitted in the chamber) they needed neck turning. Not sure what the difference is for 7-08, it shouldn't be as bad as for 243...


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I've always assumed that the expander ball would take out any internal thickness and therefore the only problem would be elongation?

Am I wrong?


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You'll probably find the neck will thicken a bit and elongate a bit. I suggest you try making a dummy round and measuring it, you'll probably be alright, chambers tend to be quite generous around the neck. Just compare the diameter of your dummy round with a fired case and also check the case length, trim if necessary.