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“Someone’s got it in for me, they’re planting stories in the press.
Whoever it is, I wish they’d cut it out, but when they will, I can only guess.
They say I shot a man named Gray and took his wife to Italy.
She inherited a million bucks, and when she died it came to me.
I can’t help it if I’m lucky”. –
A few lines from Bob Dylan’s “Idiot Wind”

I know the story behind the song, but I can’t help thinking these lines also make an excellent grifters’ anthem. Words are funny things. Writers know their meanings and intentions when assembled as more complete thoughts, but it’s anybody’s guess how they will be read. So I thought I would write this review in verse in an effort to attain greater clarity…

Ode to a 260 Remington…

The 260 Remington
is pretty spiffy.
For hunting moose,
it may be,
a little bit iffy.
For deer and hogs
it’s a stopper,
and for bear also,
except for a whopper.
Its modest case size
keeps reloading cost low.
While not a barn burner,
I wouldn’t call it slow.
What does
the 260 Remington
mean to me?
A consummate deer cartridge,
with great accuracy.

OK, what’s really going on?

Between the covers of the new Hornady #8, for some reason or other, the 6.5 Creedmoor is credited with a slightly higher level of performance than the 260 Remington. The listing is such a stretch to advance the Creedmoor, that Hornady breaks with their own forever tradition of whole hundred foot per second velocity increments and uses a twenty five foot per second increment for the Creedmoor. Honestly, I’m not sure how they got there because, in order of measured case capacity, the popular 6.5’s are the 6.5×55 Swede 58.0 grains, the 260 Remington 53.5 grains and the 6.5 Creedmoor 52.3 grains. The Remington holds slightly more than one grain of powder edge over the Creedmoor. Additionally, both the Creedmoor and Remington round have a pressure ceiling of 60,191 PSI. I couldn’t find the Creedmoor edge in my own handloads, regardless the data source used.

There was no attempt to configure or position the RemingtonModel Seven, pictured right, as a long range shooter, or to extract the long range potential from heavy for bore, high ballistic coefficient 0.264″ bullets. The Model Seven is a lightweight short barreled gun, so reloading attention was focused more on getting the most out of the round in concert with a 20″ barrel gun. Powder speed was kept below the slow burners, but as close to filled cases as possible.

Handloads were limited to a maximum of 140 grains, skipping the bore’s 160 grain top weight. The 6.5mm’s 140 grain bullets have a higher sectional density than the popular 7mm-08 Remington 140 grain bullet. A 6.5mm 120 grain bullet from the 260 Remington, for all intent and purposes, moves at about the same speed as it would from a significantly larger cased 25-06 Remington. The 260 Remington out performs the standard, improved and high pressure version of the 257 Roberts; equal barrel length and comparable bullet weights.

Say something interesting, Joe. OK, “Something Interesting”

Bullet Mfg # Weight
Grains
Length
Inches
COL
Sierra Varminter 1710 100 0.935 2.710
Sierra Pro-Hunter 1720 120 1.092 2.765
Privi B264SP 139 1.200 2.800
Hornady SST 26302 140 1.400 2.775

Maximum COL for the 260 Remington is 2.800″

The four bullets selected are representative of the useful range of weights and bullet types that work well for the 260 Remington. The Seven action doesn’t have quite the latitude of the Model 700 short action when it comes to maximum COL limitations, but more than enough to work within the cartridge’s specification for COL. Both the Privi and Hornady have cannelure grooves and these were used when establishing seating depth.

260 Remington Handloads 20″ Barrel
Bullet Type Bullet
Weight
Grains
Powder
Type
Charge
Grains
Primer
Type
MV
Actual
FPS
Muzzle
Energy

Ft. Lbs.
100 Yd
3 Shot
Group “
Sierra Varminter 100 Re17 47.5 LR 3148 2201 1
    IMR 4895 44.0 LR 3107 2144 1 1/4
Sierra Pro-Hunter 120 Re17 44.5 LR 2908 2254 1/2
    IMR 4350 46.0 LR 2936 2297 3/4
Privi 139 Re19 45.5 LR 2682 2221 1
    IMR 4350 43.5 LR 2646 2161 7/8
Hornady SST 140 Re17 41.0 LR 2704 2274 3/4
    RS Hunter 43.5 LRM 2687 2245 1 3/8

The loads listed left, are close if not at maximum. With the exception of the Re19 loads, completeness of burn is above the high 98% level. There were no signs of excessive pressure and all of the rounds chambered without interference at the noted cartridge overall lengths. The most well-mannered and one I would select as a primary hunting bullet for deer is the 120 grain Sierra Pro-Hunter.

Conclusion

I think I would have to classify the 260 Remington as a deceptively powerful cartridge. I guess the 0.264″ bullet, parked between the 0.243″ and 0.284″ bullets probably should make a lot of sense from any and all appearances. The point that is not so obvious is how well the 260 Remington holds onto downrange velocity as a function of ballistic coefficient and sectional density. The following is a run off the Real Guns External Ballistics calculator with the 120 Grain Sierra bullet selected. I used 6″ as the critical target diameter –

6″ Kill Zone – 241 Yard Zero – 282 Yards Point Blank Range
Range -yds 0 50 100 150 200 250 300
Velocity – ft./sec. 2936 2804 2675 2549 2428 2310 2195
Energy – ft.-lbs. 2296 2094 1906 1731 1570 1421 1284
Path – in. -1.5 1.1 2.6 3.0 1.9 -0.6 -4.7

A Model Seven in 260 Remington Part I
A Model Seven in 260 Remington Part II