AV in 7x64mm

Discussion in 'Sako Long/Magnum Actions' started by icebear, Apr 19, 2020.

  1. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    Just picked up an AV in 7x64 from Gunbroker. The caliber is virtually unknown here in the US, but is popular in Europe. Introduced in 1917 by Wilhelm Brenneke, it is based on the .30-06 case. There is also a rimmed version called 7x65R. Performance of the 7x64 is, for all practical purposes, the same as .270 Winchester or .280 Remington (previously called 7mm Remington Express). The 7x64 is not interchangeable with .280, however, as the Brenneke round uses a tapered case.

    The rifle I bought is in like-new condition with a high-gloss "Lakka" finish. I was a bit concerned about the wood finish looking at the auction photos, as it almost looked like a bad refinish, but I made the correct guess that the problem was bad photography, not the gun itself. It can be pretty difficult to get a good photo of a very glossy object. I think the rifle is probably a bringback; there is no visible import mark and few rifles in this caliber were officially imported.

    Interestingly, I was the only bidder and got it for the opening price of $1200. A few weeks ago I lost out on an auction for a Sako carbine in the same caliber that went for over $3K. Apparently the deep-pockets bidder is only interested in carbines, all the better for me. The rifle has no sights and the trigger breaks cleanly at around 2 pounds. That's OK for the range but if I ever take it hunting I'll want to turn the screw a bit to get it up to 3 or so. The wood is quite nice, but not as pretty as the .25-06 that is the subject of another current thread. It also came with a set of Sako rings in decent condition. These are the late-original rings with the wrap-around top. I mounted a Zeiss Conquest 2.5-8x scope and I'm looking forward to the local range reopening so I can see how it shoots. I've got two kinds of ammo for it and I'll be very interested to see which bullet weight works best in the Sako. My other 7x64, a German custom with a Sauer barrel, is quite accurate with 173 grain S&B ammo, but not so much with 144 grain Norma. Germans typically like heavy bullets, so I'm guessing the custom has a fast twist to the barrel. The Sako may well have a slower twist and shoot better with the 144's.


    Here are photos. The first photo shows the rifle with my other metric AV, a 9.3x62 with sights and a 1.5-5x Leupold. Between the two, they pretty well cover any medium to large North American game, and most of Africa as well. The final photo shows the two Sakos and my 7x64 German custom.

    Rifle 1.JPG Rifle 2.JPG Rifle 3.JPG Rifle 4.JPG Rifle 5.JPG

    Rifle +2.JPG
     

  2. CVCOBRA1

    CVCOBRA1 Well-Known Member

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    Very nice, she does have some gloss to her doesn't she?
    Got to have your neck on stilts to shoot that German puppy......LOL
     
  3. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    Yeah, shooting it is more like a "chin weld" than a "cheek weld." In the traditional German style, the rifle is set up to use the open sights and the scope is an add-on, in claw mounts so it can easily be removed to use the irons. You get used to it, but it's no way as stable as a low-mounted scope. The double set triggers also take some getting used to. I'll say this for it, it is quite accurate until that pencil barrel heats up.
     
  4. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    At long last I got a scope mounted on the 7x64 Sako and took it out for a test firing. Scope is a Leupold VXIII 3.5-10x. Didn't have a lot of time but managed a 1" 3-shot group with PMC 170-grain soft points. Tried Norma 150-grain ammo with lousy results. Probably the barrel twist; results are quite similar with my German custom gun in the same caliber. Europeans tend to shoot heavier bullets in 7mm than we do, so I suspect the barrel twist on both guns is just too fast for the shorter bullet. OK by me; the PMC ammo is cheaper than Norma anyway.
    Sako 7x64 Target 2-26-2021.jpg
     
  5. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Lots of people want to know how their rifle will perform "in the future". Looks like you've found the answer for your 7x64 since today is Feb 26 and the target you show is marked Feb 28.:D Anyway, if it shoots as well tomorrow (Feb 27) as the crystal ball says it will on Feb 28 then I suspect that it will continue to do just fine.
     
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  6. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    You got me. Being retired, I have trouble remembering what day of the week it is, let alone the actual date. I do, however, plan to be extremely precise about next Wednesday, when I have my appointment for the second Covid shot.
     
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  7. CerebralDistortion

    CerebralDistortion Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations are in order.

    7x64 and 280 Rem are not the same, though both perform about the same and the freebore on the 7x64 is a bit longer. Both cartridges are tapered though.

    The 7x64 has a 1:8.xx twist and the 280 Rem 1:10. However, this does not limit the ability to shoot lighter rounds. But the opposite is usually the case with heavy enough bullets.

    I would say that the lousy results with the 150 gr Norma was happenstance. Normas factory ammunition usually performs good enough.

    Just a few thoughts, nothing mentioned to pick a fight.
     
  8. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    I don't think there's a thing wrong with the Norma ammo. It's just too light a bullet for the two guns I have in 7x64. Both of them shoot MOA with 170-173 grain.

    In terms of performance, there's not a dime's worth of difference among .270, .280, and 7x64, but as you say, they are not interchangeable. The 7x64 has visibly more taper than the .280, resulting in slightly less case capacity. However, the Europeans load hotter than we do so performance is all but identical.

    I didn't know that, but it's not surprising given that the 7x64 was designed with a longer bullet in mind.
     
  9. CerebralDistortion

    CerebralDistortion Well-Known Member

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    You could almost add the 06 in that group as well...

    7x64 has just over 1 gr more case capacity over the .280 so it should perform better.

    Many old european cartridges were designed for heavy round nosed bullets. 6.5x55, 7x57, 7x64 to name a few (and those three have the same 1:8.66 twist.

    Anyways, good luck with your new rifle, may it serve you well.
     
  10. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    Just to be sure we are on the same page, are you referring to 1 grain or 1 gram?
    Thank you. So far, so good. It is performing as I expect from a Sako.
     
  11. CerebralDistortion

    CerebralDistortion Well-Known Member

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    1 grain (gr) not 1 gram (g).

    :)
     

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