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.244/6mm Remington

History


In the early 1950’s, Remington engineers began research towards a 6mm cartridge suitable for varmints through to deer. Having settled on the .257 Roberts case as the base for their design, the project members focused on suitable bullet weights. After much testing, it was determined that in the Roberts case, optimum performance came from bullets weighing 75 grains for varmints up to a maximum of 90 grains for use on deer. A slow rifling pitch of 1:12 (one turn per twelve inches) was chosen to stabilize these bullet weights and in 1955 the .244 Remington was officially introduced. In the same year, Winchester introduced the .243 Winchester, utilizing 80 to 100 grain bullets and featuring a barrel twist rate of 1:9.

Both cartridges were designed for dual use on varmints through to deer however the shooting public assumed that because the Remington used lighter bullets, it must have been designed as a varmint cartridge first and foremost. On top of this, the long .244 cartridge was chambered in a short action not ideally suited to the 57mm case. With 100 grain bullets the .244 might lose powder capacity. The public was decided and .243 sales took off leaving the .244 in the dust.

In 1963 Remington attempted to regain ground by releasing .244 rifles with a new 1:9 twist to handle heavier bullets. The cartridge was renamed the 6mm Remington and new ammunition was loaded giving the hunter the choice of either an 80gr bullet for varmints or a 100 grain bullet for deer. The changes had little effect on the market and the 6mm Remington has dwindled ever since. 

Remington have not produced 6mm Remington caliber rifles for several years and the 244/6mm Remington is today, somewhat of a classic cartridge. This cartridge is also occasionally adopted by hunters as a custom rifle chambering.
 

Performance


As previously stated in the .243 Winchester text, the greatest virtue of both the .243 and .244/6mm is that these cartridges offer adequate killing power for lighter medium game at a noise and recoil level that can help any hunter to shoot calmly and accurately. However, the 6mm bore is not nearly as forgiving as wider bore sizes and those who use the 6mm’s must explore both the strengths and limitations of this bore size along with a thorough understanding of game anatomy.

In comparison to the .243Win, factory loads for the .244/6mm Remington are slightly more powerful while hand loads increase this margin further. The .244/6mm has two levels of performance which can be generally divided into; factory rifles with 22” barrels versus custom long magazine rifles with 24” barrels.  The latter produce a noticeable increase in muzzle velocities with hand loads over both the .243Win and standard .244/6mmRem. 

As with several Remington cartridges, the .244/6mm was designed with generous freebore. This allows both factory and hand loads to be driven at high velocities with relatively low pressures. By adopting a custom rifle with a magazine length more suited to the long 57mm Roberts/Mauser case, the performance of the .244/6mm can be enhanced further.
 
.243 Winchester 22” bl 24”bl
FL Federal 85gr TSX 3130 3200
FL Federal 100gr SP 2890 2960
HL 85gr 3200 3270
HL 95gr 3050 3120
HL 100gr 3000 3070
.244/6mm Remington. Factory short magazine @ 2.83”/ 72mm
FL Federal 85gr TSX 3270 3350
FL Federal 100gr SP 3020 3100
HL 85gr 3300 3370
HL 95gr 3100 3170
HL 100gr 3050 3120
.244/6mm Remington. Custom rifle, magazine 3.300”/84mm plus
FL Federal 85gr TSX 3270 3350
FL Federal 100gr SP 3020 3100
HL 85gr 3350 3400
HL 95gr 3150 3200
HL 100gr 3100 3150
.240 Weatherby. 6mm-06 Improved
FL/HL 100gr SP 3260 3330

The table above shows comparisons between the .243 and .244/6mm in both 22 and 24” barrels. Also shown is the results of using a longer magazine custom rifle for the .244/6mm and the effects of hand loaded bullets, seated out long to increase powder capacity. Lastly, the .240 Weatherby, essentially a 6mm-06 Improved, is shown for further comparisons. Please bear in mind that there are no absolutes and that individual rifles will display variations in velocity. 

Long magazine custom rifles (especially on the mid length Mauser M98 action) have from time to time, been popular amongst 6mm bore fans as a basis for building high velocity optimum performance .244/6mm rifles. Fortunately, the chamber specifications and throat length as determined by Remington and standardized by SAAMI are perfectly balanced for full utilization of the 57mm case without any need for custom throating.

Readers must also bear in mind that any power increase of the .244/6mm over typical .243 hand load velocities (85gr bullet at 3200fps) poses an increase in recoil which may not be suitable for certain hunters. Along with this, driving a 100 grain 6mm projectile at 3150fps still does not make the .244/6mm Remington as effective and forgiving as cartridges in the power range of the 7mm08 when heavily muscled or heavily boned game are encountered. Instead, the high velocities of a fully optimized .244/6mm simply increase the range of the 6mm bore’s ability to produce fast kills on medium game.

The .243 produces its fastest kills inside 200 yards or at impact velocities above 2650fps. The standard .244/6mm increases this range by around 25 yards while a custom .244/6mm with 24” barrel produces its fastest kills inside 260 yards, a difference of only 60 yards over the somewhat smaller .243. That said, 60 yards is 60 yards and any increases in fast killing and wound trauma are definitely positive aspects of performance.

Between 300 and 400 yards, the .244/6mm produces a wide wound channel however game may show no sign of a hit and escape considerable distances. On stout game such as hogs, shot placement is very important, as regardless of the high velocity that the .244/6mm is capable of, mature boars can be very difficult to anchor.
 

Factory Ammunition


Remington now list only one load for the .244/6mm, the 100 grain Core-Lokt at an advertised 3100fps for a realistic 3030fps in 22” barrels. This load is not suitable for the twist rate of the original .244 rifles, suited only to rifles stamped 6mm Remington or custom rifles with the appropriate twist rate. This is a much more potent load than other entry level budget loads for the .243Win which generally achieve 2890fps from 22” barrels. The Core-Lokt has a low BC however most 6mm projectiles including the sleek Hornady SST suffer the same limitations. The 100 grain Core-Lokt is a punchy load, fast expanding with reliable controlled expansion and gives best performance (fastest killing) on medium game inside 175 yards. 
 
Federal have taken the .244/6mm Remington under their wing and produce several highly useful loads.  These include an 80 grain soft point at an advertised 3400fps for 3300fps in 22” barrels, the 85 grain Barnes TSX at 3350fps for 3270fps, a 100 grain soft point at 3100fps for 3030fps and lastly, the excellent 100 grain Partition at 3100fps for 3030fps in 22” barrels.
 
Both the 80 and 100 grain soft point bullets are low budget, entry level loads. The Federal Vital-Shok bullet (formally Hi-Shok) is not quite as well constructed as the Remington Core-Lokt regarding deep penetration however wounding is very much the same. The 80 grain bullet is of course designed for varminting but is also suitable for lightly built game weighing up to and around 40kg (90lb).
 
The 85 grain Barnes TSX produces the deepest penetration of all 6mm projectiles but wounding is slightly narrower, decreasing in performance at ranges beyond 200 yards. This bullet is best utilized on heavily muscled / boned medium game to help promote full expansion and violent wounding of which, the 85 grain TSX is fully capable of.  
 
The 100 grain Partition is a particularly useful load, especially at .244/6mm muzzle velocities. This bullet is fast expanding, ideal for lean animals but also relatively deep penetrating, ideal for stout animals. This is another load which does its best work inside 175 yards where velocity remains above 2650fps.
 

Hand Loading


Brass for the .244/6mm is still produced by Remington however 7x57 brass can also be re-sized and trimmed to suit. Suitable powders for light weight varmint projectiles include those in the IMR 4064 and Varget (ADI2208) range. For 80 to 105 grain projectiles, medium slow burning powders in the 4350 range work best. Long magazine custom rifles have the advantage of being able to utilize slow burning powders in the 4831 range without suffering powder compression. This powder is best suited to 100 and 105 grain bullets.

As already stated, the .244/6mm can be divided into two levels of performance; factory rifles versus custom long magazine rifles. Further categorization includes variations in barrel length and the limitations posed by the varying twist rates. The table given in the performance section of this text is an attempt to take many of these variables into account and to some extent, help explain why published data for the .244/6mm Remington also varies considerably.

The .244/6mm Remington produces similar performance with component projectiles to its cousin the .243 Winchester. To this end and to avoid repetition, projectile performance is discussed in great detail within that text.

One separate mention must go to the 105 grain Hornady A-Max. In rifles of suitable twist rate and barrel length, this longster can be driven at 3100fps. The BC of the A-Max is a huge .5, far greater than other .243 projectiles. Expansion on game is violent, velocity and energy retention down range are high, along with low wind drift. For those wanting a lighter medium game load specifically for open country hunting / extended ranges, the A-Max is an excellent projectile with superior wounding to competitive brands at the 300 yard mark and beyond. Please bear in mind however, this projectile was not designed as a hunting bullet and cannot be expected to produce deep penetration on stout bodied game.
 

Closing Comments

 
The .244/6mm Remington is becoming increasingly rare as time passes but has managed to retain a small fan base. Like the .243, this cartridge has both great strengths and considerable weaknesses. The key, is learning how to minimize the latter and optimize the former. Game anatomy, game killing, accuracy, trajectory and wind drift are all factors that 6mm users need to learn inside and out. Of course - the same should apply to all hunters regardless of whether they use a higher powered cartridge. Perhaps the weaknesses of the 6mm’s are in fact their greatest strengths if viewed as a learning tool.
 
Suggested loads: 6mm/.244 Remington Barrel length: 22
No ID   Sectional Density Ballistic Coefficient Observed  MV Fps ME
Ft-lb’s
1 FL Rem 100gr Core-Lokt .242 .356 3030 2038
2 FL Rem 100gr Core-Lokt .242 .356 3030 2038
3 FL Fed 85gr Barnes TSX .206 .333 3270 2018
4 FL Fed 100gr SP. .242 .355 3030 2038
5 HL 85gr Partition/GK/TSX .206 .315 (Av) 3300 2055
6 HL 95gr SST or Nosler BT .230 .355 3100 2027
7 HL 100gr Partition .242 .384 3050 2065
8 HL 85gr Partition/GK/TSX .206 .315 (Av) 3400 2181
9 HL 95gr SST or Nosler BT .230 .355 3200 2160
10 HL 100gr Partition .242 .384 3150 2203
11 HL 105gr A-Max .254 .500 3100 2240
 
Suggested sight settings and bullet paths           
1 Yards 100 225 300 325 350      
  Bt. path +2 0 -5.4 -8 -11      
2 Yards 100 150 269 310 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.7 0 -3 -7.4 -10.6 14.3  
3 Yards 100 150 292 330 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.9 0 -3 -4.7 -7.4 -10.4  
4 Yards 100 150 269 310 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.7 0 -3 -7.4 -10.6 14.3  
5 Yards 100 150 292 330 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.9 0 -3 -4.7 -7.4 -10.4  
6 Yards 100 150 280 320 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.8 0 -3 -6 -9 -12.5  
7 Yards 100 150 275 315 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.7 0 -3 -6.5 -9.5 -13  
8 Yards 100 150 308 350 375 400 425  
  Bt. path +3 +4 0 -3 -5.5 -8.5 -12.7  
9 Yards 100 150 290 330 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.9 0 -3 -5 -7.6 -10.7  
10 Yards 100 150 288 330 350 375 400  
  Bt. path +3 +3.8 0 -3 -5 -7.8 -10.9  
11 Yards 100 150 290 330 350 375 400  
  Bt. path + 3.8 0 -3 4.6 7.2 10  
 
 
 
No At yards 10mphXwind Velocity Ft-lb’s
1 300 7.7 2306 1181
2 300 7.7 2306 1181
3 300 7.4 2460 1142
4 300 7.7 2308 1183
5 300 7.8 2450 1133
6 300 7.8 2369 1184
7 300 6.9 2378 1255
8 300 7.5 2531 1209
9 300 7.1 2453 1270
10 300 6.6 2463 1347
11 300 5 2569 1539
Note: Loads 8,9,10,11 for custom rifles with 24” barrels.

 6mm remington final.jpg
 
  Imperial Metric 
A .472 11.99
B .471 11.96
C 26deg  
D .429 10.89
E .276 7.01
F 1.725 43.81
G .351 8.91
H 2.233 56.72
Max Case 2.233 56.72
Trim length 2.223 56.5
 
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