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.308 Winchester vs 7.5x55 Swiss

.308 vs 7.5x55 Feature Image

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Hey all, we here at True Shot Academy are going to be looking into the .308 Winchester and the 7.5×55 Swiss cartridges. These two rounds hail from the 20th century and have been enjoyed by shooters of all types throughout the years. Our goal with this blog post is to provide a brief overview of these two cartridges and delve into their features, traits, and use cases. Without further ado, let’s talk .308 Winchester and 7.5×55 Swiss.


What is .308 Winchester?

The .308 Winchester is an American cartridge that was introduced in 1952. The cartridge served as the basis for the 7.62x51mm NATO cartridge, a long-standing military cartridge utilized by many countries. The .308 Winchester itself is derived from the .300 Savage and was designed with the intent of matching ballistic performance similar to the .30-06 Springfield in a smaller package.

Many firearms have been chambered in the .308 Winchester cartridge. Of course, the NATO counterpart of the .308 Winchester, the 7.62x51mm NATO, has been utilized by many NATO countries in firearms of all types. A wide variety of commercial firearms have been chambered in the .308 Winchester, typically in semi-automatic or bolt action form.

While newer cartridges have been introduced which surpass the .308 Winchester in certain use cases, the cartridge still remains popular among shooters. The cartridge is still an incredibly versatile cartridge which can easily be pressed into a variety of roles.


What is 7.5×55 Swiss?

The 7.5×55 Swiss cartridge is an iconic Swiss military cartridge which debuted in 1911. The cartridge was derived from the existing Gewehrpatrone 1890 7.5×53.5mm cartridge and has been renowned for its accuracy. The GP11 ammunition utilized by the Swiss military were essentially near match grade loadings which were fit for use in Swiss service rifles and machine guns.

Many Swiss firearms have been chambered in the 7.5×55 Swiss cartridge. The iconic straight pull bolt action rifles featuring Schmidt-Rubin type mechanisms are some of the most common and iconic examples of rifles in the caliber. The Swiss Model 1896/11 rifle and K31 carbine are prime examples of some of the iconic military rifles in the caliber.

While the cartridge is popular among shooters in the United States, it is ultimately more popular in Europe. Many of the modern production firearms in the caliber are almost exclusively sold there as other rounds are simply more popular in the United States.

GGG .308 Winchester
GGG .308 Winchester

How Available is .308 Winchester?

.308 Winchester ammunition is incredibly plentiful and easy to find these days. Odds are, you will encounter some .308 Winchester offerings at just about any gun counter in America. The loading is popular among shooters of all types, especially those who engage in hunting and precision shooting. Companies from all over the world produce .308 Winchester loadings. .308 of this caliber can easily be acquired from companies such as PMC, GGG, Aguila, and Sellier & Bellot to name a few. Loadings of all types are also available on the market, ranging from plinking/practice ammo to match grade and hunting ammunition. Simply put, the .308 Winchester’s versatility is enhanced by the variety of optimized loadings available for the cartridge.

Simply put, the cartridge is a staple among shooters in the United States. .308 Winchester firearms and ammunition are prolific in all 50 states and have been used by shooters of all generations. With the wide variety of domestically and foreign made ammunition in this caliber, a prospective buyer will have zero issue finding a loading that best suits their needs.


How Available is 7.5 Swiss?

Currently, the 7.5×55 Swiss cartridge is decently available. There are a number of companies who produce the cartridge and there is still a fair amount of surplus GP11 ammunition on the market. Most of the companies who manufacture loadings in this caliber are located in Europe as the cartridge is more popular there than the United States. Companies such as Sellier & Bellot, PPU, and Graf & Sons (Hornady) to name a few.

As mentioned earlier, the cartridge is more popular in Europe than the United States. This means that the round is not as common as American mainstays like the 6.5 Creedmoor, .30-06 Springfield, and .308 Winchester. These three aforementioned rounds can easily be found at most places where ammunition is sold. Finding 7.5×55 Swiss on a shelf in the United States will be quite a bit harder but not impossible. If one wishes to acquire this cartridge, they may need to check places like gun shows for surplus loads or order ammunition online.

All in all, one will be able to find 7.5×55 Swiss ammunition if they truly want to. It is not particularly elusive by any means; shooters will just need to look a bit harder to find loadings.


What is the Availability of Firearms in .308 Winchester?

Currently, there is no shortage of firearms available in .308 Winchester. Everything from bolt action to semi-automatic rifles are available in the caliber. Some of the most common semi-automatic .308 Winchester chambered semi-automatic rifles will be of the AR-10 variety. These rifles are produced by companies such as LMT, Daniel Defense, Smith & Wesson, and Ruger to name a few. It is even easy for an end user to build their AR-10 as companies such as Aero Precision and Palmetto State Armory produce major parts and components for builders. Beyond the AR-10, semi-automatic .308 Winchester rifles can usually be found in the form of FAL, G3/HK91 pattern rifles, FN SCAR 17, and M14/M1A style rifles.

At the end of the day, one will have zero issue finding a rifle in .308 Winchester if they wish to pick one up. Rifles in this caliber, both vintage and modern, are commonly found for sale on gun racks and online. .308 Winchester chambered rifles have been produced since the 1950s, meaning that there is no shortage of options available to prospective buyers.


What is the Availability of Firearms in 7.5×55 Swiss?

Most of the firearms chambered in 7.5×55 Swiss will be in the form of military surplus rifles or parts kit builds. Some of the most common examples one will find as far as military surplus rifles go are straight pull rifles of the Swiss variety such as the Model 1896/11 and K31 rifles. Parts kits and some pre-ban import examples of STG-57/SG 510 rifles some of the prominent autoloading rifles found in the caliber. In the past, companies such as CZ and even Ruger have offered bolt action hunting rifles chambered in the 7.5×55 Swiss. One will have an easier time encountering surplus rifles or parts kits that accommodate the caliber over scarce modern production offerings.

At the end of the day, one will be able to find a firearm in this caliber if they truly want one. Options are decidedly more limited than modern and more contemporary surplus options, but they are available nonetheless. This is just the nature of the beast when it comes to more obscure military caliber rifles and surplus firearms in general.

K31 Carbine with PPU 7.5x55 Swiss
K31 Carbine with PPU 7.5x55 Swiss

What Do You Use .308 Winchester For?

Shooters choose the .308 Winchester for a variety of use cases. The cartridge is often referred to as a “battle rifle cartridge” alongside its NATO counterpart, the 7.62x51mm NATO. The .308 Winchester is often loved by those who want a battle rifle, or a semi-automatic rifle with a bit more authority than something like a 5.56x45mm NATO chambered rifle has to offer. These typically come in the forms of AR-10s and other designs. These types of rifles have been utilized often for training, competition, and hunting usage. Of course, many bolt action and even some lever action offerings exist if one desires something more traditional. Simply put, the caliber is well-suited for defensive use, hunting, match use, and general plinking. The cartridge is incredibly versatile and well-suited for many roles.


What Do You Use 7.5x55mm For?

The 7.5×55 Swiss cartridge has been utilized for a variety of purposes. The cartridge has often been utilized for target shooting and hunting applications. Vintage service rifle matches will typically feature some form of Swiss straight pull bolt action rifle chambered in the 7.5×55 Swiss. The near match grade performance of GP11 ammunition has made it a favorite among shooters in both competitive and casual usage. As far as a hunting cartridge, the 7.5×55 Swiss is capable of dispatching medium-sized game ethically and humanely. The effectiveness of the cartridge is increased by the presence of modern hunting loads which are optimized for hunting use.



At the end of the day, the .308 Winchester and the 7.5×55 Swiss have stood the test of time. Both cartridges remain popular among shooters in the modern era and are renowned for their versatility and performance. While the 7.5×55 Swiss can be tough to get, we here at True Shot typically have a wide variety of .308 Winchester in stock. Regardless of what you are after, we have got you covered and can get you set up for your next range trip. As always, happy shooting.


Need bulk ammo? At True Shot Ammo, we have a wide variety of handgun ammo and rifle ammo available to purchase. Please visit our website trueshotammo.com, call us at (888) 736-6587, or you can email us at [email protected] for more ammo options.


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