The Simplified Model Test (SMT) is an alternative approach to determine cyclic life at elevated temperature and avoids parsing the damage into creep and fatigue components. The original SMT concept  considered that the effects of sustained primary stress loading could be safely neglected because the allowable local stress and strain levels were much higher than the allowable sustained primary stress levels. This key assumption is critically evaluated on Alloy 617 using internal pressurized cylindrical SMT specimens at 950 °C. The impact of combined internal pressurization and displacement-controlled creep-fatigue loading on the SMT cycle life is demonstrated at different strain ranges. The effect of primary load on the SMT design method is discussed.