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I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

 
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  #29  
Old 11-20-2012, 04:36 PM
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Quote:
Originally Posted by B23 View Post
Taking your price range into consideration and the fact that you already like Savage rifles, I'm not sure how you could look past any of the Savage models chambered in 6.5-284.

I'm no particular fan of Savage rifles but they are probably one of, if not, the best shooting rifles you can buy right off the shelf. Especially the ones in 6.5-284. I'm not sure which model 11 it is, maybe the LR Hunter or something like that, but it's pretty close to your price range and it is in a synthetic stock w/adjustable check piece, has a 1-8tw barrel that will shoot the 140's and also comes with a brake. I remember reading a review on one and everyone was VERY impressed with how well it shot right out of the box.

With the 6.5-284 you would get to use Lapua brass and that alone would give it serious bonus points in my book, not to mention the fact that the 6.5-284 chambering is inherently very accurate.
This is probably the easiest route to goto. The Savage is a little longer than the Remington, and that may end up being a factor to the better. A 26" barrel is way more than enough for any caliber mentioned, but as you'd have with anything longer you'll see increases barrel harmonics that may well lead to other problems. The cheapest route would be a simple 6BR in a 1:8 barrel. Or better yet one of the go between wildcats (remember we're just paper punching). I honestly think the 6.5's are the easiest to get there without heading upto a 30 caliber. The Savage will handle the .257AI necked upto 6.5 in the single shot action, but you may see a problem when using a magazine with 140 grain AMAX bullets. Might look at a 6.5x55AI. These two rounds are just about perfect for the bore size to powder burn ratio. But a 6BR with a 23" # seven barrel in a 1:8 twist would seriously surprise you shooting 105 grain AMAX bullets at about 2800fps
gary
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  #30  
Old 11-21-2012, 05:36 AM
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

I guess I'm just not sold on the idea of buying a stock factory rifle for $1k when I can probably put together something special with a better barrel and a better trigger for the same price or less. Am I under-estimating? Haven't tried building a full custom before. But I have been seeing Savages listed for as low as $200 lately.

I'm thinking that if I want to reach out past 1000 yards, that I'll probably need to get into one of the 338's. My logic says to separate the two into purpose-built guns rather than compromising and doing it with one.

So what am I looking at in terms of effective range and trajectory with the 6.5-284?
How does it compare to the 7mm Rem Mag?
What about 7mm STW? Or the 7mm-08?
And what are the best long range bullets and weights for 6.5 and 7mm?
Are there some charts somewhere that I can find this information? I've only got a couple reloading manuals, but the don't give anything besides the supposed MV.
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  #31  
Old 11-21-2012, 09:39 AM
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Quote:
Originally Posted by junkpile View Post
I guess I'm just not sold on the idea of buying a stock factory rifle for $1k when I can probably put together something special with a better barrel and a better trigger for the same price or less. Am I under-estimating? Haven't tried building a full custom before. But I have been seeing Savages listed for as low as $200 lately.

I'm thinking that if I want to reach out past 1000 yards, that I'll probably need to get into one of the 338's. My logic says to separate the two into purpose-built guns rather than compromising and doing it with one.

So what am I looking at in terms of effective range and trajectory with the 6.5-284?
How does it compare to the 7mm Rem Mag?
What about 7mm STW? Or the 7mm-08?
And what are the best long range bullets and weights for 6.5 and 7mm?
Are there some charts somewhere that I can find this information? I've only got a couple reloading manuals, but the don't give anything besides the supposed MV.



I'll try answering all your questions:

I would expect any Savage you see for $300 or less is an older version without either Accutrigger or Accustock. These can still be shooters if you get lucky, as I have an older stock Savage .243 I picked up used for a "barn gun" for my dad that put 5-shots through the same hole the first time I shot it. These are not the quality of the newer Savages that you should expect to be VERY accurate, especially in their long-range hunter configuration.

The Accutrigger on modern Savages is a technological breakthrough that gives them an accuracy advantage over ALL other rifle manufacturers. They created the first relatively inexpensive trigger that can be set very light for maximum accuracy and still be safe.

The 7 MM Rem mag is a good round that will easily do what you want, punch paper to 1,000 yards & kill deer to 800 yards, so will the 6.5-284.

The 7 MM STW and the 7 MM RUM (very similar) add considerably more powder to give you a faster bullet with a flatter trajectory than the 7 MM Rem. Each of these will take deer at 1,000 yards if you can shoot them that well. Because of the extreme amount of powder you should expect a shorter barrel life and considerably more muzzle-blast.

The 7 MM-08 is a necked down .308 cartridge that has much less velocity and energy than the 7 MM Rem mag. I consider it at most a 500-600 yard deer gun although I know others will disagree.

The 7 MM Rem mag is not a bad choice for what you are wanting to do. It's a very good choice. For the same reasons you are leaning towards it, I chose it as my first medium-game/big-game rifle long ago. I still have that 7 MM although I haven't shot it in 3 years. I think the point of the comment on the stock 6.5-284 was to let you know there are options you may not have considered, not to say you were headed a "bad" direction.

Many long-range shooters are shooting 6.5 MM / .264 bullets because of the high BC values some .264 bullets have that keep the bullets from losing energy as fast as most bullets as they travel long distances. Largely because of hand loaders and high-BC bullets the .260 Rem, 6.5-284, and .264 Win Mag are seeing a surge in popularity. (The .264 Win mag is the 7 MM Rem necked down slightly.) If I had it to do over again, my first deer/elk rifle would have been a .264 Win mag instead of a 7 MM Rem mag.

To compare cartridges you can go to any of several on-line ballistics packages, including the one on this site (That I have never used).

If you are serious about later adding a .338 mag for LONG distance shooting I would lean towards going smaller on the gun you are getting/building now and opt for a .264, whether the 6.5-284 or the .264 Win mag. Smaller will mean more comfortable and less expensive shooting.

If a later .338 is only a possibility, I think the 7 MM Rem mag, the 6.5-284 or the .264 Win mag (along with the .270 WSM) are a coin flip from each other with each having adherents and supporters.

The main reason for going custom on a LONG range rifle is to get it to handle things a stock rifle will not. The biggest issue with most stock rifles & LONG range use (other than accuracy) is that cartridges loaded with the high BC Berger bullets will not feed through most stock magazines. For this reason you'll see .270 WSM rifles built on long actions and that's why you will see semi-stock rifles with different "bottom metal".

Hope this helps!
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  #32  
Old 11-21-2012, 11:41 AM
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Quote:
Originally Posted by junkpile View Post
I guess I'm just not sold on the idea of buying a stock factory rifle for $1k when I can probably put together something special with a better barrel and a better trigger for the same price or less. Am I under-estimating? Haven't tried building a full custom before. But I have been seeing Savages listed for as low as $200 lately.

I'm thinking that if I want to reach out past 1000 yards, that I'll probably need to get into one of the 338's. My logic says to separate the two into purpose-built guns rather than compromising and doing it with one.

So what am I looking at in terms of effective range and trajectory with the 6.5-284?
How does it compare to the 7mm Rem Mag?
What about 7mm STW? Or the 7mm-08?
And what are the best long range bullets and weights for 6.5 and 7mm?
Are there some charts somewhere that I can find this information? I've only got a couple reloading manuals, but the don't give anything besides the supposed MV.
The 6.5-.284 or a 6.5-06 would be where to start
gary
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  #33  
Old 11-21-2012, 11:51 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: greenwood, IN
Posts: 3,554
Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buano View Post
I'll try answering all your questions:

I would expect any Savage you see for $300 or less is an older version without either Accutrigger or Accustock. These can still be shooters if you get lucky, as I have an older stock Savage .243 I picked up used for a "barn gun" for my dad that put 5-shots through the same hole the first time I shot it. These are not the quality of the newer Savages that you should expect to be VERY accurate, especially in their long-range hunter configuration.

The Accutrigger on modern Savages is a technological breakthrough that gives them an accuracy advantage over ALL other rifle manufacturers. They created the first relatively inexpensive trigger that can be set very light for maximum accuracy and still be safe.

The 7 MM Rem mag is a good round that will easily do what you want, punch paper to 1,000 yards & kill deer to 800 yards, so will the 6.5-284.

The 7 MM STW and the 7 MM RUM (very similar) add considerably more powder to give you a faster bullet with a flatter trajectory than the 7 MM Rem. Each of these will take deer at 1,000 yards if you can shoot them that well. Because of the extreme amount of powder you should expect a shorter barrel life and considerably more muzzle-blast.

The 7 MM-08 is a necked down .308 cartridge that has much less velocity and energy than the 7 MM Rem mag. I consider it at most a 500-600 yard deer gun although I know others will disagree.

The 7 MM Rem mag is not a bad choice for what you are wanting to do. It's a very good choice. For the same reasons you are leaning towards it, I chose it as my first medium-game/big-game rifle long ago. I still have that 7 MM although I haven't shot it in 3 years. I think the point of the comment on the stock 6.5-284 was to let you know there are options you may not have considered, not to say you were headed a "bad" direction.

Many long-range shooters are shooting 6.5 MM / .264 bullets because of the high BC values some .264 bullets have that keep the bullets from losing energy as fast as most bullets as they travel long distances. Largely because of hand loaders and high-BC bullets the .260 Rem, 6.5-284, and .264 Win Mag are seeing a surge in popularity. (The .264 Win mag is the 7 MM Rem necked down slightly.) If I had it to do over again, my first deer/elk rifle would have been a .264 Win mag instead of a 7 MM Rem mag.

To compare cartridges you can go to any of several on-line ballistics packages, including the one on this site (That I have never used).

If you are serious about later adding a .338 mag for LONG distance shooting I would lean towards going smaller on the gun you are getting/building now and opt for a .264, whether the 6.5-284 or the .264 Win mag. Smaller will mean more comfortable and less expensive shooting.

If a later .338 is only a possibility, I think the 7 MM Rem mag, the 6.5-284 or the .264 Win mag (along with the .270 WSM) are a coin flip from each other with each having adherents and supporters.

The main reason for going custom on a LONG range rifle is to get it to handle things a stock rifle will not. The biggest issue with most stock rifles & LONG range use (other than accuracy) is that cartridges loaded with the high BC Berger bullets will not feed through most stock magazines. For this reason you'll see .270 WSM rifles built on long actions and that's why you will see semi-stock rifles with different "bottom metal".

Hope this helps!
One factor that's been left out is that if you opt for the 6.5/.284, and then buy a .338 mag barrel; you'll also have to change out the bolt head. But if you go with a 7mm mag (whichever one), all you need is the barrel. Of course if you went with a .300WSM (or 7mm WSM) you could simply install a .338 RCM barrel. I kinda like the WSM series as they allow you a little more flexability in the over all length area. If it were my gun, I'd probably do a 7mm WBY mag and a .338 Win mag as they both use the same bolt head. Of course you could get very serious and do the .358 Norma mag or even the .358 ST Alaskan.
gary
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  #34  
Old 11-21-2012, 12:50 PM
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trickymissfit View Post
One factor that's been left out is that if you opt for the 6.5/.284, and then buy a .338 mag barrel; you'll also have to change out the bolt head. But if you go with a 7mm mag (whichever one), all you need is the barrel. Of course if you went with a .300WSM (or 7mm WSM) you could simply install a .338 RCM barrel. I kinda like the WSM series as they allow you a little more flexability in the over all length area. If it were my gun, I'd probably do a 7mm WBY mag and a .338 Win mag as they both use the same bolt head. Of course you could get very serious and do the .358 Norma mag or even the .358 ST Alaskan.
gary


I presumed he meant he would be getting another rifle to add a 338 to his mix. If not, you are 100% right.
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  #35  
Old 11-23-2012, 08:01 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Menomonie, WI
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Re: I'm indecisive. Help me choose a caliber.

Correct. It would be a second, dedicated rifle. Not a fan of having to go through a full sight-in process if I wanted to use a different caliber.

Anyway, appreciate the input. You guys gave me a lot more to think about on this. Currently, I'm planning on going with 6.5-284. It apparently has the best of everything I'm looking for.
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