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6.5x284 questions

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Old 11-23-2012, 04:30 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: victoria, bc
Posts: 7
6.5x284 questions

I'm new to shooting, (targets only,) and I needs some myths addressed and some other info.

-I constantly read that the 6.5x284 burns barrels/throats quickly. Don't the other large capacity cartridges like 300 win mags or other large 7mm's do the same?

-As near as I can tell the 284 seems to be the exact same case size as a 270 rem, is this so, and if not what case is the 284 derived from and what specs are changed for the finished product other than the neck diameter?

-Just curious, but has anyone had success with making a 7mm rem mag shoot 6.5mm or is that just stupid overkill gambling with barrel pressures? Dumb question I'm sure, buy hey, go big or go home right? hahaha
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Old 11-25-2012, 01:11 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Oregon
Posts: 203
Re: 6.5x284 questions

The 284 Win case was it's own design. It is larger in diameter than the 30-06 family of cases, but shorter in length to allow use in a short action. The case capacity is pretty close to that of the 06 family. The rim is rebated (smaller in diameter than the body of the case) to allow the use of the standard 06 bolt face.

I don't really care for terms like "barrel burner" or "overbore". Many factors play into how long a barrel will be able to meet the requirements placed on it. Personally I think much of the "barrel burner" rep, that the 6.5-284 has, comes from the type of competitions it was used in. Long strings of fire, combined with the demand for absolute best accuracy, showed the 6.5-284 to have a shorter competitive life span than some other cartridges. It is just the nature of the game it was being used in.

The 7mm Rem Mag necked down to fire 6.5mm bullets is nothing more than a 264 Win Mag. The 264 WM also has a rep as a barrel burner. Most of that comes from the early days and people using them as combo big game/varmint rifles. Overheating a barrel by shooting many rounds in a short time is a great way to shorten the useable life of that barrel.

When it comes time to decide what cartridge your rifle will be chambered for, you need to balance several factors. The better you match these factors to your wants and needs the happier you will be.
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Old 11-25-2012, 03:28 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: victoria, bc
Posts: 7
Re: 6.5x284 questions

I looked into that stuff and you are dead right.

As yet I don't really know what would be the right avenue to take but I think I am going to at least stay with the 6.5 family as an entry point in whatever case style.

Even if I pick up a swedish mauser for cheap and skope it I can have a lot of fun learning to reload with that and there are damn fine rifles in their own right.

Question, what is the cut off between short and long actions with cartridge length (I would likely go with savage actions) and with those actions can I simply swap out the bolt if for example I started with the 6.5x55 and then changed to the creedmoor or the 284 for example?
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:15 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 878
Re: 6.5x284 questions

Good luck finding a cheap Swedish mauser. For what most of the Swedes go for these days, you would be within spitting distance of a new Savage or Weatherby Vanguard. A couple hundred dollars on top of that would probably get you a Tikka in 6.5x55.

The newer actions are stronger and will allow you to load the 6.5x55 to its potential whereas the Swede milsurp will not.

Short actions generally involve cartridges with an OAL of 2.8" or less. It is possible to load longer in some short actions. There are also modifications that can be made to allow longer COAL's in a short action.

Personally, I prefer the long actions primarily because most of my favorite cartridges are long action cartridges.

The 6.5x55 is just long enough to require a long action. The .284 Winchester was originally designed for a short action. However, both the .284 and the 6.5-284 Norma benefit ballistically from being chambered in a long action. The 6.5 Creedmoor is a short action cartridge (so is the .260 Remington) and was designed specifically to provide maximum powder capacity with 140 class bullets in a short action.

To switch between any of these chamberings does not involve a bolt swap. The case head diameters of the respective cartridges you listed will all use the same boltface. To switch between these, you will need to replace the barrel. If you go with a Savage, the barrel can be changed with a barrel wrench and the correct headspace gauges.

However, swapping between any of these cartridges begs the question "Why would you want to?" The Creedmore is a step down from the 6.5x55. Both the 6.5x55 and the Creedmore are a step down from the .284, but are in the same general class of cartridges. You are essentially proposing something akin to swapping back and forth between a .308 and a 30-06. A waste of money and effort, IMO.

The best advice I can give you regarding the 6.5's (or any cartridge for that matter) is to decide on the level of performance you are after and work backward from there to select the cartridge you want and the rifle you want to put it in. You are, in practical terms, in the research phase of a project. Thoroughly done homework will save you a lot of money and aggravation and go a long way toward preventing buyer's remorse when you do make your decision.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:42 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Northeast
Posts: 2,284
Re: 6.5x284 questions

On the 6,5x284 being a barrel burner, I agree with the prior posts. I have found that it wil last the same or longer than most of the cartridges used for 1000 yard big game hunting. I have seen the Weatherby cartridges burn out barrels in 500 rounds which is less than half the life of the 6.5x284, 7, and 300 Mag used in similiar fashion. Barrel life is largely a function of powder weight in relation to bore diameter, and influenced heavily by how much barrel heat is generated when shooting. This is where the 6.5x284 earned it's reputation with the target crowd. Compared to the cartridges they typically used they burned up barrels at a faster rate. Particularly since the often shoot hot. It did however give superior ballistics with low recoil, which to many was well worth the trade off.

"Let us speak courteously, deal fairly, and keep ourselves armed and ready"-T. Roosevelt
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Old 11-26-2012, 03:44 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: victoria, bc
Posts: 7
Re: 6.5x284 questions


the reason I mentioned the swede is because I was under the impression that it was a smaller cartridge than the creedmoor. I assumed that because when I look at velocity tables for both with the same weight bullet the swede is a lot less.

Looking into your post comments I double checked and found two things. One the swede is a bigger cartridge if only a smidge more (.225cm3), but two, it does as far as my info says has a lot less velocity (2651fps vs 2820fps) and less energy of course. This I find very puzzling. Obviously I am missing something. I don't think it is barrel length or powder type though. Now that I think about it a bit, all those swede cartridges might be loaded for the old rifles only knowing that the metallurgy might have more flaws back in that era as opposed to modern technology.

Were the old cartridges or the cartridges for old rifles that much under grain capacity than current ammo?

swede rifles are cheap here. I can pick one up for a little over 200 bucks any day of the week for a ww2 issue in fair to well worn condition but still a good shooter. For me it's not a bad idea insofar as it gets me out shooting and reloading on a budget. You do make a good point about getting a new savage for just a little bit more.
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Old 11-26-2012, 04:03 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: victoria, bc
Posts: 7
Re: 6.5x284 questions


That is what I figured about the magnum stuff, but the odd time there is a legitimate reason why two seemingly same things have different performances.

I was heavily involved in motorcycle repliracers for years and like shooting it seems, the old guard, not all mind you, seem to get married to myth and anecdotall rationalizing. In this case that the 30 cal or the 30-06 is the only thing worth shooting and that all others are inferior and are just plain not worth using.

Personally, I prefer to innovate and go with the science than stick with tradition just because it's safe.
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