Deciding calibers?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by shifty06, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. shifty06

    shifty06 Well-Known Member

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    I am undetermined in which caliber to order a custom rifle and up for segestions.

    Will be shooting out to 800 yds. Maybe even further. This rifle will see the occasional local rifle match. (600yd). But primarily it will be for long range coyote whacking. If I could use it out west that would be great but not expecting so (have a 7mm WhiSuM for that.)

    1. It needs long accurate barrel life
    2. Good ballistics
    3. Ecenomical
    In that order.

    Thoughts were A .270, 6.5x47lapua, .243 like post says open to segestions I would not be against another WhiSuM but don't think they have a long barrel life.

    If you have a segestions please comment why you like/dislike it.

    I also roll my own. So loading is not a problem.

    Thanks, shifty
     
  2. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    The 270 and 243 are going to have marginal barrel life. Not all that familiar with the 6.5x47 but it should be a real good 600 match gun.

    My recommendation would be a 6.5x284 and get the barrel nitrided for easy cleaning and longer barrel life.

    One of these days I planning on getting a Copper in 6.5x24 with 26" 8 twist barrel. They're as good as a custom for under $2K.

    Other than that, for barrel life go with the 6.5x47.

    Good Shooting and welcome to the forum!
     

  3. shifty06

    shifty06 Well-Known Member

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    I was also thinking about the 6.5 creedmore and the 260 remington. I heard that the 6.5x284 was a barrel burner. But thats what i have heard not what I have experienced first hand.

    Shifty
     
  4. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, the 6.5x284 will be a little hard on barrels. I've heard some good things about the Creedmore and the 6.5x55 as well.
     
  5. shifty06

    shifty06 Well-Known Member

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    I have also been thinking about just goin with another 7mm WhiSuM and having one with a barrel twist rate of 1-8" and getting the one I have now re-barreled with 1-11" for lighter 100-140gr. bullets for long range coyote whacking.

    Another reason is I will not have 2 different kinds of brass, also I already just bought a nice set of 7mm WSM dies, primers, and maybe powder but i would have to test that.

    But all that is short term cost savings. when replacing a barrel every 1100-1300 rounds. compared to 2500+ rounds, and savings in powder consumption.

    another problem I am having is that I like to shoot one caliber learn all about where and what it does (yardage/wind/temps.) that way when I go on my once a year elk trips I know exactly what my rifle is going to do and I have been practicing all year long and on some smaller sized game.

    But If I can find a caliber that has the same ballistics as my 7mm WSM and at better barrel life I would be all over it. Shoot it all year then bring out the "heavy hitter" so to speak when I went west.

    I guess that I will have to start looking them up on my ballistics calculator. and seeing what comes close to that of a 7mm WhiSuM. and going form there.

    Another driver of this is that i have a right handed rifle and I am left handed. Not a big deal, I have grown up with right handed bolts but man it sure is nice to have a left handed bolt. (had a model 700 sps varmint 22-250 left handed. was the biggest piece of crap i ever owned.) (Now shooting a Winchester model 70) Nice rifle and groups amazing with factory 150gr. super-x ammo. haven't tried reloads yet just waiting on a nice day to go to the range.

    I believe this is what they say about having your cake and eating it too. lol

    Sorry for the rant just wanted you to be fully informed about what all aspects I am looking at.


    thanks!! Shifty.
     
  6. Swamplord

    Swamplord Well-Known Member

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    maybe the 300 WSM is your answer ? it will hit elk harder at all ranges you mentioned..... barrel life is better than the 6.5x84 or the 7mm WSM.... brass can be easily necked up from 7WSM to 300 WSM and vice versa....... the 300 WSM is also proving to be exceptionally accurate and a lot of long range hunters and target shooters are using it.....
    how about a switchbarrel ? just get a 7mmWSM barrel and 300 WSM in the same rifle system, save some cash not having to buy an extra scope, mounts, stock, action...etc... use the savings to buy more bullets, powder and shoot more........
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  7. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  8. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Feenix!

    Or 7mm-08 is another good option, since several companies are offering high BC hunting bullets in the 7mm diameter. A 7mm-08 stuffed with some Berger 168 VLD Hunting Match bullets would be a perfect 600 yard gun, with a super high BC bullet and the flatter trajectory.

    However, the .308 Win is hard to beat. I have always loved .308's and have had several over the years. Still have my 700 5R .308 and that thing is a true tack-driver.
     
  9. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    I agree with the 300 WSM as far as barrel life and similar ballistics to the 7. But the 7 WSM case is a bit longer than the 300 WSM - different headspace. Also the 300 has Norma brass available.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  10. CB11WYO

    CB11WYO Well-Known Member

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    My vote would go 6.5 x 47 Lapua.

    Most my experience is with the 6x47 version which is VERY accurate. I've killed antelope to 825 yards with it (yes, it's quite low on energy at that distance) but the 6.5 should do pretty well for your application I would think. Very pleasant to shoot as well.
     
  11. shifty06

    shifty06 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys for the responses. all with great ideas.

    the problem with the 300 WSM is that they can be necked down but it also read somewhere (accurate shooter.) it has to be fire formed.

    I like the switch barrel idea but the problem I have with that is that it seems (flimsy) and I am sure they are not just kinda haunts me with getting the barrel in the same depth headspace wise, and would it have a effect on the load I developed. I'm not sure how these work never been around one before.
    Would like more info on this please. or pointed in the right direction.
    thanks.

    down side to 300WSM is that it is not a economical cartridge at 65-70gr. of powder. and barrel life is not much better than the 7mm.

    I also like the idea of the .308 lots of barrel life for me to develop several good loads. big game to varmints. bullets everywhere for it. and If i happen to be somewhere and loose my ammo im sure i can find it (well maybe not now). And lots of trigger time with it burning half the powder the WhiSuM's do, and about 2 times the barrel life of the 300.

    Thanks for all the great info and advise keep it coming. Please.

    EDIT: I have been looking at the 6.5x47 lapua and 6.5 Creedmoor but I have heard that the 6.5x47 gave excellent barrel life. not sure on the 6.5 but assume it would be about the same. havent found any loading data on the 6.5x47 yet.


    Thanks,
    Shifty
     
  12. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    About 4-5 times the barrel life of the big magnum calibers, and probably about the same with the WSM calibers.

    Average is 8,000-10,000 rounds of barrel life for most heavy-barreled .308's that have been well maintained and not abused or loaded ultra-hot handloads for. You will definitely get good life and longevity, that's for sure. They are excellent cartridges for deer hunting too.

    I loaded up some for a buddy of mine to test out of his gun. I loaded some 165gr Nosler Accubonds wtih 44.0gr of Hodgdon Varget, Hornady Match brass, and Fed 210 primers. Everything is identical to my target loads for 168gr HPBT Noslers, except these are 165 AB's for hunting. He should have very good results with them.

    The .308 Win is a great caliber for deer sized game out to 500-600 yards with proper handloads.

    Don't underestimate the 7mm-08 either, which is a necked-down .308 to accept the flatter shooting 7mm bullet. I also have one of these, and they are recoil friendly, but out to 600 yards are very flat shooting, and will put the stomp on a whitetail with no problem. Alot of people tend to underestimate the 7mm-08, and generalize it as a "youth and women caliber"....Which is far from the truth. It does make an excellent youth and women caliber, but there is nothing less manly about shooting one, I assure you. You don't always have to shoot a .375 H&H to prove your a man, you know what I mean?
     
  13. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    I think you will find the 300 WSM barrel life to be significantly more than the 7. The 7, with slightly more case capacity and a good bit less diameter neck will burn a throat faster than the 300. No doubt about it. With proper care you should easily see 2000 rounds of accuracy with a 300 WSM and I have read of a guy competing very well with one having 4000 down the tube.

    Bottom line, there is always going to be a trade off. The more performance you want, the more powder you are going to burn and the quicker your barrel will go, especially with the smaller cals.

    You can mitigate loss of barrel life by nitriding which will also give you a little more performance, plus several benefits. If I wanted to smack coyotes @ 800, I would go with a nitrided 6.5x284. If you don''t want to do the nitride, I would recommend the 6.5x47 for a great 600 yd target rifle, moderate 800 yd coyote killer, with economical shooting and good barrel life.

    Comes down to priorities. The Creedmore and the Swede are another couple of options. Sharper necks lead to longer barrel life.
     
  14. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    Sharper necks do lead to longer barrel life....Which is why I suggest the .280 Ackley Improved. You also get 7Mag performance out of a non-magnum caliber. So you use less powder, and b/c it's a non-belted caliber your brass also last longer for more reloads.

    For the OP's application, my #1 vote is for .280 Ackley Improved 40* Shoulder. #2 is .308 Win. #3 is 7mm-08