help 6.5 bullet suggestions

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by gillettehunter, Jul 21, 2012.

  1. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter Well-Known Member

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    I have a 6.5-06 that should be finished next week and thought I'd ask for some bullet suggestions. Rifle will be used for hunting. Possibly Bighorn sheep this fall as I drew a tag. Deer and antelope. I have guns better suited for elk, but they aren't out of the question. Out to say 800 yards. I'm biased against Berger's after I used them in Africa 5 years ago. Different caliber and 5 years could mean improvements so I'll listen. I'm generally looking at Scirocco's, Accubonds and SST's in that order. 130-140 gr bullet. BC over .500 is preferred. Consistent performance on game is vital. I expect to get close to 3000 FPS with 140's. Suggestions? Likes ? Dislikes? Please help especially if you shoot a .26 caliber currently. Thanks Bruce
     
  2. rtsj

    rtsj Well-Known Member

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    Very interested as well!!lightbulb

    Roy
     

  3. rtsj

    rtsj Well-Known Member

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    Care to elaborate on some Berger experiences in Africa that may have turned you off of them? Curiosity killed the cat you know!:D

    Roy
     
  4. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter Well-Known Member

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    I was shooting a .300 WSM w/ Berger 168 gr bullets. Took a shot at last light at a Red Hartebeest at about 165 yards. Hit the front leg just at the point where it hits the body. My PH suggested it was 1/2 inch too low... My fault... Bullet basically exploded. It did NOT break the leg. That's the bullets fault. We recovered the Hartebeest 20 hours later and over 5 miles away. I wasn't impressed with its performance. I could of been 2 inches higher and still not of penetrated.....
    The new rifle is a .26 caliber and not a .30. The sectional density is better which should help penetration. My big question about Berger's in the .26 caliber is, are the jackets tough enough to give me good penetration? Or do I have to stay away from bone if I choose to use them?
    I have read good reports on the Sciroccos but the are also reportedly hard to get to shoot in some rifles. Also only available in a 130 gr bullet.
    The Accubonds seem like a possible choice. Used on in my 25-06 last year on a whitetail. After a shot through the ribs he went close to 200 yards. I was surprised at how far he went with a decent shot. Makes me a little nervous.
    I have had great success w/ the Barnes TTSX bullets. Biggest problem there is that the BC is so low..... Hence the question for some real world experience. Thanks Bruce
     
  5. coyotezapper

    coyotezapper Well-Known Member

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    Barnes 127 LRX. The BC is only .468 but you should be able to run them fast enough to make up for the low BC. Performance on game will be second to none!!!
     
  6. CliffM

    CliffM Well-Known Member

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    I used the Bergers on 4 deer and antelope last year with what I consider perfect performance, golf ball sized exit holes, from 250 to 600 yds.
    I am looking at trying some Matrix bullets in 140's and if I can get them made, 155's mostly for elk. Based on what I have seen of their performance in 270's I think they would be great.
    Cliff
     
  7. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a bad shot the bergers work for me all the time. Try the 130 acubond or ttsx
     
  8. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    140gr hunting VLDs from Berger has my vote. Check out Jeremy's 925 yards shot on a bull elk off 6.5x.284 ...

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4o6n6rRlQs&feature=bf_next&list=PL4464056A4B9F9AF7"]Jeremy 925 yard elk! - YouTube[/ame]
     
  9. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter Well-Known Member

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    Hi FEENIX. Thanks for the video. I've watched the long range hunting shows and Berger is a sponsor. The fact that they are a sponsor makes me a little uncomfortable. Some shows use and tout a product even tho there are better ones out there, because its part of the contract. I have seen some great shots made. The question, is there anything better? How is the wound channel at a distance like that? If I shoot a elk on the point of the shoulder at 50 yards will that Berger penetrate or blow up? I'm looking for real world users.
    My Wy sheep hunt is a once in a lifetime for me. Its extremely unlikely that I'll ever draw again or be able to afford another sheep hunt. Don't want a poor bullet choice by me to screw it up. I also don't want to see any animal suffer because I made the wrong choice. Thanks for the help. Bruce
     
  10. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Hi Bruce....I have shot a 6.5 for over thirty years now and have killed a lot of game with one including 25-30 bull elk, lots of deer, and a few bears. Oh ya, one moose! I have had some very good results at times with Bergers and some not so hot. I hesitate to be too critical because everyone has their favorites that work for them. With a 6.5, you have to remember that mass is not your companion so the range and game animal being hunted becomes more critical than if you were shooting a 30 with a similar bullet. Having said that, out to 600 yards, I don't think there is a better bullet made for a 6.5 than the old tried and true Nosler partition. They will expand at low velocity and hold together at high velocity. They are VERY predictable and I used them extensively to kill everything that I mentioned. The downside is when you want to extend the range to 800 yards or so, b.c. becomes a problem. IMO, and this is just that, MO based on my experiences, the Bergers do their best work at mid velocities especially with a 6.5. I have seen them explode too fast at high velocity and not expand at low velocity. I think they are great between about 2100'-2700' give or take depending upon what you hit. My experience with the AB's is they are better at high and mid velocity but not so good when it falls off (and not down to 1800' as advertised). I would probably use a ballistic tip with the Nosler if I were going to shoot beyond 600 yards. The A-Max is a good bullet at long range but is VERY explosive close up. I know this doesn't completely help you with your question, but this might give you some food for thought on your most likely shooting distances. As some have mentioned previously, you may find two loads that will work together for close to mid and one for long. At long range, you usually have a lot of time to change loads if necessary. Good luck and good hunting!......Rich
     
  11. bigbrother

    bigbrother Well-Known Member

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    I have shot the 140 Bergers out of my 6.5x284 for the last 4 years. I've taken ground hogs at 15 yards to a Whitetail at 1100. Positive expansion at 1100 albeit not impressive as the impact velocity was low. I've not had an issue with them and wouldn't hesitate to use them on a once in a lifetime sheep hunt. I've got them loaded up for this year as well, and no Berger does not sponsor me!!!! LOL

    That being said, I've shot a bunch of deer with the 140 AMAX which is a super bullet but they are soft and inside of 300 yards will make a mess of a deer. From there to 756 (longest kill on a whitetail with one) they expand beautifully and make a short job of finding one that hits well. The only reason I switched to the Berger was the higher BC and my quest to kill a groundhog at a mile. (since then the farm I hunted was sold into pieces and now I have no place to shoot one that far!) But the first fall I used them for deer, I took one through the ribs at 1100 yards and haven't looked back.

    Stay away from the SMK, you'll get erratic expansion and sometimes none. The SST is a great bullet as well as if you're concerned about the Berger or the AMAX, it would be my pick although the bc isn't as good (granted it's not that bad either). The great thing about them is they're not as expensive as match bullets and are very consistent and typically very accurate. I run them exclusively in my 7 carry gun at 3120 and have taken light and heavy game with it close and far.
     
  12. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I haveshot over a dozen antelope and deer from 200 to 1000 yards using the Berger 140 grain Hunting VLD's at 2970 FPS out of my 6.5x284. All, one shot chest/ shoulder area with complete penetration. One inch entrance, 2-3" exit holes with major internal damage. Also, one of the few bullets that will retain 1800FPS with 1000 ft/pds of energy at 1000 yards. Not too many other bullets will match the ballistic performance. I know several other shooters that have had similar success with this bullet. I wouldn't let your past experience influence giving them a try.
     
  13. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys. You really came through for me. I bought a box of Bergers to try. After 5 years things can improve and I'm in a different caliber/ bullet weight. I appreciate the advice. Bruce
     
  14. Thomas1226

    Thomas1226 Member

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    Barnes 127 Grain LRX bullets. Everything you shoot if placed right will drop in its tracks.