Help me make sure I understand my 6.5 long range hunting choices correctly....

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by cdherman, Jul 5, 2010.

  1. cdherman

    cdherman Well-Known Member

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    I have had a pleasant day researching what to do with my 700BDL 25-06. as noted in a earlier post, its a gift from my father 30+ years ago, but doesn't shoot well, and besides -- I want another 6.5mm. I have an old sweede that shoots .5 MOA groups and somehow that sort of experience seems common...

    So the first obvious choice is 6.5-06 or 6.5-06 AI That would be easy I suppose, and allow me to use my ample supply of 25-06 brass. But I like the long VLD bullets and those tend to be long COAL once you get them out to the lands. I might run out of magazine length. So that's a potential negative. And I really don't like the idea of having 6.5-06 catridges laying around with 25-06 headstamps. I am a Murphy believer -- what can go wrong, will go wrong. I have visions some of some distant day that a cartridge that I lost or misplaced getting fed into a 25-06 and someone losing an eye or worse.....

    I could go with a .260 Rem or 6.5x55 Swede or the AI version of either of those. But the velocity for a long range hunting round is not quite on par with the 6.5-06 or 6.5-284. And the magazine would need some alterations for proper feeding.

    Or I could get the 6.5-284 That would give me correct headstamped brass. I will not shoot this very much, so barrel life is not a huge issue. Of course, there would be magazine work to be done to get it to feed correctly, but only the 6.5-06 avoids that. I also do not need more than three cartrigdes in a gun, ever. I am almost a single shot shooter, at least in mentality. Finally, the 6.5x284 in a long action would allow me greater flexibility in terms of bullet seating depth.

    I see no point in trying for a belted magnum in my 700 Rem action, so I have not considered the magnums.

    I think I am going to narrow my choices to the 6.5-06 and 6.5x284 and start looking for a gunsmith. If I find one I like and he has a prefernce, then I will allow him free reign. Otherwise, I think I'll go with the 6.5x284

    Can anyone pick apart my logic? Add to it?

    Thanks in advance....
     
  2. zuba

    zuba Well-Known Member

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    I have a savage in 30-06 and its magazine feeds 6.5x284 rounds with no major modifications. It might take less an you think to go that route.
     

  3. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Look at the 6.5 280 rem AI. The case body is a little longer. the AI has more powder capacity
    And you want need to modify the bolt or the action rails.

    It is about the most you can get out of a 3006 size case. you can use the 2506,270win
    280rem and 3006 cases to fire form and neck size this cartrige.

    Just a thought.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  4. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

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    cd,
    I was also trying to make up my mind which 6.5 to get. My only two choices were the 6.5-284 and 6.5-06. I was actually leaning toward the 06 but ran across a 6.5-284 and went that route. The reason I was going with the 06 variety was because of brass availability. I have alot of it already and it's cheap and everywhere. The ballistics between the two and almost identical.
    I could not be happier with the 6.5-284 though. It is extremely accurate with everything I have tried in it. Lapua brass is pricey but darn nice stuff. Worth every penny. I'm shooting sub MOA out to 500yds, but only because that's as far as I got right now. Good luck. JohnnyK.
     
  5. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    +1 on the 6.5-.280 AI.
     
  6. cdherman

    cdherman Well-Known Member

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    But it still leaves me with the problem of COAL and magazine length issues, right? Especially if useing long VLD bullets?

    I know that I could have it short throated, but the problem is that I don't really know what my final projectile will be -- its a hunting gun.....

    And I am too lazy to fireform all those cases. I didn't mention that in my first post, but I view fireforming as a waste of my time and my barrel. I used to have enough spare time that I enjoyed trips to the range "just because" but now I have so little spare time, that my range visits are rare and I view them as a necessary evil to get my guns in shape. Kinda sad......

    In fact, part of my decision to build a custom gun is based on the realization that I have more money at this point of my life than I have time to futz with a finicky old 25-06. I really want a gun that I make a half dozen trips to the range and have a great load worked up. That never happened with the old 25-06.

    Thanks for all the great ideas so far....
     
  7. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    In that case , Go to a 260 rem (6.5x308) and with the long action you will be able to seat the
    bullet any where you wan't to and still fit in the mag.

    I would however not recomend building a rifle arround one bullet because if it does not shoot
    your screwed.

    Lots of people have hunting loads that will fit in the mag and have accuracy loads that must be
    loaded one at a time.(The shorter rounds are not that much worse and with the right bullet can
    be just as accurate at most hunting distances.

    One more thing: A good custom rifle with a medium tapered barrel will not be finicky to reload
    for (One of the reasons for going to a custom rifle). Also Free Bore is not a bad thing if the rifle
    is built with minimum headspace. I have seen and own some rifles with lots of freebore that
    will shoot under 1/10 of an inch groups and some are even belted.

    There is no free ride and if you wan't accuracy and performance you get out of it what you put
    into it.

    J E CUSTOM