Tuff time making a final decision

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by jayph, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. 6.5-06 140gr VLD

    17 vote(s)
  2. .280 Rem 168 VLD

    20 vote(s)
  3. Other (please post)

    14 vote(s)
  1. jayph

    jayph Member

    Jun 7, 2008
    I have read all over the internet in my reloading books and other books and I still can't make up my mind. I have narrowed it down too these two.

    6.5-06 shooting the 140gr Berger VLD
    .280 Rem shooting the 168 Berger VLD
    (hoping the rifle will shoot that bullet)

    This rifle is being built for deer and antelope sized game at longer ranges. Feel free to give me opinions on each and what you might choose. If you choose other and post a caliber I am not intersted in magnum's at this time. Thanks in advance.
  2. hammertyme

    hammertyme Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    I can see why this choice would be tuff. SInce neither the antelope or the deer need a 168 grain bullet I would opt for the 6.5. Plus with the 6.5
    one can shoot 100gr ballistic tips at Mach? for coyotes and rodents. Think the 6.5 has more options and a lot less recoil. No recoil doesn't bother me.


  3. MagMan

    MagMan Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2002
    If your going with the 280 at least have the common courtesy to have it improved as in Ackley.:D

    That one is next on my wish list. You gain some velocity, limit case stretch, can still shoot factory ammo (surprisingly well) and then there is the cool factor.
  4. Varmint Hunter

    Varmint Hunter Well-Known Member

    Dec 26, 2001
    When considering cartridge selection for a new custom barreled rifle I always check one thing first - Will high quality brass be readily available for my new project rifle?

    That would make the 6.5x06 a more attractive option to me. It would also be a flatter shooting cartridge with less recoil. The only down side would be less throat life but that might not be a problem for a biggame rifle that isn't shot all that much.
  5. srhaggerty

    srhaggerty Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2004
    Go with a 7-08 or a .284.
    jsthntn247 likes this.
  6. Cobramach1

    Cobramach1 Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2008
    The 280 isn't necessary for those two game species and the 6.5 would be more versatile. I'd go with that or a 260 Remington. I just got a 260 that is shooting .21" groupings @ 100yds with 120gr Nosler's. It should take a few deer this year! :)
  7. benchrest

    benchrest Member

    Oct 31, 2008
    I would also opt for the 6.5. And on the 06 case you have enough room to shoot the heavier .264 bullets that have very, very high BC. And since it's going to be a custom gun anyway, I would go with the ackley version.

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    I would go with the 260 rem, 140g VLD. If you want more bang IMPROVE it but make sure you get a WAYATTS mag box instaled.

    Lots of brass to pick from neck it up neck it down.

    1000 yard deer killer all day long.

    I have to admit though 280AI does sound real sexy!!!!!!
  9. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2008
    My approach would be to ask myself how far do I want to shoot? Then take a look at the bullet/load pssibilites including brass options. Then run some ballistcs and check the performance. Personally, I would not shoot on an average size or bigger buck deer past bullet opening velocity which is about 1800 fps for a lot of bullets. If you put the shot in the right place and it pencil holes, you'll kill it, but will you find it. *If* you get the spine, you'll put it right down. Antelope are pretty delicate critters and are not likely to go far even with just a pencil hole. I consider a 270 to be about a 700-800 yd deer (buck) gun depending on the bullet/load and elevation.

    It really comes down to crunching the numbers, *or* your personal preference and accepting the performance of that preference.

    For me, the 270 Win is the bottom end of LR hunting, but that's just me.
  10. Kevin

    Kevin Well-Known Member

    Apr 27, 2002
    Of the two you mentioned the 6.5-06 will give you just a bit more range. Personally I would just go with a .284. It will be pretty inline with the trajectory of the 6.5-06 yet you will have a little bigger heavier bullet arriving at your target. It won't be to far behind an improved .280 and you won't have to fireform cases.
  11. devildoc

    devildoc Well-Known Member

    Feb 10, 2006
    look at the 6.5-284, sure you'll lose a little velocity compared to the 6.5-06 AI, but you'll get equal or better accuracy with a whole lot less trouble. Load her up with 4350, 4831SC or RL-22 and you'll be in business.
  12. TheReeper

    TheReeper Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2008
    If your thinking about shooting the 168grn Berger, I would go with the 7mm WSM. It will give a bit more power than the other cartridges you have listed. The 7mm WSM, with a 28" barrel, will push the 168grn at around 3200 to 3250fps.
  13. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

    Mar 25, 2007
    Go with the 6.5-06. It is no trouble to run 25-06 brass through the sizer and load it.

    From what I have seen this season out of my son's rifle on deer and elk, it is very impressive. He killed a cow last week at 370 yrds. Broke through the heavy shoulder bone on the on side, took the front of the lungs, broke the heavy shoulder bone on the off side. Recovered the bullet in a piece of meat when we were butchering last weekend. Have not weighed it yet. This was the 130g Scirocco mildly loaded @ 2950fps.

    I now have no reservations about the 6.5-06.


    PS When we built this rifle, we contacted the Ackley people and were told that the improved version of this was the least efficient of the Ackley improvements. Makes it that much easier. Ordered dies from RCBS off the shelf as well.
  14. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

    Mar 25, 2007
    One other thing, recoil is nill in a lightweight rifle. We did a 24" 8.5 twist.