Which 6.5?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by WYcoyote, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. WYcoyote

    WYcoyote Well-Known Member

    Jan 15, 2010
    Going to jump on the 6.5 bandwagon with a new barrel for a Savage 111 long action now chambered in .270 Win. I want a 24-25" or so medium to heavy sporter SS barrel for deer (not elk) or long range varmints. Looking for pretty good performance without going too crazy. Barrel life is absolutely no factor to me. 140gr Berger VLDs is my first choice for bullets, so I'm thinking a 1-8" twist.
    These are my main choices,
    6.5-.284 Norma
    6.5-06 AI
    6.5 Rem mag
    6.5 WSM

    I don't really want a .264 Win mag since I have a 7mm Rem mag already.
    A few issues I have are,

    Is the 6.5 WSM worth the extra fire and brimstone?
    Will I be able to seat the long VLD far enough out in the 06s'?
    Any feeding issues with the .284, 6.5 Rem, or the WSM?
    Will the 6.5-06 AI out perform the 6.5-.284?
    Which caliber should I get?

    Thanks for your opinions.
  2. AndyW

    AndyW Member

    Dec 2, 2008
    I decided on the 6.5x284. No messing with brass or fireforming and Lapua makes the best brass ready to go. Proven accurate to 1000 yards, myriad of load data available. lots of room in the long action to seat the VLD's out where they should be.

    You hear about 1000 round barrel life, but this is when guys shoot strings of 20 in competition. Really I don't think any of the others would be too barrel friendly either, with exception of the .260, but then it is over 200 fps slower.

  3. Derek M.

    Derek M. Well-Known Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    6.5x284 for me too. Lapua and Norma brass, 140 VLD. When I get the chance, will start test loads with Magnum powder.
  4. paleohntr

    paleohntr Member

    Dec 27, 2009
    6.5x284 for the same reasons posted above. I shoot 140gr Horn. SSTs in my rifle and use up all the mag length, it's a long action. Funny looking round, looks like a pencil shoved in the end of the case. The question you bring up about the '06 cases is valid, it all depends on how the rifle is chambered and if you want to load as a single shot.
  5. blipelt

    blipelt Well-Known Member

    Apr 5, 2008
    Take a look at the 260 and 260rogue. Good barrel life and you don't give up much to the 6.5X284. If I remember correctly lapua is making 308 brass with a small primer pocket that seems to be working rather well necked down to a 260. Don't really know to much about it yet since I have about five more months to wait for mine. I don't want to start to early or else the wait gets to be rather cruel.

    Last edited: Nov 23, 2010
  6. fj40mojo

    fj40mojo Well-Known Member

    Jul 25, 2009
    I'm gonna buck the trend and throw another option on the table. 6.5x55BJAI. Same advantage of having available Lapua and Norma brass except for the fire forming process, gets you right in the same velocity range as the 284 w/o the feeding issues.
  7. KPK

    KPK Well-Known Member

    Oct 11, 2010
    I think I would choose the 6.5x284 if I was going 6.5. I think for the build I'm working on now I'm going with the straight .284 shooting either 168 or 180 vlds, or 175g smk's. From what I'm reading the .284 can throw the 180's at near 2,950-3,000 fps with the right load and length with better barrel life.

    Am I wrong on this? I have a thing for 6.5's...should I stick with the 6.5x284?
  8. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    Since you say that barrel life is of no concern, I would opt for the X284.
    There are just too many positives that the other choices can't match.
    Any possible feeding issues will be small and easily overcome.

    And I wouldn't get too hung up on the 140gr either. The velocities achievable with 123s, 129s and 130s make them very attractive when deer are on the receiving end.
    The 140s aren't really needed for deer.
  9. Alan Griffith

    Alan Griffith Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2005
    None of your choices!

    6.5x47 Lapua. I'm pushing the 140 Berger VLD to over 2900+ and the 140 AB to about 2875 fps with Rel 17 from a 26" Broughton 1:8, 5C.

    Last edited: Nov 24, 2010
  10. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

    Dec 24, 2001
    I initially wanted the 6.5-284 but keep the idea at arms length due to the price of Lapua brass. I then really started considering the 6.5-06 AI because of the ballistic advantage, price and availability of brass.
    I was on this course until I ran across a Savage 12 BVSS in 6.5-284 at what I thought was a very good price ($599.99). I jumped on it and figured what the heck, just do it and bought the Lapua brass. I've been reloading for 25yrs and have used and prepped alot of brass during this time. It is the best brass I have ever used to date. Worth every penny IMO.
    I am impressed with the cartridge and rifle, it does everything the articles and other shooters say it will do. Good round, fun to shoot and accurate. JohnnyK.
  11. Alan Griffith

    Alan Griffith Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2005
    Lapua (and Norma) brass is ALWAYS a good reason to choose a caliber.

    Last edited: Nov 25, 2010
  12. Boss Hoss

    Boss Hoss Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2005
    Yes it is but Norma is a good 2nd choice. I use the Lapua for all of my 6.5 x284's(almost all of my others as well and Norma for the 6.5WSM. If you are going to build 1 the 6.5x284 is very tough to beat.

    Funny but found out that the Lapua 300 Win brass I had was actually made for them by Norma.
  13. trueblue

    trueblue Well-Known Member

    Feb 18, 2008
    6.5-06 ai