6.5 Barrel Life

Greyfox

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Running 6.5 hunting loads with 140 class bullets at 3000FPS
(55-60gr powder), barrel life is largely dependent on shooting practices. Shoot long strings in hot weather, I have seen 800-1000 before a .25MOA degradation of accuracy. Keep the barrel less then warm to the touch and keep carbon build up under control, I have seen 1500+ rounds. My smaller cased 6.5 Lapua/CM’s(39-42gr powder) in PRS competition /hot weather gets me 2200-2500 rounds….My pet hunting Cooper 6.5x284, 12 years old, and babied, has 1100 rounds through it, no degradation of accuracy, or throat wear….expecting 1500+ out of it.
 

Dankno

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Did a long action AR in 260 Rem a few years back. Under 600 rounds so far but already seeing fire-cracking in the throat. Mostly load development with three or four timed (for fun, not ‘real’ competition) UKD long range attempts. Currently the repeatability is still there, but I’ve started leaving that upper at home for anything less that 600 yards.
 

Lefty G-gear

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I am thinking about building a 6.5 rifle. I would like something fast and flat shooting but has a barrel life of 1500-2000 rounds. Thinking of 6.5 PRC, 6.5 Weatherby RPM, or 6.5 SAUM. I will have it built with the same stock, barrel, and action as my 28 Nosler just something I could put more rounds down for range time. I would also be open to other cartridges that people have experience with that may fit the bill. I am not interested in a Creedmoor. I guess my long winded question is what should I expect for barrel life out of these calibers?
The availability/unavailability of brass affects your choice.
I'd secure the brass acquisition first. :D









LOAD DATA


 
Last edited:

JP_Gunner

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Central NC
Thanks for the responses. After the first response I realized I should have worded the question a bit differently.

I should rephrase the question to what's the round count in peoples experience I should expect before seeing accuracy decrease by more than .25" in each cartridge? Fast and flat are relative terms.
 

Mike from Texas

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Not sure what you consider fast and flat but I’m shooting my 24” 260AI @2950 with 147 ELDMs and RL26.

Not sure what life will be but it sure likes this combo. It’s a rebarreled R700 5R Gen 2 with a 7.5 twist Brux barrel.
 

7.62 Gunner

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Jan 9, 2022
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Idaho
I am thinking about building a 6.5 rifle. I would like something fast and flat shooting but has a barrel life of 1500-2000 rounds. Thinking of 6.5 PRC, 6.5 Weatherby RPM, or 6.5 SAUM. I will have it built with the same stock, barrel, and action as my 28 Nosler just something I could put more rounds down for range time. I would also be open to other cartridges that people have experience with that may fit the bill. I am not interested in a Creedmoor. I guess my long winded question is what should I expect for barrel life out of these calibers?
I've been running a 6.5 saum for over 6 years.
I use strictly H1000, I pulled my last barrel at 700 rounds and sold it for a shorty to run suppressed.
The barrel had very little erosion and no firecracking, the guy who bought it loves it.

The 6.5 saum is a better case than the prc, and with H1000 it'll lope along and get you better barrel life since you don't have to stomp on it.
I'll never be without mine
 

Radman

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TN
I am thinking about building a 6.5 rifle. I would like something fast and flat shooting but has a barrel life of 1500-2000 rounds. Thinking of 6.5 PRC, 6.5 Weatherby RPM, or 6.5 SAUM. I will have it built with the same stock, barrel, and action as my 28 Nosler just something I could put more rounds down for range time. I would also be open to other cartridges that people have experience with that may fit the bill. I am not interested in a Creedmoor. I guess my long winded question is what should I expect for barrel life out of these calibers?
I shoot 4000 fps 50 grains in my .22-250's. Many folks get SEVERAL thousand rounds out of one barrel. (On the other hand you can trash a barrel in 35 - 50 shots) Rapid-firing is the enemy!
When target shooting I leave my bolt open & often use a battery powered air pump to cool the barrel. (When hunting with a cold barrel, you could squeeze off two rounds relatively fast without generating too much heat)
I think that the numbers you mention are easily obtainable with just a little care. Just my experiences.
 

Csbc4fun

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Pismo Beach CA
The availability/unavailability of brass affects your choice.
I'd secure the brass acquisition first. :D









LOAD DATA


Good information and I applaud the effort! GunsValley appears to be a scam website. Have you ever successfully purchased from them?
 

Lefty G-gear

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Good information and I applaud the effort! GunsValley appears to be a scam website. Have you ever successfully purchased from them?
No. But a few years ago I bought some adg brass from creedmoorsports.com and also at the adg website. (7mm SAUM) = Get some via waiting list. (I got the standard, not polished brass.) There was no waiting period back then.

I used Lapua brass in my M21 .308 that I had. It came with a Douglas barrel. - I made up 5-loads (a half-grain increment), 5-rds. each with the 168-gr. SMK and H4895 powder, and they all shot about 5/8" - so I went with the hottest load of 40.5.
Lapua is good brass.
 
Last edited:

2buffalo

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USA
I've been running a 6.5 saum for over 6 years.
I use strictly H1000, I pulled my last barrel at 700 rounds and sold it for a shorty to run suppressed.
The barrel had very little erosion and no firecracking, the guy who bought it loves it.

The 6.5 saum is a better case than the prc, and with H1000 it'll lope along and get you better barrel life since you don't have to stomp on it.
I'll never be without mine
Why is the SAUM better than the PRC?
 

sable tireur

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Oct 8, 2010
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Good information and I applaud the effort! GunsValley appears to be a scam website. Have you ever successfully purchased from them?

Guns Valley IS a scam site. This same format is used by dozens of scammers who do not accept credit cards and only accept Zelle:

1657039721204.png


The rest of your suggested suppliers are out of stock for the cases sampled.

We (several competition shooters) started using the what is now referred to as the 6.5 SAUM (6.5 GAP 4S) over a decade ago fueled with H-1000.

"The the same cartridge as the 6.5 SAUM, the GAP stands for GA Precision, who originally made the cartridge famous during owner of GA Precision, George Gardner's use of the caliber during professional competition rifle shooting in 2012."

https://www.loaddevelopment.com/6-5-gap-4s-6-5-saum/

1657040554056.png

George Gardner shooting 3.89″ Group at 1157 yds with his 6.5 GAP 4S. Source: Facebook

It was not difficult to achieve well over 1,500 shots even when competition was involved. The major difference was that before Hornady actually made a commercial run of the cases, we had to neck down and neck turn a ton of 7mm RSAUM and .300 RSAUM brass from any suppliers having stock.

Now, if you want better barrel life while pursuing some of these 6.5mm cartridges, I suggest talking to Bartlein Barrels regarding the newer 'BB' barrel steel:

"Bartlein Barrels is pleased to announce the release of a new barrel material. Working with the mill and testing different types of material and tweaking the material over the last few years and with testing having been performed by ammunition makers we now have a different grade of material that we have had made and is proprietary to us.

The material has been proven in lab testing and in outside real world testing to provide a barrel life that is 1.5 to 2 times longer than the standard 416 grade of material.

We are calling the material 400MODBB."


So, skip all the comparisons and buy a new barrel made from the BB Steel then go enjoy your shooting.

Enjoy!

:)
 

2buffalo

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Messages
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Location
USA
Guns Valley IS a scam site. This same format is used by dozens of scammers who do not accept credit cards and only accept Zelle:

View attachment 376623

The rest of your suggested suppliers are out of stock for the cases sampled.

We (several competition shooters) started using the what is now referred to as the 6.5 SAUM (6.5 GAP 4S) over a decade ago fueled with H-1000.

"The the same cartridge as the 6.5 SAUM, the GAP stands for GA Precision, who originally made the cartridge famous during owner of GA Precision, George Gardner's use of the caliber during professional competition rifle shooting in 2012."

https://www.loaddevelopment.com/6-5-gap-4s-6-5-saum/

View attachment 376629
George Gardner shooting 3.89″ Group at 1157 yds with his 6.5 GAP 4S. Source: Facebook

It was not difficult to achieve well over 1,500 shots even when competition was involved. The major difference was that before Hornady actually made a commercial run of the cases, we had to neck down and neck turn a ton of 7mm RSAUM and .300 RSAUM brass from any suppliers having stock.

Now, if you want better barrel life while pursuing some of these 6.5mm cartridges, I suggest talking to Bartlein Barrels regarding the newer 'BB' barrel steel:

"Bartlein Barrels is pleased to announce the release of a new barrel material. Working with the mill and testing different types of material and tweaking the material over the last few years and with testing having been performed by ammunition makers we now have a different grade of material that we have had made and is proprietary to us.

The material has been proven in lab testing and in outside real world testing to provide a barrel life that is 1.5 to 2 times longer than the standard 416 grade of material.

We are calling the material 400MODBB."

So, skip all the comparisons and buy a new barrel made from the BB Steel then go enjoy your shooting.

Enjoy!

:)
I can look it up but just curious if you know. Do they make their carbon fiber barrels with this? Thanks.
 

sable tireur

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Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,936
Not to my knowledge. I haven't talked with them since this release so a quick look or conversation might be in order.

I have used several barrels made with this steel but I have not tested to destruction yet. The manufacturing delays from massive consumer orders taking place today have really crippled many of us. Even the retailers have slim pickings for barrels these days, let alone those made from special steel.

Regards.
 

nmbsniper

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Joined
Jul 30, 2016
Messages
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Location
Florida
My police sniper rifle had 10k documented rounds. It started life as Remington 700 30-06 in the 80's. It was sent to H&S Precision about 1989 and re-barreled into a 308. When I received it a few years later it had less than 400 rounds thru it. I shot between 80-140 rounds per month on average. I competed at Snipercraft for many years and continued to go thru several police sniper schools in addition to regular training. At 9500 rounds it continued to hold less than 1 MOA. We we able to get funding for new rifles and I was allowed to purchase my rifle from the city, the complete package with Pelican case, for $100.

I decided that at 10k rounds I'd re-barrel it into a 300WM. That's were it has been for the last 10 years or so.

Barrels that shoot magnum rounds won't last as long, 1500 or so. My 308 barrel showed signs of wear at the throat I was told by the rifle builder.
 

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