Thing about the future 6.5-06AI

nksmfamjp

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So, I’m thinking about a future hunting rifle. It will have a CIP length bottom metal. (Bighorn Origin) long action.

Basically, I’m planning a build around 6.5-06AI. The idea is to launch 143 ELD-X around 3100 fps or the Berger 156 EOL’s slightly slower from a 24” barrel.

First assumption, I’d like to use Lapua 30’06 and run it through a couple of bushings in a bushing die to get to 6.5-06 AI. I think the neck walls will be thick, but consistent....wonder how the thick necks will fit in the chamber?

Second, the velocity assumption above....can the 06 case do this or do I need to use the 280ai case. The Sherman is said to push 140’s at 3300fps at 26”. That’s a bit fast to me.

Third, freebore to be set based on the boat tail being even with the base of the neck when touching lands with 143gr ELDX bullet....either with the reamer or with a custom throat.

Forth, I assume I can get Redding to make a type S FL die and a siding chamber micrometer seater...I’m not seeing that exactly in their catalog....hmmm.

Lots of assumptions....is this gonna work out?
 

Jud96

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First off, I have nothing against the 6.5-06 Ackley and I think it’s a great cartridge. Having said that, I like to keep things simple and straight forward. If you’re starting off with a new action and new build, I would consider doing a magnum bolt. I would honestly look towards the .264 Win Mag. You can use Peterson or ADG 7mm Rem Mag brass and neck it down in one pass and be done. Both of those brass options are equal to Lapua in quality and durability. That cartridge will run 3100fps easily with the 143gr bullets. It’s an older cartridge but it’s a good one. There’s not much that is as easy to do that will offer that level of performance. Other options would be the 6.5 SAUM or 6.5 PRC. Both of those should be able to achieve your goals with RL26.

Having said that, if you’re really into the 6.5-06 AI, then there’s a few things to consider. I would start out with a set of dies and size your brass down the way you described. You’ll need to measure your neck diameter with a bullet seated. If you don’t want to neck turn then you’ll need to order a custom reamer to fit your neck diameter and the freebore you want. This can be done. As far as Redding making you custom dies, it would be best to call and ask them.
 

L.Sherm

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Don't go the unturned route on a 6.5x06AI i can tell you from experience it won't be as accurate as say a .296 chamber neck been there done that on a 6.5x300wsm.
Unturned you will be about .296-.297 loaded round with in my opinion is way to hard to control neck tension on brass.
Its why just about all 6.5 stuff runs a .292 or smaller loaded round.
I put together a 6.5x06AI for my nephew running 06 Lapua brass and its one of the most accurate hunting rifles I've been around. 140 Berger at 3150 in a 26" with H1000 he loves it.
The reamer is set up for an O.A.L of 3.43 with the boatail bearing surface at the neck shoulder junction.
If you go this route p.m. me we could probably work something out on my reamer and I can neck down the brass with my forming dies.
 

nksmfamjp

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Don't go the unturned route on a 6.5x06AI i can tell you from experience it won't be as accurate as say a .296 chamber neck been there done that on a 6.5x300wsm.
Unturned you will be about .296-.297 loaded round with in my opinion is way to hard to control neck tension on brass.
Its why just about all 6.5 stuff runs a .292 or smaller loaded round.
I put together a 6.5x06AI for my nephew running 06 Lapua brass and its one of the most accurate hunting rifles I've been around. 140 Berger at 3150 in a 26" with H1000 he loves it.
The reamer is set up for an O.A.L of 3.43 with the boatail bearing surface at the neck shoulder junction.
If you go this route p.m. me we could probably work something out on my reamer and I can neck down the brass with my forming dies.
Well, that is probably good advice....It seems like normal is 0.013” - 0.015” necks. So, that would be like 0.296” reamer....hmmm. The one I found was 0.299” which could be ok.
 

L.Sherm

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Like I sad trust me on the no turn, .299 would probably work for a no turn on win or rem 25-06 but not on necked down 06 Lapua
 

Hespco

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I have a 6.5x06 I've had for years . Used many 30-06 brass. Have never turned a neck. 24" Bbl, 1/8 twist. Shoots sub 1/2" groups . Also used 25-06 brass. If there is a difference in accuracy I can't tell it. Give it a try first before you invest in a lot of expensive loading tools. You can always buy the extra loading gear later.
 

Ross1147

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For what it’s worth I can not chamber a Lapua 30-06 necked down to 6.5 inside my 6.5-06 AI. I can’t remember the overall thickness at the end but it would not chamber until I turned it.
 

Ross1147

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Here are some measurements. Necked to .284 / .277 / .264. The brass is also .012” longer than my 25-06 that I necked up.
B9985416-F795-4CE8-ACBD-506E6C606057.jpeg
BA82AA23-302D-4350-8CB2-8D98D4E66622.jpeg
 

Ross1147

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Agreed, way to thick. I was bored so I decided to check measurements. I have a box of Lapua sitting around waiting for my Norma brass to die.

Sherm, what do you trim the unformed brass to before fire forming?
 

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