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usneagle81
12-27-2004, 05:09 PM
I am looking to build myself a new rifle in a 6.5mm caliber. I have done a lot of reading on the different cartridges availble. I think I am going to go with the 6.5x55 Swede though I have been impressed with the little bit of info I have read about the Ackley Improved version. I plan on reloading for myself and will use the rifle mostly in relativley short ranges. I already have a hefty 300 WSM and am looking for a lighter more enjoyable rifle for deer and the such.

Since the 6.5x55 is already a rather rare cartridge is there any benifits to going to even rarer cartridges like the 6.5x55 AI or the 6.5-06 which have better paper ballistics?

Thanks:

USNEagle

LLANOJOHN
12-27-2004, 05:46 PM
USNEagle,

First, allow me to welcome you to The Hunter's Life Forums! Since your question concerns the absolutely wonderous 6.5 caliber of which I am a leading proponent, I feel oblidged to offer you my views on the particular cartridges you mentioned!

Before I expound I must ask you what action do you intend to build on? Next question is approximately how many rounds do you intend to send down the barrel a year? Here is a pic' of some of my favorite 6.5 cartridges.

From left to right they are:

6.5x55 Swede.....6.5x55 BJAI.....6.5 Remington BR.....6.5x08 Ackley....260 Remington....

drinksgin (deceased)
12-27-2004, 08:48 PM
6.5x55 is available from several companies, .260 Rem only from Remington, while the 6.5-08 is not a factory load,at least as far as I know, there is a neverending supply of the basic case and it can be loaded up hot or medium or mild as you chose, as you said you intended to reload.
All should work in the shorter actions.
JMO, Don

usneagle81
12-27-2004, 10:48 PM
I am thinking about using a Montana Rifleman barreled action. I doubt I will put all that many rounds through it in a year. At least not in the near future. Right now I am living on a Navy base and cannot have any firearms with me so it will stay at my parents house until I move off base. I have a 300 WSM and am looking for a more pleasent rifle to shoot, so concieveable when I get the chance I would like it to be pleasnt enough to shoot for an extened session and frankly want to expand my rifle collection.

Thanks:

USNEagle81

LLANOJOHN
12-27-2004, 11:58 PM
USNEagle,


The long action would be ideal for the 6.5-06 or the 6.5-06 AI and the short action would be best for the 260 Rem or the 6.5-08 AI. For bullet weights 85-120gr would be pretty much the same..........however for the 140's top velocity would be with the 6.5-06's.

For deer and the ranges you specified the 260 would do the "necessaries". Oh yeah, and a lot less cost for dies, etc.!

For the 6.5x55 choice, I would go with either the CZ550 American or the Ruger 77 MK II. The MK II is the "less weight" of the 2. I have both in the gun cabinet and its always "flip a coin"!

Ol' John...http://www.thehunterslife.com/forums/images/smilies/wink.gif http://www.thehunterslife.com/forums/images/smilies/biggrin.gif

roadkill
12-28-2004, 11:56 AM
Has anyone considered the 6.5 Grendel?? It is made in an upper for and AR? It's ballistics are wonderful with groups of under 1" at 1000 yds.!! I think I might be saving my pennies for it :-)

RumRunner
12-28-2004, 12:35 PM
Has anyone considered the 6.5 Grendel?? It is made in an upper for and AR? It's ballistics are wonderful with groups of under 1" at 1000 yds.!! I think I might be saving my pennies for it :-)
Roadkill...Is the.... "groups of under 1" at 1000 yds.!! ".... a typeo, or is that what you meant to say?
Can't say I've ever heard of the 6.5 Grendel, but with performance like that, we will all be hearing about it soon enough, I suppose.

Gmoney
12-28-2004, 12:46 PM
Savage also offers .260 as well as Remington....

usneagle81
12-28-2004, 03:59 PM
I think I have decided on the 6.5x55 BJAI however, I have to find a reamer for it. Montana Rifleman only has the Swede. Elk Ridge has a reamer listed as a 6.5x55 Ack Imp. Is this going to be the same as the 6.5x55 Bob Jourdan Ackley Improved or are there two AIs? Pacifc Tools has a reamer that I can buy that they say is the BJAI, but I don't really need to buy one if I don't have to.


Thanks:

USNEagle81

.................................................. .................................................. .............................

The original reamer made for Bob Jourdan was done by Dave Manson. He has his own reamer business now and he made the reamer I have. Try this for info--

.... www.mansonreamers.com (http://www.mansonreamers.com/) ...

Ol' John

LLANOJOHN
12-28-2004, 08:56 PM
Has anyone considered the 6.5 Grendel?? It is made in an upper for and AR? It's ballistics are wonderful with groups of under 1" at 1000 yds.!! I think I might be saving my pennies for it :-)I did some research on the 6.5 Grendel and considered it for my Mini-Mauser.. It is a proprietory cartridge with Alexander Arms of Virginia and doing some work with Lothar Walther barrels as I understand it. Since its a proprietory cartridge I cannot legally obtain a reamer and cannot chamber any rifles for it. The folks at Alexander Arms and Lothar Walther have their reasons and more power to them. The decision I made to go with the 6.5 Rem BR will do what I felt was required for what I desired.

I am sure what you meant was 1 MOA at 1000 yards not 1" at 1000 yards, correct me if I am wrong............:)

Ol' John..:D

FLABOY
01-17-2005, 08:52 PM
I am trying to stay on the light side for Florida and Georgia deer. Would a 6.5BR work for deer in these areas. Seldom shoot over 200 yards

Pete

LLANOJOHN
01-17-2005, 11:26 PM
FLABOY,

Glad to have you with us, neighbor! Hope you drop in often and post when it suits your fancy.

I don't know what your situation is so I am going to answer as if you are a non-reloader. The 6.5BR is strickly a reloading proposition and its going to be expensive getting set up for this one. There is commercial ammo available for both the .260 Rem and the 6.5x55 Swede. Either one will do the job for Florida & Georgia deer.

Remington & Savage both make rifles in the .260 if thats what you decide to go with. Ruger and CZ make rifles for the 6.5x55...Ruger is easy to find but the CZ is a bit more difficult. I really love my CZ and consider it the best buy on the market today......however....the Ruger has always been the best fitting commercial firearm for me out there.....Fits me like a glove....I guess thats why I own both. Decisions, decisions...but as my esteemed collegue, Jay Edward, here at 'The Hunter's Life' has been known to say.............." my pocket book governs all! "

Find the biggest gun store around and go price and throw them to your shoulder..You have about 5 months before you need to make a final decision..Let us know what you decide and keep shootin'!!

Ol' John

CAfrica
01-18-2005, 08:30 AM
HondoJohn,

Give us some detail on that Grendel. On what case is it based?

C

LLANOJOHN
01-18-2005, 09:09 AM
C,

It is based on the PPC case. For more info go to www.65grendel.com (http://www.65grendel.com)

Ol' John

gitano
01-18-2005, 11:30 AM
That Grendel is an interesting cartridge.

Paul

gitano
01-18-2005, 04:21 PM
John, do you have ballistic comparason data betwee the 6.5BR and the Grendle? Also, I visited that site, and to the best of my ability to determine, the Grendel reamers are available from Pacific. Have a look at this thread.

http://www.65grendel.com/forum/showthread.php?t=32

Paul

LLANOJOHN
01-18-2005, 05:31 PM
Paul,

Thanks for the update. When I was first investigating this cartridge this information was not available. I will have to spend a little time with 'Load from a Disc'. The only thing I was interested at the time was the 100gr bullet and that was as far as I went for ballistic info.

Its nice that they decided to share................:rolleyes:

Ol' John...;)

FLABOY
01-19-2005, 07:17 PM
I just converted my 300WSM to 6.5WSM. Great accuracy, good recoil, although I would not consider it for anything longer than 500 Yd.(target that is, not animals)Pete

Mike Orwan
01-20-2005, 09:00 AM
Since I didn't see anyone mention it I'll step up.

6.5/284 is an excellent choice. Same ballistics as the 6.5-06 but with no brass forming trouble. Hornady, Lapua, Norma all make brass. I know Black Hills loads match ammo in this caliber but I don't know if they do hunting ammo.
My own 6.5/284 is on a M70 action with a 26" Lilja bbl and it smokes white tails with a 120 gr Ballistic Tip at well over 3k fps. It holds 3+1 in the magazine and only requires a small mod to the mag box to feed reliably 100% of the time. Converting an M70 or Rem 700 long action to feed is simple.
It's very flat shooting and is the most popular caliber for conventional prone long range shooting at 1000 yards.

LLANOJOHN
01-20-2005, 02:37 PM
John, do you have ballistic comparason data betwee the 6.5BR and the Grendle? Also, I visited that site, and to the best of my ability to determine, the Grendel reamers are available from Pacific. Have a look at this thread.

http://www.65grendel.com/forum/showthread.php?t=32

Paul
Paul,

According to LFAD with my planned 21.75" barrel at reasonable pressures (49,000-51000cup)
with 90 to 100gr bullets.....2850fps to 3000fps. This would be just slightly higher than what they are getting with the Grendel. No big deal as far as I am concerned. The 6.5 BR has a slight case capacity advantage........Either one would suffice for the perameters I have set.
Remember, I am building this rifle for the kids coming up as their first centerfire rifle to hunt deer with. Low recoil, sufficient KP and accuracy and lite weight!

Ol' John

LLANOJOHN
01-20-2005, 02:43 PM
I just converted my 300WSM to 6.5WSM. Great accuracy, good recoil, although I would not consider it for anything longer than 500 Yd.(target that is, not animals)Pete
FLABOY,

If you can get 2850-2900fps at muzzle with Sierra 142 MK's, you will be good to 1,000yd shooting targets if you so desire. That particular bullet goes sub-sonic at about 1200yards if memory serves me correctly.

Ol' John..:cool: :D

gitano
01-21-2005, 02:43 PM
John,

Hmm.. I thought those guys at the Grendel site were saying the Grendel performed "better" than the BR. Of course the differences are genuinely insignificant... just interesting.

Also, the cartridge you sent me is headstamped "6mm BR". I thought you were building a 6.5mm BR. (I think this is why I keep getting confused about what you're up to. :) ) I didn't mic that bullet, is it a 6.5 in a 6mm case?

That 6.5, either in Grendel or BR sure looks interesting. (I'm so easy it hurts some times.) I think I'd be looking at the 7.62x39 necked down to 6.5 though. That brass is really easy to come by, and I don't care much about headstamps. Of course that would certainly call for a very short bolt action or a single shot. A 6.5x39 would be nice on a No.1. :)

Paul

LLANOJOHN
01-21-2005, 04:08 PM
John,

Hmm.. I thought those guys at the Grendel site were saying the Grendel performed "better" than the BR. Of course the differences are genuinely insignificant... just interesting.

From what I was able to discern from a few responders, the 6.5 Grendel is "better in the accuracy" department. Meaning grouping in the .2's & 3's as compared to the 6.5 Br in the .4's & .5's! Velocities being pretty much the same, the edge to the 6.5 BR

Also, the cartridge you sent me is headstamped "6mm BR". I thought you were building a 6.5mm BR. (I think this is why I keep getting confused about what you're up to. :) ) I didn't mic that bullet, is it a 6.5 in a 6mm case?

Yes, the 6mm BR was the only case I could find at a reasonable cost from Midway.

That 6.5, either in Grendel or BR sure looks interesting. (I'm so easy it hurts some times.) I think I'd be looking at the 7.62x39 necked down to 6.5 though. That brass is really easy to come by, and I don't care much about headstamps. Of course that would certainly call for a very short bolt action or a single shot. A 6.5x39 would be nice on a No.1. :)

So far I have seen references to the Sako short action, the CZ 527 and the Mini-Mauser. With the rimless case its going to be difficult to find a SShot without doing expensive modifications to get it to function properly. But I am certainly no expert on SShot actions!

Paul
Ol' John...:D ;)

oldelkhunter
01-23-2005, 12:27 AM
Have you considered the 6.5x284 using Lapua brass? I would suggest using a long action to
allow proper seating of 140 grain and heavier bullets. Dies are readily available, great brass is
made by Lapua, and you could use 284 Winchester brass also. It is about the same as a 6.5x06AI.
Another question is do you reload and if you do, do you have much experience? You can get
plenty of help on this site if not. I don't know why the 260 Remington lost favor. It does what
the 6.5x55 Swede does and you can make brass from 243, 7-08, and 308. There is nothing
wrong with the Swede, I just prefer stubbier rounds.

I have seen the results of 6.5 bullets bringing down elk. They work fine. I'm loosing interest in
high recoil rifles and looking to more efficient/effective rounds. I will say that if I have to STOP
an animal, my 458 Win Mag with Hornady hollow points is impressive.

Let us know your choice and how it works out.

Old Elk Hunter...... US NAVY, Vietnam era, CVA 43, USS Coral Sea

gitano
01-23-2005, 01:14 AM
There is nothing
wrong with the Swede, I just prefer stubbier rounds.



Hear! Hear!

Paul

FLABOY
02-13-2005, 09:18 PM
Unfortunately the only range close by only covers 500 yd. I would love to be able to try longer distances.

pete

LLANOJOHN
02-13-2005, 11:30 PM
Hear! Hear!

PaulYes, IMHO, there is much to be said for the stubbier cartrides.......but!!!!!!

I still believe in a cartridge that has a "reasonable neck length"....which is why I prefer the Swede cartridge, be it factory or the BJAI version. The .260 (6.5/08) cartridge is one that I am absolutely in love(ok..you can't love something inanimate) with. But it has its limitations!
It is one of those cartridges that you have to decide which way you want to go.....big game or varmint........that short neck does not lend itself well to an all-around cartridge(yes there are exceptions to the rule).........I much prefer the 6.5 Swede or the AI version as a varmint/big game cartridge and that is simply because of the neck length. More on this later in a different threat in progress!

Just my thoughts on the subject........for what its worth!

Ol' John,,:cool: :D ;)

gitano
02-14-2005, 11:15 AM
Well now John, that's a well-reasoned response. I'm not sure I agree with you entirely, but I can see your logic. The place we depart is in your position that because of the short neck, one has to make a choice in chamber specs between "big game" and "varmint" applications. I'm assuming, based on our conversations, that you are taking that position because you feel that varmint bullets will be light-for-caliber, (hereafter LFC), and big game bullets will be heavy-for-caliber (HFC). While I certainly wouldn't argue with the choice for varmints being LFC I don't subscribe to the idea that big game bullets need to be HFC.

These choices, LFC or HFC, in a short-necked cartridge, mean that if the chamber has a "medium-length" throat, the HFC bullets will have to be seated with the base protruding below the neck into the the powder space. Conversely, with the LFCs, you won't be able to seat the bullets out far enough to get close enough to the lands for best accuracy. There are specific reasons why I don't consider either of these situations necessarily resulting in a "compromise" in performance.

1) LFC bullets are "best" for varmints. While one might question the application of LFC bullets for big game, there is no terminal performance reason not to use HFC bullets on varmints. In fact, I am always surprised to hear "varmint" shooters ridicule heavy bullets when the benchrest guys, shooting at ranges 600 yds and beyond, choose heavy bullets for their supposed better accuracy. Small target, long distance, sounds like a heavy "accurate" bullet is called for - at least to me. I suppose someone will mention the potential for ricochet with the heavier bullets. Personally I find that excuse specious.

2) HFC bullets are "best" for big game. At the other end of the game spectrum, neither do I subscribe to the necessity for HFC bullets for big game. It is very important in any discussion of terminal performance based on bullet weight, to remain within a caliber. So the question becomes, "Does a bullet somehow have "better" terminal peformance just because it's heavier?" As many well know, I don't particularly think so. As I have said in the past, and posted graphs in support of the postition, there is a weight "sweet-spot" for every cartridge. That "sweet-spot" is defined as that weight that delivers the greatest kinetic energy to the animal over the ranges one expects to shoot the animal of interest. Within a caliber, delivered energy determines the terminal performance. Heavy bullets may penetrate through-and-through, but that does not automatically mean they cause more damage leading to quicker death.

3) Bullets that protrude below the neck limit powder capacity. Very, very few cartridges are loaded to 100% of case capacity. 100% load density is not exactly rare, but it is uncommmon, especially in HFC bullets. Therefore, there is at least a little of the powder chamber into which the bullet can protrude without 'losing' potential case capacity. (This argument does NOT apply to black powder cartridges that usually have 100%+ charge densities regardless of bullet weight.) Furthermore, there's nothing wrong with compressed charges. Almost everyone I know "worries" about compressed charges, when in fact, the ammunition manufacturers employ that technique (and other compaction techniques) for all of the "light magnum" loadings. So, even if you do demand HFC bullets for big game, there's still a little 'wiggle room' to seat that pencil at just the "right" distance from the lands.

So, I think in spite of the fact that the 260 does indeed have a relatively 'short" neck, it should not be relegated to the "specialty" cartridge category. Still, when I was considering chambering a rifle for the 260, you succeeded in changing my mind, pointing out that the performance difference between the 6.5x51mm (AKA .260 Rem or 6.5-08) and the 6.5x55 Swede is insignificant, therefore there's little to gain with a case that's 4mm shorter. But I remain looking at the 260 out of the corner of my eye. It's a weakness I have. ;)

Paul

LLANOJOHN
02-14-2005, 12:18 PM
Paul,

We are really on the same page, my friend. I too, really like LFC bullets for most everything. If I were constructing a .260 for general use FOR ME, I would choose a barrel with a twist rate of perhaps 1 in 10" and select a reamer with a throat designed for the 120 grain Nosler BT. I could then use the Nosler Partition 125grainer with no problems as far as stabilization. With this set-up I could still use the varmint(?) weight bullets of 85 to 100grs.
I am still of the firm opinion that the Sierra 100gr HP is not only a varmint bullets but a hunting bullet for larger game. It was THE BULLET OF CHOICE when I was still shooting my 6.5-06 and I see no reason not to consider it for larger game such as mule deer and caribou if I were ever to get the chance to hunt those animals.

Your choice of the 110 HP in the 7mm bore as a proven game getter for the larger animals reinforces my choice for the 100gr 6.5 bullets. You and I are definitely in agreement as to bullet performance, ie complete bullet expansion inside and staying inside the game animal. Yes, this attitude requires us to place our shots and avoid the raking shot placement and follow up on the blood trail. For those that prefer that style of shooting the HFC bullets I am sure would be their preference and thats OK by me.

I have had the miserable experience of field dressing game that had perforated entrails (gut-shot), 1 was by me and the other by a hunting companion. That was over 25 years ago and is deeply etched in my memory cells of something I don't wish to do again.

I am still of the opinion you are in need of a classic '98 Mauser fitted with a good barrel and chambered for the 6.5x55 BJAI. When I finally get mine built I will send to you for a good work-out in the Caribou herds. I am certain you will become a believer in the "almost perfect 6.5 bore"!

Ol' John...:D :D :D ;)

gitano
02-14-2005, 12:32 PM
We are really on the same page, my friend. No doubt about it.

Paul

FLABOY
02-15-2005, 06:54 PM
I bow to the wisdom of you gentlemen. I'll never learn all that in the short time I have left.:) I only am learning the basics. I was just on the web trying to find a site where a guy says he can get 3,400 out of a 260 with "safe" pressures. Keep up the good replies because I love to read and learn.

Pete

Widlcat
01-04-2006, 08:59 AM
My favorite 6.5 is the 6.5 Remington Mag. They're not made by any manufacturer now, and haven't been for years. The only way to get one is to have it custom made.
I've owned two of them, one, a Ruger M77, about 30 years ago and a Remington that's still in my gun case.
It's a short case, shorter than the 264 Win Mag, with less recoil, I've always liked the cartridge ... just a thought.

billyhornsby
01-05-2006, 10:27 PM
I have a Steyr in 6.5x55 Swede and it is a champion. Very well engineered and accurate. It is the Pro Hunter model. I would go with Steyr or Tikka. CZ may also be good. Billy