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Ripp
.500 member


Reged: 19/02/07
Posts: 10465
Loc: Montana, USA
6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report
      #310759 - 21/01/18 10:37 AM

http://www.shootingtimes.com/ammo/exclusive-shootout-6mm-creedmoor-vs-the-6-5/


When Hornady introduced the 6.5 Creedmoor about 10 years ago, competitive shooters took note of the fact that it duplicated the velocity of the earlier 6.5×47 Lapua. That cartridge and its 6×47 Lapua offspring had already become favorites among those who strive to squeeze a handful of bullets into the same hole at great distances. Interest in the 6.5×47 Lapua gave the fledgling 6.5 Creedmoor a running start toward success.

The 6.5 Creedmoor is the .30 TC case necked down to 6.5mm (0.264 inch) and the 30-degree shoulder pushed back 0.022 inch. Due to taper in the body of the case, pushing back the shoulder decreases diameter at the body/shoulder juncture by 0.002 inch. Otherwise, the two cases are identical, including a maximum length of 1.920 inches. Neck down the 6.5 Creedmoor case for 0.243-inch bullets and you have the 6mm Creedmoor. It began life several years ago as a wildcat and quickly began to rival its parent in popularity among log-distance competitors. Hornady introduced 6mm Creedmoor factory ammo loaded with match and hunting bullets in early 2017.

The 6.5 Creedmoor has made quite a name for itself in long-range precision shooting, but the newer 6mm Creedmoor is giving it a real run for its money.
The 6.5 Creedmoor has made quite a name for itself in long-range
precision shooting, but the newer 6mm Creedmoor is giving it a real run for its money.



The Lapua cartridges are for handloaders only, but Hornady offers match-grade 6mm and 6.5 Creedmoor ammunition. Federal has 6.5 Creedmoor factory-loaded ammo, including the American Eagle 140-grain Match bullet. Winchester also offers several 6.5 Creedmoor loads, including a 140-grain match load. Nosler’s Match Grade loading has that company’s 140-grain Custom Competition bullet. And HSM has just announced two 6.5 Creedmoor factory loads with 140-grain Berger VLD Hunting and Sierra GameKing bullets.

Ruger was the first manufacturer to offer a factory rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor. Soon after the cartridge was introduced, I used a Hawkeye bolt-action rifle chambered for it to bag a very nice pronghorn antelope. I have mostly written about the 6.5 Creedmoor from a hunter’s perspective, but this time I will don my competitive hat and take a close look at both Creedmoor cartridges in Ruger Precision Rifles. Prior to the introduction of the Precision Rifle, Ruger technicians tested a number of them and came up with an overall average accuracy of around 0.80 inch for five-shot groups at 100 yards with factory ammunition. That gave me an accuracy goal to shoot for—and possibly beat.

I have shot so many different rifles through the decades that it takes something really special to get my attention. As much as I love walnut and blued steel, I appreciate accuracy in any form, and the Precision Rifle has my undivided attention. And while this report is primarily about cartridges and not rifles, I cannot resist mentioning a couple of items.

The fully adjustable Marksman triggers of the test rifles broke crisply at a consistent 35 and 37 ounces, with no trace of creep or overtravel. Close examination of the bores with a Lyman Digital Borecam revealed smooth 5R rifling. Attaching identical Bushnell Elite Tactical DMR II-i scopes with a magnification range of 3.5-21X to the rifles moved their weights close to 15 pounds, which made both quite comfortable to shoot.

The search for the perfect small-caliber, long-distance, accuracy cartridge resulted in the development of light recoiling, far-reachers, including (left to right) 6mm Norma BR, 6x47 Lapua, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5x47 Lapua, and 6.5-284 Norma
The search for the perfect small-caliber, long-distance, accuracy cartridge resulted in the development of light recoiling, far-reachers, including (left to right) 6mm Norma BR, 6×47 Lapua, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5×47 Lapua, and 6.5-284 Norma

Pre-Shoot Challenges

A few challenges had to be met prior to shooting. To remove the bolt of the Precision Rifle, the rifle’s hinged buttstock has to be swung to the side and remain there while the bore is being cleaned. A Gun Vise from MTM held the rifle firmly in position with its stock folded. A cleaning rod guide from Sinclair International kept bore solvent from dripping into the trigger mechanism and prevented unnecessary wear on the rifling at the chamber throat.

The AR-style handguard is fine when shooting prone with a sling or bipod, but it encourages canting when resting on a regular sandbag. There is no problem with canting so long as it remains precisely the same for each shot, but doing so consistently with regular bags is difficult. A Bulls Bag Shooting Rest from Brownells placed atop a Lyman height-adjustable Bag Jack proved to be the perfect solution. The toe of the stock rested firmly on a regular bunny bag.

To make an apples-to-apples comparison of the new 6mm Creedmoor and the 6.5 Creedmoor, Layne used identical Ruger Precision Rifles with Bushnell Elite Tactical DMR II-i 3.5-21X 50mm scopes in Weaver tactical rings.
To make an apples-to-apples comparison of the new 6mm Creedmoor and the 6.5 Creedmoor, Layne used identical Ruger Precision Rifles with Bushnell Elite Tactical DMR II-i 3.5-21X 50mm scopes in Weaver tactical rings.

Back to the two Creedmoor cartridges. SAAMI maximum overall length is 2.800 inches. Some factory ammunition exceeded that, but the Ruger magazine with an interior length of 2.840 inches was plenty roomy. When loading the rifle single- shot, as was done with some of my longer handloads, cartridge overall length can exceed magazine length, but if the magazine is to be used, 2.830 inches is about maximum for trouble-free feeding.

Seating bullets out to long overall cartridge lengths in factory ammo and in handloads leaves plenty of space inside cases for powder, and chamber throats in the Ruger rifles in both calibers are long enough to accommodate them. When checked with a Hornady Overall Length Gauge, the dimension from case head to the point on the ogive of a bullet that contacts the rifling was 2.160 inches for the rifle in 6mm Creedmoor and 2.225 inches for the 6.5 Creedmoor. The amount of bullet freetravel prior to rifling engagement for various factory loads and handloads is shown in the accompanying accuracy chart.

Screen Shot 2017-09-19 at 4.25.38 PM

Preparing handloads for the two rifles, I used Hornady, Nosler, Starline, and Lapua cases. As this is written, only Hornady offers 6mm Creedmoor cases, so a Redding Series C die was used for necking down the others. The 6.5×47 Lapua case uses a Small Rifle primer, and it has a 1.5mm (0.059 inch) flash hole compared to the SAAMI minimum/ maximum of 0.074 to 0.078 inch for cases of American manufacture. It and its 6×47 offspring have been widely accepted by competitive shooters, so when Lapua began making the 6.5 Creedmoor case, it was given the same primer pocket and flash-hole diameters. Hornady and Nosler cases use Large Rifle primers and have flash holes of SAAMI-specified size. Starline offers cases pocketed for both primer sizes, and the cases have flash holes of standard size. The 0.058-inch decapping pins of Redding resizing dies work perfectly with both flash-hole diameters. The more standard 0.070-inch pin in other dies will have to be switched out before they are used to decap Lapua cases.

The same procedure was followed as I would if preparing for a match. When a cartridge is chambered, variation in case neck wall thickness (wall thicker on one side than the other) introduces misalignment between the axis of the bullet and the axes of the case and bore. A Hornady Neck Wall Thickness Gauge revealed as much as 0.007-inch variation in the four brands of cases. An electric screwdriver-powered Hornady Neck Turn Tool with its blade adjusted to shave brass only from the thick side of a case neck took care of that. Cases were then run through Redding Type S bushing-style neck-sizing dies with bushings 0.002 smaller than the neck diameter of a loaded round. When fired case fit became a bit too tight for easy bolt closure, a Redding body die was used to bump back shoulders. Bullets were seated with Redding Competition dies.

Prior to shooting, Layne cleaned the rifles, using an MTM Rifle Vise and a cleaning rod guide from Sinclair International. He used Redding dies; Hornady tools; Federal primers; and Hodgdon, Winchester, VihtaVuori, and Alliant powders to prepare handloads.
Prior to shooting, Layne cleaned the rifles, using an MTM Rifle Vise and a cleaning rod guide from Sinclair International. He used Redding dies; Hornady tools; Federal primers; and Hodgdon, Winchester, VihtaVuori, and Alliant powders to prepare handloads.

If perfectly concentric factory ammunition could be mass produced, few shooters could afford to buy it. My solution was to run each round of 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor through the Hornady Concentricity Tool and mark the high side of the neck with a magic marker. As each round was placed into the magazine or manually chambered, its mark was oriented to the 12 o’clock position.

With the exception of the Sierra 110-grain MatchKing, overall lengths of 6mm Creedmoor handloads were compatible with the magazine. Due to the longer chamber throat of the rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor, several handloads exceeded magazine length. Best accuracy with the Sierra 130-grain Tipped MatchKing in the 6.5 Creedmoor was at a cartridge overall length of 2.840 inches, which put bullet noses against the front of the magazine. No feeding issues were experienced, but in a match shooting cartridges that rub against the front of the magazine would make me very uneasy. For best accuracy in the test rifle, cartridges loaded with the Nosler 140-grain RDF and Hornady 147-grain ELD Match were also too long for the magazine.

Chart-1-Screen-Shot-2017-09-13-at-3.25.36-PMAccuracy Results

During accuracy testing, I went with five shots per group. The barrel was completely cooled down between each four-group string by running water through the bore followed by four dry patches. I usually shoot one fouling shot prior to shooting the next group, and while that worked with the 6mm rifle, the 6.5mm required two fouling shots before settling down. Squeeze too much shooting into a single range session and group size becomes affected by shooter fatigue, so each session was limited to four hours.

Never in a thousand years will it happen again, but aggregate handload accuracy of the two rifles ended up exactly the same at 0.57 inch. Equally interesting is the fact that both rifles averaged less than half-MOA with five of the 12 handloads tried in each. Pure luck? Perhaps, but it might also serve as proof that Ruger has discovered a way to mass-produce consistency.

Because the 6.5 Creedmoor burns a smaller powder charge, match-level barrel accuracy life will be longer than with the larger 6.5-284 Norma. Recoil is also a bit lighter. And yet, as illustrated in the exterior ballistics comparison chart on page 30, when both cartridges are loaded to maximum velocities with the same bullet, there is not a great deal of difference in wind drift.

During Layne’s comparison of the two cartridges, factory ammo was prepared in the same way it would be prior to using it in a match. Each round was placed in a Hornady Concentricity Tool, and a Sharpie pen was used to mark the thick side of the case neck wall. When placing rounds into the magazine, or when manually loading them directly into the chamber, the mark was oriented to the 12 o’clock position.
During Layne’s comparison of the two cartridges, factory ammo was prepared in the same way it would be prior to using it in a match. Each round was placed in a Hornady Concentricity Tool, and a Sharpie pen was used to mark the thick side of the case neck wall. When placing rounds into the magazine, or when manually loading them directly into the chamber, the mark was oriented to the 12 o’clock position.

Reducing the neck diameter of a case decreases expansion ratio, and while barrel accuracy life with the 6mm Creedmoor will be less than for the 6.5 Creedmoor, I doubt if the difference is enough to be of concern to most competitors. On paper, the 6.5 Creedmoor slightly edges out its offspring at 500 and 1,000 yards, but a good shooter who knows how to read wind and mirage can dominate matches with either.

So which of the two cartridges is best? In long-range competition, shooter ability is far more important than slight differences in the performance of various cartridges. But even the best shooters are better able to take home gold when shooting cartridges that are easy on the shoulder. While both cartridges fit that description, the slightly lighter recoil of the 6mm Creedmoor places it a bit ahead in that department.

Those who might scoff at the idea of a mild-mannered 6mm cartridge becoming king of the hill in long-range competition should consider this: As this is written, a 2.6872-inch 10-shot group fired by Jim Richards is the smallest fired at 1,000 yards. His rifle was chambered for the little 6mm Dasher. It and the 6mm Creedmoor push long, high-BC bullets at about the same velocity, so they should be equally capable of winning matches.

--------------------
ALL MEN DIE, BUT FEW MEN TRULY LIVE..


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Ripp
.500 member


Reged: 19/02/07
Posts: 10465
Loc: Montana, USA
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Ripp]
      #320298 - 03/10/18 01:06 AM

Another rifle offered in 6 Creemoor

https://www.americanrifleman.org/article...m_campaign=1018

--------------------
ALL MEN DIE, BUT FEW MEN TRULY LIVE..


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Daryl_S
.577 member


Reged: 10/08/05
Posts: 18268
Loc: Beautiful British Columbia, Ca...
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Ripp]
      #320300 - 03/10/18 01:17 AM

One of the latest Handloader magazines has an article on the 6mm Creedmoor.
Cases should be able to be made from .22-250 brass if you have some good consistent neck wall brass. This brass will be more accurate than needed for hunting at any range suitable.

--------------------
Daryl


"a rifle without hammers, is like a Spaniel without ears" Edward VII


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Wayne59
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Reged: 20/06/15
Posts: 930
Loc: Lagrange Ga. USA
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Daryl_S]
      #320326 - 03/10/18 12:16 PM

I have had such poor luck with a Savage that I wouldn't look twice at one.

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Ripp
.500 member


Reged: 19/02/07
Posts: 10465
Loc: Montana, USA
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Daryl_S]
      #320343 - 03/10/18 11:16 PM

Quote:

One of the latest Handloader magazines has an article on the 6mm Creedmoor.
Cases should be able to be made from .22-250 brass if you have some good consistent neck wall brass. This brass will be more accurate than needed for hunting at any range suitable.




You can readily purchase 6mm Creedmoor brass now for reloading.. or shoot the factory stuff and use that...

I picked up a Ruger in 6m Creedmoor last summer..have only shot it a few times..nice little gun..would make a nice little truck gun for shooing most things you might need to while traveling about in the ranch..

--------------------
ALL MEN DIE, BUT FEW MEN TRULY LIVE..


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Ripp
.500 member


Reged: 19/02/07
Posts: 10465
Loc: Montana, USA
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Wayne59]
      #320344 - 03/10/18 11:22 PM

Quote:

I have had such poor luck with a Savage that I wouldn't look twice at one.





I used to think, especially as a kid, that Savage was not a very good weapon..back in the late 60's and 70's they were considered a low grade rifle..I don't think that anymore, especially after shooting some of my friends Savage rifles. The ones I have shot were incredibly accurate.. in fact two years ago I pickup up a unique model of theirs with a twisted looking barrel, laminated stock in .22 Mag. rimfire...shoots way better than my Ruger model I have...

Have another fried who has a plain model in 223...factory ammo, shoots 1/2 in groups..

EVERY manufacturer makes a lemon once in a while..I had a Swarovski scope die on me in the first 30 rounds on a 26 Nosler last year..have had the same thing with Zeiss and pretty much any other manufacturer you can name..but I still buy them all...

Personally, for the money, I feel they are an incredible buy...many of their models are still very inexpensive..but accurate as well..was not always the case..

Ripp

--------------------
ALL MEN DIE, BUT FEW MEN TRULY LIVE..


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Daryl_S
.577 member


Reged: 10/08/05
Posts: 18268
Loc: Beautiful British Columbia, Ca...
Re: 6 Creedmoor vs 6.5 Creedmoor...ST report [Re: Ripp]
      #320349 - 04/10/18 02:23 AM

Savage and CZ both share the enviable reputation of being the most accurate, out-of-the-box rifles in varmint calibres - at least.
Few years back, I bought a cheap Savage Axis in .25/06. It had a horrid trigger, non-adjustable, of course.
It shot everything from 85gr. Hornady's to 117gr. Partitions into .450" to .750" for 3-shot groups at 100 meters. I did not fire 5 shot groups due to the light-weight bullet.
Since the rifle did this literally with every load I tried, it proved it's accuracy to me.
I know of a number of guys on a small bore forum I frequent who are shooting bug-hole groups at 100yards with their factory .204Rugers & .17 HH's in CZ and .204 Ruger chambering in Savage varminters. these guys love their rifle's.

--------------------
Daryl


"a rifle without hammers, is like a Spaniel without ears" Edward VII


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