6.5CM vs .308Win

4IDARCHER

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So I know this discussion has been beaten to death but I there is an aspect to it that I haven't heard many people speak about (none actually) I know with the onset of all the newer 6.5 and specifically the 6.5CM everyone has been talking about how they can compete nicely and the beat ballistics of the .308Win as the distances get longer, especially out past 400 yrds. This is great for shooting targets and rocks but doesn't the frontal diameter and overall mass of the .308 bullets create a much larger and devastating wound channel at nearly all ranges?

I do understand ballistics and have quite a bit of experience shooting at distance with the .308, but not in a hunting situation. What I don't seem to understand is that there seems to be a difference between just the ballistics of hitting at a set distance and the ability to kill quickly at that same range.

Between these two different calibers wouldn't the increased energy (regardless of how you measure that energy K.E., Momentum, Taylor knock out) and larger diameter of the .308Win be a better choice for 90% of the shots you will encounter in the field than the better dope and drop of the 6.5 on the 1-5% of the shots in the field?
 

hodgeman

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Over "normal" hunting ranges- I don't think there's a nickel's worth of difference between .25 and .30 cals. I've shot a lot of game with the .308, .30-60, .300WSM, 7-08, .270...and just recently got a 6.5 that I haven't used yet but will this fall. I've seen game shot with .25-06, .257WBY, 7 Mag and a bunch more I can't even remember. If the animal was well hit, it died...regardless of frontal area, K.E., M.V. or anything else.

Good bullets in the vitals kill nearly uniformly despite what a calculator or marketing firm hype tells you.

The 6.5 is not so very different ballistically than the 6.5x55 Swedish and folks have been knocking critters in the dirt with that for well over a century.

IMHO, most of the marketing tripe and .308v.6.5CM chatter is just noise as the differences over the ranges most people shoot ( and within the ability of most shooters) are just too slight to matter in the larger scheme. Sticking a quality bullet in the boiler room is what counts....headstamp be damned.
 

micus

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Like everyone else has said, an animal well hit with a quality bullet is not long for the world regardless of caliber.

I would add to this, having shot lots of 6.5CM and a variety of other .30 cals is that the wind drift is wayyyy less of a factor with the 6.5 making the "well hit" component a lot easier to accomplish.

Under normal hunting conditions 75-200yds ( where I seem to shoot everything ) it wouldn't matter. 400+ taking some effort out of wind calling is a nice variable to mitigate.

Mike.
 

GKPrice

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Like everyone else has said, an animal well hit with a quality bullet is not long for the world regardless of caliber.

I would add to this, having shot lots of 6.5CM and a variety of other .30 cals is that the wind drift is wayyyy less of a factor with the 6.5 making the "well hit" component a lot easier to accomplish.

Under normal hunting conditions 75-200yds ( where I seem to shoot everything ) it wouldn't matter. 400+ taking some effort out of wind calling is a nice variable to mitigate.

Mike.

Well said .... also a factor is recoil - Although to most of us a .308's recoil isn't difficult to handle, some are bothered and the step down to the CM might be just enough less to warrant better shooting, in this case the 6.5 CM wins out - We also have today, a much better selection of stellar bullets to kill game with and a lot of us haven't realized just how much that matters - Years back when all I shot elk with was 7mm 150 ballistic tips (due to my personal preference for a certain fast 7mm wildcat), my kill results were all over the chart - I then changed to 338 Win Mag plus the Accubond came along, MY world changed drastically and I never really put much thought into how many factors had changed nearly simultaneously (didn't really matter that much, 338's kill stuff) Now that recoil has begun to bother me I've decided the 6.5 CM deserved another mindset and I'm liking what I feel at the bench too - I still think a 243 a bit light for elk but 6mm just isn't much smaller - Size still matters but not as much as it used to
 

hodgeman

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We also have today, a much better selection of stellar bullets to kill game with and a lot of us haven't realized just how much that matters - Size still matters but not as much as it used to

I completely agree- new bullets over the last twenty years have (more or less) re-written the play book for cartridge selection and cheap (and effective) rangefinders and drop compensators have re-written the rules on how far makes sense. I'm amazed at this point how many things I'm having to unlearn and how many old prejudices (not matter how well justified in 1985) just no longer apply. Still don't think abusing game by using an inadequate cartridge or shooting out past Ft. Mudge is a great idea, but what is acceptable is quite a bit different than back in the day I learned how the first time.

My pet .300WSM is likely the last "magnum" cartridge I'll ever own. In the recent past, the .30cal was the smallest bore I ever considered... it's now the largest in my rack.
 

GKPrice

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I completely agree- new bullets over the last twenty years have (more or less) re-written the play book for cartridge selection and cheap (and effective) rangefinders and drop compensators have re-written the rules on how far makes sense. I'm amazed at this point how many things I'm having to unlearn and how many old prejudices (not matter how well justified in 1985) just no longer apply. Still don't think abusing game by using an inadequate cartridge or shooting out past Ft. Mudge is a great idea, but what is acceptable is quite a bit different than back in the day I learned how the first time.

My pet .300WSM is likely the last "magnum" cartridge I'll ever own. In the recent past, the .30cal was the smallest bore I ever considered... it's now the largest in my rack.

Me too !
 
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I completely agree- new bullets over the last twenty years have (more or less) re-written the play book for cartridge selection and cheap (and effective) rangefinders and drop compensators have re-written the rules on how far makes sense. I'm amazed at this point how many things I'm having to unlearn and how many old prejudices (not matter how well justified in 1985) just no longer apply. Still don't think abusing game by using an inadequate cartridge or shooting out past Ft. Mudge is a great idea, but what is acceptable is quite a bit different than back in the day I learned how the first time.

My pet .300WSM is likely the last "magnum" cartridge I'll ever own. In the recent past, the .30cal was the smallest bore I ever considered... it's now the largest in my rack.

This. I hunt with a 375 because I like it.....not because I need it. I bought a 6.5 cm that I haven't even shot yet. I bought it as a base for a project. However, I'm really thinking hard about rebarreling
It to 308. 308 is a fraction of the price to shoot. Hard to get good with a rifle when you can't afford to practice with it. Another reason is. All the bear i have seen here thus spring have been within 150 yards. I have taken 2 friends out and both of them got theirs within 50 yards. Besides, here long range really isn't the norm.....at all. I'm honestly thinking of going back to handgun hunting only. Lighter, handier and where i am there is no real disadvantage.
 

5MilesBack

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I had a .308 for my daughter and she shot it fine, but then I jumped on a 6.5 CM and she shoots that fine too. But now I'm thinking about ditching the 6.5 altogether and going with the .270. A lot cheaper to reload, and better ballistics.
 

kpk

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Most of the 6.5 bullets have a higher sectional density than the .30s until you get into the really heavy .30s. As far as penetration you'd be splitting hairs trying to figure out which is better for typical hunting distance. Any long distance and I'd take the 6.5s personally.
 

KurtR

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This. I hunt with a 375 because I like it.....not because I need it. I bought a 6.5 cm that I haven't even shot yet. I bought it as a base for a project. However, I'm really thinking hard about rebarreling
It to 308. 308 is a fraction of the price to shoot. Hard to get good with a rifle when you can't afford to practice with it. Another reason is. All the bear i have seen here thus spring have been within 150 yards. I have taken 2 friends out and both of them got theirs within 50 yards. Besides, here long range really isn't the norm.....at all. I'm honestly thinking of going back to handgun hunting only. Lighter, handier and where i am there is no real disadvantage.

Actually after loading g for both and buying match factory ammo the creedmoor costs less for factory and is the same or cheaper than .308 when using like quality components.
 
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4IDARCHER

4IDARCHER

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Most of the 6.5 bullets have a higher sectional density than the .30s until you get into the really heavy .30s. As far as penetration you'd be splitting hairs trying to figure out which is better for typical hunting distance. Any long distance and I'd take the 6.5s personally.

I have thought about this as well, but I keep thinking does the increase in SD of the 6.5CM make up for the larger wound channel of a .308 Win due to the increase in diameter and bullet weight.
 

Mark86

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I had a .308 for my daughter and she shot it fine, but then I jumped on a 6.5 CM and she shoots that fine too. But now I'm thinking about ditching the 6.5 altogether and going with the .270. A lot cheaper to reload, and better ballistics.

I'm right there with you. I've nearly bought a 6.5CM at least a dozen times now but haven't. My daughter shoots my 25-06 AI well and it's recoil is very mild especially with a brake. It pushes the 115 VLD 3400 fps which makes it easy for her to shoot to 300 yards. I still want a 6.5CM just because they're cool and it would be fun to shoot steel with at long range but I can't see it replacing the old faithful 25
 

wind gypsy

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Good points made. Give me a 6.5 CM for the improved ballistics and reduced recoil on deer and smaller and 308 for increased energy and frontal area on elk.
 

16Bore

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If you can hunt and shoot, none of it matters. But when fellas are worried about whether or not they should squeeze a damn coffee bag or shave their balls, or the price of a sticker, you have to wonder.
 
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Actually after loading g for both and buying match factory ammo the creedmoor costs less for factory and is the same or cheaper than .308 when using like quality components.

I don't buy factory...i roll my own. With milsurp 308 brass being a portion of the price of lapua 6.5 cm brass. Plus you can get milsurp 8lbs powder for what you pay for 2lbs of commercial powder. At the distances I shoot.....less than 300 meters.....milsurp works just fine. Now bullet and primer cost are the same. However, you can practice with milsurp fun on the super cheap.
 
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