January 10th, 2018

Load Data for the Popular 6.5 Creedmoor from Sierra Bullets

Sierra Load Data 6.5 Creedmoor

In the past few years, the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge has become the leading cartridge for tactical/practical gun games. It offers excellent ballistics, moderate recoil, and good accuracy with a variety of powder and bullet combos. Along with the 6.5×47 Lapua, the 6.5 Creedmoor has demonstrated that a .264-Caliber mid-sized caliber is truly a jack of all trades — it can be accurate on paper, win PRS matches, and also harvest game during hunting season. If you own a 6.5 Creedmoor (or plan to get one) and hand-load your ammo, this post should provide a good start. Sierra Bullets now offers 6.5 Creedmoor Load Data for bullets from 120 to 142 grains — the most popular weight range for this chambering.

Sierra Bullets has released very complete load data for the popular 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge. This medium-sized cartridge has become one of the most popular chamberings for tactical and PRS shooters. The 6.5 Creedmoor combines excellent accuracy, good mag-feeding, good barrel life, moderate recoil, and reasonable component cost. That’s why this cartridge has caught on quickly.

The Springfield M1A is now available in 6.5 Creedmoor. For Gas Guns like this, be sure to full-length-size your brass after every firing, with adequate shoulder bump.
M1A 6.5 Creedmoor Sierra Load Data

Sierra Load Data 6.5 CreedmoorDeveloped in 2007 by Dennis DeMille and Dave Emary, the 6.5 Creedmoor is a shortened and improved 30 TC cartridge case that was inspired by the .308 Winchester design. This short action design was created to maximize case capacity and a wide range of loading lengths, while still fitting in standard short action magazines. With the correct twist barrel, the versatile 6.5 Creedmoor can take advantage of the wide range of bullet weights available in 6.5 mm (i.e. .264 caliber). Reloaders should keep in mind that the 6.5 Creedmoor works best with medium to medium-slow powders such as H4350, Varget, Win 760, and RE-17. The light recoil and adaptability of the efficient 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge has already proven itself in high power, precision rifle series and benchrest competitions. Couple that with respectable barrel life and its intrinsic accuracy potential and you have a recipe for success which should insure its legacy for decades to come.

Sierra 6.5 Creedmoor Load Data Manual reloading .264

Here are three tables from the Sierra Bullets Reloading Manual (5th Edition). IMPORTANT — This is just a sample!! Sierra has load data for many other 6.5mm bullet types, including FB, Spitzer, SBT, HPBT, and Tipped MK from 85 grains to 142 grains. To view ALL 6.5 Creedmoor DATA, CLICK HERE.

Sierra Bullets 6.5 Creedmoor Load Data MatchKing Tactical
INDICATES MAXIMUM LOAD – USE CAUTION
LOADS LESS THAN MINIMUM CHARGES SHOWN ARE NOT RECOMMENDED.

Sierra Bullets 6.5 Creedmoor Load Data MatchKing Tactical
INDICATES MAXIMUM LOAD – USE CAUTION
LOADS LESS THAN MINIMUM CHARGES SHOWN ARE NOT RECOMMENDED.

Sierra Bullets 6.5 Creedmoor Load Data MatchKing Tactical
INDICATES MAXIMUM LOAD – USE CAUTION
LOADS LESS THAN MINIMUM CHARGES SHOWN ARE NOT RECOMMENDED.

Permalink News, Reloading, Tactical 1 Comment »
December 9th, 2017

Springfield Armory Now Offers 6.5 Creedmoor M1A Rifles

springfield armory M1a service rifle m14 6.5 CM Creedmoor

The 6.5 Creedmoor craze goes one step further. Soon you can buy a Springfield M1A chambered for this mid-sized cartridge popularized by PRS shooters. Both bolt-action and AR-platform rifles chambered for the 6.5 Creedmoor have been available for quite some time, but this is a new direction for the M1A, which has traditionally been chambered for the 7.62×51 NATO/.308 Winchester round. As chambered for the 6.5 Creedmoor, Springfield’s M1A should be easier on shooters’ shoulders. The 6.5 Creedmoor M1A has 28% less recoil than the .308 Winchester version.*

The new 6.5 Creedmoor M1A features a 22″ medium-contour, 1:8″-twist stainless barrel with factory muzzle brake. The rifle comes with iron sights: .062 post front sight and .0520 aperture rear sight adjustable for ½ MOA windage and 1 MOA elevation. Springfield ships the rifle with a 2-stage trigger tuned to 4.5 – 5 pounds. A Springfield Armory Optics mount is available to fit a magnified optic, but, to be honest, we haven’t been very impressed with that mount.

springfield armory M1a service rifle m14 6.5 CM Creedmoor

Two stock options are offered: a basic black polymer stock (not recommended — it’s weak and flexy) or a deluxe “precision” stock with adjustable cheekpiece and adjustable LOP. The deluxe precision stock, shown above, is much more rigid, and can be configured with front underside Picatinny rail (see video). Rifle Specs HERE.

With the basic polymer stock, the 6.5 Creedmoor weighs 11.4 pounds (unloaded) and has a $1985.00 MSRP. With the adjustable precision stock, the gun is a bit heavier and retails for $2045.00 in either matte black or Flat Dark Earth (FDE).

“Having a 6.5 Creedmoor caliber in the M1A lineup gives long-range shooters more choices with the precision and accuracy they require,” says Springfield Armory CEO Dennis Reese. “They can choose the round they prefer…”, i.e. .308 Win or the 6.5 Creedmoor. Excellent factory ammo is available for both chamberings.

M1A Camp Perry 2009 6.5 Creedmoor .308 Win Winchester
Photo of 2009 M1A Match at Camp Perry. Shooter is Nick Till, 2007 Service Rifle Champion.

If you are looking for a robust semi-auto rifle that has an interesting legacy (the M1A was derived from the U.S. Military’s M14), this new M1A may suit your tastes. Every year at Camp Perry, Springfield Armory sponsors a very popular M1A match which attracts marksmen from around the country. We can’t say for sure that the 6.5 Creedmoor M1As will be allowed in M1A matches, but we would expect they will, though perhaps competing in a separate division.

Springfield Armory M1A with Basic Polymer Stock
springfield armory M1a service rifle m14 6.5 CM Creedmoor


* Comparative Recoil Energy in ft-lbs based on 12-lb rifle with 142gr 6.5 Creedmoor at 2710 FPS vs. 175gr .308 Win at 2600 FPS. Powder charge weight 41.0 grains for 6.5 Creedmoor vs. 48.0 grains for .308 Win. Calculated with online Recoil Calculator.

Permalink New Product, News, Tactical 1 Comment »
October 3rd, 2017

New Savage 10/110 Tactical Rifle with Modular Chassis

Savage 10/110 model 10 PRS Stealth Evolution tactical rifle 6mm 6.5 Creedmoor .338 Lapua Magnum

Savage Introduces 10/110 Stealth Evolution in Six Popular Chamberings
Savage has just introduced the new 10/110 Stealth Evolution Chassis Rifle in six chamberings, including the PRS-pleasing 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This rifle will be offered in right-hand and left-hand models. Big Boomer fans can order a .300 Winchester Magnum or the .338 Lapua Magnum.

.223 Rem, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Win, .300 Win Mag, .338 Lapua Magnum

Savage 10/110 model 10 PRS Stealth Evolution tactical rifle 6mm 6.5 Creedmoor .338 Lapua Magnum

The 10/110 Stealth Evolution pairs a heavy fluted 5R barrel with a monolithic aluminum chassis finished in bronze Cerakote. The hard polymer-ceramic coating resists abrasion, corrosion, and impact damage. The rifle features a factory-blueprinted 10/110 action, matched with user-adjustable AccuTrigger. The Stealth Evolution comes standard with an extra-long top rail and factory muzzle brake. MSRP for standard calibers is $1799.00 (.300 Win Mag $1999.00 MSRP; .338 Lapua Magnum $2149.00 MSRP).

Savage 10/110 model 10 PRS Stealth Evolution tactical rifle 6mm 6.5 Creedmoor .338 Lapua Magnum

AccurateShooter Comment: We like the availability of the 6mm Creedmoor chambering, which is finding favor among many PRS shooters. The 6mm CM has less recoil and a flatter trajectory — plus 6mm bullets are cheaper. Savage did the 6mm version right. At 26″, the barrel is long enough, and the 1:7.5″ twist can stabilize the new 110gr SMKs. That Magpul PRS GEN3 stock looks good — controls are tucked away and the toe can be used with a sand-bag. Some other tactical stocks have rails and/or other “pointy bits” that snag on a rear bag. In .223 Rem or 6mm Creedmoor, this rifle would be a good choice for Prairie Dog safaris. We do wish Savage offered a front sled for bag use though.

Savage 10/110 model 10 PRS Stealth Evolution tactical rifle 6mm 6.5 Creedmoor .338 Lapua Magnum

Permalink New Product, Tactical 3 Comments »
June 18th, 2017

6.5 Creedmoor with Howa 1500 Barreled Action in MDT Chassis

Howa 6.5 Creedmoor barrel action tactical rifle Sierra RifleShooter.com
RifleShooter.com built this rig with Howa 1500 barreled action and MDT ESS chassis. READ TEST HERE.

We’ve been telling folks that the Japanese Howa 1500 barreled actions are an attractive option for a hunting, varminting, or tactical rifle. Priced at under $450.00, these barreled actions include the excellent HACT two-stage trigger. These Howa 1500 actions are smooth-running (noticeably more so than some “major-brand” domestic receivers).

Our friends at RifleShooter.com recently acquired a Howa 1500 barreled action in 6.5 Creedmoor and installed it in an MDT ESS modular chassis. This project turned out well. The barreled action mated well to the ESS chassis, providing an ergonomic platform with comfortable grip, adjustable cheekpiece, and adjustable LOP. Most importantly the gun shot well. With virtually no load development, the project rifle delivered 3/4-MOA accuracy right out of the gate.

Howa 6.5 Creedmoor barrel action tactical rifle Sierra RifleShooter.com

As tested with Hornady brass and Hodgdon Varget powder pushing Sierra 123gr MatchKings, the Howa 1500 MDT showed good accuracy right from the start. With more load development (and a few more rounds through the new barrel), half-MOA groups may be possible.

Brownells now sells barreled Howa actions in a variety of configurations. Rifleshooter.com acquired a Howa 1500 barreled action with a 24″ #6 contour barrel chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. RifleShooter.com plans to test this barreled action in multiple modular chassis systems. That should provide an interesting comparison test, providing the pros and cons of various stock/chassis configurations.

Read the Full 6.5 Creedmoor Project Review HERE »

RifleShooter.com’s Editor writes: “I was pleasantly surprised by the number of chassis and stock offerings for the Howa barreled action.” For this project rifle, RifleShooter.com chose the Modular Driven Technologies (MDT) Elite Sniper System (ESS) chassis, for the initial build.

Like MDT’s other chassis systems, the ESS uses any AR-15/M16 M4 pistol grip. The ESS departs from the rest of the MDT product line it does not use a standard AR-15/M16 M4 stock. Eliminating this interface allows for a design that does not increase the length of pull. The stock has an adjustable comb, adjustable length of pull, and horizontally adjustable recoil pad. Comb and LOP adjustments are accomplished with a hand wheel, plus a cap screw and clamp system.

RifleShooter.com’s Howa 6.5 Creedmoor rifle has the following components:

While the HACT 2-stage trigger is very good, RifleShooter.com’s Editor replaced the HACT with a Timney because he favors a single-stage design. The Timney adjusts lower than the HACT, allowing a crisp pull at ~1.5 pounds: “You’ll notice I swapped out the factory trigger in favor of a Timney. I’ve had great luck with their products and Timney’s Howa trigger was no exception. Adjusted to 1.5 pounds, it is a pleasure to shoot with.”

Permalink Gunsmithing, Tactical No Comments »
April 3rd, 2017

Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor Brass Performs Great in Tough Field Test

6.5 Guys 6.5 creedmoor Lapua brass cartridge casing filed test 20 reload cycles

The verdict is in — Lapua’s new 6.5 Creedmoor brass is ultra-tough and very consistent. So sayeth the 6.5 Guys, who recently field-tested the brass, loading it to very stout levels. Even after 20 reloadings, the Lapua 6.5 CM brass held up extremely well. This brass, with its small primer pocket and small flash hole, really does out-perform other 6.5 Creedmoor brass offerings. Yes the Lapua brass is pricey, but it outlasts the alternatives, and, if the 6.5 Guys test is any indication, you can run higher velocities with this brass compared to other brands. Watch the 6.5 Guys Lapua brass test in this video:

If you have a 6.5 Creedmoor rifle, or are considering getting a gun chambered for this cartridge, we strongly recommend you watch the full 6.5 Guys Video. Ed and Steve spent a lot of time conducting this test, and the video includes helpful summaries of their findings.

The Evolution of the 6.5 Creedmoor
Over the last few years the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge has become increasingly popular among precision rifle enthusiasts. However, availability of brass cases was limited to only a few manufacturers. In early 2017 Lapua introduced to the market its own 6.5 Creedmoor case with a unique twist — the case has a small rifle primer pocket and small flash hole — like the 6mmBR Norma and 6.5×47 Lapua.

6.5 Guys 6.5 creedmoor Lapua brass cartridge casing filed test 20 reload cycles

Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor Brass — Test Protocol
The 6.5 Guys tested a box of Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge brass supplied by Graf & Sons. The project involved two phases. First the 6.5 Guys weighed and measured the cases to assess weight uniformity and dimensional consistency (which was impressive). Then came phase II — the “torture test”. The 6.5 Guys loaded the brass with a very stout charge of H4350 pushing 140gr Hornady ELD bullets*. The brass was loaded and shot over 20 times. This durability test was conducted to see how many repeated firings and resizing/reloading cycles the brass could handle. Remarkably, after 20+ loadings, the brass was still holding up — no “blown-out” primer pockets. This stuff is tough. The 6.5 Guys note: “You can go at least 20 reloadings without a split neck…but brass spring-back may be another issue.”

After 20 Load Cycles — Going to the Extreme
Once the Lapua cases had been shot 20+ times, the 6.5 Guys tried something more extreme. They stuffed the brass with a very hot load — a powder charge weight well beyond a sensible maximum. Even with this “beyond max” load, the Lapua brass held up but there was some evidence of pressure on the primers: “You do see some cratering on the primer with a Remington 700 that you don’t see with a Defiance action, but nothing to indicate a potential pierced primer.”

6.5 Guys 6.5 creedmoor Lapua brass cartridge casing filed test 20 reload cycles
WARNING: The 6.5 Guys deliberately used a very stout load for testing. Do not attempt to duplicate. This load was shot in a faster-than-average barrel with a chamber set up for long 140gr bullets. You may not be able to achieve similar velocities — maybe not even close. As with all hand-loading, always start low and work up charges in small increments.

6.5 Creedmoor vs. 6.5×47 Lapua — Battle of the Middle-Weights
With this new brass, does the 6.5 Creedmoor enjoy an edge over the 6.5×47 Lapua? The 6.5 Guys answer: “That’s hard to say. From a market share standpoint, the 6.5 CM is more popular in the USA. From a technical perspective, 6.5×47 Lapua offers near identical performance with better barrel life. But from our tests, you can drive a 140-grain bullet much faster with 6.5 Creedmoor than you ever can (safely) with a 6.5×47 Lapua. That’s our non-answer answer….”

The 6.5 Guys concluded that the 6.5 Creedmoor will enjoy a velocity advantage: “We’ve had a number of discussions with RBros and other folks about this. It appears that 6.5×47 still has the edge as far as barrel life. But it also looks like you can push a 140gr bullet pretty fast with the 6.5 CM — speeds that are not obtainable with the 6.5×47 Lapua.”

* Why were the Hornady 140gr ELDs chosen for testing? The 6.5 Guys wanted a bullet in the 140gr weight range. Beyond that, the choice was fortuitous. Ed explained: “Our bullet selection was quite scientific — we sat down at my reloading bench and looked around. Saw the Hornady 140 ELD Match and decided to roll with that.”

Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading 22 Comments »