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November 6th, 2022

Sunday Gunday: Getting Started in PRS/NRL Competition

65 Guys Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence PRS Precision Rifle Series Competition Tips

Our friends, Ed Mobley and Steve Lawrence, aka the “6.5 Guys”, have written an excellent article on getting started in practical/tactical competition. If you are new to the game, these tips can help you save money, progress faster, and have more fun. Here are article highlights, but we recommend you read the full story, 5 Tips for Attending Your First Precision Rifle Match, on www.65guys.com.

We often meet people who are new to long range precision shooting, and want to improve their knowledge and skill level. However, they aren’t sure if they are ready to sign up to compete in a match. They often ask, “What knowledge or skills are necessary to compete in a match?” Others may state, “I need to purchase this gear or that gear before I can attend a match”. For those guys who have a strong interest in precision rifle shooting, and who wish to chec out a precision rifle match, below are Five Tips to make it a positive experience.

TIP ONE: Make Plans and Commit to Go

First you need to start by finding a match to attend. This may entail a little bit of research and investigative work on your part to find what matches are scheduled in the next few months. We recommend starting with any match that may be within a reasonable driving distance. This may likely be a local “club” match, many of which are held on a regular basis. These make great venues because it will provide an opportunity to meet some of the regular attendees as well as shooters that are from your geographic area. Additionally, most of the smaller matches are a little more relaxed in terms of level of competitiveness.

Once you decide on the match you want to attend, do your homework. This means finding out if you need to pre-register or pre-pay the match fee. Commit to going by registering for the match and putting it on your schedule. Be sure to find other useful information for questions such as:

— What time should I arrive?
— Is there a mandatory safety briefing for new shooters at that venue?
— What is the travel time required to get to the match site?
— How many stages will there be?
— Is there a description of the stages available before the match?
— How many rounds should you bring?
— Are there special equipment requirements? (E.g. do you need chamber flags, is there a pistol stage?)

65 Guys Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence PRS Precision Rifle Series Competition Tips

TIP TWO: Bring What You Have

(Don’t Spend a Fortune at the Start)
Some new shooters often assume they need a custom match rifle or all of the miscellaneous shooting gear associated with long range precision shooting to compete in match. While having a Kestrel weather meter and a high quality laser range finder and other shooting accoutrements are invaluable kit, you will find other shooters at your first match that will provide you with the information and coaching you need to get on target.

In fact, the only gear you really need to bring is a scoped rifle with a bipod and ammo capable of consistently shooting within one MOA. Also, be sure to know the ballistic drops or have a ballistic drop table prepared for your rifle/ammo to dial the correct DOPE on your scope for different target ranges. Many of the other participants at the match will be willing to let you borrow a support bag, bipod, tripod or other gear if you need one — just ask. Don’t use the excuse of not having the right gear to delay getting out to a match!

One reason not to make a big initial investment in a new rifle and assorted gear before competing, is we’ve seen a number of people come into the sport and try it for a year and then make the decision to move on to something else.

TIP THREE: Be Prepared to Learn

As a new shooter at a match, there is no better opportunity to learn. We often look to our local club matches as a group ‘training’ session to prepare for the bigger matches. You will find competitors at all levels of skill and many of your fellow shooters will enthusiastically provide helpful advice once they learn you are new to the sport. Take advantage of the opportunity to ask questions if you would like ideas for how to engage a stage, but also be sure to do more listening than talking as you receive guidance and tips from more experienced competitors.

65 Guys Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence PRS Precision Rifle Series Competition Tips

Watch and observe other shooters and how they approach and ‘game’ a specific stage or course of fire. You’ll begin to recognize which shooting positions work best for different scenarios, and maybe even come up with some new ones that no one has thought of before.

Seeing what the better shooters do is an invaluable instructional tool. You can use your smart phone’s video camera to record other shooters (with their permission). When you’re ready to shoot, ask another shooter to record your performance. Watching yourself will point out needed areas of improvement.

65 Guys Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence PRS Precision Rifle Series Competition Tips

After each match conduct an informal after action review and summarize for yourself the things that went well and what you should continue to do. You should also identify the specific shooting skills you should develop and make a plan to integrate the appropriate practice drills into your practice sessions. Finally, if you maintain a shooter’s data book or journal you’ll want to note things such as:

After Action Review – How you did, what went well, things you need to work on in practice.
Stage Observations – Successful methods used for specific courses of fire. Note barricades, positions used, specific gear used for stages.
Gear Observations – How your rifle/gear performed, what new items you should add to your “buy list”.

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting

TIP FOUR: Be Safe and Have Fun

You’ve all heard a parent or teacher say, “It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye.” The same can be said of the shooting sports. Safe handling of firearms is the number one rule at any match, and comes before the FUN part in terms of importance.

Before all matches start there will always be some form of a mandatory safety briefing. Make sure you know, understand, and follow any unique safety protocols for the match you attend. Some matches require all rifles have chamber flags inserted and are stowed in bags/cases while not on the firing line — other matches may not. If you run afoul of any safety rules, you risk the chance of being disqualified from a stage or worse, the entire match.

65 Guys Ed Mobley Steve Lawrence PRS Precision Rifle Series Competition Tips

The second rule is simply have fun. This starts with having a good attitude throughout the day. Keep in mind that as a new competitor you should think of a match as a solid day of practice and training. If you blow a stage, use it as an opportunity to diagnose what you could have done differently or what you need to improve on — then smile and drive on.

Any day at the range or shooting is a good day. A match is an opportunity to hang out with like-minded people who are passionate about shooting and impacting targets far-far away. Life is great when you are doing what you enjoy!

TIP FIVE: Make Friends

There is no better way to meet lots of precision rifle shooters and make friends than at a match. The people that attend the tactical precision matches on a regular basis are those that have ‘fallen into the deep end of the pool’ and are really into the sport. As a result, they have become part of the local precision shooting community. As you strike up conversations at the match, find out if your new-found friends visit specific forum boards or social media outlets, or if there are other matches they attend.

Precision shooters tend to congregate and share information in different corners of the Internet. It will serve you well to meet some of the guys in person at matches and be able to connect a face to a screen name. As you develop your friendships and develop a level of trust, you will find opportunities become available to shoot with others in your local area, or get ‘read-in’ on a secret honey-hole of a spot to shoot long distance. Additionally, the local shooting community will often find it more convenient to sell or trade gear and equipment locally than deal with buyers/sellers that are out of state.

Getting Started in PRS/NRL — One Man’s Story

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting

My name is Jeff Cosgrove. I have shot for 20+ years but I found my interest in shooting was dwindling over time. I got somewhat bored with shooting paper at 100 yards or plinking cans out in the desert. About 3 years ago I decided I wanted to shoot long range. I picked up a used MPA in .300 Win Mag and started shooting long range with a new buddy. That day I fell in love with guns all over again.

With that new .300 WM I found my reloads were not up to my expectations (high ES/SD), so I purchased all new reloading hardware. One of my purchases was a used Benchsource Annealer. The guy I bought that from asked if I had ever tried PRS and he invited me to check out a match. So I went to a local PRS event as a spectator. I looked at many rigs and took notes. By the end of the day I knew this was something I really wanted to do. I then acquired a used chassis rifle that I thought would work well for PRS.

After working with that first PRS rifle, a 6.5 CM with Stiller Tac30 action, MDT chassis, and Proof Carbon-wrapped barrel, I quickly learned that gun did not handle and balance the way I hoped. It was too light in the front, the ergos were poor, and scope eye relief was not optimal. So I decided to build my own GEN 2 PRS rifle, a switch-barrel rig that I now use in competition. READ FULL Story HERE.

Load Development Using 6.5 Guys Custom Spreadsheet

To hold and analyze his load development data, Jeff uses the spreadsheet from 65Guys.com. this can really help identifying your best load. The Excel spreadsheet is detailed, yet makes it simple to analyze your data. You can even copy and paste your chronograph data if your chrono logs on to a SD card.

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

In this 6.5 Guys video Steve provides an overview and tutorial for using the Excel load development analysis model that he has developed. The Excel Load Development Analysis Spreadsheet version 2.0 is FREE. Download from the 6.5 Guys Load Development Page.

NOTE: If that direct link does not work, CLICK HERE, then look for the “Load Development Analysis Model Version 2.0″ link in the second paragraph.

In this video Steve explains some key statistical concepts for performing load data analysis. He also provides tips and guidance for determining the optimal load for your rifle as you analyze the load data you’ve collected.

Good Resource for PRS/NRL Newbies — Practical Shooter’s Guide

Marcus Blanchard, $19.99 Paperback, $9.99 Kindle

Marcus Blanchard Practical Shooter's Guide

Thinking of getting started in the Practical/Tactical shooting game? Looking for ways to be more stable when shooting from unconventional positions? Then you may want to read Marcus Blanchard’s Practical Shooter’s Guide (A How-To Approach for Unconventional Firing Positions and Training). Unlike almost every “how to shoot” book on the market, Blanchard’s work focuses on the shooting skills and positions you need to succeed in PRS matches and similar tactical competitions. Blanchard provides clear advice on shooting from barricades, from roof-tops, from steep angles. Blanchard says you need to train for these types of challenges: “I believe the largest factor in the improvement of the average shooter isn’t necessarily the gear; it’s the way the shooter approaches obstacles and how they properly train for them.”

Permalink - Videos, Competition, Shooting Skills, Tactical 1 Comment »
September 8th, 2022

6.5 Creedmoor LOAD DATA Collection from Sierra Bullets

6.5 creedmoor load data sierra bullets

Sierra Bullets has released extensive 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, and is now one of the most popular chamberings in factory rifles.

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.

Two More Great 6.5 Creedmoor Reloading Resouces

Want More 6.5 Creedmoor Load Info? View Starline’s 6.5 Creedmoor Guide by Gavin Gear:

Download full 6.5 Creedmoor Guide at StarlineBrass.com.

PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey
The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Reloading, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
August 16th, 2022

DIY 6mm Creedmoor PRS Rig with Howa Barreled Action

Gavin Gear 6mm Creedmoor Howa 1500 KRG Bravo chassis stock

The 6mm Creedmoor has become one of the most popular cartridges for PRS/NRL competition, and it also works great in the varmint fields. There are many 6mm Creedmoor factory rifle options now, such as the Savage Model 10 in GRS stock and the Ruger Precision Rifle (6mm Creedmoor).

Do-It-Yourself 6mm Creedmoor Rifle Project — UltimateReloader.com
Another cost-effective option for 6mm Creedmoor fans is to build your own rifle, starting with a Howa barreled action. The Howa 1500 is a mag-fed, flat-bottomed bolt action that ships with the excellent HACT 2-stage trigger. Howa barreled actions have been available with a variety of barrel lengths and contours, starting at about $440.00 at Brownells. (However, many are currently out-of-stock).

There are quite a few good stocks/chassis systems now offered for Howa 1500 actions, including the excellent KRG Bravo Chassis, which features an ergonomic composite outer shell over a precision-machined inner chassis.

Gavin Gear 6mm Creedmoor Howa 1500 KRG Bravo chassis stock
Gavin Gear fitted a KRG enclosed fore-end and Mystic Precision MPOD to his 6mm Creedmoor rifle.

Our friend Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com has built a nice 6mm Creedmoor rifle using a Howa 1500 heavy-barreled action and KRG Bravo Chassis. This project has proven very successful. The rifle has shown impressive accuracy and outstanding reliability. Gavin hopes to use this rifle in practical/tactical competitions later this year.

In this video, Gavin fits KRG’s enclosed fore-end to the KRG Bravo chassis. This accessory fore-end features a top Picatinny rail and various attachment options on the sides and lower section. Here you can see the enclosed fore-end (upper right) next to the factory forend included with the KRG Bravo (lower left):

Gavin Gear 6mm Creedmoor Howa 1500 KRG Bravo chassis stock

Gavin then fits a Mystic Precision MPod from EGW. This stable, wide-base bipod uses a T-Slot rail for rifle attachment, and has legs that adjust independently for height. The video shows the rifle coming together step-by-step. This is something the average guy can do with simple tools — no gunsmithing is required, because the Howa barreled action is pre-chambered for the 6mm Creedmoor cartridge.

In the video above Gavin unboxes his Howa 1500 barreled action from Brownells. He then mounts the barreled action to the KRG Bravo stock, checking the torque levels. Next Gavin borescopes the hammer-forged barrel (5:55) noting: “What I saw I liked — there are practically no tooling marks. The finish on the lands and grooves looks really good”. Lastly, Gavin tested the trigger with his TriggerScan TS-11 (6:24), confirming a two-stage pull weight of about 2.25 pounds out of the box.

6mm Creedmoor Lapua cartridge brass

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August 12th, 2022

6mm Creedmoor Load Data from Sierra Plus PRB Bonus

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets
NOTE: The 6mm Creedmoor now does have an official SAAMI specification. It is no longer just a wildcat.

CLICK HERE for Sierra Bullets 6mm Creedmoor LOAD DATA PDF »

Sierra Bullets Load Data 6mm Creedmoor reloading tips

Sierra Bullets has published load data for the 6mm Creedmoor cartridge, a necked-down version of the popular 6.5 Creedmoor. Sierra has released very comprehensive 6mm Creedmoor load data, covering fifteen (15) different bullets from 55 to 110 grains. NOTE: Hornady-brand brass was used for Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor load tests, not the newer, stronger Lapua 6.5 CM brass with small primer pockets. Hand-loaders using Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor brass necked to 6mm may have to adjust their loads.

Sierra writes: “As soon as the 6.5 Creedmoor was released in 2007, a 6mm version was being envisioned. After the 6mm Creedmoor demonstrated its worth at 1000 yards it began to catch the attention of Precision Rifle Series (PRS) competitors. The 6mm Creedmoor is a great fit for those looking for an AR platform-friendly cartridge. It delivers velocities very similar to the .243 Win and yet fits the AR10 magazine length[.] The 30-degree shoulder makes this a very efficient case and helps prolong case life as well. The 6mm Creedmoor works well with powders such as H4350, [RE-16], RE-17, and Ramshot Hunter for heavier long-range bullet weights. Slightly faster powders such as RE-15, Win 760, and Vihtavuori N540 work well with lighter weight bullets.”

Sierra Bullets Tested for 6mm Creedmoor Load Data
55gr BlitzKing (#1502)
60gr HP (#1500)
70gr HPBT (#1505)
70gr BlitzKing (#1507)
75gr HP (#1510)
80gr SBT (#1515)
85gr Spitzer (#1520)
85gr HPBT (#1530)
90gr FMJBT (#1535)
95gr HPBT (#1537)
95gr TMK (#7295)
100gr Spitzer (#1540)
100gr SBT (#1560)
107gr HPBT (#1570)
110gr HPBT (#1575)

In developing its 6mm Creedmoor load data, Sierra tested a very wide selection of propellants, two dozen overall. For the smaller bullets, fast-burning powders such as Benchmark, H4895, and CFE223 were tested. For the heavier 100+ grain bullets, Sierra tested a selection of medium-burn-rate powders including H4350, Reloder 16, Reloder 17, Varget, and Superformance. Sierra did a very thorough job. We know this information will be welcomed by 6mm Creedmoor shooters.

Don’t know what powder to try first? For the 107-110 grain bullets, if you want best accuracy and low ES/SD, our Forum members recommend Alliant Reloder 16 and Hodgdon H4350. If you are seeking max velocity with the 110-grainer, look at Hodgdon Superformance and Reloder 19.

Here are Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor Load Data Charts for 90-95 grain bullets plus the 107gr MK and 110gr MK. There are five other tables for other bullet types.

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets


BONUS: PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey

The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. One cautionary note: These PRS guys may be loading fairly hot, so work up gradually, 0.3 grains at a time. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

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July 3rd, 2022

6mm ARC Cartridge — SAAMI Specs, Components, Videos

6mm ARC brownells bolts cartridge loaded ammunition hornady

In June 2020, Hornady introduced the 6mm ARC, a new SAAMI cartridge optimized for AR-platform rifles*. The new 6mm ARC is basically a 6.5 Grendel necked down to 6mm, with the shoulder moved back around .030″. That pushed-back shoulder does reduce case capacity (and velocity), but we assume Hornady did that to create a shorter, proprietary chamber so people could not simply neck-down Lapua 6.5 Grendel brass, as has been done for years with Robert Whitley’s outstanding 6mm AR wildcat.

CLICK Image for official SAAMI Specifications:
6mm ARC brownells bolts cartridge loaded ammunition hornady

If you are intrigued by the 6mm ARC, you’ll find the products you need at Brownells — uppers, barrels, bolts, and magazines. Brownells also sells Hornady-made 6mm ARC factory-loaded ammo, but most varieties are out-of-stock right now, as is the 6mm ARC brass. More brass and ammo should arrive soon. Midsouth is also taking brass/ammo backorders. For general information, see 6mm ARC Info Page.

What Is the 6mm ARC Cartridge?
6mm ARC brownells bolts cartridge loaded ammunition hornadyThe 6mm ARC cartridge is a new SAAMI-spec cartridge based on the 6.5 Grendel case necked down for 6mm bullets, with the shoulder moved back 0.030. Yes it is designed to run in AR15-platform rifles. You’ll need a new barrel, bolt, and mags. If you already have an AR chambered in 6.5 Grendel, the ONLY thing you need to change is the barrel. Everything else — bolt, magazines, gas system – is compatible with 6mm ARC.

▶ Official SAAMI Cartridge (not wildcat)
▶ Fits standard AR15-platform rifles
▶ Fits Short/Mini action bolt rifles
▶ Efficient short, fat case design
▶ 30-degree case shoulder

For more INFO, see 6mm ARC Info Page.

What Do I Need To Shoot the 6mm ARC?
Faxon and Ballistic Advantage are already producing barrels, with more manufacturers sure to follow. All the other required components are already on the market for 6.5 Grendel rifles. Aero Precision already offers complete 6mm ARC uppers.

If you’re converting a standard 5.56×45 mm (.223 Rem) AR15 upper to shoot 6mm ARC, you’ll need a 6mm barrel, a Type II 6.5 Grendel bolt carrier group, and new magazines. Some folks have suggested standard AR mags will work, but trust us, you want the magazines that have been designed for 6.5 Grendel. All the hardware you need is currently available at Brownells.

6mm ARC brownells bolts cartridge loaded ammunition hornady

6mm ARC Videos from Hornady (18 Total)

6mm ARC: Overview
6mm ARC: Handloading
6mm ARC Initial Offerings
6mm ARC: AR-15 vs AR-10
6mm ARC vs. 6.5 Grendel
6mm ARC vs the Creedmoors
6mm ARC: 6.5 Creedmoor of the Gas Gun World
6mm ARC vs 308 WIN
6mm ARC: How it started

6mm ARC: What is it
6mm ARC: Military Application
6mm ARC vs. 6.8 SPC
6mm ARC: Bolt Gun Application
6mm ARC: Cartridge Design
6mm ARC: Best AR-15 Cartridge
6mm ARC: Hunting
6mm ARC: Match
6mm ARC: Barrel Length


* While 6-6.5 Grendel shooters are known to run stout pressures, the new 6mm ARC cartridge has a relatively moderate Maximum Average Pressure (MAP) rating of 52,000 psi according to the official SAAMI specifications. For a variety of reasons, is wise to keep pressures in a semi-auto rifle moderate. Don’t chase the velocities you might get in a bolt-action gun.

Permalink - Articles, - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
March 31st, 2022

6.5 Creedmoor LOAD DATA from Sierra Bullets

Sierra Load Data 6.5 Creedmoor

Sierra Bullets has released extensive 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, and is now one of the most popular chamberings in factory rifles.

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.

Two More Great 6.5 Creedmoor Reloading Resouces

Want More 6.5 Creedmoor Load Info? View Starline’s 6.5 Creedmoor Guide by Gavin Gear:

Download full 6.5 Creedmoor Guide at StarlineBrass.com.

PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey
The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

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November 19th, 2021

Nosler Reloading Guide 9 Has Data for 101 Cartridge Types

Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual

Nosler now offers the Nosler Reloading Guide #9, the latest in a respected series of hardback Nosler load manuals. This 800-page guide covers 101 cartridge types. New in this edition you’ll find the popular 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, and 7.62×39, along with 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 27 Nosler and 33 Nosler. This new guide draws from thousands of hours in the Nosler Ballistic Lab, along with the experience of many respected experts.

The book is available now for $27.99 at Grafs.com. In addition, much of the book’s latest load data is available for free on the Nosler.com online LOAD DATA Center. But to get ALL the data, PLUS the technical articles, you’ll need to buy the book.

The Nosler Reloading Guide 9 Reloading Manual provides load data for 101 rifle and handgun cartridges with hundreds of new powder additions. A comprehensive data set for today’s reloader, this manual is current with every bullet that Nosler offers through 2020 from 17 caliber up to 458 caliber in the rifle section and 9mm up to 45 caliber in the handgun section. Nine new cartridges were added to this manual. These include: 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, 27 Nosler, 7.62×39 and 33 Nosler. Also new for the Nosler Reloading Guide #9 are cartridge introductions written by veteran outdoor writers and industry tech experts. The 800-page book also has helpful “how-to” sections such as “Getting Ready to Reload”.

Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual
Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual

Q. Why Buy a Book when Load Data is Available Online from Powder Makers?

There are good, solid reasons to buy print-format loading guides produced by bullet-makers. If you go to the Hodgdon online Reloading Data Center you’ll only find loads with Hodgdon, IMR, and Winchester powders — the key brands they sell. In a book such as this Nosler #9 or the Sierra Reloading Manual, you will find loads with a much wider selection of powders including Vihtavuori, Alliant, Accurate, Norma, Ramshot, and other brands. You won’t find a Reloder 16 or VV N140 load on Hodgdon’s website.

In addition, it is handy to have loads in a print edition which is easy to access on your load bench. You don’t need a computer or an internet connection. And using a book is often faster than a web interface when quickly scanning through a variety of bullet choices for a cartridge.

Along with the Nosler #9 Manual, here are four other recommended Reloading Manuals:

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September 28th, 2021

6mm Creedmoor Load Data from Sierra

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets
NOTE: The 6mm Creedmoor now does have an official SAAMI specification. It is no longer just a wildcat.

CLICK HERE for Sierra Bullets 6mm Creedmoor LOAD DATA PDF »

Sierra Bullets Load Data 6mm Creedmoor reloading tips

Sierra Bullets has published load data for the 6mm Creedmoor cartridge, a necked-down version of the popular 6.5 Creedmoor. Sierra has released very comprehensive 6mm Creedmoor load data, covering fifteen (15) different bullets from 55 to 110 grains. NOTE: Hornady-brand brass was used for Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor load tests, not the newer, superior Lapua 6mm Creedmoor brass with small primer pockets. Hand-loaders using the stronger Lapua 6mm Creedmoor brass may want to to adjust their loads.

Sierra writes: “As soon as the 6.5 Creedmoor was released in 2007, a 6mm version was being envisioned. After the 6mm Creedmoor demonstrated its worth at 1000 yards it began to catch the attention of Precision Rifle Series (PRS) competitors. The 6mm Creedmoor is a great fit for those looking for an AR platform-friendly cartridge. It delivers velocities very similar to the .243 Win and yet fits the AR10 magazine length[.] The 30-degree shoulder makes this a very efficient case and helps prolong case life as well. The 6mm Creedmoor works well with powders such as H4350, [RE-16], RE-17, and Ramshot Hunter for heavier long-range bullet weights. Slightly faster powders such as RE-15, Win 760, and Vihtavuori N540 work well with lighter weight bullets.”

Sierra Bullets Tested for 6mm Creedmoor Load Data
55gr BlitzKing (#1502)
60gr HP (#1500)
70gr HPBT (#1505)
70gr BlitzKing (#1507)
75gr HP (#1510)
80gr SBT (#1515)
85gr Spitzer (#1520)
85gr HPBT (#1530)
90gr FMJBT (#1535)
95gr HPBT (#1537)
95gr TMK (#7295)
100gr Spitzer (#1540)
100gr SBT (#1560)
107gr HPBT (#1570)
110gr HPBT (#1575)

In developing its 6mm Creedmoor load data, Sierra tested a very wide selection of propellants, two dozen overall. For the smaller bullets, fast-burning powders such as Benchmark, H4895, and CFE223 were tested. For the heavier 100+ grain bullets, Sierra tested a selection of medium-burn-rate powders including H4350, Reloder 16, Reloder 17, Varget, and Superformance. Sierra did a very thorough job. We know this information will be welcomed by 6mm Creedmoor shooters.

Don’t know what powder to try first? For the 107-110 grain bullets, if you want best accuracy and low ES/SD, our Forum members recommend Alliant Reloder 16 and Hodgdon H4350. If you are seeking max velocity with the 110-grainer, look at Hodgdon Superformance and Reloder 19.

Here are Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor Load Data Charts for 90-95 grain bullets plus the 107gr MK and 110gr MK. There are five other tables for other bullet types.

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets


BONUS: PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey

The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. One cautionary note: These PRS guys may be loading fairly hot, so work up gradually, 0.3 grains at a time. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

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July 17th, 2021

Lapua Cartridge Brass in Stock at Creedmoor Sports and Graf’s

Lapua brass Creedmoor sports Graf Sons Graf's 6mmBR cartridge .223 Rem .308 Win 6mm 7mm .284 Winchester

Lapua brass Creedmoor sports Graf Sons Graf's 6mmBR cartridge .223 Rem .308 Win 6mm 7mm .284 WinchesterGood news for serious hand-loaders — a large selection of premium-quality Lapua brass is now IN STOCK at Creedmoor Sports and Grafs.com. You’ll find a wide variety of cartridge types available for purchase today at these two leading vendors. Check the lists below.

We’re happy to report that Lapua Brass is IN STOCK, because finding top quality reloading components (brass, bullets, powder, and especially primers) has been a major challenge over the past year. It looks like both Graf & Sons and Creedmoor Sports have received large shipments of Lapua cartridge brass recently. So if need good brass, check the availability list below, and then place your orders. Sorry, no 6mmBR, 6.5 Grendel, 6.5×55, 7mm-08, or .30-06 brass at either vendor right now.

As of 9:00 am on Saturday July 17, 2021, here are some of the rifle cartridge types we found in stock.

Creedmoor Sports Lapua Rifle Brass IN STOCK »

Lapua .220 Russian Brass $116.95
Lapua .223 Rem Brass $63.95
Lapua 22-250 Rem Brass $99.95
Lapua .243 Win Brass $109.95
Lapua 6.5×47 Lapua Brass $121.95
Lapua .260 Rem Brass $109.95
Lapua .284 Winchester Brass $137.49
Lapua .308 Win Brass Large Primer Pocket $83.95
Lapua .308 Win Palma Brass Small Primer Pocket $89.95
Lapua .338 Lapua Magnum Brass $299.95

CLICK HERE for Creedmoor Sports Lapua Brass Sales Page
NOTE: On that page, items IN STOCK are listed first. Back Order is allowed for most Lapua brass types not currently in stock. Prices subject to change.

Grafs & Sons Lapua Rifle Brass IN STOCK »

Lapua .220 Russian Brass $128.29
Lapua .223 Rem. Brass $68.99
Lapua 6mm Creedmoor Brass Small Primer Pocket $55.99 (50 ct)
Lapua .243 Win Brass $120.99
Lapua 6.5×47 Lapua Brass $134.99
Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor Brass Small Primer Pocket $103.99
Lapua .260 Rem Brass $120.99
Lapua .284 Winchester Brass $144.99
Lapua 7.62×39 Brass $85.99
Lapua 7.62x54R Russian Brass $158.99
Lapua 7x65R Brass $119.99
Lapua .300 Norma Magnum Brass $226.99
Lapua .338 Norma Magnum Brass $328.99
Lapua .338 Lapua Magnum Brass $321.99

CLICK HERE for Grafs.com Lapua Brass Sales Page
NOTE: On that page, items IN STOCK are listed first. You can Login to be notified when out-of-stock items are back in stock. Prices subject to change.

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July 4th, 2021

Sunday GunDay: 6mm CM and 6.5 CM Switch-Barrel PRS Rig

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting

Today we feature a modern switch-barrel PRS chassis rifle set up for quick changes between 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor barrels. The owner, Forum member Jeff Cosgrove (aka “Punkur67″) uses the 6 CM barrel for competition, favoring the reduced recoil over its 6.5 mm big brother. He does use the 6.5 CM barrel for practice (given its better barrel life). The 6.5 CM barrel also gives him the chance to shoot a variety of factory 6.5 Creedmoor ammo.

- Terminus Zeus action with Quick Change (QC) barrel option.
– 6mm Creedmoor Pre-Fit Bartlein Heavy Varmint 400MODBB barrel for matches
– 6.5 Creedmoor Pre-Fit Benchmark Heavy Palma barrel for training
– MPA BA Competition chassis with full weight kit
– Zero Compromise Optic ZCO 5-27x56mm FFP scope
– TriggerTech Diamond trigger

This rifle represents an evolution for Jeff. Each step along the way in his PRS journey, he has learned more about what he wants and needs in a competition rifle. And what you see here, from the $3760 ZC527 scope to his high-tech reloading equipment, represents pursuit of excellence. Jeff even created a modern, spacious man cave/reloading center in his new house (photos below).

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting

Quick-Change Barrel System with Terminus Zeus QC Action

Terminus Zeus QC action scope PRS shooting

This rifle has two pre-fit barrels that work with the Terminus Zeus QC Action for fast and easy barrel swaps. To remove a barrel, you simply release two tension screws on the front of the action and then unscrew the barrel. To swap in a different pre-fit barrel, reverse the process and then tension the screws. The Terminus Zeus is 3-lug receiver with 60° bolt and integral recoil lug. Both the receiver and bolt are DLC-treated. Jeff reports this action is extremely smooth and has met all of his expectations. Some other Zeus features are threaded trigger pins for quick/easy trigger installation, and a roller-tipped cocking piece.

PRS Discipline Offers Fun, New Challenge for Long-Time Shooter

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting

My name is Jeff Cosgrove, I live in Winchester, California and do commercial heating and air conditioning. I have shot for 20+ years but I found my interest in shooting was dwindling over time. I got somewhat bored with shooting paper at 100 yards or plinking cans out in the desert. About 18 months ago I decided I wanted to shoot long range. I picked up a used MPA in .300 Winchester Magnum and started shooting long range with a new buddy. That day I fell in love with guns all over again with more intensity than ever.

How I Got Started in PRS
With that new .300 WM I soon found my reloads were not up to my expectations (high ES/SD), so I purchased all new reloading hardware. One of my purchases was a used Benchsource Annealer. The guy I bought that from asked if I had ever tried PRS and he invited me to check out a match. So I went to a local PRS event as a spectator. I looked at many rigs on the firing line and took notes. By the end of the day I knew this was something I really wanted to do. I then acquired a used chassis rifle that I thought would work well for PRS. I went to a PRS match the following month but shot poorly.

After working with that first PRS rifle, a 6.5 CM with Stiller Tac30 action, MDT chassis, and Proof Carbon-wrapped barrel, I quickly learned that gun did not handle and balance the way I hoped.* It was too light in the front, the ergos were poor, and scope eye relief was not optimal. So I decided to build my own GEN 2 PRS rifle. This is the story of how I put together my new switch-barrel rig that I now use in competition.

PRS Rifle and Gear Selection — Learning What Works

Barrel availability was limited given the current shortages. Luckily I was able to obtain a 6mm Creedmoor pre-fit Bartlein Heavy Varmint 400MODBB from Southern Precision Rifles. The 6mm Creedmoor is notorious for being a barrel burner cartridge so I went with the special 400MODBB metal. Bartlein says that barrel life expectancy is 1.5 to 2 times longer than the standard 416 grade steel. I also purchased a 6.5 Creedmoor pre-fit Benchmark Heavy Palma barrel for training (Source: Straight Jacket Armory). With the Terminus Zeus quick change system I am able to swap from my match barrel to my trainer barrel in just a couple minutes. I loosen two set screws, unthread the barrel, thread the new barrel on, and torque the set screws to 10 inch-pounds. This also affords me caliber options in case I’m in a pinch for ammo. If I have some 6.5 CM loaded up and don’t have time to load 6mm Creedmoor for a match, then I’m covered.

For the trigger, I went with a TriggerTech Diamond Pro curve model. I have Timney, Jewell, and TriggerTech triggers in other rifles. I like them all but I liked the feel of the TT Diamond the best so that is what I used on this build. I set my triggers around 18-20 oz. — I am not a fan of ultra-light trigger pulls.

MPA BA Competition Chassis with Added Weight
I went with an MPA BA Comp chassis with full internal and external weight kit. I also have Gray Ops external weight on the handguard. I had the same chassis on my .300 WinMag and felt very comfortable with it. I took a PR1 class and found that, with a different gun, I had to force a comfortable hand position for proper trigger pull. After that class I grabbed my MPA and my hand fell in to the perfect position. I did not need to hunt or index my hand with the MPA. The built ARCA rail (RAT) lowered the rifles center of gravity more than my old setup with the ARCA rail bolted to the bottom of the handguard. With the current configuration, the rifle weighs in at 24 lbs. and balances three inches in front of the magwell. I now have the flexibility to add, subtract, or move approximately 6 lbs. of weight.

The Attraction of PRS/NRL Practical Competitions
I really enjoy PRS-style shooting because there seems to be a new challenge every time you compete — no matter what. With PRS I am shooting many different positions and ranges with the pressure of a stopwatch. This keeps things interesting for me. I have taken a few training classes to help establish good, clean fundamentals.

Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting
Jeff says it is hard to practice for the many unconventional shooting positions at PRS matches.

My biggest challenges so far have been: 1) building stable shooting positions that I have not practiced enough; 2) proper equipment selection; and 3) time management. Regarding the shooting positions — PRS/NRL is not like F-Class where you can always practice from one position. And it’s hard to practice for unusual set-ups (barriers and positions) you’ve not encountered before. Concerning equipment — you need some experience in the game to determine what really works best for you.

Innovative Zero Compromise Optic — Optimized for the Tactical Game
Zero Compromise ZC517 FFP scope PRS shooting
The scope is a Zero Compromise ZC527 (5-27x56mm FFP) with MPCT2 reticle. Zero Compromise Optic is a relatively new manufacturer, but their scopes are top-flight. The First Focal Plane ZCO has excellent glass that is extremely bright and clear. With a big 36mm main tube, the ZC527 offers 35 Mils Elevation and 21 Mils Windage adjustment. The field of view is 21 feet at 100 yards — one of the widest in the industry. The ZC527 also offers illuminated reticle and locking turrets. When I was at my first PRS match I looked through several different scopes. When I got behind a ZCO scope I knew this was what I wanted — the ZCO scope was super clear, super sharp, with very positive controls.

I put a protective wrap on the scope because with some of our PRS stages it is easy to scratch or dent the scope tube. You don’t want to bang up an expensive scope — the ZC527 retails for $3760.

Reloading for 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor

When starting out with a new cartridge I like to search places like AccurateShooter.com and UltimateReloder.com for popular recipes used by knowledgeable shooters. I am all about paving your own way on certain things but with the consistency, higher cost, and limited supply of components these days I try to stick with the most common loads. I also want to limit barrel wear and get through load development quickly. I don’t want to chase loads for 300 rounds to ultimately land in the same place that so many other people have already found.

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

I start my new barrels with virgin brass and load three rounds at each charge weight in 0.2 grain increments. I put the most popular charge weight (for my chosen bullet) in the middle of my load range and load above and below to find a good node while paying close attention for pressure signs along the way. I use the 6.5 Guys spreadsheet (see below) to help analyze my results. With those results I like to re-test a narrower range with 5-10 rounds each charge weight in 0.2 grain increments. I again use the 6.5 Guys spreadsheet to make a final charge weight selection and then I move on to seating depth. I will load different depths to tighten the groups up.

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

Load Development Using 6.5 Guys Custom Spreadsheet

To hold and analyze my load development data I use the spreadsheet from 65Guys.com. It helps a ton with making a decision on your final load. This Excel spreadsheet works great and makes it simple to analyze your data. You can even copy and paste your chronograph data if your chrono logs on to a SD card.

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

In this 6.5 Guys video Steve provides an overview and tutorial for using the Excel load development analysis model that he has developed. The Excel Load Development Analysis Spreadsheet version 2.0 is FREE. Download from the 6.5 Guys Website.

In this video Steve explains some key statistical concepts for performing load data analysis. He also provides tips and guidance for determining the optimal load for your rifle as you analyze the load data you’ve collected.

New House, New Man Cave/Reloading Room

Jeff recently moved with his family into a great new house. One bonus of this move was that he upgraded from a cramped reloading area to a dedicated “Man Cave” that has ample space for his gun safes, multiple presses, and all his reloading components. Large upper and lower cabinets plus a dedicated “gun closet” provide plenty of storage. Read all about this move in this AccurateShooter Forum Thread.

Here is Jeff’s first reloading area years ago: “My first reloading setup was smashed in my two-bedroom condo so I had a very small bench that was very cluttered. I had to deal with the limited space I had but I made it work. Then in our first house I had a larger bench/cabinet, but it was still not ideal.”

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

Here is the new Man Cave in the new house — very open, spacious, with plenty of storage.

6.5 Guys load development Spreadsheet excel PRS shooting

This animated GIF shows the new Man Cave move-in process start to finish:

new reloading bench 6.5 Creedmoor

(more…)

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June 12th, 2021

Koenig Precision Rifle Match in Colorado This Weekend

Doug Koenig Ruger PRS Precision rifle competition Colorado Cameo grand junction

Many notable shooting matches are being held this month. As Pandemic restrictions recede, competitive shooters are getting back to the range, and that’s definitely a good thing. F-Classers are competing in Tennessee this weekend (see V² Finale Report), and PRS/NRL aces will be competing in Colorado.

The Colorado tactical match is something new — the inaugural Koenig Shooting Sports Precision Rifle Competition. This challenging event takes place this weekend, June 12-13, at the Cameo Shooting and Education Complex outside Grand Junction, Colorado. Doug Koenig will serve as the match director.

Doug Koenig Ruger PRS Precision rifle competition Colorado Cameo grand junction

This two-day event is expected to attract some of the best precision rifle competitors in the nation, all vying for points to earn an exclusive spot at the year-end PRS Pro Series Finale. Utilizing the picturesque landscape and natural terrain props found at the Cameo Shooting Complex, each competitor’s skills will be put to the test while engaging an assortment of steel, reactive, and automated moving targets at distances from 300 to over 1000 yards.

“I want to thank Ruger not only for their support but also for their continued commitment to this sport,” commented Koenig. “The introduction of the Ruger Precision Rifle disrupted the world of PRS by making it a much more affordable discipline to participate in, so it is only fitting that they are the presenting sponsor of this exciting event.”

Doug Koenig Ruger PRS Precision rifle competition Colorado Cameo grand junction

Doug Koenig and the Ruger Precision Rifle
“Koenig” (or König) means “king” in German. That is indeed appropriate for Doug Koenig, 19-Time Bianchi Cup winner, who is now starting to conquer the rifle world as well. Koenig, considered by many to be the best action pistol shooter on the planet, proved he’s an ace with rifles too, as he has had multiple PRS Production Division victories. Koenig, Captain of Team Ruger, shoots a Ruger Precision Rifle (RPR), chambered in 6mm Creedmoor. Notably, Production Division limits rifles to $2000.00 for the gun ($4000.00 overall with scope). You can buy an RPR for around $1350.00 typically ($1320.99 at KyGunCo).

In this video, Gavin Gear Shows How to Accurize a Ruger Precision Rifle:

This Interesting Cut-Away Animation Shows How the Ruger Precision Rifle Functions:

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February 14th, 2021

Sunday GunDay: 5 lb. Titanium-Action Carbon-Stock Hunting Rifle

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock
Here is Tom Mousel with Whitetail taken with his ultra-light hunting rifle fitted with 6mm Creedmoor Lilja barrel. Friend Cody (right) actually took the shot. This gun has a second barrel in 6.5 Creedmoor.

“Light is Right” when it comes to carrying deer rifles long distances in the backcountry. A lighter rifle DOES make a difference when you’re hiking many miles and carrying other gear including binoculars, laser rangefinders, food/water, and packs. And then, if you are successful, you’ll be carrying out game meat, so a lighter rifle translates to a lighter overall load.

When Forum member Tom Mousel (a top 1000-yard competitor) considered a new hunting rifle, he wanted a very light-weight rig. What he got was a low mass masterpiece — an ultra-accurate, five-pound hunting rifle. Not only does this twin-barrel rifle, as built by Alex Wheeler, come in under five pounds (before optics), but it has produced some quarter-MOA 3-shot groups at 1000 yards. The 6mm Creedmoor version of this rifle has demonstrated truly stellar accuracy at long range. The 6.5 Creedmoor barrel also shoots well and packs more punch for hunting use.

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock

Ultra-Light Rifle Specifications:
Pierce Engineering 100% Titanium action — Titanium Receiver, Bolt, Lug
Manners Composite Stocks UC Carbon Fiber Stock
Barrel ONE: Lilja 6mm 21″ 1:7″-twist 3-groove, No. 1 Contour, Chambered 6mm Creedmoor
Barrel TWO: Rock Creek 6.5mm 21″ 1:8″-twist, No. 2 Contour, Chambered 6.5 Creedmoor
Leupold Mark AR 4-12x40mm scope in Talley Rings
Jewell Trigger

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock
CLICK HERE to view full-screen large version of photo.

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock

Here is Tom’s rifle weighing in at 4 pounds, 14 ounces with 21″ Lilja #1 contour 6mm barrel. Tom says: “Here’s the rifle with full Titanium action, bolt, and lug, in a Tom Manners 17 oz. carbon fiber stock. It’s exactly one pound heavier fitted with my Leupold Mark AR 4-12x40mm scope in Talley rings.”

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock

Tom has two barrels for the rifle, one chambered for 6.5 Creedmoor and the other for 6mm Creedmoor. Tom reports: “The 6.5mm is a bit lighter being fluted. But I won’t be switching back now that I’ve shot the 6mm version. Neither has too much recoil, but the 6mm CM just kills the 6.5mm at distance for groups.”

Tom tells us: “What I like about this rifle is there were no corners cut to make it light. On some other ultra-lights, the fore-end has no strength or they are cut down really short. This is a full-sized stock, pillar-bedded with aluminum-filled epoxy and free-floated barrel. The ignition is set up with a TON of firing pin fall to function in the coldest temps.”

Gunsmith Alex Wheeler of Wheeler Accuracy is pleased with how this project turned out: “Tom has shot a bunch of sub-5″ groups and a couple one-inchers back-to-back at 1K. He has the Berger 115gr VLD going about 3050 fps.” Tom noted the 6mm barrel picked up about 50-60 FPS after the first 50 rounds. He shoots 115gr Berger VLDs with CCI 450s and Reloder 16, with the Bergers about .005″-.008″ in the lands.

Groups at 1000 Yards with 6mm Creedmoor Barrel, 115gr Bergers

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock
Here are two of Tom’s 1000-yard targets. This is with the 6mm Creedmoor barrel shooting 115gr Berger VLDs pushed by Alliant Reloder 16 at about 3050 FPS. The average of the two groups is 0.246 MOA. Pretty amazing for an ultra-light rifle shot off a bipod. Tom acknowledges that he can’t do this every day. He says that “shooting 871 yards at my home range, the rifle typically shoots 4″ to 5″ 3-shot groups”.

Q & A with Tom Mousel About his Ultra-Light Hunting Rifle

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stockQ: Why did you choose to build this rig?
Tom: I just wanted to do it to see how light we could build an accurate, good-shooting rifle.

Q: What are your favorite things about the rifle, and is there anything you would change?
Tom: Definitely the light weight, and the overall size — it has a pretty short barrel (21″), so it’s just handy. I wouldn’t change anything about the rifle, now that I have the Titanium bolt. When I bought the action originally it had the steel bolt.

Q: How does this rifle handle?
Tom: It points well considering it is a light rifle. The 6mm Creedmoor version has very little recoil. On a good bipod I can sight in at 1000 without a spotter.

Q: What are your favorite accessories?
I use a Solo Hntr Mtn Lite stretchy cover. You can see it in the photo at right showing me on a hunt. I like this because you can roll it up like a sock and and use it for a rear support.

Q: Why did you choose Alliant Reloder 16 powder?
Tom: Lonnie Anderson, a fellow Deep Creek shooter, did a 6mm Creedmoor and he said RL16 was absolutely the most accurate. We have also found that Reloder 16 is really consistent on velocities through the seasons — from 90 above to teens below zero.

Q: Could this ultra-light set-up work for a bigger caliber also?
Tom: I’ve tried bigger calibers, but I’ve never been satisfied with the consistency of the groups. There’s a cut-off — there’s too much torque and recoil. We see a limit — you don’t want “too much gun” for the platform. Even here, the 6.5 barrel just doesn’t shoot as well as the 6mm.

Q: What advice do you have for hunters considering ultra-light rifles?
Tom: Be careful about falling in love with ballistics and trying to build too much bang for too small a platform. If I built a 7mm WSM for example, I’d want to rifle to weigh at least two pounds more.

Full Titanium Action from Pierce Engineering
This photo shows the Pierce Engineering Titanium Featherweight short action featuring Titanium (Ti) receiver, Ti bolt, and Ti lug. This unit is a mere 15.90 ounces complete. (NOTE: with Titanium body and STEEL bolt the weight is 18.5 ounces). The long action version is 17.4 ounces for the complete Titanium action with Ti bolt and Ti lug.

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock

Jud at Pierce Engineering tells us: “Both the Ti action body and Ti bolt are DLC-coated. This action also has an anti-bind rail for added smoothness and ease of functioning. This really is one of the lightest actions on the market. If you’re looking into building an ultra-light rifle I would seriously check one out! We make these with the highest level of detail, pride, and machining tolerances. They’re just sweet actions… and our Ti Featherweight short action is roughly half the weight of a Remington Model 7. So there’s a significant weight savings with the Pierce Ti Featherweight over a Model 7.”

Tom Mousel 6mm 6.5mm Creedmoor deer hunting rifle Pierce engineering Titanium Ti action Lilja Barrel Manners composite Carbon Fiber stock

Owner Profile — Tom Mousel, Hunter AND Long-Range Benchrest Ace
Tom Mousel knows a few things about accurate rifles. He is a top 1000-yard competitor at IBS matches and at the Deep Creek range near Missoula, Montana. In 2016 Tom set a remarkable 6-match Light Gun Group World Record, with a 2.9540″ group size Aggregate for SIX matches. And a year later, in 2017, Mousel set a 10-Match Heavy Gun World Record with a 5.3376″ Aggregate. NOTE: that is for TEN-shot groups in Heavy Gun. That’s an average ten-shot group under 6 inches for 10 matches! Over the past decade, Tom has remained at the top of the 1000-yard game, with many match wins at Deep Creek and other ranges.

Tom Mousel 1000-yard
Tom Mousel 1000-yard

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January 30th, 2021

6.5 Creedmoor Cartridge Load Data from Sierra Bullets

Sierra Load Data 6.5 Creedmoor

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.

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.

Two More Great 6.5 Creedmoor Reloading Resouces

Want More 6.5 Creedmoor Load Info? View Starline’s 6.5 Creedmoor Guide by Gavin Gear:

Download full 6.5 Creedmoor Guide at StarlineBrass.com.

PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey
The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

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December 11th, 2020

New Nosler Reloading Guide #9 — Data for 101 Cartridge Types

Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual

Nosler has just released the Nosler Reloading Guide #9, the latest in a respected series of hardback Nosler load manuals. This 800-page guide covers 101 cartridge types. New in this edition you’ll find the popular 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, and 7.62×39, along with 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 27 Nosler and 33 Nosler. This new guide draws from thousands of hours in the Nosler Ballistic Lab, along with the experience of many respected experts.

The book is available right now for $24.99 at Grafs.com. In addition, much of the book’s latest load data is available for free on the Nosler.com online LOAD DATA Center. But to get ALL the data, PLUS the technical article, you’ll need to buy the book.

The Nosler Reloading Guide 9 Reloading Manual provides load data for 101 rifle and handgun cartridges with hundreds of new powder additions. A comprehensive data set for today’s reloader, this manual is current with every bullet that Nosler offers through 2020 from 17 caliber up to 458 caliber in the rifle section and 9mm up to 45 caliber in the handgun section. Nine new cartridges were added to this manual. These include: 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, 27 Nosler, 7.62×39 and 33 Nosler. Also new for the Nosler Reloading Guide #9 are cartridge introductions written by veteran outdoor writers and industry tech experts. The 800-page book also has helpful “how-to” sections such as “Getting Ready to Reload”.

Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual
Nosler reloading guide number 9 9th edition handbook book load data manual

Q. Why Buy a Book when Load Data is Available Online from Powder Makers?

There are good, solid reasons to buy print-format loading guides produced by bullet-makers. If you go to the Hodgdon online Reloading Data Center you’ll only find loads with Hodgdon, IMR, and Winchester powders — the key brands they sell. In a book such as this Nosler #9 or the Sierra Reloading Manual, you will find loads with a much wider selection of powders including Vihtavuori, Alliant, Accurate, Norma, Ramshot, and other brands. You won’t find a Reloder 16 or VV N140 load on Hodgdon’s website.

In addition, it is handy to have loads in a print edition which is easy to access on your load bench. You don’t need a computer or an internet connection. And using a book is often faster than a web interface when quickly scanning through a variety of bullet choices for a cartridge.

Along with the new Nosler #9 Manual, here are four other recommended Reloading Manuals:

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November 24th, 2020

6mm Creedmoor Load Data from Sierra Bullets + BONUS

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets
NOTE: The 6mm Creedmoor now does have an official SAAMI specification. It is no longer just a wildcat.

CLICK HERE for Sierra Bullets 6mm Creedmoor LOAD DATA PDF »

Sierra Bullets Load Data 6mm Creedmoor reloading tips

Sierra Bullets has published load data for the 6mm Creedmoor cartridge, a necked-down version of the popular 6.5 Creedmoor. Sierra has released very comprehensive 6mm Creedmoor load data, covering fifteen (15) different bullets from 55 to 110 grains. NOTE: Hornady-brand brass was used for Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor load tests, not the newer, stronger Lapua 6.5 CM brass with small primer pockets. Hand-loaders using Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor brass necked to 6mm may have to adjust their loads.

Sierra writes: “As soon as the 6.5 Creedmoor was released in 2007, a 6mm version was being envisioned. After the 6mm Creedmoor demonstrated its worth at 1000 yards it began to catch the attention of Precision Rifle Series (PRS) competitors. The 6mm Creedmoor is a great fit for those looking for an AR platform-friendly cartridge. It delivers velocities very similar to the .243 Win and yet fits the AR10 magazine length[.] The 30-degree shoulder makes this a very efficient case and helps prolong case life as well. The 6mm Creedmoor works well with powders such as H4350, [RE-16], RE-17, and Ramshot Hunter for heavier long-range bullet weights. Slightly faster powders such as RE-15, Win 760, and Vihtavuori N540 work well with lighter weight bullets.”

Sierra Bullets Tested for 6mm Creedmoor Load Data
55gr BlitzKing (#1502)
60gr HP (#1500)
70gr HPBT (#1505)
70gr BlitzKing (#1507)
75gr HP (#1510)
80gr SBT (#1515)
85gr Spitzer (#1520)
85gr HPBT (#1530)
90gr FMJBT (#1535)
95gr HPBT (#1537)
95gr TMK (#7295)
100gr Spitzer (#1540)
100gr SBT (#1560)
107gr HPBT (#1570)
110gr HPBT (#1575)

In developing its 6mm Creedmoor load data, Sierra tested a very wide selection of propellants, two dozen overall. For the smaller bullets, fast-burning powders such as Benchmark, H4895, and CFE223 were tested. For the heavier 100+ grain bullets, Sierra tested a selection of medium-burn-rate powders including H4350, Reloder 16, Reloder 17, Varget, and Superformance. Sierra did a very thorough job. We know this information will be welcomed by 6mm Creedmoor shooters.

Don’t know what powder to try first? For the 107-110 grain bullets, if you want best accuracy and low ES/SD, our Forum members recommend Alliant Reloder 16 and Hodgdon H4350. If you are seeking max velocity with the 110-grainer, look at Hodgdon Superformance and Reloder 19.

Here are Sierra’s 6mm Creedmoor Load Data Charts for 90-95 grain bullets plus the 107gr MK and 110gr MK. There are five other tables for other bullet types.

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets

6mm Creedmoor 6.5 Creedmoor load data Sierra Bullets


BONUS: PRB 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor Load Survey

The Precision Rifle Blog compiled Load Data from PRS Competitors, for both 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Creedmoor. This is a good place to start. PRB surveyed the match loads for “173 of the top-ranked precision rifle shooters in the country”. One cautionary note: These PRS guys may be loading fairly hot, so work up gradually, 0.3 grains at a time. CLICK HERE.

PRB precision rifle blog pet loads what pros use 6.5 Creedmoor 6mm CM

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