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Old July 29, 2016, 10:16 PM   #1
gmarr
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6.8 SPC, did it go away?

I haven't seen or heard much on the 6.8 SPC lately. It seems to never really have caught on. I saw a Mini 14 in this caliber at a recent gun show and it sold in less time than I could get my checkbook from my car. As for an AR, I haven't seen one. So what happened? I always liked the idea but I don't reload and don't want to get into a 'niche' caliber.
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Old July 29, 2016, 10:48 PM   #2
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It seems to never really have caught on.
I think you just aren't paying attention. It is a hugely popular AR caliber and is doing quite well.
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Old July 29, 2016, 10:51 PM   #3
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I like the idea of it too. Was suppose to replace/address 5.56 difficiencies but that didn't seem to happen. If its popular I have yet to see one but I am not that popular either. I would like to shoot one.

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Old July 30, 2016, 12:24 AM   #4
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The only real problem with 6.8spc is that it's not profitable enough for the ammo manufacturers to make enough ammo. Every time Federal runs American Eagle or XM68GD they sell out pretty much instantly. Same with S&B. Hornady ammo is always available, but costs more. Harrison at AR15performance sells barrels as fast as he can make them too.
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Old July 30, 2016, 01:49 AM   #5
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I never have a hard time finding any 6.8 ammo, I can find it online or at Wally Mart most of the time.

I think those that are in the "know" on AR's and calibers are spreading the word as they meet people, and their friends tell their friends and so on, not to mention the few articles in the popular gun rags that put the word out too.

The 6.8 is a significant improvement over the 5.56 and for hunting, it counts for something.
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Old July 30, 2016, 07:21 AM   #6
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"I never have a hard time finding any 6.8 ammo, I can find it online or at Wally Mart most of the time."

It's not that ammo is hard to find but at what price? Local Wallie has ammo for 223,243,270,308,& 30/06. Anything else is a lucky happenstance.
I got into 6.8 about a year late and missed the really cheap ammo but have enough considering it's a hunting rifle not a battle rattle bullet hose.
I think it does have merit within reason. It's NOT a 300 yard deer round but possibly far better than .223/300 @ 100-150-we'll find out in November. I'm hoping for slightly less recoil than the 7,62x39 with better ballistic performance.
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Old July 30, 2016, 07:55 AM   #7
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I got into it about a year early and sold mine. I used it on deer once. I often think about putting a bolt action together. I don't know, I see ammo for sale all the time. When I started with mine there was almost nothing.
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Old July 30, 2016, 09:25 AM   #8
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The 6.8 is here to stay.

The 6.8SPCII is a great hunting rifle. I carry a Stag Arms upper with my RRA 5.56 and always have both calibers available. It's flat shooting, hard hitting and the coyotes just hate them. Barrett sells ammo for the 6.8 as do all major manufacturers. It's murder on song dogs out to 350 yards, and a bit more. It will take down a hog at closer ranges, but I do not consider it a deer rifle. For deer the venerable .308 is the perfect round IMHO. If you use the 6.8 within its capabilities it is a joy to shoot. It has softer recoil than the 7.62x.39 and is more accurate. The recoil to me isn't much more than the 5.56 62+ grain ammo. As for cost. I get tired of going to the range and watching guys spray and pray with their AR15s and AKs. It proves nothing other than they can waste a lot of ammo. I always shoot for accuracy with my AR15 and my Czech built CZ VZ58. I shoot for accuracy with every firearm I own. I build or buy firearms for accuracy. You want a 6.8SPCII get one. They are here to stay. With a good scope it is a great predator rifle.

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Old July 30, 2016, 09:35 AM   #9
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ARs in 6.8 are popular around here. I always recommend buying a reloading set-up to every new shooter, but I press that issue a bit harder with the 6.8. Brass is easily available and so are appropriate powders and any bullet of .277 diameter from 85 grains to 130 work well.

I build 2 of them for 2 different customers in the last few years that had be get the reloading equipment with the parts, so when it was done they got the rifle with the ammo and the ability to load their own all at one time.

I bought them both a Lee Hand Press and a set of Lee dies which come with the shell holder and the powder scoop. No need for a powder measure or scale if you use this set-up. I added a Lee case trimmer.

One of these 2 was a woman who wanted to hunt with her husband, but is only 5' 1" and weighs 92 pounds. The AR is the ideal hunting rifle for such small people in that the recoil is very light and the ballistics are about the same as the original 257 Roberts loads from the 1970s and before (that was the load that made the Roberts famous) The carbine shoots about MOA with her loads so there is nothing to complain about. Heck---- I weigh 187 pounds and I think these ARs in 6.8 are ideal for me too.
Here is a picture of the chest of an antelope with the exit wound from my 6.8 AR rifle. That's my fist next to it to show something for scale. This is fairly typical of the kind of wounds it produces in deer and antelope, and yet the penetration has been very very good too.



I have not heard from the man in a while, but that little lady just loves her AR and she tells me about her "adventures" with it every time I see her.
She has killed several deer and some antelope with is, and her husband tells me she is a great threat to coyotes now, and had kills a LOT of them with her little 6.8 carbine.

Anyway, the 6.8 is alive and well in central Wyoming. I know of about 15 shooters within 100 miles of me that use them. But the above posters are correct about ammo prices, so loading your own is a very good idea if you want to shoot a 6.8.

Last edited by Wyosmith; July 30, 2016 at 09:44 AM.
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Old July 30, 2016, 05:05 PM   #10
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They have their own forum which is pretty active.

It has kind of fallen into the "why is this cartridge better?" hole. Between .22lr, 5.56, 300Blk, 6.5G, .308 and .338L (for the richly dedicated) you have a solution to all of your AR needs. Everything else you need to make an argument for.

If the ammo were cheaper or offered some kind of advantage over the above than it would probably do more. Being known as "once, years ago, a top choice by some operators to maybe replace the 5.56" is not much of a claim to fame.
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Old July 30, 2016, 11:07 PM   #11
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I was always a 6.5 guy, but I heard rumors about bolts cracking with the Grendel chambered in an AR set up. I used a .223 bolt for my 6.8 and took some metal out. It definitely kills deer sized animals. I am still trying to figure out what the .300 Blackout does better than a 7.62x39.
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Old July 31, 2016, 09:16 AM   #12
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My 6.8 is alive and kicking........

IMHO, with all things considered, its the best all around AR15 caliber on deer and pig up to and including 300 yard shots

The 6.5 is very close, but when I purchased the 6.8, the 6.5 still had problems in availability

I use the Hornady SST 120g that is devastating
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Old July 31, 2016, 09:34 AM   #13
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^^^To the above post^^^ IMO the best all around AR-15 cartridge for 0-300 yard shots is the almost forgotten 30 Remington AR. Hands down beats every other AR-15 cartridge in regards to hunting.

However my personal favorite is an even lesser known wildcat known as the 7mm Valkyrie. It matches factory 7mm-08 ammo in the AR-15 platform and the same barrel length.
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Old July 31, 2016, 11:12 AM   #14
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The only real problem with 6.8spc is that it's not profitable enough for the ammo manufacturers to make enough ammo. Every time Federal runs American Eagle or XM68GD they sell out pretty much instantly. Same with S&B. Hornady ammo is always available, but costs more.
I am not sure where you are trying to find ammo, but there is plenty around...

http://ammoseek.com/ammo/6.8mm-remington?aumph=tp6ny
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Old July 31, 2016, 11:27 AM   #15
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I got into it about a year early and sold mine. I used it on deer once. I often think about putting a bolt action together. I don't know, I see ammo for sale all the time. When I started with mine there was almost nothing.
I got into 6.8 too early and bought one of Stag's early uppers--it was pretty mediocre. If you look at the propellants, case capacity etc it's probably one of the most potent rifle cartridges that has been developed for a "conventional" AR15. I got rid of my stag long ago--but kept my stash of cases and reloading components (thereby giving me the excuse to build another one day). I've pretty much made my mind up on a Wilson Combat 18" recon SS barrel when the time comes for a new 6.8 build.
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Old July 31, 2016, 01:31 PM   #16
Old Bill Dibble
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I am still trying to figure out what the .300 Blackout does better than a 7.62x39.
Reliably feed in a standard AR, especially suppressed. Offer a huge range of inexpensive bullet types for different roles.
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Old July 31, 2016, 01:43 PM   #17
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I am still trying to figure out what the .300 Blackout does better than a 7.62x39.
Easy...almost everything. : )
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Old August 1, 2016, 10:15 PM   #18
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I am still trying to figure out what the .300 Blackout does better than a 7.62x39.
I just bought a 300 BLK AR. It does 3 things better - feed reliably from the AR platform, shoot heavy bullets (200-ish grains and up) suppressed and at sub-sonic speeds and have a plethora of bullets for the reloader to load with. (7.62x39 uses a .311" bullet while the 300 BLK shoots a .308" bullet). The 7.62x39 is much cheaper to shoot. Just about everything else between the two cartridges is even.

But to stay on topic of the OP, I too haven't seen much about 6.8 lately. I don't doubt the cartridge is still loved by its users, but I think the phase of initial market hype is over. I do think it'll stick around for some time, though.
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Old August 2, 2016, 01:44 AM   #19
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I found the 6.8 case to be a very good design in terms of reliable feed and cycling in a standard AR (better than a grendel, for example) and also powder capacity--the only lack being a limitation of the length of the bullets you can use that otherwise would need to be jammed down into the case. I too believe the 6.8--and it's wildcat spawn--will be around for quite some time. I personally think the real issue limiting it's popularity is simply the caliber--if it weren't for the 270 win I wonder if it would even exist at all.
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Old August 2, 2016, 08:50 AM   #20
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With the various types of controlled expansion/weight retentive bullets available, I don't see the bullet weight being as much an issue as length. This is offset by the numerous high energy powders available which require less case capacity for similar performance.
I've stocked up on 90 grain controlled expansion ammo after finding it's fairly accurate in my mongrel AR. My major interest is a moderate weight, low recoil, medium range deer rifle for the Grandkids (and myself if my joint problems get worse).
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Old August 2, 2016, 10:56 AM   #21
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I hope it doesn't go away; it's helping the availability of its parent case - the .30 Remington, which my Model 8 chambers.

The 6.8 looks like a fairly nice cartridge, though. If I hadn't already settled on 6.5 Grendel I would consider a 6.8.
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Old August 2, 2016, 12:23 PM   #22
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If all the other calibers for the AR15 platform had not come along, it would be more popular. But there are a ton of calibers competing for the same niche market. .22LR, .223 and .300BO are the three dominant ones I see, but there are a basket full of decent cartridges based on the .223 parent case, some large bore thumpers, etc. all competing for a pretty small market segment. Now AR9s are all the rage with momentum gaining.
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Old August 2, 2016, 03:55 PM   #23
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6.8 is still around but all the fanboys got quiet when the .300bo became more popular.
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Old August 2, 2016, 09:08 PM   #24
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"--if it weren't for the .270 win I wonder if it would even exist at all". Funny you should say that. For years I have heard guys say "If it it were not for a certain gun writer, the .270 probably would not even exist." The AR style rifles are like the .45 auto and M-1 carbine years ago. You see the craziest stuff being done to them just to sell more add ons or just to see what happens.
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Old August 3, 2016, 02:56 AM   #25
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You see the craziest stuff being done to them just to sell more add ons or just to see what happens.
Yup--you got me pegged right there. lol

I do load .277 for 270 win and there is no question in my mind that it is a classic and functional cartridge that enjoys deserved popularity. I've built quite a few AR caliber spin-offs--the .277 in the 6.8 is actually one of the better "hybrids" IMO--it throws a hefty bullet (compared to 5.56) and "reasonable" velocities to make it quite potent for closer ranges. My experience has been that--except for the 300 BO--it is also one of the most reliable feeding and cycling AR cartridges. I like the grendel too--but it's a finicky configuration in my experience that demands precision adjustments for each load configuration.
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