View Full Version : 6.5-284 on deer size game

November 17, 2004, 07:58 AM
I shot a white tail deer last evening with the Remington Model Seven in 6.5-284 that I had built for my son. This rifle has been featured in several posts on these boards if you are interested in its features. Suffice to say it has a 20 inch custom barrel and pushes the fine 129 grain Hornady SP to 2950 FPS with sub MOA accuracy.
I was hunting an area of steep foot hills covered in laurel and hardwood forest laced with deep open creek valleys growing in honeysuckle and biars. Our land is centered around a huge creek that winds thru thousands of acres of logging cut-overs in various stages of growing back, ideal deer country.
About 4:00 I caught sight of a doe moving fast thru the hardwoods on the hill next to mine. I was in a tree stand overlooking a creek bottom that contains a deer highway. From my stand I saw her cutting across the next hill top about 175 yards away. As I watched her I spotted a deer following. Then I saw a glint of polished antler on his head. If he had continued moving at that pace he would not have offered a shot. However, he paused with his head behind one tree and his rump behind another. All I could see was a front shoulder between two trees at around 175 yards! (That, my friends is why MOA accuracy is important) I knew he had horns so I settled the Model Seven on the rifle rest of my stand's rail and squeezed off a shot.
At the shot the buck just fell over!! It was if he had been pushed over! I have been practicing "aim small, miss small" so I had been looking at the point of his shoulder closest to me when I fired. As he fell over he slid down the other side of the hill but never moved! I climbed down and walked/climbed over to where he was laying. The bullet had struck EXACTLY where I was aiming. I briefly felt his shoulders and both were broken! No exit wound but I could feel the bullet under the skin on the ofside shoulder.
The deer weighed out to 157 lbs field dressed. When I skinned him out I found the 129 grain SP had entered the closer shoulder, fractured the humeral head, expanded to around .50 caliber, devestated the neck base with a huge .50++ hole and hydrostatic shock, blood, bruising, and continued on to shatter the off side shoulder into a blood soup mess. Sharp chunks of the off side humeral head were blown into the lungs, neck base and muscle tissue. The perfectly mushroomed bullet was found just under the skin on the offside shoulder. Nearly perfect performance. I have no doubt the bullet would have exited if not for the job of shattering both humeral heads. This performance is nearly identical to .270 and heavy bullet 25-06 hits I have made on similar size game at that distance.
Early conclusions indicate that perforance will be a little better than a hot loaded 6.5x55 with the same bullet (which is excellent). I think, however, I would opt for a semi-premium 140 grain bullet if the game was much larger, like a mule deer, black bear, hog, or elk especially if I plan on breaking down shoulders ect.
The only problem now is that this super sweet little 20 inch Custom Model Seven with .270 ballistics is going to be hard to give up. I may have to start building another one......for me!

November 17, 2004, 05:36 PM
Congradulations! Sounds like a quick, humane kill, though I would have aimed an inch behind the shoulders to save the meat. Your description of your rifle sounds an awful lot like a .257 Roberts. What pressure do you load it to?

November 17, 2004, 06:39 PM
Not too surprising to me-after all, you are putting a 30-06 powder charge behind a .264 cal bullet. I you had been using something like a 140 grain partition, I'm not sure you would have found that bullet.

November 17, 2004, 08:29 PM
That sounds a lot like what my 284 does, only I've never recovered a bullet from anything smaller than an adult elk.

The 270, 280, 284, 30-06 and all incarnations similar in power are superb hunting calibers for game up to elk and large bears.

November 17, 2004, 09:03 PM
I replied to this thread at work - it's got 4 or 5 replies when I log onto this thread from work, including mine. But right now, from my home computer, there's only 3 replies (this one will be the 4th), and mine's not included. ROS, you also replied to your own thread after I did, making reference to some things that I said, and I seee all this when I log on from work, but as you can see, there's no reply after your initial one by you here right now - only MeekNMild's, David's, and HSmith's. Or, OTOH, maybe you can't see what I'm talking about. This is surely a *first*. Twilight zone....

November 26, 2004, 08:39 AM
Well the saga of the 6.5-284 Model Seven continues. When my son saw what "his rifle" had done to that buck he started practicing holding the unloaded rifle and snap shooting (empty) it at targets in our yard. He was generally getting used to its weight and feel in preperation for his first deer kill with a modern rifle. His mother refuses to let him hunt from a tree stand so we have to use our imaginations to create ground blinds and use the very hilly terrain on our property to our advantage. Thanksgiving day we went out for the afternoon hunt. We did some still hunting as the leaves were sopping wet after an all night rain. After about two hours of moving slowly along a major creek/young river we found an area were two of the extremely steep hills meet at a notch or small pass area. Sure enough there was a major deer run that crossed the creek here and the deer were using the notch between the hills to travel rather than climb the steeper rocky hill side.
I set him up about half way up one of the hills, on the ground, with a huge hardwood stump for cover and to serve as a rifle rest. About one hour before dark two does came thru and just like a pro he propped his foot against the stump and rested the Model Seven on his knee. I saw him turn the power ring on the Vari X III to 4X and settle down to shoot. After what seemed like an eternity the 6.5-284 spoke and the doe responded by hitting the ground much like the buck described above. She fell without a twitch as if hit by hot lighting.
After the obigitory hugs and congratulations on a fine 85 to 100 yard shot I had to wade the creek to get my 11 year old son's prize. About half way back with the doe I stepped in a hole and both my boots filled with liquid ice water, very nice! Inspection revealed he had hit her in the front shoulder that was facing to him. The Hornady 129 grain traveled thru her shoulder, blew a .60++ hole in her neck base, and exited just behind her off side shoulder. The exit wound was reminiscant on those produced by a 45-70. When we skinned her out there was massive trauma to her neck base, upper lungs and she was bruised all the way back to the diaphram, instant death and slamification. I commented on how she went down as we were dragging her out. I told my son it was like hot lighting hit her. Just then he held out his deer rifle and said "Well now you have got a name Hot Lighting!"

November 26, 2004, 10:13 AM
Congratulations to both you and your son. Both have nice deer, and well taken.
There is much to be said for a custom rifle. I have several that I have built up to satisfy what I want in a rifle. Your 6.5/.285 sounds like a good one.

November 26, 2004, 10:40 AM
Great story and a nice rifle.
I am amazed at what I once considered small rifles can do in the way of performance.