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Old March 8, 2020, 11:32 AM   #1
kilotanker22
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6.5 PRC Velocities

Hello all,

Recently purchased a 6.5 prc and I am getting close to finishing load development. My question here is simply about performance on game at listed velocities or close to them. I have a load that shoots like .3 MOA with the 140 ELD bullet, at an average velocity of 3030. I have another load with the ELD-X 143 grain bullet at 3130 fps. Although this is about a 1.25 moa load. I am sure that I can close up that group a little bit by playing with seating depth.

I guess my question is for the guys who have a 6.5 prc or 264 win mag or a 6.5x284 norma. And who have taken game with those calibers at similar velocities. How was performance on game? Did you find that one bullet or another worked better at the higher velocities? I am considering leaning into a bonded bullet such as the Speer gold dot although I feel like the ELD and the ELD-X are fine bullets for hunting.

I prefer a bullet that enters and dumps nearly all of it's energy into an animal. How far the bullet buries into the ground on the other side doesn't do much for how humane a kill is. It is my opinion that as a hunter when I take a life. It is my responsibility to make sure death comes as quickly as possible. If I have no exit wound thats ok with me. It just means that all the energy was expended inside the animal.
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Old March 8, 2020, 12:47 PM   #2
std7mag
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My opinion would be 2 options.
From experience the Berger VLD Hunting does exactly what your describing, and as advertized.
Goes in 1-3 inches and comes apart. MASSIVE internal damage!
The caveat, for the 140gr Berger VLD-H would be starting load development from scratch.
They are very seating depth finnicky. My rifles tend to like 0.005" off the lands.
I've heard others rifles have liked 0.090" off the lands.
If it's up close & personal to the lands, you have to watch your pressures.

The other option would be Cutting Edge Bullets.
A monolithic bullet that sheds 4-8 petals for again, massive internal damage, then the sharp edged base keeps cutting through.
They are local to you & me being in Kylertown, PA. (Off of rt 53 north of Philipsburg)
The caveat with them is price (individually machined, and not cheap), and you have to match bullet weight to you rifle twist rate.
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Old March 8, 2020, 12:53 PM   #3
kilotanker22
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I have considered the Berger bullets. Price is why I have chosen the Hornady bullets this far.

I am noticing that the ELD bullets shoot very very well. In both my 6.5 mm rifles. If I can find the Berger's on sale I may try them
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Old March 8, 2020, 12:56 PM   #4
T. O'Heir
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An average velocity of 3030 is an over Max load according to Hodgdon. You'll note that Hodgdon used a 24", 1 in 8, barrel. Hornady used a 26", 1 in 8, barrel. Hornady also tested powders Hodgdon did not. The 2" of barrel will account for the velocities.
Anyway, the 3 grain difference won't matter. You'd be using the same data. No game animal will know or care what bullet killed it.
Use the load that gives the best accuracy. Velocity is not as important.
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Old March 8, 2020, 01:30 PM   #5
kilotanker22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T. O'Heir View Post
An average velocity of 3030 is an over Max load according to Hodgdon. You'll note that Hodgdon used a 24", 1 in 8, barrel. Hornady used a 26", 1 in 8, barrel. Hornady also tested powders Hodgdon did not. The 2" of barrel will account for the velocities.
Anyway, the 3 grain difference won't matter. You'd be using the same data. No game animal will know or care what bullet killed it.
Use the load that gives the best accuracy. Velocity is not as important.
T. O'Heir,

As you stated Hornady uses different powders than Hodgdon. I am using Reloder 26. The load with 3030 fps avg speed was right at Hornady's max charge of 57 grains. I worked up to the charge weights carefully. I am also seated further out of the case and I am only partially resized. The way I have sized the cases and at the depth the bullets are seated I increased the case capacity by almost 3 grains as opposed to a fully resized case. All across Hornady's Load data I am around 100 fps slower. Which I agree with you is due to the 2" longer barrel than I have.

While it is true that the load with 3030 fps average speed certainly shoots better, the reason I consider shooting the higher velocity, hotter load is for several reasons.
Energy on target, a little flatter shooting and even though it does not shoot as well as the slower load it shoots well enough. Even so with the slower load I know that I am getting 140 fps faster than I was getting with the factory loads.

The other thing is that the 140 ELD-M bullet shoots better in both of my rifles. With both loads velocity spread and standard deviation numbers are very tight
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Old March 8, 2020, 03:15 PM   #6
reynolds357
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kilotanker22 View Post
Hello all,

Recently purchased a 6.5 prc and I am getting close to finishing load development. My question here is simply about performance on game at listed velocities or close to them. I have a load that shoots like .3 MOA with the 140 ELD bullet, at an average velocity of 3030. I have another load with the ELD-X 143 grain bullet at 3130 fps. Although this is about a 1.25 moa load. I am sure that I can close up that group a little bit by playing with seating depth.

I guess my question is for the guys who have a 6.5 prc or 264 win mag or a 6.5x284 norma. And who have taken game with those calibers at similar velocities. How was performance on game? Did you find that one bullet or another worked better at the higher velocities? I am considering leaning into a bonded bullet such as the Speer gold dot although I feel like the ELD and the ELD-X are fine bullets for hunting.

I prefer a bullet that enters and dumps nearly all of it's energy into an animal. How far the bullet buries into the ground on the other side doesn't do much for how humane a kill is. It is my opinion that as a hunter when I take a life. It is my responsibility to make sure death comes as quickly as possible. If I have no exit wound thats ok with me. It just means that all the energy was expended inside the animal.
I have hunted with 264 Win mag, 6.5 rem mag, 6.5x284 Norma, and now am quite often using 6.5x300 Wby.
What I have found is that assuming you are not using a varmint/predator bullet, it does not really matter too much what you shoot. In all but the wby. the Scirocco 2, 130 gr would be my bullet if you made me choose just one.
The Wby gets fed ttsx.

Last edited by reynolds357; March 8, 2020 at 07:33 PM.
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Old March 9, 2020, 05:56 AM   #7
std7mag
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6.5--300 Weatherby, now there's a velocity addict!

Kilo,
I thought you liked the Sierra Tipped GameKing? Should perform somewhere between a Nosler Ballistic Tip, and a Berger.
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Old March 9, 2020, 09:37 AM   #8
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I can only pass along what I've read from others. But most any standard cup and core type lead bullet tends to over expand if impact speeds are over about 2800 fps.

The people who have shot game with any of the ELD-X bullets are reporting that they expand more than they'd like even at 6.5 CM and 308 speeds. But they are also reporting that they seem to be working, at least at those speeds. I haven't read any reports of anyone using them at faster impact speeds.

Impacting at 3000+ fps might be an issue on bigger game but I'd still think it would be effective on deer or deer size game. You might lose more meat at those speeds. This is one of those times where my 1st inclination is to start looking at the premium bonded bullets like Nosler Accubond or solid copper.

Based on what I've read Berger bullets get mixed reviews. Some love them, others hate them. There doesn't seem to be much middle ground. Another bullet that I've read nothing but good things about is the Lapua Scenar.

They are marketed as a target bullet, but there are lots of guys using the 6.5/139gr and 308/155gr on game and reporting exceptional results. They tend to behave much like Bergers and I can't recall a single negative comment on them as either a target or hunting bullet.
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Old March 9, 2020, 11:23 AM   #9
kilotanker22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmr40 View Post
I can only pass along what I've read from others. But most any standard cup and core type lead bullet tends to over expand if impact speeds are over about 2800 fps.

The people who have shot game with any of the ELD-X bullets are reporting that they expand more than they'd like even at 6.5 CM and 308 speeds. But they are also reporting that they seem to be working, at least at those speeds. I haven't read any reports of anyone using them at faster impact speeds.

Impacting at 3000+ fps might be an issue on bigger game but I'd still think it would be effective on deer or deer size game. You might lose more meat at those speeds. This is one of those times where my 1st inclination is to start looking at the premium bonded bullets like Nosler Accubond or solid copper.

Based on what I've read Berger bullets get mixed reviews. Some love them, others hate them. There doesn't seem to be much middle ground. Another bullet that I've read nothing but good things about is the Lapua Scenar.

They are marketed as a target bullet, but there are lots of guys using the 6.5/139gr and 308/155gr on game and reporting exceptional results. They tend to behave much like Bergers and I can't recall a single negative comment on them as either a target or hunting bullet.
Well coming apart inside the animal is sort of what I am after. I might end up slowing the bullets down a little anyway. They just don't shoot as well at the higher velocity. Pretty sure its a barrel time issue. My choice is to either slow it down or speed it up to find the next OBT node.
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Old March 9, 2020, 01:04 PM   #10
reynolds357
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmr40 View Post
I can only pass along what I've read from others. But most any standard cup and core type lead bullet tends to over expand if impact speeds are over about 2800 fps.

The people who have shot game with any of the ELD-X bullets are reporting that they expand more than they'd like even at 6.5 CM and 308 speeds. But they are also reporting that they seem to be working, at least at those speeds. I haven't read any reports of anyone using them at faster impact speeds.

Impacting at 3000+ fps might be an issue on bigger game but I'd still think it would be effective on deer or deer size game. You might lose more meat at those speeds. This is one of those times where my 1st inclination is to start looking at the premium bonded bullets like Nosler Accubond or solid copper.

Based on what I've read Berger bullets get mixed reviews. Some love them, others hate them. There doesn't seem to be much middle ground. Another bullet that I've read nothing but good things about is the Lapua Scenar.

They are marketed as a target bullet, but there are lots of guys using the 6.5/139gr and 308/155gr on game and reporting exceptional results. They tend to behave much like Bergers and I can't recall a single negative comment on them as either a target or hunting bullet.
Berger works well assuming 2 things.
1. High velocity is essential.
2. Dont shoot an Elk or Moose directly on the shoulder blade unless its a big Berger.
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Old March 9, 2020, 08:28 PM   #11
reynolds357
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Originally Posted by std7mag View Post
6.5--300 Weatherby, now there's a velocity addict!

Kilo,
I thought you liked the Sierra Tipped GameKing? Should perform somewhere between a Nosler Ballistic Tip, and a Berger.
Yep, the Wby screams.
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Old March 10, 2020, 03:32 AM   #12
Old Stony
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No idea what might occur at the velocities you are seeking, but I load both 6.5 Creedmore and Grendels both with the Hornady SST's. I have very good accuracy with them and performance has been very good for me. I shoot a lot of feral hogs and a few deer a year with no complaints about performance of that bullet. On large hogs I always try to shoot them in the front shoulder and the bullets seldom exit, but they certainly drop the hog right on the spot with a lot of internal damage and a broken front leg. Occasionally I have found the bullets under the skin on the exit side....nicely mushroomed.
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