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Old August 10, 2019, 08:25 PM   #1
med4th
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7mm08- vs 6.5 creedmoor for competition/hunting

Ok so i have been doing some research on the best hunting/competition caliber to buy. I know this is a hard topic to discuss but I have came across some interesting numbers.

From Hornadys website with both having a 90 degree 10mph wind @ 1000yds

7mm-08 150gr ELD-X(.574 BC)(.266 SD)
Velocity:1377
wind drift: 7 moa
come up: 30.99 moa
energy: 631 ftlb

6.5CM 143grELD-X (.625 BC)(.293 SD)
Velocity:1376
wind drift: 6.71 moa
come up: 31.55 moa
energy: 610 ftlbs

Even with the higher BC of the 6.5 cm, the 7mm-08 is basically the same but has twice the barrel life.
It seems to me if a man is going to only have one rifle to shoot competitions and hunt with the 7mm-08 wins.

the 6.5 cm has a little higher SD than the 7mm08 which means better penetration but the 7mm08 has more energy.

Thoughts?

Last edited by med4th; August 11, 2019 at 12:53 PM.
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Old August 11, 2019, 12:15 AM   #2
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Quote:
7mm-08 150gr ELD-X(.574 BC)(.266 SD)
Velocity:1377
wind drift: 7 moa
come up: 30.99 moa
energy: 631 ftlb
Quote:
6.5CM 143grELD-X (.625 BC)(.293 SD)
Velocity:1376
wind drift: 6.71 moa
come up: 31.55 moa
energy: 61 ftlbs
You better check your manual again. That energy is waaaaay low. Approximate same weight at approximate same speed should equal approximately the same energy.

While you're at it, look at what the ELD 162 gr is doing, I think it might be a good choice.
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Old August 11, 2019, 04:44 AM   #3
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If you reload your own ammo a strong case could be made for the 7-08 being the better choice. The 7mm will offer a little bit better selection of bullets than the 6.5mm, but only a hand loader can take advantage of that. If you're relying on buying factory ammunition the 6.5 Creedmoor is going to offer better bullet choices.
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Old August 11, 2019, 07:52 AM   #4
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You're comparing "hunting" bullets at 1000 yards. Both rounds can be effective as both hunting and target rounds, but with hunting bullets I'd not worry about what they are doing past 500 yards. And 300 is more realistic for most people.

If you want to see how they compare as target loads then use target bullets and feel free to run the data out to 1000 yards.

Both have the "potential" to be very nearly the same, but the 6.5 has several advantages. #1, it beats the 7-08 as both a hunting and target load by a small margin and does it with about 20% less recoil. And with factory loads the 6.5 will almost certainly be more accurate.

The 2nd advantage is that 6.5 rifles and ammo capable of both hunting and long range target shooting are available off the shelf. Rounds like 260, and 7-08 have the "potential" to be just as good. But all of those rifles were designed to be hunting rifles, not target rifles. Out of the box they simply aren't designed to shoot the better target bullets. The barrels are all wrong and those long target bullets wont' fit in the magazines or chambers.

If you want a 7-08 or 260 to shoot long range targets you certainly can make it work. If you're willing to spend the money for a custom rifle designed to work with long range target bullets. And then hand load those rounds to out of spec dimensions that will only work in the custom rifles.

Or you could spend $400 for an off the shelf 6.5 CM rifle and $30/box for off the shelf ammo and use the rifle for hunting anything you'd hunt with a 270, 308, or 7-08. And then use the same rifle for 1000 yard target shooting.

No one has ever claimed that the 6.5 was better than many similar cartridges. The long range target shooters have been using 7-08, 260, and 243 in modified rifles and with out of spec hand loads for a long time. The 6.5 and 6mm Creedmoor rounds just offer the same performance in off the shelf gear.
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Old August 11, 2019, 08:37 AM   #5
Don Fischer
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I love 6.5 and I love the 308. Qhen your talking about comparing them though for hunting. once the 6'5 reach's 160gr bullet's, it's pretty much out of gas. There are up to 200gr bullets for the 308 if you want. Hard to compare two cartridges like that. Both will do what you want and I suspect the 6.5 Creedmoor is not really at a disadvantage. If you were hunting grizzly bear or hunting in Grizzly country and had to choose from a 6.5 and a 308, which one would you choose? I'm absolutely certain the 6.5 could handle the Grizzly but I'd take the 308 with a 200gr bullet! Something to think about shooting a dangerous animal, if you want the best chance of ending it quickly, don't take a long shot. At that point what ever advantage one may have over the other will be determined by what bullet's are available! Went in fishing for Dolly Varden at Portage, Alaska years ago. The gun we carried was my 308 with 200gr bullet's.
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Old August 11, 2019, 09:26 AM   #6
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You cannot compare apples to apricots.
Both in your cartridge comparison, and your application.
I'm not so worried on bullet choices as JMR40. The bullet manufacturers have made great strides over the years.
I have seen someone use a stock Ruger77 MKII in 257 Roberts using Sierra 75gr HP varmint bullets shoot a 6" group of 10 at 1,000 yards.

Myself, having shot 2 F-class open competitions with my mostly stock Stevens 200 in 7mm-08AI can attest that a hunting rifle normally is not a good competition platform.

While having never shot the 6.5, i can attest to the effectiveness of the 7mm-08 at hunting distances of 400 yards.
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Old August 11, 2019, 12:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scorch View Post
You better check your manual again. That energy is waaaaay low. Approximate same weight at approximate same speed should equal approximately the same energy.

While you're at it, look at what the ELD 162 gr is doing, I think it might be a good choice.
Sorry for the typo. It should reflect 610.
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Old August 11, 2019, 01:12 PM   #8
med4th
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Originally Posted by jmr40 View Post
You're comparing "hunting" bullets at 1000 yards. Both rounds can be effective as both hunting and target rounds, but with hunting bullets I'd not worry about what they are doing past 500 yards. And 300 is more realistic for most people.

If you want to see how they compare as target loads then use target bullets and feel free to run the data out to 1000 yards.

Both have the "potential" to be very nearly the same, but the 6.5 has several advantages. #1, it beats the 7-08 as both a hunting and target load by a small margin and does it with about 20% less recoil. And with factory loads the 6.5 will almost certainly be more accurate.

The 2nd advantage is that 6.5 rifles and ammo capable of both hunting and long range target shooting are available off the shelf. Rounds like 260, and 7-08 have the "potential" to be just as good. But all of those rifles were designed to be hunting rifles, not target rifles. Out of the box they simply aren't designed to shoot the better target bullets. The barrels are all wrong and those long target bullets wont' fit in the magazines or chambers.

If you want a 7-08 or 260 to shoot long range targets you certainly can make it work. If you're willing to spend the money for a custom rifle designed to work with long range target bullets. And then hand load those rounds to out of spec dimensions that will only work in the custom rifles.

Or you could spend $400 for an off the shelf 6.5 CM rifle and $30/box for off the shelf ammo and use the rifle for hunting anything you'd hunt with a 270, 308, or 7-08. And then use the same rifle for 1000 yard target shooting.

No one has ever claimed that the 6.5 was better than many similar cartridges. The long range target shooters have been using 7-08, 260, and 243 in modified rifles and with out of spec hand loads for a long time. The 6.5 and 6mm Creedmoor rounds just offer the same performance in off the shelf gear.
You make some great points. However I think a bigger bullet moving just as fast if not faster at a given distance is going to give you better results on game.

I chose these two to compare because the data of the two is very close yet the 7mm08 has twice the barrel life. But it seems no one is using the round for competitive shooting.

My use would be primarily hunting while shooting a few matches a year.
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Old August 11, 2019, 02:59 PM   #9
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"Competition and hunting".
Far to vague a question to give much meaningful feedback. The BC narrative is the bait of the salesmen. Always going on about "BCs" which is WAAAAAAAAAAY less important for killing game then bullet construction.

So..........hunt what?

Deer?
Antelope
Black bear?
Elk?
Grizzly?
Bison
Elephant?

OK I got carried away there at the end, but the point is made.

For deer and antelope I doubt there is a lot of difference but for anything with thicker bones or more body weight then about 400 pounds I would tend to lean to the 7MM over the 6.5 MM.
I say this only because there are more "heavy for caliber" tough jacketed hunting bullets available for the 7MM then there are for the 6.5 MM. There are some good ones in the .264" size too, but not as many as in the .284" size.

Some folks hunt elk with thinly jacked bullet and in the cases when the bullets don't do as well as they should they chalk it up to "just one of those things".

So if elk, moose or caribou are not in your future I think I can say it would make no difference which you use.

If you hunt 450+ pound game a lot, I am betting you'll find an easier time getting good results with the 7MM. Again to repeat, the 6.5 is also able, but more limited in "elk bullets" over 140 grains. 140s kill elk fine however, so this is just a comparison, but from someone with over 1/2 century or elk hunting behind them, about 60% of which I was also a guide, sub-guide and/or packer. It was not uncommon for me to kill 2-3 elk a year and I also was responsible for gutting, quartering and often field butchering up to 22 elk a year, with an average of probably 10 per year. Seeing what various bullet do in elk that many times, I can safely say I probably have seen more elk kills in 3 years, then many dedicated elk hunters saw in their lives, and you need to add about 47 more years to that for my experience.
I would say right here the difference in the 6.5 Swede (which is ballisticly only about 1% or 2% more then the 6.5CM) and the 7-08 and 7X57 is fairly slim. I see the difference in bone breaking abilities when you see the 140s in the 6.5s being compared to the 160s in the 7s
Even then, I think the difference, though noticeable, is not going to be dramatic.

BC is moderately important in target shooting and about 1/10 as important in game shooting as it is in target shooting.

As your own post shows the difference is about 1/2 MOA in trajectory at 1000 yards (close to 5.5") and about 1/4 MOA of wind drift at the same distance. (about 2.5 to 3")

So------------- 3 questions to ask yourself.


#1. Can you hold for 2.5" at 1000 yards? If you can you are in the running to set a world record.

#2 If you can, (please note: I never said you could not) then you can just as easily hold for the additional 3" of drift as you could hold for 3" less drift. So that is a "non-argument".

#3 Is your game animal going to know or care?

If you are a target shooter who kills game with his target rifle you have an advantage with the 6.5 in that it kicks less.

If you are more a hunter of game from 75 to 750 pounds, who shoots targets with his hunting rifle you will be happier over the next few decades with a 7MM

If you only shoot game up to about 350 pounds and not bigger...........flip a coin -----or choose one that looks "prettier" to you.
You'll never know the difference.
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Old August 12, 2019, 07:04 AM   #10
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Honestly, I think the 7mm08 is one of the most useful cartridges ever developed. If I could only use cartridge for the rest of my life, that would probably be it.

Nothing intrinsically wrong with the Creed, but I probably fall in with those who feel like it was unnecessary in the first place and will likely never get one. But I guess there’s no legit reason not to choose it if you want a moderate .264 cal cartridge.

So for me, the 7mm08 wins. Amazingly efficient and balanced cartridge.
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Old August 12, 2019, 08:34 AM   #11
Jim Watson
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Quote:
the best hunting/competition caliber to buy.
I would not want to hump my heavy steady target rifle in the woods and I would not want to shoot my light handy hunting rifle all day on the range.

Now if you are talking about two rifles in the same caliber for convenience in ammo supply, that can be done. Which or what caliber depends on your usual game, have I missed that?

I am not at present doing much rifle shooting and am out of date. I know at one time, the guys who wanted a little more BC without getting kicked around were going to .284 WCF or its wildcat offspring, the .284 Shehane. When I was shooting F class, I did not see any 7mm 08 to recall, but I was mostly focused on F-T/R with .223 and .308.
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Old August 12, 2019, 09:25 AM   #12
Don Fischer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackstrawIII View Post

Nothing intrinsically wrong with the Creed, but I probably fall in with those who feel like it was unnecessary in the first place and will likely never get one. But I guess there’s no legit reason not to choose it if you want a moderate .264 cal cartridge.
Nothing wrong with the 7mm-08 either but like the Creedmoor, it was un-necessary in the first place. What will it do that a 7x57 won't do?
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Old August 12, 2019, 01:47 PM   #13
T. O'Heir
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"...for competition/hunting..." Two very different things that require different ammo. And two very different rifles.
Start by forgetting about hunting anything at 1,000 yards with either cartridge. 631 or 610 ft-lbs is not enough remaining energy to hunt anything.
"...31.55 moa..." That is your sight adjustment. It doesn't apply. A factory Hornady 143 grain ELD-X Precision Hunter, 6.5 Creedmoor, starting at 2700 FPS, drops 44.4" at 500 yards. And about 290" at 1,000 yards. That's about 24 feet.
The 'black' on a 1,000 yard NRA High Power target is about 44" diameter. The kill zone on a deer is 9".
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Old August 12, 2019, 07:21 PM   #14
med4th
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Originally Posted by T. O'Heir View Post
"...for competition/hunting..." Two very different things that require different ammo. And two very different rifles.
Start by forgetting about hunting anything at 1,000 yards with either cartridge. 631 or 610 ft-lbs is not enough remaining energy to hunt anything.
"...31.55 moa..." That is your sight adjustment. It doesn't apply. A factory Hornady 143 grain ELD-X Precision Hunter, 6.5 Creedmoor, starting at 2700 FPS, drops 44.4" at 500 yards. And about 290" at 1,000 yards. That's about 24 feet.
The 'black' on a 1,000 yard NRA High Power target is about 44" diameter. The kill zone on a deer is 9".
I would never take a shot on an animal at 1000 yards and nor did I state that in my original post.

The two very different rifles comment I think is a little off. if you have a gun shooting .5 inch groups or better at 100 yards with good bullets and good skill on the shooters part why can't he/she shoot out to a 1000 or better? the rifle doesn't weigh enough? there is no rule that says you have to have a 20lb rifle designated as a "target" rifle to shoot targets at 1000 yards.

IMO you just need a rifle that can shoot really tight groups and lots of skill.
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Old August 13, 2019, 02:13 AM   #15
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Wait... 600+ ft lbs of energy at 1,000 yards?
You do realize that's more than most 357Mag energy at the muzzle? (I said most...) :

I've seen my neighbor drop a doe at 150 yards with his 357.
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Old August 13, 2019, 02:36 PM   #16
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two rifles

Note WATSON's comments (and O'Heir) as to different rifles. A true 1000 yd competition rifle is a VERY specialized firearm, with much glass and much weight, and various other doo-dads attached and is as far from a hunting rifle as a Honda Civic is from a dual diesel pickup. Most run of the mill sporting rifles are constructed with an eye toward weight and balance and will weigh about half what a comp rifle will...typically. A comp rifle goes to the firing line........a hunting rifle goes afield....you've got to be able to carry the thing.

There is much talk these days about 1000 yd shooting, but my observations are that is is a very rarefied group that participates. The cost is high, and 1000 yd ranges are not all that common. A good friend drives several hours to compete at long range, and some of those ranges he attends are out of state as well. It is a process not easily nor affordably undertaken.

By contrast, most folks can hunt whitetails locally where shots are comparatively close (100 yds) and the animal weighs less than 200 lbs. If you are lucky and live in elk/moose/bear country, one may shoot 2-3 times as far far and at animals 2-3 times in size. I doubt if many folks who do not live in elk country get to hunt elk a lot. I for one, will likely never hunt elk.

Where am I going with this? If one has the time and money to pursue long range competitive shooting, and hunt as well, I am going to assume they can afford two (or more) rifles. I'd dedicate a rifle/combo in 6.5 CM (as it was intended) to competition where appropriate, and have a hunting rifle(s) in another caliber. What caliber would depend on how much western hunting I would get to do. Were I simply an eastern whitetail/hog hunter, I'd be perfectly happy with ANY of the short action calibers .243 through .308, and the 7-08 would be a strong contender. If I lived west, or was financially capable of a western hunt on a regular basis, I'd have a a long action caliber, possibly a 7mm Mag. minimally a .270.
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Old Yesterday, 04:39 PM   #17
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I’ve killed animals with both since I bought my son a 6.5cm. None have been more dead than the other. I took a Remington 700 SPS Varmint in 7mm08, cut the barrel to 20”, changed the trigger to a Timney, added a Wyatt DBM and a few other mods. Load is a 150grn NBT over 45.5grn of H414, that gun has killed a dump truck load of deer and pigs. I don’t aim for an area, I pick the spot, the exact spot. Eyeball, just hold still a second.

As a whitetail and pig cartridge, I don’t think there’s a better all around or balanced cartridge than the 7mm08.

Though I’ve honestly developed this unhealthy love affair with the .300wm lately. Because let’s face it a 200grn bullet at 2900-3000 fps is fun especially on a pig.
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Old Yesterday, 05:53 PM   #18
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The days of one gun for everything ended years ago. For hunting you want a relatively light and handy rifle good but not target trigger. For long range competition, you want a heavy stiff barrel and substantial stock and lighter match trigger. There is no way anyone with more the two nickels to rub together will only own one centerfire rifle for any serious effort at these two sports. The difference is small between these two. Unlike others, I am not going to interject my personal favorite. I will play his game.

For hunting , 7mm-08.

For long range competition, 6.5 CM.

Easy question. Next.
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