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Old October 9, 2012, 07:10 AM   #1
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Remington Model 600 6.5 Rem Magnum

I just found out I'm going to be 'gifted' a Model 600 Magum Carbine in 6.5 Rem Mag. It's been sitting in a gun case since 1971...unused. I don't know that a round has ever been fired from it. From what I've read here and other places online, in addition to factory ammunition being fairly difficult to find, the rifle also suffers from "punishing" recoil and muzzle blast.

I'm not a gunsmith, but it seems that the 600 would benefit greatly from either being ported or having a muzzle brake installed. Can anyone give me the benefit of their experience along those lines?
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Old October 9, 2012, 07:17 AM   #2
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First, you need to decide if the rifle has sentimental value in it's present condition. Second, if there's no sentimental value at all, you'd be well advised to sell the piece and buy a suitable rifle for you purposes. Third, the actual performance of the 6.5 mag is greatly reduced by the short barrel and factory ammo supply is iffy.
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Old October 9, 2012, 07:27 AM   #3
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The recoil from a 6.5 Mag could hardly be called punishing. With a 129gr bullet at around 2700fps it makes a fine deer round and the little carbine is mighty handy. The round really has nothing on the old 6.5 Swede, and I probably wouldn't buy one, but if someone gave me one I'd take it deer hunting without a second thought.
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Old October 9, 2012, 07:27 AM   #4
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No sentimental value, but I'm fairly well stocked for the type and amount of hunting I do. I don't know that there's anything I "need". If I were to go home west of the Rockies or up to moose country, I might look at adding some bigger bores to the collection, but I have to admit the little carbine is sort of intriguing.
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Old October 9, 2012, 07:44 AM   #5
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I think you'll find the muzzle blast ( not the recoil ) to be most abusive... the 600 has a pretty short barrel, but they are cool rifles... mine has the vent rib, which I think most or all had ( I need to pull mine out... I don't remember what mine is chambered for I think it's a 6mm non magnum ( about the same as a 243 )

if you are a handloader, you should be able to find a load for the magnum that has less muzzle blast out of your 600
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Old October 9, 2012, 10:39 AM   #6
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As others have said, the 6.5mm Rem Mag's bark was worse than its bite. Recoil was OK, but the muzzle blast out of the short barrel is stunning. I think Remington was trying to invent the short magnums when it started marketing the 600 and the later 660 and Mohawk rifles, the rifles were short action, short barreled, and the dog-leg bolt handle was just flat ugly. The standard calibers it was chambered for lost a bit of performance due to the short action and short barrels, but the magnum cartridges suffered much more due to deep bullet seating to fit the short action and velocity loss due to short barrels. In a longer barrel, performance for the 6.5mm Rem Mag is actually pretty good.

The only chambering in the 600 I can say recoil was bad on was the 350 Rem Mag, and muzzle blast and recoil were harsh in a 6 lbs rifle.
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Old October 9, 2012, 02:22 PM   #7
Clifford L. Hughes
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Flying Mustng:

I owned Rmiengton 600 or a Remington 660 many years ago. It was one of the most accurate Rifles that I have owned. It recoil was moderate and not punishing. Maybe because I shoot a lot of magnum rifles I didn't notice the muzzle blast; however, I don't remember it being all that great. At a gun show I let a man talk me into trading it for a Model 70 Winchester .264 Wiin. Mag. A trade I now regret. With Sierra Game King 140grain bullets it shot to 3/4 inch groups. I might still have reloading dies for it.

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Old October 9, 2012, 02:31 PM   #8
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Thanks Gunny. Sounds like I'll leave her as she is and make sure I put some earplugs in!
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Old October 11, 2012, 01:06 AM   #9
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The 600 and 660 were ahead of their time.

Warning: Beware of often repeated Gun dogma.

Back in the late 1960s 8 to 9 pound, 24" barrel 30.06s and 270 were the norm. The 6.5 And 350 where as far from that model as possible. It was not until the 1980s that the idea of a light weight mountain rifle started to find favor with the general gun buying market.

Remington made the 788 and later the Model 7 that were/are very similar sized rifles as the 600, though chambered in more main stream calibers. Remington produced some 673 in the early 2000s but marketing was weak.

The dog leg bolt and vented ribs can be seen as useful or styling items. If one is to beat them up for their 1960s style, well that is in the eye of the beholder. I for one like the style.

Much like rifles chambered 338 Win Mags, 375 H&H, 416 Rigby, and 458 Lotts, these rifles were built to be hunted with not for an afternoon of target practice. A small, power, easy to carry rifle does come with some trade offs.

I have built several short 16 1/2 to 20" barrel hunting rifles over the years. 30.06, 7-08, 308, 30-30, the latest is an 18" barrel 8x57 Mauser on a 98 Mauser action. Sure the Muzzle blast is full strength but these gun where built be carried much and shot when needed.

If Remington where to build a new "600" rifle today, they would get rid of the magnum belted 6.5 and chamber it for 6.5 WSM with a short action and barrel. Possibly it could be build in 338 Federal? With the right marketing and sub MOA performance it would find a market.

Go out and shoot the rifle and see how you like it!...
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Old October 11, 2012, 07:42 PM   #10
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I bought one of the last of the Mohawk 600 rifles ever made. In .308 it has plenty of bark and bite but it's my go to woods rifle. It's definitely not a range plinker for the average person. Heck, checking the zero before deer season is not even fun but it puts the bullets where you point it and the deer don't know it's an ugly rifle.
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Old October 11, 2012, 07:50 PM   #11
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A few weeks ago, I picked up a '73 Rem 700 with 19.5" barrel in 6.5 mag. I haven't shot it a lot, but while I have, I didn't notice it having more muzzle blast than some of the longer barrel magnums I have.
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