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View Full Version : Best 600 - 1000 Yard Cartridge w/Decent Barrel Life?


Phil3
03-12-2012, 6:26 PM
Given the cost of barrels, chambering, shipping a barrel back and forth, barrel life can be pretty important. If a barrel costs $600 with all those costs and lasts 3000 rounds, that is $0.20 a round. For shooting at 600 - 1000 yards, which cartridge do you think offers very good accuracy with decent barrel life. I know the 6.5 x 284 is very good at longer distances, but it eats barrels. The 308 has excellent barrel life, but trajectory is not so great pas 800 yards or so. I am thinking 260 Remington. Does not eat barrels like a 6.5 x 284, but worse than the 308. Maybe a good compromise. I like the 6mmBR for 600 yards, and know it can do the job at 1000, but the 260 may be better at 1K.

Thoughts?

Phil

SFgiants105
03-12-2012, 6:32 PM
I've heard very good things about .260 Rem for 1000yd shooting. It's that 6.5 mm projectile that has such a damn good bc. If I'm not mistaken, it's a .308 case necked down to accept a 6.5 bullet.

wooger
03-12-2012, 6:35 PM
BRX or Dasher. Depending of course on the discipline, .260 might be just what you need.

Pthfndr
03-12-2012, 6:50 PM
In a short action bolt gun, or a semi auto - 260 Remington.

In a long action bolt gun - straight .284 or 6.5x55.

killshot44
03-12-2012, 7:03 PM
Phil, I just built a 6 dasher for use on Range 12 and used it in the American/Canadian matches.

It fared very well despite my wind reading. Yesterday at 1K we had wind up to 11mph which made for some tough work with the 6mm. However, the wind was moderate at 900 and scoring was fairly easy. 300 and 600 yards are cake.

If I shot ONLY at 1K, I'd go with a straight .284 like Pthfndr says. Good 7mm projos are available and it won't burn barrels like the overbore 6.5/284. But for pure accuracy in a short action, the improved 6BRs are very, very hard to beat.

Pthfndr
03-12-2012, 7:36 PM
The 308 has excellent barrel life, but trajectory is not so great pas 800 yards or so.

Phil

Just so you know, trajectory in regards to elevation is just numbers and really makes no difference if you are shooting at known distances where you do not have to rapidly transition from one target to another.

The "hot rod" cartridges are popular because they have less wind drift at distance compared to a .308, thereby leaving more margin for error when wind is a factor - and past 600 yards wind is almost always a factor.

The key to shooting accurately at long range is learning to read the wind and compensate for it. NO, repeat NO cartridge will compensate for a lack of ability to read the wind. I've seen several people shooting .338 Lapua Magnums get smoked by people shooting the "lowly" .308.

Fjold
03-12-2012, 7:37 PM
Take a look at the 7mm-08 while you're at it. With the 168 grain SMK at 2670 fps (easily done with a 24" or longer barrel) you'll be at 1.1+ mach at 1,000 yards using 34 MOA.

russ69
03-12-2012, 7:57 PM
It really sounds like you know your stuff. Pick the one you like and get it working as best you can. Everything is a compromise, you'll have to pick the compromises that make the most sense for you.

Phil3
03-12-2012, 8:01 PM
Phil

Just so you know, trajectory in regards to elevation is just numbers and really makes no difference if you are shooting at known distances where you do not have to rapidly transition from one target to another.

The "hot rod" cartridges are popular because they have less wind drift at distance compared to a .308, thereby leaving more margin for error when wind is a factor - and past 600 yards wind is almost always a factor.

The key to shooting accurately at long range is learning to read the wind and compensate for it. NO, repeat NO cartridge will compensate for a lack of ability to read the wind. I've seen several people shooting .338 Lapua Magnums get smoked by people shooting the "lowly" .308.

Rob,

I do recognize the 308 is capable in the right hands is capable, and also has the advantage of being more economical due to its great life. I was considering the 260 because it does help in the wind drift area and also has less recoil, something I would think could help in my own performance. I also think the 308 is dropping pretty quick at 1000 and loads have to be spot on to maintain consistent velocity. But then again, something for me as a reloader to learn. And boy, do I have a lot of that to do!

Phil

Pthfndr
03-12-2012, 8:26 PM
Take a look at the 7mm-08 while you're at it. With the 168 grain SMK at 2670 fps (easily done with a 24" or longer barrel) you'll be at 1.1+ mach at 1,000 yards using 34 MOA.

This is what I currently shoot in tactical long range matches (out to 1K), but with the Hornady 162gr BTHP or 162 AMAX, and it performs quite well. It requires more elevation than the 260 with a 142 smk or 139 Lapua Scenar, but has the same wind drift at 1K as they do.

It does have a little more kick to it than the 260, but not a lot more.

Very few people shoot a 7-08 in long range competition. The 260 has good bullets, good barrel life, low felt recoil, and there is tons of good established load data for it.

The 6mm cartridges, while offering outstanding performance and very low felt recoil, just have not proven to have long barrel life when pushed hard. If you can afford to rebarrel every 1000-1500 rounds, they are a viable choice.

I also think the 308 is dropping pretty quick at 1000 and loads have to be spot on to maintain consistent velocity.

At 1K everything is dropping quickly. Once you get out that far it doesn't make any difference what cartridge you are shooting, if your load is not consistent you will have vertical dispersion. If your load is consistent, I say again, elevation is just a number you dial in.

Wooger, Killshot, Matt and Fjold are all guys who I know shoot long range (and I know 3 of them personally) and they will all tell you the same thing.

Wind drift on a 308 is a lot compared to a 260 unless you are shooting 155gr bullets really fast from a long barrel.

mattt
03-12-2012, 8:32 PM
I did ok at 1K with my 223 on sat at the can ams but not so good at 300 600 900:)

Pthfndr
03-12-2012, 8:34 PM
I did ok at 1K with my 223 on sat at the can ams but not so good at 300 600 900:)

HERETIC! Everyone knows a .223 can't make it to 1K :)

Fjold
03-12-2012, 8:42 PM
This is what I currently shoot in tactical long range matches (out to 1K), but with the Hornady 162gr BTHP or 162 AMAX, and it performs quite well. It requires more elevation than the 260 with a 142 smk or 139 Lapua Scenar, but has the same wind drift at 1K as they do.

It does have a little more kick to it than the 260, but not a lot more.

Very few people shoot a 7-08 in long range competition. The 260 has good bullets, good barrel life, low felt recoil, and there is tons of good established load data for it.

The 6mm cartridges, while offering outstanding performance and very low felt recoil, just have not proven to have long barrel life when pushed hard. If you can afford to rebarrel every 1000-1500 rounds, they are a viable choice.

I shoot a little bit at 1K also, I just can't decide what cartridge to use to do it. :D If the winds are light I'll shoot a 22.250 or 243 but as the winds pick up I'll switch to a 260 or 308 and in the worst conditions I'll shoot my 6.5x284.

I don't go any heavier because of recoil and I refuse to shoot a braked rifle in competition due to the nuisance factor to other shooters on the line.

wooger
03-12-2012, 8:42 PM
If I shot ONLY at 1K, I'd go with a straight .284 like Pthfndr says. Good 7mm projos are available and it won't burn barrels like the overbore 6.5/284. But for pure accuracy in a short action, the improved 6BRs are very, very hard to beat.


Ahh, another 7mm convert! You know they can burn barrels also.... depending on whose internet advice is followed. Occasionally they do place though.

mattt
03-12-2012, 8:45 PM
I beat a few 308 f/tr shooters and a few of your folkes Rob even with a miss at 300:facepalm: there was one tac guy that was kicking some butt with his 308 and if he would have been in f/tr might have took it.

Pthfndr
03-12-2012, 8:54 PM
Ahh, another 7mm convert! You know they can burn barrels also.... depending on whose internet advice is followed. Occasionally they do place though.

We have several guys that shoot in our group running straight .284s and getting 2000-2500 rounds of GOOD barrel. The 7 mags not so much. I'm at about 1500 through my 7-08 right now. I'll let you know at the end of this season :)

scotty99
03-12-2012, 9:20 PM
I think .260 is the right answer to this question. I think it wins right now for highest BC with longest expected barrel life, with very mild recoil as a nice bonus.

killshot44
03-13-2012, 11:20 AM
...there was one tac guy that was kicking some butt with his 308 and if he would have been in f/tr might have took it.

That was no .308, Kerley and Wahlmeier were shooting Marc's creation: the Spartan 6.5 (a modified .260, less taper more shoulder angle). Marc is also making a Spartan 6 with a modified .243 case.

Red Devil
03-13-2012, 2:15 PM
Custom long action: .280 AI/160gr.
Factory long action: .270 Win./150gr.
Short action: 260 Rem./140gr.

"Live Long and Prosper..." ;)

rksimple
03-13-2012, 3:33 PM
I like the 260 for an all around LR competition rifle. Brass is cheap, multiple choices for good bullets, decent barrel life, etc. If I weren't shooting so many lost brass matches, I'd probably run a 6.5x47, however. A straight 284 in a LA is also another option for you.

What type of shooting do you have in mind? F class style? Or more dynamic, fast paced stuff?