260 REM versus 6.5 CM


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Jul 7, 2022
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I own a 300wsm and 30.06. I am considering purchasing another rifle for mainly my children to use as the grow up. Think a 6.5 CM or 260 Rem would be a good option. Which one is better and why? I am a reloader.


6.5CM. Quality factory ammo will be easier to find and there are countless more factory rifle options available.
ton,s of cheap 243-7mm08-308 cases for reloading the 260 rem. my own choice would be a 6.5x55, i own a cz 550 in 6.5x55 with a 24 'barrel and 1x8 twist and loading N 560 i can get 2900 fps with no problems at all with a 139 gr bullet.
Here is some info I gathered for low recoil rifle cartridges that could be used for elk. Most of all the cartridges suggested in previous comments would be great choices.

Info retrieved from Hornady Ballistics Charts and Chuckhawks recoil table.

Assumption 1 - that 1,300 ft/lbs is minimum required energy for bullet expansion and penetration with correctly placed shot on elk.

Assumption 2 - I listed 200 yard performance as shot distance should be limited to <200 yards for new hunter.

Assumption 3 - rifle cartridge selected should allow for shot distance to increase over time making the cartridge more versatile.

Assumption 4 - cartridge performance can be improved upon - using published data for this comparison.

Assumption 5 - felt recoil can be reduced with properly fitted stock/pad and weight of rifle.

I listed 139 & 140 grain bullet weights for side by side comparison - 308 & 30-06 have 150 grain bullet data listed.

7x57. 12 lbs of recoil with 139 grain bullet. 1774 ft lbs at 200 yards.

Max effective range 400 yards - 1314 ft/lbs energy

7mm-08. 13lbs recoil with 139 grain bullet. 2042 ft lbs at 200 yards.

Max effective range 500 yards with 1311 Ft/lbs energy

6.5CM. 13 lbs recoil with 140 grain bullet. 1773 ft lbs at 200 yards. Max effective range 400 yards - 1379 ft/lbs energy

308 Win. 16 lbs recoil with 150 grain bullet. 2176 ft/lbs at 200.

Max effective range >400 (1543 ft/lbs at 400 drops to 1287 at 500). **Could not find 140gr bullet data on Hornady***

.270 win. 17 lbs recoil with 140 grain bullet. 2042 Ft/lbs energy at 200 yards.

Max effective range 500 yards - 1310 ft/lbs energy

280 Rem. 17 lbs recoil with 139 grain bullet. 2250 ft lbs at 200 yards. Max effective range >500 - (1459 ft/lbs @500)

30-06. 18 lbs recoil with 150 grain bullet. 2300 ft/lbs energy at 200. Max effective range 500 - 1370 ft/lbs energy. **could not find 140gr bullet data on Hornady***
Dang - posted that before I could edit - anyhow, here’s some info I used to make cartridge/rifle selection for my nieces and nephews when getting them rifles
Pretty much the same ballistically, along with the 6.5x55. Flip a coin. However, my choice would be the 6.5 Creedmoor, just due to the fact that there are a greater number of factory loads available. If they like the rifle and eventually leave home with it, you may not be local to load for it.
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I would pick the 260 but I just have a personal vendetta against long range shooting (which it was designed for). Imo the Creedmoor is still a fad, although ammo should be readily available in the distant future since so many rifles are out there.

The 260 has plenty of factory ammo and easy to reload. It's an underrated classic. If I was buying a nice wood stock blued rifle, it would be the 260 over the 6.5

Don't overlook the 7mm08 though
Of the 2 choices I went with the .260 years ago (had Douglas barrel co rebarrel a ruger no. 1) very simple to reload. I've used several bullets and weight with no issues. Settled on 143 gr eld-x. Rifle out shoots me. Fantastic under rated cartridge. Used on whitails, few hogs, and pleasure shooting.
I am biased against the 6.5 CM, but I bought one anyway in a lightweight mountain rifle because of the enormous variety of factory loads available.

I have two .260's and one 6.5x55.

Ballistic, there is hardly any difference between the 3.

If I was a serious handloader, I would go for the .260, because of parent .308 Winchester case.

I would try to find a rifle with a barrel twist close to 1:8" to stabilize heavy bullets, if 400 pound+ animals will be hunted.

(If 120g bullets will do the job, I think you will be fine with a 1:9. 1:10 or even 1:11)
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Get them a 25-06 257 weatherby or 257 AI and they'll shoot it for life. Otherwise get them a larger case 6.5 they really don't recoil much. Check out the better than needmore options offered by weatherby, the two smaller cartridges than the 6.5-300.
6.5CM, is it better than the 260 no. It is a little shorter so you can load bullets longer to take advantage of the case. I like the 130gr class of bullets for the 6.5 for a balance of speed. With 130s was getting right at 2900fps using H4350. Hornady makes really good ammo for it, have made hits on less than 1/2 MOA targets past 500 yards with factory ammo. It is a well balanced round. It has killed, Elk, Nilgai, Black bear, deer, hogs. With the bullets available today you have many options.
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For longer range - target or hunting, the 260 has a slight advantage. But it's pretty much a reloading proposition.

I like the Creedmoor, even though I reload.
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