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Thread: 6.5 x 55 ballistics

  1. #1

    6.5 x 55 ballistics

    I was picking up on some threads/ write ups that often say the 6.5 x 55 lacks down range energy and rapidly tails off after the 200 yard mark. I was looking at the federal cartridge site and if you were to compare a 140gr 6.5 soft point to a 150gr .308 soft point the energies at 300 yards are 1341 to 1338 respectively. I would say there wasn't much in this?? Bullet drop on the 6.5 is only a further inch more at this range also. I know this is just one comparison example, and there would certainly be more to consider. For my sutuation, most of my shots are within 200 yards, and would probably go to a maximum of 300 say on the hill. I'd like to hear from those using the 6.5 in practical terms as to how it compares/ performs to other rifles at longer ranges.

  2. #2
    Forget what it says in the threads and get your 6.5 and crack on shooting !

    there is a lot of nonsense talked about ballistics/cartridges on forums when realistically 90% of centre fire calibre's are perfectly fine to kill stuff at normal ranges !
    Right where's those stones , I'll start !

  3. #3
    I can v-bull at 600yds (with a bit of measured luck) with my 6.5x55, but it's all about knowing your rifle/scope/ammo intimately... Just learn the clicks, or blobs and lines on your reticule, and practice.

    300yds is a 13.5" drop with mine - or midway between 2nd blob and 2nd line - but I've not shot anything beyond 201yds - or 1st line/-3.5" and that's far enough for me at the moment on anything live. I drew a blank on Tues eve, as 2 munties at 320yds wasn't a shot in my comfort zone
    Sako 75 6.5x55 - Z6i 3-18x50. Sako 75 .308 Habicht 2.5-10x56. Beretta 690. Benelli M2.
    "You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life."
    Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874-1965)

  4. #4
    Like the other say. So long as you know the actual drops of your ammo (tested in the field, not some computer program) and ranges are within your shooting capability then it doesn't matter if you have 6" at 250 yds or 13.5 at 300 or 27" at 600 so long as you can compensate the correct amount you should hit the mark. I shoot 6.5x55 and now .308 but it doesn't really make any difference as they both set up for 200 yd. Beyond that is irrelevant as I'd stalk closer.

  5. #5
    No matter what cartridge you have you have to remember a set of drops for it so the drop is unimportant.

    at normal stalking ranges the drops of the common deer legal cartridges are so close as to make no real world difference. The cross hairs on my scope cover 3 inches at 300 yards and I'd guess most stalking cartridges would fall well within that in terms of the difference between them.

    Get a rifle you like and that there is a ready supply of ammo for.
    For self catering accommodation on the Isle of Lewis please visit:

  6. #6
    Having shot .308 for many years where it counted, am confident it is a solid cartridge and highly effective out to 900m. However, I'm really happy with the performance of the 6.5x55; it's a very smooth cartridge side by side to the .308.
    With a PBR out to 200yds for British deer species on a 100yds zero, the discussions about 'long-range' energy are rather academic; few will shoot out to the distances they concern themselves with. Those that do, well they'll be good enough to use the 6.5 too!
    Have a slot for a .308 but not as smooth to shoot IMHO.
    Given the choice of one, 6.5x55 would be my choice again; I'll stalk the extra 200yd rather than adjust MOA, for me that would be the rewarding challenge.
    Different story for Fox, dial 'em in with the .223
    "There comes in the dead of night a hand of cold steel that plucks the German sentries from their posts"
    WSC 1942

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