6.5x55 or .308

Jimmy.jim86

Well-Known Member
#1
I've been looking for a 6.5x55 for a while,mon a limited budget but nothing to tight and haven't been able to find many rifles for sale.

A friend told me to swap to .308 as more availability I like 6.5 but am edging his way.

What are your thoughts I am now utterly stuck?


Thanks james
 
#2
Originally tried both of these calibres - for me the 6.5x55 cycled and felt better.
I was really lucky as just as I started looking for a rifle McLeods of Tain happened to have a secondhand 6.5x55in and for a price I could afford and that's how I got into the Swede brigade.
It's served me well in the time that I've owned it and I have no complaints about it.

Whatever you choose don't be to pressurised by others - choose whatever you feel comfortable with and all the best with whichever one it is.

Ed
 

big ears

Well-Known Member
#5
I have both and find either to be fine. At range 308 has an edge but only a small one. If I could only have one it would be the 308
 

norma 308

Well-Known Member
#6
What are you stalking mainly ? I've both and wouldn't swap either saying that the 270 got an outing today .the 6.5 doesn't figure on our counties gunshop shelves an awful lot you may have to try further afield .have you tried bradshaws fotheringay ?
Norma
 

stephentri

Well-Known Member
#7
I have a tikka t3 6.5x55 I use 140 grain sst every deer I have shot has went down within 20 yards very accurate caliber with homeloads I have 3 shots touching at 100 yards
 

philip

Well-Known Member
#9
I have both and find either to be fine. At range 308 has an edge but only a small one. If I could only have one it would be the 308
i have both calibres in sako 85 and they are both good all rounders, my main stalking/ longe range foxing rifle is the 6.5. I use 120 and 156 grain ammunition through that

the 6.5 I have one inch high at a hundred and the 308 one inch high 150
just about covers everything, both are cracking calibres

my favourite is the 6.5 over the 308

atb


phil
 

swarovski

Well-Known Member
#10
I am not familiar with the 6.5x55 but have a 6.5 06, its got alot more oooooooossh than the 55 but I think my 308 has the edge poleaxing the deer.the 308 will have way more knockdown power :cool:
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
#11
308 is the better hunting cartridge.
edi
Common Edi.
That's painting with a wide brush! I own both in multiples, shoot both, have hunted with both. I use the 6.5x55 more than the 308 but that's me. Both have their advantages and disadvantages but one isn't "better" than the other.

That said, if it was down to component availability and didn't care otherwise, I'd probably choose the 308.~Muir
 

Markfox

Well-Known Member
#13
I went with .308 used it a bit then went to a 6.5x55 does the same job less recoil , quiter and nicer to shoot I don't regret getting rid of the .308
 

Harry mac

Well-Known Member
#15
I used to stalk quite regularly with a guy who shot a 6.5x55 Sauer 202 and he used to often remark that there was a noticable difference between the 6.5 and his two previous rifles (one a 30-06 and the other a .257 Roberts) when it came to the speed at which deer would drop after the shot. He said that deer shot with the 6.5 would run far more often than with either of the other two, it might only be a case of staggering ten yards or maybe a short dash before dropping, but it was definately noticable.
I'd go for the .308.
 

Mungo

Well-Known Member
#16
Have a read of this:


6.5x55

I have witnessed very poor performance with the 6.5x55 - always because people have expected too much of it.

.308 is much more common, you can get a vast range of ammunition for it and is, I think, a much better all round cartridge.
 

Boarboy

Well-Known Member
#17
I have both, 2 barrels on one gun, so can make a fair comparison on recoil e.t.c. To be honest I don't think there is that much difference in recoil. I like them both, I get more accuracy out of the 6.5. If it were just for uk stalking I would go 6.5, but if you intend to hunt larger, boar e.t.c, I would go .308.
 

ejg

Well-Known Member
#18
Common Edi.
That's painting with a wide brush! I own both in multiples, shoot both, have hunted with both. I use the 6.5x55 more than the 308 but that's me. Both have their advantages and disadvantages but one isn't "better" than the other.

That said, if it was down to component availability and didn't care otherwise, I'd probably choose the 308.~Muir
The only two advantages I could see of the 6.5x55 over the 308 would be one lower recoil and possibly an advantage over 500m stalking deer. Other than that the 308 has quite a bit more energy with a short action case, mostly less powder, makes a bigger hole, can use heavier bullets. Seems less finicky with ammo (they say a 308 shoots nails) and has the advantage of more ammo available. In Ireland some stalkers had to use target ammo for deer as nothing else was available for the 6.5. The swedes were stuck with this cal and had to make do on Elk etc. I think it is a disgrace, the cartridge needed heavy deep penetrating bullets such as the lapua mega, which are now often used on smaller deer. These bullets mostly just pencil through if they don't hit bone with runners as a result.
Sorry I have spent enough time and ruined hunting days trying to find deer shot by the 6.5 that I won't hunt with anyone using one anymore.
I think it is much easier to choose or getting a 30cal bullet to work properly on the deer than the smaller 6.5 . I believe the 6.5 will work with the right bullet choice and the right man at the tiller however many do not have the know-how and just pick up a box of ammo or a box of what is available at the gun shop, with a 308 one will have a much better chance of picking up a cartridge that will put the deer down quicker. Why would we want to let the deer suffer unnecessarily.
I stick with it, for deer stalking the 308 is better in theory and better in the field than a 6.5x55.
edi
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
#19
The only two advantages I could see of the 6.5x55 over the 308 would be one lower recoil and possibly an advantage over 500m stalking deer. Other than that the 308 has quite a bit more energy with a short action case, mostly less powder, makes a bigger hole, can use heavier bullets. Seems less finicky with ammo (they say a 308 shoots nails) and has the advantage of more ammo available. In Ireland some stalkers had to use target ammo for deer as nothing else was available for the 6.5. The swedes were stuck with this cal and had to make do on Elk etc. I think it is a disgrace, the cartridge needed heavy deep penetrating bullets such as the lapua mega, which are now often used on smaller deer. These bullets mostly just pencil through if they don't hit bone with runners as a result.
Sorry I have spent enough time and ruined hunting days trying to find deer shot by the 6.5 that I won't hunt with anyone using one anymore.
I think it is much easier to choose or getting a 30cal bullet to work properly on the deer than the smaller 6.5 . I believe the 6.5 will work with the right bullet choice and the right man at the tiller however many do not have the know-how and just pick up a box of ammo or a box of what is available at the gun shop, with a 308 one will have a much better chance of picking up a cartridge that will put the deer down quicker. Why would we want to let the deer suffer unnecessarily.
I stick with it, for deer stalking the 308 is better in theory and better in the field than a 6.5x55.
edi
I can sense your bitterness but it sounds as if your opinion of the 6.5x55 is based on it's misuse. For your location -due to reloading and ammo supply constraints- it may not be the better choice, but to make the blanket statement that it is better is not recognizing the experiences of hunters who thoughtfully and skillfully kill their deer with the 6.5x55. In your last post you give ample evidence that the hunters were using the wrong bullets for the game they were shooting. What puts the cartridge at fault? It's like substituting salt for sugar and condemning the recipe. I can load ill suited bullets in the 308 and have as many complaints about it, as you have for the Swede.

As I said earlier. If 6.5x55 component and ammo availability was an issue I would go for the 308 with no regrets. If the opposite were true, I would be equally happy.~Muir
 

ejg

Well-Known Member
#20
I can sense your bitterness but it sounds as if your opinion of the 6.5x55 is based on it's misuse. For your location -due to reloading and ammo supply constraints- it may not be the better choice, but to make the blanket statement that it is better is not recognizing the experiences of hunters who thoughtfully and skillfully kill their deer with the 6.5x55. In your last post you give ample evidence that the hunters were using the wrong bullets for the game they were shooting. What puts the cartridge at fault? It's like substituting salt for sugar and condemning the recipe. I can load ill suited bullets in the 308 and have as many complaints about it, as you have for the Swede.

As I said earlier. If 6.5x55 component and ammo availability was an issue I would go for the 308 with no regrets. If the opposite were true, I would be equally happy.~Muir
Of course an expert who chooses the right bullet and is a trained capable rifle shooter would not need a 308 to kill a deer, he could possibly do that with a 22lr. The problem starts with the average rifleman, not even mentioning the lower end of skill. This huge portion of hunters are in my book better off with the 308. In like for like situations the chance of a quicker kill is given. For the welfare of the deer I'd rather see a beginner with a 308 than a 6.5. He is less likely to choose the wrong bullet and can dump more energy into a deer...hopefully killing it quicker.
None of us have to worry about the top 20% of deer stalkers who are experienced and can make decisions based on good knowledge. They'll take deer with 243/6.5/30cal almost equally well. At least they'll more likely know when not to take the shot.
I don't know why some think that the critique on the 6.5 performance is something new, I recon this has been the case since good 100 years and even the 6.5x64 Brenneke was designed due to the lack of performance of the 6.5x57. Many rifles were then re-chambered to the larger case.
Generally we hear very little complaints regarding performance of cartridges such as 8x57, 30-06, 308, 7x64, even 7x57, 7-08 vs 243 or 6.5x55.
edi
 

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