Rifle Shooter Looks at the 6mm Creedmoor Inch by Barrel Inch

While 6.5 Creedmoor is all the rage in the OEM world, quite a few in the reloading world have been looking at .260 Remington and its slightly hotter, smaller cousin, the 6mm Creedmoor for their precision long-range builds. Like the 6.5, the 6mm Creedmoor eeks out just a hair more case capacity (though some would argue this depending on the brass manufacturer).

6mm Creedmoor is pending SAAMI publication, but quite a few are looking to the caliber for their PRS and 1000+ yard guns while keeping to short-action lengths. Looking to it in a similar, albeit more scientific vein, RifleShooter.com purchased a 31″ blank and proceeded to test the caliber inch by inch.

The results? Its a barrel-burning caliber, but produces 3000+ FPS out of barrels 20″+ repeatedly. Considering 6mm’s ballistic coefficient, its a fantastically fast round capable of reaching out and touching targets. Putting pure speed aside for a second, Rifleshooter also looked to interpret the data.

In short, it seems that 25″ is the point of diminishing return for the caliber. Past that barrel length, gains in velocity drop relative to the barrel length.

For the full article, head on over to RifleShooter.com. The data, including details on the barrel, loads tested (all factory) and full results are live and ready for the long-range aficionado’s consumption. 

Nathan S

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


  • Quest

    Lower Recoil, flatter trajectory, more streamlined bullet with longer nose ogive and higher form factor, less wind drift, higher supersonic range, higher KE/mm², etc – than 6.5Creedmore.
    Sure its less good for barrel life, but to counter that you can instead use a longer barrel and optimize the propellant.

    • Quest

      (higher form factor isnt that correct, better – would be a more suited word, because form factors calculate in a way that low form factors increase bc)

  • Walter Mitty


  • DIR911911 .

    ” 6.5 Creedmoor is all the rage in the OEM world” . . . the Original Equipment Manufacturer world , really?????

    • guest

      In all honesty I am lost in the wide world of “standard” cartridges and even more so in the world of “wildcats”. And it does not matter if it’s a handgun or a rifle cartridge – I simply can not understand the point of having so many especially when a LOT of them are so similar in performance and the actual need for that minute performance difference is often either exaggerated or outright false. The only real situation they are different in is price and cost of components.
      And I think part of the reason why this (the number of different cartridges) has expanded so much is the exact same reason why there are so many same-same-but-different guns on the market: the uniquely stupid human need to be “unique” and “special”.

      Oh, the .223 has bad ballistics, so and so, I’ll go for .222. Ad nauseum.

      • gordon

        So you commented to insult people who choose other than the most “standard” rounds. That is no wiser than being a snowflake yourself.

        • Anonymoose

          I wish these snowflakes would melt already.

          • guest

            Could not have said it better. Indeed most of these “exciting new round” will fade away for the reasons I listed. But the problem goes beyond this, as a lot of people will keep those rounds on life-support to “keep the going” for whatever reason, even though in the literally same gun store they’ll find both cheaper and more common rounds that will for 99% of the situations do the job just as well.

            And as to “gordon”:

            “That is no wiser than being a snowflake yourself. It is also
            hypocritical if you don’t also eat only the most standard food, drive
            the most standard car, read the most standard books, etc”

            Firstly the modern definition of “snowflake” according to Urban Dictionary is currently “An overly sensitive person that doesn’t take criticism well.” Neither you nor Sunshine_Shooter have the maturity to conduct a discussion without boiling off, let alone should be trusted with firearms.

            So what happened here – and here comes another word that you’ll have to look up before you misunderstand and/or misuse it – you got triggered.

            As to the meat and potatoes of what you wrote after that – you prove my point. You chose something as to not to be “boring” and “conforming”, you chose the “non-standard” out of the “need” of it not being standard, rather that out of practical needs. Hence you and your ilk will always chose guns and ammo the same way people chose art. Me and you are in similar yet completely different worlds where guns are toys and entertainment for you where as they’re tools for me.

      • iksnilol

        But .222 is older than .233.

        • guest

          True. Equally true is that .30-30 is even older than 7,62×39. But in both cases some people seem on dragging fossils like that into the third millennium, which is exactly my point. And once they do that then hold on to your horses – there will be people making something which is a bastard hybrid between the two with some obscure bullet and/or neck dimensions claiming it is “so much better” because of some marginal difference in performance.

          • Anonymoose

            Heavy 7.62×39 is like a lightly-loaded .30-30. .300 Blackout with light bullets has the same velocity as 7.62×39 with slightly heavier bullets. They’re not quite the same, and I’d take the .30-30 (or better yet a full-power .308 or .30-06) over all of them for hunting, and the other two are more platform-specific.

      • Sunshine_Shooter

        You want to know why so many cartridges exist? Because there are so many specific uses and applications for guns, and everybody wants a slightly different solution to those applications, creating a myriad of possibilities. If your puny, simple mind gets overwhelmed by what’s commercially available (let alone wildcats), then maybe you should go back to Nerf guns, or airsoft.

        • guest

          My puny little mind is not overwhelmed, as much as it is irritated by pretentious snobs who really have no valid reasons as to why they select calibers with marginally differing performance as opposed to using *common* cartridges. For example: .22LR, .556, 7.62×51, 338LM and .50 will cover 99% of all likely applications. Advantages – commonly available, never any real problems with supply, very competitive prices, are available for more weapons than any other rounds (if for example you like in the Western world).
          Now I am perfectly aware that there are some very specific needs some people (Like BR shooters) need to have covered. When it comes to hunting – any serious deviation from these rounds is never really justified. Same goes for almost all sports. Same logic is accented even further for AF/LEO.

          Now, I never question the liberties people take like chosing guns for “different applications” and I recognize that as a right, I will however exercise my own right to point out that most of it is completely unnecessary BS with no real justification.

          • iksnilol

            You’ll take my 6.5×55 from my cold, dead hands.

          • Blake
          • Marcus D.

            I can’t see any of these rounds as appropriate for hunting most large game. Yes, 5.56 and 7.62×39 are competent for varmints up to small deer (in jurisdictions where allowed), but I wouldn’t hunt mulies, elk, moose or bear with any of them; and.338 LM and .50 BMG are waaay too big (and waaay too expensive for most shooters). I think you need to broaden your horizons a bit. .243, .270 and .30-06 have their place in the hunting world, as has 300 BLK for hogs. And the 6.5 Creedmoor is earning a place for people who want to be able to hit a 1000 yard target without the recoil of a .308, or .338LM.

            And you have of course left off all of the cowboy action shooters who must use double barreled shotguns and lever guns along with their revolvers, percussion or otherwise. And you’ve missed out on the states that only allow hunting with shotguns and muzzleloaders.

          • G

            Cilivians are not allowed to own weapons in “military cartridges” in some countries. So you can’t own, or find ammunition for, 5.56×45, 7.62×51, 338LM or 50BMG weapons in those countries.

          • guest

            Not true. For bolt actions .223 can be “modded” indefinitely – with weaker powder loads, unusual bullet types (extremely light or very heavy), and thus can be tailored to specific uses.
            As for the 7.52×51 it can pretty much substitute (although not entirely) anything that is 6.5/6mm, where such cartridges as 6,5×55 hold only one real advantage – better BC for some very high performance bullets.
            And speaking of which – the .30-06 is pointless as it is just a hair’s width away performance wise from 7.62×51.
            Even IF you stick to factory ammo and for some odd reason ignore that the same “standard” cases can be loaded according to need, then even in that case you’d struggle or be splitting hairs when it comes to things “in between” those rounds (.22LR, .223, 7.62×51, .338LM and .50).
            That’s my whole point. Because even if you list say 1 round to be “in between” all those, it’s really not that benign as if the number just doubled – it’s literally hundreds if not thousands of round that also exist and also fill their 1% performance difference magin, and that’s just completely pointless.

          • Tassiebush

            I do agree to some extent as there are a huge number of rounds that roughly duplicate each other and if things were more standardized I’m sure ammo would be better and cheaper, and probably with more tailored loads commercially available (this will undermine some of my following points) but I think there are some serious performance gaps in the examples you listed. For example there is a lot of small game where .22lr is inadequate and .223 is over the top in noise (depends on setting) and destruction. Also when you look at maximum point blank range which is very relevant to hunting there are a lot of commercial cartridges that perform better than the rounds listed. This type of cartridge is definitely a great offering when you think of maximum range for minimum recoil.
            Having said all that I think the Scandinavians are really into something with 6.5×55 being used for a huge variety of game.

      • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

        Unfortunately that is often not the most profitable route for gun/ammo manufacturers. For one reason or another it is a better choice for their profits to release a new caliber with a new firearm or just a new caliber and it usually does something at least slightly better so people buy it.

        Maybe that would not be the case if all customers were just like you, but particularly if you are a reloader, it doesnt matter how popular a certain cartridge is as long as you can get the components you need.

        I do agree that there are probably 20 or 30 calibers (and even fewer firearm platforms) that give a shooter 98% of everything they need, but the fun comes from chasing that last 2%.

  • noob

    Should .260 be worried that everyone is ogling its “slightly hotter, smaller cousin”?

    • JumpIf NotZero

      First of all, +1 for slightly hotter cousins everywhere…

      But yea, 260 is done. When mfgs started switching guns from 260 to 6.5… They’re practically identical, so to see mfgs switch from one to the other, that’s market driven right there.

      260 is great that it’s the same case as a 308, but in typical Remington fashion, they just didn’t support it like they should have. Contrast that with the 6.5cm where you can go buy excellently consistent rounds from Hornady anywhere in the country off the shelf, lapua is making brass for 6.5, etc. It’s just over with.

      • nova3930

        word to that. If remington actually supported 260 I would have just bought a 700 instead of going to get a 6.5.

      • iksnilol

        6.5 cm? Duuude, you’ve got a better shoulder than me.

        in all seriousness, .260 might have an advantage since you cna use the same bolt as 308. So a switch barrel going from from .308 to .260 might be nice since you’d avoid messing/packing with another bolt.

        • V

          Now tell me what practical use it has to switch between .308 and .260 and hunking around another large long heavy barrel.

          • iksnilol

            I dunno, l like switch barrels. Prefer over having two guns.

          • Sunshine_Shooter

            I really like the idea of switch barrel designs, but they tend to be inefficient money-wise in most platforms.

          • iksnilol

            I dunno, I kinda disagree.

        • Anonymoose

          I’d rather just have an 8.8 cm, even if it doesn’t have that same “flat trajectory” as the 6.5 cm.

          • Quest

            Do you play in the kid-sandpit with that 8.8cm? 80cm Schwerer Gustav much more adequate, both for paper target shooting at range, and home defence when you dont want overpenetration against drywalls.

          • Anonymoose

            That too, but I’m not usually in the city-penetration business.

          • Tassiebush

            You pick up in the country?

        • G

          6.5 Creedmoor and 6.5×47 Lapua use the same bolt as 260 Remington.

          • iksnilol

            Oh, then anything with the Remington is getting screwed.

  • Blake

    Very cool stuff.

    Given that good old .243 Win will kick 105-110ish grain match bullets out at around 3kfps (especially from our 28″bbl Ruger M77mkII varmint rifle), what’s the advantage of 6mm Creedmoor vs. this venerable cartridge that you can buy ammo for in virtually every shop that sells ammo in North America (Chuck Hawks calls it “the most popular CXP2-class game cartridge in the world”)?

    I’d be really interested to see a head-to-head test between the two cartridges. For bonus points, add .243 Ackley & 6mm Remington to the test. All using the same brass (e.g. Hornady), primers, bullets, powder, etc.