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Thread: Who has experience with 6.5-06 AI?

  1. #1

    Default Who has experience with 6.5-06 AI?

    A while back I picked up an extra 30-06. I already had 2 but this one was cheap so I bought it. It is an FN action and I decided that I want to re-barrel it and I am really looking hard at the 6.5-06 AI and am hoping that some others have played with this round.

  2. #2

    Default I own one

    Built on a Zastava action. 26" Pac-Nor 1:8 barrel in a nutmeg laminate Boyd's stock. Is a tackdriver with 120 Sierra Pro-Hunters. I really like the round. Might give up some to the 264WM, but it serves my purposes.

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    Member Big Al's Avatar
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    I've had two and can tell you that if you don't anneal your rass up front your aregoing to havea lot of splits or cracked brass. My last was on a pre-64 model 70 action and when I rebarreled I went to the 6.5X55 I just got tired of messing with the brass. I love the 6.5m, what I don't like is messing with brass for so little gain.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tryants." (Thomas Jefferson

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    I have one now and have owned a few others. Mine is on a Sako AV action with a very accurate Shilen 24" barrel. I have no problems loading or shooting except to say that there is more case than can be filled with any powder and it is overbore by a small amount. I make brass so effortlessly from 25-06 brass (to standard 6.5-06). I neck it up and it fire forms on the first load to fit very well. I use standard 6.5-06 data for fire-forming. I don't have data at my finger tips but I think I have hit 2900 with 160 grain bullets with the AI version. They seem to work best with bullets in the 140 grain weight range as does my standard and 6.5-284. I would not make another 6.5-06 AI as the 6.5-06 is very well balanced a much better round than the 25-06 or the 270. I have a Dakota M97 in 6.5-06 (and one in 338-06) and love the guns and caliber. I would not AI, not because it is problematic but because the case size vs bore size is a little too big. Standard 6.5-06 is great.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  5. #5

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    Thank you for the advice from your experiences. I have decided to stick with the 6.5-06 standard. This is exactly why this board is great.

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    Default Great Choice For a Custom Rifle

    I have 6.5/06 with a 1 in 8 #4 contour Shilen on a CZ550. It is one of those rare rifles that shoots every load to the same point of impact at 100 yds. Its a bit heavy for Sheep hunting but should work well on Blacktails. I have a couple AI's and I will probably never have one again. It can be hard enough to find the time to develop good loads much less fire forming all the brass as well.

    Good Shooting

  7. #7

    Default 6.5/06 ai

    I too have used 25/06 brass and it seems to hold up well.. a 24" stainless on a small ring 98 hva action.. No you will not give anything up to the 264 win. I have used many powders and the best velocity was with 8700-- but almost the smae with R-19 and very good with WMR. H-1000 .. I am sure you can get the highest velocity with R-24 or imr 7828..I have reached higher velocities, but try to stay at 3050 with the 140 and about 3150 with the 129 bullet.. I had my first 6.5/06 in 1975 and it was the standard ,but the most accurate Rifle I have ever pull the trigger on. sold it and had this one made up and it is good.. But the 6.5/06 is a super long range round and to improve on it you will have to shoot a 338 lapala.. one more thing be careful with 100 gr bullets the zip out at over 3500 I think mine will do 3700- too fast so I load them down to 3400. there is only one negative thing about the thing and it is simply a loud report.. so wear good ear protectors.

  8. #8

    Default to Kickittat and Murphy 6.5/06 AI

    the real 6.5 yes the AI now guys I have studied ballistics for a very long time and have discouvered things that may interest you.. I like Reloader Powder so I use it the most.. for the 6.5/06. I use the 270 winchester loading data... the 150 gr. 270 for the 6.5 140 and the 130 270 data for the 6.5 129 bullet and my results are excellant .. although the 270 is .014 larger in Dia your AI case will hold about 4% more powder, but the regular 270 charges are close to max for the 6.5 AI.. do not use this in the standard 6.5/06.. drop by 5% or them.. Good shooting and the critters must be very very far off to be safe..

  9. #9

    Default to Murphy

    on the 6.5/06AI you as usual are right about most things and I agree..If I had it to do over, I would just use the ol standard 6.5/06 and go to a 26" instead of the 24" barrel and in this calibre the rusults would be the same.. but like you I am sure we have a great deal of $$$ in this custom AI, so we shoot them.. both give you the same as a 264 win mag, but the standard is by far the most efficient.. well I feel with a little work and shooting with the Reloader 25, we may get a 100 to 150 fps over the standard, but as you know this is a lot of work and we have to fire-form brass.. using the standard with 25/06 brass no fire forming is necessary.. my barrel maker at Montana Rifle told me I would like the standard better-but I had 4 other AI and they are all great thus the 6.5 AI.. But look at it compared to a 270 weatherby so it can be useful.. My 280AI was a very very good round and the 338-35w-375. all performed ver very well.. I once spent a day with P O Ackely at his chicken house shop and he said you can never improve any calibre under 270 cal . on the 63 mm case , you know P O was the best.. Happy shooting and if you find the majic powder please post.. Trixie

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    P.O. was right. We do have slower powders now than he had but still there are limits. I have made some headway with the new slower powders, Norma MR-2 and Rl-25 seem to optimize the 6.5 AI, and I'm glad I have one to experiment with but the standard is a great cartridge. Don't have the mojo yet but I'm going to try Vihta N170 and see what happens.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  11. #11

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    I have one with a 26" Pac-Nor 1:8. I've tried a lot of slower powders, and Re-25 is it for me.

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    Default 6.5-06 ai

    This is for those that have 6.5.-06 AI.If you are tired of fireforming brass for this cal,you can now buy brass from Quality Cartridge in Maryland.You can get his info at shooting-hunting.com.I am very happy with my 6.5.Built on a AV sako action.
    Geejay

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    I had Bulberry make a AI barrel for my Encore at 24". It is a little heavy for the purpose so I don't use it much. It will shoot as flat as the .25-06 with a little heavier bullet. I think after playing with this barrel a bit, I agree that the standard is a fine round and the AI may not be worth it unless you just want to squeeze out the last little bit from the '06 brass.

  14. #14

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    Can't understand why anyone would even WANT a AI round in this caliber. The case is already OVER bore (meaning it can take more powder, than the bore will allow to be used, so too much space in the case to begin with).. I used to have a 25/06 AI, way back when young and dumb and influenced by BS.. killed my first white tail with it.. wouldn't do anything the regular 25/06 wouldn't do, except eat more powder for the same result, and made me have to ruin an action, since they have to have the rails reconfigured to feed right.. once modified, you can't go back, so now have an action no one else will probably want..and a round that's no better than the regular one. Stick with the regular round and be happy, unless you think bragging about having something different at the range is important.. If you need more than the regular 6.5 06, get a 264 Winchester.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost View Post
    Can't understand why anyone would even WANT a AI round in this caliber. The case is already OVER bore (meaning it can take more powder, than the bore will allow to be used, so too much space in the case to begin with).. I used to have a 25/06 AI, way back when young and dumb and influenced by BS.. killed my first white tail with it.. wouldn't do anything the regular 25/06 wouldn't do, except eat more powder for the same result, and made me have to ruin an action, since they have to have the rails reconfigured to feed right.. once modified, you can't go back, so now have an action no one else will probably want..and a round that's no better than the regular one. Stick with the regular round and be happy, unless you think bragging about having something different at the range is important.. If you need more than the regular 6.5 06, get a 264 Winchester.
    I do agree with you in principle, you seem to be a bit biased by your own experienced. That said I have made several guns in AI and had the need to change the feed rails on only one. I've made pre 64's, SAKO AV's and Mausers into AI's with no follower or rail change. We loose around in the magazine. But I agree about the 6.5 bore and any more powder space beyond the standard 30-06. I have a very nice 6.5-06 AI on a SAKO A-V action and Shilen barrel for sale. Great gun, shoots great but only gives me about 150 fps over the standard 6.5-06....which is a great cartridge all on its own, at the expense of a several more grains of powder.
    The 256 Newton should have stayed with us and the 25 Neider and the 270 O'Conner would not have ever been needed.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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