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HomeHunting6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 Evaluate & Comparability

6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 Evaluate & Comparability

Making an attempt to resolve between the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor cartridges? Right here’s what you’ll want to find out about them.

I believe most hunters would agree that the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor each incredible cartridges for sure conditions. Nevertheless, whereas there’s undoubtedly some overlap of their capabilities, there are some main variations between the 6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 cartridges you have to be conscious of.

Sadly, as is usually the case with many issues involving the 6.5 Creedmoor, separating truth from fiction or figuring out the true capabilities of a cartridge is way simpler stated than performed today. As you’ll study right here shortly, each cartridges are ideally fitted to totally different duties, however every will also be tailored to different makes use of to a sure diploma by switching bullet weights and kinds.

On this article, I’m going to analyze the 6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 debate intimately and supply some perception into which cartridge is best fitted to widespread searching conditions so you can also make an knowledgeable resolution on which one will work greatest on your particular person wants as a hunter or shooter.

Earlier than we get began, I’ve a few administrative notes for you.

First, although the .223 Remington and the 5.56x45mm NATO are technically totally different cartridges, the sensible distinction in efficiency between the .223 vs 5.56 could be very small and doesn’t make any distinction for the needs of this text. Use excessive warning when trying to interchange the .223 Remington and 5.56x45mm NATO cartridges although.

For a extra detailed dialogue on the variations between the .223 Remington and 5.56x45mm NATO cartridges, learn this text: 5.56x45mm NATO vs .223 Remington

Subsequent, a few of the hyperlinks beneath are affiliate hyperlinks. This implies I’ll earn a small fee (at no additional value to you) in the event you make a purchase order. This helps help the weblog and permits me to proceed to create free content material that’s helpful to hunters like your self. Thanks on your help.

Historical past Of The 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor

As is usually the case in these cartridge comparisons, the story of the 6.5 Creedmoor and the .223 Remington each start with the .308 Winchester.

The US Navy adopted the M-14 rifle and the 7.62x51mm NATO cartridge after World Conflict II to interchange the 30-06 and the M-1 Garand. Nevertheless, the navy wasn’t utterly glad with that rifle or cartridge and shortly started trying to find a substitute for each throughout the Fifties.

Even so, Winchester noticed a whole lot of potential with the 7.62x51mm cartridge although and launched the extraordinarily related 308 Winchester in 1952. That new cartridge was certainly an enormous business success for the corporate and has seen widespread use within the fingers of hunters and aggressive shooters all around the world previously 70 years.

Nicely, whereas the US Navy has continued to make use of the 7.62x51mm cartridge in medium machineguns and in sniper/designated marksman rifles to this present day, they ultimately adopted the M-16 rifle as their new infantry service rifle.

That new rifle was chambered within the excessive velocity 5.56x45mm cartridge, which was derived from the .222 Remington.

Much like what Winchester did with the 308/7.62, Remington noticed the potential for an incredible business alternative and developed a civilian model of the brand new cartridge that was extraordinarily related, however not equivalent to the 5.56 NATO cartridge. Formally standardized with SAAMI because the .223 Remington within the early Sixties, the brand new cartridge was able to firing a 55 grain bullet at muzzle velocities approaching 3,300 ft per second (1,330 foot kilos of power).

The 5.56x45mm NATO cartridge had very related ballistics and the unique 5.56x45mm M193 ball load fired a .224″ 55 grain full steel jacket bullet at 3,250 ft per second (1,290 foot kilos of power).

Sadly, the 5.56x45mm NATO cartridge and M-16 rifle received off to a really tough begin in service with the U.S. Military and Marine Corps in Vietnam. Modifications to the rifle and ammunition solved many of the reliability issues that plagued the system throughout the battle. Giant numbers of individuals within the U.S. navy nonetheless had severe issues relating to the stopping energy of the diminutive cartridge although.

This was very true for the brand new M855 load adopted with the M-16A2 rifle. Incorporating a brand new bullet design with a metal penetrator, the M855 load fired a 62 grain full steel jacket bullet at 3,025 ft per second (1,260 ft-lbs of power).

The M855 penetrates significantly better than the M193, however complaints concerning the terminal efficiency of the 5.56x45mm cartridge from Troopers grew even louder after the brand new ball load noticed use in fight within the Nineteen Nineties and early 2000s.

Civilian hunters who adopted the AR-15 and .223 Remington cartridge over the past couple many years of the twentieth Century shared lots of these issues. The rifle and cartridge labored extraordinarily effectively for predator/varmint searching and goal capturing, however the .223 Remington additionally developed a repute for unsatisfactory efficiency on greater recreation like deer.

With all that stated, the 223 Remington stays probably the most widespread cartridges in North America right now. By way of ammo gross sales, it’s in all probability the most well-liked centerfire rifle cartridge in the US.

The cartridge is extraordinarily widespread amongst those that take pleasure in capturing the AR-platform in addition to predator and varmint hunters. It’s additionally in quite common utilization with leisure shooters starting from informal plinking to extra severe aggressive capturing.

Moreover, whereas it’s nonetheless on the sunshine facet for that kind of work, advances in bullet know-how have made the 223 Remington way more efficient on deer sized recreation right now than was the case even 10-20 years in the past.

Now let’s shift gears for a minute and speak concerning the growth of the 6.5 Creedmoor.

Dave Emary of Hornady Manufacturing and Dennis DeMille of Creedmoor Sports activities noticed a chance to construct a brand new cartridge for prime energy rifle competitors capturing within the early 2000s.

Bear in mind how I discussed the success of the 308 Winchester in aggressive capturing matches earlier?

Nicely, Emary and DeMille wished to construct a really perfect lengthy vary capturing cartridge that might outperform the then 50 12 months outdated 308 Winchester. Particularly, they wished a cartridge that would slot in a brief motion rifle and was nonetheless simply as correct because the .308 Winchester at lengthy distance that additionally had much less recoil, much less wind drift, and a flatter trajectory.

By modifying a .30 Thompson Middle (.30 TC) case to shoot .264″ bullets, they efficiently constructed a cartridge optimized to be used with 4350 class propellants with a comparatively giant case capability that would additionally accommodate lengthy, heavy, excessive ballistic coefficient (BC) bullets with out intruding into the powder column.

Named the 6.5 Creedmoor (generally misspelled Creedmoore or Creedmore) in honor of the Creedmoor Matches and designed to be used with a comparatively quick 1:8″ rifling twist price, Emary and DeMille have been fairly profitable of their aim of constructing the perfect competitors capturing cartridge with a comparatively flat trajectory. 

A typical 6.5 Creedmoor load shoots a 140-grain bullet at about 2,700 fps (2,266 ft-lbs). So, the 6.5 Creedmoor doesn’t have eye popping ballistics, however it is rather correct, makes use of excessive BC bullets that retain power and resist wind drift exceptionally effectively, and has average recoil.

For these causes, the cartridge has seen a substantial amount of success within the fingers of competitors shooters and not too long ago made the soar into the mainstream searching neighborhood. The 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge has grow to be extraordinarily widespread amongst hunters and shooters who admire the delicate recoil and nice prolonged vary efficiency of the cartridge in recent times as effectively.

Should you’d prefer to study extra about how the 6.5 Creedmoor compares to the .308 Winchester in additional element, learn the article beneath:

6.5 Creedmoor vs 308 Winchester Debate Settled

6.5 Creedmoor and 223 Remington Cartridge Sizes

You may see variations between the 223 Remington and the 6.5 Creedmoor within the photographs beneath.

First, the 223 Remington is bodily fairly a bit smaller than the 6.5 Creedmoor.

The 6.5 Creedmoor has an extended general size and makes use of an extended case size than the 223 Remington. The Creedmoor cartridge has an general size of two.825″ and makes use of a case 1.92″ lengthy. The 223 Remington has an general size of two.26″ and makes use of a 1.76″ lengthy case.

That stated, the 223 Remington is designed to be used in an AR-15, which might solely accommodate cartridges as much as 2.26″ lengthy. So, the 223 is the utmost dimension cartridge that may slot in an AR-15. The longer 6.5 Creedmoor won’t slot in an AR-15 and requires using a bigger AR-10.

Each cartridges are generally present in short-action bolt motion rifles although.

The 6.5 Creedmoor has a bigger rim diameter than the .223 Remington as effectively (.473″ vs .378″).

For all these causes, the 6.5 Creedmoor has fairly a bit extra case capability than the 223 Remington.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor rim

Bullet dimension is one other one of many different vital variations between the 6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 Remington. The 6.5 Creedmoor makes use of .264″ diameter bullets whereas the 223 Remington makes use of smaller .224″ bullets.

The 223 Remington is able to utilizing bullets within the 35-77 grain vary. Of those, 55 grain and 62 grain bullet weights are by far the commonest.

Then again, the overwhelming majority of 6.5 Creedmoor manufacturing unit hundreds shoot bullets within the 95-160 grain vary, with 120gr, 130gr, 140gr, and 143gr grain bullets being the commonest. 

picture of 243 vs 223 bullets

The 6.5 Creedmoor can also be loaded to a better stress than the 223 Remington (62,000psi vs 55,000psi).

Observe: whereas the powder capability figures listed beneath do give a very good indication of the variations between the 2 cartridges, precise case capacities fluctuate barely in keeping with the model of brass used.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor size

223 Remington vs 6.5 Creedmoor Ballistics

As you possibly can in all probability think about, the variations within the exterior dimensions of those cartridges additionally translate into some vital variations of their ballistic efficiency. That is illustrated within the desk beneath evaluating Hornady Varmint Categorical and Nosler Trophy Grade manufacturing unit ammunition.

Particularly, the 223 Remington hundreds use 55gr V-Max (.255 BC) and 70gr AccuBond (.370 BC) bullets.

The 6.5 Creedmoor hundreds use 95gr V-Max (.365 BC) and 140gr AccuBond (.509 BC) bullets.

The Hornady hundreds use gentle for caliber varmint bullets fired at a really excessive velocity for every cartridge whereas the Nosler hundreds use heavy for caliber bullets designed for deer searching. This enables us to conduct as near an “apples to apples” comparability as is feasible for each cartridges for varmint and deer searching functions.

All 4 hundreds used a 200 yard zero.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor trajectory

Not surprisingly, the lighter varmint hundreds in every cartridge each have the flattest trajectory since they’ve a better muzzle velocity.

Apparently, the 2 cartridges have very related trajectories when utilizing the identical bullet kind. The 6.5 Creedmoor does have a barely flatter trajectory with each the V-Max and the AccuBond hundreds than the 223 Remington because it shoots a barely extra aerodynamic bullet at an analogous or barely increased muzzle velocity (within the case of the V-Max).

Nevertheless, the variations are very small with the 223 Remington having solely 2.1″ (6%) and a couple of.9″ (5.8%) extra bullet drop than the 6.5 Creedmoor at 500 yards. In actual fact, their trajectories are remarkably related contemplating the large bodily variations between the cartridges.

On the identical time, the 6.5 Creedmoor has considerably extra kinetic power than the 223 Remington in any respect ranges.

The 6.5 Creedmoor begins out with 70-95% extra muzzle power than the assorted 223 Remington hundreds. Because it makes use of a extra aerodynamic bullet, that edge in kinetic power grows as vary will increase.

That V-Max load from the 6.5 Creedmoor drops beneath 1,000 ft-lbs of power round 450 yards, however nonetheless has greater than double the retained kinetic power of essentially the most highly effective 223 load.

Likewise, the AccuBond load from the 6.5 Creedmoor retains over 1,000 ft-lbs of power out previous 500 yards and has about as a lot or extra kinetic power at that vary than the 223 Remington has at 100 yards.

The chart beneath compares how a lot a ten mile per hour crosswind impacts those self same 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor hundreds out to 500 yards.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor wind

Each cartridges even have considerably related quantities of wind deflection when utilizing the identical bullets, however the 6.5 Creedmoor has a fair greater edge over the 223 Remington and each 6.5 Creedmoor hundreds have much less wind deflection than each 223 Remington hundreds

Certainly, that is one other space the place the 6.5 Creedmoor shines since it’s effectively suited to utilizing very excessive BC bullets.

That is in stark distinction to the 223 Remington which is a excessive velocity cartridge that’s usually loaded with lighter bullets with a reasonably low BC that don’t retain power or resist wind deflection very effectively. In actual fact, that 95 grain V-Max bullet from the 6.5 Creedmoor has a better BC than even the actually heavy 70gr AccuBond from the 223 Remington.

Now let’s speak about recoil.

The desk beneath compares the recoil produced by handloads that approximate the efficiency of the Winchester manufacturing unit hundreds above firing the 70gr and 140gr bullets for the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor respectively when fired from equivalent 7 pound rifles.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor recoil

Felt recoil will fluctuate from shooter to shooter and rifle to rifle, however free recoil power remains to be a helpful option to evaluate cartridges.

As you possibly can see, the .223 Remington has considerably much less recoil than the 6.5 Creedmoor.

In actual fact, the 6.5 Creedmoor has roughly 3.5x extra recoil! That’s actually saying one thing too as a result of the 6.5 Creedmoor is a fairly delicate recoiling cartridge itself.

All issues thought-about, most hunters ought to be capable to deal with recoil from the 6.5 Creedmoor with out an excessive amount of bother. The .223 Remington simply has a particularly delicate (nearly non-existent) recoil.

So, the .223 Remington has an enormous benefit on this respect, particularly for smaller or recoil shy hunters.

 Don’t underestimate the impression that recoil has on the power of an individual to shoot precisely both.

Some individuals do deal with recoil higher than others, however all different issues being equal, they may completely shoot extra precisely with a milder recoiling cartridge.

What about 6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 accuracy?

The .223 Remington specifically has seen intensive use within the fingers of competitors shooters and has an excellent repute in that space. Nevertheless, the 6.5 Creedmoor additionally excels in that space as effectively and, if we’re being trustworthy, each cartridges are completely able to tack driving accuracy (sub-MOA, generally significantly better) in the best fingers.

At shorter vary, the cartridges are very evenly matched.

The .223 Rem seemingly has a small benefit resulting from the truth that the delicate recoil and flatter trajectory of the cartridge little question assist hunters place their pictures in the best spot to a better extent than the 6.5 Creedmoor.

The state of affairs adjustments somewhat bit when capturing at lengthy distances although.

In spite of everything, the 6.5 Creedmoor was particularly designed as a contest capturing cartridge. On the identical time, because it makes use of .264″ bullets, there’s a greater choice of excessive BC and excessive SD match grade searching bullets obtainable for the cartridge. These elements give the 6.5 Creedmoor an edge at longer vary the place resistance to wind drift turns into extra vital.

That’s to not say that the .223 isn’t correct or that there aren’t good high quality bullets obtainable for it. It’s simply that the general design of the 6.5 Creedmoor offers that cartridge an edge over the .223 Remington in potential accuracy at prolonged vary.

Moreover, there are a few different elements which can be additionally value discussing.

First, the 6.5 Creedmoor makes use of bigger diameter bullets than the 223 Remington.

Particularly, the bigger diameter .264″ bullets utilized by the cartridge have about 39% extra frontal floor space (also referred to as cross sectional space) than the .224″ bullets utilized by the 223 Remington (.0547 vs .0394 sq. inches). All different issues being equal, a much bigger bullet will make a much bigger gap, trigger extra tissue injury, and lead to extra blood loss.

This can be a important benefit in favor of the 6.5 Creedmoor, particularly on greater recreation.

picture of 223 vs 6.5 creedmoor bullets

Particularly when mixed with the truth that the 6.5 Creedmoor carries extra kinetic power downrange, these bigger diameter bullets will also be useful when searching huge recreation, particularly deer and even doubtlessly greater recreation.

On the identical time, the bullets utilized by the 6.5 Creedmoor normally have a better ballistic coefficient than these utilized by the 223 Remington.

The .264″/6.5mm bore diameter can also be in one thing of a candy spot the place it’s simpler to fabricate very excessive BC bullets that’s aren’t particularly heavy (just like the Hornady ELD Match or ELD-X). These aerodynamic projectiles don’t decelerate as quick and are extra proof against wind drift.

That’s not a tough and quick rule.

Nevertheless, it’s typically the case that .264″ bullets in the commonest weights shall be extra aerodynamic than in any other case equivalent .224″ in the commonest bullet weights.

On the identical time, the 6.5 Creedmoor additionally has an edge over the .223 Remington in bullet sectional density.

Sectional density (SD) is a measure of the ratio of the diameter of a projectile to its mass. 

All different issues equal, a heavier bullet of a given caliber shall be longer and subsequently have a better sectional density and consequently penetrate deeper than projectiles with a decrease mass and sectional density.

For example, 95 grain, 120 grain, and 140 grain .264″ bullets have sectional densities of .195, .246 and .287 respectively.

This compares favorably to 55 grain, 62 grain, and 77 grain .224″ bullets which have sectional densities of .157, .177, and .219 respectively. 

Whereas the heaviest .224″ caliber bullet does have a better SD than the lightest .264″ caliber varmint bullet, the heavier .264″ bullets supposed to be used on greater recreation (the place bullet penetration is extra vital) far outclass these utilized by the 223 Remington.

All issues thought-about, the 6.5 Creedmoor is just a considerably extra highly effective cartridge. It’s not a heavy hitter on the extent of cartridges just like the 7mm Rem Magazine or 300 Win Magazine and even the 30-06, but it surely’s nonetheless in a totally totally different league from the .223 Remington and 5.56 NATO.

223 vs 6.5 Creedmoor Barrel Life

The 6.5 Creedmoor will in all probability burn out a given barrel sooner than the .223 Remington as a result of it makes use of a lot extra powder.

Precisely how briskly that happens depends upon quite a lot of elements like the standard of the barrel, the precise ammunition used, and so on.

For severe goal shooters, this could be a concern.

The excellent news for hunters is that typical barrel life for even the 6.5 Creedmoor is greater than sufficient to final for a few years of searching with no points. Precisely when the barrel is unusable depends upon the rifle in addition to the hunter in query and what kind of efficiency they anticipate from their rifle.

Those that need extraordinarily tight teams for lengthy vary capturing are in all probability going to need to change their barrel out prior to these with barely decrease requirements.

All different issues being equal, the 223 Remington will in all probability have an extended barrel life than the 6.5 Creedmoor, however the distinction might be not large enough for the common hunter to fret about until they’re placing a extremely giant variety of rounds downrange.

So the place can we stand with every cartridge?

6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 Remington

The 6.5 Creedmoor fires a bigger diameter, considerably heavier, and normally extra aerodynamic bullet than the 223 Remington. Due to this fact the 6.5 Creedmoor has extra recoil, a flatter trajectory, extra resistance to wind drift, and carries considerably extra retained kinetic power downrange than the 223 Remington.

223 vs 6.5 Creedmoor Ammo

Each cartridges are extraordinarily widespread amongst hunters and shooters all around the world. Certainly, each are additionally seemingly within the High 10 hottest centerfire rifle cartridges in the US. Whereas the 6.5 Creedmoor is extraordinarily widespread itself, the 223 Remington is probably going nonetheless essentially the most broadly used of the 2 and is often the most well-liked centerfire rifle cartridge in the US by way of uncooked ammo gross sales.

Whereas it’s usually very straightforward to seek out quite a lot of ammo for each cartridges throughout regular occasions, ammo is normally best to seek out for the 223 Remington. Normally, 223 Remington ammo is often the least costly of the 2 as effectively.

Throughout the 2020-2022 ammo scarcity, the distinction between the 2 cartridges has grow to be much more obvious and 223 Remington ammo is usually considerably simpler to seek out and way more fairly priced than ammo for the 6.5 Creedmoor.

Nearly each ammunition producer produces a number of totally different a great deal of .223 Remington and 5.56 NATO ammunition. 

This ammo ranges from match grade and surplus FMJ ammo greatest fitted to work on the vary on one finish of the spectrum, to hole level, smooth level, and ballistic tip ammo designed for searching and private safety on the opposite finish.

Observe that FMJ ammo is typically NOT authorized for searching in most states. So, whereas that navy surplus 5.56x45mm ammo is sweet to be used on the vary, I don’t advocate taking it afield in quest of recreation.

Most .223 and 5.56 NATO ammunition is designed for goal capturing or plinking, however corporations like Barnes, Federal Premium, Hornady, Nosler, Remington, and Winchester all produce ammunition in these chamberings appropriate for searching. 

Most of that is varmint searching ammo, like Hornady’s Varmint Categorical and Superformance Varmint strains, Nosler’s Varmageddon line, and Winchester’s Varmint X line.

Nevertheless, there are additionally a handful of .223 Remington ammo choices particularly designed and marketed for large recreation searching. As an example, there are each .223 and 5.56 hundreds within the Barnes VOR-TX line, Federal affords .223 Remington ammo of their Fusion line, Nosler affords 223 ammo of their E-Tip and Trophy Grade strains, and Winchester produces .223 Remington ammo of their Deer Season XP, Energy Max Bonded, and Tremendous X strains.

Then again, 6.5 Creedmoor ammo tends to be extra widespread in ammo strains designed for deer searching.

The massive ammunition producers like Barnes, Browning, Federal Premium, Hornady, Nosler, Remington, Sierra, Swift, and Winchester all produce a big number of high quality 6.5 Creedmoor manufacturing unit ammunition appropriate for searching most species. In every case, there’s usually a wide variety of bullet varieties and weights for every cartridge appropriate for large recreation searching. 

That stated, predator and varmint rounds just like the Hornady V-Max and Nosler Varmageddon are additionally generally obtainable for the 6.5 Creedmoor.

Ammo availability can also be normally wonderful on-line and the larger retailers usually have a wide variety of high quality manufacturing unit ammo for each cartridges as effectively.



Should you’d prefer to study extra about a few of the numerous searching ammunition decisions for the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor, learn these articles:

Finest 223 Ammo For Searching Deer, Hogs, And Different Huge Recreation

Finest 6.5 Creedmoor Ammo For Searching Deer, Hogs, And Varmints

Handloaders will admire the truth that reloading elements for each cartridges are broadly obtainable and there’s a superb number of bullet decisions for every cartridge. So, you should have no bother working up a very good customized load for both one in the event you prefer to handload.

The 6.5 Creedmoor makes use of the identical 6.5mm/.264″ bullet dimension as different 6.5mm cartridges just like the 6.5 Grendel, 6.5 PRC, .264 Winchester Magnum, 260 Remington, and 6.5×55 Swede.

The .223 Remington and 5.56 NATO use the identical .224″ bullet dimension because the 219 Zipper, 222 Remington, 22 Hornet, 225 Winchester, 224 Valkyrie, 224 Weatherby Magnum, .22-250 Remington, and .220 Swift.

223 vs 6.5 Creedmoor Rifles

As soon as once more, the .223 Remington might be somewhat extra widespread than the 6.5 Creedmoor. Nevertheless, there’s a wide variety of rifles chambered in each cartridges.

Bear in mind: a rifle with a 5.56 NATO chamber can normally safely and precisely hearth .223 Remington ammunition, however the reverse just isn’t at all times true. So, many (however not all) gun producers chamber their rifles in 5.56x45mm NATO so their prospects have extra flexibility with ammo.

The .223 tends to be extra widespread in bolt motion rifles just like the Browning X-Bolt, Ruger American, Remington 700, and Winchester XPR. The 5.56 NATO is a particularly widespread chambering for AR-15 fashion rifles like these made by Bushmaster, CMMG, Noveske, Smith & Wesson, Sig Sauer, and Wilson Fight.

It’s additionally obtainable in different semi-automatic sporting rifles just like the Ruger Mini-14.

That’s not a tough and quick rule although and it’s common to seek out bolt motion 5.56 rifles. As an example, the light-weight CZ 527 and the Ruger American Ranch bolt-action rifles are each obtainable in 5.56 NATO. 

Then again, the 6.5 Creedmoor is extraordinarily widespread in bolt-action rifles. In actual fact, nearly each actually widespread bolt-action searching rifle in present manufacturing is accessible within the cartridge. 

As an example, the 6.5 Creedmoor is accessible in a number of totally different variations of the Remington Mannequin 700 and Winchester Mannequin 70. The identical goes for the Browning X-Bolt, Kimber Hunter, Mossberg Patriot, Nosler M48 and M21, Remington Mannequin 7, Ruger American, Ruger Hawkeye, Savage Axis, Savage 110, Tikka T3x, Weatherby Vanguard, and Winchester XPR.

Whereas the 6.5 Creedmoor is most typical in bolt-action rifles, it’s additionally obtainable in just a few totally different semi-auto rifles just like the S&W M&P 10. Heck, Springfield Armor even produces a model of their M1A rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor.

Each cartridges are additionally obtainable in lever motion rifles. As an example, the Henry Lengthy Ranger is at the moment manufactured in each 223 and 6.5 Creedmoor.

So, you possibly can in all probability discover a good deer rifle obtainable in both cartridge whatever the motion kind you like.

Moreover, barrel lengths do fluctuate for each cartridges relying on the producer and precise mannequin.

The 6.5 Creedmoor is most typical with a 22″ barrel size. 24″ lengthy barrels aren’t uncommon although. Neither are 20″ and even shorter barrels.

Many .223 Remington rifles have 22″ barrels as effectively, but it surely’s additionally common to see that cartridge in rifles with shorter 16″ or 18″ barrels, particularly with the assorted AR-15 fashions.

All issues thought-about, rifles chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor are usually barely longer, heavier, and extra unwieldy than rifles chambered in 223 Remington.

Having a shorter and lighter rifle is extra vital on some hunts than on others. So, simply hold that in thoughts.



Should you’d prefer to study extra about a few of the numerous searching rifle decisions for the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge, learn this text:

Finest 6.5 Creedmoor Searching Rifles

6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 Remington: Which Is Proper For You?

Do you primarily hunt medium sized recreation like whitetail deer, feral hogs, or black bears at ranges inside 200 yards? Each will work on deer sized recreation in the event you do your half. Nevertheless, the 6.5 Creedmoor is considerably extra highly effective and I strongly advocate utilizing it for searching deer as a substitute of the .223 Remington.

A 6.5 Creedmoor capturing 120-140-grain bullets is a really efficient deer load.

Whereas I don’t advocate utilizing it on black bear, the 223 Remington will completely work on deer with good bullet choice (just like the Winchester Deer Season XP or a Barnes load) and with good shot placement. It’s undoubtedly on the sunshine facet although and has a a lot shorter efficient vary on deer than the 6.5 Creedmoor. Additionally, you will have a lot much less of a margin for error together with your shot placement and you have to be ready for a doubtlessly longer and tougher to comply with monitoring job with the 223 as effectively.

Are you searching for a cartridge to hunt predators, varmints, and small recreation animals (like prairie canines) with? The 6.5 Creedmoor will work very well on this function and many individuals use it for predator searching as a result of extraordinarily flat trajectory and arduous hitting traits of the cartridge. Nevertheless, I believe the .223 Remington is your best option right here as a result of it has a comparatively flat trajectory, ammunition is cheaper, and there are numerous varieties of .223 ammo particularly designed for predator and varmint searching.

Moreover, the 223 Remington is extraordinarily widespread in AR-15 sample rifles, that are nice for many who need the power to take a particularly speedy follow-up shot in case of a miss or in case a number of coyotes are available without delay.

The 223 Remington is a really efficient coyote cartridge, however there’s a better probability of wounded and misplaced animals when utilizing it in comparison with the 6.5 Creedmoor. This isn’t as huge of a problem with the 223 as it’s with smaller cartridges, but it surely’s one thing to bear in mind.

So, the 6.5 Creedmoor is a more sensible choice for hunters who need to decrease this problem as a lot as doable (like individuals in a coyote searching contest). The draw back of the 6.5 Creedmoor is that fur injury will seemingly be a much bigger downside.

Are you searching for the cartridge higher fitted to lengthy vary looking for recreation like mule deer or pronghorn antelope in open nation the place you would possibly must take a shot at longer ranges? The 6.5 Creedmoor is certainly the way in which to go right here between these two cartridges and that is an space the place the 6.5 Creedmoor actually shines. Be very cautious making an attempt to shoot recreation at longer distances with this spherical although. Individuals do it on a regular basis with a whole lot of success, however bullet weight and kind are each crucial right here.

I’d not shoot previous 300 yards on a deer or pronghorn with a boring searching bullet, however might doubtlessly prolong that to 350-400 yards or doubtlessly even farther with a load utilizing a excessive BC bullet (just like the Hornady ELD-X or the Nosler AccuBond Lengthy Vary). All of it depends upon the circumstances and the ability of the shooter although. If we’re being trustworthy, most individuals don’t have any enterprise capturing at recreation previous 300 yards with a 6.5 Creedmoor (or any cartridge for that matter) in any respect.

Would you like a searching cartridge that’s effectively fitted to caribou, moose, elk, eland, kudu, or pink stag searching? I contemplate each to be on the sunshine facet for searching bigger recreation, however the 6.5 Creedmoor is certainly higher than the .223 Remington for this kind of searching as a result of it shoots bigger diameter bullets that carry extra kinetic power downrange, particularly with heavy bullets.

Use heavy for caliber, managed growth bullets (like a 140gr Nosler Partition), hold your capturing distances quick (underneath 250 yards), solely shoot broadside or very barely quartering angles, and be extraordinarily cautious together with your shot placement.

Would you like a cartridge appropriate for self or dwelling protection? Each cartridges will definitely work on this regard, however I’d go together with the 223 Remington right here primarily resulting from rifle choice. In sensible phrases, an AR-15 in 223 Remington is a better to seek out rifle that’s seemingly smaller and simpler to deal with in shut quarters than an AR-10 or a bolt-action rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor, even when the 6.5 Creedmoor is extra highly effective.

Are you delicate to recoil and in want of a severe low recoil cartridge? Each are very delicate recoiling cartridges, however the 223 Remington has the sting over the 6.5 Creedmoor right here. It actually depends upon what you’re making an attempt to do although. The 223 Remington would undoubtedly be my advice for informal capturing on the vary or predator searching.

The 223 Remington can also be an amazing selection as a centerfire rifle cartridge for a totally model new shooter to start out out with.

Even for a more moderen and/or recoil shy hunter, the 6.5 Creedmoor might be a greater general selection for deer searching because it has an extended efficient vary and offers the hunter so extra room for error. That cartridge could be very “shootable” in a rifle that matches the hunter effectively, has a very good recoil pad, and is supplied with both a suppressor or a muzzle brake.

As I’ve said earlier than: the .223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor are each strong rifle cartridges. Nevertheless, for the reason that distinction between them (6.5 Creedmoor vs 223) is fairly huge in sure respects, every cartridge is best suited to particular conditions than the opposite.

Rigorously consider your wants as a hunter primarily based upon the circumstances you foresee utilizing the cartridge in, get a very good searching rifle chambered within the cartridge you choose, study to shoot it effectively, use high quality bullets, and it ought to serve you effectively afield.


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The Lyman fiftieth Version (p139-143 & p183-184) and Hornady tenth Version (p160-168 and p317-322) reloading manuals have been used as references for the historical past of the 6.5 Creedmoor vs 223 cartridges. I obtained the info used to match the trajectory of the cartridges from Hornady (right here) and Nosler (right here). Knowledge used to calculate recoil was obtained from the Nosler ninth version reloading handbook (p120 & p275). Case capability data for the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor was obtained from Chuck Hawks (right here and right here). Most stress and information to match cartridge sizes for the 223 Remington and 6.5 Creedmoor have been obtained from SAAMI (p26 and p23). I used to match trajectory and recoil for the cartridges.

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